Sunday, August 12, 2018

Hello There....

Home from the hospital and the work to recovery continues. It's improving, fortunately, thank goodness. It's time to kick-ass, take-names and move forward. On the top-side, I hope to be way, way better - if not back to normal - in about a month. The down-side is that I likely won't return to motorsickle riding until next year. Could be worse, I suppose. However, I just want to thanks to everyone for the help, support and understanding.



Saturday, August 4, 2018

Well, it has been an difficult two weeks

Unfortanely, I had a bad bike accident two weeks ago. My brain is trying to recover. In the meantime, i may try to post some random motorsickle photos. Hopefully, i will get there.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Getting Back to Things....

     Did a quick trip to the Blackhills with FM and fell behind on Christian's Tuk updates. Will get back on track with those soon enough. A couple of rants: why the fuck is everything in Sturgis/Blackhills called the "Ironhorse" blah blah blah  when referring to a motorcycle themed business? (hotel, restaurant, bar, t-shirt shop, etc....) Gawd, couldn't you have named your business something other than the most over-used motorcycle cliche? How about name your business, "I Simply Lack Imagination." Yeah, that would work.
     Rant No. 2: Any man who wears jeans with bedazzled back pockets shall be deducted 10,000 manhood points. Who wears these beside "bros" and desperate middle aged women? Also, over-stylized skull t-shirts will cost you 5,000 manhood points.

No. Don't do it.
 Meanwhile, here are a couple of picks from out there....

From the shop of Jerry Greer Engineering in Deadwood. They restore vintage Indians there.

Cool Indian Four out front of Jerry Greer Engineering on the streets of Deadwood.

Plenty of feral cows that freely roam the less traveled roads of the Blackhills. These bastards will stare you down.

   

Sunday, July 15, 2018

This Just In; The Latest from Tuk

Christian must have cell phone service today.....

July 15:
         This was a tough day. Ron remembered the 400 miles of hwy 4 from Watson Lake to Carmacks was paved. It was the first 50 miles or so, not counting the four miles of wet construction sand. Knowing that it was just a short section, it was kind of fun to practice the techniques I learned at DirtBikeTech.com, especially the part about lightening the front end when it threatens to wash out.
But after those 50 miles of pavement, it turned to dirt. Not bad dirt, but I thought it was just going to be for a few miles. Nope. After 25 miles we stopped to check if we were still on 4 ... and we were .. and the map shows it at gravel all the way to Furo.  About 280 miles of dirt, total. 75% of it was good hardpack;  we could do 45-50 mph, but once in a while there was a slick spot that we had to slow down for.
And it was remote. We saw maybe eight vehicles on that stretch of road. For comparison, 400 miles is the length of Montana. Or Red Wing to Sioux Falls and back. The main highway was on the other side of the mountains, so there was no reason for traffic to be on this road. The remoteness really made me homesick ... it would have awesome if I could have put the trip on hold and be home one day and then resume to trip. But nope, life doesn't work that way, so we just continued on.
Just before the halfway point (Ross River, where we fueled up) we passed a sign "the View - ADVRiders Welcome" (advriders.com is a motorcycle forum dedicated to off-pavement and remote riding). We turned off, rode up a short steep road and found a tiny 'resort' which has astounding views of the mountains. He has had guests from all over the world. We had a ways to go and couldn't stay, but he offered coffee and crackers and a spinach-like dip made from a local plant. If I'm in the area again this is a place to stop at.
After gassing up in tiny little Ros River we continued to Furo for dinner and then on to Camacks. The entire Hwy 4 was scenic, but the last 50 miles to Carmack were fantastic as the road hugged mountains on one side of the river. It was like a one-sided gorge. At ten pm we arrived at the hotel as the sun was setting, and even at midnight it was still light outside.

Apparently stealing signs from your hometown and leaving them in Alaska is a thing.



Our "mark" has been left for the Ages.

Helllooooooo? Is anyone out there?

The final frontier.

More Stuff From Out Thatta Way....

Pitchers and such from the Montana-Wyoming ride.....

A frame found by the roadside made for the perfect Kodak moment. Presumably, somewhere in Montana.

On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair. Warm smell of  colitas....

Evel gravesite in Butte, MT.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Son of More from Tuk

July 14:

     It was cold and wet in Hyder, and a little fog and a few clouds on the top of the mountains, but that didn't stop me from enjoying the views. Once out of the canyon we continued on hwy 37 north. The road went through some provincial parks packed with mountains ... we road for hours, about 400 miles, and the whole time we were surrounded by tall mountains, riding through one valley after another. There were a couple towns, very little traffic, on a road straight enough to support 100kph but curvey enough to be interesting. This is our fourth day riding through British Columbia ... the distances are staggering.
      We saw another black bear on the road and I turned my blinker on at him (BMW joke ....) ... he didn't care.
     In Dease Lake we got the most expensive fuel yet ... $165/100L, which works out to be $4.74/gal. At least I'm getting 42mpg.
     As we approached Watson Lake (our goal for the night) the terrain leveled out and we entered the Yukon Territory. yay! This is my first time here.
     It was cold and it threatened to rain, but a couple motels were charging $130 for mediocre rooms. I declined and we went to a $12 campsite where we proceeded to swat at many lazy mosquitoes. I had impregnated my long underwear, pants and fleece jacket with permethrin at home, and it was working very well, not a single bite on my legs arms or torso. My rain hat with netting over it prevented them from getting to my face (and they tried!) but it was my hands which were exposed. I did get a couple bites there, but thankfully Ron was attracting most of the them. Interestingly, the next day, the bites on my hands did not itch the next day .... so while the skeeters came out in high numbers equal to an average summer day in the Boundary Waters, they lacked speed and potency. But we still have another 1000 miles to head north. See what I mean about distances?
Since the skeeters made camping "not fun" we rolled into town for dinner and a beer. On our return, we broke out the Thermacell which, after 30 minutes, seemed to keep them at bay long enough to enjoy a beer. At abou 10pm, still in full daylight, we rolled into bed. And around 10:45 I heard a series of loud bangs ... either someone is a very bad shot or they are setting of fireworks, while it is still light out.





It's All About Tuk

More from on the road to Tuk.


July 11
     We've seen a little wildlife so far ... no bears or moose despite warnng signs, a couple large deer and lots and lots of ants . On my tent. Damnit. Luckily only a couple inside.
Leaving Cache Creek we finished up the dry canyon and ascended to the alpine prairie for many hundred miles. The temperature went down to 65F and the while not exactly flat, the terrain wasn't very interesting. The trees were much shorter. In many ways, it reminds me of northern Norway. Lots of wildflowers.
     A long ride later we stopped in Vanderhoof to get gas. The first station we stopped had no fuel, the one next door did, so we got in line. Then we looked for a hotel room as it promised to rain, but the weather report clamed otherwise, and 38 km down the road there was a free municipal campground.  Free is good, so off we went to Swan Lake.
     Sure enough it was free, but no water. Set up camp, swapped the three mosquitoes, ate a sandwich, went to sleep. And listened to the trains 30 yards away. One at 10pm, another two around 2am. Oh well, free is good.


July 12
     I hit two milestones today.
     The first was that this was my 'transition day'. That's the day of vacation which I no longer think much about work or my responsibilities at home (car and home maintenance, financial things etc). When I travel west this usually happens around Wyoming. It frees up my mind to think about family, friends, and where I am.
     The second is we made it to Alaska. Ok, it's only Hyder, the southernmost point one can drive to from the lower 48, but it's still Alaska, and its the first time I've been here.
     The ride along Hwy. 16 was more of the same as yesterday, with many trucks. Most of those continued to Prince Rupert, while we turned north Hwy. 37, noting the signs of no fuel for 180 km. And for once, my cell service was faltering. The ride was definitely more mountainous, and we had a strong headwind. But the show really started when we turned west on 37A towards Hyder. Those 40 miles were incredibly scenic, as it went down a canyon 2000 feet deep. Glaciers, waterfalls, a roaring river, and even a black bear on the road. But it was raining lightly. Darn.
     Ron was rushing to get to the post office to send a postcard but he didn't make it. The general store provided it for him instead. We ate at "The Bus" where an old lady served fish that her family fished - usually halibut and then some other stuff. The halibut fish and chips was excellent, probably the best I've had. We checked into the first hotel of the trip and am looking forward to riding the canyon back to Hwy 37 with better weather in the morning.

Hello There....

Home from the hospital and the work to recovery continues. It's improving, fortunately, thank goodness. It's time to kick-ass, take-...