NV 2012 - In Memory of the Crewmen.

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by Hodakaguy, Jun 6, 2012.

  1. Hodakaguy

    Hodakaguy NorthWest Adventure Rider

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,157
    Location:
    Eastern WA State

    It was Hot....Then it was COLD!


    The Plan: Do a 1700 mile loop through NV with 5 riders in 7 days, exploring abandoned mines, ranches and history as we go. The tracks were made, the bikes were prepped and we were ready to head to NV for our 2012 Adventure. We picked early June this year hoping to beat the heat and ride in nice green scenery (it might be a gamble since the weather forecast is looking pretty iffy the closer we get to blast off time). There would be four riders leaving on the 1st and a 5th rider meeting up with us two days later out on the trail some where.

    This year I had a special theme for this trip with an idea that started during our last summers ride in NV....What is is? Keep reading below.....

    We loaded the bikes and hit the road!

    The Crew......

    [​IMG] Trever.....AKA: Novacaine. Riding a KTM 530 XCW

    [​IMG] Andy....AKA: Rommpy. Riding a KTM 450 EXC

    [​IMG] Tom.....AKA: Hodakaguy. Riding a KTM 530 XCW

    [​IMG] Mark....AKA: KnightRider. Riding a KTM 450 XCW

    [​IMG] Alan....AKA: Mamacone. Riding a Honda XR650R


    Overview of our tracks.

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    Day 1. June 1st, 2012.

    Miles on Bike: 1306
    Hrs on Bike: 53.5

    We were at the mini mart at 3:30am, trucks are filled and we roll towards NV. The last week has been nuts...tons of last minute prep. Andy's 530 lost a crank seal 2 days before we left, leaving him two days to transfer everything from his fully prepped 530 to his wife's 450 EXC so he could make the trip. A last minute rider (Mark) was added to the trip giving him a week to prep his bike....he had to order the desert tank, luggage, GPS etc and get it all set up in a very short time. He would also be leaving a day and a half later than us and would try and catch us somewhere out on the trail, he will watch our SPOT tracks with his iphone and try to intersect us some where on the trail.

    Let the adventure begin!

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    A stop at the historic French Glen Hotel along to way to stretch our legs. More info on the Hotel Here: CLICK HERE

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    The Steens Scenic Loop in the background...still closed due to snow. The bikes won't be this clean for long!

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    At French Glen I check the bikes to make sure they are riding correctly....and find oil leaking from my counter sprocket! Dang! Oh well, I brought a spare seal so I'll change it out in Denio. I turn to Trever and say "Man, my counter sprocket is leaking" and he says "or your friends poured oil on your frame at the last gas stop" LOL. Ok...that was pretty good! At least I don't have to worry about changing the seal out now :lol3

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    Trever picked up necessary refreshments

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    A long stretch of Highway with water on both sides....pretty cool.

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    We arrive at Denio Junction, NV. We will leave the trucks here and head out on adventure! We off load the bikes and do last minute prep.....load bikes, fill camel packs, etc.

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    Trever holding up two of the 5 bags of concrete that we will be carrying on the bikes...50 lbs total! Hmmmm........

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    Trever loading his two bags of concrete in the Giant Loop....could it be that the huge desert tank is causing the front end to feel heavy and he's trying to lighten it by adding weight in the rear?

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    My bike loaded up with the special cargo for the trip....it sticks way out on each side of the bike so I'll have to be careful not to catch it on sage brush along the trail. I think I may have just set a new luggage weight record on a 530 LOL.

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    Trever giving Andy the last bag of concrete.

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    We left Denio and headed into the Pueblo mountains with our special cargo. The weather was perfect, maybe a tad on the warm side as we climbed in altitude towards our destination.

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    One of the many cattle fences that we would have to stop, open then close along the route. These are scattered everywhere out here.

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    Trever waiting at the fence crossing......with all the heavy gear plus the added concrete the bikes are handling like a humming bird with a bowling ball duct taped under one wing :lol3. Good thing we have radiator fans...they are getting a work out today!

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    A view looking up into the mountains....the GPS is up and purring, just follow the yellow brick road :-)

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    And we Climb and Climb....

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    Cruising up the trail...trying not to snag a sage brush :-)

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    Alan letting his bike cool down and taking a break before the final steep rocky climb.

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    Climbing the final hill

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    We arrived at the WW2 B-24 Liberator Crash Site, our first destination of the day.

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    Everyone showing up at the site.

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    The flags are still standing proud on the radial engine.

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    We get right to work unloading the cargo...happy to get all the extra weight off the bikes after the steep climb.

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    Trever starts digging the hole we are going to need to plant the cargo.

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    We all take turns digging the hole, luckily the ground is less rocky than anticipated and the digging goes easily.

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    We insert the cargo into the hole and start mixing the 50 lbs of quick setting concrete to permanently lock it in place.

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    I added stainless steel tubing to the bottom of the post to help lock it in the concrete. I really wanted it to withstand the winds and weather it's going to have to endure up here.

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    And the Sign is planted and finished. :clap During last summers visit to the crash site (ride report: HERE) I started thinking about making a memorial plaque to place at the crash site. I really felt that the story of the planes crash as well as the names of the crewmen that lost their lives serving our country needed to be told. Visiting the crash site last year without this information made the experience feel incomplete. After returning home last summer I obtained the names of the crewmen that were on board that fateful night then Andy and I split the cost to have a laser engraved stainless steel plaque fabricated to place at the crash site. After receiving the plaque I fabricated a heavy stainless steel sign assy to mount the plaque on so it will last for years to come. One of the highlights of this trip for everyone involved was planting the memorial plaque.

    Click here for a PBS documentary on the crash site: CLICK HERE

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    A photo of the memorial plaque, I added pop rivets around the outside of the sign to give it more of a aircraft feel.

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    A waterproof guest book box was added to the sign so people visiting the crash site can write down their thoughts and feelings on the site. There is a water proof tablet stored inside.

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    And I entered the first entry into the book. If you visit the site make an entry into the log book, and please don't remove anything from the site!

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    And a group photo around the sign.

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    With the plaque installed we decided to explore around the crash site. I'll post quite a few pictures here of the crash site.

    Looking back at the bikes. One of the 4 twin-row, 14-cylinder Pratt & Whitney R-1830 "Twin Wasp" 1000HP radial engines, with one of the main landing gear legs and wheel in the background.

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    Continued Below..........

    Hodakaguy
    #1
  2. iBiker

    iBiker ADV Pirate

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    341
    Location:
    West Virginia at the confluence of US Rt 50 & I-79
    What a stunning tribute! Can not believe that someone would even think of doing something quite as cool as this for a crash site. RIP Crewman.....

    +1 on all who participated in this.

    Amazing simply A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!
    #2
  3. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    Good on you guys for doing that:clap:clap:clap

    Hope to make a site visit one day.
    #3
  4. AtcPDX

    AtcPDX n00b

    Joined:
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    PDX
    Wow badass!!!!!:clap
    #4
  5. cycletlh

    cycletlh Slower than yesterday!

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    What a great start to a trip. Congratulations to all of you for doing this. If I ever make it there I will say that I know the guys that put the sign up.:clap:clap:clap
    #5
  6. schaffer40

    schaffer40 I look lived in.....

    Joined:
    May 5, 2009
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Rowland Heights Ca.
    Pretty cool. Good for you guys.
    #6
  7. HardWorkingDog

    HardWorkingDog Harvey Mushman

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,886
    Location:
    Walnut Crick, Cal.
    Thank you, Tom, and all your crew for such a fitting tribute to the crewmen. As I hurriedly read through to see what the plaque looked like I spotted the rivets right away..."ah, just like a riveted body panel..." You nailed it.
    #7
  8. Comrade Art

    Comrade Art Working stiff

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    618
    Location:
    Oregon
    That memorial plaque looks great :clap
    #8
  9. Hodakaguy

    Hodakaguy NorthWest Adventure Rider

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,157
    Location:
    Eastern WA State
    Day 1...Continued from above.

    A piece of a tire...it's amazing how well the desert preserves items like this.

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    One of the 4 super chargers laying at the crash site.

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    A large piece of wing buried in the ground. You can see the control linkages as well as a small drive sprocket.

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    Some kind of hydraulic unit...I wish I knew what some of these pieces went to.

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    ??

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    The plane burned when it crashed into the mountain side....the heat was intense!

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    Another engine.

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    Landing gear assy.

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    Main gear wheel....melted out.

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    Another super charger assy.

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    The debri field is huge...lots of little pieces scattered along the hill side.

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    Self shot :-)

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    Andy at the top of the hill...soaking in the view.

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    Engine close up

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    Andy snapping a picture

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    Trever holding a chunk of melted aluminum....I wonder what part this used to be?

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    Looking back on the entry road

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    Looking down on the crash site from the hill side above.

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    Trever spies something....

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    A huge rattle snake...

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    Nose wheel gear.

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    Engine/super charger assy.

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    Another super charger assy

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    Melted Jug

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    Heavy piece of armored plate...wonder if it protected a fuel tank, or ??

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    Another engine

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    Piece of heavy cast aluminum and some wiring.

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    The other main gear assy.

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    Looking into the distance

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    Checking out the wreckage

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    More melted aluminum.

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    After checking out the crash site we got back on the bikes and headed twords Bog Hot Springs to camp and soak....we've all been up since about 2;30am and had a long drive plus the ride, we are all ready to relax for the night.

    Heading down the hill we see rain showers off in the distance, the weather has cooled down quite a bit since we first arrived at the crash site and the ride down is great.

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    Looking back at the crash site in the distance.

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    Alan at another gate on the way down from the mountain.

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    Trever dropping down into the valley below.

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    We arrive at Bog Hot Springs and set up camp...ready for food and a soak.

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    My camp setup, I start charging my Iphone and camera batteries.

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    Andy's and Trevor's camp

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    The sun setting on the hills....Beautiful!

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    A panoramic of the hot springs...water in the desert!!

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    Everyone headed to the springs...I decided to eat first then join the rest in the nice hot water.

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    Doesn't get any better than a hot flowing river!

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    Alan heating up dinner.

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    Alan's fan and GPS power stopped working today, we decide to operate and find out what's causing the problem. Turned out a wire came disconnected under the tank....got to love easy fixes!

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    Storm clouds are moving in..and there is lightning in the distance.

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    I manage to catch two lightning strikes with my hand held camera.

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    I decide to try and frame the bike in a lightning strike picture...but the sky starts opening up and rain starts pouring down. Not wanting to get the camera wet I retreat to the tent for the night. It was a great day of riding today...can't wait till tomorrow!

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    End Day 1
    Miles on bike: 1338
    HRS on bike: 55.1

    LOTS MORE TO COME!

    Hodakaguy
    #9
  10. bilborides

    bilborides Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2011
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    Good on you guys.Gone but not forgotten RIP
    #10
  11. brad21

    brad21 We have a pool... and a pond.

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Minden/Gardnerville, NV
    Doods, you guys deserve your own plaque for doing that. Awesome!:clap

    More please...:deal
    #11
  12. MasterMarine

    MasterMarine Long timer

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    It looks good up there. Great job! :D
    #12
  13. hanksmybuddy

    hanksmybuddy Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Tacoma, Washington
    Thanks for the plaque. Coming from someone who served for over 20 years it means alot when a group such as yours takes the time and effort to do something like that. I'm sure it means alot to their families as well. Job well done. Semper Fi!
    #13
  14. Buck Nasty

    Buck Nasty Rhinestone Cowboy

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    Bend, OR
    Wow! You guys are amazing! I can't quite put into words how I feel about this. It's just flat-out cool! Great report. Great Pics. Great tribute. I truly hope that plaque will help keep that area sacred and preserved.

    :clap
    #14
  15. Everett49

    Everett49 Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Northern California
    Awesome report already!! Thanks for putting up the plaque for the crew. I had not heard of this crash before, but I will visit since I live in Northern CA. Thanks for alerting us to this, and great pics too!
    #15
  16. wachs

    wachs just passin' through

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    I couldn't say it any better - well done fellows!
    #16
  17. RideAbout

    RideAbout Mentally Retired

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    Nicely done guys and great photo's. :clap


    We were there just a few weeks prior...
    #17
  18. 100mpg

    100mpg Self Imposed Exile

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    :clap
    #18
  19. Supahflid

    Supahflid Wheelieless

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    Just awesome! :clap:clap:clap:clap
    #19
  20. WVhillbilly

    WVhillbilly Long timer

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    It was great of you guys to do this. :clap
    The memorial looks great.
    #20