Stooges Eat Baja Surf and Turf

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by drrags, Mar 20, 2010.

  1. drrags

    drrags Dorkus Malorkus

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    1,881
    Location:
    Reno, NV
    This report describes my last leg of my failed South America trip.

    Here's a teaser of eating some turf:
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    I met up with SheepShagger, BlakeBird, and edeslaur in San Diego for a blast down Baja. As usual, we had an excellent time. You can't beat Baja!

    Sheepshagger and I pulled the bikes from Houston. 26 mind-numbing hours.
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    And here they are, all jammed up in Erics garage the night before we left.
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    I think Blake had to contend with some snow out of Colorado so I'll stop here for now in an attempt to get all coordinated and stuff. :lol3
    #1
  2. Blakebird

    Blakebird Solo Backwardo

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    Snow? In Colorado in March? :dunno
    From Aguilar, CO over Raton Pass to Santa Fe was the worst.

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    Once I got south of Socorro, the storm had moved east and was ruining the driving experience on I-40 from Santa Rosa to Tucumcari.

    I left the house at 2am and drove straight thru 1100 miles to Yuma. The next day the weather was what we'd see for the next week.
    The Ramona hills are beautiful.

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    #2
  3. edeslaur

    edeslaur San Diegan

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Sandy Eggo
    While these guys were driving from as far as half the country away from my house, I was at home, enjoying good, clean sunshine.

    I was a late add to the party as the original plan(s) were very different. Here's the events leading to Day 0.

    Day -14 (no clue I'm going to Baja)
    My son and I had just done some offroad riding at one of the ORV parks in San Diego. I'd been working long hours and really wasn't up for a day, but Andrew had been so patient, and [appropriately] insistent, we went. What a great time.

    My Husky hadn't been out in about 6 months. Consider what happened, and you'll see why I think taking this trip was extremely fortuitous! All this could have happened in Baja!
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    Literally 20 minutes into the ride, we're watching some folks give a steep sand uphill a try when I smelled gas. Some poor sod was in trouble.

    Hey, wait, it's MY bike! Gas dripped down the rear left-hand petcock and pooled on the ground. It was not a slow leak. 3 drained gallons later (extra gas can and Suburban) and the gas level was below the crack. That left me 2 gallon capacity to enjoy the rest of the day. :clap 1

    While we were out there, we practiced our flat-track skills, both taking a few tumbles (Andrew tells me I biffed it 7 times). I keep my SPOT on my water-pack (backpack), and ended up riding on it for a few feet after one particularly good lowside. It looks rugged now, but still works just fine. The offroad helmet I ride with has seen its fair share of crashes, so any new scratches were not evident. LOL

    Andrew is pretty new to the 65 (had a CRF 50) and made tremendous progress on his clutching skills. He also enjoyed lofting the front just about every chance he got! LOL

    The rear shock has gotten spongy and easy to bottom, so I was taking it pretty easy on stuff I would normally keep the gas wicked on - especially the whoops. It's not terrible, but it's not good, but I haven't had the budget to send it in and is one reason the bike's been sitting so much.

    That made it all the more surprising when, later that evening, as I'm manhandling the bike around the garage to move it out of the way and onto my stand to get the tank off, I realize it feels very familiar. Yes, the last time I'd felt this, someone had broken a subframe bolt on their Husky. In Baja.
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showpost.php?p=6471778&postcount=57

    Here's what both of my subframe bolts looked like. The broken one comes from the right side. The other bit had already vibrated itself out, so I was on Easy Street! :D
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    I swapped bolts using a handy-dandy-subframe-lifter-upper. It was dark, what do you expect from a flashless iPhone? :deal Anyone from OBH read this? There's my magnet, making my freezer rad! :lol3
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    Here's what I found when I pulled the tank.
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    Day -10 (no plans to do Baja)
    I called up to IMS, yes they had my tank. Yes, it was under warranty. Yaaay!! I'd be right up!

    Work conspired against me, and I was not able to get there.

    Day -4 (no plans to do Baja)
    I made it up to IMS in Riverside and swapped tanks. Heck yes I rode up there on my K1200S...

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    Day -3 - the phone calls...
    Gang: Hey, Eric, we've changed plans and are going to Baja so you can come!
    Eric: Hell yeah! :clap Errrrr, I'm not ready, my rear shock is toast, I'm not packed, I have 2 big presentations at work next week... Crap! I better get hopping!! :D

    First up, the exhaust shield has decided it doesn't want to be part of the bike team... This fix lasted about 30 miles before being replaced with hose clamps. D'oh! :lol3 Yep, lack of penetration on the weld.
    But this is where Husky should have bolted the thing to begin with.
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    Some months ago I'd bought an extra set of TE610 wheels. The rear ended up being from a 450 or possibly a 510 (anyone need the bigger disc brake?), but worked fine when I swapped my disc over. So much for having an extra disc (anyone have one they want to get rid of cheap or trade for the other disc?)

    Just a few days before, I'd finally mounted my Michelin dirt tire to the matching front wheel without carefully looking it over beforehand (trusting? Stupid? Both?). I'd done this to save the time of taking off my Pirelli Scorpion from my wheel. Earlier that day I'd ridden the Husky to work for a shakedown run and noticed the bars vibrated back and forth. And the speedo magnet was missing. Looking down at 50 (those radar things on the side of the road)... wow, it was pretty tweaked. Later that night, one of the gang pointed out it was also cracked. :huh

    It has been a few months since I'd bought the wheels from an inmate here, but someone's going to get an email later today anyways since they've just been sitting in a box (yes, my bad and I get what I get).

    Back on with my original front wheel, adding a mid-thickness tube at the same time. I thought about swapping the regular tube out of the rear and just ran out of time.

    So... yep - other than the tank and the subframe, the exhaust shield was the only thing that got fixed. Baja with a marginal rear shock. You know what? I didn't care! :norton

    Day -1
    Here's Blake crashed on the guest house couch. :D
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    Now if only my garage looked like this EVERY day! :wink: (another quality iPhone pic. I promise they get better!)
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    I was super-jazzed to be going, but as of this pic, I still wasn't fully packed! :eek1

    Plus I was only going down for 4 days out of the 10 available as I had work conflicts. But I was super-pleased to be making that as this bunch of pirates are a hoot to hang out with! :freaky
    #3
  4. edeslaur

    edeslaur San Diegan

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    447
    Location:
    Sandy Eggo
    Turns out my buddy from AZ who's been staying with us this past week knows a guy who does killer suspension work, and has absconded back to his home with my shock and forks. :clap I can't wait to get 'em back.

    He also took our CRF50 and XR80 for his girls, so I'm looking for a very clean CRF230 or equivalent for my youngest daughter now. :D

    Barter rocks (yes, I'm getting cash back, duh!)!

    He didn't need the '04 TRX90 quad, so it'll be going into the sale/trade pile to fund new bikes and college degrees!

    Back to our regularly scheduled trip report!
    #4
  5. Blakebird

    Blakebird Solo Backwardo

    Joined:
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    We rode thru the beautiful green hills headed south to hwy 94 to Tecate, where we'd cross. We stopped briefly for some reason or another - I think Arno wanted to change money here. Last time I was here was on a streetbike ride enjoying hwy 94 out to Jacumba. Great roads in the area around Japatul, Lyons Valley...

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    We parked in the shade after crossing and got our paperwork done, which meant a long walk up the hill from the bank, The bank was packed with people, we were in there for a while.


    From Tecate, we took MX2 libre east to La Rumorosa and had lunch and topped off with gas. There were tracks we'd follow south that would take us through the Parque Nacional Constitucion de 1857.
    #5
  6. Nata Harli

    Nata Harli Accidental Tourista

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    :lurk
    :lurk
    :lurk

    Just an FYI - most of you now qualify for ALARR III. The only exception would be drrags. He was at ALARR II last year and the organizing committee has not voted yet on whether or not to let him return this year. You guys, having spent some time with him, will understand our dilema. :evil :lol3
    #6
  7. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

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    Not much to report on the trip to Eric's. I cut out of work early to find Arno moaning & groaning about his damper not arriving in time for the trip. So after a few snide remarks about his lack of manhood and sexual tendency :ymca, he was raring to go. So we loaded up Shamoo and hit the road by about 7pm.
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    24 hours and ~1500 miles later we got to Eric's. No sign of Eric, but his family are there entertaining Blake. They looked VERY bored, and seemed to be glad of the distraction. Eric's daughters then proceed to inform Arno and I that Blake has been watching Hanna Montana all afternoon and has enjoyed it so much, he even watched one episode twice. They seemed a bit concerned that there Farther was going to be taking a trip with a man of this caliber.
    After a great dinner, Eric arrives home and informs us he has not done his packing yet, then proceeds to rush about the house throwing miscellaneous items into his bags and top case, complaining he can't find what he needs. Arno and I just sit back, drink some beer and watch the show.
    The Hana Montana excitement during the day must have been a bit too much for Blake, as he heads off to bed early, leaving just Arno and I to make fun of Eric. At about 11pm or so, Eric can't find his $15 wallmart tent he bought for our last Baja trip, so we head to Wallmart to buy another tent. Eric finds a $10 tent this time and can hardly hold his excitement back at this great purchase. (This purchase causes endless fun for me later on in the trip).
    #7
  8. edeslaur

    edeslaur San Diegan

    Joined:
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    Sandy Eggo
    Getting ahead of ourselves. Write this down, you will likely never hear me say this again - slow down! :rofl

    Gentle (ha!) Readers, you'll see why this might be funny as this trip report progresses.

    Ready for Day 1 to Tecate, gents? :deal
    #8
  9. edeslaur

    edeslaur San Diegan

    Joined:
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    Sandy Eggo
    I had resolved myself to take more pictures this trip. I even brought a not-crappy camera which didn't post dates onto the images (metadata, Kodak, metadata!!!).

    In retrospect, I'll call it way better than in the past. I thought I took an huge number of pictures, but the final count disagrees with my perception. Reality is tough, but I have a helmet, so I'm cool with it!

    Since I had just installed my tank in the last couple of days and been prepping, of course I needed gas.
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    Everyone else followed suit, except Blake as he'd already filled up the day before while I was slaving over a hot laptop at work. :D

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    The requisite border-crossing paperwork mambo
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    You know you're getting older when the hill down to the bank looks imposing on your way back up it. And you start breathing hard! :lol3
    #9
  10. katbeanz

    katbeanz earthbound misfit, I

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    "Blake has been watching Hanna Montana all afternoon" :ear :wave :lurk
    #10
  11. the darth peach

    the darth peach eats crackers in bed

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    :lurk
    #11
  12. Blakebird

    Blakebird Solo Backwardo

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    Parker, CO
    :lol3 :bluduh

    Hiya, Dean :wave
    hey, it's a Netflix house full of teenagers. What's a guy to do?

    Then Eric made me sit thru half of Howard the Duck the day I got back, as if I hadn't had a rough enough day already :poser

    The paperwork mambo in Tecate was typical 'hurry up and wait', with a long uphill hike in MX boots thrown in to add to the pleasure.

    So, my next pictures are when we were waiting for Arno (aka "I've fallen and can't pick up my bike") well south of La Rumorosa....so I'm waiting for y'all to catch up.

    From Tecate, we took MX2 libre east to La Rumorosa for lunch and to top off the tanks before heading south.
    Wish I'd gotten a picture of all the crap flying out of Eric's top box once we got on the dirt. I stopped and picked up some stuff that flew out, and he wondered where I was, so he turned around. He saw me motoring and figured all was ok - so he turns back around, flies off a berm and more stuff came flying out.
    I stopped again to pick it up, thought we'd be doing this until he had nothing left to fall out of his topbox and I was carrying it all.:D
    #12
  13. MortimerSickle

    MortimerSickle Semi-Adventurer

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    :lurk
    #13
  14. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    So, Day 1 of the actual ride started with us getting up at the crack of dawn with the intentions of getting an early start, one thing led to another and we were still fartarsing around at 9 or so.
    Eric announced his wife had made Biscuits and Gravy for brecky. Not being a great fan of the pancake style breakfast you get in the states, I generally steer clear of anything other than Bacon & Eggs since all that stoge just make me feel sick for the day. So I was a little dubious, but since I had never had it before and it was made just for us, I couldn't refuse. Dam it was good. :dg
    I had no idea there was sausage in the gravy, I had always thought it was just lumpy crap when I had seen it before, not at all what I expected.

    So after brecky, we set off to the Tecate border crossing, great roads and an empty and uneventful border crossing. From here we had decided to follow the border east to Rumorosa and start our drop south into Baja on dirt following some tracks I had that headed through a park. (I can't remember the name)
    The road ride was normal and uneventful. But the dirt tracks south turned out to be a great ride, few wrong turns and dead ends into washed out rivers and such had to be navigated, but know-one seemed to mind the constant backtracking they were doing by following my crappy lead. Well if they did, they stayed quiet which is very strange from this crowd.
    The road sweeped through the normal Baja style open plane sand, but then all of a sudden climed a hill and you were into a great pine forest, very different from the normal Baja trails.

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    The road was red mud or sand with a few rocks here and there. We had a few stops on the way to regroup and had the normal BS making fun of each other. When we got to the top of one hill to re-group, there was no Arno behind us.
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    Blake Eric & I waited for 5 or 10 mins and still no Arno, so Eric set off backtracking to find Arno, while Blake and I stayed put.
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    #14
  15. edeslaur

    edeslaur San Diegan

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    447
    Location:
    Sandy Eggo
    Man that rear shock was soft!

    Before we headed into the dirt, we did some pavement. And we ate.

    Blake - my feet still thank you for picking up my socks!! :lol3

    We stopped somewhere for lunch after Tecate.

    Shaun was on his 950SE, turning him into instant-Superman. Look, he even looks like it sitting there for our meal!
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    Where in the US can you watch them make your tortillas, by hand!, right in the dining room? :D
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    And self-responsibility is important, as Arno was taller than the exhaust, and the stove was hot, hot, hot. I love Baja!

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    Just before this great meal, we worked on my throttle.

    Apparently some of those lowsides from our flat-track practice **eventually** caused the throttle to stick. One washer from Arno's Guatemalan stash and I was ready to rock again!

    After that, we headed for some dirt!

    Oops... wrong turn?
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    Before the mud section in Shaun's post, here comes Blake!
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    We waited for Arno for a while. And a while longer. After counting 3 minutes, it was time to head back, so I loaded up and hauled tushy!

    Hey, Arno - what'd I find? :eek1

    #15
  16. Blakebird

    Blakebird Solo Backwardo

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    The road south thru the Parque Nacional Constitucion de 1857 sure didn't look like much as you left La Rumorosa to the south, but it was fun to be in the dirt finally.
    A couple of wrong forks in the road taken, we found ourselves on the doorstep of an old trailer, where an older guy stepped out and told us this was the road that went through, and it took about two hours to get somewhere....either through or to the park.

    As long as it was the right road, that was all we needed to know. It branched off a couple of times along the way, and as it climbed big granite rock formations into piney forest, we were having a good ride.

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    We stopped to regroup here, and like he says.... no Arno. There was some sand and a bit of a rocky climb we thought might have slowed him up some - but after a reasonable wait and he still wasn't there, Eric headed back.

    While we waited, a couple of 4x4 trucks came bashing thru, just getting pounded on the rough rocky road in a hurry - or at least not caring about beating the piss out of their trucks.

    Shaun and I waited a while ourselves....then figured it was time to backtrack and see if there was a problem. We backtracked quite a bit, to a big fork in the road we'd seen on the way up and hesitated at to make sure it wasn't the way to go.

    Shaun waited there and I took the fork a few miles west... and there was a pair of knobby tracks I was following, so at this point I was pretty sure Eric had seen Arno tracks and went after Arno, who must have turned there. That was my deduction at least...

    I came back to the fork in the road, and heard voices...the group was coming and not far away at all. The tire tracks I saw were from some other pair of bikes, glad I didn't stay with them longer.

    Reunited, we continued back up the road, seeing the occasional camping park along the way off either side of the road. With shadows getting long, we still had plenty of daylight, but figured we were probably only going to make it partially down this road and would end up looking for a campsite before too long.

    There was a nice mud bog here, but you can't see much of it, and I went kinda far past it to get any pictures of anyone that might have issues getting across.

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    Just after it, we came across another spot that looked like it might be a place to stop for the night, so we pulled in to find out more. I'll stop here in case anyone has good pics of the ride to this point that needs to get caught up.

    This was a remote place, and we were the only ones there... they had basic rooms, food and beer on site - sounds good so far!

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    #16
  17. drrags

    drrags Dorkus Malorkus

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    1,881
    Location:
    Reno, NV
    Little did I know that even though I was full from an excellent meal, I would eat some dirt a little later:
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    Nice weather, nice road, what more could you ask for?
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    I didn't expect to find this altitude and a pine forest. We are all happy to be here like kids getting off the short bus.
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    I'm in last place, merrily going down the sandy road, hugging the right side to avoid getting all squirrelly with the big bike in the heavy sand. I usually don't care about bushes and tree limbs and stuff. I'd rather plow through them than change my line. In this case I hit a tree limb that didn't budge, but knocked me, my bike and my bars stupid. The next thing I know, I'm crossing the track at about 30 mph heading for a bush. Nothing to do but go for the ride.
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    I tried everything I could think of to un-wedge the bike out from under the bush, but it was stuck. Even after removing all of the luggage I couldn't budge it. Eric came up after awhile and manhandled the bike back on two wheels for me.
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    The offending tree branch. Talk about a sudden course change!
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    Ok, that was one of the turf parts of the Surf-n-Turf.

    After we climbed out of the sand road we got to a plateau where all the water was collecting. It really wasn't too bad, but one particular puddle (lake?) had a hidden rut in it that I got crossed up on. At least that's how I'm tellin' it :deal The surf part of the Surf-n-Turf:
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    It was a real mess here. Eric having fun in the slop:
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    What a great area though.
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    We stop just past the muck and consider where we're going to call it a day, when lo and behold, someone says "is that a hotel?" Indeed it was, and just as we're wondering if they were open, a pickup comes up to us. It turns out they are the owners/workers and indeed confirm that it's open for business.

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    It's beautiful up here and reminds me a lot of Alpine, Arizona:
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    Next stop; The Lake of Rocks.
    #17
  18. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Where men are men and sheep get nervous
    So after Eric retrieved Arno we were back on our way, I can say enough about how much fun this road was. Here are some other pic's of Eric and Arno getting through the slop just before we stopped for the night.
    Eric was having so much fun, he went through about 5 or 6 times trying to find a nice line for Arno to follow, who was very dubious about getting through all the mud.
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    And where we stayed that night. This place is well worth a visit, and the ride to and from is great.
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    #18
  19. joenuclear

    joenuclear Ride to eat, eat to ride... all roads lead to pie!

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    :lurk Looking good!
    #19
  20. MortimerSickle

    MortimerSickle Semi-Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Good to see you got your crashing out of the way early.

    Now you can concentrate on the ride. :D
    #20