Page reproduced from Canadian Biker 7/98

 Page 1

 Beyond the Pavement

By John Cambpell - Photos By Tom Grenon

 Tom Grenon shut off the KLR 650's engine, walked to the edge of the swollen river splashing the Yukon's Canol Heritage Trail and weighed the odds of making a successful crossing. There was still plenty of daylight left , but it was miles to Old Squaw Lodge - the nearest point of human contact - and if anything went wrong, he was on his own in one of the planet's most unforgiving places.

He waded into the water, testing the stony bed for traction while the icy current tugged at his legs, forcing him to lean against the flow.Climbing out of the water, Grenon spent a slow 15 minutes second-guessing himself, before concluding there was really only one choice to make.

He kicked the bike alive, dropped it into first gear and rolled down the bank to the water's edge. For a breif second he hesitated, then ripped open the trottle for the charge. Piece of cake, though Grenon, just as his front wheel barked a mid-stream boulder, and ricocheted the bike into a water-driven wobble. Down went the KLR, loaded with back countrycamping gear and a surprised rider.

"A lot of thoughts were going through my mind right then," says Grenon. There he was, in the middle of a formidable wilderness, with a mountain-fed stream pouring into his saddlebags and over the engine of his prone motorcycle. With a grunt he lifted the bike to knee level and then upright,


   "In some ways the Heritage Trail is more a state of mind than a visible trail. Fifty-year old telephone lines are still intact and old army trucks and construction equipment sit like rusty ghosts in the weeds. But for all intents and purposes the trail is unmarked and the non-vigilant can lose their way."
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