This is my first ride report and although it’s not very adventurous, it is a great ride. Also, I see way too many RR’s of people heading to
Anyway, my route would have me starting out in
My ride is an ’02 VFR that I got this past winter with some slight cosmetic damage. I repainted it, added
Although I’m riding with all of my luggage, I’m packed very light as I wont be camping (timing didn’t allow) and I’m only gone for 3 days. I like having the trunk to just throw stuff in for easy access. Spot rides there too.
So, here I am riding away from the sunrise heading west from
I had to stop for breakfast and gas so I pulled into the golden arches for a quick grease up. Hard to complain about rotten Ronny’s when you have a view like this….
Then on the road again past
Unfortunately there was construction for about 20 km’s along highway #1 between
I turned north on the Parkway, stopped at the ranger station and showed my park pass and headed up the road for my first coffee stop at a small lake about 3 km’s up the road. Not a sole was around and I enjoyed my coffee with this view:
Times like these are when you sit and appreciate the good decisions you’ve made in life in order to be able to experience places like this with the freedom of a motorcycle
Back on the road, traffic was light due to my early start. My ride kept getting stopped due to the incredible scenery though. There wasn’t a breath of wind or a cloud in the sky so I kept stopping to enjoy the views and take pictures. I was working hard to not feel like I needed to get going. At a couple of the stops there were a few tour busses full of foreigners experiencing Canada’s beauty so it was a bit laughable when they started taking pictures of me in my Darth Vader attire complete with mirrored visor… Oh well, I guess I took pictures of Geisha when I was in
Next stop, gas at the Saskatchewan Crossing gas station then on to the Columbia Icefields. This was actually the first time I’ve been here in the middle of summer and have to say it’s beautiful.
I stopped along the side of the road to enjoy another coffee away form the crowds (I’m not a crowd guy. I’m from the prairies, I grew up in a town of less that 1000 people…). Anyway, I parked across the road from the marker that indicates where the glacier was in 1942. Pretty dramatic reduction in size in the last 66 years…. The 1908 marker was way out by the main highway.
Back on the road, I continued up to a nice lodge just south of Jasper for a quiet lunch by the river. As I was rolling in I noticed chairs lined up along the river bank for people to enjoy quiet time on. There was a guy sitting reading so being the nice guy that I am, I hit the kill on my bike so as to disturb him as little as possible. I proceeded to unpack my lunch and sit and enjoy a great lunch and a glass of wine:
Unfortunately, I never did actually shut off the key on the bike so it sat there with the lights/grips etc on for about a ½ hour or more… So, when I hit the button she just clicked… Fortunately 2 couples on an ST-1300 and Wing had just pulled in so I go one the guys to give me a push. Off I go into Jasper to get myself some fuel.
The ride from Jasper to Highway 40 is quite nice and brings you out of the mountains and into the foothills. There’s a nice lake along the way on both sides of the roads. It was about 85 degrees so there were quite a few people out. Crazy clear water.
A short time later I was fortunate enough to see a black bear mother and here 2 cubs safely cross the road.
It also got me thinking that I hadn’t seen any wildlife to this point, which is really unusual for this area. I find viewing wildlife in their natural state to be one of the highlights of riding in remote areas (ie NOT
The rest of the ride up through Grand Cache and
I arrived in
Anyway, another hour and a half in the northern prairie and I’m at my destination and drinking good beer!
Day 2 and 3 to come.
Wes Hill, P.Eng.
Quicksilver Resources Canada Inc.
(403) 538-5873 Office
(403) 831-7229 Cell