There also was in addition one straggler who planned to join up with us at Dease Lake on Tuesday night with his tentative departure from the Seattle area early Monday morning - a 1200 mile ride over 2-days. Not only that, but Dean had already ridden up from Southern California in an equally short amount of time; through Bend Oregon because there isn't one of us who won't go the long ways when offered that opportunity. And did I mention that he was on a brand new bike? A 500cc Honda Swiss army knife of a motorcycle that he was shaking down in preparation of ridding next year's Globeriders Cape to Cairo trip - and yes, I am jealous. Monday morning we were all woken up very early as a text message was delivered to our phones from Dean: "Across the border and am now in Canada". It was 5:00AM early in the morning.
We had a beautiful day heading up Highway 37 once waking up again at more reasonable hour.
And the wildlife count escalated with every mile as foxes, martins, marmots, and more bears were passed doing whatever foxes, martins, marmots and bears do along side of the road.
After dinner at the White food shack (partially because it was supposed to be the best food in town but mostly because the Blue shack - the other food option in town - was closed), in Dease Lake we received the second message of the Dean: "In Vanderhoof for the night". A 600 or so mile day's ride. And with that good news we cracked open the second bottle of Scotch for this trip... there were 4 soon to be 5 of us after all.
When I was growing up in Prince George (BC), during the winter time I seem to have ingrained in my mind that a place called Telegraph Creek always had the reported coldest temperatures during the nightly 6 o'clock TV news reports. It has been a place I have wanted to to go to ever since then. The road to Telegraph Creek is about 75 miles of infamous uncertainty so it was with some trepidation that some in the group face the next day with. But it was a glorious day and we all had blast even on the fresh calcium chloride being sprayed on the road to keep the dust down.
And yes we all made it all the way.
The best part may well have been at the store where we had a choice of day old rhubarb and blueberry pie or if we waited an hour, fresh out of the oven pie. Just as I believe that week old gazpacho is better than fresh gazpacho, day old rhubarb and blueberry pie is better than pie fresh out of the oven. And it damn near might have been the best pie I've ever had at the end of a 75-mile long dirt road, or anywhere else.
The day's ride finished behind the post office back in Dease Lake to get our bikes powered washed off of that nasty calcite stuff that can harden hard as cement.
Once showered and cleaned up it was time to check on just where Dean was - he has the same tracker technology I have. Once determined he was about an hour away we cracked open a round of beers (in Canada the plural for beer is beers), and waited while congratulating ourselves on the day's paltry 150 mile ride. Right on time Dean showed up so it was another round of beers all around as we oohed and aahed over the new bike - and his epic 1200 some odd mile ride to catch up with us.
After dinner (the White shack again because even though the Blue shack was open all the people were lined up at the White shack), it was back to the parking lot of the hotel to ooh and aah some more over the new bike. It was about this time that Ken asked while pointing at a vital connection point on the new bike, "Is that bolt supposed to be loose like that?". Turns out it shouldn't have been. After trying to reseat the bolt using every tool we could dig out of our tool kits and positioning the bike in all sorts of comprising positions...
Someone had the bright idea to make sure that the bolt wasn't stripped. It wasn't stripped - it was broken. Sheared off about a half inch inside the boss on the aluminum engine block. At that point there was nothing left do but have another beer and figure out what to do the next day.