Tag Archives: travelling

Two month on the road already – the miracle of the nature, first fire and wonderful accommodating people everywhere

In these first two month of our journey from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego we do have seen so many impressive places and met plenty of interesting and helpful people… Sometimes it is hard to capture all these moments and impressions as we are moving on nearly every day, meeting new people and seeing new places. Finally we are back at the ocean which we have seen the last time in Anchorage. It was a particular moment to smell, feel and see the open endless blue water again. We skipped driving through the Death Valley as it is just the wrong season with around 50°+C; and you always need a reason to come back to a place ;) Therefore we changed our route and just drove a part of the famous Coastal Highway No 1 in California which just opened again after being closed for 1 ½ year cause an landslide.

Visiting all the national parks became more and more a gamble as the holiday season started and most of the campsites are booked out many months in advance. And of course you are not allowed to camp wild (boondocking how it is called here) inside of any park. On the way to the ocean we had a little detour back to the north visiting Sequoia NP and Kings Canyon NP. Giant sequoia trees are the world’s largest single trees and they are really impressive. Kings Canyon is a rugged glacier-carved valley more than 1600 m deep. It includes multiple 4300 m peaks, high mountain meadows, swift-flowing rivers with waterfalls, and as well some of the world’s largest stands of giant sequoia trees. Luckily we always snatched a camp spot and enjoyed a couple of days with hiking and swimming in the rivers and the waterfall pools.

A little bit further north located western in the Sierra Nevada of California is the Yosemite NP. Everybody is saying it is a must see with its granite cliffs, waterfalls, clear streams, giant sequoia groves, lakes, mountains, meadows and glaciers. But as well it is one of the most visited parks in the US. We doubt that we would find any spot there but we gave it a try. As soon as we left the cooling heights of the Kings Canyon it turned immediately to HOT HOT HOT. South of Yosemite we had a stop at the Visitor Centre of Oakhurst. We were informed that there is a big fire ongoing just at the south-western edge of the park and that many people left the park or cancelled their reservation. The ladies were extremely helpful to find a cool place for us aside a river inside the park. So we went. Arriving at the Wawona camping it was pretty smoky and it was snowing ash. But soon it cleared up a little bit and we were spying at the red-orange sun behind the damp while having a refreshing bath in the river. The rangers told us that they will probably close the glacier point road the following day to establish a fire-fighter-camp. So we woke up at 5am the next morning to drive up there. We were not having the usual breathtaking view into the valley and to the Half Dome but we had a very special spirit… Together with an old local guy we loved this dazed view in the early morning where usually queuing hundreds of people. The ride towards the east end of the pass on the Tioga Pass Road was nice but as well pretty covered in smoke that day and later on we were surprised by a thunder storm with lightening’s all around us, pretty close too… and cached again one of the last camp sites. East of the park the Mono Lake is situated which we visited in the early morning; it is a large shallow saline soda lake which has natural limestone “tufa tower” formations. (We just heard they had to close Yosemite because of the fire – how lucky we have been, even though we had a different view than most of the people)

Escalante to Vegas – Bryce, Zion, Grand Canyon, Route 66 and viva Las Vegas

 

The photo-gallery of the last post were missing and now added – sorry for that ;) Las Vegas we left without gambling or visiting any Casino – probably we saved a lot of money ;) Therefore we had a nice evening together with Brit, Jacob and some friends of them at the old strip of Vegas and we explored the colorful `Valley of Fire´ together with Jacob on the motorbikes on our last day.

Breathtaking, gorgeous, magnificent, striking, amazing… whatever word you use it will not explain how you feel in these sceneries of the National Parks. Following more or less the Colorado River we visited parts of the Escalante NP, went through the Capitol Reef NP, spent a full day at the Bryce NP, drove through Zion and up to the Kolob Reservoir and finally we explored the north and the south rim of the Grand Canyon. We hope we can transfer an idea off all this impressive beauty we saw with the pictures we selected.

On the way to Las Vegas, where we are now, we drove a part of the famous Route 66. The road on its own was pretty boring except the stops where they display all the oddities of the old times; nevertheless a good alternative to the Highway and probably it helped us to escape the thunderstorm. Actually we have been lucky all these days with the weather. Pretty often we could see a black wall, heard the thunder rolling, saw the lightning but except strong winds and a few drops of rain we never were caught by one of these storms. Cross finger it stays like that!

Las Vegas is HOT! And we are lucky that we found a place at Brittany’s and Jacob´s home to stay. Sascha’s AT seems to drink a little bit too much oil and sometimes I can see a dark cloud coming out of the exhaust. As well he has misfires continuously. He just has an eye on it at the garage. For the evening we plan to investigate Las Vegas and its famous Strip. Sascha is keen to gamble a bit – I will think of the budget to release for that ;-)

New companions, first flat tire, amazing people, sceneries and little problems with the Transalp

Time is flying, 3 weeks are gone again… how to summarize? The last time we updated the Blog we stayed with Kelly (from ADV Rider) and his lovely dog Bruno in Prince Georg.  We had not only the chance to blog but as well to do laundry and some little maintenance. We spend a great time cooking and exchanging experiences. Thank you Kelly for your great hospitality and for the nice ride together on the day we left – and a big hug to Bruno!!! There as well we met Erik; original from Switzerland but living more than 20 years+ in Canada – it was fun to meet you again and again on the road. We wish both of you all the best and hopefully we meet again one day.

Our route is following the famous National Parks. We went through Jasper and Banf in Canada. The Glacier National Park we did not really enter as the “road to the sun” was not open yet and nobody could tell us when they will do so. Instead of that we explored the “Hungry Horse Lake” which we really can recommend. On the way to Yellowstone we heard about the “Beartooth Highway” which leads from the North-East into the Park. While heading that direction we were captured by a real thunderstorm with lightening, heavy rain, hail and strong winds (we were even afraid the motorcycles will be blow away). Luckily we were just standing in front of the “White Sulfur Springs Motel” – the people were really nice and the rooms had reasonable prices and included the usage of the hot springs – so we just checked in. Later on another two motorcyclist (one Indian and one 1800cc Kawasaki) arrived after a 1000km ride from Montana and socked by the rain (unfortunately we forgot your names – sorry! Please send us a message it was really nice meeting you guys!!! Save travels!)

3 times lucky in one day!

We are just having a day off at the Bear River Camp in Steward. With WI-Fi, hot showers and a sheltered place. It was time to check the motorcycles, a proper cleaning of ourselves and our clothes – and of course to keep you informed on how and what we are doing ;)

So far we had a great time during our first 3 weeks of the journey. We already have seen many incredible places, met a lot of nice people and camped in beautiful and free places. We love cooking and sitting at the fireplace and enjoy the scenic landscapes while driving. In one place Sascha cought a GIGANTIG pike (he would say 1,5 meter ;))) and I have to say it was the most delicious fish I ever had! The next day we passed a crashed and rolled over truck which was loaded with 40 tons of fresh salmon on ice and we took one out to pimp up our dinner.

Nothing really bad happened so far but we had one really Lucky Day – 3 times luck: On the way down we heard about the Canol Road, a 230 km gravel road winding through 2000 meter high mountains and we decided to do it. The opinions where different when we were asking people if it is open and OK or not… so there was no other way as testing it. We crossed the sign `closed road´ and already after the first meters we met a bear mother with her calve on the road just 50 meters in front of us. She was turning to us and evaluating if we will harm her or not several times. I, Kerstin, was in front and had already the bear spray in my hands and my knees turned into gum and were shivering. I knew we do not have a chance to turn the bikes that quickly on this narrow gravel road if she starts to run – but finally she decided it will be fine and she walked away into the forest.

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The first Lucky time! I think I was doing pretty well on that road, speeding around the turns (this is at least what Sascha said). The ground was pretty compact, not too loose and not too muddy. But suddenly, out of nothing, there was a muddy part which made me tumbling and jumping and I just made it while standing up and opening the throttle. Sascha had the camera running and we had a look at it later – I could not believe I did it!

[Sascha: I couldn’t believe it as well! I already slowed down and was in disaster recovery mode… And then? Unbelievable! She did the only right thing FULL THROTTLE! Whow, what a SAVE that was! Congratulations….]

The second Lucky time! The landscape was beautiful and we were the only one on that road. At one point Sascha was saying: `Strange, I do smell gas!´ and I was replying: `I do not and we are in the middle of nowhere, there is nothing the next 100 km in all directions!´ A few seconds later  I did smell gas as well and somehow my left leg felt wet. I looked down and I could see a little waterfall running down over my leg and boot out of my tank. That was not a funny situation at all. First of all the gas we had been just enough to reach the next upcoming gas station, second the smell of gas attracts bears (actually all kind of smell attracts them as well toothpaste – good to know). Third there is NOBODY around here. [Sascha: Last but not least it was gasoline all over the place and lucky us we did have a cigarette stop just one minute before and the engine AND exhaust was still some kind of cold… if not the bike would just have burned down at this time…) Sascha luckily combined rapid and right, it is the 2nd tank pipe (Benzinhahn) which broke and we closed it as quick as possible with a screw. We looked in the tank and were hoping that we are going to make it. And we did!!! Third time LUCK! [Sascha: What a day that was….]

Below you can find the photos from our travel down from Dawson City to here Steward/Hyder. A highlight for Sascha was the Dredge No 4 and of course the fishing success [Sascha: AND THAT KERSTIN WAS DRIVING LIKE A PRO!!]! Both we were enjoying the freedom, the wilderness and the breathtaking landscapes – especially the Salmon Glacier were we went up yesterday afternoon when we arrived here. [Sascha: Loose, and at times deep gravel… Well done Kerstin!]

See you soon and take care!