Coast to Coast (and back?) with an Italian Supermodel

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by AntiHero, Jul 13, 2012.

  1. Tallbastid

    Tallbastid Let's get tropical

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    Happened to pass by a Duc dealer last weekend and dropped in to check out the Panigale. My god what a bike... I'm too tall to sit on it with any comfort, but I've never seen so much emotion resting on two wheels in my life. My girlfriend was smitten.
  2. Trane Francks

    Trane Francks Been here awhile

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    Yeah, this. It is singularly the most beautiful bike currently being manufactured. I don't think I'd ever buy a bike that breaks every speed limit in 1st gear, but it sure as hell is some serious eye candy.
  3. Back in da saddle

    Back in da saddle Adventurer

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  4. wantingaduc

    wantingaduc Adventurer

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    Hey AH,

    I was wondering if your book contains the posts related to the pictures you've posted here?
    The posts and your insights into your life, the trip and philosophy make it that much more interesting a RR and I'm hoping the book contains those comments too.

    jimi
  5. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Back from Death Valley. Restlessness averted (for a few days). Pics comin' up!

    That's pretty much how it went. :) Ducati has the video, no idea when it'll be released (or how much of the conversation will make it).

    Tiger_DFT: Encouragement greatly appreciated, as is the hospitality offer. After this weekend I keep thinking more and more about Australia and all it has to offer....

    Moodfart/Trane Francks: Funny you say that. Ran out to grab a bite tonight on the Pani. Walking back to the parking lot I was just stunned at how gorgeous and sinister she is. Evil! Love it.

    Back in da Saddle: Thank you. And I hope this is just the beginning....

    wantingaduc: You can view the entire book on Blurb. It's 90% pictures and 10% quotes. Or more like 95/5. Novel will incorporate a lot of the ideas here (which is, needless to say, making writing it a challenge).
  6. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    So I've been sedentary since I returned to the Bay Area. Great things have happened (Austin, Pittsburgh, SF), but in my blood is still this restless agony that requires constant inattention. (I have to ignore it, but it's always there.)

    My buddy Mike (who made his appearance in Chapter 1) finally said "fuck it" and inquired about Death Valley (for the 90th time). He and I are similar in a hell of a lot of ways, but whereas I cut the padlock to the parachute vault, pass out life preservers and then jump when I see smoke in the plane, he handcuffs himself to the flight controls and takes his chances with crash landings in order to save a plane that's not his (filled with people who, if they survive, will blame him for the whole incident). On the rare occasion he does try to bail his parachute either gets burned in the exhaust or sucked into into the engine (usually in the form of an ex-wife who is so discontent with receiving near-five-figure checks every month (and a six figure one here and there), she recently attempted to go after half his frequent flier miles (not kidding)). You can't make this shit up.

    I wasn't letting him off the hook, though. Death Valley is perhaps the greatest escape from the civilized world I know of. Exactly what he (and I, to a lesser extent) needed.

    Most think of the desert as just a boring expanse of nothingness filled with peril. That's true. But there can be so much more. Case in point: after leaving the Bay Area around 9pm and sleeping in Red Rock Canyon (2am), we woke up to this:

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    It's right out of Raising Arizona. And yes, there were two people sleeping in there. (We woke 'em up and they weren't pleased).
  7. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    [​IMG]

    We made it to where the real adventure was to begin. As a kid I read "Where the Sidewalk Ends." It made an impression. And in adulthood I find myself not-coincidentally drawn to roads like this:

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    Doing shit like this:
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    And this (throwing boulders off of cliffs. Take that Sisyphus!)
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    And drinking tequila. It was Cinco de Mayo after all.

    Oh yeah, and most of the above happened after we had blown out a tire on a stiletto rock that had been strategically placed by the inimical hands of fate. We fucked around after plugging it with three patches, waiting for a compressor that was about 5hp short of having 5hp to fill the 265/70-17 Terra Grappler to 30psi.
  8. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    After the third failure of the tire (announced by yet another rotating "hiss, hiss, hiss" sound), we realized plugs were futile and searched for a level, safe place to change the tire. Instead, we ran into this:

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    Yep. A crime scene.

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    A crime scene that had been declared a crime scene just prior to us rolling on it. Marked on the window was 5/4, 11am. My Timex read 5/4, 1pm. Cell phone, cooler, cigar case were inside. It was dusty--perhaps the truck had been there a few days. Whoever had driven it there had driven a very long time on blown out right side tires. The damage that disintegrating radials caused is apparent in the rear bumper, the non-existent rear wheel trim and, of course, the rims themselves. We (and whoever the driver was) were 50+ miles from anything. I only hoped the driver was now 30 miles from anything, but accepted the possibility that they were still in the area. I scanned for a human predator and loaded the HK.

    Only one problem: our rear tire was blown, too. We couldn't get far.
  9. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Of course, out of all the times I took a real jack into nothingness I never needed it. And the one time without my hi/lo I did. Bottle jack it was....and it worked surprisingly well. Esp. with two of us. Spare tire had a nail in it, but we still had two cans of sealant, two plugs and a compressor that, though meek, was still more powerful than four lungs.

    We didn't get attacked by sandpeople. Nor did the person/people associated with the demise of the Ford try and carjack us. The hardcore part of the journey was up next....but this lizard living in a cactus was a pretty good sign of what was in store.

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    Seriously, you can't make this shit up if you tried.
  10. Trane Francks

    Trane Francks Been here awhile

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    That's always a plus, as is avoiding stepping in a 3-foot-deep pile of bantha poodoo.
  11. fritzcoinc

    fritzcoinc Enjoying my last V8

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    I think you all will agree, nature makes the best camouflage.
  12. Bronco3738

    Bronco3738 Mike

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    Finally got caught up on this report. Glad to see it's still progressing. Excellent pictures. You even made New Orleans look nice. I lived there for several years, once the new wears off its not as appealing. Greats architecture and lots of history but it's not the cleanest or always the friendliest.

    This has to be one of the most thought provoking ride reports I've read. I don't always agree with what all of the commenters but the conversation makes you think. Thanks for putting such an effort into a documenting your ride. Glad to see Ducati even noticed. Can't wait for the rest of th story. Guess that's the bad part of being all caught up.

    The wife and I make it a point to do at least one long trip a year since our honeymoon. Those trips are the best memories and the times we have the most fun. We can't wait till we can take longer and longer trips.

    BTW. I like the FJ too. Not quite as sleek as the Ducati but definately serves a purpose.
  13. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Bronco: I hear you about NOLA. It's a wonderful place for a few weeks. I miss it a lot, but like most big cities, the disadvantages to living there become clear only when you've overstayed your welcome!

    As for the FJ--it might not be an ADV bike, but it prevented me from having to ride with another man hugging me from behind. ;) Also let me bring along a bbq and a ton of food. (Stay tuned for Lemongrass Bulgogi and Kimchee rice!)

    I'll have to do DV on a bike made for it.....perhaps Ducati or KTM have a press bike they would like reviewed/ADV tested? :D


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    This is what the "closed" road into the park looks like when you get far enough in. My third time up this side and it just gets better and better.

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  14. Bronco3738

    Bronco3738 Mike

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    I must have really overstayed my welcome. Your pictures really show the beauty of the city.

    Some of the same reasons we choose to take the Rubicon on a lot of camping trips. We can bring lots of food, and the dogs too.

    And yep I'd skip the other guy hugging you too. Lol

    If you get a chance to take a KTM 990 out into the desert, don't turn it down. It may not be a superbike, but a 100 plus horsepower dirt bike can be a lot of fun to slide around

    Looking forward to the food pics!

    Mike
  15. manban9888

    manban9888 Adventurer

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    The solitude of Death Valley must be a great way to recharge your batteries. It's on my list of places to see. Good to see your adventure continues. Those DV pics are some of my favorite. You're still making good choices...the one about using the parachute and avoiding men hugging you from behind come to mind :)
  16. rico2072

    rico2072 Been here awhile

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    Wow, those pictures make me think I should do Death Valley when I take the KLR out there and not the R1!
    Great pics.
  17. vicster

    vicster Long timer

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    If one were to worry about such a thing, I would be more concerned by its striking resemblance to the Paul Jr. Designs window sticker sold by WalMart. Just sayin'.

    And thanks for writing this report, I've enjoyed it very much.
  18. ewaugh

    ewaugh Adventurer

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    You must not have spent any time in the military Anti. I've seen more penis and been nut to butt with more men than I have women...:eek1
  19. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Paul Jr. Window Sticker? Don't know who he is and haven't been to a Walmart since forever? Googled it and couldn't find anything that resembles mine!

    Death Valley. Back to.

    Oh....only one short weekend in the Military (Camp Roberts). I was underage, but the Army was cool about it. Lots of fun, but too much figurative cock in the butt. ;)


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    Got decompression? Mars is a lot farther away, gravity there sucks and ya can't breathe the air. If you've ever imagined a weekend on another planet, it's as every bit as rewarding as these pictures depict. And you don't need a rocket to get there.

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    No one could figure out until recently how the rocks moved.
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    Has something to do with wind and water. ;)

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  20. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    After the Racetrack, Teakettle Junction, which had nearly been wiped clean, then Ubehebe Crater (Ancient Volcano) then Titus Canyon.

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    Fred Oliff likes this.