Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Wills Point, Texas
I loved my Alaska trip. Of course it had its moments of tension and strife, but those were significantly overshadowed by the feeling of triumph and profound personal revelations I carry with me today. I did my best to articulate the sense of accomplishment and emotion on my blog and in the video. Iíve received hundreds of heartwarming personal messages from riders, spouses of riders, and non-riders alike. The story and video seem to resonate with many people on many levels and that makes me happy.
I am not happy about one aspect of the trip. If you are reading this, you are likely aware that I made it as far as Coldfoot Camp inside the Arctic Circle on my way to Deadhorse, but turned back due to reported inclement weather in Prudhoe Bay. I could have stayed a while in Coldfoot and let the weather pass, but I didnít. I turned south and rode home and there is not a day that has passed since the trip that I donít regret it.
So Iím going back the summer of 2013, but this time Iím going all the way up. This trip will be different. I know better what to expect and the roads will be in better condition as there was significant construction in progress when I rode up last year. Another difference in the 2013 trip is that I want to ride it with friends. The Alaskapade was a personal endeavor that I needed to experience alone for many reasons. The only way a road trip like this could be better - is to experience it with friends. Sharing the thrills, the triumphs, the butt burn, the numb hands, and the overall sense of accomplishment with riding buddies has a really strong appeal.
So who wants to go? We have 18 months to get it together. The logistics are relatively simple because we have experiences from me and other riders to call on. The costs can be managed and spread out over the next year and a half. The most difficult part of a trip like this is making the commitment to go - and meaning it. Things like scheduling time off from work, finances, bike preparation, and the dreaded asking the spouse for permission are all minutia once a sincere decision has been made.
A mid June departure will likely yield the best weather for the journey. Riders from different parts of the country can make arrangements to meet up on the road and come together at predetermined locations. To some, seeing other parts of Alaska are more important than the Arctic Circle. Where to go once in Alaska is up to us as groups or as individuals. Itís a big state and we are all big boys. These are logistics that can be sorted out as the plans fall together.
Iím putting another web and blog site together so any rider who wants a platform to express their own reasons for going, their planning, their concerns, or pretty much anything else - will have their own space to do it. I learned that thereís something about making a public commitment that helps a man keep his promises, especially if those promises are to himself. I already have several riders who have privately committed to make the trip. I have no doubt that I will ride the ALCAN with some of them. Iím not sure about others. Things obviously happen. I know as well as anyone that life gets in the way. The best way to put life in its place is to make a commitment to a goal and imagine what it will feel like to realize it.
Imagine the feeling when you cross the border into Canada and become an international rider for the first time. Imagine the goose bumps youíll feel when you see that Welcome to Alaska sign and realize you actually made it happen. Imagine the sensation youíll feel when the Alaskan Oil Pipeline first comes into view. Imagine the sense of accomplishment youíll have when you first see that Arctic Circle monument and reach out and touch it knowing you just realized a triumph that thousands only dare to dream about. Imagine taking a photo of you and your bike with Mount McKinley in the background. Imagine doing all these things with a group of guys - some of whom you may know, others you met only days before, but all of whom you developed a sense of brotherhood with as you shared the anticipation and planning for months prior - and then actually rode the thousands of miles to realize a shared dream. Imagine the photographs and videos youíll have forever to use in your own vain attempt at making others around you who never have (and likely never will) understand the profound sense of achievement that you possess. Allow yourself to imagine these things. Make a promise to yourself and then make it happen.
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Shrug - Scott Wilson
2010 FLTRX "Hester 2.0" - Blue Knights Texas Chapter XLVI