bwhip's phototastic two-wheeled adventures thread

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by bwhip62, Mar 18, 2015.

  1. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Excellent sent of pics and write-up @bwhip62! Seeing these shots make me miss doing track days and especially all the fun we had while instructing for PSSR. There's nothing like ripping around the track, exploring the limits of your skill and the bike in a safe environment. Great to see you with a knee on the deck and such good form, I bet hauling arse on that RSVR was something else.

    Apologies if I've asked and you've answered, but have you been to the Ridge before (Shelton, WA - west of Olympia)? That priller is a perfect beast for the Ridge; nice long straight followed by lots of elevation change and good mix of tight stuff.

    Great shots man, I hope to get back into track days down the road.
  2. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Thanks very much! Haven't yet been to the Ridge, but it looks incredible, and I hope to get there before too long. Done PIR many years ago, ORP a few years back, and the dump that was Spokane over 10 years ago. That's it for my PNW track experience.
  3. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    With the other trips I've been fortunate enough to do this year, I really thought there was no way I could squeeze in another. I thought maybe, just maybe, I could do one more long weekend of motorcycle touring. I started planning a route - but soon figured out that a route I'd want to do with new, interesting and photogenic locations (and the probability of decent weather) would require me to go a little further - like into northern California. I'm sure it would be fun, but I was reluctant to take that much time away from my work when we're so busy.

    My Canadian buddies had been strongly encouraging me to come along with them on their big trip to Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama in October. I'd pretty much ruled out that possibility, but the more I thought about it, I knew I'd have an amazing time with those guys, and it would also be a quicker trip than the one I was thinking about for touring. So, rather spontaneously, I decided to go for it! They were as surprised as me when I told them I'd see them there!

    Of course, the incredible friend who makes all of this possible is Etienne. Not only does he store my bike at his place near Quebec (and even do some maintenance on it!), he brings it along with his on long drives to different tracks, enabling me to just fly in and ride with him and our other great friends. I have no words to express how grateful I am for his kindness and generosity.

    My flight got in early enough on Friday, that I was able to visit the mind-blowing Museum at Barber. I'd heard so much about it, but the one time I visited the track in the past (two years ago), there wasn't time to go. I was like a kid in a giant toy store! It was overwhelming, and completely incredible. The view when you first walk in looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    They have so many amazing bikes from over the years - old, new, and everything in between. I had to snap a few shots:

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    The Ducati Desmosedici still is probably my favorite. I'd just love to own one. What a sexy beast.

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    Outside the back of the museum there is a path which leads to a couple of bridges which go right over the track. They even have glass floor sections so you can look directly down onto the track. Wow!

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    Lots of quirky stuff around the track, like statues of insects and Bigfoot and more. For some reason this lady hangs below one of the bridges over the track (!).

    [​IMG]

    Later Friday my friends arrived with RVs and trailers, and we got all set up in the paddock, ready for three days of awesomeness on the most fun track in the USA.

    When I drove into the country club - like setting on Saturday morning, I had to snap a photo of the beauty of the place, with the skies which always seem to be dramatic and photo-worthy there.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Now it was time to ride! The track is so fun and interesting. Tight, twisty, with lots of passing options and elevation changes. The kind of track you could just ride and ride and discover new lines, working on continuous improvement of lap times - always with a huge smile on your face.

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    I look kind of big for modern sportbikes. Mostly because I'm kind of big for modern sportbikes.

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    You've got to have a lot of trust to ride with someone else like this - and we do!

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    The group of people I was with are all friends from quite a few years of involvement with the motorcycleaddicts.org website and Facebook page. A really special group of people!

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    A dozen of us were riding out there, along with several spouses and other friends who stopped by to hang out with us. Of course, the Canadians really know how to do the trackday thing right, with lots of great food at every meal. We watched World Superbike races together at night in the paddock, and had a lot of great laughs.

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    My feet are so big that I wind up dragging my toes in the corners more than I'd like. :)

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    Etienne and I have a great time whenever we ride together - track or street.

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    I had so much fun over the three days, I can't even believe it. Etienne says that his goal is always to have 50% of the fun on the track, and 50% of the fun in the paddock. One of our friends perfectly summed it up when he said, "I think you guys have it more like 75%-75%!" Yep, he nailed it.

    I'd encourage anyone who loves motorcycles to visit Barber - especially to tour that museum. And it'd be hard for me to imagine a more fun track to ride. Can't believe how fortunate I am to have had this experience - and especially to have such truly awesome friends. So grateful!

    [​IMG]
  4. Zubb

    Zubb he went that-a-way...

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    Looks like a complete win all the way around. Thanks for sharing your story and the great pics!
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  5. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer Supporter

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    You are very lucky to have a friend like Etienne. It's pretty awesome how you were able to do this trip to Barber. BTW, I live less than two hours from Barber. We also have some pretty good riding around here and can ride year round although it gets a little cold for longer rides in the winter months. If you get the chance to do some street riding in the east, go for it.
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  6. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    No question! He's the best for sure.

    Our weather here has been unbelievably nice over the past week or two, and looks to continue just a little bit longer. Although I had to work most of the weekend, I did manage to sneak out Saturday afternoon for a little ride - glorious!

    [​IMG]
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  7. MUDHWY

    MUDHWY Paddle Shifter

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    Very cool Brian (as always from you.) I also snuck out last night but up in the north part of our great state of ID. Hayden Lake loop.

    20181022_160321_2-02.jpeg
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  8. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Outstanding @bwhip62! I'm envious of ripping around Barber, that's one of the tracks I've always wanted to ride. Great shots and getting out there to experience track days with a good group of friends is second-to-none.

    Good on you for making it happen, life's far too short to skip opportunities if you can make it work :thumb :thumb
  9. Zubb

    Zubb he went that-a-way...

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    I'll be more than happy to store this beast over the winter here in San Diego. But you have to leave the key with me in case I have to move it.


    .... just sayin'
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  10. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Very thoughtful of you! I could even come visit a couple of our kids down there while I'm at it. :)
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  11. Ozark08

    Ozark08 Been here awhile

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    I just read this start to finish. WOW. I always miss out on the amazing pictures cause I can't bring myself to stop riding and get off the bike. You may have inspired me though. I may also be job-hunting in the PNW now as well... :)
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  12. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Thanks! It's always a challenge for sure. But it also has the additional benefit of giving me breaks along the way, making very long rides seem quite short.
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  13. Smaxed

    Smaxed n00b

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    Thanks, bwhip, for a fantastic thread. The pics are great, and the maps are invaluable. I'm moving to the Eugene area in June and can't wait to sample some of these roads.
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  14. Zubb

    Zubb he went that-a-way...

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    Can you remind me where that road is?
  15. BobcatSig

    BobcatSig Single Track Beater

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    Hey, I recognize a few people in these pictures. :D
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  16. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    This is on Hwy 21, about 15 miles north of Idaho City.
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  17. Zubb

    Zubb he went that-a-way...

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    Thank you. I went through there a couple years ago taking the scenic route from Boise to Hot Springs MT.

    There's nothing quite like Idaho.
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  18. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Man, it's been a long winter! I've been dying to go for a real ride. Sure, rides of an hour or so near my house in the cold have been okay to get me by, but I mean a REAL ride. One where I actually go somewhere, spend the night, and ride hundreds of miles! Between being super busy at work, and the weather being absolute crap every weekend for months - here or anywhere else I might consider riding (including northern California!), it just hasn't been possible.

    Finally this past Friday/Saturday I saw a small window of opportunity. Forecast was fair - cool with some showers. But at this point I didn't even care about getting wet. I just needed to GO.

    Friday afternoon I left work early, around 1:30 or so. I plotted a route that would take me on some of my close-by favorites, into eastern Oregon. Across the Snake River along the border between Idaho and Oregon, over to Baker City and then along a twisty route over the hill to La Grande, where I'd spend Friday night. Then, Saturday morning I'd take a twisty route from La Grande along the Grande Ronde and John Day Rivers through John Day, back eastward to Idaho and home. Around 600 miles total, getting me home around 3:30 Saturday afternoon.

    It felt SO GREAT to get out and ride, despite getting rained on a fair bit Friday afternoon. I love this view of Brownlee Reservoir, and the dramatic clouds don't hurt the photos any!

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    Weather was mostly pretty cold, windy and wet. I got rained on a lot! Way more than I expected.

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    A few times I considered turning around and heading home, especially when the temperature dropped to 37 [​IMG] and I worried it might start snowing. Thankfully that didn’t happen, just cold rain and wet roads. About 40% of the time I was on nice, dry roads with temps up to 60, which was fantastic. Heck, even when it was cold and wet I was having a blast.

    [​IMG]

    Saturday morning started out quite cold (around 37) and dropped from there as I climbed in elevation, all the way down to 32 for a while. Thankfully I've got heated gear so it wasn't too bad, just constantly watching for icy patches on the roads. As the day went along things warmed up to around 60, so it was pretty darn nice - and dry all day! The rivers were raging - as full as I've ever seen with lots of flooding going on. Thankfully the roads were all okay and not too dirty.

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    The bike was flawless as always, so comfortable, fast and fun. Best part was no tickets.

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    I love riding motorcycles. So glad the season is here.
  19. Fireman1000

    Fireman1000 Long timer

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    What highway were the first four pictures taken on?
  20. Project Mayhem

    Project Mayhem Moto Aficionado Supporter

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    I couldn't agree more. :super
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