Mission: Get a tan at the Arctic Circle

By Stephen Corke -

General news

 08 December 2008 09:30

ONE MAN, ONE MOTORBIKE, ONE MISSION: TO GET A TAN AT THE ARCTIC CIRCLE

Toronto, Canada. December 2008
It was a ride to remember. Well, it was my first ride as a new biker since I had only had my motorcycle license for less than 3 months.... It took me 8 days from Toronto, Canada to Skagway Alaska, where I stuck around for a couple nights to play some private poker games. I then rode to Whitehorse to get my oil changed at the Harley Dealership.

Because of the snow and crappy weather and the 500 in cash I picked up in the Skagway poker games I decided to live large and get a hotel room for a few nights. The first night at the bar I met a local fellow with an Arctic Motorcycle Tours jacket on and he said for a whiskey and a beer I could have it. So couldn't beat that deal and it fit perfect. Felt a little sorry for the guy, as it had just snowed earlier on in Whitehorse and he had to walk home in his T-shirt. But a deal is a deal.

The next night I wore the jacket to the bar and Heather Ireland from BikerTV came up to me to find out about the Arctic Mortorcycle Tours my jacket was advertising. Partied with them that night and then interviewed them the following morning with my video camera. Kind of crazy how randomness can make people's paths cross. I made it up to the Arctic Circle for the Summer solstice, and it was not an easy trip by any means.

I took the Top of the World Highway across to Dawson City where I entered the weekend Poker Tournament at the Casino. Lost all my cash and was tenting the rest of the trip. The Dempster HWY had a lot of rain and turned it into basically a mud road. I threw down the bike once when my back tire slid out and totalled my side case.

Also, helped fix a popped tire for a guy riding the same bike as mine (V-Strom). He told me he was going to get a patch kit or beer and he decided on beer (so wrong choice) but I got a lot of beer off him for my patch kit. When I finally made it to the Arctic Circle it was 25 degrees Celsius and a perfect day. Got a good sun burn in the speedo and fairly drunk with my whiskey and an empty stomach. Did some skipping while I was there to help pass the time.

Lots of Rv' ers drove slowly by me without getting out, as I think they were scared haha. I promised the girlfriend I would be home on a certain date, and when I was running behind with the tire being changed in Prince Rupert, I had to fly across Canada to make it back in time, or she probably would have left me haha. I'm surprised she stayed with me after being on the road for 5 weeks.

From Prince Rupert I road to the Icefields between Jasper and Banff. All the camp sites were booked solid, and since it was dark I just pulled into a parking lot and set up camp. Little did I know why it was so cold until I woke up and saw a bunch of glaciers around me.

The next day I road to Regina, where I met up with some guys that hooked me up with a ton of free beers after hearing about me hitting a deer. From Regina I drove to Thunder Bay. For the last 2 hours of this riding day it was dark and tons of moose and deer were scene along the road edge, so I tucked in behind an 18 wheeler and stayed close. Figured it was a big animal barricade. A deer I could handle, a moose I would have to ditch the bike.

I figured The 4th day was from Thunder Bay to Toronto, which I thought would be only about 11 hours riding, yet I misjudged the map and it ended up being just shy of 1500 km. My entire body was sore when I finished, yet I met up the girlfriend and friends at the bar for drinks and it was all worth it. Now I have to clean my Bike...

I have over 50 video clips of riding, camping and partying, along with a google map link available at my Arctic Clutch YouTube channel:

http://www.youtube.com/user/ArcticClutchdotcom hope you enjoy!

Visit my website at www.arcticclutch.com

I'm thinking of a winter ride to Mexico now. Figure it's a good spot to get a tan in a speedo haha!