Category Canada


Photo: Fred Herzog, 1965

Saw this on The Guardian site. The year my family moved from Toronto to Vancouver.

the Kelowna curse, again

A wide peg is a good peg. A local Kelowna KTM legend recommended Fastways for my bike. They looked good because they’re maybe a cm wider than stock. But as I’ve learned repeatedly, any recommendation from that confident crowd is likely to be less than reliable

I’ve trashed the forward insert cleats by 50% after only 6 weeks. How is that possible? I’ll rotate the inserts, but since when should this even be an issue? Better start a shipping solution on my old pegs now.


Came down from Kelowna via the Duffey. Here’s pretty Lillooet Lake again, today

A year ago with Steph. Check out the melt change in 2 months and 14 days, 40 F degrees difference.

Lots in flower

Aquilegia and lilies in there too


I went out for beer and tacos with CJ and John, the famed “Motomavericks” as they’ve branded themselves. They’re flying back to continue their ride tomorrow, a 4000 kilometre route including a line never ridden before in the Pamir Mountains of Kyrgystan and Tajikistan (although it could be one or the other too, I didn’t ask). They’re being joined by Walter Colebatch, an Englishman and one of the legends of the sport.

Two days ago. They look ready, lol

They’re possibly the boldest ADV duo in the world right now. Their style is to ride off-road (no road or trail) as much as possible, for very long distances, often routes that have never been done before. Broken bones, epics. Hard core in the pub too. From Vancouver on WR250’s.

Somewhere, South America

Also from Vancouver going around are Dan and Sara, who I met for the first time last year, although we’ve been following each other’s rides since 2012. When I think of these guys I think how social they are. They make friends everywhere in the world and are always having a good time with others in their photos. They have truly massive mileages on this long term ride so far. Very cool. He’s on a 800GS, Sara on a 650

Lastly, there’s Kevin from here. He’s just started and is nearing the end of Central America. He’s on a GS with a big load of gear. The record though still goes to Alex from Germany who I met in Belize. Or that Danish guy in Panama. I’ve seen some of Kevin’s videos, he’s a very good rider. Photo below with an ADV girl, Claire, he met recently

So those are your Vancouver representatives going around the world on bikes.


Style matters and no one can ever match the style of the early riding pioneers like Ted Simon or Helge Pedersen. Really great style rides might include never going home, never taking an airplane.

Anyway I happily went home and took airplanes, again. A friend of mine the other day called it moto-tourism.

Anyway, the second plane broke down in a hilarious way, just as the pilot was taxiing for the runway in Manila so we stayed there for 24 hours

They have interesting buses in Manila, but. The Guatemalans would see these buses as Godless wrecks and the Phillipinos would think camionetas de pollos were modded by effeminates. One of those two would have it completely wrong

We had an email from a close friend recently, which turned into a discussion, asking for a really big favour if we ever got to Manila. She asked that I spring, heist, bribe, or do whatever has to be done to free a long-suffering elephant called Mali from the zoo here. Can you believe Townsend at times.

I’ve heard various things about Manila and wished it had been on the route after this short glimpse. We had a very strong first impression.

Anyway, despite the airline screwups, the airport had great wifi at MNL, for Blitz

Then, 42 hours later, home.

My traditional home view, for a reason too long to get into, looking west down Georgia from Granville. I’ve paused and looked down this street from here for more than half a century

Walked across the Burrard Street bridge a couple of times

Was a bit surprised at the huge number of new pot shops that have sprung up everywhere. This one had an incredible selection of food in the fridges. The sales guy gave me a warning about the cupcakes, said whoa, be careful of those

And of course the world’s best cocktails. The bartender dialing it in. Been a very long time since we’ve seen this kind of attention to service. Since we were last in Vancouver actually, nothing similar since. I’ve got a theory about this, but it can wait

Then, too soon, we headed back. This time it was difficult.

Through Narita with the new bike seat, there

To KL with the new bike seat

The longer you’re away from Vancouver the more you appreciate it. I’m extremely grateful for what has turned out to be a much more important walk-about than I anticipated, tough and low times (there have been a few) included. So thanks to however it happened.

143, 28

a long way to go for a new seat


the canal

Back in Los Angeles, Chile, I mentioned that something had come up.

Something good. There was an original plan for my children to meet me in South America before I headed west. Then my middle child got a new job in Ottawa. So we all went there instead.

Lucinda and I rode further down the centre of Chile, weaving our way from near the coast to near the mountains. We headed east at Osorno and crossed the Andes, nearly crashing in a very big way, back into Argentina and San Carlos de Bariloche where I knew there was a trusted hiding place for Lucinda.

Then flew to Buenos Aires. After exploring for a few days, flew through Santiago and Toronto to Ottawa, where it was -20 C, in runners and a thin poly mid-layer.

It was a perfect place and perfect timing to be with my family, in the Capital, to celebrate with a million Canadians as the men and women won Hockey gold.

Now I’m back with Lucinda in Bariloche, planning the long ride down to Ushuaia, the southernmost town in the world.

Back-posts will be filled in below.


Canada Day!

Wishing everyone at home a happy holiday!

Screen Shot 2013-06-24 at 9.25.27 PM