In July 2014, with 1 year and 10 months of riding experience under my belt, I departed on an adventure that would test my independence in a way I never had before. The previous year, I met up with my father in Yellowstone Park, which was a safety net along the way as I rode alone - knowing I would eventually meet up with a friendly face. This year, it would be me, my Ducati Multistrada and the open road the entire time. I planned to travel 3,500 miles in 12 days across Canada along top-rated motorcycle roads, with Banff and Jasper being the goal destinations. As my trip approached rapidly, and I worked towards getting my bike in order to leave, I was watching the weather closely. Rain was in the forecast and this would be something I was ultimately hoping to avoid. In fact, I had made the decision to go the same week I had in the previous year strictly because the weather had been so perfect. Each day I checked leading up, the anticipated rain would become less and less of a concern for me. Call it beginner's luck, but after I had gathered rain bags and emergency Frogg Toggs, the only days I was expecting to see rain was on my day of departure, and the singular day of rest I had planned mid-trip.