semel in anno licet insanire

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by LemonyLeprosy, Nov 15, 2012.

  1. LemonyLeprosy

    LemonyLeprosy Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2012
    Oddometer:
    36
    Location:
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    So, I signed the divorce papers, hopped on my little 250cc Honda Rebel, and left in search of myself.
    I departed with a very vague plan, and no experience road tripping on a bike,
    on what I hope to be a 1+ year long trip.


    [​IMG]


    The basic plan is to slowly work my way east, crashing on couch's when I can,
    camping when I can't. Perhaps swing through Mexico if my passport arrives in time
    for the International Rainbow Gathering.
    No real time frame, as long as I can live off $28 a day then I can stay on the road indefinitely.


    [​IMG]
    I left San Luis Obispo headed for Bakersfield for the first night, VIA the 58.
    Dropped the bike twice on the way - first time as i was pulling into a gravel turn off for a photo-op,
    second time on a left hand curve which just happened to have...
    gravel on it.
    Gravel it would appear, is not my friend. No injuries to me, just some minor bruises -
    but i bent the crash bars on my poor bike.
    Turns out that all the nagging from my friend about my weight distribution was correct,
    carrying everything so high made the bike *very* unstable at low speeds.
    Kinda like having a passenger who doesn't understand "Keep your feet on the pegs!".
    I arrived in bakersfield as the sun went down (took me 4 hours, but i was taking my sweet time along the way).
    Decided to stay an extra night in bakersfield to hammer the crash bars back into position and
    come up with a solution to the instability.
    The new setup:


    [​IMG]


    Same amount of gear, but much lower. Feels more stable.
    Left for Los Angeles around 8:30am. While i prefer twisty roads and winding highways,
    i decided to take the I-5 to L.A. to check how the bike rides before hitting less travelled routes.
    Seems to be riding better, but i think i need to ditch some excess gear.
    Perhaps cut my clothing down, or ditch a few books.
    I-5 through the mountains was freezing and terrifying at times - an Orange Star Stage bus kept tailgating me down every hill.
    I tried my best to pretend the bike was stable and that there was no chance of me going down in front of this bus-
    I didn't, it eventually passed to intimidate other drivers.
    It turns out that my gloves aren't going to cut it, my fingers kept going numb from the cold.
    I kept smiling through it, and knew i was close to L.A. when people started driving as if they had
    no regard for human life.

    I missed L.A., it's my second home. Looks like i'm stuck in L.A. until Saturday morning waiting on a new front tire.
    I was supposed to call ahead and order it last week, it was forgotten in the whirlwind of prep.
    Next leg should take me to Vegas on saturday, then down through Phoenix after that.
    I'll plan the rest of the waypoints along the way, and do my best to avoid snow.
    Will update again when I hit vegas or phoenix.

    Follow me on Spotwalla:
    Http://tinyurl.com/LemonyLeprosy

    I apologize for the odd formatting, it's showing up rather oddly on my netbook.
    More to follow soon.
    #1
  2. GB

    GB . Administrator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    61,030
    What a great intro!! So the search for oneself begins :thumb

    That's a lot of weight you're carrying very far back.. i hope the frame / subframe holds up..

    Good luck and safe ride :lurk
    #2
  3. DeadlyBananaDog

    DeadlyBananaDog Fiat pastillus.

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2008
    Oddometer:
    323
    Location:
    They call it the Triangle
    Have a great trip. Ditch that big-ass ammo box and get a dry bag. That trade will save you 20 or 30 pounds and keep the weight lower. As much as I love books, don't carry more than one at a time. You can pick up used paperbacks along the way, trading them at used bookstores.
    #3
  4. mmmpies

    mmmpies 101 in a 55

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Oddometer:
    413
    Location:
    VA side of the Potomac
    Jealous...I love my family but I miss the road. Enjoy yourself.

    Btw, the guys are right...less is more. You'll figure it out.
    #4
  5. GSAragazzi

    GSAragazzi Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,961
    Location:
    The Purgatory of Suburbia
    God Speed. Loose yourself, strip, and find. Read my signature.
    #5
  6. LemonyLeprosy

    LemonyLeprosy Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2012
    Oddometer:
    36
    Location:
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    :muutt
    As of right now with all the weight so far back, its rather unstable on the kickstand, had to cut a block of wood to set under it to stabilize it a bit, otherwise the front wheel starts lifting off the ground.

    Dunno what a dry bag is but I'll look into it. I like the security of the ammo box, but yeah, it may not be working out well.

    -------------
    alright, the plan for tomorrow is to take the tent and sleeping bag out of the duffel bag and affix them to the outside, that'll leave enough room in the duffel bag for the contents of the ammo box, then ditch the ammo box and put the gas can where the ammo box is currently sitting. Thanks for the advice.
    also, i hear vegas is expecting a storm... may brave it out and go anyway... otherwise i'll just start heading east instead.
    #6
  7. CB160

    CB160 another old fart....

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2009
    Oddometer:
    80
    Location:
    SoCal (LAX)
    Hey LL,
    Ya might consider hitting an REI or camping store and get some solid luggage straps to 'assist' those bungie cords
    while you're 'rearranging' the luggage. Bungies can break and put you in a world of hurt real quick - especially with
    that kind of load. They're a couple bucks each and work much better than the big rubber bands.....
    Ride Safe and have fun!!
    #7
  8. motoreiter

    motoreiter Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,381
    Location:
    Berlin, Germany
    have a great trip, but you've got way too much stuff! lose at least half, including that ginormous box. rather than worrying about security better to focus on not bringing much you can't afford to lose, other than what can fit into a small bag you can bring with you all the time.

    if you want books, ditch the paper books and get a kindle or some kind of tablet, really makes things easier, and you won't miss paper soon enough..
    #8
  9. DeadlyBananaDog

    DeadlyBananaDog Fiat pastillus.

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2008
    Oddometer:
    323
    Location:
    They call it the Triangle
    Hoping to hear more...
    #9
  10. Comrade Art

    Comrade Art Working stiff

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    666
    Location:
    Oregon
    #10
  11. GeoDude

    GeoDude Oblio had a point

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Oddometer:
    67
    Location:
    Sacramento
    I can see this is going to be entertaining.

    Time to check in Lemony. We're all rooting for you buddy! :clap
    #11
  12. LemonyLeprosy

    LemonyLeprosy Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2012
    Oddometer:
    36
    Location:
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    A brief update:
    I made the mistake of getting a flu shot while in Bakersfield, so I've been down and out in LA with a ridiculously high fever, barely able to swallow. I depart again at 10am tomorrow, will be stopping to camp in the Mojave national preserve until the food that I bring in runs out, and then I continue on to Vegas, phoenix, and then I may head into Mexico as early as the 2nd or 3rd, as my passport is already being mailed back to me. Yay! (Btw, I ditched the ammo box, cut the gear in my duffel bag in half, got a dry bag to go inside of the duffel bag, and a small backpack to ride on top for easy access to my rain gear and maps/atlas. Thanks for all the input on the weight issues.)
    #12
  13. lexluther11

    lexluther11 Ride,Eat,Rest-Repeat

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,412
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    :lurk:1drink



    ps, buy some riding gear, believe me you'll be happy you did.
    #13
  14. Bustyrucket

    Bustyrucket Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    53
    Location:
    Dallas
    You can pick up some dry bags for pretty cheap at walmart. They have two little loops in the back that you can put bungee cords through to hold them down.
    #14
  15. Ghostyman

    Ghostyman Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    Oddometer:
    353
    Location:
    LA face with the Oakland booty
    Cool! Have fun in Mojave.

    Let's see the new gear setup too.
    #15
  16. LemonyLeprosy

    LemonyLeprosy Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2012
    Oddometer:
    36
    Location:
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    Finally back on the road. I spent an extra 2 weeks in L.A. catching up with an old friend, had a wonderful time.
    Here's the new set-up, version 3:

    [​IMG]

    I know, I know, still too much stuff. I'll continue to ditch things as I find that I don't use them.
    Bike handles great now - no wobble, nimble, easy. The backpack on top of everything is holding
    my rain gear and maps for easy access.

    I have a riding companion, his name is Webster. i've never actually seen him,
    but every morning when I break camp/leave, i break down his web,
    and the next morning the same web is back in the same position. i'm considering writing
    a childrens book about his adventures while i'm on the road.

    [​IMG]

    I left L.A. at 9:30 yesterday morning, and did a straight shot to Phoenix.
    Beautiful, uneventful ride. I love watching the landscape and plant life change from region to region.
    I saw one lone cow in the middle of the desert, 20 miles in any direction from *anything*,
    to which my reaction was "Holy sh!t, a cow!". Wish i had stopped for a picture.

    This next segment i call "pictures of various rest stops". Enjoy.:

    [​IMG]

    I love those wind generators. I forget just how large they are until i see them.
    It also appears that the time stamp on my camera is incorrect.

    [​IMG]

    Yet another rest stop. I spend a lot of time at these things. I also meet a lot of interesting "road folk" at them.

    [​IMG]

    Arizona rest stop sunset.

    [​IMG]

    Be cautious of children playing on teeter-totters in the middle of the street!

    Along my way through the desert i came across a motorcyclist at a truck stop,
    holding a sign saying "out of gas and stranded". I gave him $20, because that's a crappy position to be in.
    as i rode away, however, i realized that his bike had more stuff strapped to it than mine,
    and yet he also had a large dog with him, and no possible way to transport the dog with the bike.
    Something there doesn't quite add up. Oh well, hopefully he'll enjoy whatever he gets with the money regardless.

    While riding the I-10 through Arizona, the speed limit in multiple places was 75mph.
    Yeah right. I can hit that on a good day, going downhill. Nothing like being passed by semi after semi.
    No matter though, I'm in no rush.

    I rolled into Phoenix a little after dark.

    Got a late start today, headed out for Nogales, AZ, around 1:30pm.
    The ride was much quicker than expected.
    Tucson police are rather rude, or at least the one i ran into was. I tried to say hello,
    and engage him in conversation, but he just glared at me and went into the gas station to purchase a soda.
    Perhaps they're not all like that, but he should remember that he's representing the entire department,
    especially to tourists and people just passing through.
    I found myself getting more and more excited the closer i got to mexico,
    and i knew i must be close when i started seeing border patrol agents.

    I arrived in Nogales about 20 minutes before dark. Tomorrow morning i cross the border.
    Adventure and excitement await! *grin*

    I apologize again for the horrible formatting.
    #16
  17. GeoDude

    GeoDude Oblio had a point

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Oddometer:
    67
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Hey Lemony, it's great to see you back on the road again. I was beginning to wonder if your plans had changed.

    Enjoy the adventure and slay a few windmills for the rest of us. :freaky
    #17
  18. LemonyLeprosy

    LemonyLeprosy Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2012
    Oddometer:
    36
    Location:
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    Major setback. i'm still in Nogales. literally right as i got to the border,
    my engine started smoking and the bike dumped all its oil. right in front of the border patrol booth.
    they let me walk it back to the US, where two very helpful mexicans used their lunch break to help me
    tear down and diagnose the problem - blown gasket. we ghetto rigged it with silicone,
    hoping that it would hold for the 66 miles it is to the nearest motorcycle repair shop, in sierra vista, AZ.
    nope. it's still leaking. so now i'm holed back up at motel 6, trying to figure out a plan.
    i managed to convert my pesos back into dollars at a rather steep loss. a tow will cost me $250.
    the question is, do i tow it, or try to ride it and risk causing a ridiculous amount of damage?
    anyone know if theres a risk of fire from oil constantly leaking onto a hot exhaust manifold?
    i was taking it all in stride earlier, but i have to admit, i'm a little discouraged now. but only just a little.
    so now i'm here, laughing at myself and drinking a beer that i bought for 33 cents at the
    gas station i was stuck at all day.

    [​IMG]
    Juan, and the other guy who didnt speak any english. they did their best to help - they dont know that it didnt work.

    [​IMG]

    33 cent beer. tastes like piss.
    #18
  19. BamaTexRider

    BamaTexRider MOTO-MIKE

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2009
    Oddometer:
    49
    Location:
    Alabama and Texas
    Better it happened in us then mex. Good luck, Were pulling for u.
    #19
  20. mmmpies

    mmmpies 101 in a 55

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Oddometer:
    413
    Location:
    VA side of the Potomac
    What gasket blew? If its just your valve cover gasket I can get one FedEx overnight to you, maybe even by tomorrow.
    #20