Heading out to Vancouver Island in a few hours thanks to having great dog sitters. Lately I have been trying to get away for short trips on my bike. I ride all year but this time of year I particularly love because of the cool crisp mornings and if lucky warm afternoons.
Day 3 – X Winds, Hail & GHOST Rider (711.4 KM’s)
It’s funny no one has asked how my ass is doing on the BMW OEM low seat? Well, it’s working out just fine actually. The sheep pad helps but I bet I could be doing this without it. For some reason I have grown accustomed to it.
In 2010 I rode the Going to the Sun Road through Glacier National park. It took us over 4 hours to ride the 48-50 mile road. The traffic and construction in early July 2010 was insane. Well worth it. Was a nice day but 4 hours???
Today it was closed and closed until late June.
Today started out sunny and no wind until I got through the mountains. Again in 2010 I remember what it was like to ride through Montana and Wyoming. HOLY cross winds. But for the beginning of today I saw this…
It drizzled a bit but I have to be honest it was nothing compared to later in the day. The KLIM Altitude suit being Gore Tex is handling all this rain no problem. The only issue I have is the light colour. It’s showing up everything and something weird is happening to the leather on the pants. I took some pics but perhaps I will take better ones at another time. But here are the ones from today.
both pants legs have these marks or stains? Dunno. I will see what happens when I wash them eventually. Other than the dirt and I have always had an issue with the collar. hey need to make it about 2 cm wider for heated liners. I can not zip up the jacket with my liner in to make it really water tight.
My bike turned 15,000 today. I think yesterday it was 14,000?
it was still really nice out after I got through the park. Had to take this photo op shot with a back ground like that? It’s really beautiful here, even the plains did not bore me this time. In 2010 they seem to be annoying a bit, but this time around being with me?
I like the rolling hills and the surprise curve in the road. Soothing I guess as I listened to Ghost Rider.
Not sure if anyone out there who rides long distances have ever thought about audio books. If you haven’t highly recommend getting some on your phone, use the Audible App and you are good to go.
My SPOT has died by this point. I called SPOT and they said it must be defective using so many batteries. Doesn’t really matter I know it’s defective because now it won’t boot on. It DEAD.
I am going to go to Cabelas here in Billings tomorrow and see about getting a Gen 3 Spot. The next time I can set it up online and call SPOT to activate the new device when I get one, tracking will be back on. I like to have it for me and my family.
The Spring time weather out here is definitely not boring. One minute you have sun and warmth, the next it drops 10 degrees C and it’s thundering out, lightning and hailing with down pours.
Doesn’t look that bad but when I turned a bend in the road I hit a black wall of hail. About 2 hours outside Billings, MT.
I love cargo trains when riding. We have them back in Vancouver but while riding out in the middle of no where…these things are so cool.
So, I have to admit…riding solo can be scary at times. If you are reading this post to this point I will confess it is taking a little more time getting used to being on my own. Like parking. I have almost dumped the bike more times than I care to admit because I never judge parking surfaces well. Cheryl did. I find myself at times looking in the rear view mirrors only to see no one is back there. Scary to me since I always had a back.
I respect solo riders a whole lot more now. We are on our own for sure. But on the other hand I am liking my own pace and not even really having anyone to talk to but strangers.
I have to give kudos to Shoei helmets. I love this new RF1200 but I have always LOVED how easy it is to take the shield off these helmets to get a good cleaning of the mechanisms and the shield itself. Brilliant.
This 2013 Beemer is making a really decent touring bike. I like it!
Navigating for me is new. I never had a GPS on my bike until last year. Maybe that was a foreshadow because something prompted me to get one and learn how to use it. Coming in handy I have to say. I am using a Montana 600.
When I got to a road construction area that says wait until your pilot car arrives, this can mean minutes or hours. I waited an hour. So, listened to my book and watched cows graze. A little annoying because I lost an hour yesterday time wise due to Mountain time and today due to waiting.
Started out sunny and cool while waiting but look what happened.
It was kind of funny. I was loving the gravel and dirt and was cruising right along while the cars and trucks behind me seemed more tentative. it was slippery but I have done the Dempster and Dalton in the piss down rain and this was nothing but maybe 10 KM’s long?
There is where the cross winds almost blew me off my bike a few times. I trust my bike and trust me to relax in such powerful gusts. Felt like a football player leaning into the wind to keep myself low. My body actually aches from today. The wind for me acts like I am a punching bag. Truthfully? I rather ride in crappy rainy weather than HIGH cross winds. it made for a great work out.
The another storm came up. In Montana you can see for miles so you can also see your destiny. I watched the skies and pulled over at a gas station to get my heated gear on. The temperature was about 18 C then dropped to 6. I spoke to an army young man moving to Texas from Fairbanks who said he heard it’s really bad going the direction we were heading. Well? it was…huge hail, wind, thunder, lightning, pouring rain that bounced off the road up my pants leg. Also, it rained so hard that it was bouncing off my bike up my helmet until I put my chin down.
The hail hurt my hands through my gloves and to kicker was the wind challenge as well. This lasted for about an hour. KLIM gear kept me dry as a bone as well as my Gore Tex KLIM gloves.
Gas station where I changed.
Came out of it and again nothing but blue skies but windy.
I did not take pictures in the middle of the storm…I thought that would be just dumb if I did. I needed both hands on the handle bar. Wyoming is having funnel clouds and also bad storms. So, what lies ahead?
I decided to head to Billings, instead of Buffalo, WY due to time. After 711 KM’s and the cross winds I was done. So, stopped in Billings which is sort of good. I am going to go to Cabelas outdoor store tomorrow and see about getting that new Gen 3 SPOT. Maybe I can have tracking back up sooner than later if they have one in stock. They open at 0900 so my start time will be later than I want.
That is Billings down below and the weather was perfect. I got another KOA cabin for the price of a tent site. It pays to show up late and a little off-season.
As the diabetic that I am it’s important I check my sugars at times. Mine seems to be doing OK except yesterday I dropped to 3.6. Hypoglycemic which is not good but today I was better.
I am paying more attention to my diabetes than any other trip. I need to so I can stay alert. I have no one telling me I am acting weirdly.
And finally a nice sunset to end the day. Oh, and some really really ANNOYING loud young man who just went to bed, made for a great day. Which is actually what I had a great day. One thing I hope this distraction of a trip does some healing so when I go back I am not a complete disaster as I was before I left. I need to be able to be functioning again on a more consistent basis. That is my wish for this trip. Safety, enjoyment and finding myself somewhat whole again.
Continue reading “Day 3 – X Winds, Hail & GHOST Rider (711.4 KM’s)”
My SPOT is still using too many batteries and seems to be getting worse. I will call them tomorrow and see about trying to keep the tracking up by buying more batteries here in Kalispell, MT. Still have more riding to do. Leslie
More Prep and Gadgets
I have heard many times that riding today’s bikes are way too technological and we as riders bring too many gadgets. I guess it’s partly true in some sense but I also believe as an ADV rider (all rides are an ADV to the rider BTW), that we can choose how we want to travel at all times.
I mean isn’t that the beauty of taking a trip in any shape of form as you will and make it what you want? Some like single cylinder engines with no techno gadgets, to get away from the crazy world we live in….solitude. I can find solitude even riding with others on my bike. To me there is no real argument to judge or be judge how one defines an adventure. I say do whatever you want as long as you come back in one piece.
On this trip being SOLO, I am more confident that using my SPOT Connect is a great way for my family/friends and the public to keep an eye on me. I will have tracking set up and with this little device I can send a LIVE text message at the end of the day to say where I am and all is OK up to ten emails.
Check out our travel page and track us live on our SPOT!
Dawson Creek, BC and Back in 5 days
Once again we will have our SPOT on for tracking purposes and to allow family and friends to keep an eye on us while we travel. Anyone can follow us if you choose. Click the link below and every 10 mins the GPS track will be updated while we are moving. Going LIVE later this morning. Continue reading “Dawson Creek, BC and Back in 5 days”
Remember to check the SPOT
You can see our tracks since we have been away…..live when we are riding or just in general. To the left you can check back all the days or whatever time frame you like. You can also change the type of map. Heading towards the west coast tomorrow. KLIM Summit has been great too bad for the rain today. Klim however, has back up plans for we tenters to have dinner under a roof. The KLIM staff have all been great too! Thanks Rose!