Wednesday, July 17th, 2024 Church Directory
RYAN AGNEW (L) AND BRANDON HINES (R) were packed and ready to embark on their 10,000-mile road trip on their motorcycles starting last Friday. They will end their trip of 35 days or so at Sturgis in early August for the annual Sturgis motorcycle rally. (Patriot Photo by Bill Morgan).
BRANDON HINES AND RYAn AGNEW report back to their followers that they made it to Canada. (Photo retrieved from AlaskaDudes website).

Local motorcyclists set out for Northern Alaska

Imagine riding along the North woods of Minnesota and the Black Hills of the Dakotas with the wind in your hair and the open roads up ahead. Imagine the sun peeking over the Montana Big Horn mountains in the morning or visiting Moraine Lake in Banff National Park. Imagine catching a glimpse of unspoiled countryside as you traverse the Alcan Highway heading north into Canada.

Imagine exploring Denali National Park and its six million acres of interior wilderness in Alaska. 

Now, imagine doing all that on one continuous trip.

That’s what locals Brandon Hines and Ryan Agnew are doing for the next 35 days. Oh, and they are doing it on motorcycles.

Hines and Agnew, next door neighbors in Becker, have long talked about taking an extended motorcycle trip and the thought of touring the upper states of North America, parts of Canada and the great state of Alaska was something they just couldn’t pass up. Weeks, months have churned by and they finally nailed down the dates they were planning on taking their trip — with an end date of early August — just in time for the annual Sturgis Rally in South Dakota.

Why do such a thing?

“Since life’s really short, we just decided we needed to do it. And do it now,” said Brandon.

“I’ve wanted to go to Alaska since I was 16,” said Ryan. “It’s a ride we’ve wanted to do but never got around to it. Well, we’ve gotten around to it.”

Hines and Agnew departed the Becker area last Friday morning and have 35 hotels, motels, inns and campsites on their docket as they negotiate the roads and streets on their trek northwards. The first phase saw them travel all the way to Minot, ND for their first check-in on the trip. From there, they cross over into the Saskatchewan province and stay overnight in a city called Swift Current.

They don’t plan to do much, if any, night driving and they will stick to their timeline yet do as much sightseeing as they possibly can.

Their next four days include stops in Calgary, Banff, Icefield Parkway and the Dawson Creek (not the TV Show) — located in the dry and windy prairie land of the Peace River Country.

Day seven they will stop in Fort Nelson and the next two days they’ll visit Liard River Hot Springs Park, Watson Lake and tour the Alaskan Highway to the border of Canada and Alaska. Without ceasing, they plan to go directly north to Prudhoe Bay where they will find the largest oil field in North America in one of the most northernmost spots in the United States.

At the start of Day 14, they will start trekking southward through the state of Alaska. Ten days of touring such sites as Denali, Fairbanks and Anchorage before they descend down the western coast of Canada to cross back over to the U.S. in Washington by Day 28 (hopefully). Then its a quick jaunt east through Idaho, Montana and Wyoming until they meet up with friends, family (Nicolle and Ashley) and fellow bikers at Sturgis a week later.

Hines (49) and Agnew  (46) have GoPro cameras all over their motorcycles and gear to be sure and capture the sights and sounds of their trip. Agnew has a handheld GPS  tracking device that communicates via satellite for the parts where there won’t be any internet or cellular service. Hines is riding a 2022 Harley Pan America bike while Agnew rides a 2024 BMW R1250 GS Adventure bike.

Six weeks and 10,000 miles later, the boys will be back home to maybe start planning another adventure...

For those interested, you can track the boys’ progress via their website (AlaskaDudes.com) or their Facebook pages (search The Alaska Dudes).