passing through from NC

Discussion in 'West – California, the desert southwest and whatev' started by 35xj, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. 35xj

    35xj Long timer

    Oct 30, 2008
    asheville, nc
    looking for some route suggestions. currently have a plan as far as pheonix (got a friend to visit for a few days) from pheonix, id like to go up to hoover dam, spend a night in vegas, then head over to san francisco. Hope to ride some of the coast south out of san fran, need to end up in johnson valley.
    Any thoughts on any of that? I remember some pretty cool roads around the ca/AZ border up towards havasu, but thats about it.
    Would like to take in some of death valley, and really want to ride across the bridge in san francisco(Dont really know why, but i do)
    im on a 950, and my buddy is on an 800GS. Up for some gravel roads, prefer to stay off the interstate, unless its for a short hop. Really looking for some nice back roads with neat stuff to see. We have about a week to get from pheonix to johnson valley.
    thanks guys!

    TUCKERS the famous james

    Dec 23, 2005
    Villa Maria Sanitarium, Claremont, CA. USA
    If you are headed from Las Vegas to San Fran you are going to have to stay south, then west and make a straight shot for Bakersfiled to miss the snow.
    Good time for Death Valley, then head for Trona on 178, stay on 178 after 395 to Bakersfiled, then shoot across to Hwy 1.
    No northern route this time of year. Nothing north of 178 and even that can be sketchy, then it'll have to be 58, that's what all the truckers use.
  3. Off Limits

    Off Limits Banned

    Jun 18, 2009
    Camp Snoopy
    I believe highway 50 and interstate 80 are open thru the sierras all year. Would be colder and more snowy too!
  4. sealsam

    sealsam Sam...I am.

    May 30, 2010
    seal beach, ca.
    Hoover Dam is a fine visit, but only better when you park the bike and go walk on top of the bypass bridge that looks down on the Hoover:eek1.


    Also, the west side of Vegas is Red Rock Canyon. A cool little 13mi loop that you'll enjoy.

    Just north of Palm Springs is Joshua Tree NP, and if you're hitting it on a weekday, it's a nice ride with some vista's that are incredible. There are a few different angle's into that place so no backtracking necessary.

    I'm following you two on Ride Reports. Good stuff:thumb. Oh, please break the speed limit in CA, WE NEED the $$$:lol3.
  5. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

    Apr 5, 2011
    Western Sierras
    Sounds like a good trip.

    The best part of the coast is between Cambria and Monterey. Heading south on that section means you will be next to the cliffs for a better view (or worse view, if you don't like heights :eek1).

    I think it is $5 now to cross the Golden Gate, so be prepared with a bunch of dollar bills for the bridge tolls. If you are coming all that way, it is worth it. The other bridges have tolls too, but I think they all charge going into San Francisco.

    Just north of the bridge, there are a few cool things to see:

    - There is a visitor's center that shows how the bridge was made, and lets you get up close to a piece of the huge cable that carries the weight of the bridge.

    - There is an old battery (military cannon outpost) on the north side of the entrance to SF Bay. You can walk around and see the overlook, but the guns are gone.

    - In the Muir Woods, there is a little Bed & Breakfast called The Pelican Inn, which has a fairly authentic English pub. Fairly expensive place to stay, but away from crowds.

    - In the Marin Headlands, there is an old military base that has been converted into a youth hostel ( which is a cheap place to stay. There are other good hostels, but your bike will be pretty safe at that one.