From Texas To Alaska And Back
Recently one of our customers decided to take a two-wheeled trip from his home here in Texas all the way up to Alaska. While he’s probably not the first motorcyclist to complete this journey, it’s a good bet that he is the first person to make it on a Suzuki Burgman 650!
A year and a half ago, I told my wife Lula that I would learn to ride a motorcycle, and then ride to Alaska on the Historic Alaska highway alone.. Despite all the difficulties and never having ridden anything before, not even a bicycle, I am happy and very proud to report!
My route took me through the beautiful prairies of Nebraska and its wheat fields and grasslands. The cornfields of Kansas and the Black Hills of South Dakota where I stopped at the Crazy Horse monument and Mount Rushmore. I rode the Iron Mountain Road or 16A in the black kills of SD with its 17 miles of 314 curves, 14 Switchbacks, 3 pigtails,3 tunnels, 2 splits and 4 presidents.
That was an AWESOME ride in itself. Most everyone that does Sturgis doesn’t do this road even though it’s close to Sturgis. I also did Custer State Park where I rode through a herd of buffaloes (Bison) on the road. This was a little scary and crazy on a Bike. I also stopped at Sturgis Harley-Davidson dealer to take a few photos. From there I took some time to ride Spearfish Canyon Road with it’s waterfalls, and that was awesome. Deadwood South Dakota, where Buffalo Bill was shot in I believe Bar #8 (they number all their bars in Deadwood, SD) was a must stop on my route to Alaska. All this is in the Southwest corner of SD within a few miles of each other. This would be an awesome trip by itself.
From there my route took me through Billings Montana, Calgary, Edmonton Grande Prairie, and on to Dawson Creek where the Alaska highway begins and runs to Delta Junction in Alaska, a distance of 1700 miles.
The Alaska Highway road is a very rough road and there were several long construction areas where I rode though gravel and mud roads. The last part of the construction is 150 miles long and runs from Haines Junction through Destruction Bay to the Alaska Border. This was a very, very rough gravel and mud road and the toughest part of my journey. It was here where the rear tire was pierced by a very sharp piece of gravel. I plugged it and slimed it and managed to get to Fairbanks that same day. 7 to 14 days wait for a new tire I was told by the dealer in Fairbanks. Took my chances and headed South after a day in Fairbanks. Tire finally gave out close to Destruction Bay and had to wait 4 days at Whitehorse, Yukon Territories for a new tire. Very very costly tire! After that I rode back in 6 days to San Antonio, uneventfully.
The most beautiful part of the ride was the wildlife I saw on the road from mountain goats to black and brown bears and even a grizzly bear. I saw elk and moose and beautiful lakes, forests and mountains and glaciers.
Worst comment about my bike ” will it start or do you have to kick it” ” I kick it then it starts” Best comment…” That’s an European racing bike right?.. I can see you know your stuff I said… how fast does it go?… .. 300 miles an hour plus! I said with a straight face”
Not only did I do the Alaska Highway, I also managed to ride 29,000 plus my first year of riding my motorcycle. That is more riding in a motorcycle in one year than anyone else I know, and I rode my bike home the first day I bought it.. I rode it in 15 to 112 degree weather through mountains and plains and desert roads and I learned to appreciate the beauty that this great land of ours and it’s people has to offer.
As an immigrant American Veteran that served during the Viet-Nam war with honor and distinction, and took and oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United Sates and it’s people against all enemies foreign or domestic, and signed a blank check for an amount up to and including my life, I thank all of you in America for making this possible.
God bless all of you and god bless this United States of America! Love U all!
Woods Cycle Country would like to thank Carlos not only for this great story, but also for his Military service.
If you want to reach out to Carlos you can contact him via email at Carlos.Gutz @ gmail.com