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Archive for July 15th, 2009

Day 219 – 15th July 09

Posted by TravellingStrom on July 15, 2009

Wednesday – North Battleford, Saskatchewan, Canada

Just a few things to clear up that I forgot to mention the past day or so, some for everyone, a few are just sort of reminders for me.

1. I had already entered Canada a month ago, when I went to see 340 up in Toronto. None of the business I had happen to me yesterday at the border crossing happened up there. I am unsure of the questions asked in Toronto, so I don’t know why not, but I have a feeling the question asked of me was “have I ever committed a felony”. Yesterday they asked if I had been arrested, so I may have been unaware DUI was a felony, DUI is not a felony down home, it is a criminal offence, but I may have been confused by the term used.

2. The TomTom Rider GPS bracket is now working fully again? I have a sneaking suspicion it is no longer waterproof 100% as it has only played up in bad rain. This is something I will check when I get a chance. But it is working now so I do not want to break it which may happen if I try and find what is wrong, maybe next time it is faulty I will dismantle it and reseal it with glue or something.

3. When I rode from the port of entry at Futura to Portal, I stopped to take a photo of a rock with a painting on it. This was when I noticed the FI light and CHECK showing on the dashboard, the bike was running and it sounded good. I had noticed early in the day the sound of the fuel pump giving a low pitched growl instead of a high pitched whine, but only for a short period before rectifying itself. I switched the engine off and back on, it fired and I have had no issues since. I did not have the instructions with me to find the dealer error code mode, I will need to do that soon. I hope this is not a bike issue as I am getting further away from dealers.

4. I had heard again from Pacsafe about my new tank bag base, they offered me a new base, they would freight it anywhere or I could have a brand new bag and everything but I would pay for freight. How cool was that? They seem impressed by my travels and like the beating it is taking, I mean testing I am giving it 🙂 I knocked back the new bag, mainly because there is nothing wrong with the one I have, it is a bit faded from salt and sun, but it is entire and of course I modified it with a power source for charging stuff from the bike. So, as I had heard nothing from the people up in Alaska for a shipping address, I found a number of post offices up there and had them send a new base to me at one of them there in Anchorage. It should arrive by the end of July, and I should be up thereabouts around about thenish 🙂 I like Pacsafe 🙂

5. My brand new front tyre, after 1000 miles has developed that annoying wobble again 😦 This is supposed to be a good tyre, but I will not be buying one again over here. I never had this issue back home with these tyres, but I also cannot believe they are of a different construction, the tyre is a standard Metzler Tourance.

OK, on with today’s show – The motel bandwidth was a bit slow, but I was trying to get hold of the chap in Saskatoon, he had invited me up, but there was still no response from him. I packed up and although I was parked in a bit of shelter you can see by the tree tops I was going to be into the wind again 😦

While changing a few US dollars to Canadian, I noticed the sign in the window across the way.

Now I have heard of grass skiing, I have heard of muff diving, but Prairie diving is something new, one day I will find out what that is all about 🙂 The country side was pretty much flat and covered in what looked like Canola, there were heaps of these massive grain silos everywhere, every town no matter how small had at least one, most had heaps, they were huge, probably 30-50 meters tall.

Even taking a wizz took some skill, parking so the bike would not blow over again and then trying not to flash at the oncoming traffic and also staying dry in the gale force wind 🙂

Now I saw this old farm building and it looks to me as if they worked out the direction of the prevailing breeze AFTER building the first building, then corrected the layout and orientation for the next two 🙂

I arrived in Regina around 1.30 and found a snack shop near my initial destination of the Harley dealer. This Mr Sub was a bit like Subway, but nowhere near as good, but it filled the hole 🙂

Now, the reason I came to this shop was because the other day we had made a phone call and they said they had Gerbing heated pant liners in a number of sizes, S,M,L, so I got an unhappy surprise when they said they did not have any Gerbing gear 😦 I mentioned the fact about the phone call on Monday, but even when they looked at the shelf, all they had was leather heated gear for Harley which was useless. Then, thankfully they found a pair of mediums on the shelf, but wait, they are called Harley and there was no Gerbing at all 😦 To cut a long story short, after reading the attached instructions and warranty manual, I noticed in very small writing “manufactured for Harley Davidson by Gerbing” Yahoo, I then made sure they plugged into my controller which they did, then I tried them on. They seemed to fit, maybe a bit loose, but a bird in the hand and all that, even with the added cost due to the Harley badge, I bought them. Now all I need is socks 🙂 Off I go into the headwind which gusted quite a bit and although the highway was OK, the constant wind noise was making the ride a chore, so I stopped on quite a few occasions, just for a rest, but not for long.

This is one of the big loading silos that each small town has, this is the town of Chamberlain, population probably about 100 if that!

Onwards north until I reached Saskatoon. I pulled up at a reasonably large motel and pulled out the laptop and found a free WiFi hotspot, but there was no response still from Rob 😦 A pity really, but after asking at a few motels, I was not paying $100+, so I headed north and west towards the border. There is probably a good reason for the lack of response, but as I had based this whole excursion in meeting up with Rob, I felt a bit let down. If I knew there was going to be no meet, I would have still been in the USA, because I would have gone west through Montana into Glacier National Park, then headed north from there. Oh well, what’s done is done, now to get some distance away from a big town and find a campground or a cheap motel somewhere along the way. The sun is still up and would be for hours yet, but the wind was very fatiguing.

I continued this way for hours, stopping at all the small towns but they were either full or there was nothing. Around 7pm I stopped at an intersection as there was a small town to the left, another chance maybe at a motel, but the sign seemed to be telling me to go right?

Well, I checked left, no motel and followed the sign to the right, I mean what the heck, it was late by now anyway, so who cares eh 🙂 Well, the road deteriorated very quick smart and there seemed to be nothing out this way, but I see power lines, so something must be there.

And there was, it was a sign and only a sign!

So, the only town on the planet that is named after me and it is in the middle of nowhere, so we had something in common then eh!

Now I had another 60kms or so to go to a town called North Battleford. I had decided whatever I can get there, regardless of price, I would take it! I still had some country roads to travel, some good, but the setting sun had its own little problems, called glare, it was now 7.30pm and you can see the sun is still way up there.

So, I finally got into town and hunted around for a room and eventually found one, arriving late is not a good practice! I had some dinner and then found the internet in the room was non-existent so I had to wonder over to the main office and the bar and have a couple of Labatte Blues while checking email and sorting out the morrow. One thing I noticed today when I was looking for a room was an annoying sound from my rear end. Of the bikes rear end I mean, it was a clunking noise while driving off from stationary, but when I pulled in the clutch, it was gone. I had thought chain, but not with the clutch in, so I would have to check that in the morning. Now I was thinking maybe the clutch basket, I hope not. The reason I have not heard it before is because with ear plugs in, music on and the wind howling from the side across the helmet, it was not noticeable. Anyway, it was an early night, I was knackered!

Day 397 miles and 639 km
Trip – 24,906 miles and 40,082 km


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Posted in Around The World, USA Leg | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

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