Having trouble uploading pictures with this post. I'll add them later.
June 17, 2011, Day 8: Got up early today with every intention of hitting the road early. My plan was to be on the road by 7am. After I woke, I looked outside and saw that the rain was still coming down. I also checked the radar map and saw the storm, yellow and red, which is BIG rain.
Also I had a bit of an adventure trying to take a shower. I could not for the life of me find the knob to turn on the shower. I could get the water going but the lever to start the shower was elusive! So after about 5 minutes of standing there naked (scary), I broke down and called the front desk.
“front desk, how may I help you?”
“uh......yea......I am trying to take a shower and I can’t figure out how to turn it on”
So she explains that there is a circle you pull down under the spout where the water comes out, but not too fast or it won’t work......huh? not work?
So I see what she ment and took a shower. I shot a video of the shower, showing the faucet, so you can see that I am not stupid......:)
After showering I made my way to the breakfast and spoke to a welder who was on his way to work, except he couldn’t because of the rain. Apparently, welding and water don’t mix:)
I also spoke with the front desk girl when she wandered into the breakfast room. I joked with her about the shower and she said hold on a minute, then returned with a prop shower that the hotel uses to show the guests how to operate it. I told her I tried the Jedi mind trick on it before I called but it didn’t work......
So I delayed my departure about 2 hours and when the rain stopped, I quickly checked the radar again and saw the gap between two storms. North was wide open. Quickly I packed the bike and got dressed, checked out and hit the road North on 43 from Whitecourt, AB
I drove about a hundred miles and stopped for gas. It was raining on and off the whole way. I think the miles and gas stops just flow together sometimes. I eventually rolled into Dawson Creek and fueled up at a shell station.
Also decided that since it was 1230 that I should have some lunch, which was a spaghetti and meat sauce MRE and MRE Pineapple. The food supply is getting low, but I have a package in Tok, Alaska waiting for me with more food. Anyway, I talked to a 20 year old kid outside while I was eating. He said that he came up to see his brother because his brother had a child, then his brother died. So he’s looking to get out of the town and head to “Surrey”......
Anyway, back on the road, heading to the center of Dawson Creek, where I took a picture of the famous sign, then headed north on the Alaska Highway...yea for me....
There is a little bit of Hawaii in Dawson Creek.....Aloha!
My first gas stop, I came to a full service station where mom was working inside and the brother and sister were working the pumps. Cleaning windshields, checking oil, etc. They were covered with dirt, but seemed “happy in their work” (sans Bridge on the River Kawi).
The girl pumped my gas and said she liked my sheep skin seat cover. It was kind of funny, she was johnny on the spot with the pump, but I have a whole procedure to dismount the FJR......stop....shut the bike off, in gear, removed plug from radio.....remove helmet...remove ear buds.....dismount bike......unplug heated vest.....find spot to put helmet......unsnap the back of the tank bag.....swing bag to the side.....get keys from the ignition, unlock gas cap......and finally tell her Ok to pump the gas.....I of course apologized for my delay......
So back on the road again and eventually stopped for gas again.....it was raining on and off the whole way. Saw some more wildlife, a grey fox and a moose really close to the road. Also saw several other ADVer’s heading south on the Alaska Highway, we waved. I think one guy was from twitter.....can’t remember his name off hand.....
I crossed into British Columbia somewhere/sometime, I can’t remember.
I saw some awesome Beaver!
I stopped at 100 miles to refuel again, because of several signs and the maps showed big gaps between to town’s. This time is was $1.699!!! zoinks!!!....the gas station was a mud pit and I was very leery about the bike falling over
While I was pumping gas, I saw 3 harley guys and a goldwing guy drive by together. It took me a while to get going and I caught up to them in about an hour when I saw them pulled over to the side of the road. One guy was towing a small trailer that he carried extra fuel in, which he was adding to his tank. We talked a bit and I found out they were from Minnesota and they were heading to Fairbanks. I asked if I could follow them for a bit and they accepted.
We hit the road and eventually they pulled into a hotel, I kept heading north, stopping for gas once again in Fort Nelson. As I was pumping gas I heard a small bike. Looking over, I see a guy on what I think is a 125 or 250cc bike all Adventure Rider’d up, with Givi bag, pannier’s and they guys wearing an Aerostich jacket. I quickly caught up to him and I gave him a wave as I passed by slowly, he waved back and we both headed north on the Alaska Highway.
After about 50 miles, I pulled into Tetsa River Campground, really nice area on a river. $17 for the night. As I pulled in, I saw an older couple walking along the roadway near the entrance, I gave them a wave and did a loop of the grounds, eventually ending up back at the main gate. My intention was to grab the envelope for a campsite and deposit it in the metal box.
The struck up a conversation with me and told me that they took a picture of a father and son on a motorcycle trip last year at the Arctic circle sign on the Haul Road. I new exactly who they were from ADV but I can’t remember off hand. Funny too, the couple was from Bay City, Michigan...where I used to live in the 90’s. They even knew exactly where the condo’s were I lived in near the community college, Bay Valley Condo’s.
Went to get some water.....boil before consumption:) and took pictures of the Tetsa River....