Good rides with Motorcycle permit restrictions in CA

Discussion in 'Americas' started by btcn, Dec 19, 2011.

  1. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    Ok maybe this ain't the right thread for this but I couldn't think of nowhere else.

    Ok so I have my motorcycle permit at the moment, so Y'all probably no the restrictions of no passengers, freeway, or night riding.

    I've been rided without a motorcycle license on a 150 cc Scooter and Dirtbikes for a few years, but last summer I restored an 85 Honda Shadow 700 so I got it ridable so I took the MSC and took the permit test. Now I'm under 21 so I have to wait 6 months, well now a little less than 5 to get my Motorcycle License.

    Anyways I do my best and not break non of these rules, as hard as it is specially since I road for a while. But not a huge deal it ain't that long.

    But one question is if anyone is faimilar with California Highway 152 I ride on it to go towards Merced CA a bit. First I can't tell if its a Freeway or highway. 152 is mostly a highway but then you are on an onramp on 152 west and it looks an aweful lot like a freeway and has many onramps But there is houses with only access to it, like driveways right onto it, and some turnoffs without no ramps. So I think it ain't no freeway but then its divided and speed limit is 65 MPH. I though only Interstates can have 65 MPH speed limit, highways only up to 55 MPH. So anyone now if this is an expressway [I think I can ride on expressways?] or is it considered a Freeway? There is no green sign as far as I know that says Freeway entrance, or no signs that say bicycles Peds or Motordriven cycles prohibited, but I see CHP cars on it and I thought they usually only sit on Freeways mostly and theres State Police and I sure don't want to mess with that!

    Also I use google maps to plan my rides. But when I say avoid highway is this Freeway or just 2 lane highway? Cause it won't use this part even if I try make it, but it will use other parts 55 MPH of 152. Any clairifications or ideas would be appreciated.

    Also anyone around CA know of some good long rides without Freeway starting in the bay area? I'm thinking Highway 1 but it will suck cause I have to start in Santa Cruz to go to Half Moon Bay but if I go early I think I can manage.

    Thanks.
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  2. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    I think you are good to go!

    My mother-in-law is elderly, and has the same restriction on her auto driver's license. The DMV told her that Hwy 152, 59, and 108 were all OK, just not Interstate 5, 101, or 99. Those are considered freeways because they are free from cross traffic, not because they are multiple lane roads. Highways 152 and 108 both have multi lane sections, but have cross traffic. CHP patrol residential neighborhoods in the Sierra, so that doesn't mean anything.

    If you want to stay off the big roads regardless, there are alternatives that would add fun to your ride. For instance, to get to the central valley, you can go over Mount Hamilton past Lick Observatory (which is worth a stop in itself). It is a really twisty road, though, so be extra careful with that 700! That would take a good portion of the day, though.

    Or you can ride over Pacheco Pass (152) into the central valley (be ready for gusty cross winds), then turn on Hwy 33, to Hwy140, and it takes you to Merced. Only the pass will be multiple lanes and windy.

    The coast offers some great rides too. You can take 152 from Gilroy over Madonna Pass, head north, then come back on Hwy 9, or Hwy 92 out of Half Moon Bay. Once you are on top of 92, you reach the famous Skyline Blvd. That is sportbike central, so watch out for fast bikes passing you. If you can master the coastal range highways, you will be the one to watch out for. I would personally steer clear of Hwy 17. I've been riding for years, and still avoid "Blood Alley" as they called it when I was growing up in San Jose.

    By the time you ride all of that, your license restrictions will probably be done.

    Do you know people in Merced? If you do, and can stay overnight, that opens up lots of Central Sierra riding. That's a whole 'nother topic...
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  3. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    Thank you very much, this is exactly the info I needed.

    I kind of thought 152 was ok, but just wanted to double check, I really don't want to lose my permit right now as my bike is my only transportation right now.

    Those are some great riding ideas, sounds great! Yea I've done Hamiliton before on my scooter, it is a great ride! Real twisty though! The 700 handles so so, its a Cruiser so its not that great, but its more about skill and experince than bike in lots of cases. Fun enough for my riding.

    Those are some real great ideas though, definitly helps me out. I've done some riding I rode 152 over the mountain past Mt Madonna but turned back in Watsonville. But I'll definitly take some longer rides.

    I don't really no noone in Merced though. But yea with it gitten dark as early as 5 now I have limited amount of riding I can do.

    Overnight stays on weekend rides is actually quite an idea. But I don't really no noone anywhere close and I don't have much money, I can definitly not afford no hotels at like $50+ a night for the cheap ones!:eek1

    But one idea I've been thinking about it camping out in them hills like in a state park? That way I don't got to pay much, I got me a tent and all that, easily put it in the bike. It gits real cold at night though, in the low 30s down here I'd imagine a bit colder up in them hills though. So I'd needs lots of blankets.

    But I think it'd be cool, sound like a good idea?
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  4. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    There are some places you can camp for free. Stanislaus National Forest up above Sonora has "dispersed camping". If you stop in at the Mi Wuk Ranger Station, they can guide you to the spots, mostly near rivers. Yes, its real cold right now up there, like mid to low 20s. It can be done with enough blankets, but is much more fun in the summer. You could also camp (with a fee) up Hwy 4, near Lake Alpine or Markleeville, and loop around to the back side of Mt. Hamilton through Modesto. Once again, better in the summer.

    This time of year, I would recommend camping down the coast near Big Sur. As long as there is no storm, winter is the best time of year, because there is no fog. That stretch of Hwy 1 is one of my favorite rides.:ricky

    FYI: I just found this:
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=538543&page=2

    It is a tent space thread that lists people who will let you camp in their yard or stay in an extra bedroom. Different pages have different states/countries.
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  5. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    Wow just looked at Big Sur on maps what a beutiful ride! Quite a bit of it is just a highway and its pretty easy to git there with maps and avoid highways that way I can ride all the highway parts of 1. That looks like a real good ride, probably try and do it over the break.

    And yea it'll be mighty cold, 20s pretty cold! Yea with enough blankets in a tent and cloths I imagine it could be done though.

    Wow and thanks thats nice the thread where you can stay at places people have, thats real cool, nice of them to do that it'll save a lot of us riders lots of cash when traveling, I mean seriously hotels are SO expensive. Like next summer me and my dad and planning on Sturgis and lots of other trips before that, but those hotels are just so expensive at well over $50 a night, its like WTF? If we done a 2 week trip, thats 14X$50+ $700!:eek1 I mean I have a little money but that'll blow it all! And thats one trip! Plus gas sure ain't cheap! So camping out and things like that is a good way to cut down on cost! I mean I just love the idea of touring on bikes, seems like such freedom, not having to go home or nothin for a while! Just your bike and the open road, what fun!

    But thanks I like your ideas these look like some real good rides.
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  6. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    If you have a camera, I hope you'll take some pics of Hwy 1 to post here. It has been a while since I've been there.

    Watch your speed on Hwy 1, by the way. There are usually lots of CHP keeping tourists in check. A speeding ticket at this stage of the game will wipe out your budget on insurance and fines.
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  7. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    tons of roads in the santa cruz hills.
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  8. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    I know I ain't got no ticket yet but I will be pissed if I do! Insurence just too much! I hope the speedlimit isn't 55 MPH the whole way on the non freeway parts too. 55 MPH is seriously just too damn slow if you want to git anywhere any time soon, and is rather boring. I just hate it when they actually enforce a 55 limit! I mean sometimes I think its more for government funding than anything, like some of the long deserted highways here is 55 and little traffic you can see for miles.

    And yea I'll definitly take some pics if I do ride it, I have a Go Pro too but I got to figure it out. It don't have great quality though its not an HD but its good enough. But yea I'll post em when I do. Thanks for the heads up on the CHP, try to keep with 5 of the limit. Usually I don't speed though shouldn't be a huge problem I'll be enjoying the ride anyways.

    eakins yea there are I'll definitly ride lots of there here roads.
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  9. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    So I's done some pretty cool rides so far. Haven't had time to do 1 yet, mainly cause of the limited daylight, it gets dark at like 4:30 so it wouldn't be a fun ride, it'd be all rushed. Probably just wait until I got my full license, it'll be easier to just hop on it and cruise.

    But, I have one question. And I do have some pics of other rides I'll be posting later.

    Question is, I have had a couple wierd incidents.

    So, any of Y'all know 156? Going towards watsonville, it merges onto 101. Now right in front of where it merges on, 101 becomes a highway, I don't THINK there are any "end freeway" signs but there is a "begin freeway" on the other side right after the ramp, meaning it was not a freeway and has become one. And not far ahead there is cross traffic, so I doubt it is.

    Anyways, so this is what I thought. So yestarday I planned to take 156 to 101 and then to the part of 1 that is not a freeway to moss landing. BUT, right where 156 becomes 156/101, there was a sign saying "freeway entrance"! I thought fuck! What is this a freeway or not? So decided not to test my luck and backed the bike up the damn hill and turned around!:dood

    Anyways, I ride back home and look on google maps. Apparently, that on RAMP from 156 is colored as a freeway! BUT, the road right in front of it is a highway!:huh Any ideas? Is it just the ramp a freeway? Or whats up?


    Second, I decided to take 129. The section of 101 through part of gilroy and a little of Hollister is not a freeway. There is a sign that says "end freeway" in gilroy a little before Gavlin Collage. So I took Santa Tressa, and got onto 101. It is not a freeway here, there is a stop sign and no unramp, just a stop sign. So I got on, and was cruising. Now when I was driving a couple weeks ago in a car right on the ramp to get off onto 129 there is a sign saying "Motor Driven Cycles, Bicycles, and Pedestrians MUST exit here". So I thought cool, I guess after this it becomes a freeway, right? So I can just get off here and take 129. Well, I was on my bike, and 1 exit before 129 there is a sign saying "begin freeway"!:huh WTF? Well how come them sign says for us to exit there? So its ok for a person to bicycle there on whats technokily a freeway or what? And there is NO fuckin way to get off before that "begin freeway sign"! There is a exit a little in front it about 1/4 mile from the 129 exit, so I decided to exit there. So I did, and there is 2 roads, 1 on each side of the freeway. 1 road to the right on the right of 101 goes to some park of some sort, if you go left on it it goes to some sort of camping area. On the left side of 101 [you go over the bridge], there is a trailor park [residential area I believe] to the right, and to the left on that road there is a small housing area. I THINK they are residential as well, maybe they was cabins or something for rent? Doubt it though, because there was shit in the yards and stuff, and looked like a neighborhood.

    Now as Y'all may know, when a Freeway is built alongside a residential area, well by law either the residents must be evicted, OR a road must be built connecting them so it is possible for them to get somewhere without interstate travel. There was no such road, as hard as I looked they was all dead ends. Also, I noted right on 101 I could see a ways past them houses a sign saying "end freeway", so technikely that there is a freeway. Also the on ramps all say "freeway entrance". This was the only possible way to get out of that there area! They literally FORCE you onto the freeway. There is absolutly NO way to get out of it, and before 129 NO signs saying exit here for us that can't do freeway! Absolutly NO warning! WTF?:huh



    I mean they take that shit SERIOUSLY here in Califuckina! If they get you violating any of the 3 terms, you lose yer permit for 6 months, as well as yer drivers license is suspended for 6 months!:eek1 Thats 1st offense, and under ANY circumstances I believe. If the officer is cool, he may allow you to push yer bike off the freeway, but legally he is NOT allowed to let you continue violating the law, or he can get in trouble, and Y'all know how cop cars have cameras and all that shit. I don't blame the police, its just a dumb fuckin law that doesn't suprise me one bit living here in CA. But thats why I do NOT want to risk it! So any ideas on whats up with this stupid system? If CA is trying as hard as is possible to make it a PITA to have a motorcycle permit, they's geting an A++ with extra credit!:deal
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  10. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    No ideas?

    I'm considering just going to the CHP station with a map, I'm sure they'd know, I just don't want to push my luck.
    #10