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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've started this new thread since the other one was getting confused with tons of posts going on for ages before I left.

You can see that at Running Away





My dad called and told me not to ride at night to visit them. Spray paint can in hand, I was just about finished painting the racks, so I was really just about ready to go. Didn't want to hang around past the day I'd said I'd go yet again.

I rode out and was the only bike on the 9pm Ferry from Vancouver to the town I grew up in Victoria, BC. The ferry takes 90 minutes so I pulled in around 10:30 at night. After a series of mix ups and dead cell phones I sat at a gas station in Victoria with no friend's place to crash at. I decided to camp since I'll be doing that for months to come it should be good practice to start in a place I know.

As it turned out the place I thought I knew well had changed a fair bit, all the parks and beaches had new gates, and have signs advertising all the fines and penalties for daring to exist there between the hours of 11pm and 6am.

I tried several beaches, and two local hills, Mt Doug and Mt Tolmie. Victoria is a no fun place now, I remember driving around all of those places watching stars, now it's a fine for stopping there. I wonder what the high school kids will do now, sit and make out in cars at the walmart parking lot?

Finally risked sleeping up on Mt Doug, rode my capable offroad machine up the foot path and back onto the road past the gates, then rolled out a sleeping bag after a nice long ride up. beautiful but cold night so I wasn't sleeping much. I relocated to the lee of a nice warm stone wall to sleep, just as I drifted off, I heard a radio acknowledgment and somebody with a light having a good look around. High tailed it out of there, I didn't know I could pack so fast. By this point it was 3am, I was tired, frustrated and getting sloppy. I rode back out the Pat bay highway to try out a trick I read on ADVrider about sleeping up beside the exits/overpasses since that no one ever looks.

I took the first one that looked good, ignoring the foot high wet grass's effect on the traction of my old Spitfire street tires. Found a perfect bowl to sleep in, so I rode down into it, intending to park the bike on the far side and sleep there. For some reason I still can't figure out I stopped sideways on the slope and turned the bike off, dropping my damn keys in the process. Reaching around uphill for them, I started to slip, and leaned out to keep the bike upright, forgetting the downhill side wasn't going to have any footing. We fell over into the bush. No amount of cursing and heaving would convince Aurora to budge, I couldn't get traction for my feet on the wet grass, and the bush was preventing the bike from getting clear even if I could have lifted her more than a few inches. I realized later she'd dug in so well that the kick stand, mirror, and left cylinder were all pretty well stuck, and the tires were right up in the air.

After a few failed attempts to drag the back end around so I would at least be lifting from one side, rather than trying to lift uphill I was about ready to throw in the towel call my parents and get a car jack to push the bike up. I pulled off all the bags, unbolted the gas tank and seat, and just dug in and lifted, dropped her on the uphill side, bolted back on the gas tank, reattached all my bags and only dropped her once more getting out. Took about three hours, I was so tired I just parked on the top of the hill and went to sleep as the sun came up.

Lost almost all my gas before I took the tank off, and burned blue from all the oil in the cylinders later that morning.



looking down the hill, gas tank already off.





Finally over lying on the uphill side so I can clean off the dirt and load my bags again.







It was about a half an hour before I got Aurora to budge that I realized that this trip is where I belong. I wasn't miserable, I was frustrated with myself, but I found that same peace kneeling in the mud in that bush trying to move a bike that got me hooked in the first place while riding an out of oil GS400 with a slipping clutch from SK to BC. I would rather be here than living in quiet desperation in my comfortable suite at home.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Vaccinated.

|Again.

I'm writing this, sitting in a clinic waiting for my last round of vaccinations, before I get on the bike tomorrow, to ride south to the tip of Argentina and back, or as close to it as I can get. No minutely organized and scheduled plans with places to stay and organized logistics; just a very good reason to go, a need to sort myself out again and a rapidly developing addiction to my helmet. So far only the yellow fever inoculation yesterday has made me really regret letting a doctor anywhere near me with those needles of infectious liquid.

It's still surreal to me that the idea for this specific trip appeared under two months ago thanks to a pair of riders at the Horizons Unlimited West meet. Over a round of beers they heard how much I wanted to be travelling. They invited me to meet them part way and ride together. The chance to actually make it happen only came about one month ago, thanks to the person who changed my life over the past year, and who really set me free from a lot of my doubts, believing in me and my idea and putting me into contact with the teacher who was willing to sign off and sort out the paperwork and contacts to let me go without losing my spot as a photography student at Emily Carr University.

I was originally leaving earlier, but I didn't want to ruin my parent’s vacation by telling them before they left in September. Now that they are back and I've told them they have been amazingly supportive, a result I'm thankful for at the same time as I'm surprised by it. I expected a much different result, and I do feel bad about the worrying I'm sure they'll do. So, a lot of things have had to come together at just the right time to get me to this point - good and bad I'm thankful for all of them now.

All my life I've expected to travel, and so far I've always managed to keep from facing up to the idea with a limitless supply of reasons, always just putting it off a little longer. I've spent many years back packing, but always short trips. When I graduated from high school, I never suspected that I might still be here almost 5 years later, never having left British Columbia and still feeling out of place. I stepped into the “real world” early, by starting to work at 14 as a wood-turner. Once I graduated, it seemed natural to stay there, working far more than full time, always telling myself it was just a means to getting on the road, with the feeling I didn't quite belong wherever I was. Whether I never fit in anywhere because my leaving was just around the corner, or whether the need to go came from the poor fit, I don't think I'll ever know. This resulted in many failed projects, from sinking my money into building up a Jeep to travel in, to preparing for backpacking in Europe while never quite getting out the door. When I first moved to the big city to work, my mother gave me a copy of Jupiter's travels; Ted Simon's amazing journey on a motorbike around the world. This lead my dad to joke that this trip was her fault. That book led me into reading more and more online blogs and trip reports, but I probably would have ended up on the road this way eventually one way or another. After the work excuse wore a bit thin, as I still didn't have any money to show for it, and wasn't any closer to traveling I started going back to school, with everyone telling me once I finished that then I could really close the door and go. Happy with another excuse to avoid actually having to do anything I once again buried the travel idea under a long list of things to do first, still never ready to stay put. Throughout all of this time I read many travelogues, but the only ones that ever really got to me were those on the sea or on a motorbike. Not that I didn't enjoy the amazing ingenuity people show in ways of moving themselves around as strangely as possible, but the draw just wasn't there for me with those. I can't afford a sailboat, and motorbikes don't sink so the choice in the end was pretty easy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Here's my route over the first few days, I'm planning to spend a few nights in Lava Beds National monument, a place I visited once as a child and loved, before arriving at Larry Cargill's shop in Sacramento.







I picked up a Pentax K-7 I had shipped to my friend's house in Tumwater, buying used in the USA rocks, less than 1/2 what I'd pay in Canada.



I've had a Pentax Optio P&S for about 5 years now, it's getting a bit tired. Considering the abuse I've heaped on it from dropping down rocks to washing it in the ocean, it's a damn good travel camera.



Here's one of the first pictures with the new camera, not ride report related but a good test. now to figure out how to shoot on the bike.





 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
What a hell of a day three.

Left Tumwater pretty late and then, running south on I-5 somewhere between Tumwater and Hwy 12, my credit card and driver’s license vanished. The clip on my wallet came undone and they simply flew away. Good thing I was carrying a 2nd wallet with secondary ID, and my other card. There was lots of traffic and some construction along the way so I was starting to get a bit fed up with a long straight interstate and too much time with my thoughts. I even got to the point where I just felt like turning around since there was no point continuing the trip. If I'm not getting any excitement out of it and I'm not coming up with any good answers to my questions, then maybe I am just happiest when I've got something external to be miserable about. I hope that's not the case and I just enjoy the energy rush and the thinking that comes with getting dropped in the shit. A couple hours into Hwy-12 and the road fixed all my problems. Absolutely gorgeous riding! I cranked some nice Irish tunes, and rolled through a mix of nice sweeping turns, beautiful smooth new asphalt and nice scenery. The sky was clear blue, the valley floors looked up to some nice passes coming down around lakes with all the trees changing colour. The unsigned tightening turns gave me enough challenge to keep me on my toes. Lots of temperature changes made for a decent test of the rest of my gear - I definitely need some more warm clothing before Argentina. The arrow headed snake signs every few miles through a national park kept me smiling all the way; occasional sections of rough road with a “Motorcycles use extreme caution” sign and tight turns gave me a bit of variety when I got bored with the views and needed a challenge. Hardly any traffic at all except for the occasional big truck. I wonder if it's because Google maps steadfastly refuses to route anything this way unless you set it town to town manually dragging the lines, even with the highway avoidance turned on.





First day wearing Sidi Discovery boots but not sure if I'm a fan yet. The inside ankle plate on the right boot digs in something fierce when walking. I cut my leg in the few times I got off to take photos, and I'm marinating in them despite the reasonably cool day.

I wish I'd stopped for more photos but I was worried a bit by the coolness in the passes, and with my late start I needed to make some miles. This one, however, I had to stop for, after the best 2 hours of riding I've had yet. The road opened up into this valley, with the sun setting behind me and the moon rising over the ridge at the same time.









Best of all, not a single damn deer in sight but there are lots of dead raccoons. I'm beginning to wonder if people are running them over on purpose.

I had forgotten from my last ride (Sk to BC on a GS400) how much smell plays a part in the ride. The feeling of being there from hot and cold is one thing; but to me it's the smell that makes the biggest change from being in a car. Seems like most of the smell, good and bad comes from death, the unpleasant ones like the large slaughterhouse and cattle area I rode past, the deep peaceful earth smell of rotting vegetation in the forest, the delicious smell of all the dead trees on the backs of trucks as I pass. I can always smell the lumber trucks before I see them. Towns and States/Provinces have smells as well, over and above the smells of laundry and cooking you get close in. BC smelled sharp. So far one town has smelled like dill, another like pine sawdust, and the last, very strongly like black tea.



That afternoon of riding has solidified my resolve, I'm over the day three hump, and with such a great ride I'm looking forward to more. I'm so thankful to be out on this trip. This is where I belong. Time to do some more homework - I wrote about 2000 words yesterday but with midterm papers and a photo assignment to finish up by Friday I need some downtime, so yet again I'm back at McDonald’s for the free internet.







Here's a photo of a fellow working at a gas station who helped me sort out air for my bike, it's hard to find a compressor at the gas stations that fit into my rear wheel. We had a long visit as well while I warmed up.



 

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Quick question JG. Would you prefer this thread be left as the diary, and not commented upon? If so, I'll hold respect for that. Since I am here now, and writing, let me just quickly say.....



Such an incredible journey for such a young fellow. Ambition flows through your words as easily as fuel to our CV carbs.



Safe and serene travels, my friend. You are inspired, and inspiring.




Joel in the Couve
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Quick question JG. Would you prefer this thread be left as the diary, and not commented upon? If so, I'll hold respect for that. Since I am here now, and writing, let me just quickly say.....



Such an incredible journey for such a young fellow. Ambition flows through your words as easily as fuel to our CV carbs.



Safe and serene travels, my friend. You are inspired, and inspiring.




Joel in the Couve




Larry is sitting here reminding me I haven't told anyone my name! I'm so used to my username, I answer to it in person too, as more people talk to me by way of the internet than in real life anyways, it's just my initials including my middle name, and some letters on the end so the forum will let me have it.

So Hi, I'm Jeremy Brown.



I did a ton of editing and posting today. I am more than happy for people to comment, it's what makes threads more interesting than a blog, I have a blog as well for people who just want the story. The only issue with the other thread was tons of my posts were out of order, I also wanted to edit out a lot of the details of personal stuff I was sorting out in my head, some of it belongs here since it is a part of the trip, but we can skip the details as well as all the back and forth setting up for the trip, now that it's all in order everything should be perfect. and easier for anyone who wasn't involved in the thread from the start.



Thank you for the nice compliments, I don't feel inspiring, but that's awesome if something good comes of this trip
 

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I think Johnnie Cash did that song way before I heard of Bob Dylan Great writing and photography. Keep it up.
 

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Jeremy, thanks for living out my dream, as I am sure many others too. You will find many places of inspiration along



the way. I am wondering if you have followed "Paddy Tysons" journey?



Be very careful on the Northern border of Mexico and USA, I will be watching your journey closely with much envy.



With your talent as a photographer and writer, I see a "best seller" at the end of your journey.



Best of luck to you.

Rick D
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I'm going to try and find the Johnny Cash version now, thanks!



I haven't seen Paddy Tyson's trip do you have a link?



You can live out the dream too! It really isn't that expensive if you are careful.

I'm meeting a couple and their kids somewhere in South America, they are traveling in a short school bus with the bike on the back.

I know of another couple who ride around Africa with their young child, who have had a great time so far.









Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance wasn't my favorite book, it was interesting separate from the motorcycle part.

Two wheels into Terror was good, not quite exactly my taste, but good.



By far my favorite book is an older one as well, and the book that got me into motorcycles in the first place, Jupiter's Travel's by Ted Simon, at once introspective and very perceptive about what's going on in the outside world it is a great read.





Ted Simon is still alive, and did another trip, following his original route, it was a sad and somewhat bitter book in places, as everything had changed.

His website is running, with a blog type format as well, great reading.
 

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Jeremy, Paddy Tyson has a website with some excerpts from his book, he has travelled the world on motorcycle and



clocked over a million miles. His site is HERE.



He can also be followed in the Ontario published Canadian motorcycle magazine titled, "Motorcycle Mojo" which is



online HERE. Paddy has excerpts their in each edition.



Stay safe and keep well.



Rick D
 

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Just remember. "Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati"
 

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Just remember. "Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati"


Thought I recognized that.



[media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skfnxkixBp4[/media]
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Day 4 into 5 part 1.



View from under my tarp





I Started off day four just past Umatilla waking up on the side of the highway after just barely enough sleep to a beautiful but freezing cold morning sunrise. I'd camped next to a huge Walmart distribution hub They had some really nice fields and a disused entry road off the side of the highway, perfect place to catch some sleep. It was cold when I went to sleep, and colder still when I woke up.







If you were at HU Canada West, you might recognize the set up style of my tarp, but this time I didn't get any complaints made about it.



Camp for the night





Frost all over the bike.





Packed up and ready to go





I made my traditional morning stop and McDonald’s to use the internet and warm up for a while. The sun came out, everything started warming up and I started to feel like I was really heading south into warmth and sun. Back on the road, I was drying out, but bored rolling south on I82 still wearing my waterproof pants without noticing their vents. Trying to stay ahead of trucks, and in a nice space in traffic I was doing about 65mph, to keep a nice bubble on either end. Seems that sometime in the last leg of my ride I rolled into Umatilla, and crossed the Oregon border, with an accompanying drop in Interstate speed from 70mph for everything but trucks to 55mph for all traffic. Looking back I realized I was potentially up for a performance award, as I was pulled over by a state trooper. After a bit of clarification about speeds permitted in Oregon he checked out my passport, motorcycle permit and insurance paperwork since i still thought I had lost my license and visa on the side of I5. I asked if I could get a photo for the forum, but he wasn't sure what the regulations were about it. So I took a picture in the other direction where I was stopped.







With an uncomfortable seat and soaking wet pants I'd been standing up, and shifting from side to side when I was actually sitting. I'm glad he just missed that performance or I bet I'd have a nice award to show for it.

getting off I82 and onto US395 was fantastic, Mark, a rider I met on the Port Angeles ferry insisted it was a great route better than I-5 or the 101. Despite the increase in distance, he was absolutely right.



Mark unloading off the Port Angeles ferry





It wasn't as easy as I-5s straight and fast path, or as scenic and warm as the 101. But it was a rider's road, perfect pavement, new enough to be smooth and even, but old enough not to be oily or soft. Big sweeping turns, and tons of variety in the scenery. The landscape changing from forest to fields to hot canyons with sharp tight turns and desert to high mountain passes.

Friendly trees



Looking back down the road in Oregon





obligatory sign picture



A good writer once said that riding is much like being a Prince in Amber, and it's certainly true.

All of this nice weather left me with no idea of what I was going to be doing over the next 30 hours.
 

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JG, your quest reminds me of a good read made movie called 'into the wild'. Good luck. You're doing something many of us wished we would have (save the going through Mexico and much of Central and SA part for me). I am hopeful for a non-dramatic end to this read.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
JG, your quest reminds me of a good read made movie called 'into the wild'. Good luck. You're doing something many of us wished we would have (save the going through Mexico and much of Central and SA part for me). I am hopeful for a non-dramatic end to this read.




My username seems to mess with a few people, sorry! I had to add enough extra letters since somebody stole my usual username which is just my 3 initials(JGB). I answer to that pretty well, and my first name is Jeremy, sometimes I miss something I ought to reply to with JG if I'm rushing.

I forgot to introduce myself until Larry reminded me, sorry!



Thank you! I'm trying to bring everyone along, or as close as I can to making it so everyone can actually be there with today's technology. I'm still working on understanding video, I'm a bit overwhelmed with all the technology at the moment.



I hope I'm not going to end up like Alex Supertramp
either, a non dramatic ending would be nice.



I am doing my best to go in with the equipment, skills and behavior that will allow me to get there.

I find I need a certain level of risk, without the chance of failure, it seems like playing with cheatcodes, but I don't want to gamble or be reckless like that book/movie's character.



The technology that I'm bringing is a double edged sword, while I can't be truly free and alone, or entirely part of what goes on around me with it on me, as I'm always aware of it as though I'm an observer not truly a participant sometimes. It is still relatively unobtrusive for what it does and does give my family a good deal more peace of mind about the trip too.
 
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