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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by MoToad, Jul 19, 2012.
Wow Red. You know Spanish now?
Excellent. Saw your blog with u climbin that honkin pyramid. Awesome.
The morning had me riding the Long Island ferry.
Once again, not much to see as a fog hung over all.
The ride down thru Long Island was enjoyable with me missing any of the rain they were talking about. The whole New York thing has had me biting my nails and asking people what they thought about my proposed route. Lots of advice but really, it was all Greek to me as I stumbled on blindly. I am really feeling that Garmin maps have taken some steps backwards as road and highway designations are often totally different from Google maps. But I followed my preprogrammed route and, as I got closer to the Big A, I got into the shit. The ride along Long Beach, Rockaway and the Shore Parkway had me seeing it all. The big butt Hos. The corner 'drugstores'. The works. Finally onto the Staten Is. Expressway got me landed there right in rush hour. Across the bridge and the longest four mile climb up the hill thru the aforementioned rush hour AND road construction had my fingers aching and that big clutch squeaking. As I got rolling a bit the New Jersey Turnpike took me most of the way thru Staten Island where I promptly bailed and took a hotel room. And, the biggest letdown was my plan to SEE NY. I mean just see it while driving by. The fog took care of that. Never saw a building.
Not a big deal. Gonna spend my time at DC.
The next morning did provide me with a great ride down to Atlantic City. Perfect conditions. 72 degrees, no wind, little traffic.
I started getting a crazy idea that I might hang out here for a day and, what? Even gamble. A ride thru the concrete, glass and steel had me remembering my last three day stint in Las Vegas and how I couldn't wait to get outta there. It just aint me. So I carried on down the coast. A very pleasant ride.
Three PM and I am at Cape May.
Turns out it's a six PM sailing. So a bunch of book reading took place. The temp was now up to about 78 and the humidity felt like the tropics. Time to peel off the gear and wait it out.
We leave in the haze but within twenty minutes a bit of a wind is happening, clearing the haze and humidity.
Then comes the big bonus. A most awesum sunset, dudes!
Took waaay to many pics but, what the hell.
Writing from Delaware right now with an intended ride right into DC. Gotta book a couple of days and use the Metro.
Can u believe it? Supposed to be 80+ degrees today. Gotta love it.
The ride into the capitol was fairly painless. It was Friday but I timed it before rush hour. Highway 50 turned out to be a pleasant straight route taking me right close to the hotel I booked.The only problem was the hotel I booked. Or, at least finding it. I had used Expedia and got a great rate at just around $100 a night. It was close to Union Station and looked pretty swank. Finding it was a little bit of a chore. The address led me to the entrance of a University with no sign of a hotel. The name was the Kellogg Conference Hotel but I could find no sign of it. I pulled up beside a cop just outside of the campus and inquired. She had never heard of it. A closer look at my confirmation email showed it 'at Gallaudet U. I went into the U and was directed to i, a large new building in the center of the campus. The good deal went up in smoke when I as informed I would be paying $20 a day in parking. Whatever! Turns out thee U is a school for the deaf and so there was a lot of silence involved with the place. Suites me fine.
The shuttle took me to Union Station
A bit of a walk had me in front of the Capitol Building with a view of the vast expanse of buildings and monuments I would be trying to conquer.
The weather couldn't have been better at around 80 degrees.
Castles and big, pointy things lay ahead.
Had to get a pic of this dude.
I mean, with my home town about to spend hundreds of thousands on a fleet of Victory cop bikes it is nice to see a practical set of sporty Harleys that are easy to handle and definitely keep the costs down.
The next mornings sunrise from my fancy room
I did the big walk.
To see the big guy.
And, in the words of Michael Rennie, 'Now there's a guy I'll bet I could talk to.' Or something like that.
And, of course, the words of eloquence.
Always wanted to see the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum so that was the topper for the day.
And, my hero, Chucks' wild ride.
And, of course, the Rise of the Machines.
Day three and the big weather change. Drizzle with a huge drop in temp.It was the reason I decided to haang one more day. Didn't feel like setting out into the rain.
Went for the Natural Science Museum first. Got to see one of my first ancestors. Or a bit of him.
Something a buddy of mine is involved in.
A lotta of dead stuff and of course, The Stone of Wisdom.
Wanted to scratch 'Toad was here' way down at the bottom but thought I'd better not.
Then it was on to the Vietnam memorial to pay my respects.
The Smithsonian Castle on the way
Where I hear they actually have the real Sleeping Beauty.(Stuffed, of course.)
This era effected me profoundly as I actually knew people involved and when hitchhiking thru California in '72, while camping on a beach north of Malibu, I became friends with badly wounded and recovering hospitalized vets who would come out to the beach daily with their nurses. I heard the stories and saw the results.
Ended the day at a local Irish sports bar watching three different football games and eating some way too salty food.
This morning I am seeing a bit of sun with aparrent rain to ride into as I head west.
Everybody has said I really have to ride the Blue Ridge Parkway so I am makig the big detour before getting back to the coast. Hope the tires last that long.
If your plans include Georgia coast/South Georgia, let me know if you want to meet for coffee or a beer. Glad to see that you visited the Vietnam Memorial. It seems to have become a healing place for some, after its controversial beginning. When you have 4 minutes to kill, here is a video I did last year.
Enjoying your trip report and pics Doug !
Heading south sounds good to me ....
Sent ... Me.
Bubba! My man! Remember. If you don't sell that truck, I'm gonna need one when I get back.
And so, the Parkway. Gotta say the ride out of DC was fairly painless being a holiday and all. And, surprise surprise, the programmed route on the Garmin worked fairly flawlessly without leading me astray. The countryside leading over to the start of Skyline Drive just got more and more beautiful. The temp was dropping tho and I was layering up all the way. I figured the weather gods were shining on me as I was spared any real rainfall.
Grey skies loomed on the distant ridge but the forecast was for clearing and cold. As I pulled into the hotel at Front Royal, a whole group of Harleys and two Beemers were unloading in front of me. Seems there was lots of room at the Inn and the attendant even gave me their rate. These guys had an interesting story. From Florida, they rode the train to near this spot to ride the bikes down the Parkway, back to Florida. The package included bike transport, a sleeper cabin and even meals on the train. Incredably at around $300. Why so cheap? The only reason they could offer is because the company is heavily involved at this time of year with actually shipping RVs and people south and the trains are going back empty. who knows.
One of the group turned me onto a general store loaded with cool stuff just across the road and, like him, I was over there buying thermals.This wasn't supposed to happen. I was supposed to stay ahead of the winter. Well, hopefully soon I can get back to the warm stuff.
Cold to start, with a couple thou feet to rise, it was getting colder before it got warmer.
It was mid afternoon before I started removing the layers.
But the ride was everything it was supposed to be. And with a minimus of traffic there'll be no more bitchin from me. (ya, right!)
Beautiful safe curves and winding roads laced with fall colors. The Skyline and Blueridge have 45 mph speed limits and, tho I had warnings about watching out for Smokie, he seemed to be in hibernation. I did it at a comfortable 50 to 60 tops with Big Gal singing her sweet tune.
The weather continued to improve as the cold front moved in.
Spectacular countryside with all that Civil War history.
Holed up in Roanoke and met with my new friend (and east coast advisor) Peter.
Probably the only other 2012 NTX owner on the east coast. Peter is on his way to the annual Barber Vintage motorcycle event. Had I known I would have scheduled this event into the ride. I am an avid reader of Classic Motorcycle mag which often has articles on and advertises Barber events. Unfortunately, my subscription lies back in BC and I haven't seen the mag in months.
And now Big Gal is in dire need of new shoes and, now that she is grown up, a bit of internal sprucing up. No cosmetic surgery, she just doesn't need it being already so well endowed and beautiful.
Peter's talk of Redline has me now pointed in that direction. It cuts my Blueridge ride a bit short but the new shoes won't wait. My query about tires has me trying out a set of Pilot Road 3 Trails. I have been told that they are longer lasting and at a $200 savings, worth a try.
So, this day starts at a pleasant 40 degrees and sunny as I turn to the coast.
Wow, I'm relating to you on so many levels:
HUGE fan of Chuck and Abe
The Wall is powerful
Losing an entire post! Grrr... (Yes, do it in Word or some other doc processing app first and then cut/paste.)
Need shoes too
Love the report and pics. Keep it up and all the best!
Thanks DJB. Can I call u DL for short? How bout yerself? any plans? Or more specific, gettin (got?) a bike? On the road yet? Winter's comin!:eek1
Yep, the truck is about to go onsale ... if you are serious about wanting it. Let me know. BTW ... when do you get back this way ?
Ah, many miles to go Jim. Prolly Aprilish. As I said, I'm gonna need one but don't hang on to it on my account.
Subscribed. Wednesday I do a fly and ride from Richmond Virginia to Albuquerque New Mexico. I received my motorcycle license last week. I will be buying a KLR. I have no plans. I like your report.
The Roanoke morning was 'Nippy but Nice'. Seems to be the flavor of the day, these days. Can't complain with the rest of the country looking so nasty. The route I laid out to the Yorktown area was filled with beautiful shade tree roads.
One of them had the single hidden pothole that the big Gal had to find.
And WHUMP! Banged thru it and GB went into her bad running routine. Noticeably more vibration thru all ranges.I got to a motel just down the road from Redline, unloaded and gave the girl a well deserved wash at a carwash.
Left her for the full next day for service, tune and tires.
This place has quite a large inventory of awesome bikes.
Picked the bike up at the end of the day with some good news and some bad news. The PR3Trails have quite a different tread pattern and take a bit of getting used to. There was water in the front bearings and I can only hope it came from the pressure wash. They are recommending bearing replacement. The front tires was the cause of my wobble and not the rim. The discs however at warped a bit. Couldn't get rid of the decel pop because one of the two into one points on the exhaust has a leak caused by someone pulling it apart and damaging the gasket. This had to be the factory guy because they have never been apart. It is also something that has been bugging me since I left and I wish they had offered to repair it. Pretty easy fix, by the look of it. Undo the right header and pull out of the clamp, clean out the mess and replace with the proper gasket. Just need to find one. They even said the lower shock tubes have play in them and are recommending seal and bushing rebuild. The ECU remap has the bike running cooler (beneficial for when I get to that hot weather, wherever it is,lol) and smoother thru all ages. I feel it has lost a bit of its raw power that really came on in the higher rev ranges. When I used to rejet carbed bikes for a richer mix I would also notice this loss. But I am sure this is adding longer life to the engine. They found the sync and TPS out of whack so I am really feeling that all it takes is a good smack. not a good thing for a supposed dual sport bike.
Anyways, I hit the road the next day for an enjoyable ride in and out and around all the inlets and rivers south of here.
First stop was Bubba's for brunch.
Then on to Kitty Hawk and Nags Head for sand and kites and a really big fish that some 14 year old kid had caught.
Then some very straight deserted roads for a good 100 miles that BG was happy to rip along at 90 mph.
Then lunch. Picnic tables, side of the road, middle of nowhere. Had my tater salad, water, what have you, packed up, hit the starter and, click, and click, and click, click, click. Nothing.
Got off, pulled everything apart, went thru all the fuses and still nothing. Redline was open, maybe I'll give em a call. And....no service. AT&T, damn you!
I tried to jar the starter with a small bump and still got nothing. Then I did what anybody who has ever owned a beater would do. Whacked the starter. And, lo and behold, it started. Not about to shut it off, I loaded back up and carried on to Washington (the little one) and checked into sleazebag hotel, extraordinaire. This one was waaaay cheap and smelled it. Walked out to the bike and absolutely no starting. Rolled her to in front of the room and unpacked. Got out the tools to find the bottol Allen screw on the Starter motor cover was stripped. GOD! I really need to do all, and I mean all, the work on this bike myself. Luckily again, I had packed a small set of hex sockets and was able to wrangle the mangle outta there. Found slightly dirty grounds on both the bottom and top bolts so I cleaned them up with a scrubby. Then I found the clip on wire from the ignition was off. When I pushed it back on it was rather loose so I squeezed it a bit. Still not real tight but OK for now. I am sure this was the problem and all is good to go. How it got knocked off, I can only speculate.
The adventure continues.
Oh y. And Redline? Very good, very professional. A good rep for Guzzi.
GOD! I really need to do all, and I mean all, the work on this bike myself. Luckily again, I had packed a small set of hex sockets and was able to wrangle the mangle outta there. Found slightly dirty grounds on both the bottom and top bolts so I cleaned them up with a scrubby. Then I found the clip on wire from the ignition was off. When I pushed it back on it was rather loose so I squeezed it a bit. Still not real tight but OK for now. I am sure this was the problem and all is good to go. How it got knocked off, I can only speculate.
The adventure continues.[/QUOTE]
Nothing is more aggravating than having to fix your bike right after you paid a pro to fix it.
I'm along for the ride, keep us posted on how the Guzzi runs.
Following along. I particularly like your photos. You have a good eye, and your camera helps too. Glad to hear that Big Girl is behaving. Blondy had her first river crossing this week, and I continue to struggle with estar and ser, and I don't know if gringos were meant to get the difference. Take care bud.
My photos, Dave? You just keep pumpin out stuff like this.
But, on with the boring stuff.
Getting away from that skanky motel was a pleasure. BG behaved herself and it was a perfect ride on a sky blue day.
Still had many inlets to cross before I actually saw the sandy beaches.
Ended up at Surf City being reminded of the Beach Boys. ‘ Here I come.”
One of these big hotels at 40 a night.
There were schools of fishies in the waves, kinda cool.
And a sunset to knock Sockmonkey’s Socks off.
Headin out the next day I noticed Big Gal seems to have an Owl glued to her ass.
Hopefully it will keep the bad tailgaters away.
Down along to the Fort Fisher crossing and into South Carolina.
The $33 a night package was enough for me to book a few days at Myrtle Beach just so I could relax a while and read my book.
I had found out that Daytona was about to be flooded with the Harley Hordes just about when I’d be getting down that way so it seemed like a good time to stop. What were they callin it? Biketoberfest?
This is where I took the plunge (literally and enjoyed a bit of tropical ocean.
Not a lot I can say about Myrtle Beach, or perhaps any resort for that matter. I guess the biggest kick I get is just riding and observing. With the emphasis on riding. What I see here in M B is like Vegas without the gambling. Just a lot of fairly pricy restaurants and shops full of trinkets and cheap, made in China apparel. I guess that is what I will be in store for as I head down the coast but all I have to do is think of that nasty stuff that is settin in up north and I am sure I can grin and bear this.
Clouds would come in some mornings but burn off fairly quickly. Forecast called for thunderstorms Friday so I thought I’d hang till Saturday.
Then BG decided she didn’t like the way some of the boys had been messin with her and, luckily for me right in the hotel parkade, she stalled and read out the red triangle of death on her screen with ECU in big letters and an unplug icon.:huh I just got a quick electronic rattle when I tried to restart her and, as it was getting dark I put her to bed and proceeded to drink alcohol which I don’t usually do much.
Wild ideas were going thru my head. What if the ECU is wratched? Nearest dealer? 400 miles to Florida. Rent a truck? Drive her there? By the Gods, why me? Was the Big Gal warning me? She would almost stall after gearing down to a stop. But that big momentus flywheel kept her going.
Side cover off in the morning. See if it really disconnected.
And there she is. All apart. Bright and early. Soon as I took the side cover off I saw it. Ground connection was loose. I put a wrench to it and it would not tighten any tighter. I removed the bolt; saw that the hole was thru drilled and put it back in. It would not seat. Was wondering if Redline had left a spacer out. It was within 1/16th” of seating. I stold a washer from a body part and got it seated. Fired right up, problem solved. I did, however pull it off again and retry seating it without the washer which, this time it did. Go figure. Redline should have checked the ground for tightness but in all fairness I might have missed it myself.
Everything back together and will be blowing this Pop stand first thing. Florida’s coming.
Did she get washed out to sea in the next pic?
Doug, glad we got to meet up in Roanoke. I ended up working on Mark's bike much longer than planned but he really appreciated the heated gear the next morning when it was 36F as we left town. I strongly recommend a stop in Birmingham for the Barber Motorsports racecourse and motorcycle museum. Better plan for a full day at the museum, maybe even two. There was so much to see at the track that I saved the museum for the next trip. From your photos it is clear that you are enjoying the east coast. Thanks for sharing.
Did you see this about the plug caps ?
Enjoy the warmth, drove to Kelowna yesterday and encountered first snow and ice so I think we are done for the year here?
Sent ... Me.
Yep Jim. Have read about that before. Someone along the way had suggested looping a zap strap under the led to gently pull the cap off. I've been doing that and so far, no damage.