Way out West - Canada to Central America

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Motojournalism, Sep 30, 2009.

  1. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    My first big trip was from Montreal to the Maritime provinces.

    Now it's time to see the rest! :thumb


    I'm keeping this one simple. A few words with photos.

    Canada's the warm-up, there's a long way to go yet...



    So long Montreal, your're a fabulous city, I'll be back someday.


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    a final few hours with the city.

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    A somber progression in the Portuguese neighbourhood

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    A final night camped-out in the studio. Things are in storage and I now have no residence.
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    Ready to roll.
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    No more commute, no more rush. Not that I was ever one to rush...

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    A final morning at work just to wrap things up.

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    And I'm off. Homeless and unemployed, life is good :D

    Takin' it easy on the freeway out of Montreal, jus' tryin' not to get killed...

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    Back on old familiar roads, back where I learned to ride a couple years ago.

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    Ice fishing huts, beached 'til winter's return.

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    A short hop via ferry to Ontario.

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    To the first night's stay with big "D" (I know you're on ADV somewhere...)

    Bikes are swapped, maps are consulted, plans and dream trips are put on the table alongside the brews.




    Big D on my horse with no name

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    And his ride feels like a bicycle compared to mine

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    It's well set-up for tall folk

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    And a homemade Indian feast is the highlight of the night.

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    Ohhhh yeahhhh...

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    Thanks guys, you rock. See you on the road...

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    #1
  2. zaner32

    zaner32 In over my head

    Joined:
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    I've seen your pics on the Quebec dual sport website before. You have quite the eye to get amazing pictures from a camera. I'm subscribed!
    #2
  3. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    Great start! Love the pics :thumb

    :lurk
    #3
  4. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    With a late start after a bit of wrenching on the bike, and taking care of some paperwork, I'm off to boogie in Calabogie.
    A bit of offroad and backroad mecca in Eastern Ontario. Grab the PDF article here and head on out there!



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    I don't arrive in the area till late afternoon so after a bit of puttering around, I look for a spot for stealth camping...

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    And find the most perfect spot imaginable.



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    Off in the morning to explore

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    Good surface, lots of fun.

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    Taking it easy though, not much meat left on this tire.

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    I surprise an old woodsman after a water-crossing, he pops out of his trailer like a jack-in-the-box to see what's coming from the road that's washed out!




    Right alongside the pond along an old railbed

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    And in to town for some breakfast. (love these old signs)

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    This regular was a dispatch rider during the war

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    And Al Capone had a hideout just around the corner

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    We're in canoe country alright.

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    Back to seek out the trail, it's dry steep and sandy.

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    And my bike lets me know about it.

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    I jumped on to this thanks to the direction of a friendly ATV rider:


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    Only to find miles of this in straight lines:

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    So I jumped back onto the hardtop, which turned out to be quite fun.

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    Had to turn back to check if my eyesight was failing

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    Into a deserted provincial campground for the night.

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    Here's the first few days, Montreal to Metcalfe, Griffeth, Parry Sound
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    #4
  5. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    Hey thanks guys :thumb

    I love this next bit...
    #5
  6. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    And I'm out of the campground before anyone's around.

    Shhhh... Stealth...


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    Ontario rolls on

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    And on

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    And on

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    I have to adopt the ridiculous KLR racing tuck for a break from the wind noise on these long straights. But only when nobody is looking...

    KLR650. Aerodynamic like a moose


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    I'm here to meet Rick, and after a bit of small-town detective work, find an address,food and a good sleep.
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    Rick drops a line in the morning, no bites though.

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    I do my thing too

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    Rick also rides a KLR. It dosen't take much convincing to get me up in his other ride though

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    About the size of an Austin Mini once you're in

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    Rick is the same flying his plane as he is in his boat. Totally natural, in control. No big deal.

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    He's been flying since he was kid. Rick tells me his dad would pass over the controls, and say "Keep on this heading!". Time would pass and he'd hear his dad snoring, fast asleep!

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    A long train loading up in Chapleau

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    Rick passes over the controls.


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    And after a tense moment, I relax and get the feel for it.

    Whohoo! All that time playing Flight Simulator paid off

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    Much of northern Ontario is like a sponge

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    Rick spots another plane, and radios to see if he wants some air-to-air photos

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    I'm gonna need a longer lens, we can't fly much closer!

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    Rick buzzes his neighbours house on the final aproach. Man, the gravity in a small plane is disorienting when you're not used to it!

    Leveling out and slowing down.

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    He dosen't need much room to land, just drops it, right next to his house.

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    Touchdown, super smooth.

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    and Rick fills in the logbook for the day.

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    Thanks Rick, that meant a lot for me to get up in a plane like that :thumb





    My GPS top-speed now reads 240kmh, pretty good for a KLR.

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    My headset nut is finger-tight. It was banging around all afternoon yesterday. We fix that the old-fashioned way, with a hammer.

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    Gotta love the real Finnish sauna too :thumb

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    #6
  7. DualSPRTfan

    DualSPRTfan Been here awhile

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    looks great, good shots too, being an aviation buff and worked on my pilots license myself, I enjoyed the last part.

    coming along for the ride. :lurk
    #7
  8. NB_CRF'er

    NB_CRF'er I got a job, I explore!

    Joined:
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    Great shots! Looking forward to this report.:thumb
    #8
  9. squonker

    squonker Eat my shorts

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    Fantastic photos, and I like your choice of steed too!
    #9
  10. Roughshod

    Roughshod weld proud

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Calgary, and backroads of Alberta and BC.
    Love the photos man! Refreshing camera angles. (come on now, there's art training in there somewhere) Drive safe and have a hoot!
    #10
  11. calrider

    calrider I'm Lost Too!!

    Joined:
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    Calgary, Canada
    A good eye, wonderful use of light. I'm in...
    #11
  12. Natnewt

    Natnewt Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Toronto Ontario
    Knowing what a great photographer you are, this is going to be a great report. Can't wait to see more and maybe meet up with you on one of the rides eventually.
    #12
  13. East Coast Rider

    East Coast Rider Just Me...

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    Stuck somewhere in motorcycle Purgatory
    Wow! what great shots!! :clap
    #13
  14. little foot

    little foot Super Mediator

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    me likey alot :wave
    #14
  15. Pig-Pen

    Pig-Pen (Formerly KTMike)

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    Really enjoying this Anton. As always, GREAT photos...keep em coming:clap:clap:clap
    #15
  16. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    Thanks for joining in folks. Good to see some familiar faces :thumb

    I'm in Prince George now, waiting for a front tire and rear shock. Halfway through a valve job, the shims cost $21 each up here :eek1

    Heading south and over to Vancouver Island ASAP. It's cold up here!
    Then on to the States
    #16
  17. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    Yeah, there's something about airplanes that has a good motorcycle rider crossover. It's gotta be that freedom of movement.
    #17
  18. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    It's a cold grey morning. It's been wet overnight, but it's settled to a drizzle by morning.



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    It's cool that they put this sort of thing up in an otherwise featureless landscape. makes you feel like you've gone somewhere!

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    On and on. People put these cairns/ inukshuk on rock outcroppings all across Canada. Mostly in this part of Ontario from what I've seen.

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    Up ahead I see a couple bikes turning around to stop at another group of bikes coming the other way. It's an assortment of cruisers and sportbikes, mostly 2-up with wives and girlfriends. I ask if everything is OK, and they say no problems, the road just turns to gravel ahead.



    I go on through the mud and enjoy my bike even more. I take a break when the pavement starts up again half an hour later. I'm feeling pretty damn smug about having a dual-sport, when a solo rider on a full-dress Harley tourer comes tearing by on the same road.




    Finally able to peer out to the horizon and see Lake Superior. Like the ocean, you can't see the other side.

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    It's a long lonely highway. It's a Trans-Canada bottleneck, just about the only route you can take to go west across canada. Most of the traffic is transport rucks
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    These were in the back of an old hopper on a side line. I think they're the plates that go between the railway ties and the rail. The spikes go into the holes.

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    It warms up after cresting the hill on the way to Thunder Bay.

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    I miss the first exit to Thunder Bay and jump on the next exit. I'm here to meet Felix for tentspace. A phone call revals that my wrong turn landed me just around the corner from his place. We head out for burgers n' brews then I'm happy to crash on the couch for the night.



    We head out for a tour the next moring to Kakabeka Falls


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    Then we're out to check out the cabin at Dog Lake.

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    Felix has a killer collection of bikes that you don't see here often. DR750BIG, Super Tenere, this Africa Twin, and another Africa Twin on the way.



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    We swap bikes on the way back. That's a mistake, Ignorance is bliss. The Africa twin is quiet! I'm protected from the wind! It's comfortable! It goes fast! I can see one of these in my future.



    It's time to head back to the long haul. Thanks again for putting me up and showing me around Felix :thumb



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    This water filter is one of my essential items. Saves a lot of money on buying drinks, you can be miles from any sort of town, fill up anywhere.

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    I poked around for some stealth camping, but this was some sort of dump. Not a good place to be with four-legged briuns in the vicinity.

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    There's a campground way down this way.

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    And a long wait for some construction, but the scenery is nice.

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    I love the schedule your body adapts to when camping on the road. Tired at sundown, you sleep soundly till sunup, refreshed and ready to go. Just the way it's supposed to be.

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    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/antontrax/3978370162/" title="Way out West pt4 by antontrax, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2663/3978370162_f55fc20a82_o.jpg" width="1024" height="534" alt="Way out West pt4" /></a>
    #18
  19. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    :becca


    Fek. fek, fek. No torque wrench, just busted the valve cover bolt! :baldy
    Any ideas? I guess I'll have to drill it out? use an easy out? If I'm very lucky, there's still a nub left to grab, but I doubt it...

    Where are those Kawasaki parts diagrams again? I'll have to order a new bolt...

    <a href="http://twitpic.com/k5zyo" title="Setback! No torque wrench, busted the right valve cover bolt! :( on Twitpic"><img src="http://twitpic.com/show/thumb/k5zyo.jpg" width="150" height="150" alt="Setback! No torque wrench, busted the right valve cover bolt! :( on Twitpic"></a>

    <a href="http://twitpic.com/k5zhj" title="Oil everywhere! on Twitpic"><img src="http://twitpic.com/show/thumb/k5zhj.jpg" width="150" height="150" alt="Oil everywhere! on Twitpic"></a>
    #19
  20. Motojournalism

    Motojournalism motojournalism.com

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    #20