My ride to Prince Rupert was short and pretty, no rain. Got a good nights rest.
Stood standby for the ferry, it was booked full, but they always seem to have space for motorcycles. $330.
Got on, and sailed to Port Hardy Vancouver Island. 16 hours, arriving at 11.30 PM
Fires still raging in central BC.
My friend Wayne from Williams Lake was visiting family in Alberta and can’t get home, as all roads to Williams Lake are closed and it has been evacuated.
As I was sitting reading my book, in the narrowest section of the inside passage with about a 100 foot or less cloud layer, here comes a Beaver, on floats, flying past. The Beaver is a favorite aircraft for bush-pilots.
Clouds and rain, for the first half, then just cloudy for the remainder, the water became very still and the scenery beautiful, not the ideal weather for seeing nor photographing the Inside Passage. However a good time to read. I have been trying for months to read “A Man Called Ove” finally got it read, yes, it’s a wonderful read.
Tomorrow I will ride the 290 miles to Victoria, take another ferry to Port Angeles Washington. Then I will visit my nephew in in Bainbridge Island, then fly home for a little break.
A 12 hour day of riding for me. Cold and wet until noon then very nice cool weather with some sunshine.
9 bears today, one of them a fur-ball cub that could not have been more than a few weeks old. The Cassiar Hwy is known for high bear sitings. A few years back, I saw 22 bears on the Cassiar in one day.
I first rode to Stewart BC then rode 1 mile north and was in Alaska again.. Stewart and Hyder share a shallow bay, open to the pacific.,
Hyder has the distinction of being the only US border crossing without a border inspection or customs presents, it probably has less than a hundred full time residents, and Is only assessable from Stewart. I first stopped at the Blue Bus for a delicious halibut sandwich. The owner told me just 2 nights before a bear had broken in and eaten all her food and drinking six Coca-Cola. The broken window the only serious damage, life can be tough in Alaska.
I then continued up a 20 mile gravel road to the Salmon Glacier.
Gassed up in Stewert then continued on to Terrace BC
Easy day tomorrow just 90 miles to Prince Rupert B C to take the ferry to Port Hardy Vancouver Island.
The Cassiar Hwy is the length of California and does not have even one of what you could call a village. None.
British Columbia is one huge Province. The northern part still not having summer while the southern part is burning up with heat and wildfires.
There are many bridges in Alaska and Canada, many riders fear these steel grate bridges but they are quite easy to master as long as you just ignore the small wobbling, the moto will straighten itself out without interference, save your fears for the steel plate bridges as the one in the Whittier Alaska railroad tunnel or the many wooden bridges found along the highways. When wet these are both deadly.
Another 11 hr day just to get 420 miles but took some long breaks.
Left Tagish at 6.30 am at 40 degrees, cold, rode 1 hr for breakfast then it started to rain, it continued all day.
My wettest and coldest day yet.
Saw one small black bear.
Rode down the Cassiar Hwy route 37. The road was really good, unusual because it has been challenging in the past with a 27 miles stretch of nasty gravel when wet, that has now been paved, the rain slowed me a little, but not much.
Now my challenge is all the fires in southern BC, the main north south road is closed, so will now go to Prince Rupert BC and take the ferry to Port Hardy Vancouver Island then to Bainbridge Island. USA.
It’s all part of life on the road.
I hate that part.
Little video leaving Dawson City , does not do the city justice. It sits along the Yukon River and is quite attractive In a tourist sense of the word .
Did see a beautiful Red Fox, the size of a coyote.
About 5 mikes short of Carmacks Yukon they were reworking a gravel section of the Hwy, they had just put on the final smooth gravel, but had not yet compacted it, when a rain storm came and made it about as slippery as a road can get, for about 3 miles, don’t know how I kept from falling, but did not. I was puckered up pretty tight.
Lunch in Carmacks, changed underwear and continued on to Whitehorse for gas, then down to Tagish for the night. Itkut Bc tomorrow. Big fires to the south, have to plan around them.
Eleven hour riding day via Delta Junction and Tok to the Top of the World Hwy. so called because of the vast vistas making you feel as though you are looking down on the world.
The road was in very good condition, paved within 3
miles of Chicken, then 40 mph gravel to the Canadian border, the Canadian side was mostly gravel, but 50+ mph.
Chicken got its name for the ptarmigan abundance, sometimes called prairie chicken, so they wanted to call it Ptarmigan. But they could not agree how to spell it so said hell let’s just call it Chicken.
Saw 3 moose today , one cow with a baby, they were just 20 ft off the road but I spooked them when I stopped, so just got this poor photo.
Had breakfast at Hill Top restaurant for the Reindeer sausage. Yum yum. Rode up to the beginning of the Dalton Hwy, decided not to continue north, heart not into it. This is not as fun as it once was, and I have a wonderful wife to get home to . Five times up that road was enough for me. Long and dangerous.
I will now, as safely as possible, head for home. It’s a long way.
It was 4400 miles getting here.
It will be less than 3000 with a more direct route, which at this point will take me along the Washington, Oregon and California coast.
In the am I will ride the 400 miles to Dawson City Yukon, via Tok and Chicken.
Put on new tires, I had shipped to my friend Scott here in Wasilla, also changed the oil.
Now ready for the real gravel.
I have known Scott for many years, when he was a pilot with Northwest Airlines.
Scott graduated from college, was an Air Force pilot then a airline pilot. He had a heart problem and was forced to retire, he chose Alaska, he is now a true Alaska mountain man, he hunts, fishes
and maintains his 4 acres of land , he is now putting up 10 cords of firewood for the winter. He is one of those fortunate people whom has found his perfect little niche in life.
I left Wasilla at 2 pm, stopped off for a few minutes in Talketna. Alaskas Cave Creek, rode by Denali, Ron and I had driven through the park several years ago, arrived Fairbanks at 9pm, all in total sun light. Sunset tonight 12.26 am, sunrise will be at 3.26 am. 75 degrees all day.
Tomorrow the Dalton.
I carried the tires from Scott’s only about 15 miles, but have carried tires from Arizona just like this.
Another 400 mile day, had breakfast in Tok Alaska. First 2 hours of rain then just cool and overcast.
Saw only one animal along the road and that was a small Yorky.
The stunted trees are not the result of fire nor desease, they are trying to survive growing on areas where the permafrost is very near the surface, perhaps only a foot or two below ground level. The seasonal thawing and freezing is what causes the heaving of the roads. So when you see the stunted trees you can be sure to will find bad roads. Pretty trees, nice roads, ugly trees bad roads. It’s the rule.
Tomorrow new tires and oil change, then Fairbanks.
So many riders, most going south.
Rained all day and cold, used heated vest and gloves for the first time this trip. Bad section of the Alaska Hwy, about 100 miles of heaving road with potholes and many areas repaired with chip-seal, made for slow going, rode only 355 miles today, spending the night in Beaver Creek Yukon.
Only 400 miles remaining for Wasilla. Alaska
Today I saw 1 coyote, 2 Black bear and the largest Grizzly I have ever seen, he was huge, twice the size of any Black bear, I have seen.
I spent about an hour talking with the riders in Destruction Bay. They all had stories to tell of there adventures on the Dalton Hwy and Deadhorse.
Another pretty day of riding. About 415 miles, of excelente road and weather, the all day rain forecasts turned in a few showers of 2 to 10 minutes, cool but not cold. The 20 miles of seal-coating was firm and allowed me to maintain my standard 60 mph.
Animal count today was 10 Black bear, one fox, one caribou.
The one Red/brown bear looks a little like a grizzly but Its actually a brown Black bear, I saw two of this variant.
The forest of signs is in Watson Lake Yukon.
Tomorrow will be a long day of 465 miles to Tok Alaska, no rooms available, so will camp out at Thompson motorcycle camp ground in one of their tents. I have no sleeping bag so will sleep in my cloths with my air mattress and Bivsac . I do have my plastic motorcycle cover for a blanket, and the temperature will be around 55 degrees so should survive. .
Next day only about 200 miles to my friends house in Wasilla. I will do an oil change and have my new, dirt tires mounted. I had them shipped before I left.
Probably won’t be able to Post again till I get there.
Riding the Alaska Hwy is less an adventure and more a pleasant excursion. It takes no special skill nor a special motorcycle. Just the will and desire.