Monday, June 20, 2011

Preston Drew Haun

[On June 19, 2011, I spread the bulk of Preston's cremains on Alaska's North Slope.  A small portion got to where he wanted it to earlier in the day.  If I could have spoken, this is what I would have said.]

Preston Drew Haun
June 17, 1981 - August 15, 2010

You were a big man
With a big heart
And you went out in a big way
Only the biggest state could hold the memory of you.

You left a void in so many of  your family and friends
You will live on in their hearts.

I love you, your family loves you, your friends love you.
Good bye

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Mission Accomplished

The son shines from sea to shining sea.

Father's Day - 10 Years

I was just reminded of something I said ten yeas ago.  "On the morning of Father's Day 2001 you were helping Preston move back from Alaska and you wrote somewhere or said in regards to cleaning his apartment "I spent Father's Day morning scubbing Preston's floor but it was OK because he bought me lunch". 

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Well, don't count on me doing that again.

I just spent 11 hours in the saddle (13 hours total) to go a measly 502 miles.  That was a heckuva ride.  The last 240 from Cold Foot was very challenging due to the road conditions and road work.  A guy who drives the Haul Road three times a week said they are sprucing it up because some state officials are coming.  Otherwise, they wouldn't be working on it.

I guess they save money on signs.

Some scenery north of Fairbanks
Really far north
This corner was name by the people driving down the hill
Not nice
Even not nicer.  I was worried I was going to have to take time to remove the fender but by the time I got to Deadhorse it was gone.  I think the same thing happend in 2003 with the R1100GS
Here we are


Joan wants me to have a good breakfast so, at 4 AM, I am at "The Northern Most Denny's In The World" with 47 twenty-something drunks.  The uniform of the day is ho'.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Father's Day

I'll be returning from Deadhorse on Father's day, so I wanted to share this now.

Last year Preston was working in Iowa on Father's Day.  He mailed me a card, which was not unusual.  What was unusual was that he wrote more than "Love, Preston".

Card: Dad, I found this card in the bargain bin because it was slightly damaged...and I couldn't resist showing off my duct-taping skills! (Hey, I learned it all from you).  Happy Father's Day

Preston wrote:  What a way to spend your first year of retirement.  Thank you for being there for me through this difficult year.  Thanks for all the trips to Houston and back and thanks for being so supportive.  Love, Preston

I wish I could have done more.

End of The Highway

On this day, in 1981, one of the greatest things happened.  Preston was born and I am happy to say that when he opened his eyes the first time I was the first thing he saw.

The last 500 miles has been rough but we made it.  Bad roads, cold, rain, and thinking of Preston.
I was just thinking, as I approached Delta Junction, that Preston never traveled the entire Alaska Highway in one trip.  On the way to Anchorage, we turned off at Tok.  On the way back to Austin we started in Delta Junction, but turned off at JCT 37 to go to British Columbia.  Well, he made it all the way today.
I'll begin the final assault tomorrow.

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Running Behind

I seem to be running behind my plans so I may not make SLC when I wanted to.  Oh, well.
Today was short (550 miles) due to a combination of very bad roads mixed with very cold and bad rain.  That was just the last 100 miles, so the rest of the day was pretty good. 

Joan says I can't go anywhere without meeting someone I have a connection with.  In 2003, in Haines Junction, YT, which I just passed through, I met a man that worked with my dad.  In the restaurant tonight, I met an Air Force veteran who knew a man I worked with at DPS.

Some things I saw:

This is where I had to stop and use the gas can.  The gas station I was planning on was closed.  I think fuel management is the most difficult part of riding a motorcycle on The Highway.
Me, riding a motorcycle in Yukon Territory.

100 miles from Alaska
I had to stop to say hello to a fellow Uralista because there are so few of us.  This is Norm from Spokane.  I am sad to say we are on the same mission but with different destinations.

Dawson Creek to Watson Lake

Yesterday I rode through rain most of the way only to find No Vacancy signs everywhere.  I got the last room at the historic Air Force Lodge

While this ride is only to get Preston to where he wanted to go, I understand some people would like to see some scenery.  I'm behind schedule so this may be all I have.

The Alaska Highway

Buffalo.  I had to turn around to take this.  While I was sitting on the bike I realized I hadn't check for bears but I thought they would alert me to a bear.

They didn't know about this guy 500 feet down the road.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Corrrection to Garbled Post

If you saw the garbled post that was in this space, it was due to trying to send via my cell phone.

What I said was:  REF:  Photo, below.  Eight years ago, at about this same time, I was riding in that shoulder at that spot because an on-coming log truck was using my lane to pass a line of cars.

10 Miles Up The Highway

10 Miles Up The Highway

Dawson Creek

I took a different route to Dawson Creek.  Who would have thought Preston would be riding through here?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


At about this same week four years ago, Preston and I were skirting a storm in Nebraska.  Back then I had weather radar on my GPS.  I wish I had that.  We stopped to take some pictures of the strange cloud formations. 
There was no rotating wall cloud anywhere near so I wasn't concerned.  I watched this form this dispate within about five minutes.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Leaving Chicagoland

Leaving Chicagoland

Chicagoland Layover

Arrived in Chicagoland Friday evening and spent two nights and Saturday visiting best friend from high school.  We took a motor-tour of Chicago and ate a SuperDawg for lunch and Chicago Deep-Dish Pizza for dinner.

The Original McDonald's

I wonder if they have a problem with gum under the seats.
Traffic was slightly better that when I came through Friday rush hour.
A Zombie Parade of several hundred "people" stretched for blocks.
The new Blues Mobile at the Blues Brothers Bar.  It's got a cop motor, a 440 cubic inch plant, it's got cop tires, cop suspensions, cop shocks. It's a model made before catalytic converters so it'll run good on regular gas.

Friday, June 10, 2011

I was going to visit my sister in Indianapolis but she moved and didn't leave a fowarding address. Just like that time I went to summer camp.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Huge fire near Miami. When Preston was in college his team wrote a grant proposal that got a new fire truck for the Volente VFD. It was his idea.

Huge Brush Fire

Huge Brush Fire
Let's just say there's a little bit of Preston under the base leg of the 80L flight path at NAS Key West. I think he would like that.

Late Start

Any Iron Butt Association member realizes that, at this rate, I'm not going to break any records.  This isn't like a 50CC, where you have to go from the Atlantic to the Pacific in under fifty hours.
  I wanted to get my witness form done and picture taken then get my picture saved to in case something happens to the camera.  Thanks to Officer Gomez for helping me out.  I pulled up to his car as he was about to leave the station and asked if he a a couple of minutes.  He said, "You want me to witness your mileage?"  I guess it's been done before.
So it's North to Alaska.



Monday, June 6, 2011

Baton Rouge
The last time Preston was here he was pulling a trailer with a 2-ton FEMA truck on a deployment exercise. He sure loved managing emergencies.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

And away we go.

And away we go.  Surprise.  I decided to leave early so I could get to Key West with plenty of time to get witness forms signed and photos taken.  I COULD have done it in two days:  I once rode from Fresno to Austin in two days, but that was on a K100RS and I could still get over 40MPG doing 105MPH.  I'm slowing down in my old age and this bike would probably get 28MPG at that speed.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Warm up ride.

Warm up ride. I got to lead a funeral procession from Austin to the National Cemetary at Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio.  It's not every day that Jimmie Dale Gilmore sings (twice) at a military funeral service at a National Cemetary.  Niel Hancock deserved it.  Happy Trails, Niel.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Getting Ready

Preparations are being made.
Please stand by.
D-Day is June 6.
Current tracking is for testing purposes.