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Old 08-23-2013, 04:55 AM   #466
davebig
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I'm sorry to see the prettiest rig on advrider laying in a ditch.Your able to post, I hope that Kirby is OK,knowing what dogs mean to dog people I now understand your silence.DB
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Old 08-23-2013, 06:27 AM   #467
Mastercylinder
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So sorry to hear about your incident. As davebig said we hope Kirby is alright. Is he alright?
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Old 08-23-2013, 07:53 AM   #468
rg, sw wa.
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Echo the prior expressions of concern and hope you and Kirby are alright.
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Old 08-23-2013, 11:13 AM   #469
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Ned, really hope all is well with both you and Kirby.
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Old 08-23-2013, 12:08 PM   #470
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These posts remind me of arriving at the Hells Canyon Rally. You motor into the campground through the big gate then putt-putt along at 5mph to keep the dust down. This takes you right down the middle of the campground and, as people tend to do, folks turn to see who's the new arrival. In my case, I'm always greeted with many smiles and waves and shouts of people saying things like, "Hey, look, Kirby's back!" "Hi Kirby!" "Kirby, we missed you!" "Yay, it's Kirby!" Like my handle says, I'm just the dog chauffeur.

Anyway, the breakaway restraint system I devised for Mr. K worked exactly as planned. He was flung out of the car and was standing by my side with a puzzled look on his face when I first opened my eyes. Totally unscathed.

Me, on the other hand . . . but wait I'm only up to Day 5. I'll get there eventually. Or, as Boondox might say, Kira at Bashi.
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Old 08-23-2013, 12:46 PM   #471
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Good to hear you are doing fine. About this break away system you have or had for Kirby, does one of your threads say how this is done? I'm curious since I have a hack pup too and would like to know about this system. Right now he's tethered, but not with anything that would break away in case of a violent overturn.
Again, good to hear you and Kirby are okay.
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Old 08-23-2013, 01:06 PM   #472
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I feel better about abusing you now knowing Kirby is fine.If you like sidecars and are not too intimidated you may end up with enough to start over easily, and if the forks got mangled it could be leading link time and a touratech 41 liter tank and your off to advriding. I spent 21 months in a hospital between 72-74 and if you've looked at my thread know I still have poor impulse control.Feel better.DB
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Old 08-23-2013, 02:02 PM   #473
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Glad to hear Kirby is okay. And I know what you mean about playing second fiddle. Everybody knows and loves Barley. Me? I'm known as Barley's Dad!

But tell us about you!

Shaka, when the walls fell.
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Old 08-23-2013, 02:11 PM   #474
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GDR Day 6-Seeley Lake to Butte

Crossed the Continental Divide four times this day and did 243 miles. Not bad! Left Seeley Lake around 9am and headed to Ovando on a very pretty gravel road called the Cottonwood Lakes Road. Ovando is very small but has this cool little cafe--




Continued along the GDR to the Huckleberry Pass Road but found it to be closed (forgot to take pic here, as usual.) Since Cannonshot had said this was one of the more punishing sections of the route, I was not upset at all. Spoke with a local rancher and he suggested an alternate route that worked out great--Cooper Lake Rd back to Rt. 200 then over the Herrin Lake Rd to Fields Gulch where I picked up the GDR again.

So far on the trip the only strenuous gravel I'd done was over Bald Pass east of Eureka. I say "strenuous" because it wasn't really technically challenging--more like just a lot of work. Tiring. Anyway, from Fields Gulch on up to the Granite Butte Lookout the road became strenuous once again--






This road was too rugged for 3rd gear. It was mostly 2nd gear but there was also some 1st gear sections. From atop the lookout we had some nice 360 views of the area and tremendous winds! I've done a bit of sailing so I can guesstimate wind speeds pretty well and I'd say that the wind up there was a steady 35-40mph with gusts over 50. The lookout is NOT tall, but still needs heavy wire guylines to keep it grounded. I could feel the whole thing shake with every wind blast--






Had an interesting experience here (ladies, cover your eyes for this part.) Needed to take a whiz, and I did, but was surprised to see that the rocks at my feet were completely dry when I was finished. This because the wind turned my pee to vapor before it could hit the ground!

I crossed the Continental Divide on pavement up near Banff, and again at Crowsnest Pass, but my first crossing on gravel was right around there somewhere so I memorialized it with a selfie--




I thought the toughest part of the day's ride was over, but I was wrong. As I went up Lost Horse Rd and over Priest Pass I sometimes felt like Charlie Brown and the football, where the road itself was Lucy. Lucy would keep saying to me, "Go ahead and shift up into 2nd. It's OK. I won't be bad again. You can go faster." So then I'd shift into 2nd and BLAM! she'd pull the football away and I'd have to drop back down into 1st! This went on and on. I enjoyed it--it was fun--pretty much on the pegs the whole way--but very slow going--








Selfie at Divide crossing #2 on Lost Horse Road--




Priest Pass and selfie because this was crossing #3--




By the way, if you are afraid of cattle, don't try doing the GDR. Lots of free range cattle on the road. When you see them up close, you realize why they survive so well in the backcountry despite predators like wolves and cougars. It's because they're so blasted BIG! A 6-month old black angus calf might weigh as much as 500 lbs and a 2 year old heifer can be around 1200 lbs. This is not easy prey for a 200 lb cougar. Anyway, I found the best strategy for dealing with the stubborn ones was to approach them steadily in 1st gear but to steer towards their rump. If they were facing me, I'd stop and lurch and blast the horn until they turned, then creep towards their rump. Here is a pic of three calfs that were very stubborn and it took me nearly 5 minutes to get all three of them to give way and turn tail--




Once over Priest Pass the road improves and it was an easy descent to Rt. 12 where the GDR takes you into Helena. But it was only mid-afternoon and I had no need to see Helena so I turned south on the Rimini Road (sorta rhymes with "Gemini") and then took the turn-off to the Chessman Resevoir. I started to regret this decision when I found myself on a very steep and narrow rocky trail with no place to turn around. Getting wheelspin in 1st gear standing on the pegs when I ran into this interesting-looking gent about my age out rambling--



First of all, he couldn't believe I'd made it up the trail this far (of course, he knew nothing about GS hacks and their capabilities), but he said that if I'd made it this far I should keep going just a little ways farther to the top of the hill where the road flattens out and gets better. He was right--made it to the top in one piece and the road around the reservoir was doable in 2nd gear.

Shortly I rejoined the GDR and decided to take a route called the "Boulder Alternative" which is part of the GDR but avoids a challenging section. It was getting late in the day and I didn't feel like another challenge. Quickly discovered that the Boulder Alternative was not only NOT easy, it was nearly impassable with mudholes 30 feet wide with water up to my axles. Finally gave up on it, and motored the last 30 miles to Butte on the interstate. Managed to cross for a 4th time though--




Found a moto-friendly motel (the Capri Motel) in Old Butte, got some dinner at the Hennessy Market, and collapsed into bed at 9pm. This was a great day!
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Old 08-23-2013, 04:52 PM   #475
Dan Alexander
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Old 08-23-2013, 06:02 PM   #476
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GDR Day 7-Butte Rest Day

Aug 4-I woke up feeling still pretty whupped by the GDR workout I'd had the day before and decided to take a rest day. Of course, wouldn't you know the weather would be fantastic--clearly the nicest day since I'd left Tacoma. But I'd made my decision and in retrospect it was a good one. I was tired. Spent the day lolling around, gave Kirby a bath then we went for a long walk, did my laundry, took care of some maintenance items on the rig, and motored around historic Butte for a while.

Butte has a long and proud history of mining. Mostly copper. In the early part of the 20th century, one quarter of the world's copper supply (yes--the world!) came from Butte mines. And the mines are actually in Butte--not like 20 miles away but actually in the city limits. There is only one mine still operating ("The Pit") which more or less defines the eastern edge of the city.

Here are a few pics from in and around Butte--













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Old 08-23-2013, 07:45 PM   #477
boxertwin
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Great write-up, Drone!

ps. Went to the range today. :-)
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Old 08-23-2013, 08:29 PM   #478
DRONE OP
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GDR Day 8-Butte to Red Rock Lake

Aug 5-I uploaded 73 pics from this day so I must have done a lot. I won't post them all here, but I expect this post to be a long one.

We rolled out of the Capri parking lot a 6:20am, 45 and clear, and headed down Highland Road towards the town of Divide. What a special time that was! Riding before sun up (sunrise came at about 7am) on a great road through patches of ground fog, crossing the Divide (#5), then emerging out of the forest and into the first sagebrush field we'd seen--










From Divide to Wise River the GDR goes over Mt Fleecer. Tough on a mountain bike, dangerous on a motorcycle, ill-advised on a sidecar rig. So here is my picture of the Mt. Fleecer section of the ride--



Doesn't look too scary from here!


We stopped somewhere south of Wise River for breakfast that I'd bought the day before--




Mixed pavement and gravel south through the Grasshopper Valley and on to Polaris, still a beautiful scenic road--




Where the Polaris Road tee's into Rt. 278 I ran into my first fellow FF-GDR rider. This is Richard from Yreka--



Seventy-nine years old and doing the GDR as a solo rider on his KLR. And my friends think that I'm adventurous! He bought the KLR just for this ride because he didn't think that the 1200GS that he rode to Alaska last year was the right bike for this ride! Most of you guys can only wish you were half as tough as this guy. Cool dude.

Next stop was the Bannock Ghost Town. I was really looking forward to Bannock but when I got to the turn off--




The state hired a private security guy to keep people out and to show us instead the pictures of the flood that had deluged Bannock only two weeks before--




Pretty boring job so I stopped and chatted with him awhile before pushing off south towards the Medicine Creek Valley--









Kirby saw his first pronghorns along this section. He got pretty excited--



Typically, I only got a pic of them leaving the vicinity.






By the way, I saw several of these contraptions which appear to be cattle-related, but I don't know what they are. Anybody?




Medicine Creek dumps into Big Sheep Creek and the GDR follows this drainage for quite a ways. Saw my first non-coastal Bald Eagle here (we have lots of eagles around Tacoma)--






Eventually, Big Sheep Creek dumps you out onto the frontage road next to I-15 and I got gas at this cafe--



Get it? It's a cafe!

And saw this inviting establishment--




Rode on into the little town of Lima and as I started to head east out of town my linear actuator stopped working. This is the gizmo that some people call the electric trim or tilt adjuster. I turned around and found a interstate rest stop that was the perfect place to do some wrenching--



I couldn't troubleshoot the problem and decided that it was likely that I had burned out the electric motor on the actuator--maybe related somehow to the failed shock that I'd been riding on. Unbolted the bottom mount and turned the actuator shaft by hand until it was at a medium height, then bolted it back up again (sounds simple but I needed a crowbar and jack to get it.) This guy, Mr. Root from Watkins Glen NY, stopped to help, and he really was a big help. Really. Good guy--




Lost quite a bit of time with this breakdown but eventually around 6pm got back on the GDR headed east toward the Lima Reservoir over rolling hills of sage--












As the sun got low in the sky, we pushed hard to get to a campground in the Red Rocks Lake Wildlife Refuge--










Zipped up the tent at 10pm. 272 mile day even with the breakdown.
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Old 08-23-2013, 08:54 PM   #479
boatmole
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Sorry about the accident

Quote:
Originally Posted by DRONE View Post
Is this thread coming to an end? Maybe.

WUMPA is wrecked. The insurance people have taken their pictures. The repair estimates are in the works. If it's totaled, I plan to buy the salvage rights and part it out. If it's not totaled, then that's another story. I should know in a week or two. Right now I'm thinking it could go either way.

In the meantime, I want to chronicle WUMPA's final trip and explain just what happened in Wyoming.

Hope your ok. I haven't seen you since you lead the ride in Idaho last year, I was on the Ural Troyka. I did he same roll over 2 years ago on a dual sport ride, flipped her back over and kept riding. Hope all comes out ok. Marty Chin
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Old 08-23-2013, 09:38 PM   #480
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GDR Day 9-Red Rock Lakes to Turpin Meadow

Aug 6-The campsite looked a little brighter in the morning--



This wildlife refuge has one of the world's largest populations of trumpeter swans and they were at it all night. Trumpeting I mean. Earplugs came in handy. Also spoke with one of the Conservation Rangers who told me that a fellow lost an arm in a grizzly attack three weeks earlier about 15 miles south of my campsite. Kinda glad I followed proper bear country protocol that night and stored all my food and trash in the campground's bear lock up.

Rolled out at 8am and headed towards Yellowstone National Park. Saw my first sign mentioning Yellowstone. Noticed that there was still some snow around here--






Stopped and ate breakfast here at Red Rock Pass (Divide crossing #6) which also marks the border between Montana and Idaho--




Then rode to Henry's Lake and Big Springs, Idaho--





Big Springs is really something to see. Every day 120 Million gallons of groundwater just welling up in the middle of nowhere--it's the source of the Henry's Fork which is a major river in this area. Here's a pic of the Henry's Fork only a few miles from Big Springs where of course Kirby had to go swimming--






Had to stop here because my linear actuator had wormed its way back down to the bottom stop knocking my trim all out of whack. I bought some hose clamps at a hardware store then began the laborious job of jacking up the rig, disconnecting the actuator, and hand screwing the shaft out to a neutral position, then I stacked the hose clamps around the shaft to keep it from backing down again. Fingers crossed I headed out again after about a 2-hr delay.

Next stop was a little touristy, but I wanted to see Mesa Falls--










From here I followed the Flagg Ranch Road to the Wyoming border where I entered Yellowstone Park and got my first glimpse of the Grand Tetons--








After Grassy Lake the Flagg Ranch Road turns into the Rockefeller Parkway. This parkway is not anything like the Garden State Parkway or the Blue Ridge Parkway--








The parkway ends at the Flagg Ranch on State Rt. 191 where you turn south on pavement toward Jackson Lake and Jackson, WY--



Unfortunately, this 15-mile stretch of pavement between Flagg Ranch and Moran Junction took me over an hour because of construction. I stared a hole in my GPS trying to find a dirt alternative but there wasn't one. Finally got to Moran Junction about 5pm and broke out of the stop-and-go tourist traffic by turning east on Rt. 26 and then northeast on the Buffalo Valley Rd. Yay! Back on the GDR and back on gravel!

The picture above was the last one I took before the crash.

186 miles this day including construction delays, sightseeing trips, and linear actuator repair.

2686 miles since leaving Tacoma.
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