Victoria BC to Yukon, Alaska, and back

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Markaso del Norte, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. gunnerbuck

    gunnerbuck Island Hopper

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,140
    Location:
    N.V.I, B.C.
    I like your story and the good mix of pictures to help tell it, keep it coming...
    #21
  2. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    Day eight starts off with a shower for me and the Wee. I let the dew dry off the tent before packing up. back into Dawson for breakfast, at a bakery cafe. They mass produce breakfast sandwiches, that are very popular. Very busy place. I sit at the little bar, and wolf my food, and drink my coffee. Today I would be riding up into Tombstone National park, up the Dempster Hwy. I would take a side trip up to another massive gold dredger, not far out of town.One last ride around town, down the backstreets a couple of laps, then head out. The road to the Dredger snakes off the hwy, and soon I come to a little place where you can pan for gold etc...
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    this dredger is massive, i almost took a tour, but it was long and I wanted to get going. pretty interesting story on these gold dredgers. They were all built near where they were used. Looks like this one saw lots of action. The area creeks around Dawson city had all been dredged buy this big guy. All the materials were hauled up by ship train. steamship etc..
    I left and made my way back to the main road. A few Kms down the road is the Dempster Hwy junction. There is a lodge there with a gas station, and a cafe. I fueled up here, and took a few pics of the entrance to the Dempser.
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    I was stoked to head up the Dempster, I had been reading all about it for months before the trip. I had to make my most painful decision of the trip today, Ride to Inuvik, or at least to the Arctic Circle, or ride into Tombstone, and do some hiking/ exploring, and have a short day on the bike. What a tough decision. I was not sure I had enough time to ride the entire way to Inuvik and back. Most people take two days in, and back out. I was really torn, I wished I had someone else here with me to make the decision. In the end I decided to ride to Tombstone Park, and set up camp.
    The mountains around here have a red hue to them, and are bare of trees for the most part. The road is in great shape, and I fly to my destination.
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    The road in;
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    Tombstone park is large, and there is a lot to see. I arrived at the Park interprative center, and looked around inside for a while. pretty informative place. i left to find a campsite, just down the road.
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    Found a nice secluded spot, right beside the Klondike river. The view was incredible. I was now happy to be spending some time here. The weather was sunny, and warm, what a great day and place to be alive:D
    I set up camp,
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    and grab some fire wood, I decide to take a walk down to the river through a little trail off my campsite.
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    I take a longer walk around the campground, and find a trail worth exploring.
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    It winds its way along the river, and I continue for a long ways, until I am all alone. Lots of cool vegetation growing here;
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    My butt is happy to be off the bike now, and i am feeling relaxed! walk along the river and there are places to walk out across it a bit, with stepping stones, and little dividing channels.
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    I return to my campite, and have some lunch. looking around I am overwhelmed at the scenery. This is one of the highlights of the trip, just being here and chilling out for a few hours. Eventually I succumb to the bike calling me, and its time to do some two wheeled exploring:D I could see the road climbing up a hill from my walk, so I head up there to check out the view;
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    The jagged peak in the distance is Tombstone mountain. here it is close up;
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    and one more time:lol3
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    I seem to have a big smile on my face:D
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    I must like it here....Down the road a few more Kms looks like this;
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    I keep heading north, the scenery is awesome. I am having a blast just exploring, and stopping lots to take pictures. The bike feels agile, without all my gear on it, I can go as fast or slow as I want. I only see a few cars along the way.
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    Some of the sights along the way;

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    I have been out riding for several hours now, there is lots of light left, and I am having way to much fun. i wish I had someone to share this experience with:cry But I get over it fast:D

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    I am cruising along taking in the scenery, I come to a marsh area, ride by this sight! I kill the bike, so I don't spook them, and coast a bit further down the road, and come to a stop, and back track to where I get these pictures;

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    I took a bunch more but these are the best ones. finally I see Moose:clap I sat and watched them for a while, mom sent her calf away for a bit, but he came back to be close to mom. What a sight. I decide to leave them alone to dine on marsh grass, and walk back to the bike. A pickup truck pulls up, and I worry they will shoot the moose! Turns out they are a first nations family from Inuvik, heading to Whitehorse for supplies. we talk about the moose for a bit, and they ask me what I doing out here, with no gear on my bike. I tell them I am camping at Tombstone, and they seem relieved, that I am not suicidal:lol3
    We wish each other a safe trip and they head south, I continue north. Just uo from where I see the moose, I come to a lake; The name seems fitting;
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    Self portrait timer shot;

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    Further down the road;

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    The northern boundary of Tombstone park;

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    I see a trail leading down to the river the road follows, and ride down it to take some pics;

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    I get back on the main road and ride a bit further north. Its getting late by now, about 9:00pm, I don't want to turn back just yet. I still have maybe two hours before it gets dark, but I don't want to push my luck out here.
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    By the time I took this picture I have turned around and started heading back. I see a wolf crossing the road ahead of me, but it hides in the brush when I try to get a picture, and is gone. It was to large to be a coyote, I have seen lots of those before.
    I see a trail head sign going up a steep side road, so I decide to check it out;
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    A great view from here, Goldensides looks like a great trail.

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    i ride back down to the main road again, and make my way back to the campsite, its about 10:00pm now, still lots of light left:D
    A couple more pics; This one is still my on my computer screen, one of my favorite pics of this trip.

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    At this view point you can ride down below the sign, and have a bit of fun;

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    Back at camp, time for a late dinner. I was hungry, so i cooked up some food, and relaxed.
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    The view from my spot.
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    Ok maybe i was starting to get a little lonely;:lol3
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    The fire was nice and warm, it was really starting to get cold when the sun goes gone this far north.

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    This next picture was taken around 11:00pm;
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    I went to bed around midnight. another great day. Tomorrow I would start making my way south, and homeward. I did think about finding gas from a camper, and heading up the Dempster to Inuvik though:evil
    Dawson to Tombstone park and beyond, about 300km.
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    #22
  3. HPTuner

    HPTuner Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Oddometer:
    347
    Location:
    Southeast Ga.
    This is a great report, you're doing an excellent job!
    #23
  4. squiffynimrod

    squiffynimrod maximum shrinkage

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
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    1,682
    Location:
    Flatskatchewan
    Where's the green with envy smiley?

    Great RR, outstanding pics. What are you using for a camera?
    #24
  5. willys

    willys Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,937
    I've ridden from Toronto to the D2D twice and have loved the far north ever since...it truly is a magical place that just gets under your skin and forces you to return! I have been to many of the places in your pics and love to be reminded of the fantastic time I've had riding to them. The top three places you mention are the best I have seen so far in my riding experiences.
    Thanks for the ride report and for bringing back these great memories!
    Please keep it coming....I hope to get back there in 2014......it is just too spectacular to stay away from.

    Thanks again.......:deal:clap
    #25
  6. RevyRider

    RevyRider Intrepid Traveler

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    130
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    I am enjoying your excellant ride report, the pictures are great and so is your intresting narration. I must do this trip as well. Thanks for sharing.

    Cheers

    RR
    #26
  7. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    Thanks for the replies, I am looking forward to doing this ride over again, only taking more time.
    Camera used is a Panasonic DMC-series with a 20x optical lens.
    Plan to make this trip happen, It will be a great experience!
    Cheers,
    Mark.
    #27
  8. Saralou

    Saralou Worldwide Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2,330
    Location:
    July 22, 2012 start RTW from Vancouver, B.C.
    Hey looks like you had an amazing time! Nice to see you had much better weather than we did on the Dempster. Really good pictures too.


    Sara
    #28
  9. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    Yes the weather was good up there, the forecast was changing to rain up Inuvik, one of the reasons I didnt want to ride up there on my own.
    I know, I talked myself out of it.:cry
    #29
  10. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    Day nine starts off with me shivering inside my warm sleeping bag. It was a cold night, but I pulled my sleeping bag up over my head, and slept with my thermal under layer on.
    I pulled my self out of the tent, and made coffee, started a fire, and heated up some instant oatmeal for breakfast. I still wanted to find gas and head up the Dempster. The weather forecast was turning to rain, so that helped me decide to save it for another ride. Plus, there was still places south I wanted to visit. So I decided I would begin heading southward, beginning my trip home.:cry
    Time constraints suck, but I knew that going into this trip, and I was happy to have accomplished what I had so far.
    There were few campers up this early, It was a surreal morning being this far north. I love this place, I find it spiritual, and I am not a religious man, But being up in the wilderness, or up in the mountains, I feel alive:D
    I am not ready to leave this place yet, but I want to make it to Whitehorse by days end, so I slowly pack up. I take a walk down to the river, and contemplate life for a bit. Okay time to get moving. It has warmed up, the sun is out, though there is more clouds than earlier, time to ride!
    I get out to the Dempster, and stop to take a picture;
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    I fly down the Dempster, a little frustrated for heading south, instead of north.
    I get to the junction, and the gas station, and top up my bike. Hmmm, now I have enough gas to get to Eagle plains, which is the halfway point to Inuvik. My mind id already made up though, and I am heading to Whitehorse. While I am filling up the bike , a guy on a KTM Adventure pulls up. He had just come from Inuvik, and had been pushing hard to make it back. We talked for a while, and headed out in the same direction,
    After riding up the Dempster, the scenery to Whitehorse is not to exciting, I rode hard all day, stopping for gas and a butt break once every couple of hours. The road was a blur that day, I passed through a few settlements, not much along this route. (The Klondike hwy). I came close to running out of gas, I did the chin on tank bag tuck for many kms,
    and I made it to fuel. I had lunch in Carmacks, and kept rolling. The only thing that was interesting was following the Yukon, and I hoped Whitehorse had something to interest me. After a long day of riding hard, I rolled into Whitehorse, Yukon. I cruised through town checking things out. I would look around, for a bit, grab some food, and look for a place to stay. I ended up down by the river at a big park, and found this old paddle wheeler;
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    They had a tent set up with a cool video of life during the gold rush, some archival footage of trips up the Yukon river, on these paddle wheelers.
    They were just closing up boat tours, so I didn't get a chance to get on board. Next time. Whitehorse is a pretty cool little town, I was tired though, and decided to cruise through on the way back to the highway, and look for a campground. Some how I miss the campgrounds in Whitehorse, no problem, I will keep going. I see a sign for the road south to Carcross, where I had passed through on my way to Skagway. The road was good, and away from Whitehorse, was more interesting to ride.

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    I found this big map at a pullout;
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    And just down the road aways, I came to The worlds smallest desert:lol3 Turns out its an old lake bed, but still a pretty cool place;
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    I decide to take a hike out into the sand. I see some quad tracks through the sand. It would be a blast to rip it up, but that would be wrong:wink: There are some species of plant that only grow in a few places in the world here.
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    If its a desert, why do I still have my gear on? Its gotta be the most northerly desert in the world?
    Very cool walking around here. I continue on to Carcross, just down the road.
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    Carcross is worth a visit if you are passing by. I ride to my favorite bakery, but its closed:cry I missed it by one hour.
    By now I need to find food, and a place to eat, preferably in the same place. The former RV park at the junction to Carcross is closed down, but some first nations women come up to me, and tell me to follow the road to Tagish. I had passed through there earlier on the trip, and knew the way. I came to a place with a sign out front, camping and food! Yes:D
    I ride in, and I am greeted by a couple of big guys on Harleys sitting around having dinner. The place is right on the Tagish river, perfect spot. I soon meet the owner, and her daughters in the kitchen. I order a beer, and a big bowl of pasta, perfect. I am welcome to set up my tent, near the lake beside a Teepee.
    The bikers, leave, but friends of the owners are visiting, and the ask me to join them. Soon I was one of the gang, turns out I grew up in the same area in Vancouver as one of the friends, so we got along well; One beer turned into several, then the tequila shots came out:freaky

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    These people were way to much fun. Their hospitality was incredible, they made me feel at home. They also run a place in Panama, where they spend the winter months.(smart) The place is called; Six Mile River Resort.Doug and Mitch, are the owners. Stop in and say Hi, I highly recommend them.
    When the sun went down, the party ended, decided to explore the area.
    I could have stayed in the teepee, but it smelled a little damp;
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    The sign says it all:D
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    Sunset over Tagish;
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    Turned out to be a pretty good day, and a great place to end up! Mas tequila por favor!:1drink

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    Day nine comes to an end. Tombstone park to Tagish approx 620 kms.

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    #30
  11. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    Day Ten Starts off with another sunny day:D man have I been lucky with the weather this trip. I have only had one and a half days of rain.
    I grab a shower in the new facilities at the Six Mile river Resort. I get to met Doug the owner, who was out fishing until late. Doug is a biker, and has a Harley, parked at the resort. He shows me around , and I help him get one of his vintage tractors running. I take a few more pictures, pack up , and say goodbye.
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    My destination is Atlin, BC. Its directly south of Tagish, and the road is exceptional. It rolls through forest, and changes from good pavement to rough pavement, then dirt. Beautiful country, lots of up and downs. I see some huge bears along the way, moving quickly across the road, as they here me approaching. They must eat well around here, they are the largest bears I see on the trip.:eek1
    After cruising through the forest the road opens up at Atlin lake. Beautiful glacier fed shade of blue, with mountains surrounding the lake. Its very picturesque here. I am having a great ride, until I hit road construction. I have to wait for a pilot vehicle. I ask the sign girl, if she will ask the pilot vehicle to go a little quicker, so I can keep my momentum up, as the frash grading is about six inches deep. Its a bit skecthy in a few areas, but i get through okay. After a while I roll into the town of Atlin. Its right on the lake. Its like a picture of the alps, or maybe the Rockies. Some pictures;
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    Some of the old buildings of Atlin;

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    And another with the bike in it;:wink:

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    I ride around the small town, and take lots of pictures. I ask a few people where I can find a good place to eat lunch, and find a small museum. The outside yard;
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    What a backdrop!

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    Lots of pics, I know, but I though this place was pretty cool, I really like it here.

    I find the place to eat lunch, and every one in town seems to be eating here. I order a clubhouse sandwich, and grab a table on the patio. Its nice and warm out side, and after an hour of chillaxing, and trying to eat my huge lunch, I feel like I am getting a sunburn!:lol3
    I could spend several days here easily, the kayaks on the lake were very tempting. There are a few hotels here, they are trying to bring in the tourists here, and some locals told me they are trying to have the road paved, as the tour buses wont use the existing dirt/ rough paved road:cry. The road in was a blast, and I was ready to ride it back out.
    said goodbye to Atlin, and headed back up the road out. I took a side road to a campground, and it led to camping on a smaller lake. I saw one camper in the whole place. I thought about spending the night here, but its still early, and I remembered those huge bears I saw on the way in. i took a ride around the campground, there were some lakefront sites, and also some in the surrounding forest. I had fun doing a few laps through the trees;

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    On the way in to Atlin, I flew buy a small shack on the side of the road, I thought I would now check it out;
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    Trading post? I have to check this place out;

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    I go inside, and there are trinkets on shelves that people have traded. A
    Yukon license plate catches my eye, and I decide to make it a souvenir. I trade it for an unused water bottle, that has been taken up space in my saddlebag. Cool. The license plate is now on my garage wall.

    The paved part of the Atlin road;
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    I get back to the hwy east, and start making my way towards Watson Lake. Four hours later, I arrive back in Nugget city, where the start of My Yukon adventure began. I rolled up to the Hungry wolf cafe. And ordered a roast beef feast:clap
    A couple of beers, and dessert, and I was feeling better. The RV/ campground is right next door. I sent up camp in the tent area, and meet a couple of guys from Australia, who have been riding their bikes around North America for months. Nice!
    The campground has a big shelter with wi-fi, so I catch up on emails.
    Tomorrow, Watson Lake is just down the road, then I leave the Yukon, and make my way through Northern BC.
    Tagish to Atlin, and back, approx 200kms. Tagish to Nugget city, approx 380 Kms.
    Another long day in the saddle. My ass is killing me:lol3

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    #31
  12. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    I woke up to a cold morning, but the sun was again out, it was going to be another stellar day:D I recall hearing what turned out to be a young moose calling out to its mother in the night. It was an eerie cry, kind of haunting, especially in a tent, as it sounded close by.
    After a quick shower, I walked over to the Hungry Wolf cafe for a big breakfast, to start the day off right. This was my last day in the Yukon, and I was going to miss this area a lot:cry
    After breakfast, I packed up the bike, and said goodbye to the to guys from Australia, that were camped next to me. I rolled out of the campground
    heading east towards Watson Lake. I had to check out the world famous sign post forest;
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    There are signs everywhere here, its a pretty cool place to check out. Some of the signs go back to the building of the Alaska Hwy, in the 1940s. I walk through the rows of signs, wishing I had one to put up, but maybe on my next visit.
    After a pit stop to get gas and air, I head out down the Alaska Hwy, towards BC.
    There is no traffic, just a great road, I plan on making good time today.
    I pass through the Yukon/BC border, and say adios to The Yukon. Its has been a great ride through, I will definately be back.
    Rolling through Northern BC again, the landscape is open plains, I can see the Northern Rockies getting closer. The road follows the Liard river.
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    After maybe 100kms, I start to look for the famous Wood Bison, that wander this area grazing along the roadside. I had been warned about these big guys, by other bikers I had met, and knew they were in the area. Soon I found one all alone;
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    Not sure if he was a scout, or had been kiked out of the heard. He was no where near the rest of the herd, which I found miles further down the road.
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    I came to this spot where the river is running fast, there is a rest stop here;
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    After a few more KMs I ran across more Wood Bison;
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    These guys stopped traffic for a few minutes. They could care less about vehicles, and unfortunately tend to get hit by vehicles all to often, despite all the signs warning traffic to be aware:huh
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    I got off the bike a few times, to photograph these guys, but the head bull will consider you a threat to the herd, and will come towards you. I never was charged by a bull, but it can happen, and these big animals can run fast if they want to. I would keep the bike running just in case, I needed to make a quick getaway, I wasn't taking any chances!:lol3
    Dont do any thing to piss this guys off!
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    I had planned to check out the Liard river hot springs, but when I rode up, there were lots of people there, including a few tour buses. I kept going. The Rockies were getting close, and the scenery starts getting better!
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    This is Muncho Lake;
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    The road around the lake is lots of fun, I pulled over lots to take pictures.
    Just in time for a lunch break, I arrive at the Toad River Lodge;
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    This is an interesting place. The history of the building of the Alaska Hwy, is all over the walls, with some pictures of the constuction. I am eating my lunch,and The four seniors at the table across from me are talking about the old days, and turns out one of the guys was part of the crew based near here in the forties, building the Hwy! How cool is that! I join in, and get some insight from these folks, to what life was like up here back then. Also in the cafe were four guys from europe, riding rented BMW GS650's They spoke very little english, and we didnt communicate very well. They left well before I did, and I took note that they were heading the same direction as I was:evil
    I wished the seniors well, and I left The Toad river Lodge feeling good.
    From the lodge the road was still interesting, and it winds through the Northern Rockies, there are lots of long unpaved sections, and even the paved sections looked like gravel.
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    A while later I could see four bikes up ahead, hmmmm, time to reel them in.:wink:
    I catch the four BMW riders, one by one, and they all seem surprised. I wave at each one as I blow past, but I dont get a wave back from any of them. I catch the last two on an unpaved section, and they dont seem to like eating my dust:evil
    I laugh as they try to catch me, they have all bunched up now, I can see them in my mirrors. They follow me for miles, I keep them in the distance, and finally they give up the chase, their single cylinder engines are no match for the mighty wee v twin:lol3. Good fun, I had to entertain my self some how, its a long ride!
    After hours of riding, I roll into Fort Nelson. This is where sane people would stop for the day, but not me. I cruise through town, doesnt interest me, I dont even stop to top up the gas tank. (Big mistake)
    I decide to keep going, as its only around 4:00pm. I am tired by now, but the road is like a magnet, and pulls me forward:lol3
    Hours roll by, I see signs for gas ahead, but the gas station is closed, next gas 50km. I get to the next place, gas station shut down. Oh shit, now what I am running on fumes. I continue on, head on tank bag to increase mileage. I picture myself running out of gas in the middle of nowhere, and camping beside the highway. I somehow keep going, and come to yet another gas stop. this one is open, but the sign on the pumps say no gas until tomorrow:eek1
    I go inside,and ask if there is any where I can get gas. The woman behind the counter says there is a work camp across the road, I might be able to get gas from there. I go to the workcamp, and see a gas pump.:D A guy comes out of the bulding and starts filling up my tank. I look at the price, and it says $1.70 per liter:eek1 Holy shit thats some pricy regular. I am happy to pay it at this point, relieved, I dont have to camp on the side of the road. I follow the guy into the building to pay, and I get to see whats it like at a gas workcamp. You can smell the gas in the air everwhere around here, from Fort Nelson, to Fort ST John.
    There are workcamps everywhere, they have taken over all the old motels, and ones still in operation. and set up workcamps. I ask the guy if he knows if there is camping near by, and he points to a sign just down the road. I say thanks, and cruise by the campground, but keep riding. I pass a few more campspots , but I am joined to the bike now, and keep moving. Buy now, I hear a strange noise coming from the back Wheel. I pull over to check it out, and see my chain guard dangling in the breeze. It has been rubbing into the chain, but still in one piece. I wire it up, as one of the screws is gone, press on. The sun has gone down, and its cooling off. I see a sign for Fort St John, and decided I can make it all the way there.
    It gets dark about 50 kms from town, and I see deer eyes glowing in my headlights. Yikes, I need to stop. Finally I arrive in Fort St John, and roll into the first RV/campground I see. I walk into the office, and the guy there looks at me for a bit, and says, you have been pushing it pretty hard havn't you? Then begins to tell me how stupid it is to ride at night up here, as there are animals all over the road. I agree with him, and he says have a good night. He was actually a really good guy. I set up camp in the dark, and have some boil in a bag food for dinner, wow my butt is killing me1:D Why I cant stop earlier, when my body is telling me to, I dont know. At this point I am ready to sleep in my own bed.
    What a day, Watson lake to Fort St John, approx 893 KMs, 11 hours in the saddle! ouch:lol3
    [​IMG]
    #32
  13. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    I awake to morning in Fort St John. I can still smell gas, smells like propane. Turns out its the first day of hunting season, which explains why I was lucky to find a campsite last night.
    After a shower, and charging my iphone, its time to pack up and hit the road. I could really use a day off, I have ridden every day, mostly long days in the saddle. My goal was to ride to Dawson Creek, the start of the Alaska Hwy, or the end for me, as I was riding from top to bottom. From Dawson Creek, I will head to Prince George, then south to my goal, Lac La Hache. From there, I know I can make it home the next day.
    I roll through Fort St John, and find a road side cafe for some breakfast, and coffee.
    The ride to Dawson Creek does not take to long, and I arrive and ride through town. I looked for The Start of the Alaska Hwy sign, but somehow miss it. I find myself heading west of of town. This area looks a lot like the prairies;
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    After passing the wind turbines, the road begins to get gradually more interesting.
    I am back on Hwy 97, riding a section I have not been on before.
    It begins to wind through some nice valleys, and mountain areas. I am having too much fun to stop and take any pictures. I roll through Chetwynd, BC. and Keep going. This part of Hwy 97 is probably the most scenic, and the road is a blast. Eventually I come to Prince George, where I have completed my loop of Northern BC. Wow this province is massive, but what a great loop!
    I stop at a gas station/ food market, fill up the tank. They are baking fresh pizzas inside, so I get a couple of slices, and take it outside to eat at a picinic table. It's hot down here, and I am riding back into the southern BC heat wave, I head left behind almost a couple of weeks ago.
    The further south I get, the hotter the day gets. The Hwy south of Prince George has little to interest me, and eventually I roll into Quesnel. I need gas, and like everytime I fill up, I take my magnetic tank bag off and put it on the back of the bike. This time I fill up, and have a look at my chainguard, check tire pressure, and lube the chain. I ride away, and pull out onto the hwy. About ten KMs down the road, I look down, and realize my tank bag is missing!:eek1 WTF! I realize what has happened, and do a quick U-turn , and start scanning the road back towards the gas station. Now there is a ditch running beside the hwy, all the way back into Quesnel. I fear its fallen into this ditch, and I wont find. I arrive back at the gas station. No one has turned it in there, so I am fuming mad at myself by this time:baldy
    Inside my tank bag are my newish iphone, my favorite ball cap, and a bunch of other things I would prefer not to lose. Luckily my wallet, and camera are in my jacket pocket. I leave the gas station, and realize the tank bag probably fell off in the intersection, getting back onto the highway. Its nowhere to be seen, so I continue on hoping to find it down the road. I get back to the point where I realized it was missing, and, I pray some one finds it, and finds my phone inside, and is nice enough to call my home.:lol3
    I ride on to my destination for the night, a provincial park beside Lac La Hache. (which is a long lake) The campground is pretty quiet, and I pick a spot. The sun is going down quickly by this time, so I set up camp quickly, and have my last bag of Mountain house dehydrated food. Mmmm good. I am still frustrated at losing my tankbag, (which I bought for this trip), and all its belongings. The day is done, I have to be hopefull someone found my bag. I try to go to sleep without losing sleep over it. Its been another hot, long day, I am tired, and once again, my butt is killing me!!!
    Fort St John to Lac La Hache, approx 800kms.
    [​IMG]
    #33
  14. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    It start the final morning of my trip, with the last of my coffee, and pack up and hit the road. I plan on taking my time today. I had ridden from here back home a few years prior, on my Triumph Bonneville, so I knew how long it would take. I stop for breakfast in 100 Mile house, at Tim Hortons.
    Soon, I am heading south down Hwy 97. I am lucky this morning not to get a speeding ticket, a police cruiser, ended up pulling over a car that had passed me, and I was doing 120kms an hour.
    The turn off to my next road came up, and I looked forward to riding Highway 99 south towards Whistler/Blackcomb, then on to the ferry terminal At Horseshoe bay. It was another smoking hot day today, and once again I pass through Lilooet, which is always Hot!
    Iget through town as quickly as possible. and make my way up the steep windy road that heads towards Whistler. I am in the groove, and having a blast along this stretch of hwy.
    Only one picture today. at the pullout looking over Duffey Lake.
    [​IMG]
    I arrive eventually in Peberton, having been held up by road construction, along the way. fuel up the bike and the body. my credit card wont work, here, I think it is maxed out, and I was trying to be cheap. Most of it was spent on fuel, I used cash for food, camping etc.. Oh well be home soon. Pemberton to Whistler is still scenic, but more traffic as well, keeps the pace down. I decide to take it easy from here home, I dont want to take any chances, as I am so close to home now.
    I arrive at the ferry terminal, and have to wait a couple hours for the ferry. Its smoking hot in the sun, in the line up for the ferry. i have to go find shade. I head into the villiage of Horseshoe bay, and find a pub with a nice big sun deck. i pick a table with shade, and order a beer, and some lunch. what a great place to kill a couple of hours. I can watch the ferries coming and going.
    As I sit here, I start thinking about my trip, and how amazing it has been.
    I am still getting over losing my tankbag, but I can live without everything in it, if I have to.
    My ferry arrives, by now there are 25 bikes in the line up, and we all ride onto the ferry.
    The crossing is pleasant, I spend most of it out on the upper sun decks, enjoying the ocean breeze. I cant believe how hot it is even on the ocean. We get to Vancouver Island about 7:30pm. I still have an hour and a half of riding to home, but It is cooler now, and I savour the last leg of my trip. When I pull up at my house, my wife comes running out to greet me, and is grateful I am still alive:D I get a big hug and lots of kisses:clap:clap!
    She begins to tell me how someone found my tankbag in Quesnel, and had craked open the watertight case, that held my phone etc...The guy who found it had called the worst person to call in my contacts, my father. He is the biggest worry wart there is!:huh
    He ended up calling my wife who freaked out. She thought I had crashed, and my tankbag was found:eek1
    (I had tried to call her from a pay phone, but had no luck.) I told her my story, and she settled down. Turns out the fellow who found my tank
    bag was a really good guy, and was going to mail it down to me!
    We received the bag a week later, and everything was intact! Tough bag! We sent the fellow, and his wife a gift card to say thanks!
    What a great way to end the trip!:clap, approx 613kms.
    [​IMG]
    Final day of trip done!
    Lac La Hache to Victoria BC
    I am eternally thankful to all those great people who live up north, and who helped me out along the way. Its the people you meet, who make a trip memorable.
    I realized I have a guardian angel who takes care of me. The bike ran perfectly, I had 0 flats, mechanically, lost the front bolt that holds on the chain guard.:rofl When I went to change my air filter, I found a dozen bees in it! :lol3 Pretty successful trip, and I cant wait to head north again.
    North will have to wait though, as I want to point the Bike south, for my next big trip!
    Thanks for following along. I cant say enough how awesome a trip this is, and if you are thinking of doing it, JUST DO IT:wink:
    Mark.
    #34
  15. ParaMud

    ParaMud Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Oddometer:
    639
    Location:
    Orange, CA
    Great write up, added 2 places on my map to go on my trip this summer.
    #35
  16. HPTuner

    HPTuner Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Oddometer:
    347
    Location:
    Southeast Ga.
    Awesome report! Really appreciate you taking the time to share. You had some of the best pictures I have seen in ride reports. I will certainly be looking for your next trip! :thumb
    #36
  17. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    Hey HP,
    thanks for the positive feedback! I have been wanting to do this rr for a while. writing it brings back all the good times. I cant wait to do some more long trips, its addictive! I want to head to Mexico next winter for at least a month:wink:
    #37
  18. Markaso del Norte

    Markaso del Norte Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Victoria BC Canada
    Hey Paramud,
    Thanks for the feedback!. I will try to get back up north, in a couple of summers!
    #38
  19. TigerXC

    TigerXC Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 28, 2012
    Oddometer:
    87
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    Very nice RR and pictures. You managed to highlight our 'backyard' well. Good to hear that you have your tank bag back.
    #39
  20. squiffynimrod

    squiffynimrod maximum shrinkage

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,682
    Location:
    Flatskatchewan
    Tankbag karma!!
    #40