• 72°

David Freeze: With bike troubles behind, it’s on to Alaska

I woke up in the Caribou campground and immediately checked the front tire on my bike. It had been going slack at the end of the day for three days, and I wanted to know it was fixed before I headed back out in the wilderness and away from the only town with bike shops for the last 10 days.

I needed it to be in good shape at least until I get to Anchorage. I had in my mind that the bike shops wouldn’t be open because of July 4th. When I talked with a Canadian, I realized that I was not in America anymore.

So the ride to Whitehorse was slow and hilly Thursday (July 4), but part of it was because Amos stopped to help me. Well meaning, he wanted me to try a bunch of other places, and I did try Canadian Tire. I needed carbon dioxide cartridges to deal with any tire problems, too.

To make it a long story, I ended up at Cadence Cycle and asked Abel if he could help. Abel, a Frenchman, had been in Canada only 10 months but was very personable and talented. In no time, he had checked out the rim and the rest of the tire, deciding to just swap the tube.

I got the CO2 cartridges, and I think he only charged me for parts. It was a great experience.

While downtown, I went sightseeing since I didn’t know when I might be back to this historic city. Lots of old buildings including the depot have been restored. There is a hopping downtown of about 25,000 residents, way more than are in the rest of Yukon. The S.S. Klondike, an ore hauler built in 1937, was the highlight of the historic area.

I went to McDonald’s twice that morning and the bike shop, and because of it, Bank America put a hold on my card. The bank emailed and asked if I approved the charges, so everything was quickly cleared up.

I left town at nearly noon with only 25 miles and went into some repeating major hills. I could see a 40-mile day coming up, which would never do.

Before I left town, I went into a restroom to change into warm-weather clothes. I heard two guys outside, one of them saying the bike was his and it was ready to go. After I came out, I asked them which way to go. The mouthy one said, “I don’t know; I don’t have a bike.”

Finally, I broke out of the hills and was making much better time. A car was coming toward me and the driver was someone who had helped me with directions that morning, Deb Jutta of Whitehorse. Deb told me that there was a store nearer than I had thought and I should be able to make it before dark.

Later in the evening, I was still going and she found me again. Great job!

I kept riding through a rain shower and spotted another grizzly, this time with only a car or truck every five minutes. He just watched and let me go. The rain picked up but I especially wanted to make the campground instead of sleeping with that grizzly. I did make it at 96 miles and then had to throw together my tent in the rain.

My legs had wings after the poor start and repair plus sightseeing.

My cellphone still won’t work, and I can’t get much out of Siri on my iPad. She told me, “I don’t know where you are.” Good thing it wasn’t, “I don’t know who you are.” I have been told that a few times.

The roads on the Alaska Highway have a bunch of different surfaces, and I bet that will continue. Some of them are much faster than others. It was interesting to see those going to the Klondike turn off.

Some good photos are coming up, I think. Keep riding along.

David Freeze is a Salisbury Post contributor who is biking from Nevada to Alaska. He can be reached at runner.david.freeze@gmail.com while on his journey.

Comments

News

Forest abandons lawsuit challenging Cooper executive orders

Education

Salisbury-Rowan NAACP hosts virtual town hall with superintendent

Nation/World

Crews try to tame California wildfire as heat wave arrives

Coronavirus

Nursing home outbreak first reported last week sees first COVID-19 death

Coronavirus

1,400 face masks given out at county’s drive-thru giveaway

Crime

Blotter: August 14

Business

With more than 1,500 patrons in two weeks, High Rock Lake restaurant gets off to hot start

Business

State awards $584,100 grant to Three Rivers Land Trust for farmland preservation in Cabarrus County

Crime

Teen faces laundry list of charges after string of larcenies

Crime

Salisbury man faces charges after trying to retrieve phone from police

Crime

Police: Father hospitalized after being shot in argument with son

Education

RSS teachers adapting classrooms to the pandemic

Education

Shoutouts

Coronavirus

County launches paramedic program for those recovering COVID-19

Education

Cooper directs $95.6 million for students affected by COVID-19

Education

RCCC named school on the rise

Local

Conversations get started on planning for diversity mural, street painting

Education

Rowan-Salisbury Schools welcomes new teachers

Education

Study highlights need to improve food environments around NC’s HBCUs

Coronavirus

County reports new COVID-19 death outside of nursing home

Crime

Man robbed at gunpoint at South Main Street gas station

Business

Embracing the outdoors: downtown restaurants, coffee shops work to expand outdoor seating

Local

Spencer man killed after being knocked into ditch by vehicle on Old Concord Road

Local

Activists talk tear gas ban, renaming police officers, Confederate streets during mock council meeting