A Road King and a MegaMoto storm down the PCH

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by ViperJustin, May 31, 2013.

  1. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    Say hello to BMWJustin. I ride a MegaMoto and frequent the BMW MegaMoto thread in the Road Warriors forum.

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    Say hi to Pete. He rides a Road King and is not on this forum.

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    Pete, some guys we used to fly with, and myself had planned to ride to Sturgis last summer for "the Rallye". Long story short, nothing happened. No one went. I had been dreaming of riding the Oregon and California coast via motorcycle for years. I've driven a majority of the coast in a cage, but never motorcycle. I tried a few years ago, but never even got close to where I wanted to go.

    So a couple weeks after the failed attempt to get to South Dakota, I texted Pete telling him I thought it would be a lot of fun to ride the PCH. He agreed. From that point, planning had begun. Due to the fact that I started going back to college, we would have to wait until after the spring semester was over. As riders know, nine months is a long time to wait for your dream ride (one of them...). Throughout school, I'd sit on the iPhone checking every possible route to make it as interesting as possible. I had also began purchasing some much needed gear that I didn't have yet.

    After lots of talks with Mrs. BMWJustin, we agreed that I could be out for eight days. I know, it's more than a week, but the first and last days were bombing up the highways to make up mileage.

    The plan was simple. Ride from Las Vegas, NV, up to McMinnville, OR to see the Spruce Goose (and the other 80+ aircraft there). Then we'd ride south along the coast all the way to Santa Barbara. Lastly, we'd part ways and head home.
    #1
  2. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    I barely got any sleep. Maybe... three hours? Anyways, I was up at 430 taking a look out at the trees in my neighborhood. Not good. They were being hit by the 20mph winds already. Winds were expected to hit 25-35 in Vegas. And it only got worse the farther up we got that day. We were both ready to go by 630. Butterflies, excitement, nervousness... I was running through a bunch of emotions. This was the first "long" trip for me (and Pete).

    Ready to go:
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    Bikes were clean, topped off, and ready!
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    Mileage check:
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    A couple hundred miles up, in Tonapah.
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    Middle of no where, NV:
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    After being destroyed by 30+ mph headwinds and crosswinds, I needed a break. The MegaMoto has virtually no wind protection. Even Pete's Harley was being thrown around during that day.
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    Walker Lake, just North of Hawthorne.
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    Not only did the 3.4 gallon fuel tank on my MegaMoto need frequent refueling, but I did too.
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    Heading into Reno. The highway here is great. Twists, turns, and things to see, unlike the vast openness of the Nevada desert.
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    Finally heading into Susanville.
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    Day 1 done. We covered 539 miles in 11 hours. The crosswinds and headwinds were torturous at times, but the "boring" part was over. Day 2 coming soon...
    #2
  3. oldmanb777

    oldmanb777 Just say NO to socialism!

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Centennial,Co./ Grand Lake,Co
    :lurk
    #3
  4. bwbeck

    bwbeck Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2011
    Oddometer:
    115
    Location:
    Gallatin Tn
    Sounds like a fun trip.

    Brandon
    #4
  5. doc4216

    doc4216 Chronic High Fiver

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2009
    Oddometer:
    433
    Location:
    Alameda for now
    Subd. This is one of my dream rides also (if I ever get over to the west coast)! Can't wait to read the rest.
    #5
  6. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    We woke up to a balmy 37 degree morning. Luckily, we didn't have any nasty head winds to deal with. But nonetheless, 37 is 37. Neither Pete or I have heated grips, so we had to stop quite a bit to heat our hands on the engine. When I checked the weather on our route up, highs would be around the mid 50s and there was a good storm coming in from the Pacific. Weather reports also said it would be very cold and possibly snowing around Crater Lake.

    Leaving Susanville, Highway 139 is a joy to ride.
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    The views going up the hill were great. However, the views of the oncoming rain wasn't as nice...
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    About 20 miles up Highway 139, we ran into snow. Wet, thick, snow. There was a fresh layer covering everything. Not good. Multiple times, I saw Pete's Harley slip and slide in the slush. And my MegaMoto, weighing in half as much as the Road King, was struggling to keep traction. We powered through. A half hour later, the snow had turned to sleet. Shortly after that, the sun shined through the clouds. We stopped in Adin, and refueled. Pete talked about how the sleet felt like razor blades cutting up his face. I was wearing my Klim Latitude gear, and I didnt feel anything. We both added another layer of clothes and also set our gloves on the cylinder heads of my BMW (A great glove warmer!!!).

    We made our way up to Klamath Falls, OR. We felt fortunate that most of the storms seemed to be to the South. We warmed up in Klamath Falls at the local Wendy's. We checked the weather for Crater Lake. It was a no-go. High of 39 degrees, with heavy snow and rain. Well, maybe next time. We rolled straight up to the Highway 58. Riding over the Cascade Mountains was great. Lots of great twists, turns, and elevation changes. On our way down, we started running into some showers again.

    Somewhere on Highway 58.
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    Showing off my wife's camera bag... A Coach purse......
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    The Dexter Reservoir.
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    The bikes
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    Covered bridge at the Dexter Reservoir.
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    Looking North West, towards the rain.
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    As soon as we got into Eugene, it started to rain. It was steady, all the way up to McMinnville (about 90 miles). We just decided to keep going. Pete was soaked to the bone, shivering, and miserable. I was chilled and my hands and feet were soaked. We ran up the I-5. I could barely see through all the rain splashing up around the truck tires. Every person we passed looked at us as if we were crazy. Well, that may be partially true. Anyways, we finally made it to McMinnville.

    Wet bikes...
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    Proof!
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    I think I was delirious at this point... And my Carhartt sweatshirt was SOAKED!
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    Let the drying begin!!!!
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    And taking loads down to the laundry!
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    Day 2: 35-55 degrees F; Lots of antelope and deer in Northern California; and about 460 miles done, of which 200+ were rain and snow.

    Coming up: The Evergreen Aviation Museum and Lincoln City, OR.
    #6
  7. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    After riding nearly 1000 miles in the rain, snow, wind, sleet, etc, we needed a break. Luckily, we planned to visit the Evergreen Aviation Museum in McMinnville, OR on day 3. Although I've been there once before, I would go back in a second if I had the opportunity. Pete and I both flew on helicopters in the Air Force. We also spent years toying with large scale RC airplanes (read: $$$$). This place is Mecca for anyone who likes anything that flies.

    The main museum is on the left, and the space and rotorhead museum is on the right. In between, a REAL IMax theater... Not a Lie-Max...
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    And of course, the incredible indoor pool. Who WOULDN'T want to ride down those water slides???
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    And the slides...
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    Pete, walking into the candy store.
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    The gorgeous Ford Tri-Motor.
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    Inside the Tri-Motor.
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    There's something about a fully polished airplane that looks amazing. And on top of that, a DC-3. What a beautiful bird.
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    One of my personal favorites. Ive gone through a few of these (RC) planes in my day.
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    I was a Gunner in the Air Force for four years. I couldn't imagine being a Gunner during WWII flying at 30k feet, being attacked from all angles. This aircraft never saw action as it was built just prior to the war ending. Also, being a Jeep guy, I love the original Willys Jeeps that they have throughout the museum.
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    My personal favorite of them all... A Gee Bee Sportster. I love the classic lines on these things.
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    Pete's personal favorites, the J3 Cub and the Grasshopper (Battle-Cub).
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    And this is what Pete is checking out...
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    The Mighty H4 Hercules!
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    We checked out the "Air Racers" movie and also checked out the Space and Helicopter section of the museum. About mid afternoon, we finally rolled out of McMinnville and headed west towards Lincoln City. I spent the last few years of my time in High School in Lincoln City. After 13 years, it has barely changed. We "camped" out at Devil's Lake State Park in one of the Yurts. Its the first time I've ever stayed in one of these and I must say... pretty nice!!!

    Crappy cell phone pics...
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    Inside...
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    And the obligatory advrider food shot.
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    View from Kyllo's restaurant in Lincoln City.
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    That night we enjoyed the campfire and the heat from the Yurt heater. From that point forward, we would aim south and keep going for 1000 miles.

    Day 3: About 60 miles, great food, amazing museum, and drinking beer around the campfire.

    Stay tuned!
    #7
  8. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    For weeks, I watched the weather out there. It was always 55-65 degrees, mostly clear, and nice. Of course, the week we ride down the PCH, it rains, blows, and snows.


    South of Lincoln City, looking north.
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    The bikes...
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    Depot Bay, OR
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    From Cape Foul Weather, just south of Depot Bay
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    Looking down at Otter Rock Beach. I used to surf there quite a bit when I was in high school. Great waves!
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    Lighthouse in Newport, OR. This pic was taken just moments before Pete dropped the camera. Damn you Pete! LOL!
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    The suspect!
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    And from this point forward, cell phone pics. Sorry about that! :cry
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    I love the 101/1. The road just barely hangs on to the side of the mountain in some places.
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    Old picnic table somewhere on the Oregon Coast.
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    The most photographed lighthouse in the world. (Or so they say...)
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    The Sea Lion Caves.
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    Port Orford, OR
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    Southern Oregon
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    Northern California
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    Drooooooooooooooooooooooooool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! MegaMoto HEAVEN!!!!!
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    Yup... I had to do it!
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    The weather held out on Day 4, mostly... The 101 in Oregon is beautiful. But once you drop into Northern California, everything is turned up to "11". The Redwood Highway is a motorcyclist's dream road. It twists and turns through the dense redwood forest. The nerd in me pretended to be flying a speeder bike like in Return of the Jedi.

    Day 4: Cool, mostly sunny, and about 300 miles ridden.
    #8
  9. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,603
    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Looks like the weather is going to start to turn in your favor. :D

    Nice RR. The yurt looked like a good call. Awesome airplane museum! :clap
    #9
  10. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    We woke up to rain and less than one mile visibility. Luckily, all of our clothes were dry and we were ready to go again. Weather reports showed that the rain would only bother us for the first 50 miles. We decided to ride the Avenue of the Giants road. It is a MUST RIDE for anyone who hasn't been around the Redwoods before. The only way I can really explain it is it's like being on a different world. The trees are massive! The forest floor is covered in a blanket of clovers in some areas, and dark shadowy bushes in others.

    A few miles into the Giants road, the rain stopped. Or the massive Redwoods just sucked up all the rain 300 feet above us.... Either way, it was clear enough to bring out the cell phone to get some pics.
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    Pete was in awe. Here he is trying to get his camera out as soon as possible.
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    A Long Way Up...
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    The bikes.
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    Pete... after pushing his bike out a hundred yards into the forest.
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    Big ass log!
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    Another MASSIVE Redwood.
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    Both of our bikes together, end to end, still isnt as wide as the diameter of this tree!
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    Avenue of the Giants
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    You enter tunnels of trees in here. Dark cars without their headlights can be a bit surprising when youre coming around a corner!
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    We finally saw the sun! This is the beginning of Highway 1 on the North side.
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    Crossing over the coastal mountains on Highway 1 is a motorcyclist's dream. Lots of switchbacks, tight corners, altitude changes... And the asphalt was in great condition as well. A bit of a warning though. Watch out for the moss on the road. That stuff is scary when you ride a 440 pound bike like mine. I was in second, third, and fourth gear in most of that ride. I felt my front end slide out a bit on one tight corner. LUCKILY!!!! I kept it upright!!!! And my back tire slipped out a few different times. Normally, when I'm not loaded up, I'm okay with that. But having 50 extra pounds of gear on the bike makes those slips and slides feel unnerving! The first time I heard Pete drag his foot boards, I thought it was over. Sparks trailed 5 feet behind the rear tire and the noise was atrocious. Eight hundred pounds of heavy steel grinding it's pegs off sounded like an aircraft landing without landing gear. And a majority of that road is like the Redwoods-a dark tunnel. After hearing Pete grinding and sanding down his chrome parts a half dozen times, I couldnt help but laugh hysterically every time I heard or seen it. I honestly havent laughed that hard in years. Its just one of those things Ill remember for a very long time. Its one of the things that Ill take away on this trip!

    Once you get through the 20+ miles of spilled spaghetti, you end up here.
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    The right tool for touring???
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    Farther down the 1, we ran into some more rain.
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    Shortly after, it opened up. That cloud bank (fog???) is only about 50 feet above the surface of the ocean. But it looked like we were on top of the world.
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    The lighthouse near Point Arena.
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    Looking South from the same spot.
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    Since the weather was (FINALLY) beautiful, we decided to actually use the tents that we brought along with us. We ended up at Ocean Cove Camp Ground. Overall, we both enjoyed the experience there. It was pretty quiet (for a Memorial Day camp ground) and the views were great!
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    Rocky coves at the Ocean Cove.
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    Not too bad for a cell phone pic...
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    Our view from the campsite.
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    The wind increased to 25 mph that evening. Luckily, we chose a great spot that had lots of raspberry bushes and trees surrounding our site.
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    Pete found out that night that he grabbed his wife's sleeping bag. He was layered in two sweatshirts, his leather jacket, gortex pants, and whatever else he could find. The temps dipped down into the low 40s that night. I was a bit chilled, but not as bad as Pete.

    Day 5 mileage was 180 miles.
    #10
  11. Byork

    Byork Novice

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    240
    Location:
    N. IN
    Very cool :lurk
    #11
  12. ahwarm

    ahwarm Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2012
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Ontario, Ca
    Awesome. I've traveled the 101 to Coos Bay, Oregon in a RV as a kid. Hope to do it on a bike one day.

    Andy
    #12
  13. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    It's a MUST RIDE for any biker. Even though the weather didn't cooperate with us, it was still amazing!!! Id do it again right now if I could.
    #13
  14. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    Yup... More rain on the way. Lots of it.

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    Point Reyes lighthouse parking area. The ride out to Point Reyes reminded me of Ireland. Green, rain, low clouds, rain, skinny roads, rain...

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    Heading down...

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    Down...

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    And farther down. Talk about the ultimate "stairmaster"! I think it is 300 steps from top to bottom. But that doesn't include the flat inclines before or after the stairs.

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    Son of a B****! This is gonna suck!!!

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    Although it took us a good ten minutes to get back up the stairs, we eventually got off of Point Reyes and out of the rain. (Pete also had knee replacement surgery only 8 weeks prior to the trip too... Yikes!!!) Next stop? Lombard Street. It was packed. Lombard St leading up to the famous twisty road was bumper to bumper. Luckily, the police officers directing traffic told us to just bolt up the left side of the road to the front. Without a doubt, that was the steepest road Ive ever been on!!!

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    That's it for day 6. We were rained on again as soon as we left San Fransisco. Poor Pete was soaked to the bone again and we just decided to stop in Santa Cruz instead of Monterey. We didnt want to set up the tents or anything. We just wanted to dry off.

    Day 6: More rain... again... and only about 180 miles.
    #14
  15. sideshowrob

    sideshowrob Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2013
    Oddometer:
    24
    Location:
    South East Idaho
    Awesome! :lurk
    #15
  16. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Oddometer:
    7,925
    Location:
    Huntsville, AL
    Great trip. Riding that part of the west coast is still on my bucket list.

    Thanks for posting:thumb
    #16
  17. Matt

    Matt Dirt Virgin

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,118
    Location:
    Newtown,Sydney
    Love your setup Justin, the MM looks so good. You must be a giant - you make it look quite small.
    Did your Latitude leak when your sweatshirt got wet?
    And lastly - WTF is that piece of Tupperware Pete is wearing on his head. Good thing Harley riders have small brains. :evil
    #17
  18. Fijibubba

    Fijibubba Pavelow guy

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2013
    Oddometer:
    43
    Location:
    Orange County Ca
    It's been six months...dying for another adventure...you have to be ready by now too (especially with a hard semester coming to an end). 5 or 6 days getting lost thru NV, UT, and AZ? Lets leave like yesterday! Hell, I'd even be down for an over nighter thru Zion and the north rim!
    #18
  19. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    I never even finished this RR...... Maybe I'll get to it. Didn't seem to have much interest. Idunno....

    My sweatshirt hung below my jacket, so all the rain seeped up to about my rib cage. Other than that, I was dry. During that day, I only wore basketball shorts under the pants. Didn't feel a single drop from the waste to my ankles. My boots were completely soaked...

    Pete experienced the elements, literally. During the snow storm, he said each snow flake felt like a razor blade cutting his face. And the glasses he wore didn't really help in his situation either. But, he now has a GSA parked next to the RK in his stable, as well as a set of Klim gear and a really nice Schueberth (or whatever it's called) helmet. He loves the Starbucks on this side!

    Hell yeah, Pete. We will be riding Utah next year sometime. No idea when, but it's in the books. Speaking of books, I gotta jump back in!
    #19
  20. ViperJustin

    ViperJustin Retired HH60G Gunner

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    840
    Location:
    Lost Wages, NV
    We woke up and found that our bikes were still there, unmolested. We strapped our gear back onto our bikes and headed south towards Monterey. This was our last day on the coast, as the following day would just be a run back towards home for both of us.

    The pics!

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    Monterey was beautiful, as always. There was some morning clouds in the area, but they lifted out within 15 minutes of our arrival.

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    All clear!
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    We rolled around for about an hour, reminiscing of the experiences we had just had. It was a great trip... Rainy and wet, but still a great trip. The best has yet to come...

    Somewhere just south of Monterey. The 1 was down to a single lane in a few areas. Luckily, we were stopped on this amazing bridge.
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    Although some views were blocked, it was still a dream to ride!
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    A lone flower, clinging to the cliff at Big Sur.
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    A beautiful road to ride...
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    LUNCH TIME!!!! The burgers and soda hit the spot. The view from our table...
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    OUCH!!!!
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    Small tank? Yes. Perfect tool for this ride? Absolutely!!!
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    The populations are rapidly rising here. I was here a couple years ago about the same time and noticed that there's at least three times as many animals!
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    From Big Sur to the Serengeti???
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    Pete was also taking advantage of this picture opportunity.
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    This is the last area where we were supposed to camp, Jalama Beach. However, with 35mph winds gusting to 50mph, we decided otherwise. We rolled back into Lompoc and hoteled it. Wimps... Yeah. But we had a great pizza and a couple of ice cold pitchers of beer to celebrate our "final" day (at Mi Amore Pizza and Pasta).
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    This was supposed to be our spot (on the right). We checked it out, but there was no way to stake down our tents in those sand drifts. And the sand took a couple layers off the epidermis when the helmets came off. Maybe next time...
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    Sorry for not finishing up the RR on a timely manner. But at least I got it done, right???
    #20