4 Stated, 2 Provences 30 hours

I did this ride in October 2017 and earned a BunBurner Silver. It was a ride I wanted to do anyway. Canada was beautiful, but cold.

I left Beaverton with excitement and a full tank. I hadn’t been to Canada since the 2014 Klondike Road Race. But that is a different epic tale.

When I arrived for my first scheduled fuel stop I was a little nervous. I should be able to travel around 240 miles per tank and at 210 miles the light had been on for 50 miles. I put 6.1 gallons in a 6.5 gallon tank and prayed for better fuel economy.

The boarder crossing was uneventful with the exception of the warning the official gave me about snow. I would be in Montana before the snow, I thought to myself.

I ate lunch at an A&W. It was much different than what I remember of US A&W’s. It was the only meal I stopped for. I had some snacks, but that was the only meal I ate in over 30 hours.

I was supposed to stop for fuel in Lethbridge but somehow missed the gas station. I think I took a bypass instead of going through town. It was dark, I’m not sure. So here I am, miles away from a fuel stop inching my way back to the boarder. 47 miles past my scheduled fuel stop I see a sign for “Services”. I am so thankful fuel is listed. I take the exit and ride about 1/4 mile before I realized I was in a residential area. It’s dark, so I stop to see what my phone has to say about the station. Passed it? I didn’t see anything. I follow my phone to the location. The one pump station closed at 5 pm. How can you close at 5 pm and claim services. I get back on the highway at 9:40 not knowing what was next. My wife called because in an attempt to place my phone on its holder in the dark I hit the S.O.S. So she tells me 13 miles away is a gas station that closes at 10. Better hurry. Not much fuel. Not a good combination.

Now it could make a great story being out if fuel late at night in unfamiliar, sparsely populated Canada, but I don’t have that story. The story I have is I made it just in time and they even let me use their restroom. Great stop in Milk River. Sorry, I didn’t see the river.

The boarder crossing back to the U.S. was smooth. Not much I can hide on a motorcycle, I guess. I made it through without any snow, but 26 degrees was plenty cold.

Now heading towards Glacier National Park I have been riding in below freezing temps for a few hours. The heated seat and handle bars are not working. I later learn that I forgot to reconnect the heated seat when I added my heated jacket connection. Honda made the two related so neither work. I have heat from my jacket and from the heater vents. Oh yes, these Gold Wings have heater vents.

In Kalispell I get fuel and determined my ability to continue. There are hotels in Kalispell and I won’t see one for a while. While fueling, warming, and assessing a couple of people walk by. I’m wondering about them because it looks like the town rolled up it’s sidewalks hours ago. It’s about midnight. They walk by, probably as curious about me as I was of them. I determine I’m good to go and off I went into the night.

People ask if I rode non-stop. Well, other than the meal in Cranbrook, BC, I stopped for a nap. It was only a 1.5 hr stop and I slept on gravel in full gear. I even had my helmet on. I was south of Kalispell and it was below freezing. I left my heated gear on durring the nap.

This was a very restful nap. Laying next to my bike at 2 am under a starry sky would make for a nice story, but I fell asleep quickly and awoke with a start. I then knew I needed to get up and press on.

Riding between Kalispell and I-90 at 3 am was very peaceful. Hardly any cars and no precipitation, which is good because it’s 25 degrees. That’s Ferinhiet I wasn’t in Canada that long.

I should back up. Since I was working on an Iron Butt Association ride I had to have documentation. At the start and end I needed a witness. All along the way I have to keep fuel receipts and record any stops. The beginning witness was easy. The gas attendant, I’m in Oregon, we have people pump fuel, was happy to sign the form and was interested in what I was doing. The end was a different story.

I ended my ride at a different Beaverton 76 than the one I started. My ending station I have gone out of my way to avoid. Before pumping fuel I asked if he could be a witness. He agreed and I got fuel. When time came to sign, he refused and so did the guy inside. They said these days no one will sign anything. Well. This left me in a bind.

Who could I get to sign this paper so I could go home? There is a Beaverton police station nearby. I have read the police will sign such a thing. They Did, but it took a rather long time to get anyone to help me.

I took my time getting my paperwork turned in but it was accepted without question.

As I complete this writeup I am on another adventure. I am just waking up in Maud county, Texas, with lots more to write.

Enjoy the adventure!

Drive-Through on a Motorcycle

Motorcycles are a lot of fun for a lot of reasons. I’ve seen some videos of motorcyclist going through drive-throughs and wondered if I would have a similar fun experience.

I think it was similar to what I have seen in other videos. I pull up and the girl taking the order says she doesn’t get motorcycles very often and states that she has seen two come through. She also mentioned my camera, that is what she is pointing at.


 The guy at the window, pictured top, told me not to eat and drive and everyone inside started laughing . They are a happy bunch at Chick-Fil-A.


I have a great tank bag and was able to place the order quickly inside. This bag is like a home to me. Even when I travel without my bike I take it with me, but that’s for another post.

Here is a video of the whole thing, see what you think.

Team Oregon

I spent this weekend with 14 strangers, and we may have only one thing in common, motorcycles!

I would like to become a Team Oregon instructor and have applied for that very thing. These strangers were a motorcycle safety class and I was auditing.

Team Oregon isĀ Oregon’s motorcycle rider training and education provider.

In this class were many people who had never been on a motorcycle before. It was exciting to to watch as the course transformed these people into riders.

The Basic Rider Training begins very basic. They learn where the controls are, how to start, and how to use the friction zone. They also work on safe cornering and maneuvering. One of the finial tests was an offset cone weave, very nice.

After the test is complete, a intersection is set up with a one-way circle around it. It was, as one instructor put it, “Controlled chaos.” Here is a picture.


If you are in Oregon and want to earn your motorcycle endorsement, want to develop your skills, or just understand motorcyclist better, sign up for a class with Team Oregon.

A Little History and a Storm

Not long ago, I was a runner. I have two marathons, two Hood-to-Coasts, one Klondike Road Relay, some half-marathons, and a quite a few other races under my belt. That, however, was another life. Currently I have no idea if I will ever be able to return to running. Last weekend I spent a little time working in the yard and it took a few hours before I could get my thyroid to settle down. That was not confidence inspiring.

So what is this picture of Tophill? Tophill is a trailhead on the Banks-Vernonia Linear Trail. It is a 21 mile trail that, who would have guessed, goes from Banks to Vernonia. It is a rails to trails park. I have spent many hours running this trail, but it was many years ago. My favorite long distance, think 10 or 20 miles, runs were on this trail. Over the years they have paved it. I have also spent a little time riding a bicycle on this trail and I have dodged horse manure too. Let’s just say I have fond memories.

I have gone for a couple of different rides where I end up on Highway 47 south of Vernonia at this trailhead, it has a pit toilet which can be helpful at times. I take a break here and remember a previous life. Here is a video, a snapshot of that area.

Laughter Added to Motorcycle Therapy

Friday, 2/10/17, I went for a ride. We have had a lot of rain here in the Pacific Northwest. One road I enjoy takes me by Fernhill Wetlands. The picture above shows what I encountered. My road was closed. I had to go around.

One show I have recently enjoyed watching is Long Way Round. It is about two guy riding around the world. They encounter some extremely bad roads and have some river forging to do. Well, this may be as close as I ever come to doing something like the Road of Bones.

I did not realize the mic in my camera could pick up anything I said. Come to find out, if I’m loud enough, it can. I start laughing just watching the below video.

Fighting cancer can be tough, and I take every opportunity to do something for the pure enjoyment of it. This is why I enjoy riding my motorcycle so much. I have no requirement to ride, not like the pills and other therapies I’m doing, I do it because I want to. I ride because it causes smiles and helps me deal with all the other stuff I do in order to live. So to paraphrase a famous quote, I fight cancer to add years to my life and ride to add life to my years.

Be safe out there, this life is a dangerous ride.

Motorcycle Heated Jacket

In the Pacific Northwest we have some great roads for motorcycling. We have stunning views with lots of twisties. We also have cool temperatures and rain. The rain is easy to handle, I’ve lived here for about 18 years and purchased rain resistant protective gear. To combat the cold I recently picked up a heated jacket. Below is a video where I talk a little about the jacket and I preview a ride on Wynoochee Valley Road which connects Montesano, WA with Wynoochee lake in the Olympic National Forest. I’ll have another post and video to discuss this road further.