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Thread: Indianapolis to Anchorage

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Danville, IN USA

    Indianapolis to Anchorage

    WOW!!! What an amazing trip. Indianapolis to Anchorage and back. The goal was to see if I could even do it. There was a time limit of 30 days. Enough, but not enough to explore as much as I would have liked to. Weather is a definite factor in deciding if you spend another night to see something or move on. I still work and taking the entire summer off was not an option at this time. I'm in my late 50's for those who care or want to have a point of reference, but I can see now why there are so many "old guys" who do this trip. It's because they have the time. I met a gentleman in Whitehorse who had been stuck at the Robertservice Campground for 12 days waiting for a clutch cable for his 1150 or 1100 GS from Edmonton and truly had an amazingly happy personality in spite of his adversity. He was all set up in his Redverz tent using the garage portion as a grand entry/dressing room, bike excluded, his kermit chair and all other necessary items well protected in that amazing "garage" portion of the tent. He was taking the whole summer for his ride and was well prepared to spend as much time as needed. Another rider I met on my first night camping in Cotton Bay, Ontario on Lake Superior gave me inspiration. She was probably in her late 50's also, from California on her way back from the East coast having just spent 4 days on the road in the rain. She was solo because her husband does not like to ride, and she won't let that hold her back. We talked about Alaska and her first comment was "that was an easy ride". I didn't ask her what was a hard ride, and she was on a 650GS vs my ride being a R1200RT. Going to Alaska is quite an accomplishment on a motorcycle. Even more so on a bicycle, but that is another story by another person. Besides seeing the scenery, and actually doing the ride, meeting so many nice people was the best part. The 2 guys I met in Laird Hot Springs and had breakfast with until 10 in the morning before getting on the bike again. The Ukrainian kids at the Laird Hot Springs who I spent an hour with talking in Russian. For the truly great Barb at Alaska Leather who rattled off half a dozen hotel names and then called several of them for room availability and then remembered The Sockeye Inn and escorted me there when I had shown up at her store at 5 minutes till closing. The guys at the Motorcycle Shop in Anchorage, who took me in for an oil change first up in the morning and to whom I owe for a T-shirt they forgot to ring up and I didn't notice until later. They also advised me of my tread wear and recommended new tires for the remainder of the trip, I remembered that at the Canadian Customs going back into the Yukon on the ALCAN with my second flat and taking 3 plugs to fill the hole and then riding until one in the morning on a prayer and a promise to Whitehorse. To the guys at the Honda dealership in Whitehorse who took me right in for a new set of tires. Pirelli Angel ST's which are not listed for the R1200RT but should be in my opinion, and are particularlily well suited for the chip seal roads of the far north. The Michelin P3's were too soft for a trip to Alaska. They Pirelli's made the trip back to Indy safe and comfortable for over 3000 miles, and handled the twisties of the Colorado Rockies especially Poudre Canyon very well, thankyou. The German campground attendant at the first Provincial campground south of Dease Lake who set up a campfire for me at no additional charge. Bitteschoen for helping me dry out and warm up. So many really nice people. And one gentleman I particularily remember having breakfast with in Whitehorse who was there for the summer from Quebec ,to help build a house for his daughter. How genuinely happy he was to run into me again on my return through Whitehorse at the Tim Hortons and how very sincerely he wished me a safe return trip home. Many, many thanks to all the people that were so very nice and pleasant to talk with. The last gentleman I remember was in the far western end of Kansas in a town known for its Pony Express history, how excitedly he came over to me as I was refueling, and telling me how he had just finished a weeks worth of corn detasseling and couldn't wait to get on his brand new Kawasaki Concourse 1400 to ride to Estes Park, Colorado, with his wife driving the shag wagon. Then he asked where I was coming from, and I told him Alaska. He almost popped with excitement. It was an amazing trip and I'm glad that I had the opportunity to do it. I am thankful to my Wife for not giving me any grief, but supporting me the whole way. If you have the opportunity, do it. If you don't, make the opportunity, make it happen. Don't make excuses. It doesn't have to be Alaska, but whatever ride you want to do, just do it. You won't regret it, only if you don't do it will you regret it.

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
    What a fantastic trip. SoCal to Alaska is definitely on my list, also hopefully before I retire. And, hopefully not involving 12 days at a campground waiting for a clutch cable. (How does that work? Will the USPS deliver to a campground space number?)

    (BTW, you may want to get your keyboard looked at. After all that travel, it appears the Enter key has broken.)
    2000 R1100RT / 1987 K75C (RIP) / Santa Clarita, CA

  3. #3
    Registered User richardak's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Fairbanks, AK
    Quote Originally Posted by JamesInCA View Post
    What a fantastic trip. SoCal to Alaska is definitely on my list, also hopefully before I retire...
    Last summer, I went from Fairbanks, AK, to Santa Cruz, CA, and back on my thirty year old airhead. I would put it in the "easy ride" category as it really isn't that different than riding across the continent. I did ~500 miles per day and camped while coming through Canada (plenty of campgrounds). Once I hit southern BC, it was just too hot. I blogged about my trip here. This was trip #18 but the first on a motorcycle. Next year, with a sidecar.

    For anyone thinking of riding to Alaska, there is an excellent Alaska Primer on ADVrider. Well worth reading when planning your trip...

    And to the OP, use paragraphs. Your RR was very difficult to read.
    1983 R100RT hacked w/Cozy Rocket My blog
    2012 Ural Patrol
    Airhead #10576

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