Pacific Northwest with an Italian Supermodel

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by AntiHero, Sep 10, 2013.

  1. flyinturbo

    flyinturbo Adventurer

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    Shocks, pegs?! LUCKY!

    Perfect music for that clip man!
    #61
  2. keithg

    keithg Been here awhile

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    subscribed
    #62
  3. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Suicide of sorts? Let's hope so. This time I'm wearing real boots and real pants so PlatinumGrit doesn't give me any shit. ;)

    I spent a couple days working out/working on a solution to a Gilles Rearset related problem prior to departure. I may or may not get more into that later, depending on how the JB Weld holds. Shimano really should get into the rearset business. Or OSH. Bullshit. Seems half the shit we buy doesn't work or fails, no matter how little/much we spend. Doesn't anyone test anything they produce?

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    The Panigale was seething to get out on the road (and so was I), so off we roared after a hasty timed self portrait.

    After all the scorching 19mph sections I spent on 1, I figured if it was going to take 20 hours to drive 600 miles, I might as well stop for plenty of shots:

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    From the looks of it, I was tearing around 1, but the Supercorsa SC tire boogers were just remnants of better times at Sonoma Raceway and Thunderhill.

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    Once past Stinson Beach (which I think is the turnaround point for most Electric Vehicles), the roads--and my mood--improved greatly.

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    #63
  4. Trane Francks

    Trane Francks Been here awhile

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    Nice pics. That was one tired tire. :evil
    #64
  5. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    The Coast is incredibly beautiful. Though the world has no shortage of coastlines, it's hard to get much better than this, at least for scenery.

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    I began to get into the swing of it. The stress of moving what I had back into storage and setting out with just a backpack (no tail bag this time) and the stress of prepping the bike and dealing with my jacked up Gilles rearset had diminished, the caravans and slow moving Priuses had dissipated, the weather was great, and I had forgot to put in earplugs, which is an aural delight on an 1199.

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    People from all over the world are amazed at the size of our Redwoods (hell, even we Californians are still). The Sequoias in SoCal are as big (and much, much larger than even this one), but the scale is still impressive. And some of you might recognize this scenery from Return of the Jedi. As I rolled loudly through an otherwise peaceful landscape, I kept having flashbacks of two giant logs suspended opposite each other that came crashing down like two sledgehammers into each other, crushing imperial intruders. No such Ewoks living here now, though Emeril has been known to camp here with his furry family every once in awhile.

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    #65
    Fred Oliff likes this.
  6. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    I'd been on the road for 9 hours on Highway 1, and made it to Arcata by the end of the day, which meant I had averaged about 35mph. Google has the travel time at around 6 hours, but doesn't factor in all the one-way temp road closures, aforementioned double-wides on wheels, slowpoke drivers and, of course, stopping for gas, to take pictures and leaks, etc. I thought I'd stay in Eugene, but like all towns that really have nothing to offer the world except an overpriced hotel room and fried fast-food, it's a hard town to love and, considering all the vagrants just lounging around waiting to scrounge up enough money to buy a dime bag or a hit, I pressed on to Arcata, which was only slightly better. I saw a lot of farm houses that I'd have loved to stay in--maybe someday I'll get up enough courage to just stop in and ask a farmer if I can crash in the hay, but I'd better show up with a sleeping bag, too, because it's cold here this time of year at night.

    Had some lackluster lamb kebabs and some really spicy mushrooms before settling in and konking out.
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    The next morning I realized I'd better get some pictures of how a lot of the 'hippie' drug culture in NorCal lives. To each their own, can't say that anyone living out of their car is any less happy than someone living in a cube to pay for their car; and I can't say someone hitchhiking (holy shit there are a lot of people who hitchhike up here!) isn't actually having a great time, but I find it impossible to trust those who just want something from you (a dollar, a ride, a cigarette, gas money, etc.). I ran into a couple of dudes who were really interested in talking to me about my bike, but not 5 seconds after beginning to answer their questions, they grew impatient and asked for what they really wanted all along: free money. A strange ethical foundation lies beneath the surface of all of my decisions that I still don't quite understand, but one thing is clear--treating people as just a vehicle for something self-serving is wrong, always. That might be the only ethical clarity we have (thanks Kant) that's absolute and an ethical law I can't recall ever having broken for the past 25 years (hey, I was a stupid kid who did stupid things, but I learned). So when someone violates that principle, sympathy and compassion tend to not be high on my list of reactions.

    In any case, there's a subculture in North NorCal that's all its own, providing a stark contrast to the pure, unadulterated beauty of the surrounding land and ocean.


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    And this was straight out of Breaking Bad. A rolling meth lab (or just an RV cruising out to camp on a nice spot by a river), stuck in sand, with the entire back end of the vehicle resting on the ground. I kept expecting a dude to get out in his underwear, but all I saw was a woman looking at the back tire rooster-tailing sand. A little too late even for the 'lowering the tire pressure' trick.

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    #66
  7. Duflul

    Duflul Adventurer

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    Great to see you're back on the road! Loving the rr so far, too bad I have to follow it in real time now unlike your previous one.

    Also, I've always thought it was called carl jr's as opposed to carl's jr, but then I've only been there once while on holiday in sf and really drunk, oh well. I'm also looking forward to the good food pics.
    #67
  8. 3B43

    3B43 Adventurer

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    Dude, its 'Arcata', or as I call it, Berkeley NORTH! Did you notice all the stunning 'babes' in BN? They (them?) dont believe in soap, razor blades, or shampoo! Quite the 'aroma' when your down wind! Notice the 215 stores? I live 8 miles south in Eureka (crankers and heroin addicts) and it has a different 'feel'.

    Hwy 1: last time I was on 1, it was gorgeous going down and 24 hours later, soup! Couldnt see 200 yds most of the way home! AND WET! That's the coast!
    #68
  9. NoSoup4U

    NoSoup4U Adventurer

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    So glad to see you back on the bike Dennis!!! You're going to encounter lots of cold and wet miles on this journey. I am not too ashamed to admit that I use heated gear on my 1198 for my trips. It makes a miserable day into a toasty riding adventure. Safe travels! I wish we could have met when you were down in L. A. Hopefully next time.
    #69
  10. flyingz06

    flyingz06 Been here awhile

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    I believe California is a blue state.......i know it is
    #70
  11. vrrm

    vrrm n00b

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    Great to see you on the road again! If the timing was better, our paths may have crossed on Hwy 1. I was there a week ago, concluding a trip from SoCal to Alberta.

    +1 on the heated clothing. It has transformed cold days into nice rides. Safe travels.
    #71
  12. rootsy

    rootsy Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the report. Love the panoramas. Safe travels!
    #72
  13. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    It's scenes like this that remind me of what I / we miss out on when we stick with familiarity. I encourage everyone reading this to do one thing before the year is over: take a vacation day or a sick day. Pick a point on a map that's 4 hours away. And instead of going to work, drive to the point you picked, then turn around and drive back on a different route so you'll be home at roughly the same time you'd be home by had you actually gone to work. It's a day you'll never forget and you'll accomplish something you'll remember for the rest of your life. Hopefully you'll also be reminded of what you can see and accomplish in just one day....

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    The further north I went, the closer I came to the 'true' PacNW' (at least how I imagined it to be).

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    I pulled over on the side of the road, climbed down the rocks to take a leak, then looked up and saw this. Wish I could say I planned it, but it was merely the consequence of a bladder full of coconut juice vibrating at 5000 rpm.

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    Unfortunately the fog didn't last long and the sun came back out. There are lots of Tsunami warning signs, but I'm not sure how much good they could possibly do other than warn potential real estate investors that sometime in the next 200 years there could be some flooding and destruction.

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    #73
  14. fritzcoinc

    fritzcoinc Enjoying my last V8

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    +1
    #74
  15. Shooby

    Shooby Long timer

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    #75
  16. aviatorbdm

    aviatorbdm Been here awhile

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    Well said!
    #76
  17. aviatorbdm

    aviatorbdm Been here awhile

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    It's scenes like this that remind me of what I / we miss out on when we stick with familiarity. I encourage everyone reading this to do one thing before the year is over: take a vacation day or a sick day. Pick a point on a map that's 4 hours away. And instead of going to work, drive to the point you picked, then turn around and drive back on a different route so you'll be home at roughly the same time you'd be home by had you actually gone to work. It's a day you'll never forget and you'll accomplish something you'll remember for the rest of your life. Hopefully you'll also be reminded of what you can see and accomplish in just one day....


    this I mean...
    #77
  18. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    I’m still trying to figure it out. Take the ‘day off’ idea from above. Sneaking away for 8 hours without disrupting your normal life is relatively easy to do without anyone suspecting you made a prison break (unless you’re actually in prison). Multiply that times 3, then by 175. That’s enough freedom to fill a decade of adventure (and vacations), if not more.

    It’s easy to overlook the stress, frustration and confusion, the financial implications, discomfort and adversity that accompany freedom, though. I cope with stress better than I do boredom, so that’s not a big deal to me. The frustration and confusion take their toll, as does uncertainty and overall discomfort, isolation and difficulty.

    An inmate sent me a message just a couple days ago asking me about what I’d sacrificed to be on the road for so long. His inquiry came at the same time I was trying to figure out the answer to that very question. It’s easy to look at the practical sacrifices, but what’s not as clear is just six months changed me. The impact to my life was poignant, the effects catholic. What I don’t understand is the mechanism. There’s been a long-lasting, perhaps permanent side-effect of this sojourn had on my ability to function ‘normally’. I experienced tremendous things I never expected, things I wouldn’t trade for anything. Just not sure how it disrupted my sense of balance ever since. It’s an odd effect—and I can’t say it even bothers me, but it’s strange. By the end of such a long trip, after forging friendships and learning about 16,000 miles of North America and myself, I expected to have a sense of certainty, of clarity. But just the opposite happened. It was as if someone very close to me had died when I made it back to the Pacific Ocean. I mourned for a couple days, then hit the road again. The dead rose, severe withdrawal was over. I’d end up in places like Marfa, driving by suspicious border patrol agents as I searched a 20 mile stretch of road for a particular location.

    (Found it!)
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    And one location would lead to another….
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    And another
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    And another. Seems easy to think that perhaps I was searching for something, but from the subjects of my photos I think I was looking to be lost:
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    The time of ‘day’ I visited the Alamo seems to indicate the same:
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    Those days were a blur. Time deformed, places bled into each other like days easily do. But the ‘blurdom’ isn’t like a haze. It’s more like that picture of the Lochness Monster or Bigfoot…the details may not be crisp, but the impression makes a huge impact.
    #78
  19. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    I’d like to say I couldn’t stop living the trip, but that’s only an explanation of my actions, not the root of the cause. Certainty, predictability and familiarity were almost intolerable. So much so that I never established a permanent residence and even absconded to hotels when I needed to escape, write, focus, defocus or just ‘Room 19’ it. The trip continued on by momentum even though I should have been at rest. Then of course there was a trip to CotA for the 1199R launch, a fellow inmate invited me to meet up in NY (insane time!), overnight trips to at Buttonwillow, Sonoma Raceway and Thunderhill for track days. I bugged out in Death Valley (twice), drove back and forth between SF and LA more times than I can recall. In any given week my head might see 5 different pillows. And when that wasn’t enough restlessness, I’d wander at night (sometimes with a camera)

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    Perhaps darkness, rain, fog, were my ways of experiencing the familiar in an unfamiliar way?
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    You can only imagine how the state of mind I'm in contributes to the development of positive, healthy relationships. There seems to be only one constant: that I disappear, and emerge somewhere else, as if my life had folded into two and under the connected planes of the present, moments looped underneath. Moments that only I knew were there.

    Traveling is a contradictory, temporary defense against the inevitability of my next trip; an insatiable need that intensifies the more I feed it. I’m still trying to discover just what makes me get up in the middle of the night and leave, what’s making it impossible for me to grow roots (or even want to). I’ve looked at places to buy, places to rent, places to sublet, cities to reside in, but have found none.

    So for now I have just one key in my pocket that fits just one motorcycle.
    #79
  20. kneedrag

    kneedrag Adventurer

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    Great photos and writings Dennis, I wouldnt expect anything less......
    #80