Thursday, June 18, 2015

On the Road again...

Majestic Mt Robson,  Highest point in the CDN Rockies

Well... I didn't freeze my posterior off that first day, but came pretty darn close!  It is after all still spring, until the 21st.  I shivered through Drayton Valley, warmed up a bit gassing up in Entwhistle, while having a chat with two guys on a Honda Shadow 750 and a BMW F 650 (with the 800 twin engine).  They were heading for Revelstoke and even though they invited me to join them, I was traveling in a different direction.  

With a 10L fuel capacity I was filling up every 120-150 km.  While the bike delivers about 65mpg, there can be long stretches on western highways with limited fuel supplies.  Miss one gas stop and I'd be thumbing!

Jasper came and went, I didn't bother going into the townsite.  Instead I continued west to the junction of Yellowhead south, route 5.

The Yellowhead Pass

After a long day's total of 530km on the big single, I pulled off the road at 5 pm local Pacific time and quickly settled into the Yellowhead Motel where Francis checked me into a clean and tidy single room.

Terry and Milt Good peoples!
Pretty isn't it!

Within minutes a pair of Harley's rode in.  Milt was on a decker and his long time sweetie Terry, on a trike. I sat and chatted with the couple from Red Deer, on their holidays to the Okanagan, where I too will eventually spend a few days off the road visiting with family.  I have to admit, I always find motorcyclists in every province, every country, who are interesting, intelligent and fun.  I mentioned to Milt and Terry that if we were running the country, it would be more efficient, more honest, less wasteful and more fun to boot:)

The next day I left Valemont in a drizzle that soon cleared up, and I enjoyed sunny skies for the entire day.  

The ride south was nothing like the last time I was through here, when it was raining so hard, it got me on the way down and having bounced off the pavement twice more!

Simple. clean and affordable.

After filling Thumper in Blue River, where the ex and I had problems with the BMW in '76.  The electrics were drowned by the torrential downpour and we had to overnight in a room that had plumbing problems, but being the only show in town, we took it.  This time round, the Suzuki and I breezed right through without a hitch.  By the time I cleared Clearwater... the temperature had climbed substantially and I was shedding clothing.  
Is this the picture of a Bad Boy!?

I had a bit of difficulty finding Ron's trailer park having been given some directions by a resident of a nearby park that sent me in the opposite direction.  I eventually clued in and landed late in the afternoon but a day early.  

I was pleased to be off the road in the 30 plus degree heat, and satisfied that the Suzuki had done so well.  Apart from leaking fork seals which I band aided before leaving the Motel, I'd had no problems.  Even though the bike was never designed by the gang at Hamamatsu for traveling long distance, being essentially a street cruiser, she had got me here without tormenting me too much and I had to admit, with that low slung seat, flat bar and peanut tank... I was feeling a bit of a "Bad Boy".

Roadside fix, to keep fork oil off my knees.
Ron and I made a tour round the local bike shops before stopping at a local Wendy's for my obligatory "road food" a burger and fries with an ice cold Coke to wash it all down.

It was great to be greeted by an old friend once again, he and I have known each other since Fort Mac days and as you that ride will attest, the bond shared by motorcyclists may even be stronger than that shared by many married couples!  The biker family is like none other on earth.

Thumper and I had arrived in Kamloops!

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