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Thread: Little GS, Big Adventure - F650GS to Alaska from Philly leaving 5/21

  1. #1
    Registered User jhbfly's Avatar
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    Little GS, Big Adventure - F650GS to Alaska from Philly leaving 5/21

    So, I’m finally doing it again. Another big transcontinental trip. Ever since finding my way to Spokane for the 2004 MOA Rally I’ve yearned to make another BIG North American trip. That trip becomes reality starting next Thursday, May 21 – out the driveway in Malvern, PA and on the way again. Destination, Anchorage, Alaska by June 5th. Mapquest says it’s about 4400 miles. By the time I get there I’m pretty sure it’ll be close to 5000 miles. Route will take me to Detroit, where I lived for over 30 years, the first day (600 “slab” miles.) I’ll spend a day with Michigan friends, then the trip will really begin. My hope is to get to Dawson Creek, at the head of the Alaska Highway in one week and then on to Anchorage the second week. In Anchorage I’ll be joined by my wife and another couple for a week of “touristy” travel (Denali, Fairbanks, etc) by train and car. Then at the end of the week I’ll shovel everyone onto an airplane and I myself will commence to find my way back home by a considerable less direct route. Is there anyone out there with great destination and routing ideas for that return leg? Also, I’d be interested in knowing about any meets, rallies or the like on the way out or back. I’m thinking of the AK highway to Watson Lake then south to Prince George, BC then on Southward to re-enter the US at Seattle. From Seattle Eastbound who really knows. I need to be back home to the Philly area by about July 3. I did the 2004 trip on an R1150RT but for this one I’m headed out on a 2009 F650GS twin. I’m really looking forward to traveling on the lighter GS. I plan to regularly post stories and pics here while on the road. Anyone who is interested can also follow my trip on my blog at http://www.2wheels2alaska.com
    Jack Broomall
    Malvern, PA
    #65086
    Last edited by jhbfly; 05-12-2009 at 08:42 PM.
    '09 F650GS

    Read about my 2009 Alaska trip at:
    http://www.2wheels2alaska.com

  2. #2
    BUBBAZANETTI
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    welcome to the forum

  3. #3
    Registered User jhbfly's Avatar
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    Thanks Derek. I Think I'm gonna have fun here (and on the road too!
    Jack
    '09 F650GS

    Read about my 2009 Alaska trip at:
    http://www.2wheels2alaska.com

  4. #4
    It is what it is. Bud's Avatar
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    Well, that's a pretty good first post!

    Good luck. Looking forward to reading about your adventures.
    I used to post here, but now I don't.

  5. #5
    Registered User Beemer01's Avatar
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    I'll look for you -

    Leaving Chicago 5-21 aiming for the Yukon. Riding a bright yellow 1150GS, Illinois plates.

  6. #6
    Survivor akbeemer's Avatar
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    Jack,

    Another welcome. Look me up when you are in Fairbanks; my email is k.huddy@uaf.edu. Too bad your not riding up here as well. I suspect you may already have housing lined up, but if not check out this thread.

    http://www.bmwmoa.org/forum/showthread.php?t=34373
    Kevin Huddy
    Intrepid Incompetent
    Tm Pterodactyl MT Outpost

  7. #7
    Registered User jhbfly's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for the kind welcomes.

    For Beemer01, looks like I'll be a couple of days behind you. Where are u headed in the Yukon? I'll probably spend one night in Whitehorse on the way up and also returning.

    To AKBeemer, Thanks on the tip for Fairbanks lodging at the university. We are all set for the portion of the trip in Fairbanks with wife and friends. However it's still an open possibility to head back up to Fairbanks (and perhaps farther North!) on the return trip. Will keep it in mind and try to drop u a line when I'm in FBK.

    Ride safe, have fun!

    Jack Broomall
    '09 F650GS

    Read about my 2009 Alaska trip at:
    http://www.2wheels2alaska.com

  8. #8
    Registered User jhbfly's Avatar
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    Wednesday May 20 is Day 0 !

    My ride to Alaska is going to "officially" start from RevZilla Motorsports, 38 Jackson St, Philadelphia, PA 19148 on Wednesday, May 20, at 1:30 PM If you're in the Philly area come on out and say hi! More info at http://www.2wheels2alaska.com
    Hoping to see Philly area motorcyclists there to support me and my favorite charity The Austin Hatcher Foundation
    Ride safe,
    Jack
    '09 F650GS

    Read about my 2009 Alaska trip at:
    http://www.2wheels2alaska.com

  9. #9
    Registered User xp8103's Avatar
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    Jack,
    Best of luck to you! Keep good notes, I see an ON chronicle in the near future!
    Nik #140220 - '88 K75C | '96 R1100RS | '77 R100RS | '06 DL650
    '01 525iT (oOO=00=OOo)

    Helmets don't save lives but loud pipes do?

  10. #10
    Registered User jhbfly's Avatar
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    I'm working pretty hard to make sure this trip is documented, chronicled, and shared both completely and, as far as possible, in real time. (and having fun doing so!)
    '09 F650GS

    Read about my 2009 Alaska trip at:
    http://www.2wheels2alaska.com

  11. #11
    High & Dry statdawg's Avatar
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    Jack

    What is harder preparing for, the Speed Record or sorting out this venture ?

    Best of luck and we will be riding with you.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  12. #12
    Brett
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    If you have the opportunity on the way home don't miss Red Lodge Montana, up to bear tooth pass, and the chief Joseph highway into Cody Wyoming and Yellowstone. If you are coming that way you can also catch Glacier Nat park before this and the bad lands in South Dakota after. All part of a ride I did a few years ago and really loved these areas. Also if you forgot anything stop in Altoona pa on the way i'm sure I have spares lol.

    Brett Endress
    Altoona pa

  13. #13
    Registered User jhbfly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Statdawg View Post
    Jack

    What is harder preparing for, the Speed Record or sorting out this venture ?

    Best of luck and we will be riding with you.
    Geez, that's a tough question. They are SO different. The Bonneville thing is all about making 2 more horsepower on the dyno, picking the correct gearing, tweaking your tucked seating position around to get even "smaller". figuring out how to get less drag out of wheel bearings and brake hardware, ad infinitum.......and all this for a ride that only lasts about 20 seconds through the flying mile. The cross country adventure stuff adds the dimensions of navigation, serving as a travel agent, dealing with oblivious drivers of cages while they text message, the vagaries of weather and road conditions, fatigue, and the simple fact that the whole enterprise last a whole lot longer! Different as they are, however, they both begin by formulating a goal, and then following through with a well thought out plan. Hopefully my plan for the Alaska trip works out as well as the Bonneville thing did in 2008! Thanks for following and for the good wishes!
    Jack Broomall
    '09 F650GS

    Read about my 2009 Alaska trip at:
    http://www.2wheels2alaska.com

  14. #14
    Registered User motorman587's Avatar
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    If I were on a GS I would do the haul road to Prudoe Bay/Deadhorse and then jump in the Arctic Ocean. You have to do back ground check which has a 24 hour return. The area up there is owned by oil companys, so you can not directly jump in the water. The sight sounds and smell is nothing that you can read about as you travel the couple hundred miles of gravel road. You can and will see all types of wild life up there.

    Another place that puts a dot on the map for me is Hyder Alaska. Eat at the bus and then go to the Glacier Inn and get "Hyderized".
    John
    2004 BMW R1150R Black
    Contact me 4 (1&1) training, Expert witness in motorcycle crash reconstruction

  15. #15
    Registered User jhbfly's Avatar
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    Prudhoe Bay is, for sure, on my "possible" list. I can't do it on the way North because I'm kinda on a schedule to get to Anchorage to meet with wife and others. On the other hand, after I put them all on an airplane headed home I've got a bit more discretionary time. That would be my chance to make a shot at the Arctic Ocean, or at least Coldfoot and the Arctic Circle. I Will wait till I'm up there to decide based on weather, etc. Life sure is full of possibilities, no?
    '09 F650GS

    Read about my 2009 Alaska trip at:
    http://www.2wheels2alaska.com

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