Virginia to Alaska and back on an '86 Yamaha Radian

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by ruffntuff, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. Bmblbee

    Bmblbee Dust Monkey

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2008
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    AZ Heat
    It is very possible to get good poutine outside of Quebec-or even Canada, for that matter. Down here in the desert, there is a restaurant that does a damned good poutine-and I've had it in Vancouver, Montreal and Toronto.

    It's a bit like the no true Scotsman fallacy.
  2. KansasKawboy

    KansasKawboy KK

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    Outside Kansas City
  3. Dirigo

    Dirigo Curious

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    Jan 31, 2012
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    Birmingham, AL
    I started reading this yesterday morning and just now caught up. I can say that I absolutey achieved NOTHING at work during this time. However, as I left the office and got on the bike I somehow felt that it was my most enjoyable day at work. I laughed out loud, found goosebumps and even felt my eyes get a little itch (not misty or anything mind you!). Everything between thoughs of your brother to cleavage juice and farts has left me excited for the next installment.
    Thank you Anna!!!

    :clap:clap:clap
  4. Super T

    Super T Ridge Runner

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    SW Virginia
  5. slowarc

    slowarc Whiskey Tango

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    Ozark Bliss
    I found this RR from a link in the basement. Best ever.
  6. merickk

    merickk Living Folk Tale

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    Now 20 miles south of Colorado
    My wife dosen't get the whole ADV thing, but last night when I was telling her about your RR she did comment "Now that is one woman I do want to meet"

    :thumb Keep the updates comming.
  7. skian g

    skian g Adventurer

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    Nov 4, 2010
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    Reading, Pa
    EPIC. The one word I can use to describe this report. The writing with its adjectives, the ride itself, and most importantly the emotions... Its all Epic. I haven't read anything like it and it will be hard for anything to approach this level.

    Cant wait for the remainder, and can only hope we get the same treatment on future adventures.
  8. oldNbold

    oldNbold Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2013
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    137
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    stranded in Iowa
    Cant remember where I found out about this thread. This RR is why I joined the forum.
  9. jgarp99

    jgarp99 Been here awhile

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    Sep 3, 2008
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    Rome, GA
    Awesome.. thank you so much for posting this RR
  10. theBullseye

    theBullseye Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 28, 2013
    Oddometer:
    15
    Awesome read !!!
    My buddy and I had just finished our 10 day (June 23-July2,2013)- 4650 km journey to Vancouver Island -Prince Rupert- Stewart BC/Hyder Alaska -Prince George -and back home to Alberta. (we too endured rain -about 80 % of our ride time was in rain) So I could relate to portions of your travels.

    You truly have a gift....to put simple pleasures to words. (Like riding a motorcycle and being at peace). I am stuck to your ride report and look forward to more !!!! I can relate soooooo much to your feelings and commentary on riding. I am so glad I found your RR...it made me laugh, it made me cry, totally wondering what was happening next. It had me glued to the computer !!! Non-bike moments were entertaining and appreciated. THANK YOU !!
    Please continue riding and writing !!!!
  11. Akunin

    Akunin Neo-Vegabond

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    May 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    130
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    here and there
    Seeing that Radian sure brought back memories. :) Mine lasted several cross country trips before I even thought of taking pictures and sharing with others. Can't wait for an update! Thanks for the ride so far
  12. MaverickChick

    MaverickChick I do my own stunts.

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2008
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    Northern Utah
    Thanks for making my Tuesday better. :clap

    :lurk
  13. ruffntuff

    ruffntuff TUFRDR

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Oddometer:
    114
    Location:
    Charlottesville, Virginia
    Vancouver, BC - San Juan Island, WA: 132 miles
    June 30, 2012

    I followed 99 south leaving the rain in Vancouver behind me. It wasn’t long before I made it to the tail end of parked cars waiting to cross the border into Washington. The sun came out and I began to feel warm. That was a first.

    Even the bike began to sputter with no wind keeping it cool. Although I felt I hadn’t been sitting there long enough for it to overheat already. It had only been a few minutes and it sounded like it was going to stall. I kept the throttle slightly open to keep her running.

    When I got to the booth I showed my passport and was only there for a minute before getting waved through. It’s funny how every time I crossed into Canada, I had to remove my helmet and answer a billion questions. But every time I crossed back into the U.S., I only had to show my passport and that was it. I wonder what it’s like for Canadian’s vice versa.

    As much as I loved Canada, there was something comforting about crossing the U.S. border. The main reassuring thing was I probably wouldn’t need the Roto-Pax anymore. After getting on I-5, gas stations would be too frequent to be a concern anymore, and fuel would be cheaper.

    Also, my droid would be more reliable for directions, and there would be no more international roaming charges on my phone. That shit got expensive. I think I had a $400 bill for the two weeks I was in Vancouver.

    I settled into the pace of I-5 and it wasn’t five minutes before I started to feel the bike losing power. I opened the throttle more but it choked and coughed, slowing down. I felt as if it was running out of gas although I knew it had plenty. I pulled over quickly to the right lane as it chugged and lurched and cars flew by.

    I got to the shoulder and it spit a few times before finally stalling. I double checked the gas and tried to restart. The engine would turn but it just wouldn’t fire. I was officially broken down on the side of the highway.

    I tried not to panic and called Bee, praying he’d pick up. He answered right away, always my savior, eager to hear how I was, where I was, assuming something was wrong since I was calling.

    After explaining what happened he told me to turn the petcock to prime and try again. The engine rolled over several times and fired up. Sigh of relief. He said to turn the switch back to on and see what happens down the road.

    I got back on the highway, this time cautiously sticking to the right lane. In just a couple minutes I lost power again with no fuel reaching the bike. I pulled over defeated and called Bee again.

    He explained to me how the prime bypasses a hose from the petcock to the carburetors and if it wouldn’t run with the petcock on, something was wrong with the hose. He said to keep the petcock on prime and ride it like that until I could get off the road and check the hose when the bike was cool.

    I returned to the highway, this time smooth sailing. I felt so lucky to have such a reliable friend.

    The next time I stopped for gas I decided to investigate a little further. I pulled the face off the petcock and sure enough I could immediately see the hose connected to the second carburetor was split at the end. It looked like a simple fix to me. There was plenty hose left. All I would have to do is trim the end off and stick it back on the carburetor.

    [​IMG]

    I called Bee to let him know. I was happy to see it would be an easy fix I could do myself. I still had 100 miles however to get to San Juan island, but Bee reassured me it would be fine to ride the bike that far on prime. It was better to get where I was going and fix it once it sat for the night.

    So I stuck to the plan and headed for Anacortes. It was a little after 6:00 when I got to the ferry terminal. The next ferry departing for San Juan wasn’t until 8:20. So I purchased my ticket and rode downtown to scout around for a place to grab some grub.

    I found a cute pizza joint in the center of town, Village Pizza, and settled for a pepperoni, pineapple, jalapeno calzone and a refreshing local beer on tap from Anacortes Brewery. Unfortunately I can’t remember the name of the beer I had but it and the calzone were both stellar.

    While eating dinner I checked the Droid for hostels and camping on San Juan. I found Wayfarer’s Rest hostel located close to the ferry terminal in Friday Harbor and called for a reservation knowing it would be late and dark by the time I got there. I didn’t feel like pitching a tent or traveling far once I arrived.

    The ferry ride was quick and easy. It was just thirty minutes or so and I enjoyed a beautiful sunset and rainbow on the way. I met a couple other riders on board that I chatted with for a bit and got some suggestions on roads to ride. There aren’t very many on the island, but they did mention if I had time, to go to Orcas Island. It was more mountainous and entertaining for a motorcyclist they said. Maybe I can do that on my way back.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The hostel was a cute large house, a little pricey at $35/night but very clean and beautifully landscaped. I shared a room with three other girls from all over the world; France, China, and Argentina. It was nice having some company for the evening and I got some more tips on things to do on the island.

    [​IMG]

    There was no WiFi, but I grabbed a map of the island on the ferry and studied it overnight. I wanted to ride to the west coast tomorrow and camp at the place Billy told me about in San Juan Park where I would be certain to see orcas.

    But first, I would have some minor bike repairs to do. Until then, good night.

    [​IMG]
  14. ruffntuff

    ruffntuff TUFRDR

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Oddometer:
    114
    Location:
    Charlottesville, Virginia
    Sorry guys....it's been WAY too long. Thanks for waiting.

    anna
  15. Bogfarth

    Bogfarth Fridge Magnet Safety Tester

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2011
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    Location:
    The Northwet

    Take your time; some stories don't like to be rushed.

    :bubba :lurk :1drink
  16. Klay

    Klay dreaming adventurer

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    Nov 19, 2005
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    right here on my thermarest
    No matter, we're quite pleased with your story.
  17. tvbh40a

    tvbh40a PSUViking

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    Aug 30, 2004
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    Location:
    Idaho home of the fiesta bowl champ BSU bronco's
    What wait?
    You are worth it my dear, as most women are.:lol3
  18. dirtdreamer50

    dirtdreamer50 long time rider

    Joined:
    May 12, 2010
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    Location:
    texas coast
    I realize that for you, these are just memories, but for the rest of us, it happens as you tell us your story. We know you made it back ok, but for your followers, you are still out there, daily riding. Thanks for sharing....tomp dd50
  19. Klay

    Klay dreaming adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
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    Location:
    right here on my thermarest
    Still so sorry about the loss of your brother, Anna.
  20. Blader54

    Blader54 Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,201
    No worries, Anna. This is ancient history to you ... having taken place over a year ago, and it's understandable that you might find it tough to find the time to write it up and post it. I'm glad you did though, because your RR appears to have had quite an effect on your readers and they (and I) would love to hear the rest of the story. Thanks for posting an update!