Northwest Territories this Spring


Reports and stories from trips, planning of gatherings, questions about how to get there!
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chads920
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Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by chads920 »



Anyone interested in a trip to Inuvik NWT this Spring? I haven't been there and by my map recce there is a paved road from Dawson in. Myself and a buddy live in BC and he was talking about going to Alaska the other day and this morning I woke up saying why not.


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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by jreeverts »

That fires my jets!

Trouble tho is work, living in the NE USA, and needing a couple of seasons to catch up paying for the other trips of late. I'd be up for it maybe next year or the year after.


big question - when exactly does "spring" take effect in the NWT?

Jim
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by Viking »

jreeverts wrote: Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:31 pm
big question - when exactly does "spring" take effect in the NWT?

Jim
Rochester, NY
Spring in Inuvik is the last three days of July and first three of August with summer falling on the two days during monthly changeover.

Actually, with the extended daylight in our northern climes, spring usually comes in Late April to Early May, June is not too bad, July and August are pretty nice in all three territories. With the "new" effects of Global Warming, expect earlier/or later spring thaws, but the best months for travel to places like Inuvik would still be July and August.
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by WingAdmin »

jreeverts wrote: Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:31 pm That fires my jets!

Trouble tho is work, living in the NE USA, and needing a couple of seasons to catch up paying for the other trips of late. I'd be up for it maybe next year or the year after.


big question - when exactly does "spring" take effect in the NWT?

Jim
Rochester, NY
Exactly what I was thinking - "OUR spring, or THEIR spring?" :)

My brother lived and worked up there for many years, as a bush pilot on wheels, skis and floats. He knows pretty much every little wiggle of the MacKenzie river. There are some beautiful places to see there.

My brother on the MacKenzie River:



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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by chads920 »

Talked to a few of the Alaskans that I play golf with here in AZ and their take on "the best time to travel" is the end of June through to the end of July. They say they see lots of bikes most of which are duel sport type. The Demster Hwy is tight bladed gravel surface with its share of pot holes and when wet it can be a challenge. I'm planning on starting the trip the second week in June and getting back in time to start an 8 day ride through BC with the Military Police Relay Ride for visually impaired children which starts the 29th July.
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by Rednaxs60 »

We are heading up to Yukon/Alaska departing 26 June this year and have a four week timeline. Planning already going well as is what we need to take. here's the route we are going to take:


Seems we are travelling when recommended. Welcome to tag along.

Sonya is doing the scheduling. Has a tentative schedule done with places and what is along the route. We have been reading blogs, have the Milepost for trip details. Intend to hotel it but will have camping gear with us just in case.

You went on the Military ride last year. How was it? Will probably be back for the island ride.

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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by jreeverts »

Thanks for the timeline suggestions. I thought May might be a bit early... but that's when I'm accompanying a friend up for a cruise and inland to Denali this year. I'm using it as an "exploratory" hoping to get up further north and on a road trip in the coming year or two. Thrilling to even think on it! :o

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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by chads920 »

Rednaxz60 - I like the route you have chosen and by your comments, you are in good hands (Sonya) ref. planning. I'm going with my Bunkhouse (rolling accommodations), had thought of a tent just for weight considerations but with camping comes 'stuff' and the trailer has carrying capacity (as appreciated on the MPNRR this past summer). I hope to travel the Demster Hwy and that seems to be my focus (getting to Inuvik and back to the pavement) and attempting to incorporate a 'circular' route taking Hwy 97N up and then traveling South to Prince Rupert along Hwy 16 to Prince George and home. The plan after that... well assuming I survive, I will pick up my wife (Cathy) and go back to 100 Mile House for the NW District GWRRA rally then meet up (likely Kamloops) with the MP rally ride and do the BC loop.
The MP rally ride across Canada was great, Cathy and I enjoyed the opportunity to participate with a great and diverse group of riders from across our country ( a number traveled from Ontario to Esquimalt BC dipping their tire in the Pacific Ocean to start the ride). Our National ride leader, Lamont French, did a wonderful job co ordinating all aspects of a ride of this magnitude and the challenges associated with it. Seeing our country, visiting Military establishments and enjoying time spent with many many people who support the MP charity for blind children was gratifying. Cathy and I rode with the 2017 MP ride to Winnipeg (see my article in the May 2018 Wing World mag) as an exercise to determine if we were up to the cross country National relay ride before attempting the 27 day 2018 National ride and after almost 19000 km (rtn trip) and 7 weeks in the saddle, we can say that "if you haven't done it , you should" as IMO, you will never find a ride like this better organized or less expensive anywhere!
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by chads920 »

Jim
Cathy and I rode through your most beautiful state of New York and wished that we had the time available to see more . There are lots of 'roads less traveled' that show off old communities and forests, farm lands and lakes (again not enough time). We traveled North along Lk Erie to cross at "the Falls". Hwy 5 was awsum reminding us of our grape growing area in BC, a great experience and one I'm sure as you live there, you have taken advantage of.
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by bawilde1 »

I had my jeep up to Dawson City a couple summers ago, the plan was to get to Inuvik, the extension to Tuktoyaktuk was finished but not open at that time. Personally, I would only take an enduro capable bike on the Dempster Highway. Rain makes it very muddy and its infamous for puncturing tires and it can be very rough. I had to turn around and head back to Dawson City, because of transmission concerns, there are not emergency services for most of the Dempster. Even the satellite cell I rented was spotty for reception!
Usually around July, they start repairing the paved highway in northern BC and Yukon, lots of gravel sections and some delays. It was very nice trip with my jeep (camping along the way) and it would be an even better trip riding.
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by AZgl1800 »

bawilde1 wrote: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:31 pm I had my jeep up to Dawson City a couple summers ago, the plan was to get to Inuvik, the extension to Tuktoyaktuk was finished but not open at that time. Personally, I would only take an enduro capable bike on the Dempster Highway. Rain makes it very muddy and its infamous for puncturing tires and it can be very rough. I had to turn around and head back to Dawson City, because of transmission concerns, there are not emergency services for most of the Dempster. Even the satellite cell I rented was spotty for reception!
You need to know when a satellite will be over you.... if it is on the horizon, coverage will be very thin, with a lot of noisy static
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by WingAdmin »

AZgl1800 wrote: Fri Mar 01, 2019 7:09 pm
bawilde1 wrote: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:31 pm I had my jeep up to Dawson City a couple summers ago, the plan was to get to Inuvik, the extension to Tuktoyaktuk was finished but not open at that time. Personally, I would only take an enduro capable bike on the Dempster Highway. Rain makes it very muddy and its infamous for puncturing tires and it can be very rough. I had to turn around and head back to Dawson City, because of transmission concerns, there are not emergency services for most of the Dempster. Even the satellite cell I rented was spotty for reception!
You need to know when a satellite will be over you.... if it is on the horizon, coverage will be very thin, with a lot of noisy static
With the Iridium constellation (the satellite constellation that runs the sat phone network) there is always one satellite near, and sometimes two or three. It's rare (especially in the northern hemisphere) that you don't have at least two satellites with very good geometry, and you will NEVER be anywhere that you have only one satellite "on the horizon."

Here's an animation of the Iridium constellation in motion:



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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by Gerryrig »

My wife and I made that ride to Inuvik in 06 on our 1500. The biggest obstacle was the shale on the highway that would puncture tires. The repair shops greatest business was rescuing vehicles with flats and tire repair. The road is bad when wet and dusty when dry. The rock ate though the back of the light on my mud flap and shorted the circuit. Had it hauled (60 mile round trip) to the nearest shop where I could locate and fix the problem. It was an adventure. :( It would be more enjoyable to do the trip as a group. Have fun.
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by WingVetteGSXR »

Don't do it. I made it all the way up to Tuktoyaktuk on a Triumph Tiger 800. Any day it's raining, which was three out of the five days round trip from Dawson City to Tuk and back, it is pure deep slime. Even on the dry days deep gravel and road construction can get very hairy For some odd reason and sheer luck I didn't go down, and I've got some off-road experience. There was tons of accidents, some of them severe. A long trip getting airlifted out of there. I did see one GS1200 make it, but that was a total tail end of the bell curve.
Take a true dual sport or ADV bike and hang on, especially if it's wet.
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by chads920 »

lots of interesting stories of what seems to be an epic adventure on the Demster Hwy. I think I'll re visit my initial plan and opt to visit friends in various Alaska communities that being said I'm still excited by the trip North and looking fwd to seeing other riders along the way.
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Re: Northwest Territories this Spring

Post by WingVetteGSXR »

Smart. Just the trip up to Alaska alone is well worth it. I've done it twice. Go up the Alcan and back on the Cassiar or vice versa. Be sure to do the side trip to Hyder.
Stay at the Sealaska "motel" there, and be sure to visit the bar across the street. Recommend making lodging reservations in advance and watch out for bears on the Cassiar.

Have a great time.


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