Clunking my CX Cross Country

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by jlevers, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. SOLOKLR

    SOLOKLR Back to work

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2006
    Oddometer:
    675
    Location:
    Green Valley, AZ
    Great report, I've enjoyed following along. Hats off to you and all the guys that have stepped up to help you along. Hell in about 30 years you'll be helping some kid fix his bike and recounting the adventures you're having. Thanks again for taking the time to keep this updated.
    jlevers likes this.
  2. oldtouring B

    oldtouring B Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2009
    Oddometer:
    974
    Location:
    Al Ba Jerky. NM
    How is your virtually new bike handling?
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  3. mrbreeze

    mrbreeze I keep blowing down the road Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    13,272
    Location:
    Tennessee
    Larry for President!
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  4. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    So, so much better, although I just went down the bumpiest road I've ever been on for like 50 miles, so I hope I didn't screw anything up...Mattole road on the lost coast.
    Foot dragger likes this.
  5. oldtouring B

    oldtouring B Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2009
    Oddometer:
    974
    Location:
    Al Ba Jerky. NM
    That lost coast road is one of those where a friend says" your going to love it" and then you have 2 loose teeth when you reach the end.. Once is enough for me..

    Rumor has it that the head of Scientology who owns the big house on the left insists that the road be that shitty to keep the riff raff out! Works for me..
    jlevers likes this.
  6. ponytl

    ponytl even my new bike is old

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2017
    Oddometer:
    443
    Location:
    memphis
    hell yes because he floats above it.........
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  7. waylongway

    waylongway madmax Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    4,137
    Location:
    NorCal
    One of my Favorites.....:raabia

    If you like that try Alderpoint Rd.....:p3rry
    jlevers likes this.
  8. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Ok, my tent got friggin soaked last night...if anyone has a roof I can make use of tonight in Southwest Oregon, it would much appreciated. I have a place to stay in Waldport, but I don't know if I'll make it that far today.
  9. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Hey guys, some of you may know that I've also been posting this report on the CX500 forum. Well, Murray (the guy on the east coast who helped me a ton) set up a "Pizza Fund" for Larry, to give people the opportunity to help me repay Larry. FWIW, I didn't even know this was happening until today when I looked on the forum...If anyone else wants to get Larry some pizza (or beer, or whatever he wants), I would greatly appreciate it. Here's the link: http://cx500forum.com/forum/general-discussion/88337-larry.html

    To be clear, none of this goes to me, it all goes to Larry.
  10. Michhub

    Michhub Major Medical Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Oddometer:
    4,272
    Location:
    San Tan Valley
    I was a bit shocked at how much was 'donated to the cause'...I bought Larry some pizza :thumb
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  11. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Well, I'm going to make it to Waldport... I have 35 miles to go. But holy crap is it cold, and I can't see anything. I'm not a huge complainer, but this blows
    Gham likes this.
  12. everready

    everready Stuck in Ohio....Ugh!!!

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2013
    Oddometer:
    3,426
    Location:
    Macedonia, Ohio
    The Hoh river valley in Olympic is supposed to be very nice.

    Years ago I used to put an open magazine across my chest under my T shirt. It really helped block the wind and kept my core warm(er). I've also used rubber gloves under my riding gloves. Stop at a Subway and ask for some of the ones they use to make sandwiches.
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  13. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Day 30


    After the bike-fixing extravaganza of the past two days, Larry and I thought it was time I go for a test ride. I got gas and switched the bike off reserve, then went about 200 yards, and the bike died. Hey Larry! I thought these carbs were supposed to be awesome! Oh, wait, slow down brain, it was working on reserve...probably just the petcock. I rode back to Larry’s on reserve, and while we were taking off the tank, I sagely observed, “you know, it always looks like it’s raining on one of my saddlebags whenever I ride…” :doh

    [​IMG]

    See the little spots?


    Larry looked at the right side of my bike, saw my master cylinder (for those reading this who don’t know what that is, it’s basically where the brake fluid goes) dripping, and gave me a look somewhere between amusement and despair. Off came my master cylinder…

    [​IMG]

    Turns out the inside of it was corroded, so Larry hunted around for a replacement. Thirty minutes later, I had a fully rebuilt master cylinder! Larry to the rescue, yet again.

    Ok, test ride take two. This time, everything went great. While I was gone, Larry whipped up a beautiful radiator guard, since I didn’t have one. Despite most of my bike looking like it’s been powerwashed with dirt instead of water, he couldn’t resist making the guard look super nice :lol3

    [​IMG]

    I packed up my stuff, took some final pictures, and headed out.

    [​IMG]

    Larry, you’re the man. Thanks for letting a random grimy teenager stay at your house for a few days, and fixing lots of things that I had no idea were even wrong. It’s like a new bike :clap if I end up riding back home next year, I’ll see you then for a quick (hah, yeah right) tuneup.

    Because of the master cylinder shenanigans, I didn’t end up leaving until almost 4. I struck out for the coast.
    As far as pure fun goes, the roads I was on for the rest of the day were probably the best of the trip. A Mercedes coupe and I got in a little friendly competition on Route 128 :ricky :ricky ...whoever that was, they could drive.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Route 29 was probably the most fun road I’ve been on, except for maybe Route 120 east of Yosemite. It was super duper twisty, but built in such a way that it didn’t feel at all like you’d fly off the edge if you made one little mistake. No pics, cus :ricky :ricky

    I learned that a somewhat marginal rear tire + a much stronger rear brake than I’m used to = very easily locking up the rear brake...whoops, live and learn.

    The campsite I was aiming for was one I’d seen on freecampsites.net. It looked like I could go north off of Route 175 on some back roads and get to it...well, I got to Route 175, and the back roads I’d seen on Google Maps were nowhere to be found. It was dark, so I just camped in a little pulloff. The best laid plans…

    --------------------
    Start: Sacramento, CA
    End: Hopland, CA
    Mileage: 140 miles
  14. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Day 31


    Wow, it’s been a full month since I left! That’s pretty insane. Exactly one month after leaving Massachusetts, I got to the Pacific Ocean.

    I left my campsite (I promise all that trash wasn’t from me :lol3) and made my way towards Route 1.

    [​IMG]

    At least it was right next to some twisties :ricky :raindance

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I must have passed approximately 1 gazillion bottles of wine worth of grapes...if anyone wants some wine, hit me up (looking at you, Mom) :beer

    [​IMG]

    As I got really close to the ocean, it got super duper foggy. We’re talking pea soup.

    [​IMG]

    This was taken literally 100 feet from the ocean:

    [​IMG]

    The road finally rose above the fog, and I was greeted with one of the most bizarre sights I’ve ever seen. The fog was completely covering the ocean, and it looked like I was driving on mountains that were floating on top of an endless cloud. It sorta looked like the view from a plane.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Seriously, that may be the weirdest but coolest thing I’ve ever seen.

    I took off on some little back roads, which were super cool and windy. How many times have you seen a warning about an 18% grade??

    [​IMG]

    Eventually, the fog cleared and I got to see the Pacific for the first time (on this trip). Can’t get any west-er than this! Hell yeah, country crossing complete! I stopped at a little cove for lunch.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Route 1 was wicked fun (yeah California, check that east coast slang out) for pretty much the whole way from Jenner to Leggett.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    The last 20 miles were especially fun -- pretty much nonstop curves. It was also a LOT colder than I’d expected. I was wearing most of my layers to stay warm.

    When I hit 101, I stopped in Leggett to see the drive-thru tree. I was a little confused when there was no window where they took my order...I really wanted a milkshake and fries. Oh well, I guess a 300+ foot tree will have to do :shrug :lol3

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    I continued up 101, and ended just south of the Avenue of the Giants, where I slept right below a monster redwood. Good stuff.

    ---------------
    Start: Hopland, CA
    End: Benbow, CA
    Mileage: 255 miles
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  15. zundappuk

    zundappuk Watch out chaps its a Focke!

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2011
    Oddometer:
    883
    Location:
    On the Siegfried Line in the German Eifel
    Super ride report, love the pictures and the help you are getting. I have a soft spot for the CX500, I bought one as my first new bike in 1980. Sold it too soon to jump on a CB900 (Bol D'or).

    BTW, did you notice the trees are watching you?
    upload_2017-9-21_21-44-33.png
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  16. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Day 32


    [​IMG]


    The day started off with the Avenue of the Giants. Well, they pretty much hit the nail on the head with the name…

    [​IMG]

    Jesse for scale:

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Someone suggested in my route planning thread that I should take Mattole Road along the Lost Coast. Sounds good to me!

    Lemme tell ya, the sure was great, but it was NOT worth rupturing the discs in my back or blowing out my fork seals for 50 miles to see it. (Just to be clear, neither of those actually happened, but it was close…) It was far and away the bumpiest road I’ve ever been on, and I’m from New England, so I’m no stranger to potholes. There was also lots of construction happening, so I spent quite a while waiting in lines. But enough of that, here come the views. And yes, I know the pavement looks good in some of these, but they were repaving the beginning of the road :super

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    I rounded a corner, and suddenly:

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Where did that come from?? I stopped, ate lunch, and watched some surfers hit some massive waves. They were too far away for me to take pictures. It had to have been 80+ degrees on the beach.

    I continued on…

    [​IMG]

    ...and somehow made it to the end of Mattole Road with both myself and my bike intact. I headed up 101 through Eureka and Arcata, and then turned off on 299.

    I stopped for some reason, and about 30 seconds after I got back on the road, I discovered that my kickstand was still down when I heard it scraping in a left hand turn. I forget that pretty often, so no big deal...except when I went to kick it up, it wouldn’t stay :scratch somehow the spring came off. I stopped, ziptied it up (zipties are a gift from the gods), and went back to look for it, but no luck. Sorry Larry, I know you just gave me that kickstand…

    [​IMG]

    It was cold and slightly drizzly for the rest of the day. In other words, it really felt like I was getting to the PNW! Wooohoooo!

    I was on lots more twisties, but I took it a little easy because it was wet, and my rear tire is definitely on its way out. I’m gonna make it last till Bellingham, because I don’t feel like figuring out the logistics of (or paying for) another tire change so close to the end of the trip.

    I set up camp on the side of a tiny road up into the mountains...I’ll take some more pictures of the beautiful foggy mountains tomorrow, but don’t get too excited -- that’s all you’re gonna be seeing for the rest of the trip :rofl

    ----------
    Start: Benbow, CA
    End: Weitchpec, CA
    Mileage: 204 miles
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  17. jlevers

    jlevers Type 2 fun Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2016
    Oddometer:
    500
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Day 33


    Oh boy, what a day.

    It rained all night, and was still raining when I got up. Fog sure is purty, though...I don’t say that sarcasticaly.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I rode along Route 96 for a while. It was a little chilly and drizzly, but nothing too bad. There were lots of fire trucks around, and although I never actually saw the forest fires, I did see lots of places they’d passed through. What looks like leaves changing colors is actually burnt trees.

    [​IMG]IMG_0007 by jesse27999, on Flickr

    I turned off to a little forest road that went over some mountains to get to Grant’s Pass. Wow, as I went higher, it got rainier and colder. By the end of my time on that road, I was starting to get a little worried about my toes :vardy but I made it down to Grant’s Pass and holed up in a Carl Jr.’s for a while :lol3 they probably weren’t too pleased about Sir Grunge here scaring away their clientele :grim

    It wasn’t raining in Grant’s Pass, but as I headed back out, it started looking like rain again. I took this picture with the intention of captioning it “looks like it might rain,” and as I took the picture, it started raining :lol2

    [​IMG]

    But, to my great surprise, it cleared up and soon I was treated to this awesome view!

    [​IMG]

    I started up another pass (the pass that the town Grant’s Pass was named for), and it started out with these encouraging signs :rofl

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Well, about 10 minutes after I started up that road, the fog and rain returned :devildog I’m guessing you’re sensing a theme here :lol3

    I got over that pass, which was ~50 miles long and had, I shit you not, SNOW at the top, and decided it was probably better to do less rather than more tiny back roads, so I started bombing out to 101. Oh, did I mention it was 45 and raining most of the time? :vardy :vardy :vardy I’d love to go back to those roads in the summer with a friend sometime, though. I bet the views are amazing, and if I’d been able to really appreciate them, the roads would have been awesome too.

    [​IMG]

    At some point while I was going to 101, I decided that I really, really didn’t feeling like staying in my wet tent tonight, so I hit up my friend Tina, who was one of the Boy Scout leaders in my troop in Massachusetts. She had since moved to Waldport, Oregon, and had told me a few months back that I could stay at her place if I wanted. It seemed kinda far, but I decided to go for it. I hit 101 at Gold Beach around 5:45pm. I checked Google Maps, and...oh, it’s a 3 hour and 20 minute, 160 mile drive to Waldport. Well, here goes :shrug I at least got a pretty coastal view

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    That drive was absolutely, hands down, the most miserable thing I’ve ever done. I couldn’t wear my warmest layer, because it’s a down jacket and it was raining most of the time. I was screaming out songs to keep my teeth from chattering, and once it got dark, I couldn’t really see because my headlight is pretty bad. By the time I got there, I was mildly hypothermic and having a little trouble talking or using my hands properly. I didn’t stop shivering for about an hour, and I couldn’t walk for a while because my hamstrings had cramped up from not using my legs for so long. Tina plied me with hot cocoa, burritos, and blankets, and I eventually warmed up enough to function. You would have to pay me quite a bit to do that again. Tina, your mothering was much appreciated :lol3


    And yes, @ponytl, there will be people pictures :lol2 patience my friend :rofl

    ------------------------------
    Start: Weitchpec, CA
    End: Waldport, OR
    Mileage: 384 miles
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  18. oldtouring B

    oldtouring B Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2009
    Oddometer:
    974
    Location:
    Al Ba Jerky. NM
    Jesse, a heads up for Alaska.. the state bird is the mosquito!! They are very numerous and as big as a sparrow! Ask your uncle what he uses to reduce the number of bites. In Florida we used a product called "Cactus Juice" It did a good job of keeping those buggers away.. you will need something.. continue to ride safe..
    jlevers likes this.
  19. everready

    everready Stuck in Ohio....Ugh!!!

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2013
    Oddometer:
    3,426
    Location:
    Macedonia, Ohio
    Get a wide brimmed hat and a head net. You can thank me later.
    jlevers likes this.
  20. maldos

    maldos Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    27
    Location:
    Monarch Beach, CA
    Well the video was just posted and you can see it here 4:50


    Our first stop in Colorado was Idaho Springs where we met up with Jesse Levers, an 18 yo kid from Providence Town Massachusetts who made the decision to engage a solo motorcycle adventure across the U.S. Jesse has been followed by several adventure sites, and he's had several problems along the way receiving help from many. He's not the typical 18 year old, engaging well with those much older. It's been a fortuitous encounter for all. Jesse, your parents raised you right! Good luck, keep in touch.
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