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Old 12-05-2011, 02:51 AM   #46
BlackBeast
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Travel safe and good luck. You are in for one amazing ride. We left BC for Argentina last August and wish I was still riding.
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Old 12-05-2011, 06:57 AM   #47
BC Brian OP
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Day 6 Dec 4 36kms Jackson State Forest to Fort Bragg Ca

Woke up early (early to bed and all that) and it was cold outside the tent. It was nice and warm inside my bedroll, so I stayed there until natures call could no longer be ignored. Climbed back into bed until it started to get light out, got up and packed up camp. I was on the road about the time the sun was just starting to warm things up. Got into Fort Bragg, and the town was pretty much still asleep. Rode around town a bit, then grabbed a bench in the park for a bit and watched the town wake up. Before long, the sun had warmed up enough that it once again felt like summer. Rode around a bit more, looking for access to the ocean. Found the trail and walked down to the beach area. It was definitely worth looking for. I spent the next 3 hours at the ocean watching the sea lions, the waves and the people.






















By the time I was done there, it was getting hot. I decided that I would stay in Fort Bragg for the night, and do laundry and a bit of bike maintenance. I got a room and went for a walk through town.







Saw this sign, and figured it didn’t work very well. I saw bicycles on the sidewalk, skateboards on the sidewalk, but not one horse on the sidewalk
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Old 12-05-2011, 09:09 PM   #48
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Awesome pictures! Those sea lions look so comfortable lying there in the sun!
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Old 12-06-2011, 07:55 AM   #49
BC Brian OP
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Day7 Dec 5 271kms Fort Bragg Ca to Yuba City Ca

I waited until the sun was high in the sky before I left Fort Bragg. The temperature was still……… let say “Crisp”….. Not so crisp that I needed to put on my heavier gloves, but crisp enough that I turned on my grip warmers.
I hit hwy 20 and headed East towards Wilitis. Hwy 20, like most of the “Not Freeway” roads I have been on in California, was awesome. Again, the road wove through the trees, and was quite shaded. Enough that I was concerned about frost on the road. So I wasn’t “On IT” as much as I might have been had the roads been dry and frost free.
I stopped at a rest stop, and there was a lot of frost on the grass.



I only had the back end slip once in that area, and soon there was a noticeable temperature change, so back to having fun with the twisties.

The scenery slowly changed as I rode away from the coast, and soon I was in drier, scenic country.





Out of Wilitis I had to ride the freeway for about 15 miles, then back onto Hwy 20 for some more nice road. Rode past Lake Mendocino and Clear Lake. The road follows the shoreline and is quite spectacular (sorry, I was having fun and didn’t stop for photos)

Somewhere near Willams the land turned to prairie, and the wind pickup up……. a lot… I was doing the old ”lean the bike right over to keep the bike going straight” thing and had to keep my helmet turned about 30 degrees into the wind so as not to hurt my neck. At least the wind was steady and not too gusty. Mine you, when a transport truck would go by in the other lane, it would almost blow me right off the road ( no exaggeration )

While riding through Colusa, I saw a guy dancing around on a street corner with a sign that said “All you can eat, $6.99”. I am not sure if he was dancing to attract customers, or just n to hold the sign in the wind. So I went into the “Round Table” and ate all I could for $6.99

The whole area was as flat as a pancake for as far as the eye could see, and as I was riding out of Colusa, I saw in the distance a mini mountain range poking out of the prairie.



Got a room for the night and went for a walk down town. Turns out I was in Marysville and not Yuba City.
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Old 12-06-2011, 08:04 AM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarrod Weaver View Post
+1 for YT Dave's suggestion. HWY 1 is a must.

I'm thinking that you should put Hwy 1 on top of your list of to-do's if you're headed south from SF. The riding along the coast is spectacular. Hearst Castle is worth seeing. I'd be inclined to stay on Hwy 1 until at least San Luis Obispo before heading inland to the 5. It's not something you'll regret.


Quote:
Originally Posted by YT Dave View Post
I'm thinking that you should put Hwy 1 on top of your list of to-do's if you're headed south from SF. The riding along the coast is spectacular. Hearst Castle is worth seeing. I'd be inclined to stay on Hwy 1 until at least San Luis Obispo before heading inland to the 5. It's not something you'll regret.

If you go inland from SF and head to the 5 south, it's long, boring, flat but sure to be warm and dry which is also probably high on your list at this time of year.

I'll be following your ride report with interest.


*******Sold******


I have to go south anyhow, and I am all about great roads and fantastic scenery.

Thanks
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Old 12-06-2011, 08:07 AM   #51
BC Brian OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hnguyen View Post
Would love to buy you a drink when you stop by San Francisco again. Will show you the way out of town this time.
415-359-3341 Hoa
Thanks. I will give you a call when I am in town.

And..... I think a guide through San Francisco might end up with me actually going South
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Old 12-06-2011, 05:42 PM   #52
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Keep it coming Brian!

You won't be missing the bcbtr next year anyways.
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Old 12-07-2011, 01:46 AM   #53
Tropic-Of-Canada
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Good stuff bro, I love the writing! I'm stuck on the Island and have been dying to go south ever since I got a bike! This is one of the first ride reports that I have caught from the very beginning, and was stoked to see it was another BC rider going south! Used to live in PG myself, so I completely understand you wanting to escape winter and leave everything! You're living the dream right now, all the best!
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Old 12-07-2011, 08:11 AM   #54
BC Brian OP
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Panniers

I have been getting a lot of questions and comments on my panniers and gas cans, so I thought I would share what I did with them.

When I bought the bike, it came with stock, plastic panniers.



They are great. They are light, easy on and off, and become suitcases when they are off the bike.
But….. they are plastic and they are side opening. That is fine for around home, but for this trip I wanted something that was top loading and a bit tougher than plastic. I know that at some point I am going to lay it down, and broken plastic is harder to fix than bent aluminum.

Once I got the bike home, I went to see my amigo at New life Cycle, a motorcycle salvage business in Williams Lake, to see if he had any ideas. He had a set of used, slightly bent aluminum panniers off a wrecked KLR. He gave me a screaming deal on them, and let me take them home before paying to see if I could make them work. They weren’t a perfect fit, but I figured I could work with them.
It looked like they would fit without moving the signal lights with a bit of cutting. I got out the grinder just as my wife came into the shop. She saw me standing there with a grinder beside my shiny, new to me motorcycle, and said, as she has said so many times before “sometimes you scare me”



With a bit of measuring, I figured that if I welded a piece of flatbar on top of the rack, drilled holes and tapped them, I could mount the panniers on the rack and still use the stock panniers ( they mount on the inside of the rack)



As the buell only holds 4US gallons, I wanted to be able to carry more fuel. I looked on line and found a site for Peg Packers, and figured something similar would work. They didn’t make a product that would fit a Ulysses, so I went to my good friend Pat, owner of Sonic Cycle in Williams Lake ( who is also a Millwright) to see what we could come up with. We decided that mounting gas cans to the pegs would leave little leg room for me, so we decided to build aluminum boxes and fit them to the pannier lids.



So when all was said and done, it looked like this

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Old 12-07-2011, 05:04 PM   #55
1955BIKER
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I'm in for the ride. Since it is suppose to snow here tonight, I can't ride mine so I tag along with you.
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Old 12-07-2011, 06:35 PM   #56
BC Brian OP
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Day 8 Dec 6 204 kms Yuba City Ca to Calusa Ca

Yeah, I know. Calusa is only 30 miles from Yuba City, but I took the scenic routeJ
Wasn’t sure where I was going to go today, so I looked at the map, and saw Chico, so I figured I ain’t never been there before, so away I went.

Stopped at Oroville for a look around. Lots of cool old buildings there



















Rode into Chico and had a look around. Saw a Harley/Buell shop, so I thought I would stop in and have a look around. My old bomber jacket is getting pretty worn, and I thought if I could find a jacket, I might replace it. So I walk in, and within 2 minutes I remembered why I don’t usually buy stuff at Authorised Harley dealers.( I usually support the small independent shops when I can) The guy asks me what he can do for me, I ask him about jackets. He says anything in particular, I ask if he has anything with Buell on it. He goes into a big spiel about not since they shut down Buell, and how they sold everything 2 years ago for discount prices and maybe I should try online. Then he walks away into his office ( no other customers in the place) leaving me standing in the showroom……. by myself. So I look around at jackets…… by myself. Saw a couple that might have done the trick, and walked out. On the way out past his office ( he didn’t look up) I said “ I might have bought a jacket, you know”, and he says “ pardon me?” So I says “ Have a nice day” and smiled at him.

What was THAT about?

Anyhow, I looked around Chico a bit more, and decided to head South. Saw a sign that said Durham, and thought, “I ain’t never been to Durham before.” So I took the off ramp, and road into Durham, where I stopped at the park for a look around. I am sitting there looking at my paper road map, and an older guy in a Durham town truck pulls up and asks me if I am lost. I told him in order to be lost, you have to have first had a destination. He smiles and I tell him that I am just looking around and trying to figure out where I am going next. Well, turns out he has been around Durham all his life and you can go here or there, but you have to cross the river and the bridge was put in in 1965 and before that there was a reaction ferry but they took that out and now there is another ferry further north but all it does now is sit on the beach cause no one uses it anymore cause everyone comes down to the bridge and where did you say you were from young fella and where do you want to go?
It was great.

So I head West on “Old Ferry road“( I am not kidding, look it up) towards the bridge, and turn at Ordbend, and head south down hwy 45. Stopped where the road once again crossed the Sacramento River


Stopped in Princeton Ca for a bit of a look around, and headed towards Calusa.
Whole lotta farming going on around there.





Got a room at the Calusa Motel, walked around Calusa, found the grocery store, and called it a day.
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Old 12-07-2011, 09:40 PM   #57
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Hey Brian, Love the way you made those panniers work. It is just great to see what a thinking brain can do with a challenge. Lovin it so far.
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Old 12-07-2011, 10:28 PM   #58
L.B.S.
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Heh, heh.

Rock on, Williams Lake dood




Wish you all the best on your dream journey. Safe travels!
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:49 PM   #59
BC Brian OP
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Day Dec 7 118 kms Calusa Ca to Sacramento Ca

Left the Calusa Motel and looked around town a bit. I stopped to ask a guy if there was a museum in town, and he told me no, but Williams has a nice one. I guess he thought I talked funny, so he asks me where I am from, so I tell him Canada, and he says “yeah? where in Canada?”, so I tell him central BC, so he says “Yeah? where in Central BC?” Turns out he has a couple of boats and he has boated up the coast to Alaska, and he has pulled his other, smaller boat through Williams Lake a number of times to go fishing and hunting. Had a nice chat with him, and carried on to Williams Ca, where the nice museum is. Only… its closed for the holidays (Nov 15th through Jan 28th)
I had been looking online at hostels, as I had never stayed at one before and figured it might be a good way to A) stay somewhere cheaper than motels and B) meet some fellow travellers. I googled “Sacramento + Hostel” and the “Sacramento Hostel” popped up. So away I went to Sacamento.

Found the place no problem. Its an old mansion built in the 1880s by some rich merchant. It has been restored and became a hostel some time ago.






Met some interesting people, like the old English guy who liked to talk and had been travelling every winter since he was in his 20s and had been to almost every country in the world except Russia and Japan. There is a reason he hadn’t been to those countries, but I couldn’t quite figure out what it was.

And the older british lady who told me that the most of the borders in Canada had been closed and if you wanted to go from Winnipeg to the US, you had to first go to Toronto and cross there. She wouldn’t believe me that there were LOTS of border crossings and they weren’t closed.

And the lady who when I said Hello to her informed me quit bluntly that she didn’t talk to strangers, and then sat there and talked to herself for quite a while.

But, lots of people to talk to. Travellers, people who need a place to stay while they are relocating to Sacramento and trying to find work. There is a real mixed group and I am really enjoying being here.
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Old 12-08-2011, 06:04 PM   #60
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congrats on your trip... looks like a great start!
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