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Thread: Back from Tuktoyaktuk!

  1. #1
    Registered User GTRider's Avatar
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    Back from Tuktoyaktuk!

    Last Thursday afternoon I returned from my month-long post-retirement ride to Tuktoyaktuk and points beyond (Fairbanks, Valdez, Hyder, Bella Coola, Revelstoke/Nakusp, etc). My ride of choice was a 1993 R100GS, chosen simply because it's a reliable machine that is easy to work on and because it was part of the question on my mind--can a 60-something rider on a 25yr-old motorcycle make it to Tuk and back? And, one of the objectives of the trip was to visit places at the end of the road--a location that always fascinates me. I rode up through Banff and Jasper, turned off the Alcan at Watson Lake to ride the Campbell Highway up to the Dempster, then on to Inuvik and Tuk. Turns out I was the 6th motorcyclist to ride the new road to Tuk--not a distinction I set out to achieve, but just a result of trying to time my trip between the end of the bad spring weather and full-blown insect season. Was able to ride the Top of the World Highway, the Denali Highway from Cantwell to Paxson, the Stewart-Cassiar Highway, and more. Numerous adventures along the way, including a layover in Kalispell, MT on the second day of the ride to have laser surgery on a retinal tear that occurred just north of Kalispell. I should probably write something up and file it away, I guess.

    Anyway, here's a couple of pics from the ride. And yes, I am a lousy photographer.

    The Campbell Highway: Generally good road surface but vegetation comes right up to the roadway. Mind the critters!:IMG_0044.jpg


    The Tombstone Mountains on the Dempster make an absolutely beautiful ride!:IMG_0016.jpg


    The mighty GS arrives at Tuk:IMG_0058.jpg


    And is the #6 motorcycle to do so! Mike, who designed and made possible the Tuk stickers that will be sold at Tuk to help the community, was there to take my pic and post it on ADVRider: http://advrider.com/index.php?thread...#post-35166460


    The marker in Tuk for the end of the TransCanada Highway:IMG_0060.jpg


    And the GS getting ready to turn for the next stops, Fairbanks and Deadhorse. Wanted to dip my toe in the Beaufort Sea, but it was still frozen!:IMG_0061.jpg


    I didn't make it to Deadhorse, denied by a major snowstorm that hit from the Brooks Range almost down to Coldfoot so didn't make the run. Substituted Bella Coola instead. The link to my Spotwalla track is here: https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php...=0&showAll=yes

    But I'm not done with Canada and the great Northwest--there are still places at the end of the road to visit!

    Best,

    DeVern
    DGerber
    1983 R80ST — 1984 R80 G/S PD — 1993 R100GS — 2004 K1200GT w/Hannigan S/C — 2010 K1300GT
    BMWMOA#52184, AMA#271542, IBA#138

  2. #2
    sMiling Voni's Avatar
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    Fantastic!!!

    What an amazing adventure!

    More, please . . .

    Voni
    sMiling
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  3. #3
    Registered User RIDERR1150GSADV's Avatar
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    Awesome adventure!

    PS: Was Ross River out of gas again???
    MOA # 108516
    Current ride 2018 R1200 GSA Triple Black
    Past rides '04 R1150RT, '05 K1200LT, '06 R1150GSA, ‘17 R1200RT

  4. #4
    IBA# 5819 61996's Avatar
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    Nice ride...congrats!
    Mine is next year.

    Joe
    “Fate whispers to the warrior, 'You can not withstand the storm.'
    The warrior whispers back, 'I am the storm.'

  5. #5
    Registered User powwow's Avatar
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    Congrats on an awesome adventure...thanks for sharing with us!
    Larry Gregerson; Bend, OR
    MOA #93031

  6. #6
    Way to go DeVern!!! I am proud of you!
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
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  7. #7
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    Congratulations on your accomplishment! Sounds like you did good job servicing your GS for the trip. I read your email on the airheads list. What a great bike! I have a 92 RT and an 09 GSA and have been thinking of looking for a older GS. I like the keep it simple approach. Thank you posting your adventure!

  8. #8
    RK Ryder
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    I am envious!

    Congratulations on your ride.
    Paul
    Retired and riding my RTs, the '87 K100 & the '98 R1100 !
    Niagara Riders & Knights of the Roundel #333

  9. #9
    Registered User GTRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RIDERR1150GSADV View Post
    Awesome adventure!

    PS: Was Ross River out of gas again???

    No, they had gas—but I had to dip into my emergency can about 6km from Ross River. I did discover that on Sunday you can’t buy gas before noon in Fort McPherson, and that if you want to buy gas in Tsiigehtchic you had to get on the ferry, go a short distance upstream, then depart the ferry and wait for the next trip to take you across the Mackenzie, and hope they’d remember to stop if there were no locals needing to get in or out of town. I didn’t want to hang out in Fort McPherson waiting for either of the two stations to open, and at Tsiigehtchic we motorcyclists were at the front of the ferry—which BACKED into the dock at Tsiigehtchic so we couldn’t have gotten off anyway. So, I sputtered to a halt halfway through the bypass around Inuvik on my way to Bob’s Welding (and gas station) near the start of the road to Tuk. Dropped in a liter from the emergency fuel supply and motored to the station. As expected, fuel mileage seemed to vary a lot depending upon the grade of fuel available and road/weather conditions. You just don’t want to ride past a chance to buy fuel in the Yukon or NWT, but I didn’t have much choice in the cases I mentioned above.

    Best,
    DG
    Last edited by GTRider; 06-28-2018 at 01:18 AM. Reason: Spelling
    DGerber
    1983 R80ST — 1984 R80 G/S PD — 1993 R100GS — 2004 K1200GT w/Hannigan S/C — 2010 K1300GT
    BMWMOA#52184, AMA#271542, IBA#138

  10. #10
    Registered User RIDERR1150GSADV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GTRider View Post

    No, they had gas—but I had to dip into my emergency can about 6km from Ross River. I did discover that on Sunday you can’t buy gas before noon in Fort McPherson, and that if you want to buy gas in Tsiigehtchic you had to get on the ferry, go a short distance upstream, then depart the ferry and wait for the next trip to take you across the Mackenzie, and hope they’d remember to stop if there were no locals needing to get in or out of town. I didn’t want to hang out in Fort McPherson waiting for either of the two stations to open, and at Tsiigehtchic we motorcyclists were at the front of the ferry—which BACKED into the dock at Tsiigehtchic so we couldn’t have gotten off anyway. So, I sputtered to a halt halfway through the bypass around Inuvik on my way to Bob’s Welding (and gas station) near the start of the road to Tuk. Dropped in a liter from the emergency fuel supply and motored to the station. As expected, fuel mileage seemed to vary a lot depending upon the grade of fuel available and road/weather conditions. You just don’t want to ride past a chance to buy fuel in the Yukon or NWT, but I didn’t have much choice in the cases I mentioned above.

    Best,
    DG
    Sounds like you had a great trip up there!!!

    This is why I was so happy with the fuel capacity of my GSA (7.8 Gal) and still I had to use my spare fuel as well to get to Faro from Ross River when they were out. From what I have read on other RR's, Faro seems to be out quite often... I did see the fuel truck driving to Ross River the next day as I camped near Faro.
    I too learned long ago to fuel up whenever you can in remote areas, even if you still have half a tank of gas. You never know when the next opportunity avails itself to get go-go juice...
    MOA # 108516
    Current ride 2018 R1200 GSA Triple Black
    Past rides '04 R1150RT, '05 K1200LT, '06 R1150GSA, ‘17 R1200RT

  11. #11
    rsbeemer 22600's Avatar
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    NIce wirte up GTRider

    Congrats and thanks for sharing. Keep it up.
    1978 R100rs MOA#22600 125cc Kymco , 180cc Kymco Racing King
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.

  12. #12
    skibum69 skibum69's Avatar
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    Good on ya!

    My trip ended in Dawson after 2 days due to my water pump rebuild screwup that was pushing coolant into my motor. Expensive 2 days shipping me and my bike both ways.
    http://beerthief.ca
    ITSteve: ride in peace my friend

  13. #13
    Registered User GTRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skibum69 View Post
    Good on ya!

    My trip ended in Dawson after 2 days due to my water pump rebuild screwup that was pushing coolant into my motor. Expensive 2 days shipping me and my bike both ways.
    Thanks! I was following your progress in Cemil’s thread over on ADVRider and hoping you’d get the issues resolved and be able to continue. Sorry it didn’t work out for you but wishing you success on your next attempt.

    I was very lucky weather-wise on my run from Dawson to Tuk, hitting rain only in the Tombstone Mtns, and even that slowed me for less than an hour. Top of the World and Denali Highway from Cantwell to Paxton made up for it tho, with heavy rain and really sloppy conditions.

    Planning an AK adventure for next year, on the sidecar rig with my wife as passenger. Ferry from Vancouver to Skagway, another ferry to Anchorage, hit Homer before heading to Valdez then taking the Cassiar towards home. All paved roads on this trip, although if I could find a rental GS in Fairbanks I’d make a detour up there and do the Dalton run that I got aced out of by the snowstorm. I’ll have to look into that!

    Best,
    DG
    DGerber
    1983 R80ST — 1984 R80 G/S PD — 1993 R100GS — 2004 K1200GT w/Hannigan S/C — 2010 K1300GT
    BMWMOA#52184, AMA#271542, IBA#138

  14. #14
    skibum69 skibum69's Avatar
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    Sounds like a fun trip. I might be headed to Alask for work next month.

    I probably could have done the fix and cleaned the carb from the bad gas in Tok but I realized there’d been coolant getting in there since February and about 2000 km’s of running so I figured best to get it home before I did any more damage. It’s still sitting in the crate waiting for me to get home to tear it down for inspection to put together a parts list.
    http://beerthief.ca
    ITSteve: ride in peace my friend

  15. #15
    Such a great trip! And completely inspirational! I *just* finished the Top of the World Highway on an '82 R65, but not the Dempster... nope. I wanted to, but didn't want to temp the fates too much more than I already had.

    IMG_20180720_200114_smaller.jpg

    (More words and pics at http://the751.com.)
    2 x 1982 R65; Writing about riding, some pics: http://the751.com

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