Bella Coola and Beyond: 9 days in and out BC on 2 F800GSs

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by MotoLara, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. MotoLara

    MotoLara ADV rider wannabe

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2009
    Oddometer:
    864
    Location:
    Salt Spring Island, British Columbia
    Day 1 (443km): Party in Port Hardy

    We are back in the saddle again. After a much needed hiatus from Adventure Riding - we needed to recover from Taking the Road South / RR here - the summer of 2012 is all about re-connecting with our neglected BMWs.

    Our Plan: The only part of this particular trip that was planned was making reservations on BC Ferries Queen of Chilliwack to travel from Port Hardy to Bella Coola. Once arriving on the mainland the adventure begins and the plan ends. This particular trip is about getting lost in BC, the more remote the better.

    Bella Coola and beyond - 2012 at EveryTrail
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    This story beings on July 4th, 2012. The weather looked like it was going to cooperate today, but we were in no hurry. All we needed to do was get to Port Hardy before dark so that we could take the ferry in the morning. We have done this ride before, so we weren't planning on making any "tourist" stops. Rubber down, throttle open.

    We caught the 12:25pm ferry leaving Salt Spring, after spending the morning doing some last minute packing and errands. I had unfortunately spent the previous evening sleeping in Victoria International Airport, having missed my ferry home due to a flight delay. Under normal circumstances I would have taken the day off at home to rest, but the ferry to Bella Coola leaves Thursday morning, and that was really the only option.

    The 400+ kilometers to Port Hardy that passed by were fairly uneventful. We stopped for gas in Courtney and munched on a delicious Subway sandwich in the sun for our lunch. We spent some time getting acquainted with our new G9s, figured out what items we forgot behind, enjoyed the nice sunny day and took our time riding the old school coastal highway. North of Campbell River traffic thinned out and didn't make many stops. Mostly rugged landscapes were on the menu with some forestry activity thrown into the mix.

    Views on the way to P. Hardy. Sunny days finally arrived to the West coast! :clap
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    Once we arrived in Port Hardy we filled up with gas, checked out where the ferry terminal was (so we knew what we were doing tomorrow morning) and camped. We stayed at an eclectic place on the way to the ferry, Woodlands Campsite. We didn't do much exploring since we arrived pretty late in the evening. We just made something to eat and called it a night.

    Camping spot for the night
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    It was nice to not get rained on and be back on the road; just us and our tent. Boy do these bikes feel heavy though, we had been riding them "naked" for the last couple of day trips and being packed up for an overnight trip really changes things :lol3.
    #1
  2. dondesmo

    dondesmo Senior Squid

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    122
    Location:
    Fed Way PNW
    I will am anxious to follow your ride as I am planning a similiar trip later this summer out of the Seattle area.
    #2
  3. tkent02

    tkent02 Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,983
    Location:
    Littleton, CO
    Me, too, leaving in about a week.
    #3
  4. soph9

    soph9 Would Love to ride ALL the TIME

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,440
    Location:
    Stony Brook. NY
    I'm in !:D
    #4
  5. Tooth

    Tooth State of Jefferson

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    Oddometer:
    97
    Location:
    Southern Oregon,,,,State of Jefferson
    Bella Coola B.C.........B.C. stands for.......BEAR CENTRAL..........................
    #5
  6. oldtrout

    oldtrout Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Oddometer:
    195
    Location:
    Delta/, Cariboo BC
    Hola you two..... In !

    Really enjoyed your southern RR. Nice read and very well put together.

    Also, good timing on the weather ! Ya gotta wait for the 'flip' when summer really hits.

    Hope to meet you in Sept. for the BCBATR.

    Hi Soph9 - did you ever land those Tigers ?? You gals kick ass.:nod


    Cheers
    Logan.
    #6
  7. Vial Style

    Vial Style PRO ANTI

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2010
    Oddometer:
    37
    Location:
    RainCity British Columbia
    Lot's to see in the beautiful Likely/Barkerville area.
    Quesnel Forks has a good campsite, An assortment of old and restored buildings and a large graveyard.
    Ghost Lake falls are worth a stop, and there is (or recently was) a small remote resort at Comet Creek.
    I've also camped at Cariboo Lake. It was fantastic.
    #7
  8. Danger4u2

    Danger4u2 KX500 is Danger4u2

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2007
    Oddometer:
    748
    Location:
    OKC
    When I first saw my e mail notice I thought "all right back in the saddle again".
    And that was your opening line.
    #8
  9. GrizzLee

    GrizzLee RubiKon Adventures

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2010
    Oddometer:
    579
    Location:
    Pacific NorthWest
    #9
  10. Christian RA40XT

    Christian RA40XT Don't Panic!

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2011
    Oddometer:
    120
    Location:
    Ruhrpott, Germany
    Nomi and Alberto on Tour???? I`m in!:D
    #10
  11. Redhed

    Redhed Lost on the Island

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Oddometer:
    85
    Location:
    NorthWest Vancouver Island
    I rode from Bella Coola down to Pemberton last week. Great ride. There appears to be a resident Grizzly munching on clover close to the top of the Freedom Road out of Bella Coola. Have a safe ride you two. Vaya con Dios..
    #11
  12. naotweed

    naotweed Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2011
    Oddometer:
    133
    Location:
    BC, Canada
    #12
  13. naotweed

    naotweed Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2011
    Oddometer:
    133
    Location:
    BC, Canada
    :rofl
    #13
  14. SteveTheLocal

    SteveTheLocal Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    104
    Location:
    Island in the Salish Sea
    Get a job! :rofl
    #14
  15. BlackBeast

    BlackBeast Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    936
    Location:
    Ontario, CANADA
    What - where's the rest? Now I need to live vicariously through you. :norton
    #15
  16. MotoLara

    MotoLara ADV rider wannabe

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2009
    Oddometer:
    864
    Location:
    Salt Spring Island, British Columbia
    haha I'm working on it as I write this :deal I'll post an update today. It's hard to pick what photos to share... THANKS to all of you for leaving your comments :wave
    #16
  17. stickman1432

    stickman1432 Crusty Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    767
    Location:
    So.Cal.& St George UT-Baja-riding anywhere
    Great stuff keep it coming.....................:wink:
    #17
  18. MotoLara

    MotoLara ADV rider wannabe

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2009
    Oddometer:
    864
    Location:
    Salt Spring Island, British Columbia
    Every time I start my bike first thing in the morning the engine sounds TERRIBLE (I'll post a short video soon) :cry Remnants of the rebuild in Peru no doubt. Despite what my dealer says, it does not sound like my fathers F8GS. At least it's still going I guess, but I'm not pleased that dealers are adamant that that is how the bike is supposed to sound. No way.

    We had planned for a quick morning. Wake up, pack up and head to the ferry. We were supposed to get to the terminal 2 hrs before the scheduled sailing time for our reservation, and we did.... just. The ferry didn't seem that busy at any rate, so I think we would have been fine either way. The extra time hanging around the terminal was spent talking shop with the 2 1200GSs also taking the ferry, and eating some breakfast. Once again it was a nice day, so hanging around the ferry terminal was no big deal.


    A glorious sunny morning in P. Hardy
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    We didn't have to spend that long waiting to board the ferry, or it didn't seem that long anyway. On board we quickly secured the bikes and got some prime seating upstairs. What we didn't know at the time is that the chairs all face in the wrong direction so we ended up being on the opposite side that we had intended to. Lesson learned for next time.

    A BMW afair ... those tie-downs were pretty useless (the beemer owner on the left used his own tie-downs)
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    We took advantage of the ferry wall sockets and charged up all of our devices. Alternating between time lounging outside in the sun and relaxing inside out of the wind. Lunch was surprisingly good, somehow this ferry food tasted better than normal. We were able to leave all our things at our seats and roam about the boat worry free, a nice thing about traveling in Canada. All of our stuff was always waiting for us when we returned; it was a very comfortable relaxed atmosphere.

    Our spot for 13 hrs :evil
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    Ferry views

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    Very cool lighthouse

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    Lunch time! :wink:

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    The BC Ferries employees were exceptional, very friendly and helpful throughout. At dinner time they cooked up a BBQ on the bow outside deck, and it was fantastic. The ladies working in the cafeteria even gave us some techniques to score extra food! We dined out on the deck and were rewarded with a great view, sunshine and wildlife. Joining us for dinner was a pod of dolphins and then a little later some humpback whales decided to join the party. They weren't really doing anything exciting mostly just coming up and down getting some air, but out of nowhere one breached and it was awesome! We also had a slight peek of a tale. Either way it was great! Loved the ferry ride, it is a worthwhile experience particularly when the weather is clear skies and sunshine.

    Worth the price
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    The coast line

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    Originally named BASTO II

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    Blue skies all the way!
    :clap
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    BBQ on the deck!

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    Not often we have a chance for the two of us to be on the same photo :D
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    BBQ chicken was more than enough for 2
    :eek1
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    It was a very very nice dinner experience

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    Dolphins playing all around the ship

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    The tale of a whale

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    Mountains by the sea
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    Did we mention that the views were amazing?

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    See the size of the tree for a scale of things

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    Naomi takes great photos!

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    Near the end

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    Red snow :evil
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    It was a bit hectic when we landed in Bella Coola because they don't let you down to the car deck until the ferry is actually docked. We were racing like mad trying to get our bikes packed back up and helmets on. It was dark when we got off, but luckily it was only 16km to the campground we had booked in Hagensborg. The couple that run the Gnome Home RV and Campground are really friendly and they were waiting at the entrance with a flashlight to flag us down.

    We pretty much just set up the tent and crashed, it was a long but great day. Kinda weird since we didn't do any riding, haha


    Late camping
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    #18
  19. tofire409

    tofire409 Geared up and ready.

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Oddometer:
    742
    Location:
    Toronto, CDN
    It looks like this trip may provide a few pics that will worthy for another Horizon's calander :deal

    Sorry to hear that the bike still has not fully recovered from Peru.....winter project?

    I LOVE your photos and look forward to the rest of your report!
    #19
  20. GuateRider

    GuateRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,423
    Location:
    Antigua , Guatemala
    Great pictures Alberto :clap:clap:clap
    #20