Sunday, July 12, 2009

The drive so far

Wow. Alaska is far away. And endurance driving is hard. But Canada is kinda pretty. Thus the urge to come on my blog and post pictures.

I'm actually online right now because both my debit and credit cards were put on hold today. Impeccable timing. I love the way credit card companies freeze your accounts only at the times it's most inconvenient for you. I guess purchases in Silver City, New Mexico, one day and Jasper, Alberta, just a few short days later may look a little suspicious. I don't know. I do know I was throwing around the last of my cash today on $4/gallon gas while stressing that I was going to be completely broke before I made it to the Yukon. Yeah, driving is way harder than biking. At least cyclists can beg for food.

I drove 800 miles today in 16 nearly nonstop hours (narrow, winding roads and a gutless car make a 50 mph average the best I can do). I did take the time to do a tiny little hike near the icecap this morning. This is near the crux of the Continental Divide, where droplets of water bound for the Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic oceans go their separate ways. The Continental Triangle.


Thunderstorms moved in during the afternoon as I made my way into northern British Columbia, where gray daylight lingered until 11 p.m. I drove right through to dark. I was completely stressed about the storms all afternoon, even as I tried to remind myself that I was inside a car on pavement and they weren't going to hurt me. I'm having a hard time removing myself from "Divide" mode. I still pretty much only think about road conditions and weather, and I respond to fatigue with junk food. I was nearly wiped out in Dawson Creek, so I ate a huge bag of M&Ms and washed it down with coffee. I felt better until Fort Saint John, and then I started craving giant brownie. Luckily, I was mired in credit card problems at that point, so I missed out on the 600 sugar calories that I no longer need.

I listened to every single Tour Divide call-in via old MTBcast episodes today and Friday to pass the long drive. That's probably not helping me reintegrate back into civilization, but many of them were good for laughs (and groans of painful understanding.) Those many hours of variations of "I hurt my (fill in crucial body part)" and "it rained all day" (to which I contributed fully) is probably the reason why my brain isn't working. I forgot my social security number when I was on the phone with my bank today, and had to call my parents to get it. The misadventures in driving continue. I'm hoping to reach Whitehorse tomorrow. After that, it's just a quick jog and a ferry ride south to a place I haven't seen in three months - my home town.

15 comments:

  1. You can't post too many photos, remember us guys that will never get to drive/ride that route and the only way to see it is on your blog!

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  2. Anonymous5:17 AM

    Let's see, you crave M&M and brownies, and you had your car searched at the border......oh boy, and here I thought you were such a sweet innocent young girl. ;-)

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  3. Hey...those two pictures are where I rode (up) to after you dropped me off in the AM....what a day for your hike!...Those wacky Californian cyclists schooled me on the way up...so you should have been riding with us to show them how it's really done...superwoman!

    You are quite the 'Blogasaurus Rex' these days...keep it up!

    KB

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  4. Anonymous7:34 AM

    i second the above comment -- SO happy that you are blogging so much these days, what a treat! your writing is so vibrant.

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  5. Anonymous9:47 AM

    Hey Jill, If you have time, stop in at the White Pass & Yukon Railroad Depot in downtown Skagway and say hi. I have followed your adventures for a couple years and would love to meet you. My name is Suzanne and I work in the ticket office for the railroad (right up the street from the ferry dock).

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  6. Jill - I rode up AF canyon with you and Fatty while you were in Utah. Keep up the posts. Absolutely fascinating!

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  7. You are Jill Homer and you have driven your car from Mexico to Canada!

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  8. It's been great weather here in Juneau. Sunny and in the 70's!

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  9. Wow, you certainly know how to push the limits ...even in a car......I just cant believe how you do it....800 miles.....I have been to Fort St John I have rellies there and I loved it......Your trip brings back memories of my trvels through the states and Canada

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  10. Anonymous10:46 PM

    You will make the deserving someone a great partner some day, because clearly you are all about being in it for the long haul.

    Bless you and your journeys.

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  11. I've had the credit card companies do that to me, too, when travelling out of state. Ironically, that's the only time I ever really use my credit card, so it's incredibly annoying.

    Cool pics. It may be a long drive, but it sure looks like a beautiful one.

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  12. Anonymous3:56 PM

    I enjoyed following your adventure. What an accomplishment! Nice to see Sundial Peak by Lake Blanche in the pics above. I went to the U as well and have fond memories, but now live in Juneau - strange I know. Definately missing that Utah singletrack and the red rock rides of the south. I just put 2 and 2 together and figured out you were the one I would see biking in the winter while I was in the BC skiing. You Rock! Welcome back to Juneau...maybe an article in the Empire is to come?

    Kyle

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  13. Anonymous5:11 PM

    I too have had that happen with my credit card. The charge for a bottle of water and a magazine at Heathrow went through just fine, but the rental car in Nice - not so much.

    My bank sbsequently told me in future to call them before travelling and they can put a note in your file to temporarily suspend their unusual activity fraud alert.

    JAT in Seattle

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  14. Second the call to the bank. I figured that out when they wouldn't let me book a train in Sweden . . . from California.

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  15. Jill - I rode up AF canyon with you and Fatty while you were in Utah. Keep up the posts. Absolutely fascinating!

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