Alaska on a BMW K1600 GTL

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by judgebill, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    thursday was hard because the supervisor was nearly begging me to put in one more day (friday) of courier work. he then referred me to the owner.

    i was at the owner's office and i heard him begging drivers that already quit to please come back and help friday. from a monetary point of view, there was no sense at all to work friday. if work put me late, i was at that time facing a series of craigslist rides that would be both costly and unreliable. but more important than money, i wanted to spend friday with a friend.

    he flat out wouldn't give me friday off. i could feel him and his business needing my help friday.

    thursday night was spent making a lot of communications to arrange for CL rides.

    then... yesterday. i started extra early to try and get off work as soon as possible. i ended up riding about 12 hours straight. at one point i was at lb bmw and when i finally arrived with yeow, i slid down the side of the outside wall. i was a bit worried the chp officer there would question me about my exhaustion (because he might think it was drugs).

    everyone at lb bmw was nice to me. one noticed i looked really tired - which felt good, actually, to have a friend notice that. and another one let me borrow an article about sport bikes - i'm trying to study up on sport bikes and the s1000rr. (but if i'm not going to do courier work, i'm not really sure why i'd need it).

    throughout last night, my knuckles hurt so much i woke up from it. this morning, they were in so much pain.

    last night, i told myself that i'd never ride the motorcycle again. the hours as a courier burned me out - physically, emotionally, psychologically. it took incredible focus towards the last courier hours to pay attention to all the different kinds of traffic.

    i must have been so tired. i looked at the time on my laptop and couldn't believe how late i'd slept.

    remember i mentioned there were a variety of reasons i wanted to keep the thread lean? lb bmw was shocked that i put info about lojack on the internet.

    the installer said, "now, clif, don't tell anyone lojack's on your motorcycle."

    "I... i put it on the internet."

    "you what???!!"

    anyway, i registered bg's lojack this morning and it was pretty easy. i thought i'd get error messages etc., but actually, the registration went really smooth.

    i'm going to ride out now...

    i enjoyed the freedom to have time to pack, time to get ready, and the freedom to choose when i rode. i had time to finally clean my helmet. i had time to think, to contemplate where i wanted to go. this freedom feels really good.

    i met a bmw enthusiast in beverly hills. his name was something like michael or nathan netzel. anyway, he said he had some really bad experiences at hollywood. he bought two motorcycles from them. the second one had a flat tire and the dealership refused to give him a new tire. so he paid for the new tire and installation. he said since then, he'll only deal with lb bmw.

    there's a bmw dealership in SF downtown i like a lot. and then i went to one around SJ? -- i'll have to double check... but the service there was really bad. i wanted them to fix the key pairing problem to bg, and the service guy said, "you're only supposed to have one key, right?" he was implying that i had somehow "taken" a second set and that they didn't have to help me pair it. that was before the tour started.

    i'm going to go now. i'll try to upload some pics from my friend's house. yesterday, there was an incredible accident and a bmw car ended up in front of me sitting on top of a flower bed... or a raised brick platform. how did it get up there?

    i offered to help the driver, but he said he was ok.
  2. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    basically, i marvel how a night's of good sleep can change a person's mind.

    yesterday, i didn't even have to "decide" whether to ride or not again. i never wanted to ride again.

    and now, i'm excited to get on bg and see the world again.

    thursday after work, i drove my friend's car. before that, i hadn't driven for months - in part because i promised myself that i'd never drive again. i felt panic driving... i felt i couldn't see anything! i felt like i was driving a box!

    should i sell my car? ohhh... i don't know.
  3. SPX

    SPX Long timer Supporter

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    Regarding the flat tire, I'd need to hear the whole story, but if he bought the motorcycle, and then got a flat, I can't see why they would give him a new tire. It's certainly not the dealers fault that the rider/new owner got a flat tire. If you talk to enough people, you'll no doubt find someone not happy with pretty much every dealer out there.

    If you're referring to San Jose BMW above, you're talking bad about one of the most respected BMW motorcycle dealerships in the entire country. San Jose BMW has an excellent reputation, with really top notch, knowledgable employees who are extremely passionate about motorcycles. I've had extensive contact with the service and sales departments, as well as the owner, and I don't have one negative thing to say about them. On the contrary, I look forward to my next opportunity to do business with them, as I personally haven't ever been to a better BMW dealer. It's a shame that I am 450 miles south of them...
  4. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    I'm not sure if it was SJ BMW. It wasn't a stand alone building and the owner was trying to explain to me that they were really backed up and he even hired a couple extra mechanics.

    But I'm glad you posted your experience with them because I was only in there long enough to talk about the 2nd key not pairing.

    450 miles could be an opportunity too! it could be a 2 day, fun round trip!
  5. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    I LOVE IT!
    Thank you! :clap:clap:clap:clap
  6. Oldone

    Oldone One day at a time!

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  7. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    Thanks Gary. Do your kids also ride?
  8. livewire

    livewire Adventurer

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    Come on Cliff. Why did you trim / delete so much of your previous narrative?
  9. oldtouring B

    oldtouring B Been here awhile

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    How Clif's mind works over the past month--Here is my guess. He has decided that Bill will pitch the trip as a movie. In order to protect the storyline, it was necessary to remove certain material!

    A title might be" A strange way round"

    One thing for sure-Clif continues to amaze.
  10. judgebill

    judgebill Been here awhile

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    I anticipate returning to California in late October to join Clif and Cindy in more riding. Looking forward to it. Meanwhile I am reviewing the postings here and putting together a comprehensive Rr that includes photographs, videos and a narrative that flows a bit better than it shows here. A labor of love that will cover the trip up the Pacific Coast, through British Columbia, Yukon Territory, Alaska and back down through Yellowstone and Yosemite. We made a hell of a trip and certainly enjoyed every minute of it. And most of you traveled right alongside of us as we rode over highways and deserts and mountains. Your loyal reading has inspired Clif to continue his motorcycle adventures and are part of what contributed to his falling in love with motorcycling. We all know Clif won't retire from riding, it's in his blood, part of his DNA and now where he takes us next will be answered by whatever imaginative meanderings he composes. I, for one, am always anxious to see what Clif has to say about his life, the world of motorcycling and where he goes next. Looks from here (from this time of the year) that Alaska is definitely on the program for next summer. This time the goal will be Prudhoe Bay complete with new pictures, new stories and new adventures. Before then, however, there are other roads to ride and discoveries to be made. Where, when and how will be reported as they happen.
    Bill:rofl:clap:freaky
  11. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    First, i really appreciate that you noticed.

    Second, it could take some time before i can reveal that. it wasn't anything dramatic though, and it was for a combination of reasons.

    But talking about the present, i should be able to post pictures and descriptions of most topics / issues going on now. :D
  12. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    Yeah... you have collectively made comments that are often "on the mark," and i'm just unable to confirm that. this RR is also a history of how you people make "freakishly accurate" predictions about what's going on.

    So out of all the reasons that could be imagined for the editing - he's right - it's more along these lines.

    thank you
  13. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    Hi Bill,

    Thanks for the great news!

    In my last days of courier work, I gave myself the luxury of talking to many other riders and I found to my surprise that most are interested in the option of riding. So maybe we can have a big group to ride somewhere. Or, a lot of them really have come to read the RR. It's still taking time for me to understand the interest because I spent most of my life avoiding motorcycles and not thinking about them. It'll be fun to plan our next tour or day trip!
  14. horseiron1

    horseiron1 Been here awhile

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    Clif,

    Did you ever get your bike going?
  15. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    yes. saturday it showed another warning light, but not for long. it was yellow and had a ... like a screw looking thing on the right side, a box on the other attached.

    but that's just part of bg's personality.

    i'd like for her to be working fine - but if she doesn't, then i just consider her a funny bike that knows how to help me.

    i don't ride her much anymore, but she hasn't overheated for a couple days already.
  16. DWR302

    DWR302 Justan Nudderboomer

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    Am I not entertained? I am. What an apt post that was. I had to check my motivations. Am I a Roman wondering what the lions are going to do next? Are they even hungry? And cats do love to play with their next meal sometimes.

    I have time to kill as I am healing up from my first major "off" after many decades of riding, otherwise I would likely have quit this thread early on. I read thru pages of disbelief. It took pictures to bring me around. More than once I have thought of this thread as an amusing scam. Or a train wreck about to happen. It is hard to look away. So I guess I must admit, I too, like to visit the Colosseum.

    I have kids and grandkids so I can not help but want to help guide. How could I convince you that your love of riding would be enhanced if you had a bike that more matched your present skill and experience? Why ride a tall, heavy, high CG bike you fear dropping all the time? Why lust after the 1000RR with race bike ergonomics and performance WAY beyond your experience? That bike or a better one will be there when you are ready later on. There are many great bikes out there to choose from that don't have the down sides of the one you now have and the one you want.

    Motorcycling is a wonderful thing that you have recently discovered. I hope you can learn to give it the respect it deserves so you can enjoy it for many years. If you don't, it will take you out!
  17. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    thanks for reminding me to be careful.

    i think now that i don't plan to go back to being a courier, i'll be ok. the really mentally tough aspect of being a courier was that the hours could make you "insensitive" to the cars around you.

    my ideal bike is the s1000rr. but if my friends will do more tours, bg will still be the best bike. s1000rr was attractive only when i was doing courier work.

    the height of bg is good - and she hasn't tipped over for a really long time.

    i'm glad the photos made you a BELIEVER!
  18. AdventurePoser

    AdventurePoser Long timer

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    +1

    Steve in So Cal
  19. Stug

    Stug n00b

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    Hi Cliff and Bill

    I am a friend on Navin's. I just finished reading the RR. Very entertaining although it has struggled a bit towards the end.

    I might have missed it but a lot of the photobucket pics don't show and the icon says deleted or moved or similar. Unless it is just me I am surprised that I didn't see more comments about that.

    I have a F800ST and S1000RR which are both mentioned in this thread. Both great bikes and both beat my expectations. If I needed a tourer I would lean heavily towards the K1600.

    Navin and I rode to Oxnard last weekend and I remember being on a ride in Malibu up Stunt Rd that Bill was on a while back.

    Anyway - if you can get the pics back that would be good.

    Maybe we can all meet for a ride some weekend.
  20. ClifNotes

    ClifNotes Facebook Me!

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    i just drove my car for the first time today. yesterday, Tiff gave me a schedule for picking up her kids and i was supposed to leave the house around 2pm (in 15 minutes) to start the workday. i had worked for her before, but the economy has been terrible and she had to stop my employment because she ran out of money. (which gave me the unemployment i needed to tour with bill.) Then, I think their finances improved somewhat so she called me to start again.

    i made a strong and deep promise to never drive my car again. i loved riding and i promised to only keep transportation to riding. when i tried to charge the car's battery, the store said my battery was dead. i hadn't run my car for too long. i bought a new battery and installed it in the dark, last night. my roommate noticed one of my tires were nearly flat.

    when i saw my phone before heading back to the auto place to get more tire pressure, i could see many messages from Tiff. I called her and she said her husband didn't think they were financially ready to hire me. they sold one of their three cars recently and it seems he didn't prioritize the need for a driver / tutor / nanny that high. Tiff hinted an argument ensued over this. (the dad is more the kind of person that things college is a thing for nerds and not at all necessary for success in life, whereas Tiff has a strong desire to see her kids all go to Ivy Leagues).

    after my tires were inflated, i drove back and realized my tires were extremely out of alignment. this makes no sense whatsoever and i began to suspect that perhaps some people had tried to steal my car - so somehow in the process the alignment was ruined.

    now i've been in whittier again and there must be a lot of crime here because the police are in our neighborhood all the time. there are a lot of positive aspects to this. first, i like the police and i enjoy meeting them when they respond to emergencies here. second, as an asian i'm genetically predisposed to film everything, so i like filming the police activities. they've been very gracious and have never stopped me - but when there's a good likelihood i'll get shot, they ask me to back up a little so there's less chance i'll get shot.

    the negative part of this much crime is that a lot of things get stolen. the reason i had to take the battery to the auto store was that my new battery charger was stolen. i didn't realize i'd be in whittier again, but now that i'm here, i'm really glad bg has (shhhhhhh.... lojack).

    before, i used to hold my breath or come out to the window every time i heard a truck pass our house - i thought someone might have taken bg. now i don't have to worry because lojack works in the US (so i've learned from our experts).

    i'm a little disappointed that lojack doesn't work outside of the US - that was a big factor in my decision not to ride to uruguay. but bill also told me that he thinks he could be back in LA before i even get there. and i think spx said it could cost so much money to travel there.

    yesterday, bmw corporate left a very offensive message in my voicemail. some guy left a message saying he "investigated" the overheating and they concluded that 1) the overheating is "self induced" and that 2) it's because I don't know how to ride a motorcycle.

    i'm not sure what to do. maybe i'll just do nothing. i don't think i'll do the work anymore as a courier and currently, i haven't been riding bg at all. though maybe today i'll ride her to the park to exercise. the park is nearby and usually i go only when the temperature is low, so i think it's very unlikely to see any overheating. and without more documented cases of that, i don't think there's much i can do.