T – It rained all night. Every time I woke up it was raining. Steady rain that just soaked everything to the core. Luckily we have a damn good tent though. So nothing inside was wet at all. Though I did notice one of the seams has a slight drip drip drip going on.
We ate some brekky and packed up camp slowly. Allowing a heap of time for the tent fly to dry out. It was pretty chilly this morning and by the looks of things a heap of fresh snow blanketed the hills around us. It was very pretty.
C – I was amazed all morning that a fresh covering of snow was on all the mountains around us! It had gotten cold the night before in our camp, but I was still surprised to see fresh snow up on the mountains!
T – We headed off up the road and tackled some roadworks. There are long stretches of bitumen that have been pulled up and after the rain it meant we had long stretches of mud to ride through. Though not slippery mud! I was quite surprised at how sticky and grippy the stuff was really. We had been told how slippery these gravelled sections of road can be. Must be because we are riding Posty bikes. Which can handle anything!
It wasn’t long and we arrived at the border crossing. We knew what to expect this time, as last time both of us had attempted to ride to the US customs office together and the Customs Officer had yelled at me to go back and only one of us could approach the window at a time. So i sat at the border gates while Chantelle rode through and stopped at the window. The Customs lady though said I didn’t have to wait back if we were travelling together and we could both come through. Maybe the last guy was having a bad day?
Once cleared through we headed for a town called Tok around 100 odd km’s away. The scenery was truly what we both though Alaska may look like. Rolling hills and plains stretching off into the distance. Very pretty.
C – We were riding along, feeling quite confused about the distance signs on the road. We were sure we had worked out the distance to Anchorage, but these signs seemed to be saying a completely difference distance. I am ashamed to admit that it took me about half an hour before I shouted through the intercom – its in miles Todd, miles!!!!
T – At Tok we stocked up on some dinner supplies before heading out of town towards a camp site.
Where we were greeted by a fee of $18 per vehicle to pitch our tent for the night in the State run camps. Unsure as to whether we would have to pay $18 each bike we left and started to look for a spot to free camp instead.
C – We were astounded at the prices for the camps. You get nothing but a bit of ground, a communal long drop toilet and some bear proof bins. We were happy to pay the $12 in the Yukon, given the toilets were clean and well stocked, free dry firewood is provided and free potable water. We were both adamant we weren’t paying for a bit of a dirt!!!
T – All along the road were signs warning us of the area being private property. For miles and miles. We figured that we would check down side tracks at rivers and creeks, every time though there was an orange ‘POSTED, Private Property’ sign. We knew there was another camp a ways up the road and figured that maybe the prices away from Tok might be cheaper.
Nope. $20 per vehicle at this one. We felt this was damn steep and there was not much in return for our $20. Figuring that at least in an RV park for $25 we would get showers and running water. So we headed on. There was a small settlement called Midway just a bit further on.
We turned into Midway Services Grocery Store which had a sign for camping and cabins. I enquired as to whether they had tent sites available. “Yes of course” was the reply. And the cost? Totally 100% free. And we could have the cabin for the night if we wanted a tent free night! WOW.
C – When Todd came back to the bikes to explain we could stay here for free, I was pleasantly surprised. But then he said no, in that cabin, not the tent! I was blown away by the kindness of these people. Its so amazing to meet all these wonderful people.
T – The couple that ran this place, Jay and Deb, are absolutely lovely and have some great stories to tell. Jay showed us around and took us out the back to an old yellow school bus that he has converted into a cabin, complete with fireplace and all! He was very proud of his patch of paradise, and we couldn’t blame him. Our little cabin was at the front of the property and Jay kindly lit the gas heater for us, wishing us a goodnight and letting us know there was free coffee put on in the morning at 9.
So, this place on the Tok Cutoff road is free to highway travellers. Jay and Deb wont accept a dime from anyone. Asking just for kindness in return for a nights lodging. If you are coming through this way on your travels, please be sure to stop in and stay a night and chat to these guys. They have some great stories about the Alaskan wildnerness!!! They are just lovely.
Then it was time to snuggle into some Arctic sleeping bags lent to us by Jay and it was lights out.
Maybe we will get to Anchorage tomorrow? I need to order some new rear sprockets so ill be chasing some of that wifi stuff.