Friday, 20 July 2012

Day 7,8,9,10: Badlands, South Dakota to Buffalo, Wyoming

Day 7: Wake up in Badlands to Trouble in Black Hills

Woke at 5am to get a early start to get to Buffalo Wyoming through the Black Hills National Forest. Woke up to a large bison just on the other side of the camp. With a herd not too far off. All packed and ready to go by 6am. I take off and just over a hill is a herd of bison on both sides of the road and on the road (sadly didn't get pictures :( ). As I approached, the bison rushed to one side of the road, scaring the crap out of me. It was definitely an interesting experience.

Bison Woke me up Bison

So back along the 12mile dirt road, to the badlands loop, do the loop once more and exit, head out towards Rapid City, South Dakota. around 10:30am I get to Rapid which is just outside the Black Hills I stop for a bite to eat and a top up on my gas. I go in and pay for the gas and come out and my bike wont start. so I walk it to an empty part of the station and bump start it. I figured my GPS killed my battery. So I continued on through to the Black Hills.


Made a pit stop to take a look at Mount Rushmore to see "the faces" and then went back to HWY 16 alternate which is the main road through the Black Hills also known as "Iron Mountain Road" with 3 Corkscrews, 3 one-way tunnels (which sound amazing!) and endless curves. Only bad thing about this road is there are too many cars that drive dead slow. I do the road once and my GPS says I will make it to Buffalo at 2pm, so I decided to loop back around and do Iron Mountain again.
This time not as many cars, was just having a blast going through and I get to the top then the cars start, just when the switchbacks come. I slowly do the switch backs following cars, get past the last one and my bike has no power just making noise. I pull over and the bike dies and won't start again. I was on a down grade so I rode the hill and tried to bump it again. Full throttle and all it's doing is making a low groan as soon as I let the throttle off the bike shuts off. Rode the down grade until I hit a flat point and then it goes up again. I am stranded, a dead bike, hills on both sides of me, and no cell phone signal. This was at 12:30pm. Took my seat off to see if the battery connection was good and no problems there so there's not much I can do. Sat there with my seat off, helmet on the corner of the road hoping someone will stop and offer some help. 200+ cars and bikes go by with no one stopping to even see if everything is ok, what is with people these days? no courtesy anymore? around 1:30pm a guy on an Triumph adventure bike gives me a thumbs up to see if Im good and I show thumbs down, he continues on and about 15min later he comes back. Offers to take me up the hill to get cell signal and then the sheriff drives by and we wave him down. He stops and asks whats going one and I tell him. He gets dispatch to contact 'AAA' to get a tow truck. The tow truck gets here at 3pm, loads the bike and takes me to Black Hills Powersports in Rapid City. The mechanic takes a look at my bike and does a couple tests and figures out it is the Stator and I need a new one. Ok cool, swap the stator and I'll be on my way, but no,  this is a Saturday, they close at 5 and are on Sundays, and don't have a stator in stock. The earliest they can get a stator is to over night ship it on Monday and have it ready by Tuesday.  Guess I am stuck until Tuesday, with no bike.
The clerk Heather gives me a ride to find a hotel to stay for 3 nights. Go to 4 hotels and they are all super expensive, so we go to the Motel 6 and it is the cheapest.

Rushmore First cork screw First of 3 Oneway Tunnels Road thru the Forest in the Blackhills Waiting for Tow Truck Intersection where i broke down

Day 8, 9 &10: Rapid City Stroll

So, for 2 days I walk around Rapid City (which there isn't much to do other than walk around stores). I walked more in those 2 days than I have in about 2 years.
Tuesday morning one of the service guys picks me up at 11am and brings me to BHPS. Finally at 3pm my bike is running and ready to go. I pack it up and take off to Buffalo. I go back through Iron Mountain Road, had a blast and continued on. Got to Snake Campground around 6pm. set up camp and called it a night.
  Where I got my bike fixed All ready to go after 3daysSet up Camp in Snake Campground

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Day 5 & 6: North Dakota to Badlands

Day 5: Last day in Cooperstown

This was a lazy day, visited some family in the afternoon had some cake and coffee. Around 6:30pm we went to a friends farm and went for a horse drawn buggy ride. I was driving for a little bit (holding the reins). Went down some back farm roads, decent farmland scenery.

Horse buggie ride Slew and Sun Driving the Horses

Day 6: Cooperstown to Badlands, South Dakota

Hit the road around 9:30am, it was a rainy morning before I left. Put my rain suit on just incase it rained some more which it didn't, instead it got hot and sunny. Destination for today was the Badlands. Crossed over another Time zone on the way there. I arrived in the badlands around 5:30 Central time but it was actually 4:30 Mountain Time so i had some extra time to explore.
I did the Badlands Loop, which was an amazing ride, nice and curvy and not too much traffic. About the middle of the loop I saw a sign that said Campground this way 12 miles and it was pointing down a Dirt road. So I turned down this dirt road to find the Campsite. about 30min later  on a nice winding dirt road, i find the camp site and it is first come first serve with no extra fee. SWEET FREE CAMPING! so i picked a spot set up then took a little hike to take some photos. Went to bed fairly early after eating cookies for dinner.

BADLANDS Entering the Badlands Badlands Road Badlands Set up camp in the badlands Campground Section of the 12mile dirt road

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Day 2, 3 & 4: Sault Ste Marie to Thunder Bay to North Dakota

Day 2: Sault Ste Marie to Thunder Bay
Set out at 7:30am on Monday  morning to head to Thunder Bay. It was  a good day, about 9 hours riding 699km.
Stopped at a couple look out points and provintial parks.
Dirt Road to Cresent lake Cresent Lake Cresent Lake Wawa Goose Wawa welcom Building Nice curve in the road from old woman bay Old Woman Bay
Arrived in Thunder Bay about 5:30pm. at my first Couch Surfing Host's place. Richard, had a pot of chili ready for me when I arrived and made Bacon and eggs for me in the morning. We chatted a little and took his dog Oliver for a walk around the block. One of Richards favorite places is Glacier National Park in Montana which is one of the places I will be visiting throught my trip.

Richard and Oliver

Day 3: Thunder Bay to Cooperstown, North Dakota
Set out at 9am (Eastern Time) Daily total - 874km.
Crossed the border to USA at Pigeon Road Border Crossing around 9am (Central Time). Got pulled into secondary, they just asked me a few questions and checked out my bike and sent me on my way, no unpacking or and searching so was a pretty smooth sailing cross over.
I stopped at Two Harbors and took some pictures of the light house, I wanted to take my bike all the way out on to the boardwalk by the light house but didn't think it would be a good idea with all the people around.
Was a very long day with 12.5 hrs on the road reaching my cousin's house in Cooperstown, ND around 8:30 (Central Time). Their dogs Rip and Spook greated me like they never forgot me from when I was there back in '09.

Two Harbors Light house at two harbors Tunnell
Spook and Rip
Day 4: First day in North Dakota with Family

Slept in untill about 9:30am had a dish for breakfast called Egg Bake that was very tasty.
My cousin Nick came by in his Polaris Ranger RZR (Razer). We took a cruise around in the Razer and visited some family around town. My other Cousin came on a borrowed Harley to say hello. Then we went to the local Country Club Golf Course in Cooper for some Steaks and Chops with the fam.
Then Nick and I went to Hanaford (a local town) for some Fourth of July fireworks, bon fire and beer (water
Nicks Rzr Road Glide Classic Grillin Steaks and Chops July 4th Fire and Flag on July 4th

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Day 1: Milton - Sault Ste Marie

Today was a good day. Left home at 11am a little later than planned but thats understandable when up partying until 4am.. :P

Weather was beautifull other than a 30second downpour just south of Sudbury.
Stopped for a quick break at the Blind River welcome center (was closed) and had a meal bar because i was starving. I noticed the blind river sign and rode my bike up to the side of it and snapped a pic.

While riding I had my camera around  my neck and took a few shots while riding some turned out well.

I reached the Sault at about 7:30pm. Got a motel room and went to swiss chalet for dinner. Ordered a double leg dinner and they gave me 3 legs because the chicken was small (looked decent size to me) so i have breakfast for tomorrow.

Tomorrow I head off to Thunder Bay where I have my first couch surfing host.

untill tomorrow,

On the road! Break time in Blind River Done for the night

All Ready to Go ... Fairwell

I'm ready, very nervous and excited!

You all can follow my adventure here with pictures and track my location @

I hope you all enjoy my adventure as much as I will.

Can you fit this much on your sport bike? lol Packed up
Ok, so time is for me to start my journey and for you to follow along with me. I have every thing packed up.

Top Bag
5 pairs performance shirts (Nike and Under Armor)
6 pair performance underwear (3 short 3 long)
1 Pair Jeans
1 Pair Shorts
5 Pair of Socks
3 pair of underwear
1 pair track pants
1 swim suit

Bottom Bag
Sleeping Bag
Blow up pillow

Saddle Bags
Tool Kit/First Aid Kit
Chain lube and clean
Isagenix Shakes and Bars
Flip flops, Shoes
Bug Spray
Water Bottles

Tank Bag
Canon Powershot SX40HS
Camera Accessories 
Acer A200 Tablet
Power cords
Hard drive

I may be forgetting some things that are there but that's the most of it. I will post pictures tomorrow when i get wifi. It's 430 am and I'm going to try and get some sleep. I will be taking off around 9:30-10 am heading to my first night in Sault Ste Marie. 

Until then. Good night


Monday, 25 June 2012

Milton to Vancouver Intro

I have been planning a trip across the United States and Canada with a destination of Vancouver, British Columbia. I purchased a 2002 R6 in October 2011 as my first bike and will be Riding it across the country.

Many people say I am crazy to do such a trip on a super sport but I have confidence in my self and my machine to endure this trek across the country.

Upgrades done to my R6 to make my trip(s) more comfortable and safe are as follows:
  • -          Custom Gelled Seat from Americana Soft Seats
  • -          Oxford Heated Grips
  • -          Raised Tinted Wind Screen
  • -          Tail light with integrated signals
  • -          Stomp Grips.

The Gear I have:
  • -          Oxford 30x Magnetic Tank Bag
  • -          REV’IT!  Ignition Jacket
  • -          REV’IT! Sport gauntlet gloves.
  • -          REV’IT! Gear2 Pants
  • -          A* Web Gore-Tex Boots
  • -          A* shorty gloves (for the hotter days)
  • -          Tour Master Sentinal
  • -          Oxford Saddle Bags

Estimated Clothes:
  • -          5 t-shirts (Under Armor & Nike Pro)
  • -          1 Golf  Shirt
  • -          1 hoodie
  • -          5 pairs of athletic socks and underwear
  • -          1 pairs of jeans
  • -          1 pairs of shorts
  • -          1 Swim Shorts

  • -          Canon PowerShot SX40 HC + Charger
  • -          GoPro HERO + Cord
  • -          Tablet + Charger
  • -          GPS + Charger
  • -          Blackberry + Charger
  • -          iPod + Charger(USB cord)
  • -          Spot GPS TRACKER

  • -         Basic set of tools, wrenches, screwdrivers etc
  • -        Vice Grips
  • -        Wheel patch kit
  • -        Duct Tape

  • -          Toothpaste & tooth brush
  • -          Electric Razor
  • -          Body soap and Shampoo
  • -          Mouthwash
  • -          Water
  • -          Snacks – cookies, fiber bars, Isagenix Shakes
  • -          Sunscreen & Bug Spray
  • -          Oil, Chain Lube & Clean
  • -          Paper Towels

  • -          Sunglasses
  • -          Pair of running shoes
  • -          Filp Flops
  • -          Paper maps and compass.
  • -          Scarf/balaclava
  • -          1 person tent
  • -          Sleeping bag
  • -          Basic First Aid kit
  • -          Ear Plugs … Headphones…
  • -          Flash Light
  • -          Batteries (for SPOT and Flashlight)
  • -          Knife
  • -          5L Jerry Can
      The plan is, leave Toronto (Milton to be exact) on July 1st, ride northern Ontario to Thunder Bay, then head south from there into North Dakota spend a couple days there with family in Cooperstown. From there head to the Badlands in South Dakota (maybe camp out somewhere there) and then to Mt Rushmore area, through to Yellow Stone National Park in Wyoming, through Montana, Washington, and then up into Vancouver BC, where I will stay for 2 weeks with family in Delta, where I will visit many of the sights to see in the Great British Columbia with the guide of family and local riders. Once done there, I will head to Calgary, Alberta, to visit a friend for a day or 2 then slab it along the Trans-Canada Highway take the Tobermory Ferry across Georgian Bay and home from there.

Milton – Vancouver:
July 1st: Milton – Sault Ste. Marie
July 2nd: Sault Ste. Marie – Thunder Bay
July 3rd: Thunder Bay – Cooperstown
July 4th & 5th: Rest in Cooperstown with Family
July 6th: Cooperstown – Badlands.
July 7th: Tour the Badlands and Black hills/Rushmore area to Buffalo, Wyoming
July 8th: Buffalo, Wyoming - Yellow Stone National Park
July 9th: Yellow Stone – Browning, MT (Glacier National Park)
July 10th: Browning, Spokane WT
July 11th: Spokane – Seattle – Vancouver, BC.
Stay in Vancouver July 11th – July 24th

Vancouver - Milton
July 25th: Vancouver – Kamloops, BC
July 26th: Kamloops – Calgary, AB
July 27th & 28th: In Calgary
July 29th: Calgary – Regina, SK
July 30th: Regina – Winnipeg, MB
July 31st: Winnipeg – Thunder Bay, ON
Aug 1st: Thunder Bay – Sault Ste. Marie
*Home Stretch*
August  2nd: Sault Ste. Marie – Tobermory Ferry (nap) – HOME!

Oxford Heated Grips Set up for my Weekend Test Trip before Vancouver :D Set up for my Weekend Test Trip before Vancouver :D