7/31/2014 – 54 mi – Hatcher Pass Lodge
Feeling a bit under the weather today. Figures, as we finally have good conditions for riding or doing things outside. Left our comfortable guest quarters to take a short ride up to the very neat Hatcher Pass Lodge.
Our cabin for the night. Both of us require rest today, and hopefully we’ll feel better to actually ride hatcher pass in the morning. The Hatcher Pass Lodge is a really neat place in an amazing setting. We almost passed it up, but I’m glad we didn’t.
8/1/2014 – 69 mi – Hatcher Pass
In the morning we walked up to the Independence Mine, a former gold mine turned museum. While many of the structures are in ruins, some are nicely restored, the visitor center is excellent, and overall it was fun to visit. The heyday for this mine was the 1930s through maybe the early 50s. In some ways we find this amusing that a site and equipment that “young” is now a museum, as we are currently operating hydropower equipment older than that (our oldest turbine still spinning was made in the 1890s, and is making power right now). I bet mining is a lot harder on its equipment than hydro is.
Camped tonight in the backyard of some new friends we just met. I have no idea how or why Kevin and I are this social on this trip (not our usual MO), but it’s a lot of fun. While we were getting groceries in Palmer, no less than three people stopped in the parking lot to talk to us about our trip and about motos in general. It was a little difficult to gear up and actually leave. We were particularly enjoying the conversation with a guy from the area on a grocery run on his moto, and getting good info about where to go next. He’s also on ADV, and ended up extending an invite to camp in his backyard and hang out with him and his wife by the fire. Ok, sounds great, maybe we’ll take him up on that. So on Friday we actually did. We had decided to stay in the area a day longer so I could receive a shipment. My helmet camera broke two weeks ago, and I sent it back under warranty out of Fairbanks. They quickly decided to ship a brand new replacement camera to me. Tracking said it would arrive the next day, so we stayed so I could snag it before we headed south. Thus we ended up with a free evening to hang out with some new moto friends. So we took a chance on a parking lot stranger and showed up with some beer and camped in their back yard. It was great. They’ve got the moto travel sickness as bad as we do. She’s also pretty much my moto hero, as she rode a TW200 up the haul road all the way to Deadhorse. (Short girl riders unite.) I know Kevin and I aren’t the first ADVers to crash there for a night, but I’m not giving any more details because it’s too good to share. I claim them all to myself (and maybe Kevin).