Hyder to Hyder ?

MarkG

Premier Member
#1
I am giving serious thought to making a Hyder AZ to Hyder AK trip and decided a clarification might be necessary. The store in Hyder AZ is closed permanently from the appearance. This begs the question as to how to document the ride. Take a picture of the bike and rally flag along with a GPS time stamp? I use Bubbler along with Spotwalla but it isn't always perfect. Once I take a picture drive to Dateland or Gila Bend depending on whichever route is used and get a fuel receipt within a reasonable period of time afterwards? Wondering how might be the best way to accomplish this little problem.

Hyder AZ 1.jpg
Hyder AZ 2.jpg

Part 2 is wanting some advice about the best way into Canada. I would like to avoid the Seattle area if possible, wondering the pros and cons of using the crossing north of Oroville WA or maybe another border crossing would be easier. If Seattle happens to be the most efficient then I'll be stuck with it. Most likely the trip would be done in the spring or fall to avoid the high desert heat.

The last question is gas station availability in Canada. Are gas stations open 24 hours or do most of them close early in the evening. Some of the comments on the web have implied fuel often due to shortages in some areas. Are US credit cards acceptable or do they prefer cash? Any other gotchas would be nice to know to keep the stress level to a minimum.

Other than the above it looks fairly straight forward just a matter of planning when I want to arrive and how much sleep to keep from getting too tired.
 

kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#2
Dateland is closest gas, Gila Bend would be lodging.

EDIT: Might have a look at the Heaven to Hell rides, since those require satellite tracking (e.g. SPOT) vs. cellphone-based tracking (Bubbler). I'm sure Ira will be along to clarify.
 
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Stephen!

Premier Member
IBA Member
#3
Were it me, I'd pick up I-15 in Las Vegas and ride it all the way to Sweetgrass, MT. Scoot up to Calgary, hang a left through Banff and Jasper, then cruise on into Hyder. This adds about 170 miles to the "shortest" google route but it is all 80mph interstate between Las Vegas and Sweetgrass.

Fuel shouldn't be a problem. When we took that route in '06 we were on a K11LT with only 4.5 gallons usable fuel and had no fuel access problems (during that part of the trip). http://imagesdesavions.com/biketrip/032.html
 

Patrick Ford

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#4
You can cross at hwy 97 north of Oroville, WA. I have been through there many times and never found more than 2-3 vehicles waiting. Head up to Prince George and hang a left on hwy 16. Head west until Kitwanga Junction, Hwy 37. Head north on 37 to hwy 37A just past Meziadin Lake. 37A will take you into Stewart, and the King Edward Hotel. I haven't been there for several years but you should be able to get a receipt at the Sealaska Hotel in Hyder. have fun, wish I was going. :eek:)
 

Texas Tom

Premier Member
#5
Sumas was deserted when we crossed in the middle of the day, went north through Frazier canyon, 100 mile house and clinton. Gas was plentiful until ~1200a after that it was hit and miss. Last gas stop on day 2 was Prince George ~1200A. After that and a bit of sleep, no problemo.
 
#6
MarkG, did you wind up doing this ride?

I didn't see a definitive answer to the starting receipt question. At this point I"m assuming a photo at the Hyder Valley Supply store along with a Spotwalla ping, followed by a fuel receipt at Dateland.

Does anyone have anything more concrete to add?
 

Ira

Staff member
Premier Member
IBR Finisher
IBR Staff
#7
I checked with Mike for Words o' Wisdom[tm]. Here is his reply:

"Well, tracking is best, but we would allow them to be creative here. A photo of the bike in Hyder would be great along with the nearest possible receipt:

Conde's Middle of Nowhere Gas & Groceries, 64503 S Agua Caliente Rd, Dateland, AZ 85333 is 14 miles away.

or

Desert Springs Tilapia, 50621 W Agua Caliente, Dateland, AZ 85333 is open days and just a few miles away.

But somehow they need to show they were in Hyder, I would rather have the bike in a photo there and then the same bike in the photo in Hyder, AK along with the closest possible receipts."

Ira
 

MarkG

Premier Member
#8
Yes I did the ride in June and missed Hyder to Hyder so I will have to settle for the consolation prize the SS2K. My bad, I have been busy enough and have not submitted the paperwork yet. Stayed at a motel and fueled in Gila Bend, stopped at the Hyder store for a couple of pictures, and had another spotwalla waypoint at the Interstate near Dateland. That should pretty much establish that I got started. Everything else went fairly well and stopped 1000 miles later in Ontario OR the first night. Probably should have gone a little farther. My second night I was planning on staying in Prince George.

The second day started out okay but the fickle finger of fate bit me later on. Clearing Canadian customs was easy at Osoyoos, passport and the obligatory questions, I was the only one in line midday. While you look at the map and think turning left on highway 8 at Merritt is a good and might shave off some miles it was a big mistake. Yes it looks shorter but it's scenic and also slower than highway 5 to Kamloops. Second there was a wildfire not too long after I turned onto the highway. Initially it didn't look like much of a delay but the conditions changed rapidly. It took me awhile in unfamiliar territory to figure out the way around and backtrack. That wouldn't have been so bad but north of 70 Mile House the weather turned into heavy rain and to make it worse a lot of slow road construction. Rain in Canada is like standing underneath your bathtub spigot running cold water for several hours.

Sadly I got to Prince George (SS2K) at the same time I was supposed to be leaving for the last leg to Hyder. Way too tired and not stupid enough to push a bad position. I should have gotten to the hotel around 7 or 8pm and left about 2am for the last leg. Instead I pulled into the hotel at 2am exhausted. Some Maverick gas stations are open in Prince George late at night but even in a big city all the others were closed. I slept in since there was no way to complete the Hyder to Hyder on time.

Leaving Prince George for Hyder the weather was pretty good but deteriorated as the day went on. Between the rain and road fog it was pretty slow the last few hours. Clearwater Darla and Erica lights are nice but even they have limitations.

Things I learned. I should have gone straight toward Kamloops from Osoyoos. The main highways are better regardless of anything that looks shorter. With the unexpected delays and bad weather it put me way behind with no way to recover. The Garmin GPS took care of itself there was no need to change it over to metric. The metric speed limits were automatically converted to mph which made things a lot easier. As somewhat expected the pro version of the Bubbler app on my phone wasn't nearly as accurate as it should have been. I bought a Garmin inReach Explorer+ for the trip and it worked really good. Also the Explorer+ gave me the peace of mind of two way text communication if I needed it. Cellphone coverage in the northern areas of Canada are pretty sparse.

I was in Canada for 19 days and had a really good time sightseeing. On the plus side I was able to complete the Border to Border on the way home in less than 36 hours. My tires should have lasted around 12k miles and they were worn out at 6.5k, the Canadian roads are hard on tires. Don't believe the hype about fueling every time you turnaround. Gas stations are available every 150 to 200 miles just keep an eye on the times they are open. To make the best time the thicker the line on the map for the highway the better.
 
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#9
Thank you, Ira and Mark.

Stayed at a motel and fueled in Gila Bend, stopped at the Hyder store for a couple of pictures, and had another spotwalla waypoint at the Interstate near Dateland.
That would be my plan as well. Although Sun Lakes is just two hours away, I'd rather start fresh from as close a spot as I can get.

Rain in Canada is like standing underneath your bathtub spigot running cold water for several hours
Been there, done that. Didn't enjoy it. One thing I learned quickly about Canada is that they don't believe in overpasses so there was nothing to hide under.

Things I learned. I should have gone straight toward Kamloops from Osoyoos. The main highways are better regardless of anything that looks shorter. With the unexpected delays and bad weather it put me way behind with no way to recover.
I like Stephen!'s suggestion of I-15 from Vegas to Sweetwater and then hooking a left from Calgary.
 

kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#10
Um...

"Desert Springs Tilapia, 50621 W Agua Caliente, Dateland, AZ 85333 is open days and just a few miles away."

I'm not certain you'd want to haul live *or* processed fish procured from this location! :eek:

EDIT: The closest two locations for a receipt are 22 miles from Dateland (I-8 exit 67) to Hyder, 18 miles from Sentinel (I-8 exit 87) to Hyder. Conde's is at the Sentinel exit along I-8. The Dateland exit has the Dateland Travel Center at the south side of the Interstate. There *is* a bar/tire shop (Dateland Tireshop / Roberts Roadhouse) which is only 20 miles/minutes away. Google's hours show as 8a - 8p seven days a week...not certain I'd trust it.

EDIT: So, I find the several Hyder to Hyder rides that the MTF did - last one in May, 2016...and confirmed by review of the rides completed listing. I suppose my fear is that...if that building gets taken over by the desert as they seem to do, then this ride would be extinct! :eek:

No, I don't need a business opportunity in the middle of the desert - thanks for asking. :cool: ;)
 
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kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#12
I guess the routing question really becomes which crossing into Canada to use:

https://www.ezbordercrossing.com/list-of-border-crossings/montana/

"The most heavily travelled ports are Sweetgrass, Roosville and Piegan. These three are also major trucking portals between Canada and the U.S. Sweetgrass is by far the most heavily used port and carries almost as much traffic as all the other ports in Montana combined."

There's going to be some 'dwell time' in order to cross - or to take those slower roads to get to those crossings that are lighter used - while on the clock. It seems to me the routing trick really entails finding a good thru route along with a border crossing point that's going to have lodging available...within a couple of hours or so...that's not going to be super busy.
 
#13
I guess the routing question really becomes which crossing into Canada to use:

https://www.ezbordercrossing.com/list-of-border-crossings/montana/

"The most heavily travelled ports are Sweetgrass, Roosville and Piegan. These three are also major trucking portals between Canada and the U.S. Sweetgrass is by far the most heavily used port and carries almost as much traffic as all the other ports in Montana combined."

There's going to be some 'dwell time' in order to cross - or to take those slower roads to get to those crossings that are lighter used - while on the clock. It seems to me the routing trick really entails finding a good thru route along with a border crossing point that's going to have lodging available...within a couple of hours or so...that's not going to be super busy.
I am assuming you do not have Nexus ?
 
#14
I've submitted an application for the NEXUS card earlier this week as I live in Michigan and probably cross the border 5-10 times a year. From everything I've found online it looks like it really speeds the process up considerably. Is this your experience?
 
#15
I've submitted an application for the NEXUS card earlier this week as I live in Michigan and probably cross the border 5-10 times a year. From everything I've found online it looks like it really speeds the process up considerably. Is this your experience?
I use Nexus every week to buy cheap american gas for my truck ..... Border crossings with a Nexus lanes are infinitely faster PLUS when you go to non nexus border crossings that fact that your a Nexus member will still come up on the guards screen showing him that you have already passed some pretty strict scrutiny so lots of times it makes for a faster crossing too.