Geezer Goes to the Beach

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by RexBuck, Jan 11, 2014.

  1. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

    Joined:
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    [FONT=&quot]In October Mrs RB and I were wandering about and the topic came up of deciding what to do for the winter. Most of the family is coming home for Christmas but after that, getting to somewhere without snow seemed ideal. [/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]
    I'm always Jonesin for Mexico but we were looking at some other destinations but Mexico crept back to the top of the list and seemed the best place to satisfy our desire for a relaxing place with no snow.
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Hmmm, well, if we are going to Mexico, I guess we'll need some transportation . . . like, maybe my bike. [/FONT]:evil

    [FONT=&quot]And now we have the genesis for a little adventure ride.
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]So, here's the plan. When we get back in early November, I’ll ride my bike down to Sacramento and put it in storage. Come home for Christmas with the family. Then, return to Sacramento in January, retrieve the bike and head to Mexico. Rendevoux with Mrs RB north of Purerto Vallarta, put the shorts on and commence the search of endless Tacos, Tostados and Tequila with the odd Negra Modelo thrown in.[/FONT]
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    [FONT=&quot]So, now it’s early November and we have just returned from our travels and I look at my bike’s tags and realized I have 6 days to expiry – 6 days to get organized, packed, find some bare roads to Sacramento and get it put away.[/FONT]
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    [FONT=&quot]Hmmm, a day to pack and get the bike set up (it's not like I haven't done this before), 4 days down to Sacramento and one day left over. Should be doable. So, I did.[/FONT]
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    [FONT=&quot]I'm watching the weather vacillating between snow and rain. Crap, I hate snow! Particularly with a bike. Going to have to get out of Dodge regardless of the weather as I don't have any time to wait out a storm so I'm hoping Mother Nature has a smilie for me.[/FONT]
    #1
  2. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    [FONT=&quot]Finally time to leave, no snow and 35 deg F. No snow down by the lake but still pretty dreary.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]
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    [FONT=&quot]The first day’s temperature varied between 34 and 39.
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Stopped at a little place in Okanagan Falls for breakfast. Not particularly remarkable other than I really craved some bacon and eggs. For some reason they don’t eat bacon or hash browns for breakfast in France. Not that I eat bacon and eggs a lot, it's just when you can’t have them is when you really want them. While a pretty mundane photo, man, it all sure tasted good.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]I was getting cold and stopped in Ephrata for an afternoon warm up. I think I almost chugged a half pot of coffee. Asked the waitress if she had any pie . . . “no, but I have a cinnamon bun.” Sure, I love cinnamon buns. I’m sitting there minding my own business sucking back coffee when all of a sudden there was a thud and I swear the table shook. She had dropped this friggin Cinamon Pie. It was huge.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Just a word on what makes a good cinnamon bun: Cinnamon mixture is gooey with lots of cinnamon; The bread part is soft – you shouldn’t need a steak knife to cut it; No raisins (please – who puts raisins in anything?) and; Good icing. And . . . just so you know, sticky buns are not cinnamon buns - they are some sort of candied bread product that sticks to your teeth. Anyhow, this monster was perfect! I ate it all . . . of course.
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]No other bikes on the road today. Stayed at the infamous Super 8 in Yakima[/FONT]
    #2
  3. Kedgi

    Kedgi Banned

    Joined:
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    Hey Steve

    Good to see you're back on the road. Hope to catch up with you somewhere down the line.

    Kedgi
    #3
  4. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    Hey Dwight - Keep in touch. Hope your bike is working better.
    #4
  5. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    May 29, 2002
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    Location:
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    #5
  6. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    Nope, I'm not known to put reason on anything . . . some claim I'm actually unreasonable. Who knew?

    OK Mr guy who can spell, thanks for catching that - I'll fix it. :thumb

    However, talking about raisins . . . they don't belong in anything baked. The only good raisin is one crushed and fermented before it was dried out. My theory is that if a grape isn't good enough to make something drinkable out of it then it's dried out and they try to pawn it off as food. Just sayin.
    #6
  7. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    [FONT=&quot]At least today started out a bit better . . . 4 deg C (39F). Clouds on Satus Pass stayed high until over the summit then some fog. Got real thick after Goldendale – could see about 3 car lengths. Idiot in front of me must be from South America – driving in the fog with no lights.[/FONT][FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Had breakfast at one of my favorite stops, Country Café in Lyle. I know many of you may be surprised at this, I have a picture of my breakfast . . . :dg (I'll try to cut down on the foodie stuff later . . . really!)[/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot][​IMG]
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    [FONT=&quot]Started pissing rain after that for about 2 hours. Went over the Bridge of the Gods near on the Columbia River near the Cascade Locks which is a toll bridge. I pulled over before the toll booth to dig out some change as I didn’t want to take my gloves off since wet hands are a bugger to get back in a glove. As I’m rummaging around trying to get a grip on my wallet, a guy pulls up, rolls his window down and tells me not to bother, he’ll take care of my toll. Only 50 coents but a greatly appreciated gesture at that moment. [/FONT]
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    [FONT=&quot]Riding through a bunch of the really twisty back roads east of Portland and most are covered with maple leaves. Mixed with the rain and I was taking it pretty easy around the corners.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Rain let up as I got further south. Real pretty. Starting to harvest Christmas trees. I was looking out for the helicopters working but couldn't spot any this day. This video someone else did and is how they bring the trees out to the trucks.[/FONT]

    <iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/08K_aEajzNA" allowfullscreen="" width="560" frameborder="0" height="315"></iframe>

    [FONT=&quot]Finally saw another bike, a couple of metric cruisers were out enjoying the fall weather.[/FONT][FONT=&quot]
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    [FONT=&quot]Stopped in Roseburg at the Quality Inn for the night.[/FONT]
    #7
  8. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    [FONT=&quot]OK, let's get this part finished up.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]November 8[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]Great ride down the Redwood Highway. I love that bit as you approach the coast at Arcata and winding down the little canyon then through the Redwoods. Spectacular! Then of course, I can never get enough of riding through the Humbolt Redwoods State Park.
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    [FONT=&quot] [/FONT][​IMG]

    [FONT=&quot]For those that don’t know, the road through here is the old highway and you can stay on it until almost Garberville before dumping back on the freeway. Wandering through all the Redwood groves and a twisty 2 lane road with virtually no one else around . . .[/FONT]

    [​IMG]

    [FONT=&quot]Stopped in Willets for the night. Picked a very average looking old school mom & pop type motel, wasn’t expecting much and it sure wasn’t. I usually have great luck with these but this one didn’t work.[/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot]November 9[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Got out of Willets and headed down to Sacramento. There are so many great riding roads in this part of California and I discovered another that I’m sure I have not been on before. Highways 29 and 175 below Clear Lake were just a hoot. Not much traffic, decent roads and crookeder than a dog’s hind leg.
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    [FONT=&quot]Plowed my way through the city and got to my usual hotel in Rancho Cordova. Will take a few days to vist with my Dad, visit my Son and his wife in San Francisco and finish up some bike maintenance.[/FONT]
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    [FONT=&quot]November 10[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Liscence plates expire today and it’s a Sunday so, thought I would get out and go for an early short last ride of the year. Still watching my voltmeter closely and wanted to experiment with a couple of things. I’ll talk about the electrical issues next.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Anyhow, found some great roads nearby that were so much fun. I love these kind of roads particularly when you have been fighting the elements and a timetable and the sun going down at 5 PM. This pic doesn’t show the huge washouts and general deterioration of the road but gives an inkling. Now I can put the bike away.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]
    #8
  9. Sleddog

    Sleddog Ridin, again:)

    Joined:
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    SE South Dakota
    Another Geezer episode.....

    BTW , Raisins, when bake in cinnamon rolls, re-hydrate, puff up & burst.... distributing little pockets of nectar throughout....:nod

    Sleddog
    #9
  10. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    Nector? I can think of another word for that . . . :puke1. Try one without those little "pockets of ???" sometime. You will exclaim, "Holy Shit, that RexBuck guy really gets it. I had no idea" Just sayin'. :D
    #10
  11. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    Apparently this Ride Report got shuffled over to "Day Trippin" because of my lack of posts. Boy, those Mods are a tough crew, crackin the whip. Got it sorted now and, I promise to try to write some interesting crap.
    #11
  12. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

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    <!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <o:OfficeDocumentSettings> <o:RelyOnVML/> <o:AllowPNG/> </o:OfficeDocumentSettings> </xml><![endif]--> [FONT=&quot]During the trip ferrying my bike down to California I have been watching my little onboard voltmeter telling me my bike is struggling to power the bike's electrical needs along with my heated liner, grips and spot lights. Normally it should not be a problem to run this extra gear on this bike – it doesn’t have a lot of spare power but more than enough for my needs. In fact, I have noticed it struggling ever since my South America trip with voltages seeming to gradually fall as time wore on.[/FONT]
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    [FONT=&quot]There is a known issue on the pre 2012 800GSs with the Stator (alternator) failing at pretty low mileages. The stator produces the electricity to power everything on the bike. Apparently the stator is getting too hot and since it consists of a bunch of wire wound around a number of posts, the insulation deteriorates, shorts out and the stator can't produce any electricity. In the warranty fix, when they replace the stator, BMW also installs a redesigned flywheel which has some oversized holes that will splash a little more cooling oil on the stator. Knowing this was a potential problem, I actually carried a replacement aftermarket stator with me on the last trip.
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]
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    [FONT=&quot]In my rush to leave home, one of the things I forgot to pack was my multi-meter - that gadget with wires and dials that can be used to measure some electrical stuff. There are some pretty straight forward tests to determine if the stator has failed. So, I really didn't know what the status of my stator was until I returnd in January. I couldn't take it into the dealer then for a check out as my plates had expired.[/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot]Given my suspisions when I put the bike in storage, I had booked it in with A&S BMW immediately upon my return.
    [/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot][/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]My initial discussion with the service writer was a bit bizarre. He tried to pin the problem on my AntiGravity Lithium battery and since I was pretty sure it was a stator problem, I couldn't understand what he was on about. A battery caused a stator failure. Please! As far as I know, a battery can’t fry a stator. [/FONT][FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Fast forward to my January return armed with my multi-meter. The stator has three identical circuits. There are 3 tests but the last one is the critical one. It measures the AC voltage of each circuit. They each should be over 50 vAC . . . mine were 60, 57 and 4. Bingo! We have a winner. (I love it when I'm right - just doesn't happen often . . . ask Mrs RB:D)
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]
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    [FONT=&quot]When I brought the bike in, they did the same tests I had and determened the stator and regulator in fact needed replacing. If they order parts right away, the earliest they can be in will be Tuesday (It was Friday) . That was fine as I wanted some time with my Dad anyhow.
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    [FONT=&quot]Then I tell them my bike is covered by a Canadian warranty but nooooo they didn’t want to deal with the foreign warranty. Unfortunately my dealer was still closed for the holidays so I couldn't confirm what I should do. I didn't want to hold up the parts order so I told them to go ahead, I'll pay for it and figure out how to get the money back from my dealer or BMW Canada. [/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Fortunately my dealer (Bentley in Kelowna) is back to work the same day the parts are arriving so I call them first thing and talk to both the service guy and the manager and was told I can’t claim the cost of the repair back from BMW Canada and the US dealer should submit the warranty claim directly. They called BMW Canada who in turn called BMW USA and by the time I arrived for my bike, all was resolved.
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]I have bought a lot of crap from A&S over the last couple of years and they have always treated me well. The service they did was actually good, they got the parts quickly and got the job done when they said they would. It would have been nice if they would have just skipped the bullshit that did little more than irritated me. (Yes, I know, this probably isn't the first time I've been irriated . . .)
    [/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot][/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]Anyhow, bike runs like a top and I've got power out the wazoo. I'm a happy camper. :clap
    [/FONT]

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    #12
  13. Mcgee

    Mcgee Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    777
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    Glad you resolved your electrical issues. Looking forward to the rest of the report. Thanks...
    #13
  14. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,117
    Location:
    Interior BC, Canada
    And Kedgi (guess multi-quotes won't do more than 3)

    How rude of me. I didn't welcome you guys along. Thanks for joining in.
    #14
  15. Vato Jinete

    Vato Jinete Feo del Norte Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2010
    Oddometer:
    814
    Location:
    Excelsior, MN via San Antonio, TX
    Ready for another Geezer RR:lurk
    #15
  16. Jick Magger

    Jick Magger Exile on Main Street

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2011
    Oddometer:
    889
    Location:
    Okanagan Valley BC, Canada/Scottsdale, Arizona
    Allright Steve. I'm in for a boatload of envy. Looking forward to following along but would rather be riding along. Be safe
    #16
  17. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,117
    Location:
    Interior BC, Canada
    Thanks for tagging along Vato, nice to have you.
    #17
  18. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,117
    Location:
    Interior BC, Canada
    Sorry it didn't work out for you to hook up for a bit. Maybe later.

    Thanks for coming along on my little epistle . . . should be a pretty relaxing time.
    #18
  19. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,117
    Location:
    Interior BC, Canada
    [FONT=&quot]Finally on the road again. Good to spend time with my Dad, see my son and Daughter-in-law and get all my packing done.[/FONT][FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]This trip was really last minute so I really have not done my usual anal preparation and planning. In fact, done very little. I think everything is fine now that I have a new stator and a new video camera to replace the aged GoPro. Have a couple of tires mounted on top of my stuff as I don’t think either of my tires will make it down and back on their remaining rubber.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]My original plan was to go down the California coast and enter Mexico at Tecate then take various roads east through Puerto Peñasco and on to Caborca then east. Since California has had virtually no snow, I thought I would take advantage of that and follow some of the Sierrra foothill roads that would not normally be accessible. [/FONT][FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]They have an incredible drought in California now – having received the same precipitation in 2013 as they did in Dec 2012. Ski hills around Tahoe look summery – people are going up there for hiking instead of skiing.[/FONT]

    Here we are all packed up and ready to leave my hotel that I'm probably staying at 5 or 6 times a year when I visit my Dad.


    [​IMG]

    [FONT=&quot]My route took me down Hwy 49 then up Hwy 120 to Yosemite. Stopped at a Mel’s Diner (Well it is actually Mel’s and Faye’s Diner . . . not to be confused with the American Graffiti version in Sacramento) and had a very respectable plate full of the all American classic, bacon and eggs.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Plenty of traffic on the northern stretch of 49 but as I get closer to Yosemite, it thins out dramatically. Probably doesn’t hurt that most of the mountain hotels and shops are closed for the winter and of course, Hwy 120 over the Tioga Pass is also closed for the winter.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]When I hit the Park entrance, I discover my Seniors Lifetime National Park Pass is at home in its drawer . . . forgot it - idiot! So, I had to buy another one . . . all of $10 – half the price of a regular entrance fee and it's for life . . . it once again pays to be a Geezer! :super
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Find the Chevron station at Yosemite for a much needed fill up and by now it is over 6000 feet, snow on the side of the road and around 5 deg C (40ish F). The Ranger at the gate told me the snow and ice on the roads doesn’t really start until about 8000 feet. Remarkable for this time of year.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]

    These snow-blowers are huge and there were quite a few parked around this area. They can get 5 feet of snow sometimes in these mountains and need giant equipment to keep the roads open

    [​IMG]

    [FONT=&quot]Carried on down the mountain past some fairly empty lakes – suspect these won’t be filling this year. Here is a mediocre video I did as a demonstration video for my camera. One of the things Drift has to change is to find a way to make the mounting system adjustable. The attachement to the helmet is a one time permanent stick on deal. Some people might stick it on the wrong spot and without an adjustment the camera isn’t pointed in the optimal position. I have another mount coming.
    [/FONT]


    <iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/uDvs1wYiXjI" allowfullscreen="" width="560" frameborder="0" height="315"></iframe>

    [FONT=&quot]I landed in the little valley town of Reedley just as the sun was disappearing. Edgewater Inn, decent place and dinner in the bar next door. Beer was wet and sandwich was thick and tasty.[/FONT]
    #19
  20. RexBuck

    RexBuck Long timer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,117
    Location:
    Interior BC, Canada
    [FONT=&quot]Got off to a late start this morning as I was figuring out how to better use my new video camera. My old GoPro has been ok but I have found it quite cumbersome to produce usable video – 6 to 8 hours a day of video is just too much to watch to find something usable. [/FONT][FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Rather than go with the newest GoPro version, I decided on a competitor called the Drift Ghost S. The camera has the ability to video in a loop which allows you to save a few minutes of action that you just passed. End up with a few small files which are easy to review. Also has a remote control that works allowing you to record when you want. Even has an Ap for the SmartPhone – pretty spiffy but difficult to use when riding.[/FONT][FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Here are a couple more videos. Given the problems I had yesterday with the wrong angle of the camera when mounted on my helmet, today I mounted it on my handlebars on some RamMounts I had around. Get a little bit of windscreen on the side but a much better perspective. I think I like the handlebar mounting better for riding videos anyhow.[/FONT]





    Great ride again today – running around the back farm roads in the foothills above Fresno and Bakersfield. Great fun! When the altitude got over 5000 feet, started to see bits of leftover sand from the last snowfall. One section had a pretty good covering (like about an inch thick :yikes ) of sand across the whole road . . . not a lot of fun on pavement.

    Over the mountains, back north a bit and through Death Valley. Going to be nice being there when it isn’t 140F. The view coming down the hill into Death Valley is spectacular.



    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot]Here are a couple of photos I took with the Drift while riding - much better than the photos I used to get out of the GoPro[/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]


    [FONT=&quot][​IMG][/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT]Heading down into Death Valley, was starting to get dark so was shooting for Panamint Resort. Stopped at Panamint which looks to be pretty rustic and wanted $95 for a room. Even considered camping for $7 but, since it was a nice night with little traffic, decided to carry on to Stovepipe Wells to see what they had to offer.

    Not a bad place – pricy - $105 but a little nicer. Restaurant and Saloon. Saloon plays old John Wayne movies since there is no TV around. Had a decent burger and a couple Dead Guy Ales which they had on tap – one of my all time favorites.


    [FONT=&quot][​IMG]
    [/FONT]
    #20