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Old 10-08-2012, 10:23 PM   #121
Foot dragger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calimusjohn View Post
I have been lucky. I keep meeting young "Thinkers" in older model bodies. I have also met some ancient folks wasting away inside young bodies. We sometimes get hung up on the - Coulda' - Shoulda' - Woulda's - It's our choice. If we did the safe, sane, responsible things at all times . . . life would be meaningless. I have been called: reckless, crazy, suicidal, childish, irresponsible, stupid, spendthrift, and all of their relatives listed in Roget's . I have been fully qualified at certain times to own each of those titles. But one word(s) never spoken is: Bored or Boring.
Enough B.S. I'm going riding. John M.
I know what you mean,so many people of all ages sit and watch TV,or some other such non moving non involving time taker upper,watching just isnt a sport I dont think. People LOVE football,but would they play it? Uh no might get hurt.
Ive beat myself up pretty thouroghly racing flattrack,trail riding,mt biking,playing soccer,etc.
But its all been fun and Im not done yet,I just try to be a little more careful. With out some risk and action and new pursuits...............life is awful quiet.
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Old 10-08-2012, 10:30 PM   #122
BTL
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53 here...great read

I recently read...if you make to 50 you no longer have to grow up....thats so me.

I am delighted and inspired by this RR...you always seem to have a great smile in your pics.
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Old 10-08-2012, 10:37 PM   #123
calimusjohn OP
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Crater Lake Rim Ride

What a great two days! Doug Massey finally arrived at my home. He only missed one turn on the map I drew. That missed turn took him up a terribly eroded dirt hill to a hermit like neighbor's front gate. The hermit pointed the way to my place, but would not let Doug come past the gate to a level turn around spot. Yep. He dropped his new VStrom while turning across DEEP ruts. Only broke the left front turn signal. I broke the same one on my last "Drop". It may be a design flaw.
We swapped lies and stuffed ourselves with spaghetti. I noted that Doug's eyes were drooping by 10:00 P.M. Of course, his body is still on Georgia time. We called it a day.
Today was a Calendar day - temperature in the 60's - blue sky with one small abandoned cloud - no wind - the smell of pine trees in the air. We quickly covered the 50 or so miles from my home to the entrance to Crater Lake National Park. If you can get a "Senior's" Park card - do it. Or an "Annual" pass - saves big bucks. We carved our way up to the rim. Had soup served in a hollowed loaf of bread at the cafe. Then began the 32 mile road that circles Crater Lake.
Crater Lake is just that. It is a 1,900 foot deep lake inside the Crater of an extinct volcano. Way back when - this volcano popped its top, leaving behind one big hole. Over the ensueing years, melting snow and rainwater have filled the basin to within about a thousand feet of the rim. The basic rim is around 7,000 feet above sea level. Watchman and Scott Mt. as part of the rim, stick up to the 9,000 foot marks. The road is a well maintained two lane asphalt ribbon that ties the look out pull-offs together. Spectacular views of 1,000 foot vertical walls at your feet, or mirrored reflections of the lake's opposite walls abound. Professional photographers spend countless hours here recording the changing views. You can complete the circle in an hour or in a day. There are overwhelming views that each person responds to differently. A sidenote. Each year a "Rim Marathon" is run. Hundreds of runners from around the world complete the 26 mile course that has incredible hills to climb and down hills to gasp at. At 7,000 feet it is a trial.
As Doug and I were saying our Goodbyes - a two up touring bike passed by. Doug headed west towards the coast and I headed east towards home.
A few miles later, I caught up to the tourers as they pulled into a viewpoint. I was pleased to meet and talk with Dazzer and Leigh. They left England a while ago. Crossed Europe - crossed Russia - Rode south from Prudhoe Bay and are headed for Tierra del Fuego! Search "Dazzer" on Ride reports. He has a teaser started. They are on Facebook and he has a blog also. Drat! I had to go home and not follow their tracks.
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Old 10-08-2012, 11:24 PM   #124
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Response

1. 8trackmind - House broken?
2. Foot dragger - You sure have some nice toys.
3. AK Bike - Look forward to a future meet.

4. Off Center - Love your use of Math.

5. Woodly1069 - I'm not sure about: "how it SHOULD be done."

6. PRSDRAT - Time you took the lead. . ..

7. Darkhyper - Check BTL's "Age Guide".

8. BTL - At age 50, you don't have to grow up . . . WHOOPEE! ! !

These things are addictive! JM
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Old 10-08-2012, 11:56 PM   #125
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I,ll contact you if I can ride out next summer and we could swap. Lies , I envy you folks located a little further south our riding season is about over, still getting out but its time to winterize .
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:05 PM   #126
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Day Off

Day Off
This is a copy of a letter I sent. You will note that I can change facts as necessary to fit the story line.
Hi. This is the first time I have had a good WiFi connection this trip. I got up this morning with a body full of complaints, After conferring with the Body Managementt Department, it was a unanimous decision to take a day off and just go Blah. Well, do laundry and Blah. Laundry is finished. I had yesterday's B.L.T. for breakfast and a bowl of oatmeal with raisins for lunch. I'm now trying to gather up enough energy to ride 15 miles to the nearest sit down cafe. I may even do the pizza routine. I'm tired of hamburgers and cheese burgers.
I don't seem to recover from setbacks quite as fast as in the past. I need to set some limits on each day or reduce the goal on the next day if I go over. I do like to travel. It would be a treat to share it. Typing a Recap helps, but is not as good as a fire ring gabfest.
I really liked Canada and the Yukon. Northern Alaska - not so much. I somehow was expecting more dramatic scenery. After reading umpteen books on and about Alaska referring to muskeg and tundra, I should have known better. The Denali area is pretty spectacular. But, too many people/tourists pushing and shoving in the midst of a million acres of wide open space. Living a mile from my nearest neighbor for 18 years has my expectations a bit warped. The congestion and the need to rush is alien. That probably sounds strange coming from someone who rides 500 plus miles many days. I cover a lot of ground, but I don't rush. Hard to explain. I sit down to eat. I stop to gawk. I talk to locals. I feel the country around me. Too many people about and I feel intruded upon as the country shies away from communicating directly with me.
Here is an example. Have you ever watched a river rock breathe? Most folks haven't. Find a comfortable place to sit - lying down is even better - pick out a rock that is just poking his/her head above the water's surface. Wait and watch. The rock will grow in size as it takes a deep breath - just before it sinks beneath the surface. It emerges and takes another deep breath. No two are exactly alike. Hypnotizing to me. . ..
I have mailed my check for the Class Reunion. Now need to get home and finish up summer tasks before heading to the boat in Mexico for the winter. I won't leave Oregon before voting day. Hopefully I won't get snowed in. I an watching it snow on a nearby mountainside as I write this.
Tomorrow I will continue south to Anchorage and the Kenai Peninsula. End of the Road in Homer - beckons.

Fire Weed - Official Flower of the Yukon - seen everywhere


Are you missing a cap?

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Old 10-10-2012, 09:46 PM   #127
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Bluhduh Homer Bound

Homer Bound
After a day of laundry and rest, I scooted the 32 miles back to Denali for pizza. Not the greatest, but not the worst. Tourist town pizza. Next morning - new adventures.
It was raining as I packed the bike. Low clouds masked the view of the mountains. I was back in a single layer world. The thermometer read in the fifties, but the rain and the wind chill factor changed it to - cold. My route followed a grey tunnel of falling water, that was occasionally blown sideways by a passing car or truck. I had the heated grips and electric vest running all day to stay semi-comfortable. There are some days when riding inside a cage is preferable.
I hit the road at 9:00 A.M. I figured I would have breakfast at the first cafe I spotted. A Subway sandwich shop provided breakfast at 1:00 P.M. It was the first eating spot of the day!
The route south from Denali runs through Anchorage. My Atlas states there are 291,826 residents. I didn't see that many, perhaps they were inside sheltering from the rain. I did see airplanes. And more and more airplanes. The highway skirts the airport and exposes hundreds of single engine aircraft parked everywhere. I have never before seen so many single engine aircraft in one day. Wow ! There has to be a couple of them for sale - and at bargain prices. Hmmmn.
I passed the Lithia Automobile dealership. (It is a biggie in Oregon.) I wondered about the Worthington Ford dealership - I remember Cal Worthington and his dog - tiger - elephant - chimpanzee - etc. - "Spot" from Los Angeles T.V. ads. Small world.
With good roads and passing lanes strategically located, progress was swift. The Kenai Peninsula looks a lot like Tierra del Fuego at the tip of South America. (No, I flew over T.D.F.) Mountains of all descriptions graced with glacial icing accent the route. Clouds masked some of the rivulets feeding creeks forming rivers that eventually plunge into the fiords of the coast. I can imagine how spectacular it is on a clear day.
Like usual, I initially thought I would stop along the way and make it a two day run to Homer. Ha! No Motels. There were Luxury Suites advertised along the way. With the little Blue & White Signs? Not on your tintype! These sported the full sized horizon blocking bill boards. Apparently money talks the talk, even in The Last Frontier.
I arrived in Homer, damp and hungry. I stopped at the Best Western entering town. If they had a single room, the rate was $179.00 plus tax. Fortunately, they did not have one. I searched for Tom Bodette and his "light in the window". The light must have blown out, because I couldn't find it. I settled into a room at Baluga Lodge. Only $139.00 and tax. Nice room. Fish and chips with a glass of iced tea made Din Din. $25.00 plus tip.
Next morning I planned to check out the ferrys down on the "Spit". The "Spit" is what the locals call the "Spit"of land projecting into the bay. Now, who thought that up? Why the ferry? Well, the T.V. weather guessers were reporting heavy rain for the next five days. The Hostess at the Motel tried to get Ferry scheduling information off the Internet and finally gave up - it is confusing the way it is listed.
One way or another I am heading south. I may have to backtrack to Tok (Toke remember?) in order to get to the Cassier Highway. Alaska is kind of like the L.A. Basin in naming Highways. Nobody calls The Coast Highway - Highway 101. Here - it is ALCAN, Dempster, Dalton, Haul, Cassier, Dead End, No Exit, and today - no kidding, "Gravel Road." It is midnight - I quit.

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Is this a Happy Wet person?
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Old 10-10-2012, 10:07 PM   #128
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Great read.
If you ever come by Gilroy, Ca let me know. You have a place to stay if needed.
I am only 60 have MS, arthritis, badly broken ankle that limits my mobility, etc etc.
Ride as much as I can but nothing like you. Keep it up and hope to meet you some day.
Ride safe.
RC
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Old 10-11-2012, 11:56 AM   #129
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Headed Inland

Headed Inland
At some time in the past I read, or heard that there was a sign reading, "End of the Road" in Homer. If it's there, it must be by Tom Bodette's place. I couldn't find it either. I just wanted a picture of me next to it. It would be a great picture to put on the Urn.
It was spitting rain as I went out the "Spit" towards the Ferry Terminal. I passed fishing boats, fishing guides, fishing outfitters, fish shacks, fish restaurants, and a very damp, camp site or two. At the Terminal, a sign on the door read , "Closed. Will open when Ferry arrives tomorrow." I scratched up under my helmet for awhile and pondered some before heading back towards the shore.
I figured that riding in the rain was better than standing around in it. Turned out that I only got rained on twice during the entire Day's ride and they were of short duration - unlike yesterday's blinding downpours. So much for weather forecasts.
Once again, the Kenai Peninsula is a photographer's dream. I threaded my way through a gauntlet of parked cars wherever there was access for fishermen to the water's edge. Heavy vegetation adjacent to the asphalt limit's the parking. When I broke away from the coast, the mountains leaped up alongside and strained my neck with the constant twisting and turning required to see even a portion of their anatomy. Lookout - pullouts often had information signs pointing out hard to see aspects - like a line of trees and bushes that once defined the edge of a man made water way traversing miles - that provided the power to blast away the mountain in search of gold a hundred years ago. Glaciers scrape parts of the mountains bare and deposit the scrapings elsewhere. Plants then adapt to the differences and provide maze like patterns that baffle the senses.
I had to ride up "Portage Valley" to "Portage Lake". I was born and raised in Portage, Indiana. The lake had icebergs floating in it.
I survived a second crossing of Anchorage and headed out Highway 1. The next 150 miles held - no cafes - no stores - no gas stations - etc. I had to break into my hoard of Energy Bars. I finally found a small Deli. I ordered the $12.00 "Dagwood" sandwich. About 20 minutes later, I was handed a sadwich much smaller than the 6" Special at any Subway's. The Deli staff had no idea who Dagwood Bumstead was/is. Good Grief.
I found a Lodge that doesn't show on the maps and got a room for $115.00. The room in the Lodge vs. the Tent in 30 degree temperature . . . . Hmmmmn. I keep listing prices - not that they matter much - I have no choice, but to pay them. Maybe they will help someone in their Alaska trip planning. O.K. One more price - sign: "Walk-in Haircuts $18.00". My helmet isn't that tight - yet - I skipped the shearing.
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Old 10-11-2012, 12:19 PM   #130
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I think most of us appreciate the $cost$ info. Thanks, ride on brother.
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Old 10-11-2012, 02:12 PM   #131
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Great story-telling!

I grew up in Alaska, leaving in 1974. When I left, Portgage Glacier was visible from the parking lot, with ice from one side to the other. I went back in the 90's and took the boat out to the glacier. (think it was the 90's). Around that time was when the glacier had retreated far enough back that land was being exposed for the first time in thousands of years. That, and looking at how nature was reclaiming the barren rock between the parking lot and the glacier was extremely interesting.
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Old 10-11-2012, 02:43 PM   #132
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Mate your "barkin mad" long may you stay so. Great RR cheers Spud
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Old 10-11-2012, 08:18 PM   #133
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The Daunting Dalton

Note: The road repairs were actually after reaching Coldfoot and then heading south.

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Old 10-11-2012, 10:32 PM   #134
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Photos - Homer - Kenai

Welcome to Homer




No More Road


Horizontal line at top of white post = old water flume route


The Kenai


More Kenai
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Old 10-11-2012, 10:47 PM   #135
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Portage Valley

Kenai sunshine


Just another everyday view


Portage Lake


Still Portage Lake


Feeders


A maze of plants


Forty shades of green
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