North to Alaska

Day 18

 

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”

 

So begins a popular novel – and so begins my story today.

 

You can’t believe the grandeur of this place.  Miles and miles of sheer beauty – that is when you can afford to take your eyes off of the road to look at it.

 

Today was 400 miles of beauty and 10 miles of sheer terror.

 

The beauty almost gets boring – how many pictures of beautiful mountains and lakes and rivers can I post.  It’s just more of the same – but breathtakingly beautiful.

 

The terror is struck by “Construction Ahead.”

 

Terror comes in the form of no pavement – completely new roadbed construction – and the water truck having just drowned the road – turning it into mud.  I must confess, if I would have had a magic wand today, I would have turned my Valkyrie into a BMW R1150GS with knobby tires.  I’m not sure I can describe the intense concentration necessary to keep that motorcycle upright in mud for 10 miles.  I guess I take heart from all the motorcycles that I have passed going southbound – they did it – and apparently so can I.

 

Speaking of the motorcycles – the predominant brand – is, believe it or not, Harley’s.  I confess that is probably the last bike I would have chosen, but they seem to be doing just fine.  Talked to a guy today on a Harley from Pennsylvania – who rode his from Fairbanks to the Arctic Circle and back – 500 miles of dirt road – and he and the bike were doing just fine.

 

Even got passed by two Valkyries today – so I’m not the only one crazy enough to bring a Valk up here – and spoke with a guy and his wife from Alberta – they have to be in their late sixties – this is their second trip to Alaska on a Gold Wing.  This trip is not for the faint of heart – and I admire their heart.

 

And another interesting observation about bikes and bikers – all of the bikers I’ve talked to are white hairs – or no hairs – I’ve not seen one young rider.  Interesting that only old folks like me have the hankering to make this trip.

 

Passed another Continental Divide today – yesterday if I had fallen the a river I would have ended up in the Arctic Ocean – today, the Bering Sea – neither one is a warm prospect.

 

When I moved to Connecticut 1n 1984, everyone was talking about Yukon – and I couldn’t understand the connection – until I learned that they were really talking about UConn – the University of Connecticut.  Well, it didn’t take me long to become a big fan of UConn women’s basketball – the Lady Huskies – and now I find myself in the other Yukon.

 

So to you and Iowa Sioux and Harley & Ana, Goldens, El Dorado City – I say goodnight from Whitehorse, Yukon Terrritory.

 

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 Index, Day, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 thru 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32&33 34