Unfinished Business - Dempster Highway / Tuktoyaktuk 2018 in pictures.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by DYNOBOB, Nov 2, 2018.

  1. Phoenix101

    Phoenix101 Long timer

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    we were there in July, staying here for a few days... eagles out at the cannery and bears... lots at the State Park (out past the ferry landing)

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  2. BCBackRoads

    BCBackRoads Travels with Gumby

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    Thanks so much for reviving old memories. We had similar weather passing through there in 1984. But it was not on a bike and the road wasn't paved.

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    I would agree that it was one of the most spectacular roads I've ever been on. I need to go back. (Images from scanned slides)

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  3. MizzouRider

    MizzouRider Long timer Supporter

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    Great updates. Excellent pics. Thanks for posting.
  4. Acadian Rider

    Acadian Rider Been here awhile

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    I just got caught up on this RR DYNOBOB and I am enjoying reading it and looking at the pictures. I remember quite well reading your 2016 RR, enjoying the pictures and using it for planning purposes.

    When my friend Paul and I attempted to get to Tuk in June (2018) we turned back just North of the Arctic Circle.

    I understand why you didn't take any pictures of the bikes laying on the Dempster. Paul went down twice on it and taking pictures while he was down was the furthest thing on my mind.

    Keep it coming.
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  5. Acadian Rider

    Acadian Rider Been here awhile

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    I did all of those roads and i would have to agree that the scenery on the road from Haines Junction to Haines is way up there with the other ones.
  6. russ4ru

    russ4ru Adventurer

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    Great report!! Thanks for posting !!
  7. The Gymmy

    The Gymmy n00b

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    Fantastic RR. Loved the RR in 2016 from you so much it inspired me to head on up this past summer on the Dempster for Tuk.

    We left Virginia on 6/18/18 on the Super Tenere accompanied by 2 GS1200 and a KTM 1290

    Started the Dmpster on 6/28 from Dawson City - Rain the whole way to Eagle Plains. Left next morning for Inuvik and hit the dreaded slop, didnt go down but i have no idea how we all kept them up. Stayed at the Mackenzie as well on 6/30 and headed for Tuk the next day. We stayed at the Mackenzie another night too. Thanks for the inspiration! Love the ride report arctic circle 2018.jpg

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  8. DYNOBOB

    DYNOBOB lucky dog

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    Love the vintage pics of north country travel! Thanks for sharing them. The new road was constructed 1978-1990, looks like you were there about 1/2 way through.


    10 days from VA to Dawson is pretty good I'd say. Did you go straight home after the Dempster?

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  9. The Gymmy

    The Gymmy n00b

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    Our mission was to high tail it to Dawson Creek via Sault St Marie border crossing and around the North side of Lake Superior and then enjoy the ride. We had already done many of the area's on the way up on prior trips.

    We did not - We went fom Inuvik to Dawson City because the road was dry and excellent. We then went to the Top of the World highway and stayed in Fairbanks that evening.

    We then went to the Denali highway from west to east and stayed at Youngs in Tok. We then left for home from Tok.

    Great ride with no mishaps (thank God). 2nd time we have done the Alaska area.

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  10. MizzouRider

    MizzouRider Long timer Supporter

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    Nice to hear you got through to Tuk, even though it was raining. All I’ve read until this is total carnage on rainy days. Hopefully next summer (August) it’ll have enough gravel down to help with the slime and sticky mud.
    Good job on getting there. And BMWs, KTMs, and S10s in the same group. Nice!
  11. The Gymmy

    The Gymmy n00b

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  12. bkendig76

    bkendig76 Adventurer

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    Excellent Ride Report and stunning pictures. Thank you for putting this together! Looking forward to more.
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  13. txplants

    txplants Pastafarian

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    The only reason I log on to ADVRider anymore is inspiration. This ride report is the most inspirational I've read since joining. Stunning photos and story telling that is also instructive. You've got me looking at maps, calculating daily mileage, refining my packing checklist, and planning a departure date in 2019. Please keep it coming!
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  14. AdventureDude

    AdventureDude Explore More

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    Dynobob, thanks for your efforts to document the ride to Alaska! Very inspiring and informative!
  15. DYNOBOB

    DYNOBOB lucky dog

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    High praise and I thank you. I may sound like broken record .. but really do appreciate everyone's comments.

    Sorry for the delay in new posts - been spending quality time in the deer stand this week. :-) Almost have pics ready for Skagway post.

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  16. Bigbob1

    Bigbob1 Rain Rider Supporter

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    Good luck on your hunt with your grandson
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  17. DYNOBOB

    DYNOBOB lucky dog

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    Day 15 - Saturday August 18th - Haines, AK to Teslin, Yukon - 176 miles (283 km)

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    Well, two weeks down, one to go. Our day today hinges around getting on the already booked ferry to Skagway. Contrary to my expectation, there is one sailing at 1pm and we've been told on the phone that even the standby list is full. The ferry terminal opens at 8am and we are there hoping for a miracle. The staff confirms that it's booked and basically impossible that we'll get on today, but can get on standby for tomorrow. In these situations you're generally best served to stay polite and keep talking. Regardless of when we sail we have to purchase an $84 ticket, and during that process a different guy (the boss?) overhears that we are on bikes and says they should be able to fit us on today. I don't hate the sound of that. Tickets in hand and three hours to kill, we head 3 miles back to Haines for some breakfast. There are not a lot of options but luckily The Bamboo Room serves a fine bacon/egg/hashbrowns. We grab a few shots of town and get back to the ferry an hour before loading.

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    Data point: To travel between Haines and Skagway by road is a 400 mile (640 km) trip. 15 miles by water.
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    Staying polite and engaged with the staff serves us well. Leaving the terminal that morning we noticed a sweet Toyota FJ Cruiser like Shannon's and we guessed correctly which of the ladies it belonged to, you find little connections like that. After a little bit we can tell they're going to make every effort to get us on, and indeed we're the last vehicles to roll on, getting squeezed down the middle of the row of vehicles.

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    It's a 45 minute trip up the Taiya Inlet so we have time to wander around a bit.

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  18. DYNOBOB

    DYNOBOB lucky dog

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    A young couple from Haines on a KLR650 also got on at the last minute. They had both guided kayak trips along the coast and were a wealth of knowledge about coastal Alaska. For them it was just a weekend ride up to Whitehorse to see friends and return on the Haines Hwy the next day.

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    Because we were last on the boat, we were first off. It's 2pm AK time (3pm Yukon) when we arrive.


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    Skagway is a key player in the story of the Klondike gold rush and has a lot of history. Today however it is a major cruise ship day-stop and the whole town basically revolves around that. During the day it is flooded with thousands of tourists, someone said that most of the shops are actually owned by the cruise lines and the place kind of has an amusement park feel. Nonetheless we're thrilled to be here and celebrate with an ice cream stop.

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  19. DYNOBOB

    DYNOBOB lucky dog

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    I knew from reading Klondike Fever that if I ever made it to Skagway I would visit the old cemetery. It is a couple mile walk from the town area so only the hardcore tourists make it here.

    Background: The "easiest" route to Dawson City in 1898 was to steam to Skagway/Dyea, hike up/over Chilkoot Pass, and build a boat to float down the Yukon River. The sudden influx of thousands was a sure draw for scam artists and Jefferson "Soapy" Smith was the king. He ran an elaborate ring of con artists that fleeced many, many unsuspecting folks of all their money. This disgrace to Skagway went on for quite some time until the town surveyor Frank Reid could take no more and had a showdown with Soapy the evening of July 8, 1898. Frank shot and killed him instantly with his .38 pistol but received a fatal shot from Soupy's rifle himself. They are buried 30 feet apart.

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    "He gave his life for the honor of Skagway"
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    Do you think these folks would have guessed they'd be laid to rest in Skagway, Alaska...?

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  20. DYNOBOB

    DYNOBOB lucky dog

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    A few miles up from Skagway, the Taiya Inlet ends at the former town of Dyea. This is where goldrushers left the safety of 'civilization' and started climbing to Chilkoot Pass and into the wilderness. You can reach it with a short detour as you leave Skagway. It was originally my intention to camp at Dyea one night, I just thought it would be cool. As you wind around the mountain you get some nice views of town.

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    The tip of the Taiya Inlet

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    We ride up to the spot where hikers heading for Chilkoot Pass park and turn around.

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    In hindsight we probably should have camped at Dyea tonight. We had a day in hand from turning for home early and the weather was perfect.


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