Sunday, August 23, 2015

Today is the day - 250 miles of gravel

Had a little trouble sleeping due to excitement and fear.  I noticed that all the motorcycle, very little, was going west to east and very few were on my side doing east to west.  Could find no answer for this.  I got up at 5:30 to eat early and go since I was planning on a 10 hour day.  But I couldn't resist the pic!

It was cool and expected some light rain, just enough to keep the dust down.  I learned alot the day before and 2 guys came in at 10pm last night after 3 flats and multiple repair attempts.  One on a Triumph Tiger and the other on a Honda St with street tires!  They were toast.  I gave them some energy bars and had breakfast with them before leaving.  Two things I learned from Bill Johnson who was sending moral support.  Soften the suspension and relax, no death grip.  I learned how to get the bike up on a plane at around 55 mph but at times I would hit deep gravel that was really scary!  Almost dropped the bike a number of times but kept going.  At one stop the Canadian Jays came down and visited Oswald.

He actually landed on his head but moved when I moved to get the camera!  Very cute.  It was a long, long 250 miles with numerous stops for construction since they are planning on paving this road over the next 5 years.  The bridges in many places are single lane and the road narrows to single lane in places.  The dirt road is a little more than 5 years old so they are still building it. 

At times I got up to 60 mph but for very short periods.  The heavy equipment slowed when they passed me but the smaller pickups blasted me  lots of rock flying and dust.  I got into Goose Bay after about 6 hours on the road and an average speed of 43 mph.  4 hours ahead of schedule.  
I met up with a group from ME just up camping and riding around.  4 on bikes had been reduced to 3 due to Rick's wife totaling her BMW F650 the day before on the TransLab.  She was knocked out and medics were there in a flash.  She got up but the bike didn't.  The RCMP was right there and one of them went home and got his truck driving 100 miles to pick up her bike and take it to Goose Bay.  She was ok with some scrapes and the RCMP said very few walk away from accidents on the TransLab.  Saturday Night the RCMP came over to the motel on his back with a backpack loaded with beer and chips.  What a super guy!  The guy with the white beard in the picture was living there at the motel is a pilot for a water tanker for fighting forest fires.  He flies in low on a lake and scoops up water to dump on the fires.  The guy in the black shirt facing the camera is the RCMP.

We ordered in Pizza and sat up late talking.  What a nice bunch to meetup with, Andy, Nevin, Rick and Sara.  We left after Breakfast the next AM and rode together Churchhill Falls where I planned to stay for the night to rest my back and on to Labrador City tomorrow.  We also met 2 guys from Quebec going the other way.  A great evening.

Sorry to see them go!  Forgot a picture of Sara!

She is already thinking of what bike she wants.
So it is back on the road tomorrow by myself and will be in the States in 4 days heading to Anna and Tony's house.  What a trip, the Canadian people are the best!  But, I do want a steak when I get back, Omega3 overload!
Heading home sort of!

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