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.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Not-a-Sketch: Dawson City towards Jasper

South of Dawson City, I ran into the deepest loose gravel of the trip. Everywhere there was road work going on, and signs warning of "loose gravel."  The problem with the signs were that you never could tell what they meant.  Was it gravel on the side of the road, at the shoulder, the potential for gravel, some dusting of gravel near a single pothole, or deep gravel like a truck runaway ramp?  Should I hit the brakes hard, because if I don't I'll lose control and slide into a ditch, or should I continue at speed, and make sure I'm in the tracks of other vehicles?  At a gas station a while further south, a few guys rolled in on scraped up bikes with broken mirrors.  They limped into the store and bitched about gravel while sipping coffee.  Nope.  I'm not alone (although I managed to stay upright).

As the beginning of my trip was all about moving from fuel station to fuel station, my second part also included lodging.  I was trying to save a little money by camping, but I would usually ride until late and camping would be more of a chore without any relaxation, so my plan was to be set up in a campsite early enough to be able to lounge around for a while before getting a good night's sleep.

Out of Whitehorse, I followed a campground sign that sent me out about twenty miles to a lodge that no longer had camping spots, but the guy directed me down the road to an area that I could free camp in, because "Nobody goes down there anymore."  So I scouted around and found a wonderful spot, but with Blair Witch elements.

Um...  So at this wonderful spot, there were a couple strange things left around the camp that I can't remember, but the organized junk on the stump was too much for me.  I mean, who would pick up this assortment of trash and take the time to lay it out on a stump?  It's either someone who is a little unbalanced, or a Virgo.  Either way, I decided it was best to move on.

So I continued on through two "campground full," spots, a "campground closed due to bear habitation," and finally (as it was getting cold and late (10:30pm)), a "if we're closed, find a site, and pay in the morning," at a gas station campground.  The next morning, I continued on, through more of the hum-drum magnificent landscape, avoiding running into bears, moose, bison, etc., and made it to Laird Hot Springs and Mosquito Festival.

I didn't know that this was past the trees from my tent.  Maybe that's why there were so many mosquitoes that I had to get packed up to leave with my helmet on (with two mosquitoes inside my closed visor).  I don't have kids, but I decided that if I did, the only time that they'd be allowed to use the "F-word" would be when discussing mosquitoes, then it would be appropriate.

Yep. I rode plenty of curvy roads through pretty scenery, with lot's of animals, meeting cool people.  Yep.  Diverse landscapes, all stunning.  Yep.  The monotony of such epic riding...  I'd be willing to do more of this.