Alaska to Mexico... Kind of.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by beauxregard, Dec 2, 2017.

  1. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Alaska to Mexico... Kind of.

    Hi there!

    You might remember me from my last ride report, "my first ever epic adventure" where I spent 6 weeks riding over 7,000 miles thru 12 states last summer visiting all kinds of national parks, unmarked roads, forgotten lakes and million dollar views. You can read that thread here http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/my-first-ever-epic-adventure.1166607/

    Going on a motorcycle adventure all by yourself is something I think every human being needs to experience once in their lifetime. It was so amazing to unplug and recharge. Not to mention not having anybody to argue with whether we should go left or right. No one to say things like "but I don't want to eat there!" Or "your riding too fast!" Or "dont try to feed the wild buffalo!" You get to make all those mistakes all by yourself. Which I believe you learn those things a lot better the hard way.

    Anyways, it's been around a year and a half since I got home, and aside from a few day trips here and there and a trip to Reno for Street Vibrations with the South Beach Snowflakes, the most badass motorcycle gang in all of Lincoln County Oregon, I haven't been on a big adventure, and I'm friggen jonesin to put some dirty off-road miles in. And even tho going on a trip alone was so amazing, and I think everyone needs to do one, and I wouldn't trade that trip for anything, it did get kinda lonely talking to myself around a campfire in the middle of 'heck I don't know where I am' Montana (it's a real place you know) or walking thru Yellowstone National Park watching this guy walking around with his family, or a group of friends on a trip, or this happy couple taking pictures, and then me, walking around in Klim pants and a selfie stick. Then you go home and start all your awesome stories with "Hey! Remember that time I did that thing all alone and none of you were there to whiteness it??" Yeah. I'm not complaining. It truly was the single greatest experience of my life to date. But this time I want someone else to come along. Someone to share the experience with and tell some kick ass 'remember when' stories. And yes, I want someone to hold the camera so I can be in the same picture as my bike with a killer, jaw dropping backdrop.

    This is where my buddy Gabe comes into play. Gabe and I have been friends for about 10 years. He lives in Anchorage Alaska, owns a thriving business he's able to take time off of, has a little money and a lot of adventure in him. Gabe calls me up a couple months ago.
    "Hey Beaux, I want to get an adventure bike. Can you help me find one?"
    So I immediately click on the flea market, send him a couple links, and within days he's on a plane to Washington picking up his new 2012 BMW f800gs and drives it to Seaside Oregon and parks it in my garage.
    "Wanna go to Mexico this winter?" He asks
    "Oh frig yeah bud!"
    So the trip planning begins. And of course by trip planning, I mean we set a ruff date to start (winter 2017 ish) and a general direction to travel (south)

    We narrowed it down to taking the famous Highway 101 from my house in Seaside to Baja. At the bottom I hear there's a ferry to Mazatlan. My dad lives there. Let's meet up with him, and if he's got his 1200GSA up and running he can show us around. Maybe go check out some cool Aztec stuff. Maybe Cruze down into Central America. Maybe not. We'll cross that bridge when we get there.
    "When do you gotta be home by?" I asked
    "Summer 2018" he says.

    Purrrrrrrrfect.

    No plans. No time constraints. Just circle some points of interest on the map. Pack what we think we'll need. Order some new tires. Maybe change some oils. Build an epic playlist on the traveling music box and make the rest up as we go.

    Fast forward to today.

    I'm currently in Kodiak Alaska doing shipyard on my family's commercial fishing vessel. I'm flying out of here on Monday, December 4th at 0900 (WX permitting) I land in Anchorage at 1015 where Gabe will meet me at the bar for a few pre flight drinks. Hop on the plane at 1150 and arrive in Portland at 1630, pick up my truck, and head to my house in Seaside. The next morning we'll pack up our parts that have arrived from Amazon and RevZilla and drive down to Newport, where my bike currently is. After a change of clothes and fluids its wheels down early Wednesday morning taking 101 to LA as fast as we can.

    So that's the general gist of it. I'm pretty pumped to spend this winter and the holidays south of the boarder. I hope you guys follow along and enjoy our journey in search of adventure, epic picture taking opportunities, adversities, breakdowns and rebuilds, and whatever else Mexico will throw at us!! I'll be posting updates here as often as I can and also on my instant gram: @adv_beaux

    P.S. Any advice on where to stay/visit/eat/see/avoid going thru Baja will be greatly appreciated!!
    #1
  2. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    So as far as machines, Gabe has an immaculate BMW F800GS. I don't know what tires he's got on her right now, but we both ordered a set of TKC80's for the front and back. I currently have my conni trail attack 2's on I plan on burning up on the highway down to the boarder. Once we cross over we'll slip on the new shoes.

    Gabe's equipped with a giant loop tank bag and.... Pelican boxes? I think they're pelican boxes on the back. He's got the fancy ride with the heated grips, super wide gushy seat and tall windshield. I took this bike out for a rip down to cannon beach a while ago before I flew up to Alaska. She's one comfortable toy. image.jpeg Im excited to put a few miles on her and see how she handles off-road compared to my bike.

    I got a 2015 KTM 1190 Adventure with a wolfman luggage tank bag, which I friggen LOVE, touratech boxes in the back which have been beat to hell and still perform. I normally got that big red north face bag on, but will most likely leave that at home and just have my little weather proof Grundens backpack strapped in front of my 3 gallon fuel and 1 gallon water rotopax. Me and this girl have a very special relationship, and there isn't too much that can come between us. image.jpeg
    We're now 2 days away from GO-TIME and the clock can't tick down fast enough!!!
    #2
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  3. chudzikb

    chudzikb Been here awhile

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    In to see how the F800 holds up. Great plans, great ideas!
    #3
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  4. docwyte

    docwyte Long timer

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    Looking forward to reading about your trip
    #4
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  5. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Day 1: 12/6/2017

    So a quick rundown over the last couple days;

    The WX in Kodiak calmed down enough for me to catch my flight to Anchorage, where Gabe was already waiting for me. Made our flight to Portland where my mom picked us up and gave us a ride to my truck. Ripped over to Seaside, got unpacked and repacked, Gabe was able to install his new license plate and throttle lock.

    That night I figured, since we're leaving the country in a few days and all, I ought to check my passport and make sure it's still valid. Guess what?!?! It expired in AUGUST!!!!!!!!! Frig!! Now what??? I mean I could have checked it a few months ago when we decided to do this trip, but that would just make too much sense.

    I found a website called expeditemypassport.com sounds legit right? I guess we'll find out. Long story short I spent most all the next day running around filling out paperwork, gathering items, writing checks, and mailing it all off. Sometime between the 14th and the 19th we'll find out if the $650 i sent them went to good use or not. I got a lot of family that live in San Diego and gave the passport people one of their addresses to send it to so we can hit the road and make way toward SoCal. So once all the paperwork and money was sent we hit the road for Newport to pick up my bike and get her all ready to go.

    That brings us to today. As Gabe was changing his oil I was loading my touratech boxes, topping off the rotopax and tying my new TKC80's to my fuel tank. I think about noon we hit the ignition switches and cut lines to start steaming south.

    We could NOT have asked for a better day to start off the trip!! Especially in December!! It was around 60 degrees, blue skies, very light wind, not a cloud to be seen. And the traffic on Hwy 101? Practically non existent. Just wide open road to rip. Oh sure, we made a few stops here and there for pictures and petrol, but mostly just cruzed. We pulled into Brookings, Or. at about 6pm or so. Found a hotel for $65 that I'm sure supplies complimentary bed bugs and hepatitis, but we're not scared. After we unloaded and relaxed for a hot minute I called up a few buddies I know in town and went out for wraps, Mac n cheese and a few Moscow mules. Now back at the motel kickin back and updating tomorrow's playlist on the juke box. Forecast for the rest of the week looks friggen golden!! Traveling south can't hurt much either.

    Tomorrows agenda includes a relaxing morning of showers, packing back up the bikes, breakfast with some friends, then gettin back on that 101 until we can get on that California Hwy 1 and get as far south as we can. Gonna try and make San Francisco day after tomorrow. image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg
    #5
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  6. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Stats for the first day image.jpeg
    #6
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  7. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Day 2: 12/7/2017

    We wake up from our slumbers and check for bed bugs and missing organs. To our surprise, everything is as it should be. I step outside half expecting to see our spare tires are gone. Nope, they're right where we left them. Alright! Once again it's warm and sunny. Let's goooooo!!!!!

    We get the bikes packed up, head to the south end of town so I can get a little breakfast and Gabe can look at the boats. It was around 11am when we kicked the tires and lit the fires. Only took about 10 minutes till we saw the 'Welcome to California' sign.

    Cruzing down the 101 was pretty decent. Some good views. It kind of turns into freeway riding for quite a ways actually. We stopped a couple times to check out the elk and take a few photos. Mostly just cruzed at freeway speeds.

    That's when we make it to Leggett; the corner of 1 and 101. There's still light out, but not for a whole lot longer. Leggett doesn't have a whole lot to offer, and the sign says Westport 28 Miles, so we head toward it. Holy moly if that first part of Hwy 1 wasn't the most fun road I've ever ridden!!! Just super twisty, ups, downs, I mean it was awesome. It was at the end of our 230 mike day, so I was getting a little tired, and it was getting darker, but these 10 and 15 MPH corners were such a blast! I almost forgot my wrist and ass was killing me.

    We finally make it to Westport, population 212, and find the only hotel they have. Thankfully it's still open. Such a sick little hotel!! They have king size beds, a sauna, full bar n grill which is amazing food! And a breakfast provides us the next morning!

    After dinner it's time for sauna, shower, and the routing of tomorrow's ride. Really looking forward to breakfast and the viewing of this coast line all the way to San Francisco tomorrow!! image.jpeg image.jpeg
    #7
  8. ShineySideUp

    ShineySideUp Been here awhile

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    N :lurk
    #8
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  9. twowings

    twowings Comfortably Numb...

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    KTM oughta use some of your pics in their brochure! Nice...have fun :beer
    #9
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  10. hvilla

    hvilla Been here awhile

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    Subscribed...looking forward to this...thanks for taking us along! :clap:lurk:clap
    #10
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  11. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Day 3: 12/8/2017

    We woke up at the amazing hotel restaurant place with hot coffee, fresh home made scones, fresh fruit, right outside our door. Gabe went for a run and I started packing up. Once the bikes we're packed I took the liberty of enjoying the free complimentary breakfast which was toast, fresh pressed apple juice and a ham n cheese omelet. SO good!! After breakfast I played around with different GoPro mounts on my bike; on top of my touratech boxes, my windshield, my swingarm, helmet, and was playing around with filming in those spots. We made a lot of stops adjusting and moving the GoPro around, but I didn't mind, the scenery was AMAZING!!! This California highway 1 is the shit!!
    image.jpeg

    We took a detour off the highway to visit a lighthouse we saw. image.jpeg

    We pulled over and wandered thru an old Russian fort that is the last original Russian fort on the California coast. Totally had no idea we'd come across anything this awesome! The history behind this fort Ross is unbelievable! image.jpeg

    Crushing thru towns like Bodega Bay, I felt like I was on the movie set. Clear blue skies, zero wind, temperatures in the mid 60's, I mean can it get any better than this??? I don't think so. But it can get worse. And it did.

    See it starts getting dark around 5:00. That's also when people are getting off work. That's also when we pulled into San Francisco to cross the Golden Gate Bridge. On Friday. In San Francisco. At 5. In the dark. San Francisco is what.... 8 miles long? It took us 3 friggen hours to get thru town!! 101 was a friggen 8 lane freeway of cars that arnt moving. Why anybody would ever want to live in a city is completely beyond me. But hey, it takes all kinds right?

    We finally make it out of the city, barely, and find a mariot hotel or something similar. Get a room, park the bikes, carry our luggage in, order some pulled pork sandwiches and have them delivered to the room. Crap. I forgot a couple things in my box on my bike. Oh, what's this?? My lock fell out?? So now any homeless bum in this city can just pop it open and steal my sleeping bag and freeze dried dinners? Gosh darn it. I check the 3 remaining locks to make sure they're tight and locked. Hopefully I can get a replacement lock for this one soon. I don't have a lot of important things in there, but I would really like to be able to lock it up. Oh well.

    So while we're downstairs in the hot tub soaking away the rest of the day, we decide the city life sucks and need to get back on the coast highway ASAP tomorrow morning. No more of this 101 freeway trash. The goal is to get straight on the 1, take it south thru Monterey, then at Carmel take the Carmel Valley Road over to 101, since highway 1 is closed at Big Sur just south of there. Once we hit 101 we'll take it south and get as close to Pismo Beach as we can by the end of the day. Really looking forward to seeing more of the coast and highway 1 tomorrow, but now it's time for some beauty rest. image.jpeg
    #11
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  12. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    HA!!! I wish!!
    #12
  13. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Thanks man! Hope you enjoy it! We sure are!!
    #13
  14. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    So far the 800 is kickin ass!! I figured doing 90 on the straight stretches would have her tapped out, but Gabe says she's got PLENTY more to go!! We'll see how much she likes Baja haha!
    #14
  15. ShineySideUp

    ShineySideUp Been here awhile

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    I live about 20 miles east of SF. You are SOOO right about the friggin traffic and it's getting worse every year. I had to abort a trip last week due to traffic. It usually takes me about 1 hour 45 minutes to drive to Santa Rosa from the east bay. After 90 minutes, due to traffic, i was not even to the San Rafael bridge! I turned around and went home.
    #15
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  16. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Oh, dude, it was TERRIBLE!! Never again!!
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  17. Johnnydarock

    Johnnydarock Been here awhile

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    Looks good so far. I'm in.
    #17
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  18. BigDogRaven

    BigDogRaven Been here awhile

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    That's when we make it to Leggett; the corner of 1 and 101. There's still light out, but not for a whole lot longer. Leggett doesn't have a whole lot to offer, and the sign says Westport 28 Miles, so we head toward it. Holy moly if that first part of Hwy 1 wasn't the most fun road I've ever ridden!!! Just super twisty, ups, downs, I mean it was awesome. It was at the end of our 230 mike day, so I was getting a little tired, and it was getting darker, but these 10 and 15 MPH corners were such a blast! I almost forgot my wrist and ass was killing me.

    We finally make it to Westport, population 212, and find the only hotel they have. Thankfully it's still open. Such a sick little hotel!! They have king size beds, a sauna, full bar n grill which is amazing food! And a breakfast provides us the next morning!


    Yep, that section of CA 1 is sublime. One of the top ribbons of road in the state, IMO. Its much better the other direction from Westport to Leggett, if you get no cars in front and dry roads, its a blast. Westport is a cool spot, never stayed there tho. I may look into that now.....
    Great report so far.
    #18
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  19. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    I can't remember the place we stayed at, but it was hotel and a pub. Probably not a lot of those in town haha.
    #19
  20. beauxregard

    beauxregard Been here awhile

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    Day 4: 12/9/2017

    The jackhammers from the remodeling hotel woke us up promptly at 0800, which is when we set our alarms, so that's fine, just no snooze option. We packed up, loaded up, and carbed up (at least I did with muffins and potatos, complimentary, from the conference room) and hit the road. Swung into the nearest fuel station to gather petrol for the tanks and air for the tires, and made our way west toward the coast as fast as we could.

    We hit highway 1 and cranked it south. Made a little pit stop in Santa Cruz for tank tops and boardies, then continued on toward Monterey for lunch on the pier and visit the school Gabe once attended. We did a little drive by of the beach down in Carmel, got a glimpse of Pebble Beach golf course then made way for Carmel Valley Road; a windy, twisty, ruff piece of mostly 1 lane road over the hill toward 101. The higher in elevation we got the cooler it got, which felt amazing since it was in the 70's on the beach and not only were we in full armored riding gear from head to toe, we also had thermals on underneath since it'd been chilly the last few days. Needless to say, that cool mid 60's air was very welcome flowing thru all the open vents. Now I love the coastal riding, I mean I love it. It's my absolute favorite. But it was a nice change of pace to be on this super twisty road winding thru the trees next to the creek, racing down the road playing a little leap frog and smelling the cattle hanging out near the shoulder.

    We pop out on 101 in some town I'm not completely sure of, look on the routing apps to see where we are and what's ahead, and decide to get on the 101 freeway and head south. After about an hour and a half of keeping Cruze control around 90mph, we pull off in Paso Robles (your guess is as good as mine)

    It's currently 930. Been tucked in bed for a bit already. Getting up with the sun and making our way down to Pismo Beach where 1 and 101 intersect, taking that right turn onto 1 and taking it thru Santa Barbra and Malibu and whatever else is between here and Huntington, where we'll be camped out with some friends for a few days. Looking forward to spending more than 1 night in a specific location that's for sure!! image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg
    #20
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