Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Alaska Soujourn 2000

Recommended Posts


Hi All,

A very long story, it is a work in progress, and in parts. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I am enjoying putting my thoughts to paper!

Alaska Sojourn

June-August, 2000

As that famous writer once said, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” I finally had the house to myself. My boys were gone, and I felt that my life was finally going exactly as I had envisioned it would go. I had some money, my health, and what I thought to be a great relationship. One day, without warning reality stepped in and splashed cold water on my face…The girlfriend said goodbye, and I was devastated. Suddenly I was a boat without a keel, tossed on a sea of confusion, and searching for answers in a suddenly very cold world.

My friend Mark had mentioned some time earlier that I was invited to ride with him to Alaska. The plan was to take forty days, ride around the far northwest, and then take the ferry system home to Washington. We’d then ride south, taking our time as we explored the eastern side of the Pacific States. Now, in spite of my gloom, I knew this would be a great idea. I called him up, and said, “I’m in, buddy, when do we go?”

So, Alaska 2000 would be a trip of rebirth and regeneration, or so I hoped. Planning began in earnest. Nervous about riding my shiny fire-engine K12RS, I decided to take my trusty 95 R1100GS on the tour. I figured the GS, with its enormous Jesse aluminum bags would be a much more potent weapon on the muddy graveled ribbons they call highways in Alaska! I poured over books, travel guides, the big Alaska Highway Book, and others. I waded through camping gear catalogs, knowing that I needed a new tent, sleeping bag, and sundry other supplies.

By the time I was finished, the guys at Sport Chalet knew me by my first name….I owned a four person Eureka tent, a synthetic bag from Campmor, a Coleman Peak One stove, and an ultra deluxe thermarest. You know, one of those big, thick cushy ones. The kind you can sink into, drifting into a sleep oblivious of rain, hail, bears, or any other distraction you might encounter on the road.

I was pretty well set. A new tune up for the bike, wax, a tank of gas, and a couple of thousand bucks in Traveler’s checks and I was ready to go. I had done so much reading and preparation, I reasoned that if I didn’t have it piled on the back of my bike, I didn’t need it! I had sleeping gear, cooking gear, eating utensils, fishing stuff, maps, clothes, repair stuff, and just about everything else you could imagine. And, as it turned out, I didn’t need half the stuff I brought, but I am getting ahead of myself now!

The Ride Begins

June 21, 2000

Departure was actually a two day affair. I left at the crack of two p.m. on the 21st to ride to Mark’s place in Bakersfield. Here we would check our loads, do a final once-over of the bikes, eat a good meal together with Mark’s girlfriend, who would join us in two weeks, and finally, get a good night’s rest. We had a wonderful evening, talking and laughing, and sharing motorcycle stories into the night, eager and just a bit nervous about our big adventure, about to begin…

The next morning came too early. I awoke at 5:00 a.m., eager to go. My stomach was in knots, and I nervously donned my gear. I just wanted to get on the road. I was primed and ready for just about anything!

....To Be Continued..........


Share this post

Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Create New...