THE ARCTIC RIDER STORY

"Gordon Stuart (AKA The Arctic Rider) is on a mission to ride his motorbike across the Arctic Circle in every country possible, while raising money and awareness for causes close to his heart."

“It started in 2011 as a charity ride to the Arctic Circle that didn’t really go to plan, and has become a near obsession with the Arctic, an obsession with riding a motorbike, and an obsession helping organisations who help others” - Traverse Magazine, November 2017.

To date, Gordon has raised over £13,000 for charities, ridden over 14,000 miles as part of the challenges.

Gordon is an Ambassador UK-brain injury charity Cerebra and global youth leader forum One Young World, and fundraiser for special care babies charity Tiny Lives. He is keen motorcyclist, writer, and film maker.

Raffle, route(s), & recapitulation

Greetings and Happy New Year to you all!

How is it 2018 already? The years seems to be flying by... Its mad to think its coming up 4 years since I did my Arctic Ride to Nordkapp! The world needs to slow down a bit.

2018 means it's finally time for me to say "This year I'd heading to Alaska to take on The Dalton Highway"... How easy it rolls off the tongue... anxiety levels are starting to raise and the realization of what I have committed to do is starting to sink in. Its one of the things I live for but doing these rides, solo, takes a lot of fortitude and self belief. I must say the thought of leaving my wife and 2 young kids for a few weeks isn't the easiest either. Huge thanks to my wife Kirsty for supporting my dreams, this charity project, and for the weeks of stress she'll go through looking after the little nippers while I'm away.

I'm very pleased to say that plans for Alaska are starting to progress although with only 148 days until my departure date I really needed to start making some progress. As per my last blog, I thought the below was a quick and easy way to summarize where I am at with the planning,

THE BIKE - Hiring a bike is now out of the question for this year and my eggs are firmly in the  'major motorcycle manufacturer' basket to get a bike for the ride. I got an updated quote from the hire company in Alaska and the bike I was planning to rent is now out of service in 2018. Alongside this exchange rates changes haven't helped and as I'm self funded, I can no longer afford the hire prices for a bigger bike style (and even if I could the ratio between the cost of the trip and the fundraising target starts to become very unbalanced). The good news is that the motorcycle manufacturer has confirmed that support for me is in their budget for this year and we're now working through logistics of getting a bike. This will either be supplied in the US or shipped over from the UK... watch this space!

THE DATE- I still don't know exactly the dates I will be heading to Alaska due to the bike situation. I've set a tentative date of 1st June for my departure.. 148 days to go... This way it I should miss the road repair season the Dalton but (hopefully) the weather will have started to turn and it won't be sub-zero for the whole journey.

THE ROUTE - As per my 'The Bike' update it looks like I'll either collect a bike in the USA or have one flown over from the UK. If I collect the bike in the USA the plan would be to fly into Anchorage and pick it up there. If the bike is shipped from the UK then I could end up linking up with the bike in Anchorage, Vancouver, or Calgary.



If its one of the Canadian cities my route, daily and total mileage will significantly change.


As you can see, if I have to join the bike in Canada, I'll end up doubling my total mileage and my daily mileage too. Unfortunately I don't have an unlimited time slot to do the ride, so a Canada start would mean only a few extra days on the road but a significant uplift in the challenge.

Raffle

So that is the update on my planning progress. As I mentioned in my last blog, I will soon be launching the first Arctic Rider Biker Raffle. You will be able to buy raffle tickets online through my VirginMoneyGiving page. Full entry details and T&Cs to follow. All tickets sales will go directly to charity. I'm still waiting on final confirmation of prizes but so far we have...

Current donatees and prizes

  • Devitt Insurance - Brand new helmet (make to be confirmed)
  • Visorcat - Visorcat helmet wash/wipe system - RRP £34.99
  • Custom Lids - prize to be confirmed
  • J & S Accessories - Frank Thomas Stealth Textile Jacket - RRP £139.99
  • Sam Manicom - x8 Adventure Travel Book 'Into Africa' signed by its acclaimed author Sam Manicom - RRP £13.99

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Keep and eye out for the big launch.

That is it for this time. Thanks, as always, for all the love and support. And for the recent donations for 2 very worthy causes.

If you'd like to donate to the charities, securely and safely, please visit my Virgin Money Giving page or click on the image below.


Ride safe,

Gordon

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