Inuvik or Bust!

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Tropic-Of-Canada, Jul 31, 2013.

  1. Tropic-Of-Canada

    Tropic-Of-Canada Guru of Shoe Goo

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    Vancouver Island
    With just over 2 weeks to play with, I plan on heading solo on an 04 Suzuki DRZ400S as far north as possible, starting in Victoria BC, and time allowing, a bit of dirt through BC, through the Yukon, and possibly, hopefully, onto Inuvik. This will be a real test for me, and I’m not sure if I’ll see another chance to do this for a long time. We’ll see how far I get!

    Ever since getting my first and only motorcycle 2 ½ years ago, I’ve always wanted to go out on some kind of epic mission, like so many I’ve read about. It was my brother who got me into ADV, and I think it was his trip across Canada, thru to Darien Gap that really got me thinking about traveling this way. I was always a bicycle guy, mostly mountain biking and trials, so the transition to a dual sport was somewhat natural, it just took a while to make it happen, getting licences and finances together. Nowadays, I’d have it no other way- this is the way to travel!

    I’ve done a few multi day rough camping and touring adventures around southern BC, and have learned a lot along the way, riding, exploring, camping, and refining the art of self-sufficiency, always for fun, though sometimes torture, to mentally and physically prepare myself for some bigger adventure. I don’t like getting stuck places, and I have learned that the hard way! I think with some of the pitfalls I have been through in the past with breakdowns, flat tires, and faulty electrics, I have a good idea of what to look out for, and I am religious about bringing what I need to get me home.

    One of my biggest concerns is gas. I am riding an 04 Suzuki DRZ400S with a 10L tank. I usually carry a 5.67L can on the side, this time I will be carrying a 10L can on top of my bag as well. I usually get about 160-170kms per tank, so I expect this should get me about 400kms range, guessing on the conservative side. I’ll have to bring some oil too. I’m at 44,000kms, and I do burn a bit.

    I switched to some older tires I had for the way up. They have a little bit of life, but not much. I’m switching back to 606’s, which I will be carrying, when the old ones are cooked. I’d buy tires on the way, but I have to pull off this trip for about $1500...

    I plan on heading out the 2nd of August, so roughly 3-4 days through BC, 5 or 6 in the Yukon. Haven’t planned further than that..

    First "real" ride report, Wish me luck!

    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. DR650SEDDY

    DR650SEDDY ride2discover

    Joined:
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    Awsome picture, good luck and have a safe trip.
    :lurk
    #2
  3. Tropic-Of-Canada

    Tropic-Of-Canada Guru of Shoe Goo

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    Thanks! Just packing up again...

    Borrowed a SPOT device from a co-worker today! Now I just have to figure out how to set up the thing...
    #3
  4. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    Montreal via BC
    Whoo! :clap

    Looks like you're ready to do some wheelies :lol3
    (will be better once you can swap those tires out)

    Let us know about the SPOT thing, I think you may need to use the username and password of your co-worker to login and get it working https://login.findmespot.com/spot-main-web/auth/login.html

    Have fun man, take it easy :ricky
    #4
  5. TxLoneRider

    TxLoneRider Been here awhile

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    Have a great trip, ride safe.

    And you completely remind me of my trip to AK in 2010, on my KLR. The night before I left got the bike loaded with a pair of tires and all. Sat on the the bike and my wife was like, um, it's a bit low, no???

    And yeah, it was. So off went the tires, and the spare tubes, and by the time I got everything figured out, I was 4 or 5 hours past my original start time.

    Really wish I kept the spare tubes. But that is another story. :deal

    Take care, and post lots of pictures.
    #5
  6. Scratch33

    Scratch33 Fugawi?

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    Have fun! Girlfriend & I rode up the Dempster in '07 on our WeeStrom and Tiger. Have a beer at the Trapper Pub, the MacKenzie Hotel has good food and if you drop by the fire station and ask nicely they'll let you wash your bike.
    #6
  7. Tropic-Of-Canada

    Tropic-Of-Canada Guru of Shoe Goo

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    Thanks, the tires are going ASAP!
    The load looks sketch, but it's actually quite stable for what it is. The can is empty, and all the heavy stuff is down low. It's not the best, but it still feels way better than carrying a passenger!

    Switched to a 41T rear sprocket, just cruises at 110 kph now!!

    Guess what I woke up to today??? :dog Hasn't rained in over a month, and I am faced with riding into a monsoon on the very first day!!

    I'll try to figure out that SPOT over some coffee before I go, might as well, it's still raining... I may not make PG today, but I will be off the Island...
    #7
  8. Phoenix101

    Phoenix101 Long timer

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    good luck! We are planning another run on the Dempster in 2014 as we failed to meet our goal in 2012. The road was a mess with the reports coming of "ride 40 feet, fall over, pickup the bike and repeat." We were going to try it anyway but when they pulled one of the ferries out of the water due to high water and debris we were screwed:eek1 and due to time limited (vacation time) we had to turn South.
    #8
  9. gunnerbuck

    gunnerbuck Island Hopper

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    Location:
    N.V.I, B.C.

    It should dry out as you head north, we haven't seen a drop nor is there any in the forecast...
    The higher gearing should lesson engine oil use by giving the motor a more relaxed cruising RPM...

    I look forward to following along...
    #9
  10. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    Gah, I hate that part of a trip :puke1all the little delays before actually setting off...

    PG is a long haul! but you'll feel great once you're rolling
    #10
  11. TxLoneRider

    TxLoneRider Been here awhile

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    Aiy, full disclosure, I am a big guy, about 265lbs with broad shoulders.

    The 4 big gripes with my TX to AK and back were

    1) I did not strap down my gear well enough one day, and lost a dry bag, that bag had my tire tools. I needed those tools just outside Dawson, luckily I ran into the Dick at the downtown hotel and he got me going.

    2) When I got a new rear tire in Washington State, I did not replace the rear tube (with the patch from Dawson City), the tube died after 100 miles of riding post new tire. New RULE: If the tube is patched, at first reasonable opportunity, new tube!

    3) I changed my mind to do the haul road to Prudhoe Bay. I allowed myself to think too fast, I needed to slow down. But I went south instead and went to McCarthy and Valdez, which where both cool. But I had no problem getting the McCarthy, at a good pace, even with the reported road condition of the haul road, I could have made it.

    4) The KLR with me on it was not able to keep up to traffic on some of the roads. That was somewhat mitigated by route selection. But with limited vacation time, sometimes you need to just ride at 80mph.

    ride safe. And keep us posted if you can.
    #11
  12. Tropic-Of-Canada

    Tropic-Of-Canada Guru of Shoe Goo

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    K Anton, just sent out a SPOT message, wanna check your email??

    If there is anything else I should do with this thing, besides adding emails, someone let me know... never used one before..I don't think the owner subscribes to the mapping feature.

    Jeez, it's pouring again!! Gotta get outta here soon!
    #12
  13. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    #13
  14. uraberg

    uraberg whosaberg?

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    Buffalo, NY
    I've always wondered if it is possible to ride all the way past Inuvik to Reindeer station? (I've got it on the brain as well). Would you mind checking it out?
    #14
  15. Oldone

    Oldone One day at a time!

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    That's a pretty nice looking bike and the more I see it and read about it the more I think that might be my next bike. Either that or a WR250R?

    Gary
    #15
  16. hasenwerk

    hasenwerk Long timer

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    Have a great trip - I am really interested in how the 41T sprocket works out for you on the highway and the gravel as I am about to try the same.
    #16
  17. ccoldwell

    ccoldwell n00b

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    Just met you this morning at clover point as you launched! The bike looked great pulling away all loaded up. An arctic trip is definitely in my future as I said, so I'll be following you to see how you get on.

    You sure looked happy brother, ride on! Safe return - I'll buy you a few beers when you get back in exchange for stories.
    :freaky
    #17
  18. L.B.S.

    L.B.S. Long timer

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    Good luck, and have a safe fun time, Tropic! :freaky
    #18
  19. RACINGTHESUN

    RACINGTHESUN Been here awhile

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    On the Flatirons
    Will be following along, keep us posted:clap
    #19
  20. Yukon Jon

    Yukon Jon Perma-lurker

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    Off to a solid start, good luck, if you need anything when you're passing through the Yukon, drop a line.
    #20