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fight the cold current rushing against him. "Then I stood there and did another thinking thing," he says.

Grenon knew better than to try the bike's electric start and was thankful he'd installed an optional kickstart package before he'd left on the trip from his home in Victoria, BC. To his immense relief the bike started and his gear- wrapped in dry bags - was undamaged by the frigid water.

But, even if the bike hadn't started, Grenon, no stranger to wilderness settings, was prepared for the worst. Although he wasn't thrilled with the prospect of a forced march through an empty land where a twisted ankle might be the difference between reaching help and winding up as Grizzly bait - he was prepared for the ordeal. The packs mounted on his dualsport could be fitted on his back and he wore rugged hiking boots. "I was prepared to walk out 50 miles if I had to," says Grenon.

The Yukon is a marvelous place to visit but in that wild country, an unlucky bounce or shoddy preparation can result in a one-way trip. Grenon accepted the odds of solo traveling in a challenging environment and spent months planning the trip.

He poured over road and topography map and consulted with a geologist who had experience in the area. He rode to Kamloops to listen to a Canadian Geographic speaker and contacted tourism bureaus for information about local conditions. Late August, he was advised, is the best time to travel in the Yukon. "The rivers are low, the bugs are gone and the colours are really happening," says Grenon.

And, like Mad Max wandering the Wasteland, Grenon knew he had to worry about fuel. "I called Old Squaw Lodge on a radio phone three weeks before I left and offered them $50 for 5 gallons of gas," he said. The KLR has a 6.1 gallon tank that will take the bike 300 miles, but fording rivers, climbing hills and scrambling around boulders is hard on fuel supply. Grenon was also aware he could get lost on the trail - it's virtually unmaintained - and a fuel cache was essential for the trip because gas stations don't just pop up out of nowhere on the Barrens.

Old Squaw Lodge is the only lodge in the vast northern wilderness between the Selwyn and Mackenzie mountain ranges, which lie between the Yukon and Northwest Territories. Situated on a lake-dotted tundra nearly at the Canol Road Heritage Trail's mid-way point, this exclusive wilderness lodge caters to clients hankering for a northern experience, and serves as a staging area for hikers and back-country sojourners such as Grenon.

The Canol (Canadian Oil) Heritage Trail is a 355 kilometre route that begins at the Northwest Territory town of Norman Wells on the Mackenzie River and is marked by mileposts - Norman Wells is Mile Zero. From there, it winds through the Mackenzie Mountain Range to Macmillan Pass on the Yukon border.

The trail itself is a monument to the Canol Road pipeline which was constructed during the Second World War as a route for shipping oil from Norman Wells to Whitehorse. The route was the

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