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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by HondaVsTheWorld, Nov 11, 2011.
Just checked weather.com for D.V. 50-60s f. during the days; a bit below freezing during the night. Nothing surprising there. If you have a decent sleeping bag, you should be fine. I don't know if you have experience in the desert or not, but I'll remind you that the temps drop quickly after sunset in the desert. But if you were able to camp in Alaska, I can't imagine you'll be put off by the weather in Death Valley. Go. It's spectacular.
Monument Valley is wide open spaces - if you are going there - stop in at Moab 1st and do Canyon Lands and Arches. Then do the Moki Dugway on the way to Monument. Also there, if adventurous, try the little known Valley of the God's at the bottom of the Moki Dugway. Another good road is HWY 12 from Torrey, UT - but check the weather as one can get snow at altitude around the passes. Most of that area slows or closes after October.
South Rim is second best. North Rim and the Kaibab plateau is the real deal - but closed usually from the middle of October due to snow.
Hope the ride is going well. You can get to Death Valley if you take the Southern approach ... heading down highway 58 to Mojave, then going back North and into the Valley on highway 14. Then down to Ridgecrest, out past Trona, and on to Death Valley. There are several ways to go, that's just one.
Nice this time of year but surrounding mountain passes may be closed due to snow and cold. But then it can warm right up and go into the 80's just like that. Lots and lots to do in Death Valley if you look around ... but bring your own food ... and out of Pay camp grounds. This is no problem.
I was wondering if you are fast enough to legally travel on Freeways? California used to have (may still have) a CC limit for Freeway riding on a bike.
I guess there are alternate routes but must be tough in some places as seems sometimes the ONLY road is a freeway or fast highway. I hope you can do at least 50 mph or CHP might have a word.
In California check out the G roads. These are county Farm roads that often will get you were you need to go.
Once you cross that border you will be fine ... nice and warm and a pace much more to your liking. Do be careful on some of the narrow Baja roads and crazy truck drivers. Watch your mirrors. But I'm sure you know all this by now. Great little bike, I love it.
I rode Honda 50's and 90's in the early 60's. Then, in around '65 rode a CL175 Honda all over Northern Baja on a Surf trip. Great memories. I now have a DR650 ... just returned from Mexico. It's very empty. Kind of nice actually ... and not nearly as dangerous now. They are getting things under control ... a bit. Don't sniff Coke or smoke pot with guys in $50,000 pick up trucks wearing snake skin boots! (Narcos ... but sometimes they INSIST!)
Safe riding y Suerte!
Sean - are you still out there?
How about an update?
Subscribed. This should be a great one!
160cc's is Freeway legal in Kalifornia, but it is deadly !!!!!!!!!!!!1
This is soooo cool, who said you need a Beemer to ride the world, enjoy it and safe safe and please keep all of us updated. Thanks for sharing!
This is Nick. Couple of us in the SF area had brews with Sean on Sunday. He should be approaching LA by this point, if all has gone smoothly. Our weather has been clear, so I have good hopes for him.
Sean, brother, good to meet you, and best wishes on your Journey!
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Hi Guys... its been a while since I posted here, I was pretty busy up until just before Xmas. I've done a little work on my bike at Timothy Ford's place in Orange county. The clutch was showing early signs of slipping.
We took the plates out but Timmy didnt have the right ones so I cleaned them up and just stuck them back in . Ive order a new set which I hope to put in soon.
I've updated the website with a couple of entries since I was here last, its very hard to find the balance of enjoying where you are and supplying updates.
Overall things are going well, but there is no point in sugar coating it either, I have been on travelling for 4 months now and being on your own and travelling can get you down a little. But also it could be that havent been on the road for a while and need to hit the road again!!!
Im in Vencie Beach CA, and will make a move to San Diego and then on to Mexcio very soon.
I got invited to Vegas by this Argentinian girl so I headed there for the New Year... shhhiiittt.. you Americans now how to party!!!.. i blew more money there than I could have afforded to and got sucked in, but had a great time! and it was well needed!!
So if you want to see the full updates you'll catch em on the website, facebook and the YOu tube channel.
I think the most challenging times still lie ahead and I'm getting myself in gear to hit Mexico!!!!! ( you think Mexico is crazy there was a shooting and stabbing outside my Hostel on the Vencie Beach the other day!!!!!)
Thanks for the escort out of San Fran by some of the BARF members a few weeks ago!!!!
thanks for reading
Keep her lit....
hey Sean, see my earlier post quoted above. Narrow Baja roads ... I've seen a few cyclist's run into the ditch ... sometimes there is no ditch! :eek1
Baja is very quiet now. I was just there last month. Not many tourists to speak of. No danger from the Narcos, military or Police there.
Sounds like Venice Beach agrees with you. My old stomping grounds from the 60's/70's. I know well the "Travel Blues", having been on the road in my youth off/on for seven years ... most of the time in Latin America.
You can go two ways down there ... 1. hit every GringoTenango along the Gringo trail and hang out mostly with other tourists (Euros, Brits, Yanks, Kiwi's Aussies, et al) ... or 2. go native, learn the language and go to work. Staying busy really helps cure the blues. Plenty of opportunities.
I started an import business. Payed the bills, kept me on the road.
Good luck with the bike .... Ride Safe!
(PS: UpDates? Web Site vs. ADV Rider: You have 5500 views to this thread and 51 posts. How does you web site compare?)
Have fun Sean!
Evidently I have not provided all my updates here!!!!
Warning this post contains some regurgitated hippy "mumbo jumbo".. disregard at your leisure.. I'am simply giving the full gammoth of my experiece and the random people I meet!!
One more post and we'll be up to date.. hope you enjoy!!
So I am now in Los Angeles*California!!!!, Today I completed another 2 *miles stones I got the must have photo for Los Angeles, the*famous*Hollywood sign! and Little Honda Surpassed the 7000 miles mark on this journey and currently has 35,909 miles on the clock!!!!....EPIC.
The last few weeks have been very busy, so apologies for not updating sooner!! I've met some very interesting people over the last few weeks and this blog covers a whole range of places, people and experiences. I have been staying with Timothy Ford for the last few days. Tim contacted me through the HondaC70 forum I had posted on before I left. I will write a seperate post on Timmy's bikes as he has a few very special ones. *But here is the account of the last few weeks,
(Its 2am so sorry for any editting mistakes!)
Wow is all I can say... well and a few other things I suppose..
Majestic, awesome (in the true sense of the word), spectacular, beautiful, amazing, humbling.
The below is a quote from the poem The Redwoods by*Joseph B. Strauss ( and designer*of the Golden Gate Bridge)
"This is their temple, vaulted high,
And here, we pause with reverent eye,
With silent tongue and awestruck soul;
For here we sense life's proper goal:
To be like these, straight, true and fine,
to make our world like theirs, a shrine;
Sink down, Oh, traveler, on your knees,
God stands before you in these trees."
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I took a walk through the area, saw some speclatular looking trees and then took a tourist ride in a cable car up into the*mountain, , trees are better seen from the ground in my opinion.
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A couple of days later I reached Hombolt National Park where there are a lot more amazing trees,
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I decided I wanted to camp in the woods that night.*I hid my bike behind some trees, which was*surprisingly*difficult, and covered it with a tarp.
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I found a nice spot not too far off the road, close to a river. I cooked my food that afternoon on the dry gravel river bed (the Winter flood plain).
There was a large fallen giant thant spanned the whole way from the road, through the forest and out over the gravel river bed. It formed a great bridge that allowed me to walk a path *through 3 *distincly different habitats.
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That night I walked to the end of the tree suspended about 15 feet above the gravel river bed I sat and read *some pages given to me by a guy who I met the night before at a beach.
I had camped at a beach the previous night which I arrived at by chance, after getting off Highway 101 due to heavy and fast traffic. I met a guy there with his girlfriend called Zane. They had been traveling for a few weeks in a large 4x4 and would be travelling for another 4 months or so. Zane was really*enthusiastic*and full of life and advice on the local areas. We only spoke briefly.
I lit a small fire and chilled out under the stars reading by my camp at the beach ( where I left my last blog)
The next day I was packing up my gear and Zane and his girl friend came over to me. He had few pages of printed A4 for me. I noticed it had a copper spiral paper clip. He said he had not given this to many people but he offered it to me and said I could either read it or use it as kindling. He was trying not to appear forceful of passing on his material. He had also written other novels as he told me, and he uses an Alias of Shane Dillon! Which he took to be a significant coincidence, and I too.
I took it and said I would read it and left for the Redwoods..
So anyway, I sat on the end of the tree in the dark of night in the redwoods, with just *head torch and read his few pages.
To give you the jist of it, Zane is "done". He is done with many things, and he feels like he has*exhausted*his usefulness in his present state in Life.
A few years ago, in a moment of dispair Zane had an experience that changed the course of his life. In that moment Zane described that he had stood in the presence of what he now calls God. He was not a religious guy beforehand he did not believe in God per se. Nor would I call him religious now, based on his literature. In his experience, Zane experienced a pure white energy and light, embodied*by wisdom and was filled with what he*described*as unadulterated love. As a result of that experience he has made it his life's work to follow his*inspiration.
He believes that Life is simply for the experience and the body a means of transport, a receptical or a tool to experience it through. He now has no fear of death and welcomes the outcome. Though that is not what he is seeking. Death he believes, like any process is merely the finishing up of an experience and the transition to the next.
He believes we are at a dawn of a new age, an age of the evolution of human consciousnesses. He believes mankind has not yet unlocked our*true abilities and realised our full*potential, in particular our minds.
"It is a time of radical evolution. Not of machinery or of technology or*convenience*or*destruction, but an evolution of*consciousnesses*through expanded awareness , whereby the power and the potential of the mind are realised, revealed and released, not to a gifted few, but to any who embrace the qualities of the dawning age, the Age of Aquarius which carries with it the highest ideals of Humanity."
he continues *"...nothing has ever been released that has not*released*itself ", and that in order to move this process on he intends to take what he believes to be positive steps towards this*advancement.
"As I stated in the begining, I am complete in this experience, and I am ready for my next. I am ready to evolve. At some undisclosed time prior to the date, as the caterpillar forges his cocoon I will sequestor myself into isolation removing all external influence and sustenance. I as I currently am will not becoming back, not in my present form anyway, if at all. I am submitting and applying myself- the entirity of who I am and the full force of my will and desire to the metamorphosis process. I am going forth to become what I AM."
"... I have made my committment. My will be done, I can not fail"
Zane has set a date fo this 11 pf March 2012. He*has a website/blog *www.myspace.com/zane3x7 if anyone is interested in following whatever process he is about to engage in. The piece he gave me is in his Blog, entitled "The Unveiling".
It was very interesting to have met him.
I left the headed down the road and came to Fort Bragg, and ended up at a small fishing pier called Noyo. Where I was met by a guy walking a dog. He said to me. "thats a long way to come on a small bike". He mentioned he was from Ireland.. "oh yeah" i responded "from where"? Dillon Country came the reply .. was I hearing things?.. who? where ?
Dusty Dillion was his name from Athlone Ireland. The same location where the Dillons of Harpoonstown had originated. Was I standing in front of a long lost relative?.*Probably*I figured.
Dusty allowed me to set up my tent in his little RV park at the pier. The next day I spent with him, preparing some boats for the lighted boat parade he helps organise. Dusty is also good friends with Matt Molly proproter of Matt Malloys pub in Westport Co Mayo.
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While there I also met a guy called Roger who personally knows Ted Simon (any self respecting motorcyce traveller will know who Ted is), and used to work for him on his organic farm. Ted was one of the early pioneers of overland long distance motorcycle travel and his*book "Jupiters Travels" inspired thousands of people to hit the road on their motorcycle.
Thanks Dusty and Roger!!
After there I headed on to Mendocino, to catch up * with MendoDave. Dave conatcted me before I left where he came across my post on a Honda forum. He had been restoring a old Honda Passport*of his friend's Daughter. He allowed me to use his workshop to carry out what ever maintenance repairs I required. Thanks Dave it was a*pleasure*hanging out for those 2 days!! (Dave also knows Ted!!- small world)
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I continued down Highway 1 with hugging the coast and enjoy the*unusual*sunshine.
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I arrived with just shy of 7000 miles completed and with the Honda having completed c.35,780 miles over 25 years. What a little fighter this bike is. For those of you that might not be into bikes per se, that is A LOT of miles for a tiny one cylinder engine!! Though the bike is starting to show some signs of its age, the clutch slipping a little and it is popping out of 3rd gear sometimes. I will update again on the bike status. But these can be*dealt*with.
So now I need to decide on my next steps, I was hoping to make Death Valley for Christmas. Death Valley for Christmas*apparently*is Mecca for some people, but I am not sure that will happen now. I need to make some very good preparations before I tackle the desert on the bike. So watch this space!! Where I will spend Christmas I am not sure, but I'm not too concerned right now.
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More to come...
Thanks for the advice man... I'm thinking of going native as you might have guessed!! I'll watch out for those narrow Baja roads too!! Think I might try find a family to live with for a couple of weeks to learn the language!
re website Vs ADVrider...I guess people these days want their news delivered to them and ADV certainly does that, it has a captive audience. So I am just learning all this stuff!!
as you can see Im catching up!!!
Thanks for the comments!!
Great up date Sean.
One other Tip on Mexico you may not know about: OIL.
Very important for your little monster I should think. Mexican oil is junk. You will see lots of USA brands sold there (Pennzoil, Quaker State, Mobil One and more) thing is ... read the label. It will say: Hecho en Mexico.
Here's how it works: US companies sell the right to use the brand/label ... but it is ALL Pemex oil. (Petrolios Mexicanos). Pemex is a state run monopoly ... there is only ONE oil company in Mexico and it's owned by Mexican govt. Same goes with the gasoline. All and only Pemex. It may say Quaker State ... but it's just Pemex oil.
And guess what? It will not contain ANY of the high tech (and very secret) additive packages common to ALL USA oil. This is probably why you see even NEW cars smoking and belching fumes throughout Mexico. The oil is junk and the cars wear out very quickly because of this.
The proprietary blends and additives are NOT shared with the Mexicans when the US companies license the brand.
You are lucky, your little Honda doesn't need much oil ... I would bring enough USA oil for TWO oil changes. This should get you through Mexico.
In Central America USA (and some Euro) oil is available, moto oil too but VERY expensive.
PS: you CAN find US made oil in Mexico ... and even US made Moto speciality oil ... but man, it is like $17 to $20 a quart :eek1 and not sold many places. If you buy it ... make sure it says Hecho en Estados Unidos (EEUU).
Here at home I use Mobil One synthetic car oil all my bikes. (for the last 150,000 miles) I use the Extended Mileage Mobil One or High Mileage. Either are good and neither contain friction modifiers. (bad for clutch)
But any USA oil will be good, whether synthetic, a blend or basic mineral oil. You can buy oil very cheap at Wal-Mart in a 5 liter jug. Easy to carry. So strap on a jug and your motor will thank you!
I just read your posts and must say I am very impressed with your ride and determination. I know you wont make it to the east coast of the US, to North Carolina, but if you were to, a place for shelter and ample food and drink are here for you.
Dont know if you know about it, but there is an international site called Couchsurfing.org. As the name implies, people open their homes to travelers such as you. Might wish to look it up and see if you might find some people local to you. Camping has it's merits, but so does couchsurfing!
As you posted earlier, you sometimes feel guilty in taking people's charity. DONT! It makes people feel genuinely good to help other people, and they get the experience of meeting a traveler from another land. It's a wonderful way to share cultures.
From reading other blogs on traveling in Mexico, I would advise you to pack extra tubes, and tube repair kit and a tire inflater of some type. Of course, the tools needed to do a repair are needed as well. Lots of flats in Mexico from what I read. You probably have addressed this already.
Enjoy your travels and stay safe!
EDIT! I just checked out your blog, which I should have done first. I see you have all the tools you may need and aloso already know about Couchsurfing.org. My apologies. Dave
Good advice on tubes there Dave. In Baja tubes are like Gold. Not available. Mainland Mexico is better as there are more moto shops. But most sell the worst and cheapest Chinese tubes. Quality (real natural rubber instead of Butyl) can be patched and re-used, are tougher too. Worth bringing a few good ones along.
Flats are common in Mexico. But Llanteros (tire repair) are everywhere and they can fix ANYTHING! USE THEM!!! CHEAP!
Grifter I didnt want to get into a discussion about motor oil Seans RR but what you said about Mexican motor oil piqued my curiosity. I always buy Castrol GTX at Autozone in Mexico. I never noticed if it was Hecho in Mexico or not but I just looked and it says Hecho in EUA. It costs something like 80 or 90 pesos a liter. I'm not saying some of the oil products they sell in Mexico aren't crap, just saying you can get good oil at reasonable prices in Mexico at Autozone. Of course, the OPs bike probably only takes a liter.
I am subscribed to this thread and looking forward to seeing where this takes us! Sean, if you come my way give me a shout.
That's a good invitation. Durango is a great town and great riding all around. Good on ya for extending the invite.
I was in La Paz, BC last month at Wal-Mart. USA made regular 10/40 Mobil oil was $167 Pesos/qt. ... about $13 USD. Synthetic Mobil One was around 250 pesos, or $20 usd/quart. Good to know Auto Zone is competitive. I'd not heard of that. On the road, going through small towns I never saw US made oil anywhere ... ALL Hecho en Mexico. YMMV of course.
I have a Mexican acquaintance in Tijuana who only uses USA made oil. Easy for him, being so close. He runs a body shop/painting ... and very good mechanic.
Sorry for the HI-Jack Sean ... But this oil business could be important for you. A few thousand miles with bad oil riding in High temps, fully loaded bike, high RPM's, motor working hard could, CLAP OUT your engine rather quickly.
Some great advise on oil man, thanks for pointing that out. Ill be taking a couple of quarts of Yamaha lube 20w/50 with me.. that stuff is great!... but will be keeping my out for a decent South American (hecho USA!)
and cheers for the offer of a bed in Durango mate..!... Ill need to put some more detailed planning into my route through Mexico soon!!
Soon as I have my clutch plates Ill be on the road again!!
Venice Beach is a great place to hangout and wait... (and drink and eat and meet pretty girls sweeeet...