South through British Columbia

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August 2, 2010

It was a nice cool morning when we packed up and headed east on highway 16. We made good time, stopping occasionally to take pictures. In Burns Lake, BC, we stopped for lunch at an A&W. There we met a Harley rider from New York with a small teddy bear strapped to the back of his bike. He had been on the road for a while, and seemed to be in no hurry. We talked for a bit before continuing east on highway 16.

As we rode east, the land flattened out, the mountains disappeared, and the towns got closer together. We were leaving the more sparsely populated areas behind. With it came more traffic enforcement, and a RCMP car headed the opposite direction clocked me during a brief sprint. I pulled over as did Tom, but when he saw the officer wasn't interested in him, he wisely took off in case the officer changed his mind. I stayed on the side of the road while I received my first Canadian speeding ticket.

I didn't see Tom for a while, although he saw me a couple times. We were passing each other by at gas stations. I remember hearing something at one point where he had apparently been filling up, but I missed seeing him. I passed through Prince George and started south on 97. I stopped for gas again at Williams Lake, BC, and while putting the bike up on the centerstand I managed to drop it (rear tire was low again, making it sit too low to easily pop up). While taking a break from lifting the bike back up, I saw Tom pull up to the intersection next to the station. I ran over to the street waving and he saw me and pulled in. After a little catch-up, we got back on the road.

There continued to be forest fires clouding the skies as we traveled south. It was getting darker earlier, and we entered a mountainous area as the sun set. It was around this time that my engine started stumbling again. It had done so briefly a couple times earlier in the day, but had quickly went away. Now it was becoming more persistent, and Tom noticed my marker lights and tail light were out as well. We reached Spences Bridge, BC, where we had planned on parting ways. I was going to head southwest on highway 1, while Tom headed southeast on highway 8. I was wanting to press on, but Tom was concerned about my engine stumbling and my lack of tail light and convinced me to stop for the night, and further talked me into staying at an actual campsite instead of roadside. His concern for my safety overrode my cheapskate tendencies and we set up at Acacia Grove by the river. We stayed up and talked for a while before heading to bed.

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