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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by AntiHero, Mar 24, 2015.
After the 20 Mule Team Canyon I headed out to Badwater.
At -282 feet below Sea Level, Badwater is the lowest point in the US. Used to be the lowest point in the Western Hemisphere until something or other in Argentina was discovered that's -344. Still pretty cool.
I continued to head east on 190 towards the Funeral Mountains.
I hoped to find the same Coyotes that I'd run across last time I went through here on my bike.
But no dice.
It was a rare time of year when the flowers of DV were in bloom. Now, I don't come to this hostile place to smell (or pick) flowers, but them being here I figured I'd stop and see what the fuss was about.
Nothing special about 'em....other than the fact that those little red flecks of pollen are actually angry little red spiders. Cool!
A km or so up I saw some jackass who'd pulled off the side of the road and was picking huge handfuls of 'em. He was being so greedy that he didn't even notice the thousand or so spiders he was about to infest his minivan with. I just gave him a beep and a wave. Buon pomeriggio!
The fact Ducati has been so enthusiastic about my adventures demonstrates that Passion isn't just an empty marketing buzzword for 'em.
But it really comes down to this: If you chose the bike you lusted after, the bike you love to ride, then you chose the right bike(s). The thrill I get every time I hit the starter is what keeps my wheels in motion.
I've enjoyed reading much of what you've posted. I must say, however, that this statement is the best so far. It captures the essence of motorcycling for so many of us...regardless of the make or model of the bike(s) we ride.
Agreed...My favorite Antihero quote is, "In 2012 I hit the starter button on my Panigale and hit the reset button on my life"
:) So true. How much it reset my life I could have never imagined. And every subsequent time the motor fires up I find myself in a new adventure. Some are quiet and personal, some boisterous and grand. But every time I return slightly changed.
After Death Valley: Los Angeles.
Now, I reckon this is probably what most people think of when they think of LA:
It's for real, but it's not LA, it's San Diego (La Jolla, actually).
The image below better represent the reality of 98% of LA:
It's a city of conflicting extremes. Gangs, Hollywood Stars, Ghettos, Beverly Hills, Sunny Beaches, Endless Strip-Malls and always, always, always Epic Traffic. This contradictory, brutal nature of LA isn't for the weak. To live here, you've got to build up no small amount of tolerance for stress. LA is ugly, disordered, chaotic.
But like any jungle, where there's disorder, there's adventure:
You don't survive here by being the fittest. You survive by adapting. At some point, the ataxia begins to exhilarate and you find yourself inspired by your ability to survive it all.
Actually AH, my imagination has always seen L.A. pretty much as you describe it in the opening words of that final paragraph and for that reason, I've never felt compelled to pay a visit, much preferring locations that exhibit vistas of natural unspoilt beauty.
But isn't that what most Adventure riders seek? To escape the confines of the civilisation we've built for ourselves.
Great photos, AH!!
How did you choose your path in DV? Can you map it?
Anti, I'm not generally one for gushing, but I gotta give credit where it's due. I've always had the fire for travel by motorcycle, but over the last few years it had reduced to a glowing pile of embers, evidneced by a single ride report I have on this site from 5 years ago. A trip idea came up a couple months back that began to fan the dying flame, which lead me to reading more and more ride reports before stumbling across yours (yes, all of them). In doing so, a gallon of gasoline has been dumped on those flames, and inspiration has been rampant in my head.
I leave for my trip in just over 6 weeks, on a used-but-new-to-me bike that has little business doing the trip I intend to take it on. Your reports have caused me to entirely overhaul the manner in which I travel by bike, the manner in which I plan my trip and in some ways the manner in which I intend to do my ride report.
Thank you for being that little nudge I needed to try things a little differently than I have in the past. I feel as though I'm rediscovering motorcycling through a fresh lens.
This is gonna be a good one.
xl1200r: It's messages like yours that remind me that all the effort involved in putting a ride report is worth it. I'm excited for you. Shoot me the link to your R/R (if you decide to do one) when it's up.
Horizons: "But isn't that what most Adventure riders seek? To escape the confines of the civilisation we've built for ourselves." Well put, sir!
Death Valley is a tough place to route because there are so many things worth seeing, but most things worth seeing are at the end of dead-end roads/trails, making travel around the park a ricochet kind of affair.
Due to limited time, I didn't get to half the number of places I would have liked to go on the Scrambler. My route was Titus Canyon to Furnace Creek, then to 20 Mule Team Canyon, then Badwater (and then exit).
What I think you're probably looking for is an ideal trip, which to me, would look like this:
From the West:
Take 190 East, then hang a left on Saline Valley "Road" (watch for it or you'll miss it). Traverse at your own risk if it's "closed" (I've always survived--but would recommend avoiding if it's snowing, as the 4x4 only roads are treacherous enough in the dry). Follow to Jackass Canyon, then wind your way into The Racetrack.
Titus Canyon (Camp for the night)
20 Mule-Team Canyon
Back to Furnace Creek (Inn)
(Back to Furnace Creek)
Mahogany Flat (Camp for the night)
Hike to Telescope Peak (Mahogany Flat is the trailhead)
If you look at Google Maps, you'll see why I couldn't route it out. The only map worth anything for DV is the National Geographic one. It's on Amazon and REI sells it.
Camping in DV is permitted 2 miles from any paved road. No need to worry about rattlesnakes or scorpions--esp. on the hike to Telescope Peak, as nothing except Bristlecone pines and shrubs live above 8,000 feet.
I really dig real world reports. I'm stoked you got a press bike. Every reader has always thought "Man, if they tossed me the keys to that, I would..."
I'm glad the Scrambler has been turned out well. I was fearful that it would be a plasticy plaything of a bike and not robust enough to carry the Scrambler moniker.
It was my pleasure my friend! It was great seeing you, and as I've said before...mi casa su casa...and perhaps more importantly...my garage is your garage (not sure how to say that in Spanish)😎
You bet I'm doing a report and you bet I'll send it along. (also mostly replying to your reply to show that my username changed, haha).
Mi motocicleta casa su motocicleta casa ???
Thank you. sir!
Best Scrambler review to-date.
The other press bikes have gone to waste, with moto-journalists tripping over their hi-top laces primping for photo-shoots and telling us the basic specs and marketing we get from Ducati.
Best Scrambler photos, too.
Ducati made a wise choice (letting you take a ride) - and obviously have faith in their product to let you take it into the wild.
Really getting interested in this bike - as a half-way between a 690r and bigger ADV bike. Ducati should give you one for an RTW ride . . . of course after you're done on the Panigale
I love the look of the scrambler and really liked the way it felt, sitting on it at the motorcycle show.
This RR is really making me want one.
Before I picked up my ST4, I toured in minimalistic fashion on my monster 900. I loved the openness on the monster, but long days got a little cramped. I think the scrambler would be more comfortable.
Many thanks again, No Good ID!
pitbull: I've never ridden a Monster, only sat on one, so I'm afraid I can't be of help with a comparison.
kvango: Thanks for the positive words, dude! I'd fookin' love to do a RTW trip on a Scrambler. Damn would I ever.
A little lunch:
Then a little more screwing around in LA:
And then off to the beach:
(You'd think a city that has an average home price of $3.7 million would actually be able to afford a decent m'fin sign!)