Category Archives: Travels

Phoenix, AZ and Training in Las Vegas, NV


Greetings! Summer is here in Las Cruces, NM and the heat is definitely on. 100s all week and into the next. I don’t mind at all as it’s just part of the summer experience.

Speaking of heat, I recently was asked to attend a training in Las Vegas, NV for work. Road trip while getting paid? You bet! Flying was offered as an option, but I chose the longer, driving route. While it was quite warm in Las Cruces, it was dang HOT on this trip. First stop was in Phoenix, AZ (about half way) where I had 5-star accommodations at my buddy’s (Tyson’s) place. From Phoenix, it was an easy 4.5hr drive to Las Vegas. Phoenix was around 110 degrees where ‘Vegas was ONLY 109!

Total drive: 1,400 miles and ~22hrs of windshield time. Here’s the montage of the journey. Enjoy!

Gas stop in Lordsburg, NM


Arrival at Tyson’s place in Phoenix. Even though he was away in Utah at that particular time, he generously allowed me to stay at his new place (purchased last June).


A few photos while exploring the area. (This one is for you, Tyson!)


Inverted pyramid building in central Phoenix.


I snuck into Tyson’s newly renovated garage to grab a few photos. This garage accommodates a whopping five cars, and is a showroom for his complete (sans an SLX) 90s Acura collection. So clean, you can eat off the floor!


Next day I hit the road for ‘Vegas.


Quick stop at Nothing, AZ. My second time here.


Crossing the mighty Colorado River into Nevada!


Arriving in ‘Vegas.


My conference and two night stay was in Caesar’s Palace on the strip.


Checking in…accommodations weren’t bad at all.


A little exploring since I had the evening to myself. No gambling for me, though.


The fountains at Bellagio..


It didn’t take long before I was pooped. Since the conference started early the following morning, I hit the hay while the rest of the Strip hustled and bustled throughout the night.


The following two days of training was here at Caesar’s conference tower.


My last night at Caesar’s, I discovered a TV in the bathroom mirror?


Return trip back home, and one more stop at Tyson’s. I gave his gorgeous 2007 Kinetic Blue 6-spd TL Type-s a quick drive. At 97,000 miles, it felt as though it just left the showroom. Someday, I might just have to grab one of these in black.


Before heading out for Las Cruces, I started a new tradition by having significant folks who have ridden or driven the 6 in the past sign the trunk lid with a silver sharpie. Tyson and James Lee of happily started us off.


Interstate 10 all the way home, and I hit some nice cool rain along the way.


About 30 miles from the New Mexico border, AZ Highway Patrol pulled me over for my window tint being too dark. Luckily I just got a warning, but I’m still puzzled by the stop considering I don’t reside in Arizona!


Back in Las Cruces and thanks to the rain, I was able to turn off the A/C for the first time in months.


That concludes the drive. Thanks for stopping by!

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Enjoying 2017 and A 2nd Year Anniversary


Happy Easter! After a nearly 8 month hiatus, I wanted to check in. Apologies my blog efforts have slowly died down the past year. Things have been good with life, though. Career in full swing, on track and home renovations still coming along. These have been consuming most of my time and therefore I have not put any priority to this blog. I’ve missed sharing many milestones and adventures with you. I certainly needed a holiday weekend like this to keep me away from work, traveling or hammering dry wall so I could sit down and shoot out a much needed post. I’ll get right to it:

Recently, (rather, November 7th, 2016) the 6’s second year anniversary passed by. That means, it’s now the car that I’ve owned for the longest since my 2002 RSX Type-S. Here’s how things have been holding up with the 6 since the last anniversary:

  • Total miles covered in 2016: 37,458 miles
  • Miles on the ODO on the anniversary date: 214,057
  • Total states driven in: 11
  • Provences visited: 3
  • 8 oil changes
  • 0 Breakdowns (in 2016)
  • Longest road trip: Las Cruces, NM to Arctic Circle, AK (~8,900 miles)
  • Maintenance cost: ~1,000

The 6 is running great, but there are a few issues I will be addressing in the coming months. The suspension is feeling a little tired, and the passenger lower control arm is occasionally making some obnoxious moaning noises when cold. Now that it’s getting warmer, I might be able to avoid any pricey repairs until this Fall. My DIY headliner fix didn’t hold that well, and the fabric is starting to sag again. That will need a professional job. During my home renovating escapades, I managed to break one of the back seat fold-down handles while loading stuff and a careless bump with a 2×4 broke a chunk off of my tail light. Also, a careless motorist lightly scuffed my driver’s door after the New Year, but that will be addressed soon with a good exterior detail…which is due this Spring. Currently, the 6 is sitting at 225,804 miles and continues to be my daily driver.


I don’t plan to retire this car anytime soon. Despite being MIA for so long here, I’ve still been on the open road racking up the miles. Here are a few adventures to share:

Ouray, Colorado trip with Dad:


Wilcox, AZ with Tyson and James. We had a blast sliding around the Wilcox Playa (Dry Lake Bed)!



Yup, I’m the idiot who decided to tryout a “figure eight” with the window open. I’m still cleaning sand out!


Another trip with Dad to California. We captured the “terrific twos” along the way!


Serious Dad with the hands at “10 and 2”


Kingston, CA


Grand Canyon, AZ:


Occasionally, I will have an urge to go explore around the Organ Mountains Monument here in Las Cruces after work. It’s a good place to clear the mind.


I replaced the passenger headlight for the THIRD time. Bouncing around the roads to Alaska last summer did a number on the internal wiring harness. I hope this third time ends up being the charm.


Sadly, in February this year, the 6 left me stranded for the first time due to a failed alternator. About a week in the shop for parts and $1,000 later, the OEM replacement got me back on the road. It didn’t take me long to learn Mazda OEM parts are quite expensive and take a while to get here in New Mexico. For this particular job, and the labor (which was the majority of the final bill) involved removing part of the front suspension to access the dang alternator.



That pretty much catches you all up! I don’t have any solid plans for this summer yet, but don’t worry, I will be sharing the journey’s with you. Thanks for stopping by!


2016 Alaska Drive Day 14-16: 200,000 Miles & Final Wrap-up


Guess what? We have a milestone on our hands regarding the 6. She passed 200,000 miles just outside Barstow, California on June 3, 2016! It’s been just under two years of ownership, and I didn’t expect to reach this milestone this soon. Woo-hoo!

Well, we are here to wrap up the longest and one of the most memorable trips I’ve ever been on. I am home, and the Alaska drive is officially completed. I’m amazed that Tyson and I had been able to accomplish this in just over two weeks driving the entire time ourselves. We came pretty darn close to truck driver status there! I want to thank Tyson for helping make it such a smooth and easy trip. My drive time was a little longer than his due to my starting location, and my desire to travel home a different route.

The 6 was sweet the whole way and didn’t miss a beat. The biggest maintenance item was simply keeping a close eye on the oil level and adding as needed. I completed nearly 9,000 miles and I added a total of 4qts of oil. This is nothing new to me. I did have an issue with the air conditioner that’s explained below, but no other maladies to report. Overall, not too shabby. Tyson’s ILX did even better: it sailed through without having its hood opened once or even an oil change! Here’s some trip stats:

  • States Visited: 9
  • Territories Visited: 3
  • Total Miles covered: 8,936 miles
  • Total Hours in the driver’s seat: ~149 hours (!)
  • Total Gallons of Fuel: 299.7 (Includes Canadian conversion to gallons)
  • Total Fuel Cost: $856 (Includes Canadian conversion)
  • Breakdowns: 0
  • Unscheduled Maintenance Stops: 1 (A/C)
  • Flat tires: 0

The drive back since Eugene, OR was not exactly what you’d call leisurely. I had tunnel vision, and pushed a little further each day to get back. Mostly because I’m impatient, and because I’ve been over this route many times in the past.

I left Eugene, OR and traveled south on I-5 and switched over to Hwy 99 in Sacramento. From there, I stopped for the night in Turlock, CA. I originally was going to see my aunt, however she was out of town. As I approached California, the temperatures increased significantly from the crisp Canadian and Alaskan 50s and 60s. I had previously discovered in Seattle that my  A/C was pushing out hot air, but I didn’t want to bother with it then. I just figured I’d  tough it out until I got home. Many people endure the heat without A/C…how hard could it be? Maybe, I’m too spoiled, or maybe just a plain wimp…I couldn’t take it. Opening the windows on the freeway is not only extremely noisy, it just turbocharged hot air into my face which got tiring fast. Sticky black leather seats don’t help much either. So, I bit the bullet and pulled into Yreka, CA’s Auto Zone to pick up an A/C recharge kit. I didn’t know anything about the process, but I was determined to give it a try. Mercifully, it ended up taking 10 minutes or work, and voila! Cold air! I will never again take it for granted.

The next stop from Turlock, CA was my good old faithful town of Flagstaff, AZ. That day was 14 hours long, and I felt it. I did a visit with James Zamora in Socorro, NM, and I arrived at my house Sunday evening. I was very pleased to be back and to take out the luggage for the last time. Before we get to my photo feed below, let me share a video of my drive on Sunset Beach in Oregon from Day 13. This is something I forgot to include in my last post:

Thank you all for coming along on the epic drive. See you next time!

Drive through northern California on I-5.


A lot of sightings of triple duty semis!


Mt. Shasta, a potentially active volcano, viewpoint.


Couldn’t resist capturing this “Woof Waste” station at a rest stop.


Central California’s blooming oleanders in the medians. Sure spices up the scenery!


The hottest observed temperature on the trip in Turlock, CA. The coldest was in British Columbia at 32 degrees Fahrenheit.


A quick A/C recharge that actually worked! Good reviews on A/C Pro paid off.


Slight bypass off the main road on Tehachapi Loop road.


Views from the loop road.


My 200,000 mile milestone!


Capturing the moment with quick walk around.

Getting back into New Mexico.


While in Socorro, NM, I spotted a 6 just like mine for sale. V6 5-spd too!


Home at last! That little MGB in the garage will come out to play on this blog soon.


In closing, Tyson created a montage of our top events. It’s well worth the look!


2016 Alaska Drive Day 12-13: Seattle & Pacific Northwest

Day (12 & 13) Miles:  878 |  Total Trip Miles: 7,186


We are back in the U.S., and today I was able to relax a bit. Even though I’m still a few thousand miles from home, it feels like we are making great progress on getting back. I’m combining two days into one post again for avoiding the risk of boring you.

We left our comfortable Motel 6 accommodations in Cache Creek, BC and headed south for the border! By quickly glancing at the map, I assumed it would be a drive just like the last few days. But, no! To my surprise, there were endless mountain ranges, curvy smooth roads, roaring rivers, tunnels, and clear blue skies. Awww…it was almost orgasmic!


After all this, we made a quick stop in Abbotsford, BC to visit with Pam (or “nsxpam” on Instagram). Yup, that means she has an Acura NSX from 1991, and also a sweet 2006 TSX. A true Honda fan and a great host.


She even packed us some yummy salads for the road. Thanks, Pam!


From Abbotsford, it was only 20 or so minutes to the border crossing into the U.S. CBP officer was very friendly and “gently” recommended that I clean off my plate as their cameras couldn’t read it..haha!


Last night, we spent the night in Seattle where I visited with an aunt and uncle. Tyson met up with some of his family and friends also. My dinner date was in downtown Seattle at Elephant & Castle, and it sure was great to catch up. Stupid me forgot to get a group photo, so these family members will have to remain anonymous until next time.

Today, Tyson and I had a hardy breakfast at the local IHOP before setting off. Only this time, we would set off on different routes, so the remainder of this trip will be just me. (It’s been great, Tyson!!!) Tyson headed east on I-90 towards Idaho and Utah where I went a more Pacific Northwest route down through Oregon and California.

I made a rather odd route through Long Beach, WA; Astoria, OR; Lincoln City, OR; and finally tonight I am in Eugene, OR.  Since I was in this part of the country, I just HAD to give the Washington and Oregon coasts a quick drive-by before settling in on I-5 south. Tomorrow, that’s where I’ll be for at least half of the day and I’ll catch Hwy 99 south in Sacramento, CA. My plans are simple: I’ll stop when I get tired. Thanks for following along…here’s a chronological flow of photos for you all.

Following Tyson in some of those fun British Columbia tunnels!


Last Canadian gas stop


We spotted a rare Mazdaspeed 6…so that’s what my tail lights used to look like?


Coming into Washington!


Downtown Seattle on my way to dinner (and trying to find parking)


Dinner spot


Following day first stop at Long Beach, WA. According to their visitor center, this sign is false…it’s not the world’s longest beach. However, it is the longest DRIVABLE beach in the world…does that count?


Views from the cockpit.


6 playing in the Pacific waters…




Driving into some heavy greenery!


Lunch stop in Astoria, OR at a place called, Ship Inn. Simple salad and clam chowder is exactly what I was craving.


Views of Astoria, OR. I love this little town so much!


Oregon Coast views.


Exposing the 6 to a little rain forest action.


Drift Creek Covered Bridge from 1914 near Otis, OR.


And a closing photo of a rather embarrassing front end. I can’t even…


See you all later!

2016 Alaska Drive Day 11: Cache Creek, British Columbia

Day Miles:  546 |  Total Trip Miles: 6,308

Welcome to our last full day in British Columbia. We moved away from the mountain ranges to more hilly countryside with lush fields of green and rivers. Very pretty all around especially since we had sunshine and blue skies nearly all day. The roads felt familiar as we had nice wide shoulders and smooth pavement all the way. No more frost heaves! Tonight we are in Cache Creek, BC which is not terribly far from the border. This is going to be a really short and simple post as we didn’t stop that much along the way. Here’s a quick summary with photos:

We left our motel in New Hazelton, BC early enough that I had a heck of a time seeing out my bug-splattered windshield. I couldn’t wait for the next stop to get that taken care of. Tyson noticed that the nightly rain showers had taken some of my precious Alaskan mud away…NOOO!!!!! Tyson and I had hoped to preserve the amount of filth on our cars to bring back home as a sort of trophy.


Quick stop at Houston, BC to observe the World’s Largest Fly Rod!


“Let me give ‘er a try!”


Since neither of us bothered with breakfast today, lunch came sooner than later in Vanderhoof, BC. We chose J & S Restaurant for a local taste.

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I had the salad bar and Tyson and I tried a new dish to us…poutine. It’s nothing more than fries with gravy and cheese, but it was dang good! I could definitely get used to this in the States!


We connected with Hwy 97 south in Prince George, BC. Pretty little town here, and I tried by best to capture the scene as you descend from the hill.


A little more road construction.


Gas stop in Quesnel, BC at the Super Save Gas.


We pulled up and were pleasantly surprised to find it was a full service station…just like what you get in Oregon and New Jersey! Here’s my windshield getting a full service with a smile.


Much of the views we had today.


Tomorrow, we shall be in Seattle, WA…back in the lower 48! Thanks for coming along…

2016 Alaska Drive Day 9-10: On the Road Back

Day (9 & 10) Miles:  1,316 |  Total Trip Miles: 5,762


We have begun the drive back. I’m combining days 9 and 10 for there isn’t a lot of content I was able to compile. Day 9, we backtracked to the Yukon Territory and stayed the night in Teslin. The drive was uneventful and still contained a lot of road construction stretches and minor delays. Mercifully, the views kept us occupied for the times we’d have to wait (sometimes 15 minutes) for the pilot vehicle to guide us through.

We made our usual gas stops every two hours or so just for an excuse to take a breather and/or restroom stops. Our route took us back through Kluane National Park and Recreational Area for a few photos. (Featured photo is from here as well)


Lunch was in Haines Junction, YT at this odd looking little joint called Kluane Park Inn. As we sat down, the menu had items from veil to fried rice to burgers and even spaghetti and meatballs. This made us a little suspicious of the food quality. I ordered the “Deluxe Burger” and to my surprise, it and the french fries were top notch!


Watch out, Tyson! Heading out after lunch, a grizzly decided to frolic across the road in front of Tyson’s ILX.


Continuing on to our night’s stop was a steady pace. I was able to set the cruise control, lean back and enjoy the ride to Teslin, YT. We arrived late and slept at the same joint we stayed in on the way up…that’s how much we liked it! I took a walk around in the evening (11pm, actually) for a few photos of the area. The bridge looked grand when illuminated by the setting sun.


Now for today (Day 10), we left the Alaska Highway and joined the Cassiar Highway (37) south towards British Columbia. Before we got on the Cassiar Highway, some snow managed to find its way down!


This is about as cold as I’ve seen on the entire trip. 36 degrees Fahrenheit


Once on Cassiar, it made for a great change in scenery. We were able to enjoy endless Cassiar mountain ranges, green foliage and numerous wild flowers on the roadside. A few curves were also thrown in as a bonus.


Road conditions were generally very good overall, and traffic was light. Rain accompanied the travels today, but I didn’t mind.

There weren’t exactly a plethora of dining choices for lunch. When the time came for the grumbles to emerge in our stomachs, our best choice was a small deli inside of a Petro Canada in Dease Lake, British Columbia. A simple grilled ham and cheese hit the spot…or maybe I was just really hungry?


Quick stop to stretch our legs.



Gas stop in “Bell II”


We probably encountered more wildlife on this route than the entire trip! Between Tyson and I, we spotted a total of 4 bears and two moose! Luckily, all out of harm’s way. Tonight, we are settling down in New Hazelton, British Columbia. I am beat, and will be ready to replenish for the next day! See you then…


2016 Alaska Drive Day 7-8: A Day in Fairbanks and the Arctic Circle

Day 7

Day Miles: ~10

It’s the evening of May 25, 2016 in Fairbanks, and Tyson and I are blogging and filing photos from the trip. We had planned for the next day to just hang out in Fairbanks to catch our breath, and take a break from 10-12 hr days in the car. I happened to notice on our MilePost map that the Arctic Circle runs pretty close to where we were…right on the Dalton Highway which we have already saved for another time.

More digging through Google, and I found that there is an official marker for the Arctic Circle off the Highway. This is when my excitement level creeps up, and I map out how long it would take to get there. Turned out to be 5 hrs (one way), 190 miles over very questionable road conditions. I causally mentioned it to Tyson to test his interest level. We ended up agreeing it would be cool, but fr another time. That was that.

The next day, we took it slow and easy in Fairbanks. We ate a hardy breakfast at the Denny’s next door (which happens to be the Northern most Denny’s!) and we ran a few errands.


We stopped to see a piece of the famous Trans-Alaskan Oil Pipeline System. This thing runs 800 miles and has carried over 17 billion barrels of oil.


Next, I took the 6 into Kendall Mazda/Kia to get the oil changed and a general inspection. I admit, a big part of me just wanted to say I got an oil change in Alaska. 🙂 I left the 6 there and rode with Tyson for a bit. We stopped at the Honda dealer in town to see the accommodations, a restaurant called The Cookie Jar featured on Diners Drive-Ins & Dives, and then headed back to the hotel for more laptop time. Wasn’t much later I got a call from Kendall recommending I “winterize” the 6. Haha! That meant adding a block heater, special low temp coolant and a battery upgrade. I don’t think that will be needed back home, so I declined. Otherwise, the 6 was ready.


That evening, the subject of the Arctic Circle came up again. Tyson revealed he was about 40% convinced to go and spend the extra day. I was at 85%. We kept weighing the pros and cons. There also was a big factor of our cars not making it. The sensible thing to do would be to pass and save for another time. However, we are not sensible. The decision was finally made early the morning of Day 8.

Day 8

Day Miles:  391 |  Total Trip Miles: 4,446

We freaking drove to the Arctic Circle! I am in disbelief we actually did this.



Besides losing a day of travel, our other reason for possibly ditching this idea was our uncertainty of how our cars would handle the road. How many flat tires could we expect? Would rough conditions shake our cars apart? Would there be so much mud we’e risk getting stuck or sliding off? On the tires, Tyson was well prepared with a donut spare, full sized spare and even another tire. I only had a full sized spare. If I got one flat, I’d better pray long and hard that I wouldn’t get another. Both our low-slung sports sedans have their bellys only inches off the ground and the low profile tires don’t do much to cushion big blows. In the end, our hunger for adventure outweighed the risks, and we went for it.We left our hotel room in Fairbanks around 6am, gassed up in Fox, AK (just 8 miles north) and headed for the Dalton Highway!


This highway is pretty remarkable for road trippers. Named after James W. Dalton, this 420 mile road begins at the Elliott Highway, (north of Fairbanks) and ends near the Arctic Ocean at Deadhorse, AK. Historically, it was built as the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline System supply road. It’s been featured on several episodes of Ice Road Truckers and it’s not what you’d call a cruise. When ice and snow aren’t present, you have to face broken pavement, severe frost heaves, massive potholes, mud, sharp rocks and gravel. Numerous cars go wrecked and don’t return home. Even on our drive, we noticed a few past crashes that looked like they weren’t going to be cleaned up anytime soon. 


Entering the Dalton Highway


Numerous occasions, signs instructed to always keep lights on for safety.


The Dalton Highway in all its glory!


First distance sign we came to. 60 miles away! Another 300 and you’ve got yourself Deadhorse.


The first half of the Dalton drive looked like this. We assumed it had been recently graded as the surface was smoother than many of the paved roads we’ve experienced on this trip.


Topping off our tanks in Yukon River Camp. Only one gas pump was available with a price of $5.49/gallon. In this remote location, we didn’t care.


The arctic landscape. From here, the roads did get a little dicey in some areas that required constant attention.


This sign caught me at a specific stressful moment avoiding frost heaves and potholes…my response, “No sh#t, Sherlock!”





Just in time: A tour van pulled up as we were getting ready to depart.


More views for the soul.


On our way back, we stopped at the BLM visitor’s center (more like cabin) and got certificates acknowledging our achievements of getting to the ‘Circle.


Felt like a kid with his first report card to hang on the fridge!



Photo on the way back. We managed to get a few more layers of mud on the cars. Just what we wanted to show that we meant business in Alaska!


Back at the hotel and “Holy Muddy Cars, Batman!” How does this make my detailing buddies feel? 😀


Tomorrow we will be heading back towards the lower 48. Yukon is on our radar for the next night. This will mostly be backtracking, but I will be back with fresh content soon after!

2016 Alaska Drive Day 6: Fairbanks, AK

Day Miles: 701  |  Total Trip Miles: 4,055


We made it! It’s been a long time coming and I’m still pinching myself to make sure this isn’t a dream…we are in Fairbanks, Alaska. Getting here was quite a drive full of (more) beautiful scenery, frost heaved lumpy roads and mud. So much to share, so let’s get to it:

We left Teslin, Yukon fully rested from the comfortable accommodations. It was already raining by the time we left, and it continued to do so for the majority of the morning. Tyson and I just flipped on the wipers, cranked up the tunes and cruised on. We both were determined to get to the Alaska border sooner than later so there was no time to waste. After a pit stop in Whitehorse, YT for gas, the scenery became awe-inspiring. The drive on Hwy 1 took us by the edge of Kluane Lake National Park, and this is where the good stuff started. Massive snow-capped mountains surrounded a gorgeous lake with roaring waves crashing on the shores.


Further up the road, the sun came out to play, and this made for some good photos:



It wasn’t much later that we made it to the Alaska state line. I thanked the 6 with a solid few whacks on the roof for being such a noble steed. The ILX got its praise too for the flawless service. praise with excitement, we soldiered on to Tok, AK where we had a scrumptious lunch at a place called Fast Eddy’s. That fueled us well enough to drive the additional 200 miles to Fairbanks where we are for the night. Our schedule from here on is very flexible, and some planning will be in play. Until then, look for more Alaska fun in the next few days…

6 is getting her good dose of grime.


Quick roadside photo op.


Dirt road section where we got to splash through mud puddles like crazy!


My first grizzly bear sighting.


Lots of road construction today.


Let me in! U.S. Customs…got the passport ready!


Lunch at Fast Eddy’s in Tok, AK


Alaska Highway/Fairbanks sign


Side profile pic while waiting for the pilot car to guide us through construction.


The official end of the Alaska Highway in Delta Junction, AK.


There was also a weathered wooden sign describing the history of the highway:

This highway was constructed during World War II as a military supply route for interior Alaska Military and Airfields in 1942.  7 Army regiments and 42 contractors and public roads administrators working from Delta Junction South and Dawson Creek North completed it when they met at Soldiers’ Summit at Kluane Lake, Yukon Territory in November 1942.  At the peak of construction, 77 contractors employed 15,000 men and 11,000 pieces of road-building equipment.  The total construction cost for 1,422 miles was $115,000,000.

A stop at North Pole (No, I’m not pulling your leg here!) to visit Santa’s house.


Checking in our Super 8 Motel room. It’s about 8:30pm here and look how much light there still is! Sunset is supposed to happen at 11:30pm according to my weather app. Sometime in late June there will be a 24 hour period of full sun. How crazy is that?


That about covers it all. Thanks again for riding along!

2016 Alaska Drive Day 5: Teslin, Yukon

Day Miles: 617 |  Total Trip Miles: 3,354

Hello from the Yukon Territory!


Today was filled with adrenaline…but in a good way. Our route along the Alaska highway took us through some really technical twists and turns that brought big smiles to our faces. The scenery kept getting more and more impressive as our route took us through some of British Columbia’s gorgeous mountain ranges. Words and photos can’t begin to truly describe how beautiful the experience was. We stayed on the Alaska Highway for the entire day and only saw rain a few times here and there.

We left our digs in Pink Mountain early enough to catch the morning dew on our cars before the sun burned it off. After a while on the road, we got our first wildlife sighting…a black bear. After that, we spotted several buffalo and more bears grazing by the road. We also witnessed some forest fire remains which looked fairly fresh.

Tonight we are staying in a nice little cabin-like lodge in the little town of Teslin, Yukon. I am quite pooped, so I’m going to make this post brief. Tomorrow, we just might make Alaska, so don’t miss out!

Driving down Hwy 97


Gas and windshield wash stop at Fort Nelson.


A few road construction stretches never hurt anybody.


Wildlife sighting!


Photos of some of the Rockies we saw today (I’ll let the photos do the talking):



Luncheon at the Northern Rockies Lodge


6 hit 195,000 miles today.


A stop in Watson Lake meant looking at the Sign Post Forest where visitors can add their own signs to the existing 100,000…that’s just what we did!


I added a New Mexico “MAZDA” plate.


And Tyson added an Acura of Tempe plate.


On the road again tomorrow and we will be heading towards these…stay tuned!



2016 Alaska Drive Day 4: Pink Mountain, British Columbia

Day Miles: 499 |  Total Trip Miles: 2,743


Ahhh…feels good to kick off those shoes and settle in for the evening. We called it a day in Pink Mountain, British Columbia around 7pm. This is just off the official Alaska Highway! The days are getting longer as we ascend north, and the sun is still quite high up in the sky even at 7pm. Feels odd, and I bet it will be a challenge to fall asleep at a decent hour. Pink Mountain is a unincorporated area with about 100 people. The lodge and a gas station are about all you’ll find here.

Our day began leaving Edmonton, AB (Alberta) with a quick meet up with Chris Tobias from Nice guy, and the discussions between him and Tyson reminded me that I miss the enthusiast communities I used to be in…Acura, BMW, even Nissan. Mazda’s has yet to grow a bit, but it hasn’t been a disappointing owner’s experience at all.


The rain was still going with a chilly breeze that felt like it blew right through our thin jackets. Tyson and I left Edmonton with every heated option turned on in our cars.

Happily, (rejoice!) the rain and drab skies cleared as we headed west on 43 towards British Columbia.


The cleared weather really made for an enjoyable drive. I managed to find a packet of baby carrots in my snack bag that I had forgotten about. I was popping these like candy the whole day.


We made a lunch stop in Grande Prairie, AB at a popular Canadian chain, Tim Horton’s. From there, we saw the first signs leading us in the direction of Alaska. What an exciting feeling it was. The rest of the photos show the rest of the day.


Entering British Columbia!


Many warnings are posted for moose crossings. This particular reflective yellow silhouette stood out to me.


Just past the town of Dawson Creek is the official start of the Alaska Highway! This highway will lead us to Fairbanks, AK (our end destination).


A few photos at Gundy Road pullout


And the Buffalo Lodge for the night.


So, how’s the 6 doing?

So far, the 6 has been an absolute peach on this trip. The best recorded mileage to date was 33 mpg which I believe involved a heavy tail wind. The ride and general comfort are surprisingly accommodating for these long jaunts. I am amazed that the stock steering and suspension components (nearly all original) is giving a wobble-free ride with clean, straight tracking.

Only two little issues: A persistent oil leak causes me to add about a quart of oil every 1,500 miles. Not a big deal, but it is something I have to keep tabs on (hence why I made sure to pack two 5qt jugs of oil). Last little issue was a burned out passenger light which ended up being a melted ground wire. I performed a little splicing and electrical tape patching which should do the job at least until I get back home. Tires all have even pressure and wear. So, we are all fixed up and read for action tomorrow!