Wednesday, July 23, 2014

True Adventurer

This morning at College Coffeehouse, I met Mike Saunders who had stopped in Fairbanks to pick up an new rear tire for his 49cc Honda Ruckus before he heads up the Dalton Highway to Prudhoe Bay. If you check out his blog, he headed out from D.C. near the beginning of May, headed down to Key West before turning north exploring the country along the way at 30mph. Unlike most of the riders passing through Fairbanks on their way to Prudhoe, there is very little "extra" on the Ruckus, partly because there is very little room. He has primitive camped (i.e. not at campgrounds or RV parks) just about the entire way claiming to have only spent $4 on lodging so far on the trip.

If you check out the first couple of posts, he lists the mods to the Ruckus and the gear he was taking. I hope to be able to visit again on his way through Fairbanks after his trek up the Dalton to get an update. He has been riding for quite a while as evidenced by his well worn Roadcrafter jacket and even though he has an R1150GS, this is the bike he chose for his trip. That says something about him.

19 comments:

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    1. Pretty impressive trip and not just because it is on a scooter!

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  2. Richard:

    Wow ! He must have a lot of stories to tell

    bob: riding the wet coast

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    1. You should read some of his blog. Lots of stories.

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  3. Great post. I'm following his adventures.

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    1. I thought you'd like the story. Time to start planning your trip north!

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    1. Time for you to plan your adventure only you'll need to figure out which bike. The soon to be repaired Helix?

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  5. Awesome. It is one thing to do it with a credit card and fully loaded adventure bike, but to primitive camp and take a Rukus is not just an adventure, but takes some skills and patience too.

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    1. So now the guy with the TW200 coming up from Maryland had a large and powerful bike with tons of load capacity…

      For those on bicycles, 300 miles would be a couple days travel so it's all relative. I would enjoy having that kind of time.

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  6. Wow! Thank you so much for such a positive and glowing review of my travels and blog. It was a pleasure meeting you yesterday and sharing stories. I hope we can catch up next week when I return from the north. I look forward to sitting down at a computer and exploring your site some more. See you soon!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by and commenting! It was great to meet you and as soon as I saw the Ruckus outside, I figured there was a great story. I hope you have a safe and dry trip up north. I'm told that Atigun Pass received a couple of feet of snow.

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  7. Nice, must check out his blog.

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    1. He mentioned that he followed your trip last year. It made him think about whether he wanted a Ural or not.

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  8. as to why the adventurer chose the scooter vice his GS, I can see why....riding it by GS has been done, ad nauseum....I believe the joke is that in Alaska, with Spring, comes the inevitable annual migration of a plethora of BMW GS riders on their "adventure" bikes to ride to DeadHorse.

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    1. You got that right. And all with a hundred pounds of gear all stuff you can't buy in Alaska like tires...

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  9. It obviously isn't an adventure anymore if you ride a fully loaded GS.
    There must be a Ruckus somewhere under the luggage, I assume.
    What a bold idea. I will be heading over to his blog immediately. Thanks for the link.

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    1. Not just to Alaska. The road isn't quite superhighway yet but it probably isn't much different than driving across the country used to be. Pretty much paved all the way.

      The road to Prudhoe Bay is still a challenge but you don't need an adventure bike with every option in the Touratech catalog just for that trip. Lots of "lesser bikes" make the trip routinely. Including bicycles, Vespas and Harleys. ;-) It sort of depends on the weather.

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  10. After 10000 miles, I successfully rode my 49cc Ruckus from DC>Key West>Deadhorse! The ride to Coldfoot was wet and cold but manageable. Friday morning broke with white capped peaks above the "No Services 240 Miles" sign as I set out into the cold. Snow fell and temps dropped as I rose into the Brooks Range. 2-3" of ice and snow coated Atigun Pass with temps at 24F and a 30mph headwind. Snow blew the remaining 8 hours as the little ruckus labored through deep mud and rutted slippery muck to the Arctic Ocean. It was the hardest and most trying day of my 27 years and I will never forget it.

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