Minnesota to the Ocean, a solo bro's adventure.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by TwinCitiesRider, Aug 15, 2018.

  1. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    One more day of work until I depart on my 4000 miles journey. I was so giddy to get going, I already loaded my bike after performing a full service. Not only was this a coping mechanism to calm me down, but now Friday before the sun comes up I can just hop on and go. I definitely didn't want to go through my typical first trip day ritual of frantically tossing things together and still leaving late. So far this is the best I've felt before a long MC trip. I'll give a quick summery of my plan here as well to help you all determine if this is a thread you want to watch. I'll be leaving Minneapolis, MN heading to the Olympic Coast in Washington State. I'm going to stop at as many National Parks as possible along the way. I intend to camp for free most nights at dispersed spots, except for a few pay sites and one night at a hotel to shower and charge my stuff. I'll be doing this journey on my 2011 Ninja 650r. Most riding will be pavement as it is a sport touring bike, but I will treat it like an ADV bike to get to campsites. Surprisingly it's not bad off road, I just have to constantly consider the fact I'm playing chicken with my oil filter and headers and respect the bike's limitations. Now I need to get ready for one more 16 hour shift at work and I'll be on my way, and updating as I go.

    Attached Files:

    #1
  2. chudzikb

    chudzikb Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2016
    Oddometer:
    1,264
    God speed sir!
    #2
    TwinCitiesRider likes this.
  3. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    10,233
    Location:
    Fort Smith, Arkansas
    Enjoy!
    #3
  4. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Guys need some advice ASAP. I decided to look at the weather to generally have an idea what to be ready for. Well turns out that entire portion of our beautiful nation is on fire. Smoke doesn't complement photography and camping very much. Luckily I have no one to meet in the northwest, I'm going solo, and I'm happy to ride anywhere as long as I'm riding so switching the plan is no biggie. I looked at the smoke map of the United States and determined the Southwest (Utah, Arizona, ect) is clear. Now I've Never been there before and have no clue what the weather is like this time of year, just as I had no clue the northwest had a fire season. Here's the advice I need, should I go Northwest or Southwest? Will I be better off with the smoke in the northwest or desert temps in the southwest?
    #4
  5. WilsoDRZ

    WilsoDRZ Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2015
    Oddometer:
    120
    Location:
    Eugene, OR
    I rode the southwest early June and it was HOT at lower elevations like Flagstaff, most of NM, moab, bryce canyon. The grand canyon north rim and Telluride area were awesome. I was attempting mostly off road solo and the heat makes it even more risky and uncomfortable. I'd say stick to cooler weather and nicer mountain scenery and roads over less smoke in the southwest. The fires shouldn't reroute pavement as much as back country. Either way, you'll make memories, just ride smart!
    #5
  6. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    I viewed some webcams from today at a few parks I Intended to visit. Thick smoke is at a lot of them. So despite the title of this thread, I will not be going anywhere near an ocean. Instead, I'm hitting the desert. Going to head southwest tomorrow at the break of dawn.
    #6
  7. Fast1

    Fast1 Twisted Throttle

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    4,140
    Location:
    Bridge over Troubled Water
    I also postponed my trip to the northwest of the USA. In fact, Glacier Park "Going to the Sun" road is even closed due to fire in the west side of the park. Read that over 100 active fires were prevalent in BC too.

    Glacier

    [​IMG]

    Seems that CO and the higher elevations in UT, NM, AZ and NV might be the best at this point however there are still fires burning in CA.

    Pretty sad to see this nation plagued with fires have have the beauty burned.

    Good luck with your re-route.
    #7
  8. chudzikb

    chudzikb Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2016
    Oddometer:
    1,264
    I was out in Glacier and Yellowstone 2 weeks ago, all was well. But, they were saying real dry and were scared to death of lightning and the fires that it causes. Sadly, their warnings came true. I feel rather lucky that we got to hike both places and were not impeded by fires. Come on rain!
    #8
    TwinCitiesRider likes this.
  9. BSUCardinalfan

    BSUCardinalfan Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Oddometer:
    711
    Location:
    Atlanta OTP - Acworth/Kennesaw
    Colorado! Utah. I'm leaving 4 weeks from today.
    #9
    TwinCitiesRider likes this.
  10. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Well 830 miles later i made it to Brush Colorado. As im writing this I'm enjoying a well earned beer amd cigar. Met three interesting people already on this journey. Currently there is a dirtbike meet next to the campsite, but shouldnt have any problem sleeping after the long haul today.

    Attached Files:

    #10
    fasttortoise likes this.
  11. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    So now for the second time I've thrown a retaining clip on the masterlink of my chain. I think i may have the plate pressed a bit much allowing them to wiggle loose. Going to put some liquid gasket on the clip today after im dome riding to hopefully help it out. Im down to only one spare master now also, if this doesnt work ill redo the whole link.
    #11
  12. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Ok so i crossed Colorado today on Interstate 70. Suprisingly this interstate is super scenic. Also shoutout to bucketboy on advrider. I passed him multiple times on my way to my first campsite. Completely by random he showed up at my campsite later that day. Who woulda guessed id meet someone from the forum completely by chance. So about the most exciting thing today was testing the ninja's sand capability getting to my campsite at Rabbit Valley recreational area on the colorado boarder. It wasn't preaty, but it was fun! Ne ways enjoying some beer, but mostly water at this awesome desert campsite!

    Attached Files:

    #12
    CPTBorg likes this.
  13. keithg

    keithg Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2007
    Oddometer:
    415
    Location:
    PRESCOTT VALLEY AZ
    Keep it up!
    #13
  14. RJ44

    RJ44 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2015
    Oddometer:
    331
    Location:
    Thunder Bay, Ontario
    Enjoy the trip. Ride safe.

    Rob
    #14
  15. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Hey sorry for the late update didnt have service at my last camp. I spent the day at arches national park. Absolutely beautiful! The hike to delicate arch was a bear, but totally worth it! Ended up canping at the big bend! Currently sending this update from the island in the sky in canyon lands national park!

    Attached Files:

    #15
  16. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Shout out to holckster for the advice really appreciate the tips. So today was wonderful until it wasn't. The Canyon Lands were beautiful and fun riding. The riding to the grand canyon where I'm now was beautiful also until the Arizona desert in the Navajo Nation. I might have just got that impression as an alarming event happened. I was thirsty counting the miles until the next gas station (I know it was dumb not to have a reserve water supply). While cruising at 80 mph my bike started bogging like it was out of fuel. I pulled over and the second I stopped it dies. About a minute later i tried to start it, and it fired up perfectly. Assuming vapor lock I let the bike cool. I figured I was overheating so it was possible my bikes FI did as well? I'm not sure, regardless once it cooled It got me to the Grand canyon area moving at a conservative 70 mph to be safe. It's been running perfectly normal since. Not sure what to think about this, so any input would be awesome. I think I'm just going to press on though and see what happens. I checked all my fluids and they were good, it didn't seem like an electrical issue either as my power was still on after it died. On a positive note I'm at a hotel with wifi so here is some of my pics from my sony a6000!

    Attached Files:

    #16
  17. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    The bike did awesome today, but utahs weather did not. I hit waves of thunderstorms but handled them like lutenant dan. Made it to Zion and stripped my rain gear to fully dry off. I accoplished that only to ride through the park and get hammered again without my gear. Going to have to rain gear up tomorrow as well to get to bryce canyon.

    Attached Files:

    #17
  18. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Well decided to run from the weather. I crossed utah yesterday with the goal to camp at Uinta National Forest. I didn't plan to repeat my mistakes before and had my raingear on most the way. I hit two storms crossing utah and stayed dry and cozy. When i came to the base of the Uinta mountains a dark storm cloud sat upon it. Unwilling to let the weather stop my adventure I rode up into the downpour into the mountains. I managed get camp set up in the rain while maintaining a dry environment within my tent. Then the hail came. It was wonderful hearing the forces of nature beat on my tent unable to reach me while I enjoyed some tennesse whiskey. All was good until midnight when water started coming in through the floor. Had to run out and make a diversion ditch. It worked wonderfully and i slept great the rest of the night. Btw thid post is a little behind as i havent had service.

    Attached Files:

    #18
    Fast1 and Loadtoad101 like this.
  19. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    After the night in the mountains i decided to head down as i wanted to update my folks where i was. I made it to green river wyoming and found a fantastic dispersed spot up wildhorse rd. I had a mild gravel road to climb but found a beautiful spot overlooking the highway. It was super winy, but used my bike as a wind block. An additional bo us to this was i got to wake up to this beautiful sight!

    Attached Files:

    #19
  20. TwinCitiesRider

    TwinCitiesRider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2016
    Oddometer:
    100
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    With days to spare i decided to get closer to home to one of my favorite motorcycle playgrounds. The black hills. Wyoming is a big state tho so i stopped at devils tower for tonight after crossing most the state. Tomorrow i plan to go hunting for some twisty roads and off road adventure in the black hills nearby.

    Attached Files:

    #20