Alcan 5000

Alcan 5000

Rise and grind, it’s the beginning of the Alcan Rally.

Stage one

Ernie and Johnny’s first stage of the Alcan Rally was boring at best but slow at worst. 300 miles of highway were traversed, boredom staved off, and time/stage/distance rules thwarted. Plus, even if your past was checkered and entertaining, you still made it across the border. So far so good. On the Triumph Tiger side, they have returned from their Baja adventures fully recovered and stronger than ever. With the additions of more Alcan-specific equipment, they were primed and ready for the trip. 

Johnny had this to say

We left Quesnel, BC and traveled 480 miles to Hyder, Alaska. The terrain and feel are starting to get “big”.​

Great dirt sections today, and well over 200 miles to traverse.  Bikes are solid, road book is basic and easy to follow. The volunteers doing timing and scoring have been super to work with.A couple of competitors had some issues today. We had to put the 2014 Triumph Tiger 800 XC of Richard Broome in the trailer after a hard get off in the final special section; the bike took a hard shot, and went upside, creating a hydro lock condition. Richard was not injured. Competitors Josh “Little Buddy” Saxe, and Dave “Dizzle” Kawistowski, got the bike running this evening. They’ll be up early to get a better assessment of the machines condition.

Stage 2 - The mid-race hustle meant big things for Team Raiden

big scenery, big speeds, and big adventures.

On day three, everyone left Hyder, Alaska, crossing customs to return to Stewart, British Columbia . A 240 mile pavement cruise was bookended by a 146 mile loop to telegraph creek. Telegraph creek road was a joy – so they shredded it. Another 160 miles of fast gravel and pavement to the hotel and led to logging over 500 miles more to the odometer. End of the day was cold, rainy, and bug splattered, but a killer day on the Tigers nonetheless. Day four and five were more of the same. More wild expanses of nature, high speeds, and excellent progress. However, give four men a Triumph Tiger and some downtime and watch the chaos unfold.

Day four and five were more of the same.

More wild expanses of nature, high speeds, and excellent progress. However, give four men a Triumph Tiger and some downtime and watch the chaos unfold.

Johnny notes how Tigers and lake beds get along

We took some extra time to blast through the forest, take some shots, and enjoy the scenery. After that we headed to fish lake. We arrived at the destination and were maybe 1/4 mile from the shore. After a quick discussion via the Scala riders, we charged to the water, Ernie out in front. His narration went from “all clear” to “STOP, DONT COME DOWN HERE” as he buried “Turkish” to her axles.

It was a bit of a project getting her out

But once again the team rallied as we moved her 3″ – 6″ at a time with one man on each corner, Levin, Sanders, Scheff and Vigil, did the 1 2 3 count and heave ho we were out.

Stage 3 - Rally’s are all about the strong finish.

Team Raiden hit the wilds hard for the last days of the trip, only to allow themselves more time for off-trail shredding.

Day seven had them enter the Arctic Circle by way of Dalton Highway. This route is notorious for rough road conditions and even rougher truckers. Following along the route is the Alaska Pipeline System, the main artery for all that Black Gold. The gates said do not enter, but why come all this way without bending the rules? Persecution be damned, Team Raiden hit the pipeline until they came across a sign that exempted all offroad vehicles under 1500 lbs. The race was on.

Always truant, never without a good story.

Johhny Scheff recounts -

“For the next 6 hours we rocked the highway, jumping off into the pipeline area when it looked promising. We hit some killer two track, water crossings, a couple of jumps, and in general had a blast riding off piste. For me riding the pipeline track was a similar feeling to the first time I rode a stretch of beach in Baja. I felt like I was getting away with something and the conditions were superb. Two of the sweetest nectars that life has to offer in one cocktail. We got into Fairbanks late, missed the evening riders meeting for the 6th straight day, and enjoyed being in the same bed for 2 nights. The gang went to bed on a high looking forward to the ride to Valdez.”

Day nine was a blitz to the end

They left Valdez behind the rally participants as to explore the mountains that the Thompson pass offered up. The total route was to backtrack out the 120 miles of pass that brought us into Valdez then hang a left and head west 200 miles to Anchorage. Compared to the rest of the trip, this was to be an early day to end at 4pm. Glaciers were explored, river crossings forged, disaster averted, journey’s end.

same bikes in a totally different environment.

The second competition-level was completed on the same bikes in a totally different environment. Triumph Tigers pushed to the limit, valuable product feedback gathered, and two rides of a lifetime, it was a stretch well ridden.

In Johnny’s words

“This was a great adventure. We had a few scary moments, but the team always kept our cool and pushed on. Our Icon/Motoworks prepped machines completed every mile of the rally and more as we went “off piste” in search of locations to shoot every day. I can’t say enough about the Manny/Matt//Matt/Mikey/Ernie Icon/Empire crew. These guys are real deal motorcycle folks that are at the top of their game. It was exhausting keeping up with them for 10 days. They get up early, ride hard, are relentless in their pursuit of “the shot” and still make time to goof off and drink beer. We spent 18 days on the road this year together between Baja and Alcan and ended our Alaska trip as pals for life.”

Final tally, and a thanks to all our Partners:

Motoworks Chicago, ICON RAIDEN, Triumph Motorcycles, Alcan 5000, GE Capital, Rally Raid UK, Continental Tires, GPR, and Woodys Wheels.
4 Triumph Tiger 800 XC’s, 17,000 miles, 8 rear tires, and only a clutch and fork seals needed replacing.

With this adventure all wrapped up, it’s only a matter of time until we hit the wilderness again.