RTW the Jamie Z Way: Winter Hiatus

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Jamie Z, Nov 29, 2020.

  1. spuh

    spuh Long timer Supporter

    Apr 9, 2012
    Hope you packed a mask, as of midnight, mask mandate is back on.
  2. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z I'm serious. Supporter

    Oct 17, 2006
    Around Denver
    August 23, 2021

    Going to Canada! Or not...



    I woke up late today, in no rush, knowing I couldn’t go anywhere until my test results came back from Walgreens. I took the test two days ago with the expectation that my results would arrive in 48 hours.

    Mary had left for work when I got up, but she left a note on the table and a pot of coffee. She invited me to stop by her work to say goodbye.

    I packed up my things, showered, and caught up on my ride report. Still no results from Walgreens.

    I went back to the RAM manufacturing plant where Mary works, gave her a hug and thanked her for the wonderful time while I was visiting.


    I went north to ride Chuckanut road, recommended by my friend Matt, and confirmed by both Josh and Mary. The road follows the shoreline.


    The road is narrow with few pullouts, so it’s hard to get any good photos.


    My next stop was the Blue Sea facility in Bellingham. I had emailed Blue Sea a few days ago about my broken temperature gauge. The representative I spoke to told me that they didn’t have any retail, repair, or customer facilities in town, but after I explained my situation he offered me to stop by the plant and he’d personally give me a new gauge.

    I asked if I could replace the part in the parking lot.


    I got the old one out, and replaced it with the new one. Success!


    Now past 4pm, I fully expected I would have gotten my covid results by now, but still had nothing in my email. I went around the other side of the Blue Sea building and sat at a picnic table to search for someplace to take the test for faster results.


    This is one of those living-on-the-road things that I struggle with. Everything takes longer and is harder than you think.

    I found a testing site at the Bellingham airport. They had one open slot left this afternoon at 4:48pm. My clock said 4:40pm. I have to go now!

    Fortunately I wasn’t far away, and I arrived at about 4:52pm and got in line for the drive-up test.


    The test was quick. I was surprised that they already had documents there with my name on them.

    After my test I parked across the street to figure out the next plan. It was clear I wasn’t going into Canada today, so I needed to find a place to stay for the night. I did check for a hotel room; of course they were beyond my budget, so I checked iOverlander and located a promising campsite about an hour away.

    I passed this cool country store along the way and stopped to buy a sandwich and a couple of beers for dinner.


    And fresh blueberries.


    The campsite was high up in the hills; the road up rocky, loose gravel.



    But the view was unbeatable.


    And then the sun set.


    I fell asleep relatively early after eating a pound of blueberries.

    In the wee hours I woke up to pee and went back for my camera.

  3. staticPort

    staticPort Meditrider Supporter

    Jul 9, 2001
    east tn
    O my, those last three photographs are outstanding!
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  4. ktjim

    ktjim longtime n00b Supporter

    Aug 16, 2004
    so. maine
    The city lights shot is what used to be called "front page stuff" Nice.
    Jamie Z and torch like this.
  5. GringoRider

    GringoRider Adventurer

    May 25, 2021
    Ensenada, BC
    Based upon another RR I'm following lodging is expensive and hard to find above the border. Some cold weather too the further north you get.
  6. Hill Climber

    Hill Climber Long timer

    Feb 11, 2007
    Kaslo BC summer, Yuma AZ winter
    On the positive side, the US dollar will buy $1.25 ish Cdn.
    Jamie Z and Cal like this.
  7. Hill Climber

    Hill Climber Long timer

    Feb 11, 2007
    Kaslo BC summer, Yuma AZ winter
  8. y2blade

    y2blade Long timer

    May 23, 2005
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  9. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z I'm serious. Supporter

    Oct 17, 2006
    Around Denver
    August 24, 2021

    In Canada!



    As yesterday I woke early today but slept in knowing that I can’t really go anywhere unless and until I get my covid test results. Also, it was fairly cold, so I didn’t mind staying in my sleeping bag.

    Eventually I crawled out of my bag and got dressed. For a while I sat outside my tent admiring the view and eating more blueberries.



    Just as I was packing up, I got an email from TestDirectly, where I took the covid test yesterday. It was the negative results I was looking for.

    I had made arrangements to meet with an ADV inmate near Vancouver and I messaged him that I was on my way.


    My route led me on some wonderfully curvy roads through a heavily agricultural area with large fields of corn. I haven’t seen cornfields in a while.


    I stopped at a park in Lyndon Washington to update my ride report and submit my ArriveCAN information. The town is just a few miles from the Canadian border.


    Getting into Canada took only about one minute. The official asked me for my passport. She asked me where I would be going in Canada and for how long. She asked me if I had any weapons, or anything I planned to leave in Canada. And she asked me if I had proof of a negative covid test. I handed her my phone.


    She gave me everything back, plus an information sheet about current covid-related requirements, telling me that a mandatory mask mandate would be starting tomorrow in British Columbia.

    My host, Kiwi Canuck lives just a few miles inside the border and I rode straight there, but I had to stop on the way. What could be more Canadian than this?


    I found it curious that Canadians use Mexican speed limits here, but almost nobody that I’ve talked to speaks Mexican.

    I got to David’s house and before long we were discussing routes.


    Not long after, we took a local ride. David led the way with his wife Jana (pronounced Yana) on his Africa Twin.


    Their son rode with us as well on his V-Strom.


    For dinner, David grilled bison burgers.


    And all of us for dinner including their other son Alexander.


    In the evening David and I stayed up late talking in his shop.
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  10. Sunday Rider

    Sunday Rider Adventurer Wanabe

    Jan 31, 2010
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  11. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z I'm serious. Supporter

    Oct 17, 2006
    Around Denver
    I wish I could have found the the same clinics you were seeing. I kept running into information like this:


    And the availability of appointments was spotty.
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  12. Cow Boy Brad

    Cow Boy Brad brad1098

    Oct 8, 2007
    So. IL.
    Celsius or Fahrenheit?
  13. Hill Climber

    Hill Climber Long timer

    Feb 11, 2007
    Kaslo BC summer, Yuma AZ winter
    That would be C
  14. Kiwi Canuck

    Kiwi Canuck Been here awhile

    Mar 10, 2012
    Langley, BC
    Hey Jamie it was great having you stop by.
    here's a few pictures we snapped while you were here.
    Jamie Z 1.jpg Jamie Z 3.jpg
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  15. Golden955

    Golden955 Been here awhile

    Jul 28, 2016

    American exceptionalism, we ain't going to buckle under! bwahahaha.

    Attached Files:

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  16. Pete Pilot

    Pete Pilot Been here awhile

    Jul 17, 2015
    Prince Edward Island. Canada
    Golden, thanks so much for the map. Guess there’s no point in adding to your statement. From here in the Far East of Canada I certainly did enjoy the map. May I ask what part of the world you are?
    Jamie good on you for doing this RR. We all be riders. By the way I spent a summer about 8 years ago wandering the forestry roads in central b.c. Look for mapbooks by BACKROAD MAPBOOKS they be out Vancouver and make an excellent product. Get on forestry roads as soon as you can and wander north thru b.c. and camp by any of a few thousand lakes. You will meet extraordinary people. All the best Petepilot
    spokester, SilverAdvRdr and Mofrid like this.
  17. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z I'm serious. Supporter

    Oct 17, 2006
    Around Denver
    August 25, 2021



    I did not sleep great last night. My bruised ribs have been hurting the last few days. Not a lot worse than they have been, but enough to bother me at night when I try to lay on my side. This is exactly how it felt the last time I hurt myself like this. Took months to completely go away.

    I tried to get up early and get a bit of work done; I heard David call up to me to ask if I wanted any coffee, so I finished up my ride report and went downstairs.

    We looked at maps for a bit, trying to figure out where I should go next. We checked weather, ferry schedules, and riding distances. I had been considering the Port Hardy ferry from Vancouver Island over to Prince Rupert, but the departure and arrival times are not great. The ferry leaves at 7:30am with boarding an hour before, and it arrives to its destination at 11:30pm. And it’s rather expensive.

    David’s son John suggested that I should not miss the Island if possible, and we looked at several alternatives to the long ferry. We came up with a more reasonable plan, in my view. Stay tuned.

    So today I planned to wander around the area, maybe check out the city of Vancouver and a bit of the surroundings.

    I left their house and rode just a bit south to 0 Ave. The roads here are numbered based on the distance from the US border to the south, and (I think) distance from the west coast. Zero Avenue is literally the international boundary.


    The road is in Canada, the houses on the left are in the US. If you look closely you can see one of the stainless steel boundary monuments.

    This is what the monuments look like.


    While I rode I listened to travel writer Rick Steves' podcast about the US-Canadia border. https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/1075258225&color=0095c8&auto_play=false&show_artwork=false#

    I stayed on 0 Ave for quite a few miles until it reached the Peace Arch. Unfortunately the Canadian side of the park was closed, and the arch inaccessible, but I got a pic from far away.


    The American side of the park is open, and it does appear that Canadians can enter the park. I didn’t stop, though. I didn’t want to step foot in the US and then be refused entry back into Canada.

    I had been hoping to get some sort of iconic “Welcome to Canada” picture here. Denied, I did the next best thing.


    Coffee and a cinnamon bun. Apparently I got the wrong thing and should have ordered a double-double, whatever that is.


    I rode into Vancouver. I would later cross the far bridge on my way back.


    My next stop in Vancouver, at a place I heard about online.


    The story is that this place used to have some mundane name, after some old white guy probably. An abstract sculpture was placed in the park that some people said looked like a guy reclining. Then someone placed a renegade park sign with the new name, “Dude Chilling Park.” The city removed the sign, but soon after the local community started a petition, and eventually the name was officially changed.

    The original sculpture, which was made from wood, has since been replaced.


    I thought I’d probably stop by the park, take a couple of pictures, and then wander over to the ferry dock heading for the Island. But something drew me in, and I stayed at the park, on a bench, chilling. There were a lot of people coming and going, walking dogs, riding bicycles, laying in the grass. A couple guys played chess.

    By the time I got back up and going, it was around 5pm, and now I wasn’t sure if I had enough time for the ferry.

    This morning my host David had offered that I could stay another night. I had been wishy-washy. I hate doing that to my hosts, but I don’t always have a good idea of where I’m going. David had given me the code to his garage. So after stopping for dinner and contemplating finding a place to stealth camp or return unannounced to my hosts, I went back to David’s place and parked my bike in the garage.
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  18. Possibly Certifiable

    Possibly Certifiable Verified Bing-nut

    Jun 19, 2018
    New Brunswick Canada
    @Jamie Z If it's anything like the east coast be careful. This is the way we (or at least everyone I know) works it.

    You've been here more than three times in the last year, you aren't a guest any more, you're family. Get up off your lazy arse and get your own damned beer, you know where it is! :lol3

    Once you're family you can never be a guest again so you also get "abused" like family.
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  19. oldskool63

    oldskool63 Long timer

    Mar 14, 2014
    Tipton & Alpine, TN
    Burned too much time at the Dude Chilling Park! :D

    Jamie, your updates are a great way to start the day! Thanks again
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  20. Wagg

    Wagg n00b Supporter

    Jan 17, 2019
    Randalia Iowa
    Not sure what direction you are heading but the ride up and area around Whistler may be worth looking at.
    It has been several years now since I was there. The ski lifts up to the gondola is worth doing but not sure how expensive it is now.
    It is a touristy area so probably expensive but beautiful area. Not sure if any of it would even be open though.
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