Thursday, July 17, 2014

Just a Little Bit Hot and Dry

It's getting ugly in the BC forest districts. Hot dry weather + lightning storms = big smoke.

Mount Mcallister fire (CBC news)


We knew it was dry when we rode north along Highway 97 two weeks ago. And this has all developed in the days since:

BC Fire Situation on CBC's website

Tumbler Ridge Fire (CTV news), southwest of Grande Prairie.


BC Fire Situation on CTV's website

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Summer Road Trip

Home from the North Country, from a wedding and a family visit and miles of wonderful riding.

We must be in the North Country - look at the bug splatter.

We decided to spend this trip with more time riding and less visiting, so took the longer route north: from Kamloops to Little Fort, across the pass to 100 Mile House, through Williams Lake and finally to beautiful downtown Kersley (population 20) for the night.

After a 5 minute drive to … and through … Quesnel, we detoured east to visit Barkerville, one of those places we often drive past (well, to be fair, it's a 180 km round trip detour) but never made the time to stop.


Barkerville was a gold mining town in the Cariboo, and a
remarkable place to spend a day immersed in frontier history.

I want to return to Barkerville - there is so much to see and do!


Continuining north, The Husband found us stellar accommodation at Bear Lake (pop. 150), about 70km north of Prince George. What made it so stellar? It's where I got my sore butt off the bike. I had the seat modified a few weeks before, but we'd ridden just under 900 km in two days and I was out of practice. Call me a wimp.

No, really. I don't care.

And then … and THEN … I learned just how far I can travel with the 'E' light flashing on my fuel gauge as we cruised into Chetwynd at noon the next day. If I keep my speed at 90 kmh, the road is mostly downhill and there's no headwind, I can travel 55 km with that slightly-alarming signal taunting me, and then put 16 litres of fuel into a 16 litre tank.

Good information to know, but learned at the price of supreme annoyance.

No matter. Spent a night in Dawson Creek. Then east through Spirit River to Wanham, south to Bezanson and east to Valleyview.

1460 km.

Easy-peasy.


Building up for the big storm that hit the South Peace about an hour later.

Brilliant skies after another storm the second night.
This photo was taken at around 11:30 pm. Solstice was only two weeks earlier
so the region still gets 20 hours of sunshine per day.
Sights like this never cease to bring awe into my life.

I rode to Grande Prairie and had a nice visit with The Son and wee family.

We had a lot of fun at the wedding.

We had coffee with dear friends and supper with others.

And it was time to go home, this time the direct route via Whitecourt, Edson, Jasper, etc down Highway 5.

Looking west from Obed Summit on Hwy 16 - The Yellowhead - just east of Hinton.
On our way home, about to go through Jasper National Park


Sometimes a little nap - after 350km, half of which was dealing with headwinds! - is a good thing.

The route home. I love this country.

Looking south along Hwy 5 at Valemount.
Rode 560km yesterday. Only 400km left to go.
West view from the same spot. Valemount is in a wide valley.
This is prime snowmobiling country in the winter.

Come ride with us. We see such beautiful places - and yes, some butt-ugly ones as well.

*****

PS: look at this forecast!!!