Dempster Hi-way

Discussion in 'Canada' started by tor1150r, Mar 10, 2006.

  1. tor1150r

    tor1150r --

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    Oddometer:
    111
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Planning a trip from Toronto to BC/Yukon this summer. I'm riding a BMW R1150R, 2-up (not exactly an dual sport!). I have read about the Dempster Hiway eating up tires. I have a limited choice of 'dual sport type' tires for this bike. Has anyone travelled the Dempster last summer? Is the road really a tire-shredder?
    #1
  2. friar mike

    friar mike IronButtGruver

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2004
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    4,921
    Location:
    Wasilla Alaska
    go to the demster dash thread I just bumped it up for you to check out:deal
    #2
  3. hondav2

    hondav2 Kiwi Fukengruver

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2004
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    Location:
    New Zealand , Fiordland

    The Demster is better maintained that other dirt roads up north, just have to watch if it has been graded or wet . The shale they put on the roads can cause a puncture or 2 so take repair gear. Easily ridden in one day . Took me 15 hours taking my time with plenty of stops. If you need tyres sent to Dawson cantact Barb at www.alaskaleather.com and pick them up at Dicks Downtown Hotel Toddy
    #3
  4. Owlseye

    Owlseye Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    236
    Location:
    Edmonton, Alberta
    I did it last year on a V-Strom, Tourance on the rear and the original Trailwing on the front. (That frigging thing just won't wear out). My friend rode a Suzuki 1500 Intruder (big Harley clone) with the original street tires. We took two days up (Wet, rained alot, snot mixed with marbles-like road, freshly graded in 20 km stretches). Came out in 1 long day with the road just like pavement in long stretches-- up to 120 km/hr in some places (and I'm no hero). We had no trouble with punctures. We had dropped the pressure a bit and slowed down in the freshly graded areas. It seems that the fresher the grade, the sharper the rocks that are churned up.
    It's a great trip. Try to get up to Tuk, and eat some muktuk (blubber?).
    #4
  5. Cheap Ryder

    Cheap Ryder Ride for enlightenment

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2005
    Oddometer:
    576
    Location:
    Montana great divide
    I rode the Dempster in June 2004 and the road was great with only short terrifying sections of loose pea gravel. Some of the horror stories of dempster gravel probably came from the 80s when they used to use the sharp black shale on the road. I spent some time at Eagle Plains trying to glue my back tire together on my 850 Guzzi. Lots of deep cuts with shale stuck deep down in. I used several tubes of super glue and managed to glue up my tires and my fingers. In 2004 I took a spare back tire and used it plus I plugged another guys tire. The ride is great and look up one of the "Frozen Chosen" bike club and get a pin and contribute to their charity.
    #5
  6. friar mike

    friar mike IronButtGruver

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    Location:
    Wasilla Alaska
    you mean like this one but it did make it the whole way it was new when I left home and that was here in Alaska.oh by the way those are cuts not crack's
    [​IMG]
    #6
  7. hondav2

    hondav2 Kiwi Fukengruver

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    Most of the shale was around Eagle Plains, the grader operator there said he has seen up to 10 cars get flats from one grading, pays to ride in the wheel marks. Flats arent a problem if you have repair gear.
    #7
  8. sunio

    sunio Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Oddometer:
    36
    Did Alaska last year (from Toronto BTW) on two F650 GS Dakars with my brother. We went up all the way to Inuvik. We were both on Metzeler Tourance tires. Both sets of tires survived Dempster and Denali without issues. No flats on either bike on the entire trip (18000km). I even came back to TO on the same set. I'd say Denali was much worse than Dempster as it was littered with large rocks. All those highways are covered by all kinds of bikes every year including Goldwings with trailers so you should be fine. All kinds of bikes also get wrecked there. All depends on the rider and a bit of luck sometimes. Watch out for freshly graded sections. I hit one at 100+km/h as there was no warning sings. It was very deep and soft. I barely kept my bike up.
    If you need to get tires changed somewhere there you'd better order them before you leave. Once you're there selection will be limited if there is going to be something to chose from at all.

    PM me with your e-mail address and I'll send you a link to a trailer from the movie I made on this trip (lots of bike cam footage) so you can get taste of it :)

    Peter

    #8
  9. slideways

    slideways EspaƱa

    Joined:
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    My wife and I did the trip to Inuvik 2 up. It is a great ride and we will do it again. Be prepared for flat tires. If you are on a bike with tubless tires take a tube with you. I cut the rear tire on my GS so bad on the shale it was un repairable. Also prepare for the mosquitos , they were so bad that when I stopped to fix the rear tire I could not remove my helmet.

    There were three other vehicles with flat tires in this section of shale. We all pitched in and helped each other sort out spares and repairs.

    [​IMG]
    #9