After a good nights sleep we all started getting our bikes loaded around 8am. We had a big group all at the same hotel so we were all chatting and planning out our day. Our “troop leader” Boy Scout Jim Lebiedz was reliable as always, I needed an extra bungee and guess who had a couple for me! It was nice and sunny this morning in Haines Junction, but Jim was prepared with a full weather forecast and informed us there would be rain in at least two sections of our route. It was still pretty cold and we would be riding through some mountains, so on went all the layers. I am so glad I got HD heated gear! I can now avoid getting numb fingers! We left as a big group again, with Sherri Newel and Julie Forsyth riding ahead to find a tent for Sherri who was missing her tent poles! Some of the group wanted to meet with Julie and Sherri in Whitehorse for breakfast while others wanted to keep riding to Teslin. So once we got to Whitehorse, we all fueled up and part of the group stayed for breakfast while the rest of us continued on.
When Taren got a flat tire on the first day, a couple of bikers from Ontario had stopped to offer assistance. We have been running into them along the route ever since! They are on a couple of HD’s and are on their way home from a trip to Alaska. They were even in our store in Anchorage the day before we left. It is cool how you have a special bond with other HD riders on the road.
While on the ride, my group stopped in Teslin for some lunch. My only complaint with this trip is the lack of good food. If you are like me and don’t eat a lot of burgers and fries you are pretty much out of luck on finding good food. I guess that is what you get when the majority of their customers are truckers. While we were finishing up Cherri and Glen Marunde walked in. Perfect timing, so they could join us for the rest of the ride. Cherri and Glen are good people, from North Pole, AK. They have bought a couple bikes from us at The House of Harley, but I know them from their daughter Jamie. Jamie and I had a couple college courses together at UAA and have been friends ever since.
While we were gassing up in Teslin after lunch, we were told by a motorist that there was a lot of rain up ahead. The first thing we did when leaving town was go over a large metal bridge that is basically a lot of metal grates that you ride over. It is a pretty weird sensation and you pretty much have to let your bike kinda squirm along and not fight it. Since we were told there would be rain ahead, we all put on all our layers. During the ride, I was happily surprised to find some wet roads, but the rain storm over. We literally missed every rain cloud on the way and had great weather! It was a pretty smooth day, the roads were nice and the weather was cooperative. It was still pretty cold, so I used the heated gear again. When we were on our way to Watson Lake, we pulled into a small hotel/restaurant with our favorite Canadian there waving us down and taking pictures of us riding in. Dewey, aka Duane Esler was there to greet us and ride into his town of Watson Lake.
Dewey is one of those riders who has become part of our local family since he joins us every year for the HOG rally and knows most of us on a first name basis. He is a cool dude and offered boarding to a few of the group and a party by the fire for all of us after dinner. Right before Watson Lake we pulled into a silly “tourist trap” store and mingled for a bit.
Then the group staying with Dewey headed to town and the rest of us saddled up and headed to the hotel. A few of us, met for dinner at a place called Kathy’s with supposedly the best burgers in the Yukon…again, I don’t eat those so I had a plate of rabbit food. After some laughs and good road conversation we all headed on our way to our rooms etc to rest up before the next big adventure!