Sketchbook Detour

***Temporary Sketchbook Detour***

I began a solo motorcycle trip from Los Angeles on Friday, June 22, 2012, heading north, as far as I'm having fun. I'll be updating my sketchbook with posts from the road, and not necessarily artwork. I'm too beat by the time I'm in camp or in a cheap motel.

I'll continue with the sketches when I get back in a few weeks.

Yeah right! It's been months! I'll get back to it as I finish up some classes and have more time again. Maybe in another month, like in February, 2013.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Not-a-Sketch-LA to Arctic

I left Stewart, BC, early enough to encounter all sorts of animals on the way up the Cassier highway.  I got to see a couple of moose (mooses, moosi, meece?) and when I pulled off of the road onto a logging road to add liners to my gloves and relieve myself, there were no bears.  While doing my thing, standing at the edge of the clearing, a bear walked out of the bushes, staring and sniffing at me. I finish up and walk back to the bike.  At this point, the bear stands up to get a better view of me, then begins moving towards me.  I threw the gloves on the bike seat and jump on my gloves and away I went, with the bear in unenthusiastic pursuit.

Riding up the Cassier, I passed through different landscapes, weather, and road conditions.  All of it was pretty and required my full attention to avoid hazards like potholes, gravel patches, washouts, and lots of animals.  As I got closer to the Yukon, permanent-looking tent settlements began showing up along the road.  These were "Mushroom Buyers," buying up mushrooms to send to Japan for a tremendous profit.  A woman explained that some of these French-Canadian kids would make $300 a day crawling through the burnt up forest, looking for a certain type of mushroom that grows in this specific environment.  Cool stuff.  Maybe I should have stopped to earn some money.

After the Cassier, I arrived at the Alcan highway, the main road from Canada into Alaska.  At this point, it's wide and straight with one lane going in each direction.  It's a long, uneventful road except for the bears that I saw roaming the vegetation, the looming clouds, and an unfortunate accident resulting in a Harley in a ditch.  Sending positive vibes your way, Harley guy.

I not really very reluctantly give up on camping for the night, and grabbed a room in Rancheria.  This was the view from my bed.