Living the Dream
Well things are changing on a daily basis and the last few days have drastically changed my previous notions of a lonely bike tour.
After a couple of days of rest it was time to head out on the road once again, this time towards the Canadian border to the East. It has taken me 4 days to get to Tok where I am taking a rest day and we shall be crossing into Canada on the 4th of July. The weather has been consistently overcast/drizzly and rainy at times but we have endured thus far. I say “we” because there have been a few changes in the previous days. But first, let’s back up a bit….
After leaving Fairbanks, I had a shortish rainy bike towards North Pole, AK and a nice stay in a hostel a little bit further down the road. It was great seeing Santa Claus and I even hung out in the official Santa Claus House trying to wait out a storm to no avail.
I was excited go get out of the rain and actually see Santa. I needed to remind him that I had been a really good boy this year and not to forget to get me an Alpacka Packraft and Rohloff rear hub for my bike!
After unsuccessfully waiting out a storm I realized I needed to continue to cycling lest I get stuck only 12 miles outside of Fairbanks in even heavier rain. I ended up staying at a random roadside hostel out of the rain and even got a reduced price due to the hostel owner taking sympathy on a cold wet cyclist.
After that it was off to Delta where I got a chance to take a relaxed day of cycling with a slight tailwind, overcast weather and many touristy shops along the way.
Upon getting to my campsite in Delta Junction I ran into a fellow cyclist, Roger. This 65 yr. old man had been cycling since Arlington, TX and was headed to the North Pole the next day for a week of rest. As Roger and I were preparing camp, two guys my age walked by and proudly announced that they too were on a tour! They were Konetomo from Japan and Lang from Korea. They had met in Denali N.P. and had been riding together for a few days by that point. We ended up having a wonderful dinner and over dinner decided than since Kanetomo, Lang and I were cycling in the same direction to the same destination we would cycle together!
The next morning saw us sendinf Roger off and Kanetomo, Lang and I heading out to Dot Lake. Upon getting to Dot Lake we were caught by a rainstorm and sought refuge in a church of all places. We decided that the historic Dot Lake Chapel would make for a nice camp for the night so we set up shop there.
After that is was off for me nice and early as I had a package to pick up in Tok (a larger tent, yay!) and I did not want to get to the post office too late. Upon getting my package and running across to get on the internet and re-package my old tent I ran into yet another cyclist, Greg Mu (www.gregmu.wordpress.com). Crazy!
We decided to camp together along with Kanetomo and Lang who were a few hours behind. After laundry and a nice dinner (unlimited salad bar!!!!) we returned to our camp to find 4 cyclist from Mexico camped next to us!!!!! This was starting to get a little crazy at this point. It got even better when all 8 of us realized we were headed in the same direction for at least the next 1.5 weeks.
Thus, the unholy alliance of the roving junk show on wheels was born. After our rest day today we will all start rolling towards Canada and onward together. Who knows what will happen? All I can say is that this trip has not had a dull moment yet.
Tonight we shall all have a massive cookout and drink plenty of beer to solidify our new crew. I shall make sure to post pics of the loaded junk show on the road when I get a chance.
For those interested:
Day 12 Fairbanks-3 Dog Night Hostel 40 miles
Day 13 3 Dog night Hostel-Delta Junction C.G. 65 miles
Day 14 Delta Juntion C.G.-Dor Lake Chapel 62 miles
Day 15 Dot Lake Chapel-Tok 53 miles
Fairbanks to Tok total 220 miles
Lessons learned thus far:
1. The more the merrier, always.
2. Always, always seek out other people. even if only to say “Hi”
3. Showers are a gift from God!
The journey continues and only time will tell what happens next. For now, I am stoked to have so much company and look forward to getting into a little trouble in the coming week with this rowdy group of young males on bikes!
That’s all for now.