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Day 1 - Calgary to Spillimacheen, BC (Steamboat Mtn Chalets) (330 km/205 mi)
This is a great weekend escape - just after
you cross into British Columbia you'll come upon the "Spiral Tunnels". This is a series of winding tunnels to get the trains over
the Kicking Horse Pass. They have a great place to stop, read about the history of it's construction and if your lucky, catch
a train traversing the pass.
A couple of miles beyond the Spiral Tunnels is the Yoho Valley turn off to Takakkaw Falls (watch
for signs). The drive is about 15 km/10 mi and includes a drastic 180' switchback. The falls are awesome - over 250 m/834 ft
and there is a path to take you right to the base of the falls.
Just beyond Field, BC is another turn off to Emerald lake. Shortly
after you take the turn off to Emerald lake you will pass by Natural Bridge - make sure you stop and explore the unique rock formations
amongst the rushing water of the Kicking Horse River. At the end of this road is Emerald Lake and the Emerald Lake Lodge.
Back on Hwy
1 it's 58 km/36 mi to Golden and another 64 km/40 mi on hwy 95 to Spillimacheen and Steamboat Mtn Chalets. (Make sure you book in
advance as they have a limited number of cabins.) The cabins are rustic, super clean and have a charm all to themselves. They offer
propane grills on the deck and even a softsided hot tub to soak after a hard day of riding and Barb (owner/manager) goes out of her
way to accomodate her guests.
Day 2 - Spillimacheen, BC (Steamboat Mtn Chalets) to Calgary (300 km/185 mi)
From Steamboat Mountain Chalets head south on
hwy 95 to Radium where you pick up hwy 93 heading east. Radium has an abundance of restaurants if you haven't had breakfast and make
sure you top off your fuel as the next fuel station is more than 130 km/80 mi. Get your camera or video recorder ready because
a couple of km's out of Radium you pass through an amazing gorge carved through the rock as you start ascending up
into the mountains of Kootenay National Park (Video).
The next 100 km/60 mi takes you through the mountains of Kootenay National park
following the Kootenay and Vermilion rivers. There are numerous places to stop and for photo shoots - one of my favorites beingMarble Canyon. Crossing over Vermilion Pass you hit the Trans Canada Highway (Hwy 1) where you go south back past Banff and east into
Calgary. Instead of taking Hwy 1 you can cross over and pick up Hwy 1A (Bow Valley Pkwy) to go south. This is a nice leisurely
60 km/hr (38 mi/hr) 2 lane road that weaves through forested mountains and comes out at Banff. You can also pick up Hwy 1A again at
Canmore and take it through the Stoney Indian reservation, past Ghost Lake and onto Cochrane - another leisurely 2 lane road that
keeps you off the 4 lane conjested Trans-Canada Hwy.
Takakkaw Falls, Natural Bridge, Natural Bridge
Hwy 93 - Radium to Lake Louise
Hwy 1A Cochrane to Canmore
1. Fluids. Make sure all your oils and fluids are topped off with the correct fluid.
2. Battery. Make sure both the connections
are tight. If your motorcycle battery is not a sealed type, make sure the cells are full of fluid. Be sure to check for cracks and
leaks and that the vent hose is not plugged.
3. Drive belt or chain. If you have a chain, make sure itís properly lubed and has
the correct tension.
4. Tires. Make sure your tire pressure is correct, that there is proper tread depth, and that there is no
weather checking on the sidewalls.
5. Filters. Check your air filter, especially if it hasnít been cleaned or replaced lately.
A dirty air filter damages your engine and can greatly affect performance and make your ride not nearly as enjoyable as you want it
6. Cables. Make sure all cables are adjusted correctly and that they have been properly lubed. Nothing will leave you sitting on the
side of the road faster than a broken throttle cable.
7. Lights and turn signals. This seems obvious, but check to make sure
all lights are operational, including the hi-lo beam, turn signals, tail light / brake light, license plate light, and even your speedo
8. Brake systems. Make sure that there are no leaks or cracks in your brake lines. Be sure to check your brake
pads because running thin pads can ruin your rotors and will end up costing you a lot more than what a new set of pads would have
9. Nuts and bolts. Complete a visual/physical check of hardware throughout your bike.
10. Spokes. If your bike
has spokes, be sure to do a quick check to make sure your spokes are tight. As you do, adjust according to the manual, and if youíre
10 Thing to check before you go for a ride.
Courtesy of JPCycles