07 July, 2012

Day 2, 626km: The real start

Hello everyone,

It's a chilly morning here in Glacier National Park. Woke up in my tent to a freezing 7.5 degrees C.

Can you feel the cold?
So how did I get there?
The day started by a quick stop at Pacific Motorsports to pickup my riding pants. There I met Lesley (http://advgrrls.com/) and she gave me cool tips about driving north to Yukon as she just came back from Alaska. Thanks Lesley! She was also very surprised at how light I pack for a 5 months trip. This probably means I've forgotten something :)

Does this look light to you?
Well it isn't light I can tell you! So today I headed to the Highway #1 "Trans Canada Highway". Once I was on it, the GPS told me "straight ahead for the next 598km". I guess the good thing was I wouldn't get lost.

Sandwich = happiness
So that was a long way, riding up the mountains. Met a few people along the way, and I can say that Harley Davidson riders are friendly, so far I haven't been beaten up to death (I guess, since I'm typing this). Most people are curious and surprised when I tell them I'm headed to Argentina. I guess they were doubly surprised since I was heading northeast.

1000km! In the middle of the highway so I made a quick stop for the photo. Somewhere after  Kamloops.
You have to drive a new bike slowly for the first 1000km or so. I did it in two days ... I guess she had a good training of what's ahead! The road was nice, the landscape so ... BIG ! The mountains in the distance were probably always 40km away or so. It's impressive. Another impressive thing was the weather. You can see the picture above, 31.5 degrees C but it cold a bit colder later on as we shall see.

Loved the font of the shop's name
 600km is a long way and with the heat, the first thing I did when stopping was removing the boots, opening the jacket and drinking lots and lots of water. There wasn't much in Pritchard. The shopkeeper was Korean, god knows how she ended up here. So many asians in this region! I guess that's a smooth transition coming from Thailand.

So that's the beach? Ok I'll pass
I stopped next in Sicamous, because I thought the name was fun, plus there were signs for a beach. Everyone knows how much I love swimming so I thought I shouldn't miss this opportunity. Well badluck! The beach was flooded! (Never thought I'd type that).

Last 200km before Glacier National Park, objective: find a campsite
The last 200km of the way were just like the picture above. Nice mountain roads with lots and lots of trees. The weather was perfect. I finally arrived at my destination and found a camping called "Canyon Hotsprings" it was 8pm, I was tired so decided that would be it for today. 

Next I setup my tent (first time, pain in the ass), unpacked all my stuff, had a quick dinner and fell asleep around 9pm. Long day! Now one more thing is that we cannot really say I'm a seasoned camper. I guess I have something like 10 nights of camping in all my life. So last night I didn't realize the weather would be so cold. 
I woke up in the middle of the night, the only thoughts in my head being "FROID FROID FROID COLD COLD COLD", put on a few more layers, zipped the sleeping bad tighter and went back to sleep.
Few hours later, the sun was in. 5.30am. "FROID FROID FROID COLD COLD COLD". The thermometer on the bike was saying 7.5 degrees C as you saw. I was so cold I ran to the showers to warm up. That was the best $3 for 6 minutes hot shower I've ever taken.

Looks cool? No! It's freezing.
Maxime, I can hear you laughing all the way to Canada. The night wasn't that bad apart from the cold. I took a look at the sleeping bag while packing it and it said "Comfort 15 degrees C and above". Now wonder I got cold. So there I am now finishing my breakfast, the bike is packed again and I'm going to Calgary today, for the 1000km service of the bike at the BMW dealership there. I'll try to find a motel there to have a good night to make up for the last one ;)

See you everyone!

1 comment:

  1. We know the feeling of being cold...what we did was wear our socks over our hands, used our toques, slept in our under gear, wrapped our heat liners, minus the benefits of the heat around out feet. But the big difference is that when we got home from Alaska we bought better sleeping bags and tent for our next trip. Funny, we will most likely be camping in heat this summer.

    Love your writing style and congrats you hit 1000KM! Again stay safe, enjoy the wild life you will eventually see and we will for sure be checking in. Leslie as in advgrrls