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Old 11-29-2012, 02:22 PM   #16
Mendodave
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Rollin'

Lev rode out this morning, into a pretty stiff south wind, but the rain was north of us at that time. He is heading down the coast, which will be entertaining to say the least. Quite an interesting fellow, this is going to be a good report!

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Old 11-29-2012, 02:41 PM   #17
Bruce H
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Finding free places to camp in California and along Hwy 1 is tough. I usually arrive after dark and leave before sunrise, helps limit the discussions with a ranger. There are several roads going west from 1 back to 101 thru the woods, many places to camp in there. Do stay on the main roads though, the pot growers don't like strangers. Watch out for "bubba" he is a bit squirrly and drives fast in the woods.

I am guessing you didn't see the forcast before leaving, California didn't look too good for the rest of the week, along the beach near San Francisco and south.

In any case Good Luck and keep the story and photos posted.
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Old 11-29-2012, 04:58 PM   #18
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Keep on truckin...

You look like a guy who can handle a little weather! Keep it up man, and post some more pics if you can. One of the coolest things to do is set up camp along a coastline, hunker down and watch a good storm!

I'm held up in Flagstaff waiting on some parts so if you decide to head this way before Phoenix PM me and I'll buy you a beer!
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Old 11-29-2012, 05:18 PM   #19
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Very interesting trip! I'll be following along.
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Old 11-29-2012, 06:02 PM   #20
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Grrr...

Thanks mendodave. It was great meeting you and chatting. Looking forward to our potential trip in the future. I thought you weren't going to post that one



Definitely keeping an eye out for the (not so) elusive "bubba" Bruce Yeah, land on the coast is a premium so camping is hard to come by in Oregon too. Tent space is the best thing ever! So great to be part of such a community!

muskeg - I promise to start posting more pics as soon as my hands aren't too cold to pull the camera out. Isn't Flagstaff at like 8000 ft.?!? I'm not touching that place with a "100 mile pole" (so to speak). Maybe I can catch you in Sedona or Phoenix. Your day trip report didn't mention you're still in Flagstaff...
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Old 11-29-2012, 06:10 PM   #21
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Haha! Yeah, we're up there- 7000' but the skies are clear and it's still in the 60's during the day... I guess waiting for the USPS to figure out where I live could be a blessing in disguise considering what you're riding through! Hope you stay warm and dry tonight!
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Old 11-29-2012, 06:11 PM   #22
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I've also been watching John Down's ride. You guys have the right idea. I used this link to help me with the weather on my last trip: http://www.wunderground.com/roadtrip/ I stopped at McD's for the free wifi and it routed me around some real crap weather. Keep stopping for pictures. Us homebound folks need something to look at.
Have a safe trip, Tom
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Old 11-29-2012, 10:25 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by 0theories View Post
Thanks mendodave. It was great meeting you and chatting. Looking forward to our potential trip in the future. I thought you weren't going to post that one


the other one was out of focus, hoser! sorry!

its appropriate. hope you didn't get too wet.

yes, looking forward to some rides too.

Mendo
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Old 11-30-2012, 05:05 PM   #24
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Trying to outrun the rain (unsuccessfully)

“This is the most restful night of sleep I've had in a while” I thought to myself as I woke up in Mendodave's cozy trailer. And probably the most restful I'll have in a while. No worries about the bike being messed with, no hassle of breaking down a went camp... I actually had a dream the night before of waking up at camp and finding my bike in various pieces as I hiked down the trail trying to track it down. In the dream I wasn't upset about about it, and I'd like to think I wouldn't be in real life, but I doubt that's true. As Chuck Palahniuk wrote, “The things you own end up owning you.”

So I packed up my gear and drank a delicious cup of coffee that Dave made me, then after the mandatory photos, I was on my way. My plan was to follow Rt. 1 down to the Bay, but after fighting the severe wind for a few miles I cut across on the 128 back to Hwy 101 where it was wetter, but not nearly as windy.

Dave (a BMW rider) happily posing in front of the KLR...


I'm in a beautiful forest, why not stop for some preventive maintenance...


It was another uneventful day in the saddle. At this point I'm just making miles to be at certain places at certain times. This report will be pretty boring until I actually make it into Mexico (sorry). Crossing the Richmond bridge was super sketchy with the wind trying to blow me off the side. I did detour into central Berkeley where I used to live and had the BEST vegan duck! If you're interested, the place is called “Long Life Vegi House” (on University and Shattuck). The vegan duck there is better than any duck I've had anywhere, real or otherwise. It was a pure delight (and I have leftovers!!).

I proceeded through the urban sprawl of the Bay area and finally came out on the 101 heading south to Gilroy, where I was to stay with Mongox. He's hosting a Advrider event this weekend, but I think I'm too early to participate in the festivities.

I followed Mongox's extensive directions down some narrow, twisty roads in the dark and rain. He lives in a beautiful area which I'm excited to see during daylight hours tomorrow. Tonight it's fascinating, but mostly in an academic sense. I'm just ready to arrive. I found his house with little difficulty, but had a moment of self doubt when I arrived at his driveway. Luckily, as I turned around to insure I was in the right place, Mongox came out and blinked his flashlight to attract my attention.

We hung out for a bit and chatted. Mongox is a very interesting guy, with one of the coolest jobs ever. He's living the life! Nice to meet you man!! After relaxing and having a good conversation I hit the sack (in my tent, set up under some cover from the rain), and fell asleep to the sound of raindrops hitting various surfaces, making a lullaby of sorts.
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Old 11-30-2012, 05:14 PM   #25
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madeouttaglass - thanks for that weather link. Can't believe I didn't know something like this existed! It's now bookmarked...
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Old 12-03-2012, 01:58 PM   #26
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11/30/2012

It's my dad's birthday today. Note to self: remember to call and extend my good wishes.

Woke up in the tent this morning to the sound of rain. Oh boy, here we go again... As I was packing up the soaking wet camping gear, Mongox came out to greet me with a hot cup of coffee. Just what the doctor ordered to make the morning bearable. We spent a bit of time discussing my route. Here I deferred to the expertise of the local. Looks like the most interesting route would be to find Rt. 25 out of Hollister, and take that down to Rt. 198, then cut over to the 101 and continue south. That is just what I did. Although it was steadily raining, Rt. 25 was great fun. Smooth road, wide sweeping turns... It's the closest you can come to flying without leaving the ground. Left a big grin on my face!

The road to Mongox


Today, my gear completely gave up the “waterproof” ghost. If I ever thought the jacket or pants were at all waterproof, I take it back. I got thoroughly soaked (maybe some rodent ate a big hole through the jacket somewhere and I just didn't notice)! So far this adventure is exactly like the beginning of The Hobbit. I'm riding my donkey in the rain, wrapped up in my cloak, feeling rather miserable :)

This is what most of the ride looked like:








I took the 101 for a while, then cut over to Rt. 1, then back to 101, then back to Rt. 1 and into Santa Barbara. Palm trees!! I'm going to be spending a few days here chillin' with an old Marine Corps buddy. He an I were the two dissidents of our battalion. We used to take turns doing something stupid to take the heat off the other person when it got too hot in the kitchen (so to speak).

---Ride Report Intermission---

Coming up next: Santa Barbara to Phoenix AZ.
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:51 PM   #27
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subscribed!
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Old 12-03-2012, 08:33 PM   #28
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Enjoying this, thank you!
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Old 12-04-2012, 04:10 PM   #29
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12/03/2012

Now it's my brother's birthday. Time for another facebook post...

After spending a couple of days hanging out with my friend, his wife and <1 year old baby (which wasn't as bad as I expected), it was time to get back on the road. I'm still trying to make miles so that I can see another friend before he has his finals (accelerated masters in nursing [pretty intense!!]) but I'm not in enough of a rush to ride the interstates, so I took some of the smaller roads, hoping to arrive at Joshua Tree NP before the end of the day. As it's only about 250 miles, I didn't think it would be a problem (and it wasn't). My original plan was to camp in “Slab City” near the Salton Sea. My friend told me though, that the demographics of the area have changed and the hippies and snow birds have been replaced by “meth-heads and thieves”. I don't know if that's really true, but figured it would be cool to see Joshua Tree again anyway (as it used to be my favorite place to trip).

[I did some research and it looks like Slab City is just fine. I should have known the info from my friend would be unreliable as he's also the kind of guy that wouldn't visit a foreign country if they don't have something equivalent to the FDA. I guess he scares easy... too bad (for him and me). To be fair, my research revealed that it's not really a place for tent camping and more of an RV oriented area as there are no bathrooms of any kind.]

If you ever want to go to Morocco and don't care about culture, cheap rooms and different food, don't bother. It looks just like this area of California.
(I'm not entirely serious)

Outside Joshua Tree, USA:


Outside Tafraoute, Morocco:


I took Hwy 101 over to Rt. 126 and headed east through San Bernadino county via Rt. 14 then Rt. 18. Having successfully passed through Desert Sprawlitaire, I entered the true desert with little to nothing in every direction. The miles passed quickly by, and before I knew it I was in the town of Joshua Tree on Rt. 62. I am detecting some issues with the bike, so I stopped at a coffee shop for my semi-hourly fix and to do some research. The bike is making weird “clunking” noises upon acceleration in first and second gear. If I didn't know the doohickey was already done, that would be my first guess. After some searching it looks like it could be my chain and sprockets wearing out. Luckily for me, I plan to replace both sprockets and the chain (as well as the tires) when I get to Phoenix. I really hope that's it, and not some loose metal parts in the engine compartment...

Joshua Tree recently started to charge for camping even in the more remote sites. This did not bode well for my budget, but the only free camping in the area was on some BLM land north of town. I considered it, but decided to try and ride into the park after dark and the money I would save on the entry fee could be spent on a camp site. However, I found out that if you go in at night for free, they'll still charge you on your way out. Luckily motorcycles are only $5 (versus $15 for a car) so it wasn't prohibitively expensive.

I rode in and it was very cold. So far it's been really nice since Santa Barbara (almost too hot) but in the desert at night it gets COLD. Out come the gloves once again. I reached my desired camp site, Ryan, with little trouble (except for a rabbit that ran out in front of me and almost got himself [or herself] killed), set up camp and crashed out for the night.

In the morning:


Morocco:


More photos coming from now on. I promise!
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Old 12-04-2012, 06:18 PM   #30
madeouttaglass
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madeouttaglass - thanks for that weather link. Can't believe I didn't know something like this existed! It's now bookmarked...
Glad to share it. The good folks at Pashnit.com turned me onto it. Thanks for taking the time to post up your trip. I love seeing California.
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