Since days 2 and 3 were primarily slab-fests I'll just throw them in together. I'm not a morning person. When I'm at home I generally stay up late and then crawl out of bed around 8 am. I make the ever essential coffee and breakfast and then wander around the house drinking said coffee, surfing the internet and reading until 10 or so. By then I'm sufficiently caffeinated to contemplate action Despite my very best intentions I'm not capable of co-ordinated thought until 9 at the earliest, I know this about myself and I don't fight it I did have to revise this procedure to accommodate the adventure but my typical travel morning went much like this first one. Get up between 7 and 8, shower (or not, depending on how long I had to soak in the tub the night before to get warm), dress, apply eyeliner, mascara and lipstick (you know any self-respecting cougar never leaves the house without it), pack and load the bike and find a suitable place for coffee and breakfast. Generally on the road at the crack of 9 or 9:30 This first morning I arose and peeked out the window - it was sunny! It had obviously just stopped raining since there were pools of water everywhere but the sun was shining. I opted to start the day in the rainsuit to protect myself from spray from passing vehicles and because I'd neglected to take a picture of it the day before - it just looks so darn glamorous I blasted, well OK, cruised down I5 toward Eugene. It's funny how hard it is to make myself pull over once I get on the Interstate but I did manage to stop for a couple of pictures of the Willamette Valley. South of Eugene I came to the town of Cottage Grove and I decided to try to find a coffee and WiFi. I hadn't had an internet connection at the motel and I was suffering from ADV withdrawal. I stopped at the local tourist info centre and I was directed to this place. When you walk in it looks like your typical coffee house and bakery with a counter of baked goods and a couple of tables by the window. Then I noticed a big doorway at the back. This opens into the adjoining saloon and bookstore Lots of locals sitting around with books and laptops or just chatting. It was great! This guy guards the approach. This mural was across the street. I also looked for a place in town for an oil change, the Wee was due for her 6000km (4000 mile) service but the shop in Cottage Grove didn't have a filter so it was back to the slab. South of Eugene I started to enter the Cascades. I had been down this way in 2001 in a car and I had forgotten that there were mountains to cross down here. The foothills I stopped for lunch in Grant's Pass and found a motorcycle shop in the Yellow Pages. Yes, they had a filter, yes, they could do a change right away - terrific The waitress however, not only couldn't tell me how to get to 5th Street, she didn't know what street we were on (it was 6th) :huh I figured it out The guys at Rapley Motorsports were friendly and we chatted while they changed the oil. They were also good-looking You know I'd notice that! Grant's Pass Oil change complete I resumed my southward journey. California here I come! The goal for the day was Sacramento. Past Yreka (I love that name!) I started to notice this mountain on the horizon. I'm sure you all recognize Mount Shasta. Climbing toward it I started to get cold and by the time I reached the town at the foot of the mountain it was time for dinner. I was laughing as I took this picture because I honestly thought it was the last time I would see snow Yes, more amusement for you at my expense I didn't quite make it to Sacramento. I didn't want to ride much after dark and I'd spent that time in Grant's Pass so I pulled over in Corning, CA and settled in for the night. Wednesday morning was a repeat of Tuesday and I was again on the road by about 9 am. By this time I was in the grasslands of northern California. I was a little worried about my gear, I didn't think my boots and jeans, yes jeans, I know, ATGATT, would hold up to the rigours of Toroweap and I didn't much relish looking like a squid when I showed up for the blind date so I stopped in Fresno and discovered CycleGear They outfitted me with a pair of riding pants and a sturdy pair of O'Neal boots. You'll see later I had ample reason to be grateful for this purchase. On to Bakersfield. And palm trees Along about dark I pulled into Tehachapi for a bowl of soup. I quizzed the locals about possible camping sites and motels but there didn't seem to be anything suitable in the area. I was feeling pretty fresh so I decided to continue to Mojave. It was full dark by now and really cold so I donned another layer and headed out. All seemed good until I reached the turnoff for Mojave. I exited the freeway and turned south and was blown across 2 lanes of traffic!! :eek1 Scared the crap out of me! Of course, Mojave isn't your typical "beside the freeway" town, it's 16km (10 miles) down the road to town and the wind was howling. I'd honestly never experienced anything like it. I pull up in front of the motel and check in. A couple of women in another room hear the Wee and come out to chat. One of them has just bought a sport bike (a really pretty one) and they're riding it home. I ask about comfort 2 up and they tell me one is riding, the other is driving the car. Nice! Their own support vehicle They also tell me the winds for the next day are forecast for 80 mph (130 kmh)!