Cyclerides.com Weekly Update
Well, I am back, getting caught up and ready to share our latest ride with you. As you probably know by now, our ride this year took us from Spokane, Washington North to Banff, Alberta Canada, through Calgary and back into the States East of Glacier National Park through the Lewis and Clark National Forest and Red Lodge, Montana, the Beartooth Pass, Chief Joseph Highway, Cody Wyoming, into Sturgis and the Black Hills. A total of 8 days covering 2500 miles.
For the third year in a row, we shipped the bike to Downtown HD in Seattle where I flew in and rode the bike to Spokane. Mrs. C. met me in Spokane and on Monday morning, July 31st we were on our way to Banff for the next 2 nights. Most of you know by now, I love to ride, especially on long trips, as evidenced by my 13 month old Road Glide odometer that just surpassed 15,400 miles. I have to admit, my excitement was starting to build when we got the T-Bag loaded onto the bike, Mrs. C. situated behind me and the GPS locked onto Banff, at 4537 feet, the highest town in Canada.
When I turned on the ignition, toggled the switch to "Run" and pushed the "Start" button, you could have pulled a 14 year old boy out of this 50 year old body. I couldn't wait to get that first 100 miles behind us. It seems as though every time I embark on a motorcycle ride, the dreams and anticipation of what we are about to see and experience on this next adventure creates a sort of giddiness in me that is hard to explain. But I guess that is why there is the old saying, "If I had to explain it, you wouldn't understand".
Those nine words couldn't be more true when it comes to motorcycle riding. For those that have not experienced a good long motorcycle trip, there is no way to explain how you can ride through heat, torrential rains, bugs, wind, cold and hail, and somehow reflect on it with an eager smile on your face.
How do I explain it?
"It is the opportunity to travel the back roads of America and intimately see, feel and smell this great Country that we live in, almost as if it were from the "inside out". And it is those special one of a kind moments, which cannot be duplicated, that overcome the inconveniences of travel on a motorcycle". But if you don't take that first step to get out of your comfort zone, that is everyday life, you will never know what I mean.
This reminds me of one of my favorite Garth Brooks songs called "The River".
Here are a few lines of the lyrics from the second verse that might be talking about you:
Too many times we stand aside, And let the waters slip away
Till what we put off till tomorrow, has now become today
So don't you sit upon the shoreline, And say you're satisfied
Choose to chance the rapids, And dare to dance that tide
And I will sail my vessel, 'Till the river runs dry
Like a bird upon the wind, These waters are my sky
I'll never reach my destination, If I never try
So I will sail my vessel, 'Till the river runs dry
To play the song, Click Here.
Ok, now that you can see that I am passionate about riding and am encouraging you to give it a try, I will finish telling you about the first couple of days of our trip. We leisurely made our way on Hwy. 95 the 139 miles from Spokane to the Canadian border in British Columbia at Kingsgate where we got a first look at the Canadian countryside. Canada is a beautiful place to ride. The Canadian Rockies are older, bigger and more majestic that we have South of the border. We then went through many small Canadian towns the next 140 miles of our journey to Hwy. 93, the entrance of Kootenay National Park near Radium Hot Springs. This was now the beginning of the last 84 miles of our journey that would take us through Kootenay and into Alberta which is the home of Banff National Park and to the Rimrock Resort overlooking the Valley of Banff. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but the roads through the parks are excellent and well maintained.
On our way into Banff we opted to take Hwy. 1A also known as the Bow Valley Pkwy. This is a much more scenic route and is known for a better chance at seeing wildlife. Many of you know we are big animal lovers and are always looking for that opportunity to see something in the wild. You might also know that typically have the worst luck at seeing wildlife as a rule. Mrs. C. and I always kid each other that the animals must send out a memo that the Caraway's are coming and to make sure and hide. Well, as it happened there were 2 Elk that didn't get the memo and we were able to capture them on film, and boy was it a good one. This guy was huge and had a gigantic rack. We thought with seeing this kind of animal in the first 15 minutes of arriving in Banff that this was finally going to be our year to see some bear, big horn sheep, caribou and other wildlife.
Wrong! I won't keep you waiting on the edge of your seat for the answer to this one. That was it! Other than a couple of random deer and a couple of goats that was all we saw. We finally had to go to a zoo in Rapid City known as Bear Country to see any wild animals. That story and photos will come later.
On the heels of our giant elk sighting we rode the beautiful 1A through the wilderness into the Town of Banff where we had dinner at the Maple Leaf restaurant on the Main St. Banff is a really cool little town with lots of things to do. We checked into our hotel and opened the curtains to see this view. What a beautiful view overlooking the Bow River and the Valley of Banff.
We got a good night of sleep and Tuesday morning pointed the GPS North to the Columbia Ice Fields to see the glaciers and the Canadian Rockies. Unfortunately for us, it was a cloudy day and turned down right cold and rainy by the time we reached the Athabasca Glacier where the Banff and Jasper National Parks connect. As you can see by the pictures, it was as cold as it looks. 57 degrees and rain. So it was up to the park building for a couple of hot chocolates and then a quick exit back South to Lake Louise for lunch at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise where the rain seemed to follow. So picture taking wasn't the best, but there were a couple of times the sun peaked through when I could get some good shots.
Lake Louise was a fantastic place to visit. This is just an incredible sight even in cloudy weather. The water is an intense turquoise blue with mountains all around and a beautiful Hotel built right on the shore. This is a must see if you are in the area. Lake Louise is about 40 miles North of Banff just off of the Trans Canada Hwy 1.. About 8 miles South of Lake Louise is Moraine Lake. This is also a great ride and a must see area as well. Be sure and look at the stunning pictures in these areas.
After a couple of hours at and around the Lake Louise area, we were almost thawed out from our ride to the Ice Fields and were on our way back to Banff to take a ride on the Gondola to see Banff from high above the valley. This was a great trip and something that I would also recommend doing. You get a tremendous 360 degree look of the area from the top of Sulphur Mountain. After our trip on the Gondola we took a short ride around the corner to the world famous Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel and golf course. This is a beautiful old place full of history and worth a walk through. You can also take a 7 mile ride around the golf course that is excellent as well. My next recommendation for food would be Guido's, located just above McDonalds. It is a single door entrance located upstairs that you could easily miss, but the food is excellent.
Wednesday morning we did a little more riding around Banff and then were on our way to Calgary to turn South and head back into the States. The ride to, in, and around the Banff National Park was all that I had hoped it would be and is excellent. I would easily do it again and make my way to Jasper and swing back around to Banff. However, if you are going to make this trip, I would take the same route we did up through Idaho and enter from the West side and leave to the West side through British Columbia and back down through Whistler and Vancouver. Leaving to the East through Calgary is a pretty boring flat ride. I will cover that more next week.
As usual, I went picture happy on this trip snapping over 1800 photos. I tried to cut as many as possible, but I still have over 150 for you to view. Some of them are stunning scenery and will surely light that fire for you to make the trip. Next week I will continue with our trip and take us through Calgary, Montana and the Beartooth Pass into Cody, Wyoming.
Click Here for 154 Photos of the ride to Banff.
Map of our Route.
Banff National Park.
Kootenay National Park.
A very good 3 minute video from the Banff/Lake Louise Tourism Department. Click Here.
Banff Information. www.discoverbanff.com
General facts about Banff. http://www.banff.com/facts/index.shtml
Banff Gondola live cam. http://www.banffgondola.com/live_cam.asp
Lake Louise. http://www.lakelouise.com/
Columbia Ice Fields. http://www.columbiaicefield.com/
Jasper National Park. http://www.jaspercanadianrockies.com/
The event calendar is filling up fast for the next 3 months. Take a look at the calendars for August, September and October on www.cyclerides.com .
This Week's Bike Night Events
Chesterís Harley Davidson Biker Night at the Tilted Kilt in Tempe! If you are looking for some fun on a Tuesday night, With 2 outdoor patios and plenty of excitement, This place is a good time! The Tilted Kilt is home to the best Scotch-Irish experience in Arizona, with an award-winning menu, classic pub fare, and signature Kilt items sure to please any palateónot to mention twenty four globe-spanning beers on tap! Biker Night Tuesdays also mean $3 Jack Daniels and half-price appetizers. And, with a Tilted Kilt Biker Night Card, you receive 15% OFF your total bill. So what are you waiting for? Come on down and have a craic with Chesterís Harley-Davidson! The Tilted Kilt is located at 660 W. Warner Rd. in Tempe, AZ. Just 1.5 miles East of I-10 on Warner Rd. 480-592-0102. Click Here for Map.
The Bike Night At The Billet Bar. Voted "BEST BIKER BAR IN PHOENIX" by New Times. There is no better place to watch all the Bikes ride down Scottsdale road than from The Billet Bar Patio. The Billet is ALWAYS packed with bikes Every Day. Stop by and take a look at the New Flamed Booths on the Paradise Patio. The new bars front and rear provide spacious seating, fresh air atmosphere, perfect temperature and courteous staff. The food is amazing and always the latest in cold libations await. You can sit at the back bar and watch your favorite TV on any of the seven big inch televisions. Play pool, listen to the latest music and socialize. The front patio seats over 75 people and is perfect for people watching on Scottsdale Rd. The Billet Bar is located right next to Genesis Custom Cycles on 3752 N. Scottsdale Rd. Check it out this Thursday night and all weekend long. Info: at 480-941-1876. Click Here for the New Billet Bar Page with pictures.
Every Saturday and Sunday
The "Hog Pen" at the Roadhouse Bike Weekend.
Take a ride and stop by the "Hog Pen" at The Roadhouse, the Hottest New motorcycle patio in Cave Creek
where every weekend will be Bike Weekend. Now Featuring
a new Breakfast Buffet from 8am - Noon on Saturday!
Grab a seat at the new Hog Pen bar rail and watch the
bikes ride by. There is plenty of new concrete motorcycle parking right
out front. CCR is located on Cave Creek Rd. in the heart of Cave Creek directly across from Harold's. It is a restaurant
and bar that focuses on a broad menu of good food and has a large bar for socializing with your riding pals for
a good time. It is built to look like something out of the 1800's, but it is brand new. Stop by this weekend
for lunch, dinner or just to have a drink and take a look at the place. I can tell you that their hamburgers and
steak fries are exceptional. Mrs. C. had the swordfish and said it was very good.
Live Music Every Weekend:
Wednesday: Live Music with "Easton Ashe" 9pm - 1:30am
Friday: Live Music with "The Crown Kings" 9pm - 1:30am
Saturday: Live Music with "The Crown Kings" 9pm - 1:30am
Sunday Evening: Live Music with "Walt Richardson" 1-5pm
Click here for the Cave Creek Roadhouse website. 480-575-3098
Sugar Daddy's Blues Biker Sunday Brunch.
Looking for a place to start the day for brunch or to just cool down? Enjoy Sugar Daddy's patio for brunch ordered off of the menu, a $2 Mimosa or a $4 build your own Bloody Mary bar from 10am - 4pm. You will also enjoy Live Music while dining from 10am on the patio.
Our 5,000 sq. ft. temperature controlled patio has six air conditioning units, misters, and plenty of shade. Sugar Daddy's patio, food and entertainment is becoming a regular Sunday stop. If you haven't tried it yet, give them a try. Complimentary coffee is now served. Make Sugar Daddy's Blues your stop on your ride down Scottsdale Rd. for Brunch or Lunch from 10am - 4pm. Or maybe just relax on the patio with your favorite beverage and watch the bikes roll down Scottsdale Rd. Click here to see the awesome pictures and details of Sugar Daddy's located at 3102 N. Scottsdale Rd. between Indian School and Thomas on the West side of the road. Stop by and check it out. A great place to hang out. Plenty of Bike Parking. If you have suggestions, email them at email@example.com . 480-970-6556.
Saturday, August 19th
Hula Harley Day at Superstition Harley-Davidson. Say ALOHA to the boring, tired old days of summer and ride the Superstition wave of savings on August 19th for Hula Harley Day! Superstition Harley-Davidson has everything you need to bring the summer to a close and bring riding season in! Come in for our Summer Clearance Luau- Aug 19th from 10-2pm! Well have hula dancers, scrumptious food, tropical drinks, and live island musical of this to help you feel a little ocean breeze on Harley Island.
And, of course well have huge clearance prices storewide! Any MotorClothes® purchase of $100 or more will get you a pick in our coconut shell game! Pick the right shell and you could receive 10%, 15%, or even 20% off of your entire purchase! Superstition Harley-Davidson Surfs up man! Superstition HD is located at 2910 W. Apache Trail in Apache Junction, AZ. 480-346-0600. Click Here for Map.
Saturday, August 26th
Buddy Stubbs Hogs and Salsa. The new 07's are HOT and so is our Salsa Party! Join us from 11am - 3pm for Delicious Mexican Food while enjoying a Mariachi Band, Pool Tournaments, 50/50 Raffles, The New 2007 Harley-Davidsons on the showroom floor, Contests and Door Prizes. Stay out of the heat and cool off with us inside. Ride by Buddy Stubbs and enjoy the festivities at 13850 N. Cave Creek Rd. in Phoenix, AZ. 602-971-3400.
Saturday, August 26th
Sanderson Ford AMP Tour. Don't miss the 2006 Sanderson Ford AMP Tour presented by Coyote Hill at the new Cardinals Stadium on Saturday, August 26th at 8pm. See the world's top MX and Gravity game riders including Mike Metzger, Nate Adams and Jimmy McNeil will rock the new Cardinals Stadium along with 16 monster trucks featuring Diggers Destruction takes on Big Foot and El Bandito. Visit MonsterTruckLive.com for more show information.
Get up close and personal on the Cardinal Stadium floor with your favorite trucks and riders at the official Pit Party on Saturday, August 26 from 4-7pm. You can also take a ride on one of the Monster Ride trucks. Tickets are FREE in advance at participating sponsor locations and $5 day of the show at the Box Office. Visit AMPLiveEvents.com for complete listing of locations.
Saturday, August 26th
American Freedom Riders Ride To Secure Our Borders.
The American Freedom Riders are bringing attention to the problem of illegal immigration with a big ride scheduled for 8:00AM August 26th, at Childress Auto Mall on Camelback Rd at I-17. With pre-ride speakers Congressman J.D. Hayworth and Representative Russell Pearce they hope for a large turnout help make a statement to other politicians that they want our borders secured - now. The ride will be a lunch run to Jake's Corner and the first 300 riders will receive free American Freedom Rider T-Shirts. The public is also invited to the pre-ride ceremony. Complete details are available on the website: www.americanfreedomriders.com
Stage At Childress Auto Mall
Camelback Rd, 1 Block East Of I-17 Gates Open 7:00 Am,
Free (But Cheap) Continental Breakfast, Speakers TBA,
8:00 Am / Program Begins,
Ride Starts At 9:00 Am Sharp,
Free American Freedom Rider, T-Shirts To First 300 Riders, Group Ride / East on Hwy 60 to Globe, north on Hwy 88/188, along Roosevelt Lake to Jake's Corner for buffet lunch & beverage.
Individual Ride (at your pleasure) up in the pine trees to Sidewinders for lunch and beverages (if you didn't get enough at Jake's) COME RIDE WITH US, WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
August30 - September 3rd
Rally In The Rockies. After 13 years of the rally being held in Ignacio, the Rally has made the decision to move to a new location. This location is called Echo Basin Ranch, just west of Durango. The 2006 Four Corners Rally in the Rockies brings a Rocky Mountain rumbling that no rally can rival! This is the ORIGINAL Thunder in the Rockies Rally. Known for our spectacular mountain riding, we also have the greatest entertainment line up and our "Everyone is Welcome" motto makes us THE annual Labor Day MUST DO rally event! Take some time and check out all the information throughout our site and make plans early - before we sell out - to attend our 2006 party!! Tickets, Tent Camping, and RV Sites are on sale now. Click Here for a listing of events. or 888-901-7701 or firstname.lastname@example.org . http://www.rallyintherockies.com
Here is a good example of why not to jog on a crowded road. I don't know what happened to this guy, but it couldn't have been good. Click Here.
President Bush has a whole highlight reel of bloopers during his 6 years as President. Here is another one. Listen to what he is saying and then watch what happens over his left shoulder. Click Here.
Ok, now for something totally light. Here is a funny commercial. I'll bet you can't guess what it is advertising before you get to the end. You will be surprised. Click Here.