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Motorcycle Hammock-Camping

The Best Midlife Crisis We Could Think Of

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Great Motorcycle Ride

Caution Elk and Truck Tires

What a great night! 

NMBL and I both slept very well at Waitabit Creek campground. It’s a wonderful site. We feel guilty mentioning it because more people may want to go. Still, it’s worthy of mention. We woke up to a beautiful sunrise in the mountains with the creek talking to us as coffee was made, breakfast served, and cleanup done. The water of the creek is a vibrant turquoise blue which just glows in the morning sun. We couldn’t have asked for a better way to start the day.

We were on the road fairly quickly but unhurriedly. Our end goal for the day was Calgary, an easy ride with some time to make stops along the way. Beyond gas and food, we had few other goals. 

The Trans Canada Highway through the Rockies offers some of the most beautiful scenery anywhere. There was quite a bit of construction along the way but that just gave us a better opportunity to view the grand vistas on offer. We rode past sheer rock cliffs, densely forested mountainsides, deep blue lakes, and meandering valley bottom rivers. All the while we traveled windy mountain highway. It was a motorcyclists dream. The great thing is that there’s more to come on the way home. 

We rode through both Yoho and Banff National Parks. It was NMBL’s first time through by road. She was absolutely awed by the scenery. I hadn’t been through in years and I was awed as well. We had to stop in Lake Louise going through Banff. It’s such a touristy thing to do but the lake and surrounding mountains really are spectacular. If you’ve never seen Lake Louise go Google a picture now and take a look. We’ll wait…

Done? Good. Now picture that in your mind’s eye but incredibly better. Because the real thing is incredibly better! Again, NMBL had never been here so taking her to the lake was a special treat. She said it was like the postcards only in real HD. The pictures we took will be spectacular but picture them in your mind incredibly better. 

We saw some very odd things on our trip eastward. For one, there were all these Caution Elk on Highway signs. Neither of us saw any Caution Elk but we can only imagine that they wear hi-viz vests and carry some sort of caution sign. Possibly to help other elk cross the highway while slowing traffic to facilitate. We’ll keep you posted as we find out more.

Another odd, and scary, thing happened when we were being passed by an 18 wheeler that we had passed a bit earlier. His trailer’s rear wheels were just past parallel with me, riding point, when the rear tire blew out. A piece of the tire whipped past my left shoulder and hit NMBL in the chin and chest. “Ooh! That tire hit me!” came over the intercom into my ears. I asked her if she was alright and checked my rear mirror. She was still on the bike and moving along. Apparently it didn’t even hurt! Fortunately it was just a hunk of the tire and not the whole thing. Otherwise it would have unseated her. 

We talked about the tire incident as we rolled down the highway. That is the first time in 15 years of riding that this has ever happened to her but she had wondered what would happen if a hunk of tire flew off a truck. On a subsequent stop she found a hunk of tire on her gear. We’re keeping it. Expect a picture of that too!

That’s it for today. We’re in Calgary right now, safe and sound, staying at the Ramada downtown. No camping tonight, and that was planned, but it’s a good thing we’re not hanging. There’s severe weather rolling through he area right now. The wind has caused damage just north of here with a major storm coming up in the next few hours. Hopefully it passes by the time we have to leave tomorrow.

Happy night all!

DES out.

On the Road Again

Willie Nelson has been going through my head the last few days. Darned ear worms. We’re sitting at our campsite near Donald B.C. relaxing for a bit. Saturday we set out on our three week tour through the Canadian Rockies and into the Prairies. The weekend was spent with family in the North Okanagan which always involves good company and good food. We’ll be back to visit them again towards the end of the trip.

Today took us along Hwy 97 north through Enderby and past Mara Lake. The ride was beautiful; I regret not putting the camera on my helmet for that stretch. We rolled on to the interchange with the Trans Canada, making our way east to Revelstoke. We were told about a great little coffee shop there called The Modern Café so, like the good west coast coffee snobs that we are, we made our way there. The Modern did not disappoint. They serve one of the best Americanos either of us has had! 

From Revelstoke we headed east. Our goal was to get to a place called Donald. NMBL had done some research and found a free B.C. Forrest Service campground called Waitabit Creek. This meant that we weren’t riding for as long as we had for most of our days on the road last year. Spending six or seven hours on a bike is hard work, especially when you go for two weeks straight. This year we decided to shorten our ride time each day. It’s so much better. Today was an enjoyable day of riding, going through the mountains and over the Rogers Pass. The campground was relatively easy to find and we got in at 2pm… that left us plenty of time to set up camp, have dinner, go for a walk, and meet some fellow campers. No stress! We didn’t go pillar to post leaving little time for anything else.

So here we are at Waitabit Creek. It’s lovely. NMBL and I couldn’t be happier. We’re currently both in our hammocks; she’s reading and I’m blogging. We had a nice dinner and sat by the camp fire while a bit of rain came down. It was a casual rain. The kind that no self respecting Vancouverite would ever open an umbrella for. A drop here and there. Noticeable, but not worthy of action. We were indifferent to it. The fire ignored it completely. The already swollen waters of the river moved by without giving it much notice as well. A completely unremarkable rain but an enjoyable evening.

We’ve lived on the coast for too long.

Tomorrow we ride into Calgary though this post won’t likely be up until we get there. So it’s a post from the past mostly in the present tense? Mostly. Now I’m just rambling. It’s time to sleep. By the way, this new hammock is excellent. It’s going to need a review. Soon.

DES out.

Pemberton Flat Track Races

NMBL and I did something different this past weekend. We went to a racetrack. And we traveled up to Pemberton to do it. For those of you who haven’t heard of Pemberton, it’s a town just north or Whistler, BC’s most popular and famous ski resort. The trip up to Pemberton is done on the Sea-to-Sky Highway which, as we’ve written before, is a great stretch of highway to ride. It’s arguably the most popular ride among motorcyclists in Greater Vancouver! The ride up there offers spectacular scenery and fun curvy stretches of asphalt. So much fun!

Continue reading “Pemberton Flat Track Races”

Colorado Adventure Day Two: Back on Track 

Naches to Yakima was an easy go. We stopped for gas in Yakima and chatted with Mike a man I met  in  the  Arco parking  lot, asking first for directions and then discussing life in general. I looked over at NMBL for a second, felt something in my hand, and Mike had put $40 there! He had just won some money and wanted us to have breakfast on him. We paid it forward and tipped our waitress at Denny’s well. Thanks so much Mike! Continue reading “Colorado Adventure Day Two: Back on Track “

Pac Northwest Day 4: Homeward Bound

March 28, 2016, DES reporting.

We woke up to ice on our bikes and tarps. Woke up might be the wrong turn of phrase. The cold kept both of us from actually having a good sleep. Fortunately neither of us was damp from the rain/ice as that would have made things worse. Being in a hammock was great but I was having issues with my under-quilt in particular and my feet were freezing as a result, even with wool socks and my good sleeping bag. Continue reading “Pac Northwest Day 4: Homeward Bound”

Pac Northwest Day 2: The Whoops and the Wee

26 March 2016, DES reporting.

So, the hammock camping advice out there in the interwebs tells you all about making sure you don’t hang too taut. But, I haven’t seen anything about hanging too loose. Nada. Nothing. My advice: don’t do it.

Continue reading “Pac Northwest Day 2: The Whoops and the Wee”

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