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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by bwhip62, Mar 18, 2015.
That makes me very happy, thanks!
Didn't have much time to ride over the past weekend, and we had a bit of rain Sunday AM, but I did take a brief spin on the Hyper, up the hill above Boise (Bogus Basin Road, which leads to our local ski resort) on Saturday afternoon. Brought the drone along to try an experiment with getting some "action selfies."
On Sunday afternoon I did about an hour ride on the Aprilia. I remembered a cool little back alley spot in Emmett that I knew would provide a nice backdrop for a quick iPhone shot:
These bikes make me so happy. In very different ways, but both just so exceptionally fun. I love this time of year, and am grateful to see the rules on sheltering-in-place loosening up a bit.
Bwhip62, first, that's a great pic of your Aprilia in the alley! Second, thank you for these recent reports. I have a bike in Seattle that needs to be back in North Carolina and I was hesitant to book a flight to go get 'er. My thought was to wander around for a month or so on the way back home and your mention of the hotels being open in your area prompted a call to my travel agent and book a flight. Thank you, sir.
That's great news! Have a fun and safe trip.
Perhaps a bit of a reality check is needed? Bwhip said pretty clearly that he travelled in Idaho only because of the restrictions. A flight from North Carolina to Seattle and then finding accommodations back across that span is hardly similar travel. Have you looked into the state-by-state restrictions you'd encounter on a trip like that? I can't imagine you wouldn't run into all kinds of obstacles, not the least of which is restricted travel into a state of non-residence. I'd also seriously question the wisdom of commercial air travel right now. Perfect petri-dish environment.
Just my $.02. Please be safe.
Thank you for reaching out. I should have stated that I "dropped a hook in the water" on the Pacific Northwest forum and promptly received several replies from inmates in Washington & Oregon. Hotels and restaurants are currently opening in Oregon/Washington (confirmed by calls to motels/hotels I made yesterday). Food is available via carry-out in Washington and restaurants are opening in Oregon now. Social distancing applies. I also called a few hotels in Montana and they're open. Idaho seems to be good as I confirmed with hotels in Orofino and Sandpoint. The only "iffy" states right now are Wyoming and Kansas and I'll make inquiries there today. Both are easily dodged, though, if travel restrictions for non-residents are still in place. Also, I received an e-mail from a California riding bud and he's currently in Arkansas. He said he's had no unforeseen along the way and is continuing his trip to Western North Carolina before riding back.
I, too, have concerns about air travel. I looked into train travel and quickly dismissed that. I've lived through the polio era, a year in combat in Vietnam, eight family reunions and successfully raised teen-age daughters. I'll take every precaution with masks, gloves, disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer.
Thank you for your concern. I appreciate that.
With some other vacation events being postponed or cancelled due to current events, I decided it was time to at least take a couple of days off and do a long touring ride. A long weekend – Friday through Monday. I planned a route that would take me way up north – just a few miles from Canada, in Montana and Idaho. Nearly 1500 miles over four days and three nights. Forecast looked decent, cool mornings, nice afternoons, with supposedly just the chance of a few thundershowers here and there.
Friday I rode up from home through Stanley, Idaho, across the border up into Montana, and spent the night in Missoula.
The views of the Sawtooth Mountains in Stanley always make me happy.
Next I rode one of my favorite roads in Idaho – along the Salmon River between Stanley and Challis.
Next was the beautiful stretch through the rocky canyons between Challis and Salmon.
Next I climbed the mountain north of Salmon, and the beautiful, twisty section through the pines along the border between Idaho and Montana.
Spent the night in Missoula, then Saturday morning headed north past Flathead Lake.
It was super gray and kind of foggy, so didn’t bother with photos there – though it’s really a beautiful place!
I did shoot some photos before it started raining as I went by some smaller lakes on the way to Libby.
The skies darkened the further I went
Not long after the rain started as I got closer to Libby. My primary destination for the day was Lake Koocanusa. I sure hoped it would clear up! I took a few photos in the rain when I got there, figuring it would be better than nothing, should it not clear up. I even flew the drone in the light rain, which probably wasn’t too smart. Thankfully it didn’t short out and crash.
The lake is very narrow and very long – around 50 miles of riding as I went north on the adjacent road on the east side. Finally the rain let up and it became a lot better for photos!
About 10 years ago was my first-ever multi-day touring ride, with my buddies Tommy, Taylor and Rob. One of the most memorable places we went to was Lake Koocanusa. I was hooked on this whole moto-touring thing! Since then between the two Multistradas, I’ve done over 50,000 miles of touring, which has been so completely wonderful!
A few more shots from there:
Next I crossed the bridge to the west, and took the very remote forest road through Yaak and back across the Idaho border. At this point I was just a few miles from the Canadian border.
I cleaned my filthy bike once I got to Bonners Ferry, Idaho, where I spent Saturday night. I knew there might be some showers during the night, but I couldn’t sleep knowing it was that disgusting. When I woke up Sunday morning, it was dry! I put on my gear, packed up to leave, and saw that it was raining. Grrrrr. Oh well. Forecast said it would clear up in just an hour or two. Didn’t quite turn out that way.
Sunday’s route would take me back across to the south, crossing the border again back into Montana, where I really like their 70 MPH speed limits most everywhere!
I rode past Lake Pend Oreille (pronounced Ponderay), and found that although it was gray and wet and dreary, at least the conditions led to some dramatic skies for photos.
Not sure why, but I had to take a photo of this weird spot:
It would stop raining briefly, get my hopes up, then start again. Thank goodness for GoreTex gear.
Not really much of a day for photos due to all the rain. Still a fun ride. Mostly I hurried to get back to the hotel in Missoula, knowing that we were going to have a family Father’s Day Zoom chat with Mrs Whip and me and all three of the kids. That was the highlight of the day for sure!
Nice and sunny the rest of the afternoon and evening there, but that didn’t do me a lot of good! Early in the evening I rode the bike about three blocks up the street where I’d seen a self-serve car wash, so I could give her a proper bath. I’d been having issues with the bike surging a bunch while at low RPMs (3500 or so) rolling through small towns at 35 MPH or so. I’ve got the RapidBike module on there to improve that issue, which it’s always done really well, so I couldn’t figure out why it was having this problem. As I rode to the car wash (with no helmet), I could hear this weird clapping sound coming from down around the rear wheel. It looked like my chain had become very loose, and this was causing it to slap the slider on the underside of the swingarm. Not good, especially with nearly 400 miles to go to get back home. And of course, with a Ducati single-sided swingarm, you need the special tool to adjust the tension, which I have in my toolbox at home. *
Monday AM I got up early to get on the road. Bright and sunny. As I went up into the mountains to head down favorite “Lolo Pass”, it got COLD! Down to the high 30’s. I didn’t bring any heated gear, but thankfully at least the heated grips helped out some. Of course, I had to stop at the famous sign at the top.
The surging was getting worse and worse, and I was starting to stress out about whether I could get safely home. I used the clutch a lot to keep things smooth when I had to roll through small towns and go slower speeds. It wasn’t noticeable when I was going 80 or so (most of the time), but really bad at maintenance or decel throttle conditions.
Thankfully no one was on Lolo Pass on Monday AM, so it was a great ride. I stopped for just a couple of photos.
At the bottom of the 99 miles, when I reached the little town of Kooskia, I stopped at a little auto parts store there, to buy some tools to try to adjust the chain tension. 10 mil allen wrench, ratchet, screwdriver, and hammer (!). I figured I’d loosen the bolts for the concentric hub and try to tap it to adjust, kind of like a preload ring on a shock. Cost me 60 bucks, but I figured it’d be better than having a failure and getting stuck. *
Unfortunately, I couldn’t get the ring to budge the correct direction, just a little in the wrong one! At least I was able to tighten the bolts (one of them was a tiny bit loose), to hopefully insure that it wouldn’t get worse. For the remaining couple hundred miles I was very gingerly with use of throttle and clutch to keep things as smooth as possible and reduce the lashing that was going on down there.
Finally made it home!
Chain was ridiculously loose, but we survived.
Really grateful for a fun trip, despite the rain and a little bit of stress in the home stretch! That’s the longest trip I’ve done in quite a while, and it was a great Father’s Day weekend getaway. Really looking forward to a great trip with some fellow addicts late next month – when I’ll have a new chain.
* [Edit: Okay, so I’m officially an idiot. A few days after the trip I discovered that, although there isn’t much in the minimalist underseat toolkit on a Multistrada - two of the three tools it does have, include a 10mm Allen wrench and a chain adjuster tool. What a dope.]
Beautiful...as usual. Close to home for me for much of this ride, Brian. It's well known up here that Libby, MT has a funny way of attracting foul weather like a magnet. It can be sunny and warm all around the area but get into that valley and it is often cloudy and/or raining. Weird weather pattern that is fairly consistent.
We were riding up through the CDA River basin north of Wallace, ID on the days you were rolling through Noxon/Sandpoint/Bonners. Maybe it was your sweet Akra exhaust note that I heard at one point while out there?
Next time you come this far north give a heads-up and we can show you around and share some s(miles)!
Glad you made it home safe with that loose chain. I've been on shafties for so long now I forget that as good as modern chains are they do require some maintenance.
Fantastic as always. That little stretch between Stanley and Challis is one of my favorites too, perfectly engineered corners.
It's very time consuming to stop so often and take images, run a drone, etc.... thanks for taking us along.
Thanks so much! I find that it's really difficult to pass something so beautiful and not stop to take a photo or fly the drone. I hate having regrets later on in the ride, when I think back to a spot where I wish I'd stopped.
Any road construction along the posted routes? It's that time of year.
I for one would greatly regret it if you didn't stop at those spots and take all of those beautiful pics!
The only section with it was on Hwy 12 (Lolo Pass) at the highest elevation area, not too far from Lolo. Had to wait about 10 minutes for a Pilot Car, as it was one lane only. There was some going on near Lowman, Idaho as well, but no delays.
Will they ever have that section done? I can recall the same (down to one lane, pilot car) years ago right there.
I also have a selfie in front of that sign (99miles). Not too long after that I killed a whitetail and she totaled my 850R and my riding gear. I hitch hiked back to a cluster of cabins on the river and rented one for the night. They had a little restaurant and I ordered the biggest steak on the menu to celebrate my good fortune of walking away from that catastrophe.
Thanks for the memories!
Wow! So glad you came out of that okay, and celebrated in style!
Full armor head to toe. Destroyed about $1700 in protective gear and walked away a bit sore but without a scratch. Good gear is waaaaaaaaaaay cheaper than the alternative.
Ditto. I hit one of the giant idiot forest goats on my Magna some years back...check the link in my sig. Glad you came thru on the good side
Great thread. Great pics.