Dad and Son down the Westcoast (from Germany)

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Nils K, Jul 26, 2019.

  1. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

    Joined:
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    So I never really wrote a Blog or anything before. But I kinda like the idea.
    So me and my dad are both from Germany, we dreamed about a motorcycle trip together for a long time and now its finally there :)
    We are starting our trip together, after I already traveled through Canada for a week.

    For any foreigners out here who are looking for recommendations on the registration process in Washington check out my original post in Trip Planning:

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/us-westcoast-trip.1394622/page-2

    I'll just update this Blog from time to time, very open for any reccomendations for a trip down the westcoast :)


    So let's start my first Day Report:

    Day 1:
    After I got an excellent Pancake breakfast from @szurszewski. I started the trip from Olympia, Washington. Drove all the way to the Cycle Gear in Lynwood where I bought boots and a pair of gloves for the trip. After another hour of driving I got off at Costco for a typical American Snack (from the view of a German). So HotDog and Pepsi and while I was enjoying that:
    [​IMG]

    It slowly started to rain, so I decided to hurry up with eating my Lunch and try to get in front of the rain clouds. Which actually worked out really good since I didnt got wet at all.
    After costco it was straight boring Freeway Number 5 driving all the way to the border, with some smaller traffic jams in between. While being in this slow traffic I really started to love and appreciate the Rekluse Clutch.

    After I crossed the border and made it through the Vancouver rush hour traffic I drove up halfway to Mount Norquay since I knew that there was a nice lookout:
    [​IMG]

    From there on the road got finally some curves and really nice landscapes. I was riding with a decent view of high mountains to the right and left and water to my left too.

    After basically 5hours of riding the new bike I have to say I know feel really comfortable and think I'm starting to get the feeling for this kind of bike.
    The only bummer which happend today was that I lost my extra raincover for my bag on the passenger seat, must had caught some wind.

    Anyways I had a nice evening with an old friend in the Whistler Staff Housing Appartments, where I'm staying now for 2 nights.
    [​IMG]
    It got quite late but I wanted to finish this post, otherwise I would have forgotten everything by tomorrow. So please excuse any mistakes and nonsense :)
    #1
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  2. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    Day 2 - 8:
    So after 2 days in Whistler filled with sightseeing and downhill mountain biking (which was a blast).

    [​IMG]
    I drove back to Horshoe Bay, Vancouver. Again this Highway from Whistler to Horsshoe Bay is just gorgeous. Great to see how well the bike community over hear works, there were a lot of cops out there and every biker gave every other biker a quick heads up with tapping the hand on their helmets.
    [​IMG]

    After I arrived in Nanaimo, BC I drove another hour to Comox Valley, BC. I stayed there the whole last winter and worked as a Lift Operator up on Mount Washington. I stayed two nights at my place of my landlords (from winter time) after two great days there I took the next ride to Tofino, BC.
    Pretty boring ride down Highway 19, but the Highway 4 from Qualicom Beach to Tofino is amazing. Lots of huge mountains arround and a perfect narrow and winding road.

    After another 2 days in Tofino I was about to drive to Victoria and caught my first little rain ride. It was raining in the morning in tofino so I started in the rain coat @szurszewski gave me before I started the trip. Worked out perfect i got a little wet but not bad at all. After a pretty long ride down Highway 1 to Victoria I stopped at the Niagara Trestle and went for a little Hike.
    [​IMG]
    Stayed for one night at a friends place in Victoria and now I'm on the ferry from Victoria to Port Angeles where I'm gonna meet @szurszewski.
    My dad is arriving in Seattle today I'm gonna meet him and we will start the Roadtrip on the 30th of July. I'm super dazzled how good this trip went so far it's great to be back on the Bike. I fell 100% comfortable on the bike and even if it has quite big nubby tires it's great for sharp fast curves aswell.
    [​IMG]
    I'm really looking forward for the next 4 weeks :)

    Ride Safe ✌

    PS: Highspeed of the Bike is a little over 160km/h, then the Handle Bars start to shake like crazy ;)
    #2
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  3. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    I was wondering if there is an app out there where I could like track the whole trip. To see where we have been.
    Only got my Android Phone but if someone knows an App or something that would be great :)
    #3
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  4. szurszewski

    szurszewski Long timer

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    If you’re reading this but I haven’t read the other thread linked by the OP, I suggest you scroll back up and check that out - because what @Nils K doesn’t mention is his whirlwind and quite successful bike shopping start to this whole thing.

    I’ll add a few pics here so you can recognize our traveler if you spot him on the road.

    This one?
    B20BAB7B-6FE8-44F5-904E-7E05927B7AC9.jpeg

    Maybe something larger?
    F555E5DA-A0A2-4F43-A9A7-F7D8C91EDDA9.jpeg

    A bumblebee?
    1CA7A81C-935B-4FAD-AC42-36084EEB90C3.jpeg

    ...and our rider and his ride (in the background - even though that red bike does match better with what I can only assume to be his favorite shirt ;) )on their return to the US ready to start in proper:
    8D62EE93-6932-4F73-BC2F-F0800BCF69DB.jpeg
    #4
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  5. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    By the Way just found a picture I forgot to post yesterday:

    Me and Josh riding down to Highway 106...josh is a good leader :clap

    20190726_161656.jpg
    #5
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  6. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    Day 9:
    After we started the morning with probably 3 hours of just waiting and talking in the eaglerider store, to get my dad's rental bike.
    20190728_125728.jpg
    This picture was shortly before we headed out, which u can clearly tell on the happy faces :)

    We where finally good to start our Trip...eagleriders still has to change the back tire and service the back tomorrow.

    And this is the first picture and impression of my dad on his new Bike for the next 4 weeks:
    20190728_133014.jpg
    We sailed down Highway 169 South to Enumclaw, where I had big issues with getting fuel into my Bike....wrong credit card pin...pump wouldn't pump because of this rubber protector arround the nozzle...took some time and nerves but in the end my bike got some fuel.
    From there one down Highway 410 with a stop in Greenwater Tavern for Late Lunch.
    We kept following Highway 410 South and then took the Highway 123 to Steven's Canyon Road, this road literally took us to paradise. Amazing road with endless scenic views. And then after about 1 hour of pure fun, turns and views we arrived:
    20190728_174543.jpg
    In Paradise :)

    After a quick Loop arround the Paradise Lodge we started heading back on Highway 710 and Highway 161 up North to our AirBnB.

    In Total for the first day about 204 miles in 6 hours of riding. Pretty long for the first tour but everyone did great especially my dad who thought he couldn't ride that long.
    20190728_174524.jpg
    What a great day :clap:clap
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  7. szurszewski

    szurszewski Long timer

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    Hope you don't mind if I add a few pictures.

    Despite the place being a sea of Harleys, I accidentally managed a picture with - if you look closely - German, Italian and British bikes but no 'merican Iron.
    IMG_7637.jpg

    Finally almost sort of about to leave with the bike. Kind of. The manager seemed surprisingly versed in the GS's features, but he couldn't figure out how to change the load settings on the ESA (maybe this bike doesn't do that?).
    IMG_7645.jpg

    Couldn't get the card reader to work at this one either.
    IMG_7650.jpg

    And a last look at Rainier with the setting sun shining on the west face.
    IMG_7651.jpg
    #7
  8. liv2day

    liv2day Life is all about how you handle plan B Supporter

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    Definitely in for this RR, I think it's incredibly cool that you've flown over here from Germany and managed to get your Dad to fly over from Germany as well and get some bikes to ride. I can only hope my sons (or at least one of 'em) wants to do the same thing with me when they're old enough.

    I haven't checked the planning thread, but will do so. Do you have certain destinations in mind or what are your travel plans? Going all the way down the west coast, or will you head inland a bit and check out the interior of some of the states?

    There's no doubt we have an incredible amount of opportunity to ride and explore here in the PNW (Pacific Northwest if you're not familiar). I have some suggestions of things to check out if your plans take out south into Oregon. I also have good friends who are also from Germany that live close - their kids are close to the same ages as my boys. We get together for dinner and camping, I'm sure they'd love to chat with fellow countrymen if you find yourselves near PDX.

    Feel free to reach out if you'd like some ideas on where to ride in OR. The Cascades are amazing and if you want to experience the Oregon outback (my personal favorite riding area), it's down in SE Oregon by the NV border - incredible riding there.

    Keep the sticky side down, looking forward to following along :ricky :thumb
    #8
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  9. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    PM is out ;)
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  10. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    Day 10:

    We started today with another visit at eagleriders, were we got some good news.
    Instead of getting new tires on the GS they would give my dad another Bike. So we drove to the Seattle BMW Dealer to pick up a BMW R1200 GS.
    I think this bike is way cooler.

    We are ready to roll :rofl

    We started off from Seattle Down Highway 5 South and then took Highway 7 South which took us along the Elbe
    20190730_142600.jpg

    via Highway 12 and Highway 505 we made it to Highway 504 which brought us all the way up to the Johnston Ridge Observatory which is close to the Mt Helen's National Volcanic Monument.
    Highway 504 has some really scenic nice parts to offer:
    20190730_160510.jpg
    Especially the top part of 504 is really twisty nothing sharp but long turns back on back. So nice!!

    Mt Helen's from the Johnston Ridge Observatory
    20190730_165132.jpg

    The way down was just as nice as the way up. Not many cars arround which gave us the chance to really enjoy some curves. We worked our way west on 504 to Highway 5 South and then took a pretty windy ride down Highway 5 to Vancouver where we are staying for the night.

    Definitely have to say I really like the BMW R1200GS and its pretty cool to realize that the dream of riding a motorcycle down the westcoast together with your dad from Germany is finally coming through :D :ricky

    20190730_161551.jpg
    #10
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  11. liv2day

    liv2day Life is all about how you handle plan B Supporter

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    I love it! I responded to your PM on your route and an alternative suggestion that takes you down the eastern side of the Cascade range. I think you'll truly enjoy it if it's not too late to plan for it.

    Great capture of St. Helens, haven't been up to Windy Ridge in many moons - used to love riding my gixxer up there.

    You guys are going to have a great time as you make your way south. If there's anything I can help with when your in the PDX area, don't hesitate to reach out :-) :-)
    #11
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  12. Zakko

    Zakko Adventurer

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    Hey guys, my son @Nils K has shown me this fantastic blog that I had to join right away. Thank you all for the great tour tips! It‘s making our trip even more enjoyable. At the Moment, it looks like we‘ll be cruising between hgwy 101 and coast until the end of our trip :clap
    #12
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  13. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    Dont forget all our inland Trips dad! :jack:ricky
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  14. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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    nice start.....keep them coming.....:clap:clap:clap
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  15. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    Day 11:

    Josh (@szurszewski) joined us again :clap
    So we meet Josh this morning right at Highway 84 South, he then took us on a really nice drive on the Historic Columbia Highway.
    20190801_092519.jpg

    After this really nice view and ride in the morning we sailed straight down to Detroit, OR via Highway 224. Which is just like all the roads we took today absolutely amazing.
    View onto the smaller Detroit Harbour:
    20190801_115144.jpg


    We made sure to fuel up in Detroit, Josh and my dad got some coffee I got some Fries with Cheese and Chilli and water :).
    Our next stop was the Top of McKenzie Pass, that is by far the best road if ever been on. Absolutely gorgeous endless winding narrow turns.
    And as soon as u get to the top there is old lava everywhere, pretty cool to drive on a road through lava.
    20190801_144230.jpg
    20190801_144651.jpg
    Thanks to @Gustavo for this amazing reccomendation.

    Best Thing today was we were able to do McKenzie Pass twice since we drove it down to get to Aufderheide Drive / Forest Service Road 19.
    20190801_160649.jpg
    20190801_160726.jpg
    This one took us all the way from Rainbow to Oakridge. Another really nice kind off a backroad trip. It's all paved and just a few parts have gravel. 100% the best connection between Rainbow and Oakridge.
    After we drove half way of Aufderheide Drive, we decided to make a stop to snack and drink something...since we stopped at an outlet of a logging road I decided I'll drive it up a little to finally use the bike were it belongs...drove up emptied some water out of my body and then turned arround.
    While turning arround I recognized there was not enough room to make a whole turn on the road. So I thought I would go a little into the ditch and then out again.
    So I was in the ditch recognized it's to narrow and the Gravel which goes up to road is to loose to cut through...followed the ditch a little further down were I saw kind of a ramp, next to a pipe, going up to the road. Got off the bike and then tried to push/drive it up. Realized that the soil underneath is pretty loose and that I'm starting to just dig the bike in.....that was this moment when u know u f up :imaposer

    Nothing happened to the bike nothing happened to me but the bike was parked in the ditch now...really well tho!

    20190801_171548.jpg
    20190801_172934.jpg

    So I walked down and got my dad and Josh to come up help me push the bike out. Walking up took like 10min while getting the bike out only took 1min :)

    20190801_173139.jpg
    After this adventure we drove to Oakridge were we are staying in a motel overnight...the first motel experience for us germans :1drink
    20190801_182730.jpg
    #15
  16. szurszewski

    szurszewski Long timer

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    B4AB5A7C-9814-4A24-A6AE-E8322A1220E6.jpeg 7E0985EB-A911-4110-959A-5719D4B8CA9D.jpeg 3E7EC139-5864-49D6-AB0E-23A7AEF263A1.jpeg 013F6410-1FCC-469C-B230-48DC275EF197.jpeg No comment(s) :beer
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  17. liv2day

    liv2day Life is all about how you handle plan B Supporter

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    Damn - that BMW is augured in :lol3 :lol3 :lol3 Glad you were able to get it out without any issues.

    Great pics and it looks like you guys experienced some of the really fun roads that wind down through the Cascade range. I haven't been up the McKenzie pass in many years, how was the gravel in the corners?

    What's the the plan after leaving Oakridge, are you guys heading west toward the coast? Not sure if it's in scope, but you should definitely take the time to stop by Crater Lake on your journey south. It's one of those places you need to visit in person, even if it's usually swamped with tourists.

    Continued safe travels fellas, again I can't tell you how cool I think it is that you're doing this as a father/son team :ricky :thumb
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  18. szurszewski

    szurszewski Long timer

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    It was parked so perfectly I suspect he put it there on purpose just to make his dad and me walk up the damn hill...and back down.

    I mean, we were about halfway into the walk and I said something like, gee - I didn’t think you’d have been so far - maybe we should have ridden up instead of walking, and Nils was like, yeah - probably ;)

    ...of course, he rode back after we freed the bike while his dad and I walked back :gerg

    I guess I get up earlier than these guys, so a few pics while I’m waiting...

    I don’t want to say they do a lot of planning, but....
    C5534EEF-3DA0-4F5E-B81F-335B5EC54724.jpeg A871BF14-DB9A-44AA-A20C-19E51774EBEB.jpeg 9228C3D5-7B4B-42FE-BA0C-2C1B66DDC1EA.jpeg


    They also ride a bit though :p3rry



    B37C4B88-4AF7-4271-820D-7BF2E5BC01D5.jpeg
    #18
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  19. boristhebold

    boristhebold Been here awhile

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    What an awesome trip...a month riding with your dad :clap
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  20. Nils K

    Nils K Adventurer

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    There is basically no gravel at all on the road or in the corners. If u get the time definitely head up there :ricky

    We are planning on taking some Backroads down south from Oakridge (reccomendations came from the guy in the picture with the map on the wall, he was kinda wasted and high, but his road recommendation still sounded great).
    Then take the road to crater lake, go arround and then sail down to Medford.
    RR is following tonight :)
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