The Mighty Dempster
Sara: It was all smiles and sunshine as we started out from the mile zero sign up to Tombstone. We had an amazing view from the campsite. We hiked up the Klondike river trail to see the ice still on the river.
There will be no photos from the day up to Eagle Plains because it poured rain all day. The riding was challenging at best. The mud was 4 inches thick for several hours and was like trying to drive in peanut butter. Thank goodness for our rain over suits!
Daniel: A little note about Sara is in order here. Wow was the mud bad. Like hardcore for the big guy bad. Like OMG we may not make it and why are we doing this stupid Dempster highway bad. Okay with this in mind picture tiny Sara on a very big machine, loaded to the max and weighing over five hundred pounds. Wow what a trooper. My wife is officially a hardcore adventure rider forged out of the mud of the Dempster at its very worst.
Sara: Eagle Plains “lodge” is quite the place as some of you will know. The locals say being stuck here is like being stuck in a dentists chair. The sun was finally out though and shining almost 24 hours a day. The first big landmark of the trip was crossing the Arctic circle . 50 km further north we entered the NWT. We included a photo of the “good mud”. We had 2 ferry crossings.
Finally we arrived in Inuvik! We checked into the Arctic Chalets and the owner Olaf gave us his truck to get to the North Mart before it closed. There was so much mud on the bikes that both fans were so clogged they were not working. Thanks again to Olaf and his power washer. We toured the town sights, including the igloo church, the visitor’s center, and the Jak’s tower look-out. We went to the cloud 9 at the airport for musk-ox chili and dipped our toes in the Mackenzie River at the east channel. We had dinner at the Mackenzie Hotel.
We set off early to get on the road while the sun was still shining. Stopping for a snack we took in the glory of the vista. Having traveled over 900 kilometers so far on the Dempster we had only happened upon six small rabbits. Disappointing to say the least. Just when we thought the northern highway was not going to reveal its wild inhabitants wow did we get treated to an arctic spectacle. Fifty kilometers north of the Arctic Circle in the gleaming sun and green tundra we happened upon a massive herd of Caribou. This day was adventure riding at its very best.
1 km = 1.6 Dempster kms
hitting the pavement in Inuvik = your first kiss