Coldfoot, Alaska, Verenigde Staten

My first story from Alaska!

11 juli 2014 - Coldfoot, Alaska, Verenigde Staten

Hello everybody,

 

After being in "dark territory" for almost 2 weeks I am now on the internet uploading the blog story.

I am now in Fairbanks at the Mc Donalds where they have free WIFI!

Enjoy!

If you have any question after reading, please let me know and I will respond as soon as possible!

Pictures will be later!

                                                                My first story from the USA!

 

It is the second time I couldn’t get the Internet working for me. It won’t work and get stuck somewhere in the process!

I won’t try again today; too much valuable time will be lost!

 

                                                               The flight

The (my big worrying) flight:

The flight went great; people were very friendly and helpful. Much better then I ever have experienced before!

In Frankfurt however, I had a bad experience there.

The woman at the counter I couldn’t be on the flight due to the lack of the return flight ticket!

Fortunately the lady mentioned briefly that I could if I had a visa.

I was relieved and could show her I had that visa and showed it to her.

Also there was something strange, my flight plan was scheduled to leave Frankfurt at 4:25 PM but I couldn’t find my flight at the sign of leaving airplanes.

The airport is huge! In the end I did find my flight at 13:55.

Luckily I was in time and entered the plane, not fully convinced every baggage item would go in the same airplane!

But the flight was comfortable. I planned to sleep during the flight, but in the end I didn’t.

                                                                Anchorage

In Anchorage customs were very friendly and everything went smoothly!

My bicycle was ready and the bags came in fine! Nothing damaged.

When checked by the security (or customs?) the bicycle box was opened again to for contents of dirt. It was clean.

The rest of the baggage didn’t have to go through the scanner at all!

With a taxi I was brought to the hotel and made an agreement with the taxi driver that he would pick me up again the next morning, ¾ hour before his shift starts.

Remarkable, how friendly everybody was!

 

                                                                 Problems!

The next morning I had a problem!

The man at desk of the hotel did ask for a damage deposit of $100 cash the day before.

He entered the bills in an envelope with my name on it.
The woman at the desk next morning couldn’t find the envelope.

I was in a rush and the taxi driver did have to wait.

In the end the lady did promise to put the money back to the credit card.

I was a little irritated but will have to find out if that promise has been fulfilled!

 

                                                                The rest of the flight

Checking in at the airport was great!

I thought I had to pay $125.

The luggage bags went in for free, and the bicyle I did have to pay $75.

When the lady asked about my trip she thought I didn’ have to pay for the bicycle at all.

She refunded the money to my card!

What a lucky guy I am!

The box was opened again and checked for guns or residues, which weren’t there of course!

The flight was done in a dual Boeing, half cargo and half passengers!

 

                                                                   Prudhoe Bay / Deadhorse

I arrived in Prudhoe Bay with everything complete and in tact and I was very happy!

Before I could find a place to assemble the bicycle there was Rick, he came to bring me to the Dead horse camp hotel.

He organized a large room where I could do the bicycle work and sorting out the luggage.

I am, again, so surprised with so much help!

In the hotel ($450 for two nights and food) I had a little tour.

The locks didn’t work so I had to leave the door unlocked (didn’t like the idea very much!)

it was still early so I used the time to fix my bicycle and sort out my luggage!

The afternoon (even on Sunday!) I was driven to the post office and store.

I bought some DEET spray and had some Coleman Fuel for free! Someone who didn’t need it all left it there, so now I had it for free!

Also both my packages did arrive; one from Alex with my tent, bearbox and bearspray and some very nice presents. Also the package I did sent to myself did arrive, I was very relieved!

 

                                                                     The Arctic Tour

The next morning I did the “Artic Tour” and that was a big success!

We did see several Caribou and later a grizzly did cross the road just in front of the bus!

I could film this with my GoPro!

I also did the challenge to dip in the Artic Ocean completely!

I did the dip together with a motorcyclist who was later also so kind to bring some of the food I brought with me, to Coltfoot!

On the way back the Grizzly was hunting some foxes for their den, The fox was tying to evade the Grizzly away. A very interesting tour

I just received this bag from the waitress! I am super glad!

 

                                                                    Now the days of cycling where there!

 

Those days started early. The alarmclock did wake me at 05:00.

At 07:00 – 07:30 I did start cycling.

Due to the cold and wet I started later.

Clothing had to be worn again and they were soaking wet!

At first it was very uncomfortable but within a minute “the Buffalo jacket” was doing what it promised! You felt dry. And became dryer as you moved around.

This jacket is worth the weight in gold!

 

                                                                     Food

Because I did plan my food badly I didn’t have the oatmeal with me, this was in the bag in Coltfoot!

That is why I did start with hot soup or “stock” and some muesli bars, which worked out fine!

For lunch I did take the same, sometimes with added dates or figs!

In the evening I did have soup and a freeze-dried meal. When you cycled whole day it is a great meal, really!

 

                                                                     The distances:

The first day I succeeded in cycling the planned 100 km

Later these distances where lower due to:

Brutal road condition,

Heavy weight of the load and

The steep degrees of the hills.

I had to push at least 10 times until now (Coltfoot)

 

                                                                     Sleeping:

Mostly I stop at about 4 PM and in bed between 6:30 PM and 8 PM.

Before sleeping I put my sleeping mask on because it is light 24 hours a day!

 

                                                                     Bear alert:

I am keeping my food and other smelling stuff in a bear container. Most food will fit in!

Cooking I will do as far away from the tent as possible. Cooking gear, together with my bear box will be there too.

In the event a bear would be around, he could play with the bear box and loses interest and walks away. The bear can’t be open this container!

The next thing I have with me is a bear bell, this makes a kind of noise and so the bear will move out of the way. This way we won’t have trouble. I won’t surprise the bear!

In the event a bear would be coming to me I could use bear spray to defend myself. Bear spray is a very strong version of pepper spray.

 

 

The moment I am writing this I am in Coltfoot now. This is halfway point, between Prudhoe Bay and Fairbanks.

Internet won’t work for me the system stuck every time I try to continue paying by PayPal or Credit card!

Tonight I am sharing a room with two other recumbent riders: Tom and Rick. Both retired. They started the trip from Prudhoe Bay just 4 days before me. They are a bit slower but enjoying!

 

I will update this blog as soon as I can!

 

 

 

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5 Reacties

  1. Karen:
    12 juli 2014
    Menno - wonderful to hear you are off to a great start! I look forward to reading of your adventures!
  2. Ad Voerman:
    12 juli 2014
    Goed om van je te horen,was erg benieuwd
  3. Dianne Wildgrube:
    12 juli 2014
    Menno,So happy to finally hear from you. We have been quite worried, and Wayne checked in with Tjoan and Marlene. Tjoan sent us the "spot" map so we did see that you were making progress along the way. So happy to know that things are going well for the most part. Be careful and stay safe. We are waiting for our bikes to be maintained at the bike shop. Wayne had a cracked wheel so needs to get a new one made. We plan to continue our ride later next week.
  4. Harry dijkhof:
    12 juli 2014
    Gelukkig eindelijk een bericht fijn dat je eindelijk onderweg bent !!!!!!
  5. AlexBrede:
    12 juli 2014
    Whoopee! You are doing it!