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August 13th, 2011 - The End of the Road By GP

After 17,068 kilometers (10,606 miles) I have made it from Toronto to the most easterly point in North America, Cape Spear Newfoundland  and to the most western point accessible by road, The Homer Spit in Alaska.

The drive to Homer was a surreal. Snow covered mountains, rivers, valleys and more wildlife made the twisty roads that often hugged the ocean a surreal drive. So many photo opportunities. Surprisingly I kept encountering the same people each time I stopped for a photo. Stopping at the sign for Homer I encountered a couple wearing Harley Davidson T-shirts. A conversation soon started and I was informed about the “Salty Dawg Saloon” on the Homer Spit. It seemed like a good place to celebrate my accomplishment. Before stopping for a glass of Glenlivet I rode right to the end of the road, where I was stopped only by the “Lands’ End Restaurant”.

The Salty Dawg Saloon has American one dollar bills signed by customers from all over the world tacked to every inch of its walls. Toasting with a drink and tacking my dollar bill on the wall Greg’s Adventure earned its place in this iconic bar. I kissed a cod in Newfoundland and tacked a $1 to the wall of a smelly bar in Homer, each end of North America has it tradition.

Not only is Homer the end of the road, it is also the Halibut fishing capital of the world. The shopping strip was made up of fishing adventure outfitters and fish cleaning stations, with the occasional gift shop or two (ok more than 2 shops but they all smelled of fish).  The spilt was a place well worth exploring.

Deciding to spend the night in Homer I pitched my tent on the beach, only to have the wind blow it away. This is how I met Jane, a retired librarian in her 60’s from New York State. She suggested I tether my tent to her van. Jane is by far, the most interesting person I have met since heading west. Travelling alone in her van, with no fixed destination, no schedule, we were like kindred spirits, but her travel stories were far more interesting than mine.  Check out her blog at www.datatamata.com .  With tent securely tethered, the ocean smashing against the beach I crawled into my sleeping bag after the sun finally went down around 11pm. Waking up to frost on my tent I felt a bit tired from my journey and decided to spend the following day exploring Anchorage, on foot.

Homer may have been the end of the road but it is not the end of Greg’s Adventure.

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