09 June 2012

Side Notes 3

Stickers: I have quite a collection of stickers started on all my luggage on the bike. I figure if I ever sell the bike, the luggage is so banged up, it might actually look better this way, so I am indulging. I have seen a few other motorbikes on the trip with stickers. It is typically just one or two, artfully placed. In contrast, my panniers and tail case look like a 13 year old girl's notebook. Whatever, it's how I like it!

Pit Toilets: I know, everyone likes a good pit toilet, right? Well, here's the deal. Most of them have signs to close toilet lid and door when one is finished. Most people seem incapable of doing these things, yet are totally grossed out by the toilets. Okay, no one really wants to touch one, but they work on a very simple venting system that will draw fresh air in, across all the refuse, and fit up into the building if the seat is left up. Well, that smells nice! Thanks. If it is closed, the turbines on the top of the vent tube can work properly and vent it to the outside, keeping it reasonable inside. The other thing is the door. How hard is it to close the door, and latch the outside if one is provided? Oh right it's not! And quite frankly, I hate walking up to ones with open doors, wondering if there will be a swarm of mosquitos, a raccoon, or in this area a GRIZZLY, waiting inside for me. So please, for all our sakes, CLOSE THE LID AND THE DOOR!

Poo: Keeping on my Mom's favorite thing (uh, no, not really), let's talk about poo. It has become quite important to us and our survival while out in the wilderness. Being able to determine what poo belongs to what critter (and whether it is fresh or not) helps us keep an eye out. The wolf and grizzly bear are the least of the worries. Apparently you treat the former as a bad dog, and just talk to the grizzly. Even if the grizzly's charge turns into an attack, they just want to play with you. The black bears are the ones to watch out for, as they want to kill you. So, when a guy driving by us the other night mentioned he saw a new bear sign that day that hadn't been there before (and I thought, "oh, a bear must have been spotted and a ranger put up a sign," Josh asked what kind of sign and we were told poo. Right. Glad I kept my mouth shut! We saw it later, and not only was it fresh, but it was about 50 yards from our campsite. We were extra cautious that night. We've also kept an eye on moose poo, cuz they are super protective of their new babies right now and will trample you to death. That doesn't sound fun to me. Tonight we are going to experiment with moose poo as fire pellets.

Mileage: As of leaving Talkeetna on Thursday, June 7, we have put more than 5000 miles on for this trip. Pretty sure that is more motorcycle miles than I have done in my whole motorcycling life. The roads tend to have little traffic, with the majority of it being big trucks and locals. However, the further south we got, we ran into more and more tour/cruise company buses, and a hugely increasing number of RVs. For the most part, people are good drivers up here, with the locals wanting to drive faster than everyone else, and the RVs driving slower. I will say that each time we have been annoyed with someone driving a car, it has had Texas plates. And there are a few RV drivers who think they own the road and will pull out in front of us on a highway, forcing us not to slam on the breaks, but decrease our speed very quickly. That is getting old pretty quickly. We aren't in the southern portion very long though, so we'll see what the next few days bring.


  1. Interesting side notes. Especially using the poo for fire starters. Fragrant, I'm sure.
    Mom :)

  2. You guys are studs. I know a lot of "bikers", some tough, some tougher, but none of them would have weathered what you guys have so far.

    Hurry home, if only so we can hear more stories! Safe travels,