Niko’s Kantina Ride: Sun, finally!

After spending a few nights in Surrey, the sun was out and time was  to ride again.

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The day before we met with Debbie and visited the Deeley exhibition and lunch. Getting things ready made Dane change his mind about departure, so we decide to split and meet in Seattle in a couple of days. That way he has more time to prepare every for the big leave.

We rode together to Horseshoe bay and then part our way. It was a nice sunny day. Kind of warm and perfect for a ride. After we had a slice of pizza I took off.

From then on the day only got better. Highway 99 is just pure awesome. The bends, the scenery, the quality of the pavement. I wish I’ll ride that road again. Possibly on a faster bike.

Past Whistler I took the 12 down to Lytton where I stayed for the night. Found a campground that was bear proof. A freight train passing by every 30 mins. Went back in town to the liquor store, got me a six pack and sat down for a while. 3 mins 35 seconds to pass with 115 wagons. I counted only this one, but I’m sure at night they got longer.

No bears, no rain, good day.

 

Niko’s Kantina ride: A ride with Carla

After a good night sleep and a great breakfast, I was good to go, but not before I took one good look at a beauty that was hanging out in the garage. It’s a ’89 Honda Gb 500 TT in pristine condition. Her name is Carla, and me and Carla went for a spin.

Carla.

What a bike! It’s the kind of bike that makes you feel like a badass. Just want to ride fast and flip off whoever has something against it. Got to love motorcycles because of this. Each bike is like an individual. Like a person you could say, but nicer. Well, this one has something extra special, I sure will remember Carla.

After I sadly had to return it, I left to Royal Roads university to check their gardens, then straight to the ferry to Vancouver to meet Dane and Danielle. Sushi dinner and Niko is a happy boy!

 

Niko’s Kantina Ride: Day 0

All packed, I’m out of here! My flight from Vienna was less than 8 hours away.

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Just before I turn off my pc, I get a message from Dane, we were about to meet in Tofino for beers and fishing, but it turned out that he quit his job and wanted to join. You can’t turn down a request like this, so my solo ride from Vancouver to California was over  before it even started. Happy days!

After a long, sleepless flight to Comox I meet with Conrad, who was to give me a ride to Campbell river to pick up my bike. Met his brother Chris on the way and then we all went to Jims place, where my bike was all ready waiting for me.

And what a bike. I have to say I was a bit nervous, buying a bike across the ocean, never knew the guy before, telling me what to do and not… However, it happened after I placed a wanted add on Horizons Unlimited, so from previous experience I assumed it was a trusted person. Jim and Katherine, I can never thank you enough for your hospitality, help and friendship.

Jim went well out of his way and prepared the bike, which was top notch, a well seasoned Kawi KLR 650, that has rode more than I have seen of this world. He packed the bike with accessories and spares for any situation, from toilet paper to spare tires. All I needed was my personal gear. Kathy took great care that I was properly fed and happy all time.

Both were a well of knowledge about traveling down south, as they did it various times. Murphy, their dog was always there to brighten up the day, and kept an eye that I’ve packed everything.
After 2 nights at their place, it was really hard to leave. But the road was calling …

Cathedral grove.
Cathedral grove.

Took off at noon, direction south, to Victoria to visit Conrad and his wife Joanne. In between, I rode to Cathedral grove and some minor lakes to test my bike, at the time already named BC1. I took some logging roads on the way back to the main road to Nanaimo.

Victoria, beers, BBQ and catching up with Conrad. By 23h my brain quit and I was ready for bed.

 

Niko’s Kantina ride: From Canada with love

The beginning of the adventure. A long way down, from Campbell River to somewhere south. Argentina? Sounds good enough.

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So, if I backtrack a couple of years, 15 to be exact, I remember reading this ride report from Patagonia in “Fuori” motorcycle magazine. My mind, unfathomable,  went into overdrive for years …

Back then it was just a hopeless dream, but as time went by and I’ve learned that life is meant to be lived, this dream would reoccur every now and then. Adventures happened and so one day I met Will, who was the right kind of crazy to do that. So we begin to plan. Dream on, once again.

Today, 30 years old, with a body of a 40 year and a mind of a stoned teenager, I finally got the chance to do it. For that I have to be thankful to my parents, that never questioned my sanity (at least out loud) and well, lets start as we should, from the start.

I have to thank Matej and the whole crew of Adriatic Moto Tours for the enormous support. Without them, this wouldn’t be possible. Of course my parents, for never questioning my sanity out loud, then Matevz, a.k.a. batzajla, for giving me a piece of his blog for me to write my nonsense.

Then a special thanks to Jim, who sold me his baby for this ride, more about that later, and Conrad, for his sympathy and help in the first days.

Ok, lets start the chronicle.

Packing everything I need and more...
Packing everything I need and more…

 

Conrad and Chris
Conrad and Chris

 

Jim and Kat
Jim and Kat

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