Rearview Mirror

Well today marks and interesting milestone for me. 

As of today I have had my motorcycle license for four years. Nothing super important, but a neat little mile marker, and an excuse to pause for a sec and take stock. 

I write this as I embark upon the next major chapter in my life. A 2year+  journey down through Central and South America. I'm headlong into the planning and preparation stages of the trip, scheduled to leave Canada in a year's time. Definitely lots of hard work, earning, saving, planning and dedication ahead of me. But for the moment I'm glancing back in the rearview mirror.

As a kid I had a dirt bike on the farm. That was almost 30years ago, and although it planted the seed way back then, it took until recently for the little bugger to sprout. But oh boy, sprout it did...

In the four years now that I've been riding I've purchased 2 bikes, logged over 85000km and have been all over North America. Including Prudhoe Bay Alaska, Inuvik North West Territories, across Canada, USA, and Baja California, Mexico. 

That works out to something like 59km per day since I've had my license. Not bad if you consider there was a life and a full time job in there as well. But peanuts compared to some of the travelers I know who are out there living it. 

None the less though, it's been an exciting and addicting adventure. 

Traveling and discovery is fuel for your soul and it inspires curiosity, independence and fulfillment. It breaks down complacency in day to day routine and replaces it with excitement, filling us with anticipation and tolerance for whatever may be around the next corner. 

We meet people that enlighten us, and inspire us, and it feeds our love for the human spirit. Interesting and random connections with strangers turn into sometimes lifelong friendships.

The kindness and curiosity of people on the road is totally amazing to me. One second you're oiling your chain or grabbing a quick sandwich at a gas station, the next you're engaged in a full on conversation with someone about who knows what. It's the connections and human touch of the people we meet along the way that make the long paved highways or sketchy gravel mountain passes so much more beautiful. More often than not, a breakdown or a flat tire is more of a good thing than a bad. 

It's been a fun four years behinds the bars of a motorcycle. I'm in it for the long haul now that's for sure. And as I head south, the next four are sure to be some of the best of my life. Who knows where that road leads... I can only imagine. 

Pretty sure I'll need some more tire patches and chain oil though. 

Daver Coe

Daver's Adventure Travels

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June 20, 2012 Whitehorse to Watson Lake.

Nice ride today. No rain, ok a little in patches... But sunny and warm. Gave up on counting bears again today. They're everywhere! Cute little black bears gorging on dandelions.
Stopped for fuel coffee and a sandwich in Teslin. The longest steel grate bridge I've ever seen is there and it's a bloody nightmare I've been less than looking forward to for the last few hundred miles. I have new tires on the bike, with deep knobies! Crossing a bridge like that makes the tires of any vehicle sway back and forth to where ever the steel wants. Bad enough in a car. But on a bike it's a puckering experience! And worse if you have knobies.
Thankfully I'd have to tackle the bridge after stopping for gas and lunch. :)
Met a couple dudes heading north.
Scott Haskins, who's heading up to Prudhoe to start his Pan-American trip south to Ushuaia and his buddy Ralf Bendjebar who's riding with him for the Canadian/US portion. Good guys. I'll post a link when I find it.

Got into Watson Lake and dropped in on my Scottish friend at the RV Park.
He doesn't accommodate tent camping anymore since having an issue with some mushroom pickers in the area. But made an exception for me and gave me some awesome bumper stickers to boot!
"EAT MOOSE! 12,000 wolves can't be wrong!"
Nothing says "The North" like that. Lol
Classic Yukon humor.
Did some laundry and asked the bike nicely to not leak any more fork oil.
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June 19, 2012 Beaver Creek to Whitehorse

Back in Whitehorse. Man it's dark here!
Staying at the Robert Service Campground. I knew I should have just pitched-it behind the Yukon Arts Centre, with Andrew the house sound technician there. He's been living in a tent to save some money while he waits for a new apartment to free up, the first of the month.
Well, they want $25 here. Then charged me $10 for 8 hours of wifi. And apparently $2 per 5min for the shower. I'm not even going to mention the laundry costs. Maybe I'm being cheep but... C'mon. Oh and, I got in late so there's actually no WiFi because the power automatically gets turned off to that building at 11pm. Even though I payed for it in the office. Oh and I don't have tokens for the shower, and the office is now closed. So ya, awesome. If I hadn't been already set up before I realized the wifi and shower fail, I think I'd leave. Oh well maybe they'll bring coffee right to the tent door tomorrow morning, but I'm not holding my breath.

On a good note though:
Ran into some great guys on their way north today. From Calgary no less!!
Both on BMW 650s. One, a new G650GS Sertao. And the other dude on an X-Challenge -with a rally conversion!
God I love that bike. And he did a nice job on the rally fairing too! Looking forward to hearing how their trip turns out. Dempster highway, and D2D (Dust To Dawson motorcycle gathering)
I gave them my spare clutch and break levers. Its not likely I'll need them, and attempting that highway without those little spare parts can ruin a trip. Happy to offer the help fellas, ride safe. Call me when you're back in Calgary.
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June 13, 2012 Fairbanks to Cold Foot

Coming soon...
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June 12, 2012 Beaver Creek to Fairbanks.

Coming soon...
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June 11th Whitehorse to Beaver Creek

NORTH! To Alaska, go north the rush is on!!

There's something to be said for setting off on a journey or pushing on to continue an adventure after recharging and regrouping. The feeling of independence, self reliance and complete wonder is totally engulfing.

I'm heading north. Names like Chicken, Dawson, Tok, Fairbanks, Valdez and Prudhoe Bay are just fantasies. Like New York City to many people. They are far off places that are soaked with history, myth and fantasy. Legendary, timeless places from books and maps and 4am google-athons.
It feels like there's a tailwind. The lust for everything that ADV sticker stands for is in full spring-fever heat. And I'm just along for the ride.

Running into more and more guys on bikes, with that same fire in their eyes.
Beemers, Stroms, Teneres, KLRs, Harleys, Wings. Even a few sweet side-cars. Still not sure where a trike sits though. Rides like a bike, but steers like a car. Same goes for side cars too I guess, but some how they're still cool. Jury's out on the damn trikes though. Especially the (eyes rolling) blown out tricked out gusshy FLH Electra-glide, soft, fluffy, wide tail, too old and fat to get on a real bike kinda guy, trikes. Seriously guys?
God I love my little Beemer-thumper. Snotty, tall, quick and light. With all-you-wanna-cary panniers and 60MPG... Just not sure what to think of those Alabama-RV Harley trikes with pop trailers.
I'll need some more helmet time to ponder it. Haha

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June 7th, 2012 Watson Lake to Whitehorse

Roads? Where we're going we don't need roads!

Wow, I guess it's my lucky day, I missed the road washing out by less than an hour, apparently.
When I rolled into Whitehorse, I went straight to the airport to meet Chip.  We were just in time to head to the Arts Centre for the set up and prep for the festival. As I pulled in to the parking lot a few of the volunteers mentioned that the road had washed out... Yeah! The main Highway! Like,  Highway 1. Otherwise known as the Alaska Highway, you might have heard of it. Well apparently with all the rain they've been having (yeah I know I've been riding in it) there was a mud slide and flood that washed out a decent section of the highway.  They were almost surprised to see me, wondering all along if I had made it through in time. I remember seeing the spot earlier that day where it must have blasted through. The guys said it happened at about 10:30am... "um, weird, that would have been about the time I came through there..."
Eyebrows went up. Needless to say, I'm glad I made it.

Sure is nice to get a warm, dry, fancy, hotel room for the weekend, because man, the gear and this soggy-bottom-boy sure need it!!

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