Hello USA! and (just about) surviving the Washington Back Country Discovery Route.
"Then is wasn't funny, then it was a wake up call when she went over the handlebars hitting her sternum and ripping off the front windshield and bending the handlebars".
We crossed the border into America on 15th September and by our calculations we had around 61 days left on our visa for the states as we had crossed the border for the first time on 17th August on our ill fated trip to Skagway.
So 8.5 weeks left to explore as much of the country as we can!
We had both wanted to complete at least one of the BDR's ...Back country discovery routes for motorcycles ...all off road, through forests and up and down mountains.
Little did we realise that these routes are more designed for enduro bikes with minimal luggage and not dual purpose bikes like ours loaded down with over 45kgs (95lbs) of portable housing! (mistake number 1).
We also planned to do them in reverse (mistake number 2) so the steep declines now became steep inclines! Doh!!!
Our first climb was pretty savage (or so we thought at the time) up a rocky and sandy mountain track. However the views were spectacular.
We had lunch on the side of a mountain.
Rode through burnt our forests.
Bec came off in cow pooh after running into a bunch of cows on the track, and all in all we didn't see anyone else all day and it was a great and educating 200kms of off road riding.
Day 2 and we hit this incredibly steep climb on a track only used by motorcycles that was all loose rock and sand ...often right next to the edge of a sheer drop, it was 9kms of sheer torture and the only way we got through was pure adrenalin and sheer determination.
Bec came off again... and again there was nothing worse than hurt pride.
If there had been an option to turn back at this point she would have taken it but we were half way up the hill ...there were no other options.
Then after this spill the road got worse, MUCH worse!
When we reached what we thought was the summit we stopped and congratulated each other and celebrated our success of getting ourselves and our bikes up this mountain. Bec laughed confided in Nick "were you scared? I was". and he replied "terrified!".
And then the adrenalin wore off and what was "gung ho" bravado turned into amazement at our foolishness for even attempting this,
- on these bikes,
- with this amount of luggage
- at our age!
And we decided that once down the bottom enough was enough and that we wanted to travel for the next 12 months and not be recovering in a hospital bed ...or worse!
HOWEVER! much like pain of child birth, the struggle and danger was soon forgotten and by the following day we were ready to head off again!
This time we were on relatively flat ground but in very deep silty/loamy sand with a texture much like flour. A whole new terrain and experience for both of us.
The first two times that Bec came off it was funny and the landings soft.
Then is wasn't funny; then it was a wake up call when she went over the handlebars hitting her sternum and ripping off the front windshield and bending the handlebars.
That was enough. Nick called time on this (fun?) foolishness and we tippy toed out onto the tar seal to find a Honda shop for repairs.