Northern Quebec Canada

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Deadly99, Sep 14, 2009.

  1. donnymoto

    donnymoto Long timer

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    Those guys can handle a boat, that's for sure. Ted, "Freighter Canoes". Just the name is cool, seeing them in person is great. Sort of a squareback canoe on steroids.
    #41
  2. Dan Alexander

    Dan Alexander only happy when sad

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    Great posts guys, I'll have to pipe up and give my two cents worth when John gets some of my pics uploaded. Especially the one where the bike is belly up beside the big hydro dam :eek1

    Dan Juan .... :lol3
    #42
  3. ChrisP

    ChrisP Knobbed

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    Close! It's related.. Optimus 80 (aka Primus 71).. my dad's stove from.. 70's?

    Still works great!

    ChrisP
    #43
  4. ChrisP

    ChrisP Knobbed

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    Day4- cont'd

    Hooray! Made it to James Bay!
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    ATGATT - if you count sandals as proper gear! Dan heading down to pick up a few things for dinner.. (drunken women??)
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    View down the hill from the campsight- twinkling lights of Radisson.
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    #44
  5. Quantis

    Quantis Been here awhile

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    Day 5 - It Begins

    Today we were up bright and early to tackle the next big leg of our journey. Since the Funduro didn't want to play the day before at James bay Chris decided he was going to get up early and make sure the bike started. Unfortunatly the Funduro didn't sleep well and decided to not co-operate. Chris in frusteration left the bike and proceded to walk down to the visitors center and make full use of their public toilets.

    After returning to the site he decided to try the bike again. I guess it was feeling guilty about earlier and decided it was going to start right up. Weird.

    This prompted a search for the local parts store. Luckily because everyone, and I mean everyone, owns either a 4wheeler, a ski-doo, or both there was a NAPA autoparts that had an extensive selection of batteries. Now with a new battery in hand and everyone loaded up we could begin!

    First stop at the start of the Trans-Tiaga!
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    Making time
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    Next stop was this tiny gas station in a "tornado magnet" of a trailerpark town called Nouchimi (Or nuchachu, or nastysnatch, or whatever else we could come up with when we couldn't remember the name). Here we filled up and headed out for Mirage outfitters

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    NOTE: IF YOU CAN AVOID IT DON'T BUY GAS HERE. IF YOU CAN MAKE IT ~80Km TO MIRAGE YOU WILL SAVE ~20Cents/L.

    Shortly after Nouchimi is a "Belveder" or lookout where you can ride up a small hill with a killer view. Here's a shot of me at the top of it.

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    After a good day of riding and making Mirage in record time we opted to push along for another hour to try to make our next day easier. Eventually we came upon a gravel pit that we had heard about in other ride reports and setup camp in the setting sun.
    #45
  6. Brad Felmey

    Brad Felmey Long timer

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    This story rocks, and very timely for me. I'm making a big trip in 2010 that includes JBR, Goose Bay, etc., so I am hanging off every word here. :thumb
    #46
  7. Quantis

    Quantis Been here awhile

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    Tips and Tricks for the JBR, TT, and North road

    Here's a little info of things that will make other people doing a trip up here enjoy themselves alot more.

    1. BUGS: There's tonnes of blackflies so going later in the season (late Aug early Sep) really helps. Also bring a bug hat at a minimum. If the temps get much above 5C they are out.

    2. Its COLD!: Three of us bought second sleeping bags on this trip. Even though its nice and toasty durring the day it's cold at night. We had frost on our tents every night. I also had the liner in my jacket 90% of the time. Warm gloves and heated grips are nice too.

    3. Gas: My KLR gets ~300 KM before hitting reserve when fully loaded. My tank holds around 23 L (6 Gal) so I carried another 20L to be able to do the trip. There are a bunch of gas stations but some have short hours. We lucked out in the fact that it was almost Caribou season and everything was open. Including buying gas at the end of the TT.

    4. Speed: Despite the fresh graded sections we were able to maintain some wickid speeds. Offroad I was averaging somewhere around 95Km/h with the straight sections being over 120Km/h. On the JBR was another story, the speed limit is 100Km/h and you have 600Km of road with no cops. This means BAD gas Mileage!!! So bring a bit extra gas even if you think you'll make it.

    5. James Bay: When going to James Bay don't go to Chisasibi. Instad half way there you will see a turn off heading north across a dam. That is the way we went and it's much more beautiful. You also get a less obstructed view of the water.

    6. Water: Always cary at least a liter of water with you. When we headed to James bay most people didn't realize that it's SALT Water! Whoops! Also we didn't always end up camping near water and when we were in the gravel pit we ended up pumping water from a large puddel with my water filter.

    7. Cell Phones: Supprisingly Bell/Telus (CDMA Phones) worked in alot of places including Radisson. GSM phones (Rogers, AT&T, etc.) did not.

    8. Wifi: There is wifi at the Auberge Radisson (Name: Zone_1 WEP Key: Radisson_1 , Zone_2/Radisson_2, etc.) You need to be in the lobby for it to work. Also throttlemeister found free wifi at a resturant in Radisson. Finally there is free wifi at Mirage Outfitters but it's VERY SLOW. If you have a phone (iPhone) that can do VOIP calls set it up before hand just in case.

    9. Maps: Click here for a good map showing distances, gas, and camping/picnic locations -> http://creetourism.ca/res/driving_map.pdf


    That's about it for now. If there's more I'll make another post.
    #47
  8. RumRunner

    RumRunner Sit there, turn that

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    Those are the same 10 bags of chips that were there when we did Radisson in September ................. of 2008:lol3 :lol3 :lol3

    You silly Southerners, for $20 bucks you could have had 40lbs of local smoked fish:dg :dg :dg

    Good times, wish I made it up there this season.

    DW
    #48
  9. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Woke to sunshine and cold temps this morning. Again Chris's Funduro wouldnt start so he made his way over to the local auto parts store to buy a new battery. The rest of us packed up and made our way down to join him.

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    Lets hope that was the problem as we are about to head off to the middle of nowhere today. A very brisk 80 km of pavement down the James Bay Highway brought us to the beginning of the Trans Taiga Road. This is what we came here for. At 666km to the end without much on it other than a few hunt camps it was the reason for this trip. Remote and long:clap A total of 1350 km's of gravel! Our plan is to do it in three days. 358 km today to Mirage Outfitters, then a 620 km day to the end and back to Mirage, then a short 358 km day out and find somewhere to camp on the JBR. The weather forecast was looking good and the gang was excited to get going.
    We had a quick meeting and discussed a plan so we wouldnt get seperated too much. Each person is responsible for the guy behind him. On long straights you wait till you see a headlight. Also we would regroup every 100 km or so.

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    This is the first sign we see :cry

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    Then this one :D

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    Off we go, we were making good tracks and really enjoying it.

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    Bike of choice for this terrain :clap Fast, Faster and Fastest :evil

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    NOTE : At km 202 there is a free (well donation) campsite for anyone else heading this way. Complete with outhouses, covered picnic tables and water you can drink straight out of the river.
    We stopped here and warmed up and had some boil in the bag for lunch.

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    Another batch of gravel brought us to a hunting lodge and gas station at Nouchimi. The gas was about 1.80 a litre but it was hard to complain. This gas station does not have regular hours and may or maynot be open. Up here you DONT pass up a gas station so we all filled up. The guy running it is a real character, long hair, long beard and bad teeth. We all joked around that this could very well be the place where a Canadian version of Deliverance could take place. Me....I wouldnt camp here for fear off waking up to "Squeal like a Cariboo":huh

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    This sign looks important but unless you speak Cree or French good luck.

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    Off we went to Mirage.

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    We filled up here with gas that was 20 cents a litre cheaper, again you DON'T pass up on a gas station up here. We were going to camp here but as we still had 2 hours of daylight left Dan wisely convinced us to keep pushing on as it would make tomorrow a shorter day.

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    We pushed on for another hour and made 80km or so. The last 50km's were deep treacherous freshly graded gravel. Why some sections are graded perfectly and then some like this section become a bikers nightmare is beyond me. Maybe its a whiskey thing, who knows, another mystery of the North I suppose. All of us were having pucker moments left and right. The only way to really ride this stuff is to be very agggressive and carry speed. Not an easy thing to get comfy with as I promise your bars will try to wretch free from your hands and your bike will make snakey shapes. But at about 90 km/h + you get less of them, they just become much more intense:evil

    With the sun getting low we found an excellent gravel pit that provided some shelter from the wind. We set up camp, got a fire going, ate some more boil in the bag, well most did, I just couldnt do it again. I really hate that stuff, a granola bar and some peanuts were my dinner. No beer or wine.....bad planning:cry

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    Chris fiddles with his new battery

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    The views were outstanding as we watched the sun drop and a truely spectacular sunset. We had 270 degree views of the sky looking down on a river valley with some nice hills as a back drop.
    NOTE: not many places to camp along this road where you can get flat spots for tents due to all the brush. Another 20 km or so there is a nice spot at a river bridge.

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    A great day, this road is a bikers dream :clap Total Mileage for the day 530 km.
    #49
  10. donnymoto

    donnymoto Long timer

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    :poser
    #50
  11. ChrisP

    ChrisP Knobbed

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    With spare battery on-hand (in pannier!) and fingers crossed we set out for the Trans-Taiga. Please oh please let the tired battery be the problem and not leave me stranded hundreds of km from anything..

    Ted was confident we'd get the bike going one way or another and promised not to leave me to the bears. Probably :)

    Because the road kicked up a fair amount of dust, we generally rode spaced out (physically! ok, maybe mentally as well..) by up to a km or few.. but on the long straight sections waited to make sure that a headlight was still alive somewhere behind us before moving on.

    Imagine if you will Wile E Coyote watching RoadRunner off in the distance.. a small speeding spot followed by a giant dust cloud- and that's exactly what we looked like. Even so, many a kilometre was spent feeling the grit between your teeth, and all our visors ended up quite sandblasted and scratched by the end (both inside and out!). Early morning or late afternoon, with the sun low in the sky, the scratches made it quite difficult to actually see where you were going!

    While sections of the road were quite hard there were often ridges of soft gravel and the shoulders were especially soft. They'd grab the tires and try to squeeze you off into the bushes. Look far ahead and concentrate on where you want to end up, do NOT look down at the soft stuff or you are sure to get eaten.

    Just stopping to take a picture would sometimes result in a fright as the low speed and soft gravel tried to throw the bike over (see the wiggly tire mark left below from when I pulled over for a break).

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    That evening I had just enough time to swap batteries and ride around for 5 minutes before it got dark. New battery works ok, we'll see what happens in the morning!

    Things To Bring this time of year: Warm Clothing! Notice a few of us are wearing wool toque's and staying close to the fire.. (and not just because we're follically challenged!)
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    #51
  12. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Woke to a crisp, chilly, sunny morning. "You have got to be kidding me, the air mattress leaked and my left hip feels like I slept on ice", arg.




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    The river valley below us was full of fog and made for some nice scenery. We quickly packed up and hit the road.

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    That beautiful fog became a nightmare. Add in some dust and it wasn't long before everyone was pulled over wiping the insides and out of their visors. After a half hour to an hour the fog lifted and we were rewarded with perfect blue skies and rising temperatures. The road was in great condition and even had some straight stretches. Made some good time.

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    The last 50 km's or so were supposed to be only suitable for 4x4's. Unfortunately this wasnt the case although the road did get a bit rockier and narrower. John blew a fork seal and Chris lost a pannier. I came around a corner and Chris's bike was facing the wrong direction and gear was scatterred down the road. "All you alright?" he was and the pannier was alll bent up, nothing a rock couldnt fix. Dan had a huge cinch down strap that was used to re attach the pannier and off we go.

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    We ran into an inmate up there, Throttlemeister. A quick hello, how are ya. We had had a few messages back and forth and had planned to hook up for a day or two's riding together but the timing was off. John is heading down to South America on a year long ride, safe travels:clap


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    Near the end of the road you come to a bunch of hunting lodges and what not. A few km's past there the dam's gate was open and we road the dam and side trails for about another 10 km to the end of the road. Nothing fancy after all that travelling, the road just stops.

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    We took some photos and had a drink from the lake. "Where the heck is John and Dan, they were right behnd us not too long ago" "Must be taking photos" "If they dont show up soon I'll go back and see where they are" "Hey here they are now, hey they look pissed off" :eek1 Accident

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    The last stretch of road.

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    Met these lads who are Americans, planes drop off the hunters kills of caribou and they clean the antlers, salt the meat then transport it back to the states, something about saving on duty at the border or something. He says the herd is about 400 km north and is 400 000 strong this year. They offer one way flights up there for free. the charge to come back is a few thousand bukcs though. The plane flies empty up there, me......a 400 km hike threw the tundra...no thanks.

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    Love this road, if you like fast smooth gravel this is the road for you. It is a classic!!!


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    More great riding on the way back to Mirage with the exception of the last 50 km. It would seem this graded section got even dustier and now we had the sun in our eyes to contend with. I come flying around this one corner at speed with both wheels sliding, yehaa, then oh man look at the size of that rock. Because I was sliding and its such loose gravel avoiding the rock was not an option. Heck I'll jump it, compress the forks and pull up at the right moment and yehaa...air time! Ah crap landing....made it but just barely, its hard to land in this loose stuff going so fast, eceptially going around a corner. After the next corner I slow down and stop to catch my breath. No I didnt shit myself but it must have been close. I did dent my front rim pretty good. Tire held the bead and the tube didnt get a pinch flat :D Along comes Stephen screeching to ahalt "man you should have seen the rock I just squared!", same rock and he had the same dented rim as me :clap 1350 km long road and we both dent our rims on the same rock, mystery of the north.
    Well we got to Mirage and the sun was dropping, we were going to push on another 150 km and camp but the thought of a hot shower, real food and cold beer was to tempting for all of us.
    Mirage isnt cheap but I would recommend it. $129 bucks gets ya a private room with shared bathrooms, a great all you can eat dinner, all you can eat breakfast and a bagged lunch for the next day. Excellent food, nice people and a nice place all around. A couple of cold beers and a whiskey and I couldnt keep my eyes open.
    A challenging day for sure, dusty, slippery, bumpy and all around good fun. Total km for the day was about 580 km all gravel.

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    #52
  13. ChrisP

    ChrisP Knobbed

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    Day6

    Two sleeping bags made all the difference and I think I had the best night's sleep on the whole trip!

    Morning awoke to a nice even coating of ice covering the tent and motorcycles.. and with one press of the starter, the Funduro roared to life! The new battery did the trick :clap

    The rising sun was nice and warm and quickly melted the ice, and our campsite was nice and high above the fog-filled valley below.

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    Apart from scattering my pannier contents all over the road :doh when one decided to jump off while doing 90+ km/h, the drive down and back went pretty well.

    Fog, dust, grit, sun, soft graded sections, nice hard sections, dropping the bike while turning around in a parking lot.. just another day on the Trans-Taiga!

    Cars were few and far between.. but at one point we came around a corner and some small car completely wrapped in bubble wrap? foam? went by the other way. WTF?

    Back at Mirage we caught up with it:
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    The driver, a photographer up here to check things out, was warned that his car would get pummeled by gravel.. so he totally wrapped it up!

    Finally, heading to bed that night, I couldn't help but notice the signs they had posted all over the place..

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    It made sleeping that night oh-so-care-free!
    #53
  14. motoexpedition

    motoexpedition n00b

    Joined:
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    Hey guys,
    Great ride report...I've been waiting for this one.


    I did the Trans-Lab Hwy from Montreal last year in mid-May...I froze the whole way up and the rain didn't let up until I reached Quebec City on the way back...I actually ran into snow patches.

    The Taiiga Road was definitely next on my list but I ended up heading out West to complete the Dempster Hwy as the initial leg of my PanAm Adv.

    I didn't realize the Taiiga Road was that isolated. I LOVE IT!!!! I''ll head up there in the spring as I leave PanAm in Sept.



    If you guys, or anyone else for that matter, are looking for another Northern Quebec Adv, I must suggest Schefferville.

    I tried heading up when I was there last May but that road is where I started running into snow on the road, so I turned back... 1ft deep wet snow, heavy rain, and the halfway mark is also the halfway mark of my fuel supply (KLR).

    There is a 75km section of road missing (doesn't exist) however there is a railway available. The road ends in a small summer cottage town (diserted in spring w/ no supplies) where the railway continues North until the road FROM Schefferville intersects it 75km later. Trains only run 2 days of the week and the official schedule can be obtained from the trainlines company.

    This is the Northernmost Point reachable by Motorbike in Eastearn Canada.


    Thanks for the report guys, Ride Long.
    #54
  15. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    I would not ride the TT in Spring IMHO, but would wait until late August/early Sept, then PanAm in Central America should also be much better riding temps after these times...just a thought

    When I was up at Radisson a few weeks ago and was talking with one of the helicopter pilots(who's also is bush pilot and rider), for Whapchiwem Helicopters Limited with a base in the town, and the guy mentioned the ultimate Northern loop would be to ride the TT road and then charter an Air Saguenay Otter or twin Otter, depend on how many bikes, and ferry over to Schefferville where you could fuel up heavy and ride the RR row down to Esker where there is a perfectly good road to Churchill Falls that they used heavily during the hydro plant's construction.
    If you weren't up for that kind of adventure you could just as easily fly down to Wabush/Lab City instead. If I would have know or researched it before I went up I would have been all over it. Would be best to have at least 3 bikes to break up the cost of the Otter I would think. Just a nice riding idea....

    Contact Lisa at Air Saguenay in Caniapiscau at 1 418 780 4073 for a quote if you really want to have a wild ride.

    It's possbile to ride the whole TT one direction back to Radisson in one day and reach cold beer and highspeed wifi but I would have enjoyed riding out another way to Esker after a little plane ride, sometimes the roads are just real long deadends:wink:
    #55
  16. StinkyCheese

    StinkyCheese Red or Green?

    Joined:
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    Las Cruces, NM
    What a great RR and adventure! Really enjoyed it guys.

    Cheers!

    :clap :clap :clap
    #56
  17. dammitdave

    dammitdave Long timer

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    Great Ride Report Guys!!! Facinating part of Canada and sorry about our appetite for your natural resources. Here in the West BC was being clearcut to supply the housing bubble. (That should slow down for a while...) Love the big vistas and the feeling of isolation conveyed in your report. There is beauty in every landscape, thanks for sharing it. Dave
    #57
  18. motoexpedition

    motoexpedition n00b

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    That's exactly where I turned back...Esker is 180km from Churchill (Gas). There is a french forum that contains the report of 3 or 4 guys that made it up to Schefferville...You should see the flats they got...One guy got a Railroad pin (giant nails to hold the track down) through his rear tire...Unbelievable picture...I'll try to find the link.

    The Otter idea sounds fantastic...I'm in if you guys are interested next year...My brother too (2 KLRs).

    Quebec's Hwy 389 is a fantastic ride as well...it would be a great spin around the province.

    It's too bad that all the roads to the north are dead-ends...except Goose Bay, but I was 1 month too early for the ferries to Newfoundland.
    #58
  19. Quantis

    Quantis Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Ottawa
    Day 6 - To the end and back

    Today started off as cold as any other day. Frost covering anything still hidden in shadows. In a routine now we broke camp and packed up our bikes, taking turns to climb up on a big rock to shake out our tents to remove both frost and gravel. In the mean time I rolled my bike out from the shadow of a hill of rocks into the sun to help melt some of the frost that had formed on my seat.

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    (Thank's for the idea Ted)


    Chris' bike with it's shiny new battery started first try and we breathed a sigh of relief as we set off for out next great destination. Once we had left the nice gravel pit and descended into the lower areas we quickly discovered that every valley was filled with thick soupy fog that coated both sides of our visors and slowed us to a crawl. Eventually the sun did come up and we picked up speed as the fog burned off.

    That's when I came over a small rise to see the contents of Chris' pannier spread over the road. "Oh Shit" I'm thinking as I slam on the breaks and ask him what happened. With the weight of a battery and gas Chris' home made pannier came lose and spread its contents across the road.
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    A few straps later it was all re-attached.
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    Then we hooked up with Throttlemeister! Here's Dan giving autographs.
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    We knew we were close when we started having to cross the huge rock piles.
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    And this huge spillway that had been blasted out.
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    We all grouped up for a team shot as we made it to the end of the Trans Tiaga. YAY! now we only have 666Km of dirt to get out of here.
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    Me at the end
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    End of the TT. If you come bring a marker to sign this. And a ADV sticker (I forgot mine)
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    After that we stopped at Air Saguenay and filled up with gas. $1.90/L Ouch! but better than running out half way home. While waiting to fill up a blackfly got in my helmate and took a chunk out of my eyelid. Had me worried it was going to swell shut but it never got that bad.
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    Cruising back to Mirage after driving into the sun all morning then turning around and driving into the sun all afternoon we were all a bit burnt and worn out. As the shadows got lower and lower I came to a blind hill that was covered in shadows. I slowed a bit because I couldn't see over it then bam, I was airborn! A rock I didn't see had launched me in the air. I knew right away it was bad so I slammed on the breaks and made a quick inspection of my bike. There was still air in the tires and I couldn't hear it leaking. Rims look ok. Tires are still ok. I thought I was luck and headed out. Meeting up with Ted, it turns out we had both squared the same rock. I check again and sure enough I had dented my front rim. DAMMIT!!!! Not much I can do now. Then we had a nice 40+Km of soft graded road to welcome us to our home for the night at Mirage. Every muscle aching in my body I gladly paied the $127CDN for a room and meals then sat sipping beers on the patio between long showers.
    #59
  20. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Merrickville, Canada
    Mirage serves breakfast from 7 to 8 then the gas opens at 8. An early morning and HUGE breakfast, packed a lunch to go (damn eating real food was a treat!). The goal for today was to ride the rest of the TT out (358km) then find somewhere to camp on the JBR.





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    We decided to meet at km 202 for a regroup and headed out. This was hands down my favourite day or riding. Doing 150 +km sections with no one around and just really cracking the throttle. 6th 5th 6th 4th gear was the rythem for the day. A few moments stand out, top end of 5th gear, back wheel spinning and kicked out around the corners, dakar moments. Prior to this trip there was no way I would even consider sliding around corners with a fully loaded bike. After days on end of getting used to the graded stuff I was feeling like a champ. Top end of 6th gear full out down the straights, watching the road about .5 km ahead, ignoring the ridges and loose stuff, this will be etched in my memory for a long time. Amazing how fast we all were compared to three days prior on the way in.

    We regrouped at the rest area at km 202 and then headed out for another 150 km section. Ever had the perfect day on a bike? This was mine :clap



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    I was leading the way and stopped after an hour or so to let the others catch up. The sun was shining and it was getting warm outside. I had a quick power nap on the side of the road. 15 minutes to recharge the brain. Travelling at these speeds requires mass concentration.

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    Another very fast 50 or so km's to the end. The first stop sign in 3 days. I felt like it deserved a photo.

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    We regrouped at a pre arranged rest area a few km's down the Jmaes Bay Road. Felt real weird to be travelling on pavement....kinda boring as it requires next to no concentration. We decided to camp that night at the Rupert River as we had heard from others that it was a nice spot to spend the night. Not sure of the milage but I think its around 200 to 300 km's from where we were.

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    James Bay Road is a blast! 600 km's long of what becomes a twisty at anything over 130 km/h. Dan started to showing me cornering techniques he aquired from his years of track riding. All of a sudden corners that were scetchy at 130 were completly doable at 150 :D Burnt some serious gas along this stretch of highway and made very good time. I saw speeds I had yet to do on the KTM and was really enjoying hanging off the bike and gassing the heck out of it around corners and down the straights. Pure fun :clap

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    Got to the Rupert about an hour before sunset and admired the view from the bridge.

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    At the scenic view pull over we got swarmed by blackflies, every other night of the trip temps would drop to below or at the freezing mark, tonight the forecast was for a low of +14 C. Well it didnt take long before they were in my mouth nose and ears. An easy choice was made......lets get the heck outta here. "How far is it to the next town?" "260 or so km's" "Lets do it" . John wasnt privy to this choice as he was out scouting for a camp site. His tailbone was killing him on his stock seat and I could easily anticipate his reaction, it was a bout what I thought it might be. "WTF...I seriosuly dont know if I can go any further" Well Stephen and Chris had already bolted and there was hno way I was spending the night getting eaten alive all night. John took it like a champ, said he'd catch up after a quick rest. We agreed to meet in an hour or so down the road.

    We pulled over and watched the sunset and waited for eveyone to regroup. Well John comes blazing by and doesnt even stop or wave :eek1 "Man he must be pissed". Turns out he got his 3rd wind and pushed straight on to Matagami.

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    Well those black flies became a nightmare once the sun set. You dont dare wipe your visor in fear of the dreaded smear. Visibility was near zero for the last part of the ride which made for a wee bit of stress at the end of a long day. Got to matagami and booked into a hotel that has a bar and a restaurant, yehaa more real food :D

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    Everyone unpacked and had some grub. Dan and mayself moved over to the bar slash disco tech to see some local flavour. Well we didnt even know it existed but we found the elusive Northern Quebec Leopard ! We had heard tales of it before but thought it must be all lies. Leopards dont exist in Canada. Well here she was in all her glory. A skin tight leopard skinned outfit with big cuts outs on the stomach chest and sides. Now this leopard had eatin fairly well by the looks of things and each one of these cutouts was complimented by bulging chucks of fat. It was so damn revolting it was funny. Thought about getting her to pose on the bikes for some photos but after looking around realized it would not be the best plan. This bar was brutal, about 50 young guys all hitting on 5 cougars. The cougars spent most of their night chain smoking, 2 were pregnant but this didnt seem to stop their love for the tabacoo. If you end up in this bar I suspect you would have to fight to get laid as that seemed to be the look of how things worked around there. Now that we were below the 52nd paralel Dan was out of his element and didnt even get a smile:cry A few beers and some whiskey before crashing for the night.

    Total distance for the day was about 950 km's, 360 of them being freshly graded gravel.

    Day 8

    Not much to tell here, we packed up early and hit the road for home. A nice drive down some scenic roads. It took a while to get used to traffic and seeing cops again. A long tiring drive, no more concentrating on gravel, no more crazy high speeds, just sitting in a line of traffic making our way home. This was for me the most tiring day, took every thing I had not to fall asleep on the bike. Tried to capture how tired I was at one rest area.




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    The highlight of the trip home was finally getting to a Tim Hortons for that coffee that us Canadians love so much. Dan looking very excited.

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    Total mileage for the day was about 700 km's.

    We said our fairwells and exchanged some handshakes about an hour out of the city before we all headed in different directions bound for home.

    A truely great week. The weather was great, roads were fun, ticked our three ticks that we had planned, everyone got along well, fun to meet some new people and see a part our country not many get to see.

    In all we covered about 4800 km in the week, 1900 km's of which were gravel. We asked the lady at Mirage Outfitters how many bikes pass threw each year. She said this was a very busy year, including us she guessed about 20 had done this road this year. A guess at less than 200 in total have ridden this road.

    We all agreed we would do a trip next year, Trans Lab and the Newfoundland T-Rail seemed to be on everyone's mind......time wil tell. Thanks for tagging along, its been fun writing this report and kind of reliving the trip. Adios
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