Canada Continues and back in the US

Day 4: Muncho Lake to Pullout on side of road near Prince George

Another long day of driving, about 650 miles. Nothing exciting happened, but we made some friends along the way.

 Day 5 – 6: Vancouver!!!

Made it to Vancouver pretty late in the evening on Friday. Kat and Sam were super accommodating and let us crash at their place on super short notice- thanks again! Unfortunately Kat had to work on Saturday, so she missed out on #35 at Phenom Penh, which is a really killer cambodian restaurant downtown that I have recurring dreams about.

Day 7 – 8: Blasting through Washington to Portland, OR

We headed south on Sunday, crossing the border without issue. We bee-lined through Washington, and spent the night with Jenny’s aunt south of Portland, OR. We hung out and had a little fire with Jenny’s cousins and their kids, then parked the truck and trailer and crashed for the night.

On Monday we celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving by changing the brakes on the truck. I was a little sketched out by how much the brakes heated up while descending some of the passes in BC, so I decided to change the pads for some cheap peace of mind. The brakes were actually in pretty good shape, despite 63,000 miles on the truck, but the new pads went on and that was that. We visited with Jenny’s other cousin and her new son then said our goodbyes before driving to Wilsonville to have dinner with Jenny’s best friend Lindsey and her husband, Dickalus (Sorry Nick, couldn’t help ourselves). After some libations including whiskey desert, we randomly decided to do some riding the next day at Sandy Ridge, so we drove out there and camped out at the trailhead.

Day 9: Sandy Ridge and Portland

We did a pretty fun ride which was basically a pretty decent climb on a paved road, followed by a few miles of downhill single track. For the most part, the riding was non-technical and fairly flowy, which our hard tail XC bikes handled really well. However, at the top there were a few rock bridges that were fairly randomly inserted in the trail which was too much for our bikes/skill and were enough to draw tears. I end-oed pretty fantastically after making it through one mildly technical section. Below that, the trails were fun.

Jenny and her whip

The scenery was decidedly “sandy” partially due to the current drought/dry year, and was less of the old growth, rainforest Oregon stereotype that we expected. We cruised back to Portland to have dinner with our friend Kelly. While we were parking I ran our bikes which were mounted onto the roof of our trailer into a low tree on the side of road and completely destroyed the fork on my bike. I am not sure how it managed to break into four separate pieces, but it did. The rest of the bike and the trailer were relatively unharmed. Luckily I have a rigid fork with me that I can put on there, so we are not done riding… We had a solid dinner with Kelly, then drove south.

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Canada

Day 3: Near Whitehorse to Muncho Lake

More driving! We covered about 440 miles today, stopping for breakfast along Teslin Lake- mmm greyish yellow over easy eggs. There was a little bit of road construction here and there, one particular stretch of steep loose washboarded gravel was particularly unnerving with the trailer in tow. This picture makes the hill look about half as steep as it really appeared.

“Fun” gravel road section

Near the end of the day we stopped at whirlpool canyon where we debated if we would survive a run with the venerable SeaHawk II, which is probably the most elite level inflatable raft in the “extreme pool toy” class.

Jenny, Lucy and Chandler, undated photo

The water looked fairly low and probability of survival seemed high. Unfortunately (or luckily?) the SeaHawk was left in good hands back in AK.

Whirlpool Canyon

Lucy worked on some geological investigations.

Lucy looking stoic

When she was done, we drove to Liard Hot Springs for a quick soak. We saw bison around the hot springs, and took possibly the worst photos ever taken of them. Sorry.

Blurry bisons, no those ones in the foreground aren’t dead, just sleeping (I think)

We spent the night in a nice, secluded highway gravel pit above Muncho Lake that night. We were entering a mountainous part of the route, and had gained some elevation, so it was very chilly that night.

Gravel pit above Muncho Lake, cold!