Rattle rattle bang


We woke up to a gorgeous day! I was looking forward to a nice ride now that we were away from the city. Its always good to be back on the road!

After we had some bear bacon and packed up camp, we started the bikes up to warm them up. While Rosie idled away silently Mabel sat there rumbling and clattering like an old diesel tractor. Oh dear. This wasn’t good.


We rode out of camp and turned north. Just over 400 km’s to go. I begged Mabel to make it. Her new engine was being delivered in just a few more days. A nice shiny new one! Come on Mabel. You can do this!


Eventually the rattling quieted off. Mabel was purring along now at 60 km/hr.

10 km’s passed by.

20 km’s passed by.


BANG. Rattle rattle rattle. Mabel shook and vibrated violently. Her engine emmiting squeals and a noise that sounded like some one was banging a bag of chain around inside her. This was bad. REAL bad. She still ran. But she would just stop and cut out. She sounded like she had no oil at all. Even though she did.

I laid her over on her side in the dirt on the side of the highway. My poor Mabel. My little mate. Was this the end? Out here in the middle of nowhere?

I pulled her engine apart to see if there was anything obviously wrong. Anthing that I could do for her. Nothing. Just a whole pile of metal reduced to a paste smeared all over her insides. Oh no.

While she lay there, her eye staring off into the distance, we heard some more bikes coming up from the south. Maybe one of them might be able to tell me what was wrong with Mabel!

6 big adventure bikes came into view. Rode straight past. One rider nodded at us. 6 big adventure bikes rode away. Now maybe it’s just me, but if I saw a bike, or a car, on the side of the road, engine opened up, I would stop. These guys didn’t. I was very disappointed. Ride safe fellas.

Bikers should ALWAYS stop to help other bikers.

We buttoned Mabel back up and I trod on her kick start. She fired into life straight away. Not healthily though. Not at all. Something was broken in there and I could hear it smashing about. I suspected her bottom end was done.


We continued on up the highway. only stopping briefly for lunch. At a speed of 35 km/hr. Anything over this slow crawl would result in a frenzied bashing from within her engine and the whole bike thrashing up and down.

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35 km/hr. For the next 200 km.

We eventually pulled into a placed called Cantwell and i shut Mabel off. Her nasty noisey engine shuddering into silence. I was pretty unhappy. Mabel was miserable and hurting bad. She hated this.

We booked into an RV park for the night. I decided to leave Mabel alone. No more adjustments. No more tinkering. She was tired. She was broken.


We set up camp and cooked up some moose sausages mixed in with some macaroni and cheese! YUM!!!!!! A great dinner!


A crappy day today. Long and slow. Our asses hurt and we both just wanted Mabel to be well again.

Tomorrow we will push for Fairbanks. Lets see if Mabel can do it. I believe in her! How about you?

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6 thoughts on “Rattle rattle bang

  1. John & Desery Gutwein

    Hi Todd and Chantelle,
    We think we saw your bikes at hotel near us (June 5th). We are at River’s Edge RV park – If you have time stop in at sight C14 or we can meet for supper.
    Cheers – John and Desery

    • tncpowell

      Hey guys! Only just saw this! We are having a night of luxury for Chantelles birthday. Will you be around tomorrow? We would love to come say hello!

    • tncpowell

      See you there today I am sure! We are setting up camp there for the next two nights while we await a new engine.

  2. Janette and Dean

    Great to hear more about your travels! Happiest of birthdays Chantelle! Loads of love from Smithers xx
    We believe you can do it Mabel!!

    • tncpowell

      Thanks guys! We were just talking about you!

  3. Jax

    Bear bacon looks suspiciously like Spam

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