mostly just for me. and for motocompy

7 July 2006

July 6: Where to Begin

by admin


So much has happened since I last wrote…it’s pretty difficult to know where to begin or what to write about without droning on and on and boring you all to tears.  Since the morning of the third, I’ve ridden about 1800 miles through Washington, British Columbia and now the Yukon.  I’ll try to sum up the last three days in a not-so-painfully long synopsis.  The drive up from Seattle began with familiar territory.  My Mom and Dad and brother Kevin and I had taken a road trip a couple years back that took us through the southern and eastern parts of BC.  Things changed rather quickly as I made headway North, however, and soon I was finding myself in large canyons with rushing rivers and huge rock slides on either side.  It was hot, too.  Somewhere in the mid 90’s someone told me later on.  No fun.  I did Subway for lunch and dinner that day.  Quality.  I’m looking to take over for Jerrod in their new ad campaign.  I camped near Clinton, BC that night…nothing too spectacular, just a place to set up shop.  View from the TentI celebrated July 4th by waking up and driving to Smithers.  Honestly, at this point, I can’t remember a whole lot from that drive.  I’m sure it was beautiful, but the days are kindof running together at this point.  The ones that really stand out in my mind are the 5th and 6th.  The 5th was a long one, almost 600 miles, and was crazy all the way around.  It started in Smithers where I began the day with my now familiar routine which tends to be a bit different depending on whether I’m camping or staying somewhere.  Hotel:  Try to get up by 7:30, take a shower, finish whatever I’m doing with Motocompy for the trip and put away all the cords/wires that I don’t need, pack everything else up, load up the bike, get all my gear on, get on the road.  Campground: Wake up whenever I wake up, which usually is when the sun comes up or the birds start up with their noise, (by the way, it was nice and bright at 5:30 this morning, but I’ll get to that later on), skip the shower (I get that the night before to save time and because I really need it after riding all day), wrestle with my tent and sleeping bag and all of my stuff (and all the mosquitoes), somehow get everything to fit onto the bike and try to leave at a reasonable time.  Typical CampI got on the road by about 9 and headed west towards the 37.  Highway 37 is a strange road, ranging in quality from newly paved to unpaved loose gravel, and everything in between.  The most abundant version was a type of pavement with filled potholes and no lane markers.  I spent most of the day on the 37 and ran the emotional gamut.  Probably the funniest part of the day was when another motorcycle passed me and was about 200 yards up the road.  A moose came up onto the road, saw him there, got scared to death and tried to turn around.  In the process he kindof slipped and tripped over his own legs and it wasn’t until I got up there that he had regained his composure and had headed back into the trees.  I got it on video, but it’s pretty difficult to see at such low resolution (it happens right around the 30 second mark).

I finished up the day by entering the Yukon (which felt like driving onto the moon because there had been a fire nearby and the smokey haze and crazy, rocky terrain made things feel, well, moonlike.)  I spent the night at a campsite at the junction of the 1 and the 37.  Morning came early, like I said before, and I had to cover my face with a t-shirt to get a couple more hours of sleep.  (By the way, it’s 12:15am and it’s still light outside as I write this here in Haines Junction.)  Today’s roadway was much more even and predictable, the weather, however, was not.  Grey, dark skies, thunder, lightning, downpours, wind gusts….all made for some interesting riding.  Mean cloudsI road by more gigantic, beautiful lakes than I can remember.  The Yukon River was beautiful as were the mountains that greeted me from behind Haines Junction.  I head for Alaska on the 7th and will probably encounter more showers on the way.  By the way, Motocompy faired rather well in his rain clothes.  The screen isn’t very usable, but it still plays music and tells me where to go.  Pictures below, and yes, that is a freezer bag covering up the touchscreen.  Classy.  Ok, my eyes are hurting so I think I’m going to stop typing and finish up the photos and video in the morning…er, later this morning.  I hope this post finds everyone well.  Thanks for taking this trip with me.  Your prayers, thoughts, emails, comments are great…keep them up.  Goodnight to you all. (Videos and pictures below as well as on my Flickr site which you can get to by clicking on any of these pictures here.  GPS from yesterday here and here.)

Ready for Rain Yukon River Nearing the End of the Rain Outside my room Glove HandsRain Jacket