1. Singletrack

    Singletrack Limited User

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    Hi All,

    I've been researching the idea of getting an enclosed trailer (5x10) with bikes, from the GTA to Alberta, and back this summer.

    - Driving/towing it out and back is obviously the cheapest, but will take at least 6 days out of my vacation.
    - I've gotten a few quotes for commercial freight carriers, but $2500-$3000, one way, is out of the question.

    Has anyone come across a suitable way to get 3 dirtbikes across the country?
    I'd like to keep them in the trailer if possible, and ship as one unit, but would consider shipping individually if it makes sense.
    Carry on luggage?

    Let's see what ideas the kind folk of the ODSC have to offer. :) :eat
    Thanks in advance,
  2. steveb

    steveb Limited User

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  3. ThatGuyDuncan

    ThatGuyDuncan Limited User

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  4. hardman

    hardman Limited User

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    If you search on Kijiji, there are people traveling west who would be willing to transport your bikes for a very reasonable fee. They are usually private truckers who are heading out that way with little or no load. I was given this information from my brother-in-law who is a trucker, only problem is timing can be an issue.

    Six years back or so we got invited to a wedding in Fernie BC and I wanted to take my dirt bike out to ride the trails in the mountains there. I looked into everything and found a trucker heading that way on Kijiji, but timing was wrong. I than decided I would trailer my bike out, but could not afford the extra time there and back. So I ended up flying out with the family instead and once out there, man did I regret not having my bike there! :(

    Its my goal to get a bike out there someday and ride those mountains! :)
  5. Singletrack

    Singletrack Limited User

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    @Hardman
    Ya I was thinking about options like that, but I don't want to be without my bike for weeks before and after. A flatbed trailer should be able to carry the loaded trailer with ease. After all, companies are shipping new enclosed trailers every day like that.
    But I think driving might be the only way. Planning to visit Calgary friends that ride in BC mountains. :)
  6. Chef

    Chef ODSC Executive

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    Thinking of all costs and time involved, if you have friends out there, perhaps you could find a bike out there that they could pick up for you. Do your riding, then sell it. Even if it cost you 500.00 at the end of the day you might be further ahead. You might even get lucky and find the same make,model and year that you have plated here....for parts of course.

    Edit: oops just saw that it was 3 bikes ....might complicate things.
  7. Singletrack

    Singletrack Limited User

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    @Chef, Ya kids always complicate things... :roll: :lol:
    Not a bad idea though.
    They have some trail bikes, but we won't be satisfied without our own bikes.
  8. fedge

    fedge Limited User

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    Do the math on the air fare, Grab your tents, rent a trailer, maybe from some one you know, red eye it out and take your time coming home.Price of gas/fuel will make up the differents on the cost. Nice way to see our country and a good trip for the family.

    I would Rent you mine but heading out myself to BC this summer around the same time, and taking our bikes.
  9. 3BeeJay3

    3BeeJay3 ODSC Executive

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    Your trailer should easily fit in the back of any van trailer, or on the back of a flatbed. What I would do is try to find any cattle hauler or freight hauler from AB that is looking for a back haul from Southern ON. They often will take whatever they can get, including 'Less than truckload' payloads. I worked in that industry for years and used to regularly hit the phones looking for cheap deals to get freight moved out west.

    Nowadays, with Google you can easily locate any trucker that is based out there. Your trailer is likely about 14feet long overall and probably weighs about 2000-2500lbs loaded with bikes & gear. You should be able to get it out there for under $1000, if your willing to hit the phones and have flexibility as far as getting the trailer to a dock and timing as to when the truck is available in your area.
    You will need to meet the truck at a dock or warehouse etc. that has both ground level and regular dock bays.
    You can also choose your own price to a degree when it comes to back haul freight. But remember, if you're too low, they'll probably tell you to buzz off.
    You may have to make a bunch of calls to get one that is in Ontario frequently and needs freight. With any luck, you can get the same company to bring it back as well and strike a better deal.
    You can also contact load brokers and have them set it up for you, but they'll take a cut as well.
    Either way, it's probably going to cost a couple thousand, or more all in, plus a bunch of time and screwing around. It may be cheaper and easier to phone a dealer and see if they'll rent you some bikes for a couple days...
    I do get that you want to ride your own bikes, especially on unfamiliar terrain, been there. However, practicality may trump things here....
    Personally if it was me, I'd see if I could get an extra week of vacation and drive out with my own trailer and bikes....
  10. fedge

    fedge Limited User

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    Careful with the Private Carriers, its their time, not when you want things to happen. Been there in passed life shipped steel to the west with load brokers,
    once the load left the yard, sometimes it would not show up for 2 weeks, you know few stops to see the girl friends along the way. Also LTL Less than truck load.
    Same sort of deal, just insure the hell out of it before you let them go.

    It's like tits or tires it's going to cost you money.
    fedge
  11. 3BeeJay3

    3BeeJay3 ODSC Executive

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    Agreed, but generally if you stick to the companies that have more than a few trucks, it'll get there in a reasonably timely manner. It's the 1 and 2 truck or the gypsy type ones you want to avoid, unless it's a full load. However, with LTL, if you're first on the trailer, you're usually last off, which often means several days added to the timeframe, especially if they wait around trying to fill out the load. Flexibility is needed to make it work. That means the trailer might have to be shipped 2 or 3 weeks ahead of time, & the same when it returns, which means the OP could lose the use of the trailer and bikes for about a month or so just because of shipping time.
    There are lots of companies out there with 20-200+ trucks, full time dispatch & professional drivers that don't screw around. Used to use them reliably all the time, about 100 loads a month.... I also made sure I had lots of flexibility on each load. The load broker option sometimes attracts the bums of the industry, so should only be used carefully IMO.

    If I was the OP, I'd find a way to drive out with my own stuff..
  12. hverbakel

    hverbakel Limited User

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    I just had a Harley Davidson shipped from San Fransisco to POrt Huron for 525.00 total with Haubikes. This included insurance and was in a fully enclosed trailer. Not sure how three dirtbikes would compare in price but you may want to check it out.
  13. Singletrack

    Singletrack Limited User

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    Thanks for the ideas guys.
    I think we've ruled out shipping, and planning to drive out, with our SUV and trailer.
    Another option is renting a Motorhome and pulling our trailer. Would be more fun for the kids to travel in at least.
    Anybody know of a 24' class C motorhome for rent (privately). Or a ToyHauler motorhome.
  14. fedge

    fedge Limited User

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    Just bad timing, I have a Neptune by Holiday Rambler Class A with the Trailer would be willing to rent but we are heading out at the same time,maybe next year.

    fedge