bwhip's phototastic two-wheeled adventures thread

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

  1. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Making the Most of My Trip to the Dealer

    My Aprilia Tuono Factory continues to be my all-time favorite bike, after about 16 months of ownership and 4000 miles of perma-grin. However, recently I was having an issue where a warning kept popping up on my dash: “URGENT SERVICE.” Not what you want to see when out on a ride. Each time I’d punch in the code and try to figure out what the problem was, but it never would tell me. I’d reset it, and then a couple of rides later, it was back again. Finally it got to the point where I couldn’t get it to reset, so I figured I’d better get it to the dealer for service.

    Only problem? My closest dealer is six hours away in Portland. I worried that I’d load it up in the truck and drive all that way, only to find that it was some little thing like a loose connector, or worse, that it was something major and I’d have to leave it there while parts were ordered and make a return trip. Oh well, that’s the price you pay for owning an exotic bike in Idaho I guess.

    I loaded up the bike Thursday night and got up early on Friday to make the drive. As I drove out of town, I’d had to stop for a photo of the beautiful, stormy skies overhead:

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    A little thunder and lightning, a little rain, but not too bad of a drive over to Portland. I hoped it would be a quick and easy service, because then I’d have a little time on Saturday morning (maybe even Friday afternoon!) for a ride on some of my favorite roads along the Columbia River Gorge near The Dalles.

    They hooked up my bike to the special Aprilia computer, and found that it did in fact have a problem – a throttle position sensor was bad and needed to be replaced. They happened to have one available, so they were able to fix it in about a half hour and send me on my way, which I really appreciated!

    I stopped at a motel in The Dalles, and unloaded the bike. It was super windy, probably gusting around 40 MPH, but it was pretty warm so I decided to go for a ride over the bridge into Washington, to explore some roads on that side of the river, which I hadn’t tried before (to the east).

    The Columbia River Gorge is spectacularly beautiful, especially when so green as it is this spring, and when it’s not raining! I had to stop several times along the way for photos.

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    East of The Dalles, it’s much more dry and prairie-like, compared to much more forest-y to the west and north.

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    It was fun, and the bike was incredible as always, but the wind absolutely kicked the crap out of me. Heading east wasn’t bad, as I was with the wind, but up on the ridge by the wind farms, on the 40 mile return trip, my face and neck were getting hammered by the headwind.

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    I had dinner at a brewpub in The Dalles, and slept well, anticipating a hopefully-less-windy ride on Saturday.

    The next morning it was cold and windy – but not as terribly windy as the previous afternoon. I set out hoping to make a nice loop in Washington of roads I’d ridden before – west along on the Gorge for 30 miles or so, and then north through Carson up the Wind River Road, and then west on Hwy 90 over to Cougar, then back across to the east over to Trout Lake, Glenwood and Klickitat – with some AMAZING twisty roads along the way.

    As I looked across the Gorge, I could see Mt Hood was absolutely blanketed with snow:
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    As usual, the Gorge was spectacular. The roads were pretty empty, as you can see, which is always nice!
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    As I climbed the hill toward Carson, my fingers were getting colder and colder on the chilly ride. I decided to stop for a quick espresso mostly to warm up my fingers!

    I stopped at one of my favorite spots north of Carson, in the deep, dark Gifford Pinchot forest for a couple of photos:
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    The climb up the mountain from there is incredibly fun, though my frozen fingers and the cold, somewhat damp roads kept my speed below my normal aggressive pace. The snow along the side of the road got deeper and deeper as I climbed.
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    When I got to the top and turned left on Curly Creek Road, I saw signs indicating that Hwy 90 and others in the area were closed due to snow. Although I was bummed that I’d have to turn around and reroute, my icy appendages weren’t disappointed in the least, and happy to head back down to the Gorge, which now seemed comparatively warm.

    I decided to head over to Hwy 142, and head up through Klickitat from the south instead. The sun was coming out, and I was finally starting to regain some feeling in my fingers, which is always nice when trying to operate clutch and brake levers. I kept seeing these interesting stores all over Oregon and Washington, the likes of which we don’t have in Idaho. This one had a sign that was a little less subtle than their competitors:
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    No, I just stopped for the photo, I swear.

    The road north toward Klickitat is awesome, and it just keeps getting better and better.
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    This section is a little bumpy, but so spectacular and fun.
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    I turned left on Glenwood Hwy, and couldn’t believe how majestic and beautiful the mountain was in the distance.
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    The descent on this road is utterly fantastic for motorcycling. It’s impossible to decide between stopping to really take in all the beauty of the surroundings and shoot some photos, or twist the throttle and test the grip of those tires around the corners. My recommendation? Make a few passes both directions and do it all!

    Just look at those curves ahead!
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    Even a panorama can’t do it justice.
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    After taking the shot above, I heard some other bikes coming up from the left, so quickly slowed my shutter speed to try to get a shot like this:
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    After spending a fair bit of time there, I decided it was probably time to head back to my truck in The Dalles and make the long drive home so I wouldn’t arrive too late. I was cruising along on Glenwood Hwy, not going particularly fast, when it happened. Oops. I guess maybe I was going a little faster than I thought. Dammit.
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    Every once in a while, the authorities are nice enough to just give a guy a warning to slow it down a bit. Unfortunately, this was NOT one of those times, so he gave me a nice little souvenir to take home from my visit to Washington. Oh well, Lord knows I have earned one or two of these over the years.

    On the way back down the hill toward Klickitat, I saw the incredible view of the valley, this amazing road, and the wildflowers in bloom, and had to stop for just one more pic.
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    Despite the ticket, I had a great time in Washington. First time riding these roads on the Aprilia, and it was just amazing. I’ll be back! Maybe I’ll move the radar detector mount from the Ducati to the Aprilia first, however…
    Uke, rroger, TheAdmiral and 13 others like this.
  2. motocopter

    motocopter Long timer

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    When I was passing through Idaho in late '15, I was handed one of those revenue generating tickets. Then, my Concours had Colorado registration. I believe officer friendly knew I would be in no position to contest the citation. And so it goes. Do you believe law enforcement agencies stick it to out-of-towners on a regular basis in the PNW?
  3. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    No way to know, as I haven't heard of Washingtonians or Oregonians or Idahoans getting warnings when out-of-staters don't. I've gotten two tickets for speeding on my bike in Washington, one in Idaho, and a warning in Oregon. I will say that in the remote areas where I generally ride in Oregon, I almost never see law enforcement presence.
  4. MUDHWY

    MUDHWY Featuring understanding emotions

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    How hard/easy is it for you to get those expensive bikes of yours into the bed of your 1/2 ton 4X4 pickup? I am not a fan of loading and unloading a big bike alone into a full size truck. :yikes
  5. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Not too bad, as long as I can find a berm or something to back up to with my ramp. At the hotel the other day, there wasn't a berm handy, but they were remodeling and I found some pallets that I was able to stack to create a step up to the tailgate. It also helps that my pickup has air suspension that I can lower a bit to help the load/unload process.
  6. Kebabmonster

    Kebabmonster Been here awhile

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    Just read the whole 9 pages in 1 sitting, and I want to thank you for all the stunning pics and great write-ups. You're a lucky guy to have all these great roads and awesome scenery fairly close.

    I'm a big Multistrada fan. Would like one as my next touring bike when I finally fancy a change from the KLV1000, though this won't be anytime soon. Wouldn't be a new one (finances dictate that), and at the minute I love everything about the KLV. I know most Multistrada owners would say their bike is probably 2 leagues ahead of the KLV, but at the minute I'm happy with what I've got. It does everything I want it to, and if I fancy a hoon about I've also got a 990 Superduke for the sub 200 mile blasts. Sorry if I missed it, but what year was the first Multi?
  7. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Thanks very much! So glad you enjoyed the posts about my adventures. I certainly do feel blessed to live in such an incredible region for our favorite activity! The first Multi is a 2010 I bought new in early 2011, and it was a magnificent bike for me. I wish you lived closer so you could buy it! :) https://www.cycletrader.com/listing...0+S+TOURING-121618423/?zmc=paa-active-listing
  8. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    Awesome shots bwhip, sucks about the road tax on the Klickitat :doh

    That ride is/was one of my favorites when I was riding street - such an amazing place to ride. BZ Corner is always a cool little stop and I like the Glenwood store too.

    Thanks for taking and sharing, hope you weren't dinged too badly by the cop in WA.
    bwhip62 likes this.
  9. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Let's Beat the Holiday Traffic!

    The Memorial Day holiday weekend is upon us. A beautiful time of year! Moderate spring temperatures, everything turning green, and long hours of daylight. Let’s hit the road and head for the hills!

    Nope, not me. Well, at least not on the actual three days of the holiday weekend. Any holiday weekend. Just too many people on the roads. Too many RVs. Too many knuckleheads. Too much law enforcement! :)
    I go on rides to escape from crowds. From traffic. From people. Nice, open roads, where I can really ride. Ride fast. And maybe stop for a few photos along the way.

    Sundays of a holiday weekend aren’t too bad, since most of the cars and trucks and RVs are driving on Saturday or Monday. Still, I try to avoid riding on holiday weekends. But I was really, really needing to go for a ride. Lots of long work hours and stress, ready for a nice, long ride. Multiple days would be great, but no time for that this month, anyway. But I saw a window of time, and nice weather on the Friday before the Memorial Day weekend, so I decided to go do some riding!

    My “road trackday” format seemed to be the best option for a one-day getaway. I’d get up early in the AM and drive 160 miles or so to central Oregon, to my bike launch point near Austin, OR. Then I’d ride on some of my absolute favorites in that part of the world – about 360 miles of incredibly fun roads with great variety.

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    I started on Up Middlefork Road, an old favorite I hadn’t ridden for a couple of years. Just as I remembered it was beautiful, tight and twisty. Weather was perfect, a little cool starting out, but lots of sunshine. And the road was absolutely empty.
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    After warming up on that fun road, I headed south on Hwy 395 to Long Creek, where I stopped for fuel, knowing it was a long way to Condon, my next gas opportunity. I rode west over the hill toward Kimberly. Another really fun, empty road with lots of great corners, and some beautiful views.
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    After rolling through Kimberly I picked up Hwy 19 toward Spray, and then turned north on an absolutely AWESOME road – Hwy 207 from Spray to Ruggs. Sooooooo great, especially from south to north, where the road flows up the hill just spectacularly. Like your own private racetrack. I absolutely love this road. I often have to stop at this one particular hairpin for a photo, though this is the first time I shot from this particular perspective, which I liked quite well.
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    Absolutely beautiful scenery, and an incredibly fun place to ride a motorcycle!

    From Ruggs I turned east on another one of my all-time favorites – Hwy 206, the Condon-Heppner Highway. For some reason Google Maps wouldn’t let me connect from Condon to Ruggs, but I had no trouble getting through. Not sure if it had been blocked before due to construction or whatever, but it was smooth sailing Friday. As you can see, the terrain changes from dense forest to barren desert in just a matter of a handful of miles.
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    We swear these roads must have been designed by motorcyclists. Fantastic.

    I stopped in Condon for fuel and lunch. Not a lot of food options there, but I found a pretty decent sandwich at the combination flower/card/sandwich shop. For real.

    After lunch I headed south down the canyon toward Fossil, and then west toward Clarno. This is another spectacular stretch of road that photos could never do justice. Between Fossil and Shaniko is pretty legendary in Oregon among motorcyclists, and it’s easy to see why. I find it flows especially well when traveling west to east.

    At Clarno there are some amazing rock formations that draw a lot of visitors in cars and on bikes.
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    Imagine mile after mile of twists and turns through scenic canyons like this, with hardly anyone on the road. Yes, it’s like that. Unreal.
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    At Clarno I turned around to begin the homestretch back to the east, and my truck. On the way to John Day the scenery and roads continue to be incredible. Cathedral Rock and Goose Rock were so beautiful I just had to stop for photos.
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    I made it back to the truck in Austin after 365 miles of twisty thrills, gorgeous weather and amazing scenery. Made it home around 9 PM. A long day for sure, 325 miles in the truck, and 365 on the bike. But totally worthy it. As I drove home I could see all the cars, trucks and RV’s headed for the mountains – just as I was leaving. Perfect! Just the way I planned it. And best of all – no speeding tickets!

    Once again I can’t express how grateful I am to live near such fantastic motorcycling opportunities. And grateful to have absolutely brilliant bikes on which to experience these roads.
    Uke, rroger, MotoVentures and 10 others like this.
  10. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer Supporter

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    And I'm grateful that you take the time to document that fantastic motorcycling. Someday when I have the time I'll head out that way and spend a few weeks riding that area:ricky:ricky:ricky
    bwhip62 likes this.
  11. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Thanks so much, it's my pleasure. You really should - it'd be worth a trip for sure!
  12. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    Seeing all these pics brings back awesome memories of ripping around out there - makes me want to buy another street bike...lol. Great shots and ride bwhip, envious of that loop you pulled off. The last few years we've done our annual trek to stay in Fossil I've hit the Morrow County OHV park off Hwy 207, not nearly as fun in a truck as it is on a bike.

    Wonder how much snow is still up on NF52 out of Ukiah toward Granite, one of my all-time favorite roads to ride. Still want to check out the Winom Frazier OHV park out that way...supposed to be really cool.

    Awesome pictures man!
    bwhip62 likes this.
  13. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Thanks very much! I would think the snow should be pretty well melted off of any roads by now, there was quite a bit less along Hwy 7 than when I was there a month ago.
  14. cgguy09

    cgguy09 Scientiæ Cedit Mare

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    Oh man, I need to give this thread a good read! I gotta find these roads!
    bwhip62 likes this.
  15. ORexpat

    ORexpat Oregon Expatriate

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    Come on down to the Chief Joseph Rally in John Day, weekend after Father's day. That's right in the heart of this country!
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  16. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    I was hoping I'd get some time for a ride this weekend, but between weather and home and work projects, I wasn't sure how much time there might be. I was working on a deck painting project this afternoon, when it began to rain. It only lasted about 20 minutes, but it certainly wasn't helpful for painting. Soon, the sun was back out and I started thinking about going for a ride. I knew the roads might still be a bit wet in spots, but it seemed to be drying out pretty quickly.

    I decided to grab the Tuono and go for a ride on one of my local favorites - the "Lowman Loop." It's a 150 mile loop from the Boise area, north on Hwy 21 past the Lucky Peak Reservoir, and then up over the mountain past Idaho City and over to Lowman. Then, back to the west to Garden Valley and Banks, and then south again to the Boise area on Hwy 55.

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    Weather was cool, but sunny. As I rode past Mores Creek, I just had to stop for a few photos:

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    The section of road south of Mores Creek Summit is absolutely fantastic, really fun to ride. My fingers were losing feeling because it was so cold, but it sure was fun!

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    As usual, the Tuono was absolutely sublime. This bike is so brilliant. The sound is so glorious! The power is ridiculous. Corners like it's on rails. And comfortable! I just couldn't love it more.

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    I began the descent toward Lowman, my fingers ready to thaw out in the warmer air of the valley below. One more stop for a photo, showing the spectacular view from the top, including the road I was about to descend.

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    Other than frozen fingers, it was an absolutely great ride. Hardly any cars, only one deer, and no speeding tickets!
  17. Separate Sky

    Separate Sky n00b

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    I can't believe how easy it is to access incredible roads right out your back door. That looks like a great loop! I actually just visited Boise over Memorial Day and did the drive on 21 (on Sunday) but continued through Lowman to Stanley. You've also documented that ride earlier in this thread, but that road is absolutely awesome and I was doing it in a giant Chevy Malibu rental car, not exactly what comes to mind when you think of nimble. I can't wait to come back on a motorcycle! Unfortunately I think a portion of the road has since washed out between Lowman and Stanley.
  18. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    We're blessed for sure! Part of that road to Stanley did get washed out recently, but last I heard it was open.
  19. bwhip62

    bwhip62 Been here awhile

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    Having owned my 2016 Factory Tuono for about a year and a half now, I've always known how great it could potentially be on the track. I've done some fairly dumb things on the street with her - it's just so damn easy to go fast! I know that to really feel the full potential of these bikes, the track is the only place to be. Still, I've been a little hesitant, because this is my baby, and I was a little concerned about the risk.

    I finally got over the hesitation, and decided to take her to an incredible event I've gone to nearly every year since 2006. A three-day private track event at Grattan Raceway in Michigan, held at the end of June each year. I did some basic track prep on the bike, including mounting a new set of SuperCorsas, and off we went. I had my regular track bike there as well - a 2013 Triumph Daytona 675R. At first it was a little weird switching between the two - mostly because the Triumph has a GP shift pattern with quickshifter, and of course the riding position on the Tuono is much more upright and comfortable! But it didn't take long (or too many failed wrong-way shifts) to settle in to a pattern.

    The Tuono was just ridiculous. 160 MPH on the straight was pretty fun [​IMG] (despite lack of much of a windscreen meaning the wind was trying to peel my face off), and it cornered incredibly well too. The suspension was fantastic too, with perfect grip and tire wear through all three days of riding. After the first day I decided to turn off the wheelie control and have a little fun with that too. The best way I could describe the experience was just FUN, and EASY. I let several trusted friends take a spin on the track and every single one of them came back with the same huge grin on their face. We all agreed that it's crazy that these aren't just flying off the showroom floor, because they are just that great.

    My great friend and excellent photographer Terry Zorich was there, and captured some really cool shots of me over the three days, for which I'm really grateful!
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    And a few on the Triumph:

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    It was a fantastic, though too-short vacation! Just what I needed.

    Have I mentioned that I really love motorcycles?
    Uke, Doug Fremder, Meriwether and 3 others like this.
  20. MUDHWY

    MUDHWY Featuring understanding emotions

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    Cool track day Brian and, as usual, amazing photography always seems to be the result when you go out and play.

    Not to derail your newest foray but coming back to your fairly recent WA trip...I was just in the same neck of the woods and saw this exact same LEO out patrolling the Glenwood Hwy like there was no tomorrow. Guy even did a u-turn and followed me for several miles but I was on my best behavior at that point so no $$ was to be had from me that day. It would seem he has an affinity for ticketing m/c's. Probably his bread and butter up there. Glad I saw him before he saw me! Your previous post was in my head as I was descending that section so that didn't hurt. Cheers!

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    Uke and bwhip62 like this.