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Old 01-01-2011, 06:44 PM   #1
VxZeroKnots OP
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Talking I'll See You When I See You. A potential Baja adventure.

"I let a filthy mat of hair grow over my body, and donned the skin of a lion and roamed the wilderness."
-The Epic of Gilgamesh

Prologue:

Control is an illusion, an idea, a simple image we have framed for ourselves. Perhaps a better image would be influence; as that is the most we are capable of in our attempts to shape our surroundings. Admittedly the complexity and uncertainty of this alternate image holds a lesser attraction than the idea that we are in charge.
The initial plan was to break from home on a trip around the American Southwest for the same purpose one embarks on any journey; because we’ve convinced ourselves it is necessary. The plan changed with the season, phone calls crossed the continent, ideas evolved, the draw of entering another country became too strong to resist. The off road adage goes something along the lines of, “If you think you are about to crash, throttle it. One of two things will happen, you will ride out of it, or you’ll arrive at the inevitable sooner.”

This idea about sums up the extent of the human brain’s capability to influence our reality, interpersonal relationships, and our future; uncertainty ultimately prevails. The harder you try and control something is directly proportional to the size of the explosion if things go awry. That being said, people came and went, time passed, and snow arrived in Durango Colorado.







It looks like I won’t quite be leaving on the bike from home after all. I don’t possess the desire of some inmates to brave ice and snow, I’ve spent enough of my life there on two wheels; not this time. Sensibility finds odd times to sink its fangs into my actions, and the truck will be leaving the station tomorrow, bike in the back for time being, until I reach the jump off point. Follow along if you like, a new year is upon us I’m going to try and not waste this one. It is time to head somewhere warmer, where ever that may be; i miss this:

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Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.

VxZeroKnots screwed with this post 01-03-2011 at 10:37 PM
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Old 01-01-2011, 08:01 PM   #2
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Best of luck! In
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Old 01-01-2011, 08:13 PM   #3
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Try to stay Warm!

Good Luck
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Old 01-02-2011, 08:48 AM   #4
VxZeroKnots OP
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It's currently -9 outside, bike is loaded, personal junk is loaded, human is caffeinated. Next stop Superior Arizona. Hit it.

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I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure
Quote:
Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.
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Old 01-02-2011, 10:47 AM   #5
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What an elegant start to your journey, I look forward to more.

Enjoy riding in warmer weather, and be safe.




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Old 01-02-2011, 11:27 AM   #6
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I will try to influence my decision to read this .
Great writing, and if only we could influence the weather.
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Old 01-03-2011, 01:27 PM   #7
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Sparkles goes to the desert.

Act One:

I gripped her tightly with my knees, hands loose so they didn’t tire. Breathing hard, panting, chasing the rabbit, eyes locked ahead. She bucked and shrieked underneath me, we’d never been here before, and we’d never been this fast. Not like this at least, I didn’t even know her name. Her soul coursing through my bones in the form of vibration, a shutter, and then a hard hit; we gained speed to get the rabbit. We had yet to see on common enough terms to speak. In twenty minutes that would change, I knew it would come when she was ready, when she wanted me to know who she really was.



The day started frigid yesterday, with my roommate helping load bike and gear into the truck (aptly named "The Shark") where I would drive to his old job site in Arizona he’d left a week before. Some other friends stayed behind, new ones would be made. Before crossing the state line a truck of the same make and model as my own went to pass on the ice crusted roads. Too much throttle at the wrong time, the back end kicked out and caught dry pavement. eff, six thousand pounds of steel began swapping ends in front of me. Through my busted ass Colorado windshield I tensed as all four found dry pavement. The truck ahead violently lurched onto the leading two wheels as they caught traction on the dry asphalt. This circus continued down the bank on the side of the road into the ditch. A four foot vertical buck jumped the angry truck onto its side. I slowed as I passed, not making any aggressive moves as to avoid a similar fate. Is anyone else stopping? Its only them and me, why do I never take the interstate, why do I stick to back roads, why does this shit always happen right in front of me. eff. Destination and bike in the back, or not, I have to stop I have to turn around.

I did so and pulled The Shark to the side of the road, blocking traffic with my own truck to shield myself and those I am soon to meet for the extraction and inevitable standing around. Damn the camera, inattention in a situation like this is how people die and crosses and flowers grow on the side of the road. The driver door, being the only one facing the sky, would not open either with them pushing from the inside or me from without. It was only a flop, not a true roll and shit I’d been in situations like this many times before, only when off roading it was sort of expected. Stay put I say, hold on, and I’ll have you out in a jiff. Out came the strap which was gingerly hooked to their frame rail and then quickly to my hitch. Put it in four high, take up the slack, gently now, gently. With a silent, slow plop, they were back on all four. Two occupants egress from somehow minimally damaged truck. There is shaking and crying; everyone is safe, the recent feet of snow saved their sheet metal and possibly their lives. I wonder if the cab was twisted and jamming the door or they just forgot to unlock them, mental note: ask next time. They have a cell signal and I don’t. All seems to be well enough, so I continue on uneventfully until I spy a Ural Dealership sign on St. John Arizona. I had to turn around and get a shot.



I arrived in Superior that night, right as Tim was pulling back into his drive from a weekend trip to his fiancé’s place. We swapped hugs, handshakes, and stories as we unloaded bikes and bags. Inside I met Josh, the other roommate, Boy, was MIA. Their commute to work would be regarded as Hell by some and Heaven by you and I. Boy purchased my ’06 DRZ 400 for that purpose, he dubbed it Black Rain. What a strange life we lead. I took Tim’s CRF450, which goes by the tag Smoke And Mirrors, around the block NOGATT. Third gear wheelies on pavement in January wearing a t-shirt were fun. Beers, Sleeping bags and awake at 6AM. Time for the morning commute. We all saddled up on our respective bikes, individually we proceeded with our ignition rituals. And then, were off to their Job site, an extension of a multiuse trail system; except I was on vacation.

Tim/"Smoke and Mirrors", Josh, and my whip:


Boy and "Black Rain":


After an extra-trail excursion following steep hills, sand, rocks, washes, and cactus. Three of us managed to haul Tim and his bike back onto the path, everything was copasetic and the sun crested the hills towering above.



Taking a breath following the exertion of hauling 200 pounds of “I hate people and want to kill them” back onto the trail Tim looked as my Bass boat orange paint that came on the 2007 640A I have now owned less than a month, yet had never really taken off road and said, “Look, it sparkles.” From a man of colorful language, she told me her name. Sparkles.

I promised myself I’d take it easy, play it safe. I never planned on chasing a 450CRF through some of the roughest two track I’d ever ridden. The 640A surpassed all expectations, I couldn’t hold the wheel of the 450, but it did stay in my cross hairs. I couldn’t bunny hop and flick about like the XR250, but I made it through with but a single dab in two hours of riding. Ha, fucking Sparkles, like all two wheeled contraptions she wants me dead; I love her.



I'll post more later, I'm whooped sorry for any type-o's.
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I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure
Quote:
Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.

VxZeroKnots screwed with this post 02-14-2011 at 09:06 PM
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Old 01-03-2011, 03:09 PM   #8
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:34 PM   #9
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Eh? Starting Heidi

Here is the trail we rode to which the Inferior Arizona gang work on for the BLM:

Jah Shua filming their work with a flip cam;



Tim giving the salute, and Danny peeking about;



We had a hard time getting the Swedish Pre-Mix powered jack hammer running. She didn't even have a carb, it just had a fuel screw which dumped gas into a lump of foam over the intake-a foamerator if you will. She hadn't been run in a bit and was the victim of a bit of condensation. A bit of work and Heidi eventually started hammering away. The prospect of wrenching on something new led me to forfeit my observer status and help with the project. Here Tim gives Heidi some hell.


You can thank these folks for Arizona single-track, and a bit up in Washington as well.



Awesome desert scenery.


I love cacti.


Heidi Hole for Blastin.


Later on I Rode back into town with Josh and spent the rest of the day chilling out, doing some light maintenance and packing. Who knows what happens tomorrow. Maybe ride some single track here, maybe go towards Mexico; anything could happen.
__________________
I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure
Quote:
Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.

VxZeroKnots screwed with this post 02-14-2011 at 09:08 PM
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Old 01-04-2011, 07:01 PM   #10
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Real long day, lots of fun involvong ufos, chupacabra, being lost, dog fights in the sky, and A flat tire. Real update to follow.
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I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure
Quote:
Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.
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Old 01-05-2011, 03:10 PM   #11
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UFOs, Washboard, and the Chupacabra.

They tore the sky above to pieces, their gray bodies slicing the through atmosphere. The sound of their engines sounded as if it was shredding apart the very fabric of the Universe. Every once in a while flares would be fired, faux missile launches perhaps. Apart from watching the dogfight above, courtesy of the taxpayers of the US of A, I had some final packing, loading, and tweaking to do. Before the impromptu air show I’d enjoyed a short phone call with my good friend Ryan it went something along the lines of:

“Hey man what’s up?”

“Ohhh nothing.”

“Cool, well I’m in Arizona, want to hang out this weekend?”

“Sure, work has been slow, show up whenever.”

The thing is Ryan lives in San Luis Obispo California; time to make some miles. I rolled down to the coffee shop where Josh was chilling and grabed some caffeine and brekkie. I don’t remember the name of it but it must be the only one in Superior and it is good stuff, check it out sometime. We said our good-byes and I hit the road down highway 177 towards Kelvin AZ. The tarmac twisted and rolled through the decomposing mountains.



Eventually the Ray copper mine swallowed the monoliths on my left, jaws agape consumed the sky itself.



I pulled onto the Kelvin-Florence highway, and mirth welled up in me as I slapped through the gears on the 640A. Soon enough, gravel groaned beneath me as the pavement had ended. Long sweeping turns abounded and road conditions were smooth, fast, and open; absolutely perfect. A smile consumed my face every time the back wheel broke out. I love getting sideways and I was as happy as could be drifting along this ribbon cut through the lonely southwest.



Pulling into Florence Arizona meant traffic, people, cities, frustration, and wasted time. Did I mention I hate cities? I do. I wasn’t free of the gridded, thoughtless, scourge until I reached Maricopa where I managed to somehow get temporarily lost. I don’t know how you commuters do it, traffic sucks and I stuck to two lane roads at that; the Interstate would get me yet.
Eventually I made it out of town and the road led into the expanse of the Sonora National Monument. Traveling highway 238 provided some great sights as jagged rock stabbed from the valley floor as if trying to rend the clouds in two as they made their way to Colorado where it is reportedly snowing.




I longed for dirt though, and jumped on Interstate 8 for a twenty mile burn from Gila Bend to Sentinel Road.

Exiting the interstate ear ringing and scared out of my wits I headed north through black peaks guarding the desert silently as the sun arced towards the west. The feeling of openness consumes you out here and it is impossible to not think of how small physically we really are. A cutoff through Agua Caliente brought me through some interesting settlements one advertising “Children of Light” being less than two miles away. I gunned it in the opposite direction.
Eventually the road turned to dirt, and strange objects appeared in the sky hovering in place; It was unnatural, damn UFOs.

Road conditions worsened and washboard and sand became the norm. I cross rutted the bike a few times and it got bad headshake at speed, thankfully I was able to stay relaxed, on the gas, and upright. I began to wonder if I made the right decision being out here alone, if I went down it could be very serious due to the remoteness. A mechanical meant walking and or sleeping out here, and while I don’t mind camping there was no cover or secluded areas to slink off into. The head shake kept coming back and the bike really was starting to become a handful I pulled over to let some air out of the tires as I had been running them at 25psi the day before to avoid pinch flats. Lo and behold the front had gone flat which explained why the bike was handling like shit, I had been fooled into thinking it was the sand.

Preparing to remove the wheel I decided to get the valve ready to come out of the rim first and when I removed the cap silt poured out; interesting. I removed the valve core and it was clogged with silt. I fiddled with it for a while and reinstalled it a few pumps from the hand pump and it seemed like the tube was holding. Removing the pump head from the valve stem resulted in the air spitting back out into my face. Pulling the core from a spare tube had me back in business as the sun set a coyote howled in the distance.
The road and Sparkles after she was aired up again:


Back in business I rode along while rabbits and coyotes darted in front of me. Some unidentified small critter sprinted out in front of me but it didn't seem like Chihuahua territory, so I guess that one goes in the Chupacabra file; I hear they’re everywhere out here. I wound my way into Wellton Arizona where I bought a meal and a hotel. I’d meant to make it to Kofa Wildlife Refuge to camp, but It would have to wait.
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I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure
Quote:
Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.

VxZeroKnots screwed with this post 02-14-2011 at 09:11 PM
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Old 01-06-2011, 08:51 PM   #12
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I awoke stuffy nosed and groggy. Apparently I am either allergic to something in the motel or town, and most certainly was dehydrated. Note to self: Drink mo water. I went for breakfast and got packed up in time to leave the Desert Inn before checkout. Today was going to be a little shorter of a ride than the previous day, as I only planned on making Quartzsite AZ.

I love old signs:


I followed old highway 80 towards Yuma jumping on I-8 before I was able to take 95 north. Lots of folks suggested checking out the old prison in Yuma but honestly things like that don't interest me near as much as landscapes so I headed out looking for some dirt.

Eventually I came across another "UFO" like the one from the previous day. There appeared to be a rather elaborate base station where the tether ran to. I'm not sure if it had something to do with the nearby Yuma Proving Ground where shells could be heard impacting the desert floor. I even saw an MRAP type thing rallying through the desert at speed towing a trailer.


I pulled off the tarmac into the southernmost entrance to the Kofa Wildlife Preserve and the route turned to gravel free of washboard. The park has a 25mph speed limit which I may or may not have followed. I passed through a tourist trap type ghost town and human sightings became more rare.

Here was the best Ipod pick of the day:




Black volcanic rock freckled the beige sands and my path, Castle Dome Mine Road, turned to two track. Bucking and rolling over the desert floor, Quail scattered from the brush as I rode past.




Eventually the route got rougher and I was glad I had tested my limits a few days before as the bike was loaded now and most certainly more top heavy and undersprung. The suffering on the pavement melted away and I loved every minute spent out in the preserve.


The Flora was looking sharp.


As was the silhouetted landscapes which abound in the preserve. The track went between whooped out gravel washes which were seemingly bottomless and sand like. In between the washes the track was generally smooth and fast with few rocks which allowed me to look around as long as I kept my eyes peeled for potential pinch flats and hazardous terrain. I was caught off guard a time or two but lucked out, who could keep their eyes on the trail with views like this?


Eventually I wound up on King road where two volunteers were painting a road sign. We talked about the park, the wildlife and the various attractions. They asked me about Colorado, and the lady was particularly interested in our native Elk.



I really wanted to spend more time in the ruggedly beautiful park but wanted more to get to San Luis Obispo. Partially this was so I could turn my journey south but I was also concerned about the longevity of the Dunlop 606 I had mounted before departure. Had this trips planning not been executed ad hoc I would have dedicated a few days here. I exited on King Road and after seeing about 50 miles of the dirt the park has to offer I highly recommend you check out the 300 miles of jeep trails the Refuge has to offer, I know I sure will. Remember to tread lightly while you are there!


I rolled into Quartzsite which was a sea of RV's and snowbirds. I ate at the Subway and shredded some internet before heading to Hi Jolly BLM camp area where the sun set and I put up my tent hoping to be adopted by one of the many RV's staying there.







Unfortunately despite my best efforts none of the surrounding RVers needed another friend and I retired to my tent as the moon dipped low and the revelers around me did their best to imitate what could only be described as the sounds of wild creatures devouring their young. This lasted late into the night.

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I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure
Quote:
Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.

VxZeroKnots screwed with this post 02-14-2011 at 09:12 PM
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Old 01-06-2011, 09:33 PM   #13
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I'll See You When I See You

Great photos, you have an eye for it. Like your style dude. Ride on.
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Old 01-06-2011, 11:05 PM   #14
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We were just outside of Barstow....

Day three update to come...

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I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure
Quote:
Originally Posted by v8toilet
Of course the bike doesn't exist, this entire forum is here because the right bike doesn't exist but the right people do, and they make the trip anyway.
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Old 01-07-2011, 07:15 AM   #15
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Great stuff, keep it coming!
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