Need Advise on Artic Trip

Discussion in 'Alaska' started by Shoganai, Mar 6, 2005.

  1. Shoganai

    Shoganai Let's do some livin'

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    Reason for nuking post:

    I’m saddened to be seen as an attention seeker when all I thought I was doing was sharing my life among fellow riders.

    In order to live as humbly as I can, I must avoid the appearance of attention seeking behavior.

    Perhaps I was posting to feed my ego, because it did make me feel good when people said they liked or supported what I said. But at the same time it made me uncomfortable. I think that uncomfortable feeling was because deep down I knew it fed my ego, and that was not living humbly.

    I have received more than I’m worthy and given as much as I could to this site and it’s members. For both, I’m grateful.

    Off to seek peace in all things and to ride with joy.
    I wish for you all the same.

    Gwen
    #1
  2. Ontario GS

    Ontario GS Budding Adv. Traveler

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    I have been thinking of doing the same trip in 2006. I think good planning, self education and a large dose of common sense are all important. There are some good websites that document prior trips, which will help you develope a game plan. :thumb
    #2
  3. pilot

    pilot ...

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    Since you are planning to ride there in 2006, you should plan on being in Anchorage at the end of the Alcan 5000. I have heard there may be a small party there for a few ADV riders.
    www.alcan5000.com
    #3
  4. FN in MT

    FN in MT Been here awhile

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    I've wanted to do a similar trip for a few years and have a few suggestions. #1 get "The Milepost" . A 2" thick book that gives you a LOT of info on both AK roads and businesses as well as all the western Canadian Provinces. Theres a decent map included as well. Lots of good info for planning a route up and back.

    #2 take a look at the current copy of "Alaska by Motcrcycle" by Dr. Gregory W. Frazier. He's apparently done AK for quite a few years as well as running M/C tours there. Get the current edition .

    I've ridden several areas of northern AB and BC but never been up into the NWT or Yukon. I can relate that one does NOT want to have a mechanical or physical problem as it can REALLY co$t a ton. I've have a friend who wrecked his bike and hurt himself up north and the cost was staggering. Those costs escalate the farther north you go. Something to keep in mind if your on a budget.

    I'd imagine that a prudent, well equipped rider should be able to do the trip without incident. I've read accounts of guys on Sportsters doing the Dempster Hwy up to Inuvik with very minimal gear.

    There is a site by a guy who made the trip up to the Arctic Circle on a Sportster, with a cotton duffle bag tied on the back with clothseline and he made it without incident. Try a search for the site.

    FN in MT
    #4
  5. Owlseye

    Owlseye Been here awhile

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    I'm planning a solo trip this summer (2005), leaving Alberta mid June and eventually up the Dempster. I ride a V-Strom. When I get back I'll try to figure out this system and post some photos and a report. From reading the many good posts on this site, it would seem that the most challanging section fuel wise is from Dawson City to Eagle Plains. I think the Strom will do that distance (at least it does so far), but I'll carry a 1 gallon spare to be safe. Happy riding!
    #5
  6. akrider

    akrider mild adventurer

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    Some of the best information on travel to the North can be found in ride reports posted here at advrider. Check out Antware's report, and Curtis's report and many more. They have done the tour and did a great job of giveng advice for future adventures.
    #6
  7. northrider

    northrider Traveler

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    Shoganai,

    According to the Alcan 5000 site there is no rally this year. It looks like it is scheduled for August of 2006 As another option you might try meeting up with the Dust to Dawson (D2D) crowd in Dawson City on the 17th and 18th of June. A number of riders who frequent this forum will be there and several of them have mentioned continuing up to Inuvik. Hope to see you there.
    #7
  8. Fighter

    Fighter Head Gruver

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    You are so correct NorthRider... send them all to the Dempster Dash or Dust to Dawson thread.
    #8
  9. Ontario GS

    Ontario GS Budding Adv. Traveler

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    Shoganai

    I posted this last night on a Ontario board and have just started reading about the Dempter. The book is worthy.

    *******************************
    Just received my 2005 - 57th Edition of THE MILEPOST, the bible of North Country Travel. This book provides details of food, gas, lodging, camping, fishing, sightseeing and road conditions along the highways and byways of Alaska, Yukon, Northwest Territories and major access routes in Alberta and British Columbia.

    This book should provide endless nights of dreaming & planning of far off adventures, at least until we're rid of the snow.

    www.themilepost.com

    John
    Peterborough, ON
    BMW R1150GS
    #9
  10. Fighter

    Fighter Head Gruver

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    Sounds great ShoGee: Feel free to jump on the D2D/DD threads any time and fire away. You will find a ton of info about riding in this "last best place"
    Most of the the Gruvers have lived and ridden up here for many, many years.
    There is a wealth of knowledge available with a tap of the fingers. The people you chat with will make your Alaska/Yukon ride one that you'll never forget. Ride Safely
    #10
  11. friar mike

    friar mike IronButtGruver

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    Hey Shoganai check out my web sit for a desription. www.abbeyauto.com:thumb at lest as my wife see it:lol3 :rofl
    #11
  12. Fighter

    Fighter Head Gruver

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    See Dust to Dawson thread pages 1 thru 149... :wink:
    #12
  13. Fighter

    Fighter Head Gruver

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    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10945
    #13
  14. Curtis

    Curtis Life serve the risk taker

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    Which direction will you be coming from for the Dempster? The closest place for tire change is Whitehorse but the Honda shop is very proud of doing tire installs and wants you to pay them accordingly. They will claim to balance them and not do it. Check the Harley shop in Whitehorse, they had a kickass balancer but were missing the BMW hub attachment for rear.

    The traction varies on the Dempster too. If it's wet it's slippery snot, if it's dry and hard it's like riding on cement. Get used to floating on the loose gravel in parts. The point is street tires may be fine. No tire will be the fix-all in wet snot or deep gravel, knobbs will help some.

    I'm assuming you saw my post about the fuel issue and possible solutions.
    #14
  15. legion

    legion Honking the Horn

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    This may turn out to be a bigger issue than you're expecting. Not necessarily swapping the tires but suspension geometry, travel, and there may be limited DS tire choices for that rim. Is your bike scuffed? Do you mind if it gets that way?
    #15
  16. Fighter

    Fighter Head Gruver

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    Sounds great. Take the K. I have an '85 RS. Love it. First KRS sold in Alaska. 14K miles and runs strong. I will keep it parked and take the GS to Inuvik. Keep in touch.
    #16
  17. legion

    legion Honking the Horn

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    I can't help w/ the VTX choice ...I don't know what that is. I'm guessing it's not intended to be taken off road though. I wouldn't worry about anything in particular but you may find that you meet very few other people on luxo street bikes en route to Inuvik. Much will depend on road conditions and no amount of worry will have an affect there.

    A buddy and I took the Taylor Hwy from Tok to Dawson City a couple years ago and he was on a K/LT. Some scuffing was involved but that could've been avoided had either of us considered that morning that there actually are alternatives to making your goal despite the risk. It's not like you get a medal for wrasslin' a luxo barge through bad conditions in the middle of nowhere so just bear in mind that road conditions may play a role.

    Here's the trip I referred to:

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=18458&highlight=dawson
    #17
  18. Curtis

    Curtis Life serve the risk taker

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    If money is no object then by a street legal XR at the Whitehorse Honda on the way up and go have fun on the Dempster and then give it back to them on consignment when your done. The loss there minus the parts you replace on your nice bikes will be minimal.
    #18
  19. Curtis

    Curtis Life serve the risk taker

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    I know when I was in Eagle Plains there was a guy there on a Gold Wing. His electrical system was shorted out and he was stuck. I met up with him in Fairbanks again and he told me he finally figured it out as a shorted brake light that shutdown the whole bike. Amazing that wasn't fused but that's another story. The washboard road can eventually take a toll on a bike without proper off-road suspension.

    It is very possible to ride the Dempster with a street bike and have no issues. It's also very possible to ruin your bike and it will never be the same. The weather usually hold's the key and also not wrecking of course.

    You also may be able to rent a bike for the weekend or somewhere up there and keep your bike in Whitehorse until your done with the Dempster. I don't know about these things but worth looking into to preserve your nice bikes as best you can.

    I stayed at the River View Hotel when I was in Whitehorse. The Manager at the time was Bridgette and I believe from Austria. She loved motorcycles and really catered to our needs. She had an underground garage that she let us put our bikes in at night and locked it up, lot's of theft in Whitehorse. She also let us ship tires ahead to install in Whitehorse. Southwest Moto tires actually handled sending up a new set of tires to her and they did a great job.
    #19
  20. dman

    dman Long timer

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    Shoganai - way back in '87 I rode up from California to Inuvik and back (on
    a dual-sport thumper) and it was the ride of my life. I also owned a K-RS
    at the time and could not have imagined riding it in some of the
    conditions I encountered on the Dempster, not to mention this 100 mile
    river of mud from somewhere to somewhere else in Alberta. But when
    I got home, I rode my K-bike over many miles of dirt and gravel in
    Death Valley, and you know what - it wasn't a bad dirt bike, and it sure
    would have been nice to have that fairing, and the bags, not to mention
    1000cc, up in the North. Ride what you got and have fun! I don't think
    you can find any dirt-oriented tires for the K Bike unless there are Distanzias
    in the right size.
    -dman
    #20