Wandering Around Alaska and Northern Canada in June 2007

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by H-Jay, Jul 21, 2007.

  1. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    THE PLAN<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    Loosely the “Plan” is to take 4-6 weeks and wander around <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State>. I do have some specific destinations in mind. I recognize my weakness from my TV watching habit of flipping through channels with the remote wondering what else is on. I invariably miss all the good stuff. It seems to me that <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State>’s scale can be overwhelming. So without a few “must see” and “must do”, I’d likely just ride right by Telegraph Creek, The Kennicott Mines, and more. Two “must dos” are the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street> up to the Prudhoe Bay and <st1:place w:st="on">Inuvik</st1:place> in the Northwest Territories of Canada. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    My initial plan was to go it alone and maybe hook up with riders on the way. I got an e-mail from the GSNerd through the Adventure Rider web site about a month before leaving. We met and decided to hook up. I think we were both a little apprehensive but that turned out to be completely unwarranted. My daughters were shocked that I would agree to hook up with someone I met on the internet. They referred to him as “Dad’s My Space Buddy”. I told them I was shocked that he actually turned out to be a middle-aged man and not some underage female. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    As it turned out GSNerd lives only 5 miles from me and recently got his GS. We probable would have met in person soon since the population of BMW GS riders in the area is small and we normally stop to meet each other. Anyway, GSNerd turned out to be a great road companion and I enjoyed his company. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    THE REASON TAKING A MOTORCYCLE TRIP TO <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">ALASKA</st1:place></st1:State>?<o:p></o:p>
    … because its there, its close to the top of the world, and I want to see it. Its also a good excuse for getting up each morning and doing what I love… riding! That’s all the reason I needed for taking a Motorcycle trip to <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State>. Seems no matter how I explain “why” I would want to ride a Motorcycle to <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State>, the response would be either a faint smile or that distant look. You’ve seen the distant look. It’s the one where the person is trying to hide any facial expressions that might disclose what they are really thinking. Well that’s not entirely true. Some people were thrilled about the adventure. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    When I took an early retirement last year I got 2 copies of the popular “1000 Places To See Before You Die”. I checked all 2000 places in both books. None of them included a Motorcycle trip to the Arctic Ocean or Inuvik in <st1:country-region w:st="on">Canada</st1:country-region>’s <st1:place w:st="on">Northwest Territory</st1:place>. Maybe that explains the distant looks. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    THE RIDE<o:p></o:p>
    The ride is a R1200GS, my first BMW. Its aesthetic ugliness and functional beauty attracted me. Its often called the SUV of motorcycles. Its functionality and performance made it easy to abandon my slick, menacing looking, loud and underpowered previous ride. Now I have a Motorcycle, not a bike, that only a Moose would give a second look. I think its sort of “Cool as a Moose”, to borrow the <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Maine</st1:place></st1:State> store’s name.

    <o:p>Track l – Getting to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    So after walking my youngest daughter down the aisle, handing her off to new husband and I’ll add a wonderful son –in-law, saying good by to friends and family in town for the wedding, I kissed my wife goodbye and headed off with my new “My Space Buddy” GSNerd.

    Up early ready to ride

    [​IMG]

    Waiting for my buddy
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    He's arrived...

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    Bye to the wife ...

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    and we are off!

    [​IMG]


    We headed up through the <st1:State w:st="on">Michigan</st1:State>’s Upper Peninsula and spent our first night in a nice little campground just past <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Duluth</st1:City>, <st1:State w:st="on">Minnesota</st1:State></st1:place>. It was hard to believe after about 12 months planning the trip was finally underway. <o:p></o:p>

    Well on day 2 we decided to take a 200 miles detour and drop down to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Minneapolis</st1:place></st1:City> so GS Nerd could get some new tires.

    [​IMG]

    That night we got several recommendations to stay in the campground in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fargo</st1:place></st1:City>. Flooding from the recent rains so it wasn’t meant to be… off to the local KOA. <o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]


    We blasted across I-94 until we got a local recommendation to take 200s/200 across <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Montana</st1:place></st1:State>. Turned out to be a good recommendation for us but not for the rabbit that managed to get sliced in 2 by my front tire. The route is scenic, mostly straight with a lot of ups and downs for some good whoops. I didn’t know <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Montana</st1:place></st1:State> had its own “Bad Lands” moonscape. It was beautiful in the eerie <st1:place w:st="on">Badlands</st1:place> landscape look. There’s few towns and people on the road. You can do 90 – 100 mph all day long if you wanted. It was all good till we ran in to a downpour. As we rode, we could see serious storms north and south of us. As it got dark, the rain closed in on us. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We were told about a truck stop off 200 that had a little campground out back. The truck stop turned out to be a bar … straight out of a scene from the Blues Brother’s country western gig. We took a pass and rode on to the next town, <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Lewiston</st1:place></st1:City>. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    As we got in to little town of <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Lewiston</st1:place></st1:City> we started looking for a place to camp, as the rain continued. We came up with only 2 choices, a vacant pad in a trailer park for $15 or the local Rotary club’s free camp space. So, we decided to get out of the rain and grab some food at the local pizza shop named LBM Pizza and consider our lousy options. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    As we finished gobbling down a pizza and beer, a couple came in to the restaurant and sat down near us. They overheard us joking about our lousy choices and offered to put us up for the night. We no thanked them and headed out into the rain. As we were suiting up, John, the restaurant owner came out to the parking lot and told us the couple sincerely wanted us to stay with them. John explained that they were good people, they have a finished basement with its own bathroom, etc. Long story short we took them up on their generosity. Meet Dr Dale and Sandy. <o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    Dale even pulled his truck out of the garage and turned his garage heater on so we could get our motorcycles and gear in out of the rain to dry. Before we went to bed, they told us that they both had to get up early and for us to pull the door shut as we leave. … I could not believe it. This would never happen in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Detroit</st1:place></st1:City>…. Dale’s only explanation was we tend to trust people ‘till they give us a reason not to. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Again, thanks Dale and Sandy and Dale I hope you enjoy your “Fly In” this summer to the <st1:place w:st="on">Midwest</st1:place>. <o:p></o:p>



    After a big western breakfast and a look around <st1:City w:st="on">Lewiston</st1:City>, we headed up to <st1:City w:st="on">Great Falls</st1:City>, Babb, the Blackfoot Indian Reservation (route 17) and in to the eastern tip of <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Glacier</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">National Park</st1:placeType></st1:place>. We entered <st1:country-region w:st="on">Canada</st1:country-region> at the <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Chief</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Mountain</st1:placeType></st1:place> boarder crossing. Here’s some pictures of the ride from <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Lewiston</st1:place></st1:City> to the boarder.<o:p></o:p>

    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]
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    Entering Glacier National
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    Lotsa fire damage
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    The animals in the foreground give a sense of the mountain's scale
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    ...and finally in to Canada
    [​IMG]


    It was an easy entry. We should thank the young kid that had a car full of electronic stuff. I guess he thought he’d get less of a hassle at one of the isolated crossings. The agents had a field day on him. We got asked a few questions. They wanted to see my Bear spray and welcomed us to <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Canada</st1:place></st1:country-region>. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    On good advice from AdvRider we went up through Pincher creek to 22North to avoid <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Calgary</st1:place></st1:City> traffic. That night we found a nice campground at the Chain of Lakes Park. It had a food concession on the grounds that took care of our desire not to cook. I struck up a conversation with the woman running the concession. I was curious how she ended up in ..as she described it.. the middle of nowhere. Turns out she was from <st1:place w:st="on">Trinidad</st1:place>. She and her husband moved there to raise horses. They have a ranch across the road from the park. She invited us over to see the ranch and meet her husband, son and nephew. We had a good time looking around and having a beer with the “Wild Cowboy” as he called himself. I forgot how many acres they had but it was in the thousands and the number of horses was in the hundreds. Their closes neighbor is 5 miles away. The wild cowboy was building a huge stable and guesthouse. His plan is to start a dude ranch for those wanting to do the “City Slicker” thing. Unfortunately, my battery ran down so I only got a couple of pictures. She made the same comment as Dale in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Lewiston</st1:place></st1:City>… “Out here you tend to trust people more”. She knew since she previously lived in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Miami</st1:place></st1:City> and NYC.

    [​IMG]
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    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
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    <o:p>[​IMG] </o:p>
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    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The Wild Cowboy told us about a scenic dirt/gravel road that runs parallel to Route 22 between the <st1:place w:st="on">Rockies</st1:place> and the foothills. It turned out to be a wonderful road that followed a little river. GSNerd and I boned up on dirt roads before tackle the <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Dalton</st1:place></st1:City> and Dempster. Here's some shots from the road.

    [​IMG]

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    <o:p>Here comes GSNerd kicking up the gravel....</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>gotta be a magazine cover shot for the sport!</o:p>
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    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
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    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
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    <o:p>These guys must have a death wish as they dart across the road at the wrong time!</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    </o:p>
    #1
  2. Spicy McHaggis

    Spicy McHaggis Darth Peach's cracker...

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,789
    Location:
    Grand Haven, Michigan
    :lurk
    #2
  3. Lobby

    Lobby Viel Spass, Vato!

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2003
    Oddometer:
    29,838
    Location:
    San Antonio, Tx
    :clap

    :lurk
    #3
  4. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    Cont.

    The road ended at the beginning of the road to <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:placeName w:st="on">Kananaskis</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Village</st1:placeType> and the mountain pass to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Banff</st1:place></st1:City>. Unfortunately the pass didn’t open till June 15. That caused us to take a 3 ½ hour ride to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Banff</st1:place></st1:City> vs. 1 ½ hours over the pass.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    We stopped in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Banff</st1:place></st1:City> to eat. I found <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Banff</st1:place></st1:City> too touristy for my taste. It was recommended that we get off the autobahn section of the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Ice Parkway</st1:address></st1:Street> as soon as we leave <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Banff</st1:place></st1:City> and take 1A. 1A is a great little 2 laner that runs parallel to the divided highway portion of the Parkway. It took us to the Johnson Canyon Campground where we spent the night. We found a spot next to a couple on a GS. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The couple on the GS was from <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Switzerland</st1:place></st1:country-region> and, as it turns out, has been on the road for the past 26 months. We talked well in to the evening as they told us about their journey. They rode to <st1:country-region w:st="on">Russia</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Turkey</st1:country-region>, down though <st1:country-region w:st="on">Iran</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Pakistan</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">India</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Thailand</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Indonesia</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Australia</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">New Zealand</st1:country-region>, <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Seattle</st1:place></st1:City> and up to where we met them. Interestingly, Ivo said it was cheaper to fly his motorcycle across the oceans. They would just show up at the airport with their bike. Jacqueline had me rolling on the ground as she described riding through <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">India</st1:place></st1:country-region> beating on the hoods of cars with a stick to keep them back. Next up is <st1:place w:st="on">South America</st1:place>. Their story would be familiar to others we would hear. “…Had the dream to do it, sold everything and went for it. Will figure out what’s next when we get to that bridge…”<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Met Ivo and Jacqueline and their GS 80 with 120k + miles on the odo. <o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Continuing up the 1A.
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    Close enough to a bear for me....
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    And stopped at Lake Louise to take pictures of the tourist taking their obligatory <st1:place w:st="on">Lake Louise</st1:place> photo. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    GSNerd was an instant Asian chick magnet. They all wanted to climb aboard GS, the Motorcycle that is, for a photo opt.

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    Here’s another shot from the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Ice Parkway</st1:address></st1:Street> as we headed up to Jasper and the start of the <st1:place w:st="on">Alaska Highway</st1:place> <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>We saw our first bear at an appropriate distance of about 2 miles away. </o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]<o:p></o:p></o:p>
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    Snow in June?
    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
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    <o:p></o:p>This puddle is not what you think…. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    This was the melting remains of a little parking lot excursion through a snow bank … in June!<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    On the <st1:place w:st="on">Alaska Highway</st1:place> – finally!<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]

    We made it to <st1:place w:st="on">Fort Nelson</st1:place> for the night and pulled in to the West End Campground. The Christmas lights on the PVC drain pipe should have been a warning. Caution: Venting to follow!

    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
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    I made my self a promise that while on the trip I would not let anything bother me. But I gotta push the promise pause button for a second. <st1:place w:st="on">Fort Nelson</st1:place>’s West End Campground was the absolute worse campground and dinner experience of the entire trip. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    Here is GSNerd trying to set up his tent and get in to it without exposing any skin.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The Mosquitoes were atrocious because of the campground’s lack of ground maintenance, including regular grass cutting and adequate drainage. We might as well have stayed in a swamp. The overgrown grass was freshly cut and laid there in large moisture holding clumps. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The campground had a restaurant/bar on the grounds that advertised a dinner special. We decided to treat ourselves to a big dinner indoors. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Here is the saloon restaurant where we ate.<o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]

    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    I had an unbelievably, overpriced Prime Rib and lousy service at this restaurant. It was advertised as the “Not Ready for Prime Time Prime Rib Special” and I should have believed them.

    Here are the 2 Paris Nicol wannabes that need help on bar tending and waiting tables. Looks can only make up for so much.

    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    When the cashier asked how was everything I bit my lip and calmly explained that I didn’t think beef rind qualified as prime rib. A little jerk sitting on the bar stool next to the cashier offered that they gave me the best part. Again with blood running down my bit lip and remembering my promise, I told him calmly I had 2 words for him and they aren’t “happy motoring!”. He just looked at me with a stupid looking grin. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Enough venting …. I’d will avoid this place at all cost in the future.



    <o:p></o:p>
    #4
  5. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    Cont.

    Traveling to <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Whitehorse</st1:place></st1:City>, the next day made up for the shoe leather dinner and night in the swamp! <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Here is a guy from <st1:country-region w:st="on">Germany</st1:country-region> we met at a fuel stop that is on his 13<SUP>th</SUP> trip to Northern Canada and <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State> on his Thumper.

    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>

    The name of this little Restaurant made more sense after traveling up the road further. I got some wildlife and scenic landscape pictures. Saw a lot more.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>

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    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>

    Muncho Lake

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    I had heard a lot of grumbling that the <st1:place w:st="on">Alaska Highway</st1:place> was boring. I thought some of it was. But the section between <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Summit</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Lake</st1:placeType></st1:place> and Muncho was magnificent. It also had an unbelievable amount of wildlife along the road and breathtaking landscapes.

    [​IMG]

    A stop at Sally's at the 37 Junction was well worth it. Also we signed the AdvRider log book.

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    One of the few places that didn't serve dogs --- not that I eat them.
    [​IMG]

    At <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Whitehorse</st1:place></st1:City> we stayed at the highly recommended at Robert Service Tent campground just outside of town. The recommendation was spot on. Clean, well kept, can pull your bike right up to a nice tent pad and best of all no big RV generators running all night. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We camped next to 3 guys from <st1:City w:st="on">Juneau</st1:City> that were bicycling a big triangle from <st1:City w:st="on">Juneau</st1:City> to <st1:City w:st="on">Whitehorse</st1:City> to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Skagway</st1:place></st1:City>. I’ve got a lot of respect for the people that pedal up some of those mountain passes.

    Here is Jean, his brother and a friend.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The next day we were off to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City>. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p><o:p>He's how to ruin your day. The trailer included a motorcycle, maybe a Harley and an ATV. Both burned beyond recognition. </o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p>This Mile Marker is well protected</o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    I made my first gas mistake. As we crossed the boarder, I figured gas stations would be more frequent and passed up the stations just north of the boarder. I assumed there would be a station at the <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Dawson</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">City</st1:placeType></st1:place> junction, well within our range. Well there was a station but it was closed. I made it to about ¼ mile from the first station in Tok, the next town. Incidently for any 1200 riders my miles-to-empty was a zero for about 15 more miles. My little MSR bottle of fuel saved the day. After gassing we eat at the highly recommended Fast Eddies.
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>This is an interesting story. This bridge was dedicated to the black veterans of the Army Corp of Engineers that helped built the <st1:place w:st="on">Alaska Highway</st1:place> during WW2. They were mostly from the south so the weather had to be a shock. They were segregated, of course, and proved equally capable of constructing the road as their white counterparts. They initially engineered and built a wood bridge over this river, much to the surprise of the officers. Its since been replaced by this steel structure.
    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>

    About 3 weeks before we departed I had made arrangements with The Outpost Harley dealership to get us fixed up with some knobby tires. I had initially called the famous George Rahn of Trails End BMW. He told me he was turning his business over to the Outpost Harley Dealership and a guy name Scooter, from the dealership, was handling customers. I talked to Scooter and of course, he wanted to know when I would be arriving to schedule an appointment! I’ll be traveling 4000 miles - Duh! he insisted. I figured it would take us a week to get to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City> so I told them June 11. We were a little behind our schedule because of the extra dirt road trip we took in <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Canada</st1:place></st1:country-region>. So I was worried that we would have to wait several days before getting our knobbies and being able to take off to <st1:place w:st="on">Prudhoe Bay</st1:place>. <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on"></st1:place></st1:City>
    <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City> Finally<o:p></o:p>
    We arrived in <st1:City w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:City> late evening and checked in to the River Edge Campground out near the Airport and right on the river that runs through <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City>. It’s a really nice full service campground. It also happens to be right across the highway from the Outpost dealership. I did notice a state park campground close in the area. We needed showers and laundry so River Edge worked.

    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p><o:p>Our view from the Campsite. </o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    #5
  6. Mark_Redrock

    Mark_Redrock My Ears are Ringing

    Joined:
    May 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    360
    Location:
    Southern Utah
    Wow, awesome trip guys!! :clap

    I can't wait to do that trip! :D (It's like porn for ADV Riders!) :eek1
    #6
  7. kildala2000

    kildala2000 The GS Store.

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2002
    Oddometer:
    2,074
    Location:
    Northern BC Canada
    Hey H-Jay & GSnerd..:D

    It's the skid plate guy saying HI. :D

    It was nice meeting you at the junction to Mannley.:D
    Did you two make it to Deadhorse?

    More pictures and keep it coming.
    Rick :D
    #7
  8. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    Cont.

    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Today is prep day for the trip up the <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Dalton Highway</st1:address></st1:Street> to Deadhorse. First order of business was Tires at Outpost Harley. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We were a couple of days late for our appointment so we didn’t know what to expect at the dealership. When we got there, we discovered what looked like at least 50 out of state Harleys in line for service. My first reaction was... we are soooo screwed. We found that the row of motorcycles were there for the start of an Iron Butt Charity ride. Whew! We got right in, got our tires and oil changes completed and were all set. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We did have an issue with the tire price. Scooter, who is handling the BMW/George transition told me they would charge list for the TKC80s. Well when the bill was added up the Scooter charged us way over Continental’s MSRP. Thanks to Jerry, the dealer’s service manage, we were able to get the pricing straightened out. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    My Motorcycle all set with new meat posing with Jerry, the service manage. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We met the guy with the beard later at the campground. He’s from <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:country-region w:st="on">Australia</st1:country-region></st1:place> and has an incredible story I’ll get to later.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Scooter was just getting the BMW dealership set up. They had only one new BMW motorcycle on the floor. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Prudhoe Bay? 50 Harley’s? Let the carnage begin! And it did!<o:p></o:p></o:p>
    Here is the row of Charity Ride Motorcycles. From my count there were 46 in all. I saw a couple GSs and a Honda Sport Touring Bike. The rest Harleys dripping with perfect chrome and paint jobs. Its an interesting story with a personal surprise for me.

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The Charity Group's plan was to ride up to Prudhoe Bay on June 19 and then down to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Key West</st1:place></st1:City> by July 7. They were raising money for the Special Olympics. The motorcycles were all shipped up from <st1:country-region w:st="on">Georgia</st1:country-region> and <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:State w:st="on">Tennessee</st1:State></st1:place> and delivered to the Outpost Dealership for the start of the ride. Jerry, the service manager told me that the company unloading the bikes dropped one. I spit coffee out laughing when he told me about the riders closely combing over their motorcycles looking for scratches after the word got around. Jerry, and other local Harley riders tried to dicourage them.

    I later talked to the ride organizer. He seemed unaware of what was ahead of him. For those not familiar with BMW GSs, they are off road/road motorcycles that were made to fall over and not get damaged .. and we know that from experience. I couldn’t image taking a chrome beauty cruiser on to the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street>.

    Fortunately they have a chase vehicle and trailer to collect up the pieces.

    [​IMG]


    AKDuc posted an article from the <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City> paper. Here is the headline and the first paragraph. <o:p></o:p>

    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>


    Bikes take a beating on the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street> http://newsminer.com/2007/06/22/7604<o:p></o:p>

    By Robinson Duffy
    Staff Writer
    Published June 22, 2007<o:p></o:p>


    The group of Lower 48 motorcyclists was told again and again that the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Dalton Highway</st1:address></st1:Street> would be murder on bikes and bodies. Truck drivers experienced with the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street>’s merciless gravel surface urged the group not to make the trip. Local Harley-Davidson owners warned of the damage that bikes would take from flying rocks and the unavoidable spills.<o:p></o:p>

    The naysayers were right.<o:p></o:p>

    A big surprise was the female rider from <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Atlanta</st1:place></st1:City> interviewed in the article is an old childhood friend. We grew up on the same street. I had not seen her in 20+ years and didn’t know she was riding. We’ve since connected. Found out she made it to <st1:City w:st="on">Key West</st1:City> and we plan to connect up in <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Atlanta</st1:City></st1:place> this fall.


    Big congratulations to her for the accomplishment!

    <o:p></o:p>
    OK, more pictures from Rivers Edge Campground.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    Here is the Australian’s Motorcycle and the tent. Interesting tent. Sort of looks like a catherdral? Don’t recall his name but he had the familiar story, had a dream, quit the job and took off to do it. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    He’s got a Paris Dakar and 1150 GS back in <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:country-region w:st="on">Australia</st1:country-region></st1:place>. However he wanted to experience <st1:place w:st="on">North America</st1:place> on a Harley. So he flew to the states and bought himself a big bagger and trailer. The Harley had a cool custom paint job complete, of course, with Kangaroos. Since October of last year he has put over 40,000 miles on his rig as he has traveled throughout the lower 48, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Canada</st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Mexico</st1:country-region> and now <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:State w:st="on">Alaska</st1:State></st1:place>. I later found out he took a number of prizes at the local Fairbanks Harley Rally over the weekend. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    Another interesting couple we met was from <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Zanesville</st1:City>, <st1:State w:st="on">Ohio</st1:State></st1:place>. His name is Van and he left his big RV back in <st1:City w:st="on">Zanesville</st1:City> and drove his CJ Jeep with a trailer up from <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Zanesville</st1:place></st1:City>. We first met them at a construction delay at <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Kluane</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Park</st1:placeType></st1:place>. Then ran in to them at a gas stop/restaurant. Then they showed up at the same campground in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City>. What a coincidence? <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Van use to live in <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:City></st1:place>. He and his wife won some real estate in a state lottery some time ago. So now he and his wife have convinced some friends to join him for the summer to help them build a summer home on the lot out in the suburbs of <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:City></st1:place>. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Here is Van his wife and their attack dog we dubbed “killer”. I hope to get an update on the house he is building. (Van---hint, hint!)

    [​IMG]


    Here is Van his wife and another couple we met at the campground. I think they were from Iowa. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Never been to a city where the classic car's cruise the local campgrounds. Quite a show. Maybe 20 cars came through.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]



    While in <st1:City w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:City> we picked up a few things we needed for the trip to the <st1:place w:st="on">Arctic</st1:place> including 1 gallon gas cans from Home Depot to use as an additional reserve. Darn Chinese gas cans! Had to return it for one that didn’t leak. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The Rivers Edge Campground let us store our excess luggage in their store room. I left my 2 side cases and compression bags since we did not plan to camp. The reduced weight made a big difference as I got use to handling the road conditions. A very good tip from others AdvRider ride reports. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    After being done with the dealership, I rode around <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City> a bit. Disappointing to see how the big box stores, including Walmart and Home Depot, have decimated old downtown <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City>. You have to look at old black and white photos to get a sense of what it use to look like just 25 years ago. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    OK so we got to <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State> in one piece. Now the trick is to stay in one piece – us and the motorcycles.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    Next: On to the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street> (<st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Dalton Highway</st1:address></st1:Street>) to Prudhoe Bay and the Dumpster (<st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Dempster Highway</st1:address></st1:Street>) to <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Inuvik</st1:City>, <st1:State w:st="on">Northwest Territories</st1:State>, <st1:country-region w:st="on">Canada</st1:country-region></st1:place>. <o:p></o:p>
    #8
  9. ADK

    ADK master of the casual pace

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2005
    Oddometer:
    8,266
    :lurk
    #9
  10. dawggawn

    dawggawn Nihilist . . . maybe

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,282
    Location:
    Over the bars
    I remember enjoying at least one other of your RRs H-Jay, this is a great one. Interesting take by the Australian guy to get a Harley. I've never pictured myself with one but after a friend just got one, it makes me ponder it a bit.

    Carry on please.
    #10
  11. Klay

    Klay dreaming adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
    Oddometer:
    106,157
    Location:
    right here on my thermarest
    :thumb

    :lurk
    #11
  12. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    It was nice meeting you and your crew. Yes we made it to Deadhorse and Inuvik. Big fun. Pictures to come.

    How was Manley Springs?

    H-Jay
    #12
  13. GB

    GB . Administrator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    61,664
    Fantastic!! :thumb Certainly an adventure of a lifetime.

    Thanks for posting

    :lurk
    #13
  14. kildala2000

    kildala2000 The GS Store.

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2002
    Oddometer:
    2,074
    Location:
    Northern BC Canada
    Hey H-Jay, :D

    How was Manley Springs? The ride was a good one & the town of 45 was very interesting (locals) We really needed a bath so the hot pools was great. We even gave the bikes a bath in the local river, really we washed the bike's at a boat launch in the river. Don't let the locals know just incase that was the drinking water. :rofl
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Don't want to hi-jack your post.
    Take Care,
    Rick :D
    #14
  15. tenbears

    tenbears Banned

    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    Oddometer:
    432
    Location:
    London, England
    Groovy... really nice stuff.

    I've decided to ride into Canada too, just makes sense.... having come up via Georgia and the infamous Deals Gap, and following the BRP & Skyline Drive up to Pennsylvania from Virginia it just made solid sense to cross into Canada at Niagra, ride the Great Lakes and drop back into the US via the Dakotas.
    #15
  16. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    Track II – Taking the <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street> and Dumpster Challenge<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    I can’t emphasize enough how much I appreciated The AdvRider ride reports as a resource to prepare for this trip. After reading everyone else’s ride reports I was finally going to see the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street> in person. And boy was it a blast! <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The weather was mostly sunny with a few down pours to make it interesting. When the sun came out the road dried up quickly. Road construction, or resurrection, was in full swing. Our earlier off road excursions in <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Canada</st1:place></st1:country-region> were good conditioning. I think I underestimated what it was like to travel 500 miles (from <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City>) mostly on dirt and gravel. The section above Atigun pass seemed to go on forever.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    I suspected the knobbies would be a lot of fun but didn’t realize how much fun they were. I could have done OK with the Tourances (street tires). The knobbies allowed me to enjoy the scenery more and act a little like a hooligan in the deep stuff. The most challenging part the first day was a construction section where big boulders were being placed on the road and rolled over to make small boulders. That day riding over them was worse than the gravel, deep dirt or mud. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Here are some pictures of the first day

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]

    I stopped to take a picture of the <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Yukon</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Bridge</st1:placeType></st1:place> and was immediately approached by security. It turned out to be a good thing because I didn’t recognize the odd looking collection of buildings across the highway included the only gas station on that section of the road. It doesn’t really look like a gas station but it is.

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Gasing up </o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>And check to make sure my back up back up gas is still there...</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    Here’s a surprise. This truck was a head of me at the gas pump. I happen to notice the Michigan Municiple license plates. Seems the driver and passengers were from <st1:placeName w:st="on">Michigan</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">State</st1:placeType> in <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State> doing environmental “research”.

    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Lots of views of the pipeline from the road. The zigzag feature is to allow for expansion, earthquakes, etc. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    We stopped at the Hot Shot just north of the <st1:place w:st="on">Yukon River</st1:place> crossing. Good food, and an entertaining stop.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Dining alfresco
    [​IMG]



    Here’s the woman that runs the place and some other pictures. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>


    GSNerd and I met 2 guys from <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Canada</st1:place></st1:country-region>. It turned out they also hang out on the AdvRider site but in the Thumper section. Here is KLR Dave’s KLR and Rhindhold’s KTM. I didn’t know KTMs had glamour paint jobs??? It really sparkles in the sun …. although the fancy paint job didn’t help Rhindhold later with his gas mileage.

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Back to the road. Rough? It looks like Your going off a cliff

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Its amazing that wild flowers florish in this environment

    [​IMG]

    Of course I had to get a picture of the famous finger rock. early bush pilots used it as guidance because it points to Fairbanks.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #16
  17. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    Cont.

    Maybe this picture doesn't really highlight the drop off on either side of the haul road. In places its close to 30 feet on either side without much of a shoulder.

    [​IMG]

    And of course the rain came

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    but it would dry out quickly when or we just rode right out of the rain

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    followed by rainbows...like magic....

    [​IMG]


    Meeting the Famous Dr. Greg and the Aerostich Tour

    Thats him on the left .
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Much to our surprise we ran in to the second annual Aerostich Anchorage to Prudhoe Bay Motorcycle Tour was underway. They were at the Coldfoot stop for the night and eating on the outdoor deck. The party included Doctor Gregory Frazier, of the 4 times around the world on a motorcycle fame and author of the <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place w:st="on"><st1:State w:st="on">Alaska</st1:State></st1:place> on a Motorcycle book and other books. Incidentally Coldfoot is another stop you can easily breeze by if not careful. The buildings are not visible from the road and the sign is a little vague on if you should immediately turn or look for it ahead. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Anyway we had a great conversation with Dr. Greg and the tour participants. Dr. Greg had some interesting stories. Good group of guys and gals on the tour all with interesting stories.

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    That night we stayed in Wiseman. Our plan was to do the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street> in 3 days with stops at Wiseman on the way up and back. Wiseman is a picturesque little town with a lot of <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alaska</st1:place></st1:State> history. We stayed at the Boreal Lodge cottage. The Boreal cottage has a loft bedroom, a second bedroom, complete kitchen, sat TV…all the comforts of home and way better than the converted crew camp trailer rooms in Coldfoot. Here’s some pictures of the Boreal Cottage and the other accommodations. I’d highly recommend it. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    A small river runs behind the cottage. Nice setting to just sit or relax. It also was a good place to wash some of the road off my boots and ridering gear.

    [​IMG]

    Here is the ajacent lodge.

    [​IMG]

    Wiesman's International Airport

    [​IMG]

    More shots from around town

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Day 2 on the <st1:Street w:st="on"><st1:address w:st="on">Haul Road</st1:address></st1:Street> was as much fun as the first. Lots of gravel, more rain storms and wildlife. Here’s some pictures.

    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    Notice the trucks seem to use the guard rails as brakes in the winter time coming down the <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Atigun</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Pass.</st1:placeType></st1:place>

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    During a rest stop on the <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Atigun</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Pass</st1:placeType></st1:place> this little critter got real curious about us and got pretty close to the gathering.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>GSNerd teasing the road evil doers. </o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Managed to dodge this down pour</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    But not this one

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Yes... these are to show my sensitive side...

    [​IMG]

    Not Much Goin’on Deadhorse<o:p></o:p>
    As we approached Deadhorse we could tell we were getting near the <st1:place w:st="on">Arctic Ocean</st1:place>. The temperature must have dropped 15 degrees and the winds picked up. As we got in to the city I can attest that its just as industrial as has been reported. Everything there is there for a specific purpose without any regard for aesthetics. We found some gas. Interesting experience once you figure out the actual pumps and self service pay station are inside the little building to keep them from freezing. On the topic of gas, I was able to make up to Deadhorse without having to rely on my reserve gas. I was surprised how far I could get on a tank of gas when I keep the speeds down. It was still comforting having the backup gas and would not suggest anyone forgo carrying extra gas unless they clearly have the range and a decent margin.


    4800 miles later from Michigan we arrive at Prudoebay in the town of Deadhorse[​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>The Caribou Resort -- trailers!</o:p>
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    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Gas is about the same price here as when I left Michigan</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>


    More of the Aerostich Tour guys at the Caribou Resort


    [​IMG]

    Next order of things was, of course, food. No tourist restaurants. You basically had to eat at one of the hotel restaurants. The one we stopped in also doubled as the cafeteria to feed the oil field workers. We got in to Deadhorse around 3:00PM and discovered the food service didn’t start till 5:00PM anywhere in town. So we grabbed some sandwiches from the cooler, soup, chips and free coffee, scarf it down and hit the road feeling a sense of guarded accomplishment. Of course getting to Prudhoe Bay is a big deal but getting back to <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:City></st1:place> is a bigger deal. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    Heres is Dr. Greg taking a photograph of the of the road art on my GS


    [​IMG]


    But wait, we need a picture. Someone recalled that the post office has the famous sign. We finally found the post office, got our pictures and were off for Wiseman.
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Rhindhold posing on his sparkly KTM</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]


    Notice that red minivan. It was at the same Campground in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City> and we passed each other for 2 days heading up the haul road. I think the family was from <st1:State w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Alabama</st1:place></st1:State>. Must have been 6 or 7 of them in total all staying in one big tent. ….a real family experience I’m sure.


    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>

    I think I read somewhere that Ford was doing cold weather testing on the oilfield. Sure looks like it.
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>

    Well enough of Deadhorse...time to head south for warmer weather.
    #17
  18. H-Jay

    H-Jay Mo 2 C

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    404
    Location:
    Michiganland
    Cont.

    Here’s some pictures of the return trip.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The sun shining on one of the many Pipeline Pump Stations

    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    On the way up through the tundra plains I noticed the Caribou herds would scatter when they the motorcycle engine as they did here in this picture.

    [​IMG]

    One the way back I spotted a herd, turned the engine off and coasted closer to them. I was bound and determined to get a picture. As I was sitting there in silence watching the herd I noticed the lead buck started trotting straight at me. I switched on the key, shifted in to 1<SUP>st</SUP> gear but didn’t hit the starter. As the buck and the herd approached closer I reached for the starter but before I hit it the herd turned and crossed the highway right in front of me. What an experience. I almost forgot to take pictures.

    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We stopped at Coldfoot for breakfast and again ran into KLRDave and Rhindhold.

    [​IMG]<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>If you kamke reservations at the Coldfoot Camp that's it in the background...trailers!</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Here is Rhindhold and his sparkly KTM... </o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>did I mention its sparkly? Especially in the sun.</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Here is KLR Dave and his faster than a KTM KLR</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We also heard about a guy that cut a caribou in half with his, I think, KLR. Fortunately he only suffered a blackeye. Several others went down without injury or serious damage to their motorcycles. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p><o:p></o:p>
    One of the Road Evil Doers resting up before making the road challenging again.

    [​IMG]
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>Some of the Evil Doer's war chest started out as a part of the mountain then...</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>.... big bolders then big rocks</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>At a construction delay GSNerd's GS decides to take a nap and lay down...</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    More bicyclist on the Haul Road. The Construction crews pull them through the thick stuff with ropes to keep them from holding up traffic.

    [​IMG]

    Crossing the Arctic Circle again

    [​IMG]

    We met this couple on 3 wheel bikes at the Hot Shot. They flew in to Prudhoe Bay with their bikes from <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place w:st="on"><st1:country-region w:st="on">Australia</st1:country-region></st1:place> and were headed south. I can’t believe the number of bicyclist that were going end to end <st1:City w:st="on">Prudhoe Bay</st1:City>, <st1:State w:st="on">Alaska</st1:State> to the road end in <st1:country-region w:st="on">Argentina</st1:country-region> below the <st1:place w:st="on">Antarctic Circle</st1:place>. They had previously spent 5 years circumnavigating <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Australia</st1:place></st1:country-region> on the Bicycles. What courage and determination!

    [​IMG]

    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>

    [​IMG]

    I think I brought about 30 pounds of mud, calcium, gravel and insects back to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Fairbanks</st1:place></st1:City>. We found a car wash to get some of the bad stuff off before it could do any damage. With things all cleaned up I could check for any damage, please to find none. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]

    Later we grabbed dinner at Subway with KLR Dave and Rhindhold them. Over dinner we discovered they were also headed to <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Dawson</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">City</st1:placeType></st1:place> and Rhindhold was planning to also do the Dempster. Rhindhold thought he had seen the last of the 2 yanks. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    #18
  19. Gumption

    Gumption Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2004
    Oddometer:
    20
    Great trip report! Keep it coming. :lurk
    #19
  20. Snuffy

    Snuffy Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,084
    Location:
    Tucson
    I like the mix of pics you are showing,which gives a good feel about your trip. Keep it coming!
    #20