Trans Labrador Highway solo on a WR250R

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by GravelRider, Feb 19, 2020.

  1. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    Yes, that's definitely it! I don't know that it's forever out of reach... Just need a buddy system.

    Sounds like the same road for sure. I was hoping that maybe it was different road you were talking about and I just found out about a different TLH offshoot. Oh well. I'm glad I didn't hit any of the sharp granite pieces while I was there.

    Those other two areas sound like a lot of fun to ride. I'll definitely look into them for future trips. Thanks!
    #21
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  2. rjnutt

    rjnutt Desert tortoise

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    Great report!
    #22
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  3. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    Day 6

    Labrador City to Tadoussac, QC

    [​IMG]

    And this is where my camera on my phone started giving me issues. The app kept throwing up errors and wouldn't open. This is on my Pixel 2. I've had nonstop problems out of this phone and was actually on about my sixth or seventh one replaced under warranty for camera and other issues. So no pictures for most of the day. It would randomly start working, then stop. Ugh.

    I had a pretty uneventful ride down route 389, which really is a fun ride. The scenery is great. The road surface is superb, and there are plenty of twisties to keep it interesting. Once I got down to Baie Comeau, I stopped by a restaurant and grabbed some poutine and decided on my next course of action. I had always wanted to ride up to Kegaska, so I thought I'd start heading that way and see where I end up.

    I stopped at a lookout somewhere along the way and my camera started working again.

    [​IMG]

    The view was spectacular

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    I continued on, taking in the scenery

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    Then I realized I just wasn't in the mood to keep going to Kegaska. I decided to turn around and find a camp spot. Preferably one with a shower and picnic tables. I found one somewhere near Tadoussac, a private campground. It was a bit crowded for my taste, and firewood had to be bought, but I found as secluded of a spot as I could and had a hot shower, and relaxed by the camp fire.

    No picture of the GPS, as the camera crapped out again.

    [​IMG]
    #23
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  4. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    Day 7

    Tadoussac, QC to Adirondacks, NY

    383 miles, all paved

    I slept in, took my time getting packed up, and got a way later start on the day than I had planned on. I was going to go the whole way back today, around 700ish miles, but with the late start, I decided to just keep going until I didn't feel like going any further this day. First snag of the day was the ferry. I had forgotten just how slow it was going between Tadoussac and Quebec City. While on the ferry, I got talking to a guy who does overlanding in his jeep. He was asking where I had come from, and when I mentioned the Esker Road, he said he was very familiar with the road and had ridden it several times, and even did a YouTube video about going around the washout. I knew exactly who he was, because I had watched this video, or parts of it, a bunch of times in preparation for the trip, and @John F and I had discussed the video when talking about a workaround to this washout. Very small world. And he was a hell of a nice guy to boot.

    View of my bike on the ferry
    [​IMG]

    And this, unfortunately, was the last photo of the trip. I tried to get a picture with the guy from YouTube (can't recall his name), but the camera crapped out again soon after taking the picture above, and never did work again. It ended up being replaced under warranty as well.

    I made the slow trek down to Quebec City. From there I hopped on the highway and started high tailing it back home. I saw signs for the Adirondacks, which I always enjoy visiting, so I decided to pull off and ride to the top of Whiteface Mountain. I got there about five minutes after they closed the gates to allow new traffic to the top! Oh well, I found a secluded and nearly deserted campground to stay the night at.

    [​IMG]
    #24
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  5. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    Day 8

    354 miles, all paved.

    Not much to say about today. Camera was broken, so no pictures, and I just hopped on the highway all the way back home.
    #25
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  6. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    All in all, there were a ton of setbacks on this trip, and I didn't get to see or do a huge part of what I had planned on, which was quite disappointing. However, I still had fun and saw parts of this planet I had never seen before, I didn't wreck the bike or injure myself, and I have a definite reason to come back!
    #26
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  7. Brenski

    Brenski Been here awhile

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    However, I still had fun and saw parts of this planet I had never seen before, I didn't wreck the bike or injure myself, and I have a definite reason to come back![/QUOTE]

    As usual I enjoyed reading your RR. Both informative and inspiring! I'm hoping to do the TLH loop this summer.

    Recognizing your penchant for adventure, you might be interested in the recent article from CBC News describing a 30 year development plan for north western Quebec. Along with a rail line, it includes the extension of the JBR up to the SE shore of Hudson Bay at Whapmagoostui. I will never see it; hoping you will!
    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nort...um-françois-legault-grande-alliance-1.5466612

    I appreciate your time and effort.
    GB
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  8. Amphib

    Amphib A mind is like a parachute....

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    I concur. I truly appreciate your contributions to this site @GravelRider. I love your ride reports and this one didn't disappoint. I feel those northlands quietly calling me. I'm always fascinated by this part of the world. Thank you.
    #28
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  9. terryna

    terryna Adventurer

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    amazing adventure[​IMG]
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  10. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    Thanks for following along!

    Thanks for following along. If you do the ride and make a RR, post a link to it here or message me the link. I always love reading ride reports about places I've traveled to.

    This is exciting news about the expansion plans up to the Hudson Bay proper.

    [​IMG]

    According to this map, the road up to Whapmagoostui will be phase 2, so I'm hoping this is much sooner than 30 years. Also very exciting is the extension of the Trans Taiga Road to Schefferville, unfortunately that's phase 3. I'm also curious to see where the southern offshoot off the Trans Taiga goes to. Did I miss it in the article?

    All the more reasons to keep taking trips up to northeastern Canada! Thanks for posting this.

    Thank you for your kind words. Thanks for reading along and taking the time to comment.

    Thank you!
    #30
  11. btrrtlwtr

    btrrtlwtr Been here awhile Super Supporter

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    that will be a nice extension hopefully ill be around to ride that when it happens 64yr old now not going to hold my breath . last new road i had the pleasure of riding was to tuk in 2018
    #31
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  12. John F

    John F Been here awhile

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    Hard to say from your photo, but I'm guessing the washout is maybe 30-40 feet across? Any idea how deep it might be?
    As usual I enjoyed reading your RR. Both informative and inspiring! I'm hoping to do the TLH loop this summer.

    Recognizing your penchant for adventure, you might be interested in the recent article from CBC News describing a 30 year development plan for north western Quebec. Along with a rail line, it includes the extension of the JBR up to the SE shore of Hudson Bay at Whapmagoostui. I will never see it; hoping you will!
    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/cree-development-quebec-abel-bosum-françois-legault-grande-alliance-1.5466612

    I appreciate your time and effort.
    GB[/QUOTE]
    Interesting. It looks like maybe the Cree want a deepwater port to compete with Churchill, hence the rail line. The road from Radisson to Whap might be in progress around the time I retire, and might be doable. But I'll probably be gone by the time the road from the end of the TT to Schefferville becomes reality, if it ever does. I wonder if the road south from the TT is to the site of a future mine. I can't believe it would be to serve Nitchequon.
    #32
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  13. ColumboNH

    ColumboNH Been here awhile

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    @GravelRider thanks for taking us along! What did you use for navigation on this trip? Was the inreach explorer the sole gps you had? If so, were you able to follow a track that you loaded to it?
    #33
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  14. BonkDog

    BonkDog Adventurer

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    Amazing report! Thanks so much for sharing.
    #34
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  15. dtysdalx2

    dtysdalx2 Just glad to be here.

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    Yeah, what he said. Amazing. Never saw a RR from the right side of northern Canada eh? :lol3

    We went deep up into Manitoba when I was a kid. Be fun to ride a MC updere someday. In July.
    #35
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  16. 'Bob'

    'Bob' Been here awhile Supporter

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    @GravelRider, really appreciate the time and effort you put into your TLH report.
    If you go back that way check out some info on riding/camping around the ossokmanuan reservoir It helped power Twin Falls, which fed the iron ore mines at Lab City and Wabush, and it was the precursor to the later Smallwood Reservoir ('Churchill Falls') development: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smallwood_Reservoir
    The turnoff to the Ossokmanuan is up the Esker Road a ways on the right maybe 20 kms or so after you leave the TLH. You can see the turnoff on the map linked by JohnF in post #18 above if you follow the Esker Road from the washout back to the TLH. There are blue NL Hydro buildings just after the turnout to Ossokmanuan Reservoir.
    If you're inclined to ride and camp solo there are literally hundreds of miles of exploratory 'drill roads' in the Lab City & Wabush areas plus lots of other low key off road possibilities in Labrador and on the Island. I can recommend this if you don't already have a favourite map app:
    https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5049-308/Newfoundland&-Labrador-GPS-Map-SD
    #36
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  17. Kyron

    Kyron Oncler Inds

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    That's the way to end a ride report!!

    This ride is really on my bucket list
    #37
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  18. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    The route to Tuk is definitely on my list of places to ride. Did you do a RR?

    The main washout was probably 30-40 feet across, maybe less. The workaround is wider, probably twice as wide. The actual washout is proably 3-4 feet at the shallowest. The workaround was around 1' to 2' deep at the deepest.

    I'm really hoping the timetable moves up on these projects. 30 years is a LONG time.

    Navigation in an area like this is mostly unneeded, as there aren't many roads to get lost on. But, I downloaded Google Maps offline, and used that exclusively for navigation. I only used the Inreach for communication and daily trip totals. I never used the Inreach for navigation.

    Thank you for following along!
    #38
  19. GravelRider

    GravelRider AKA max384 Supporter

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    Great place to ride. In July. But, the black flies and mosquitoes are fierce, and I probably did not do a great job of highlighting this fact in this ride report. Earlier or later in the season will help with the man-eating bug problem, but you'll deal with the colder weather.

    Thanks for the suggestion on the Ossokmanuan Reservoir. I'll definitely be back to this area, and will definitely check this out!

    LOL. Pretty lackluster ending... But accurate!

    If you find the time, do eet!
    #39
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  20. John F

    John F Been here awhile

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    Try the logging roads around the Gouin Reservoir! Some areas are crisscrossed with them, and it’s nice to have a .gpx track to follow from somebody who rode it recently. Other areas look like they have lots of roads on the maps, but when you get there there’s only one.

    I, too, never rely on the InReach for navigation. I download sections of OpenStreetMaps onto my Nav V, and I download sections of offline maps to Google Maps on my phone. You can also often find decent maps as .pdf files online. But my favorite is a routable map loaded onto my GPS. Riding these areas alone I like to have a constant display of distance to destination and range to empty so I can gage when it’s time to start worrying.

    And Max, I can’t recommend strongly enough checking out the area around the Gouin Reservoir. It’s within an easy (for you) day’s ride from you and it’s spectacularly remote. I’m planning on hitting it again this summer on my way home from Weagamow and Nipigon. If all works out, the Saturday before Labor Day I’ll ride from Senneterre to the Casey airstrip, then Sunday from Casey to Lac Taureau, with a big pavement zoom the next day to get home. They expect a bigger turnout at Casey this year than last, and last year 135 planes showed up.
    #40
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