Olympic Peninsula to the Canadian Rockies

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by wetwider, May 19, 2019.

  1. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    I'm about to do much of this little Canada romp again. First a bit of background:

    Six years ago upon turning 70 I thought I should do something immature so I jumped on my `03 Triumph Bonneville and rode from the top of the Olympic Peninsula south through eastern Oregon to near Austin, Nevada, then north through Idaho, Montana, Glacier National Park, British Columbia… a little over 3,000 miles.
    thumb_P1010020_1024.jpeg
    That was fun so I did it again the next year, a different route through Wyoming, the Grand Tetons & Yellowstone.
    thumb_P1010017_1024.jpeg
    The following year it was just a little Oregon coast ride:
    thumb_P1010010_1024.jpeg
    The next summer it was a week with pals, riding my trusty little Super Sherpa over parts of Idaho & Montana outback, fording streams, following ranch roads & cow trails:
    thumb_P1010032_1024.jpeg

    To defy turning 74, in mid-July `17 I headed straight for Canada, just the Bonnie & me. That's the subject of this tale.

    After a ferry ride, a sprint up an island & over a bridge, I was northbound on the mainland’s Highway number 9. Two-lane lovers bound for western Canada from the Seattle area take note: State Highway 9 from Sedro Wooly to Canada at Abbotsford is pure delight. Farm land, gently rolling hills, great vistas, across creeks, snow-patched mountains rising over yonder, little weekday traffic, and in the small community of Van Zant is a great country store/deli where a pretty woman with a pretty smile makes excellent custom sandwiches, and there's shade outside for sitting. This is a great route to adjust to the quiet life of the back-road, to change the air in your head, .

    At the Canadian border I fell in with four Brazilians bound for Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. We’d all pulled over to dig out passports & remove helmets before getting in line for the border guards. `Neat guys, one on a big Honda dual-sport, two on Harleys, one on something I didn’t recognize, none with expensive shiny stuff, each with a spare tire lashed on the back. Clearly 50-mission bikes. One said in excellent English they’d flown with their machines from Brazil to Miami, ridden across the Gulf states, south to the Panama Canal, then north through Central America and up our Pacific Coast. After Alaska, they were bound for Canada's Maritimes & New England, then back to Miami and home.

    I joined the line for the border first, and motioned them through ahead of me. It was only right.

    Big wildfires roamed western British Columbia this hot dry July, spreading tragedy, closing highways. Plans to head north to higher elevations and cooler air before turning east had to change: I rode Canada’s Highway 3 instead and zig-zagged east closer to the border ~ delightful but warm on fast curving & hilly two-lane. Like most Canadian highways, 3 has smooth, clean pavement, predictable curves, generally good sight-lines and little traffic. It was easy to ride swiftly, smoothly clipping apexes.

    A ‘new’ Triumph Bonneville may not be a bike many would choose for touring but it’s a dandy steed if you want to scamper over the earth but not ride a crotch-rocket nor plod on anything big & heavy. A number of sport-touring bikes would work ok but I like my bikes to look like a motorcycle, not a big insect or small buffalo.

    I’ve been riding since age 14, 62 years this Spring. My taste in bikes was perhaps set by my first, a Harley Hummer bought so I double my paper route, kept hidden from the folks in a friend's barn. Touring well on the Bonnie required improving her suspension, helping her breath easier, raising the gearing, lowering tripple-clamps, changing bars. Cheap by nature, I improved the comfort with a piece of memory-foam under sheepskin (total cost less than $30). That extended non-stop saddle-time from an hour to three and made possible a 500-mile final day on this year’s 1,400 mile run.

    Not many photos for a bit - I got carried away with the ride and forgot to shoot `em!

    Day Two: The the gas tap was on ‘reserve’ many miles in yesterday’s dusk. Plumb tuckered, I left fueling `til morning and bedded down by a river just before the tiny town of Hedley (east of Princeton on Hwy. 3). Early in the morning I eased into the little town to its only gas station. The big front window reflected two old pumps and behind the glass was a sign: “Closed Wednesdays.”

    It was Wednesday.

    Too far to another station in any direction, I asked an old man walking if he knew anyone who might have a gallon to sell. He pointed: “Go up that street to the sign says “coffee,” go in and ask for Rick.” It was a modest two-story building, the senior center. Rick wasn’t there. Another guy heard me telling my woe to the hostess, a twinkly woman, white hair in a bun, flowered apron. “Come on,” the man said, emptying his cup as he rose from the communal table.

    On his dually Dodge’s flatbed was a 5-gallon jug of no-ethanol regular. `Said he has a tanker-truck deliver in bulk to his ranch. I poured roughly three gallons into the Bonnie, paid him in Toonies (Canadian $2 coins), took some kidding and hit the road through wispy low fog under a deep blue sky and a teasing sun. Soon I was dancing the two-lane again, singing in my helmet, making up words that morning to the tune Blue Bayou:

    I’m riding on today
    Come what may
    On Blue Highways
    Where the curves are fun
    And the paving’s fine
    On Blue Highways ...

    That’s the clean verse.

    Half an hour east of bustling Castlegar, I found a well-kept mom & pop motel on the edge of Salmo, B.C., a dandy little town. Black leathers in summer desert heat called for a short day (much of lower British Columbia, eastern Washington & Oregon in summer is technically desert with daytime heat scarce rain, cool nights, but no cactus).

    I’m not sure it’s ok to mention businesses by name here, but this place deserves it: The motel at Salmo was a fine surprise - The Sal Crest Motel - a neat & clean mom & pop, a true motorcyclist’s place with a pay phone in a hollow tree, a large paved covered area between its one-story wings of rooms ~ out of the weather parking for bikes with tables & chairs and a barbecue nearby. On the lawn out front is a sign: “Hog Wash.” That's a bike-size concrete pad in the grass next to a hose bib, a coiled hose & adjustable nozzle. That evening, unasked, unseen, the motel owner placed next to my bike a big bucket, a bottle of mild soap, clean, soft rags and fresh towels!

    Across the street is a good steakhouse-bar made of logs, and Salmo is a genuine old-West town established a century or two ago by logging and mining interests and a railroad. It's tidy & natural, not yet gentrified, refreshing. A small cafe serves robust healthy food; there's a pub, an old hotel and happy, creative inhabitants. It’s at a stage my town enjoyed in the `70s when dominated by boatbuilders & musicians, innovative sorts ~ before realtors, speculators and the boring began arriving wanting Aspen-by-the-Sound.

    Day Three: Awoke to rain of course ~ I'd washed my bike. By nine, the roads were dry and I was off, singing Roy Orbison again. Sorta.

    Riding through the town of Creston, a couple dozen Hells Angeles, all wearing “colors,” riding in a tight pack, swarmed onto the highway from the left just as I came along. I moved over, made room and held my pace ~ and was absorbed into the pack with a couple of manly nods. I can say I rode with the Angels.

    For several miles I was in the rocking chair with those guys, feeling out of place but we wuz makin' knots, mon, passing cars seemingly at-will, often all of us at once, pack intact. All were good riders - a good thing with hardly any room between bikes moving fast. Motorists gave us room. Buicks and motorhomes pulled over so we could thunder by. We were making better time than I would’ve alone, except through the curves. Coming up to a doddering motorhome, two Angles shot around it, then braked and slowed the elephant so the rest of us could blast past as a group.

    It must have been a sight - all those big dark Harleys & burly guys riding low & loud, a sea of black helmets ~ and in their midst this shiny little Triumph and a guy sitting tall with a bright white helmet.

    But the novelty wore thin with the noise and the concentration required to ride so close ~ and I hated wasting beautiful curves hemmed-in by bikes sparking parts on the pavement with the slightest lean. When we slowed for traffic entering a settlement I pulled off with a wave into a gas station, then grinned at the experience while topping off my tank.

    Canadians have the reputation of being ‘nice’ so I was confused. I’d never considered there were outlaw bikers up there. It seemed an oxymoron. I later read there was a big Hells Angels gathering in Calgary that next weekend celebrating 30 years since they took over another Canadian gang. Some 500 Angels were riding in from all over Canada, the paper said. A cop interviewed claimed no trouble was anticipated. He cited previous peaceful Angels meets in Calgary. In Canada even bad-asses are nice?

    The cop must’ve realized he'd hurt the Angels reputation ~ he added they had been busted for assault and drugs, just somewhere else.

    Canada 93 north from Cranbrook started out with light traffic, more curves and gentle hills, but soon became mostly straight & flat for miles up a beautiful river valley below the Rockies’ western massif. That once-bucolic scene is blighted now with new upscale resort after resort after resort, golf courses, pretentious restaurants, clusters of trophy homes, shopping mall towns full of Audis.

    Tired, with night fast approaching, I reluctantly took a cabin in an overpriced resort in the town of Radon, a tourist-milking town famous for its hot springs ~ also a gateway to the Kootenay, Banff and Yoho National Parks or preserves.

    There are many neat things to do and see all over B.C. ~ zip- lines, fishing, great little museums, excellent hiking. The provincial government has well-marked Information stations near many towns where volunteers kindly explain activities & sights in the area. This being a ride-report, I’ll stay with the bike.

    Day Four: Just out of Radium on 93, there’s this skinny road cut with a curve in it. In-your-face rock walls tower from the edges of narrowed pavement. Once through, the parks begin and the crowds vanished. Apparently it’s not the same showing off your new outfit to an elk.

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    The wilderness north of Banff was my lose destination, past Lake Louise, along the Icefields parkway, maybe to Jasper. Icefields is well-named. Hot as it was getting there, in the mountains it was colder than a jilted debutant.

    A stop in the park: This old crank-it-to-reset-it pump worked! It gave my Bonnie gas:
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    A stop on the way to higher ground:
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    Twenty miles of freezing my parts on the Icefields Parkway was all I could handle. It was tough giving up the scenery, chasing a couple guys riding Ducatis con brio through the twisties, briefly, but the damp cold was getting serious. I'd left electric gloves and jacket-liner home, thinking it would be merely cool up here. I retreated to the town of Lake Louise for hot chocolate but didn’t stop ~ the town was writhing with competitive consumers around gridlocked traffic. Instead I slalomed down the mountain on the Trans-Canadian Highway past amazing geologic displays writ-large and stopped in the tilted town of Field for soup & paninini.

    Field was a steam-train watering town gone terminally precious but the food in a local’s cafe was excellent. Satisfied & thawed, I meditated astride my ride while an endless uphill freight train banged slowly through town blocking the only way out. Released at last, there came more glorious country curves, tunnels, fast bends, easily dispatched traffic down to the town of Golden, and through Canada’s Glacier National Park to the little city of Revelstoke.

    Had I been smarter, I’d have taken Canada 23 south out of Revelstoke, Canada 6 to Vernon on Canada 97. That's a longer, much more rewarding ride, I’m told. There are lots of great B.C. roads. I have to go back! I stayed instead on the Trans-Canada to the town of Sicamous thinking I’d camp there, but the area was overrun with "baggers in town for a big burnout,” said the hostess of an overflowing campground. Indeed! Greater metropolitan Sicamous was packed with young guys on baggers awaiting a wet t-shirt contest. I rode a half-hour more to the town of Salmon Arm. By then I was one tired old dude.

    Of course salmon don’t have arms. I stayed in a place just out of town anyway.

    Day Five: `Got up at 4 a.m. and on the bike by five to haul-hiney south on 97, entering the `States between Osoyoos, B.C., and Oroville, WA. It was a crisp ride that grew warm by the time I entered Osoyoos, and hot as I ran west on Washington Highway 20 streaking for altitude in the North Cascades, hoping to get high before it got really hot!

    Good plan, but… . The oven-dry tourist towns of Twisp and Winthrop on the desert side of the mountains were bursting, people packed like cordwood standing on-end - and the traffic! It was Saturday, hot enough to combust concrete. A big-deal music festival was happening on a ranch west of Winthrop, but it seemed everybody had come into town. A local directed me to backroads around most of the long-stopped traffic in temperature above 100.

    I feared for my air-cooled engine but managed to keep moving following his directions ~ then had to creep & cook past the festival farm before breaking free at last, free at last! And my romp began anew over a motorcycle nirvana ~ the North Cascades Highway. I banked hard on perfect pavement through sweepers, frolicked through esses, grinned, shouted, sang and dove for apexes. If my trail were drawn in thin air it would look a bird rising in a series of gusty thermals. The road climbed with light traffic through clear, clean, ever-cooler air until the jacket got zipped.

    When I reached a small town up there with motels, all were full, the campgrounds jammed. It seemed too close to home to stop further on and it was only mid-afternoon. After an alligator burger (really, she said it’s alligator!) in the settlement of Marblemount (it did taste like chicken), I slipped down the mountain through more lovely sweepers, through banked esses, past an old glacier or two and a couple waterfalls. Occasionally there was mountain on one side, nothing on the other.

    Working through urban splatter near I-5 was tedious, but then came a sea-breeze across commercial tulip fields, then Whidbey Island, a Puget Sound ferry and I was almost home. Five hundred miles that day, a zillion curves on a Bonneville; no windshield, no GPS, no stereo, no ABS or cruise-control.

    I was out of Orbison tunes but I could still walk!

    Maybe 74’s ain’t that old. Seventy-six doesn’t feel so bad ~ I’m headed back up that-a-way, maybe next week.

    - 30 -
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  2. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Really enjoyed that. Thanks. Gives me something to look forward to. (from a much younger 67 year old)
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  3. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    Thanks Dave,
    Enjoy your ride! Sixty-seven make you a pup, but I understand - I wondered back then how much longer I could ride. `Turns out I still don't know. Luck of the genes & fate, I reckon. May you have it too!
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  4. Mofrid

    Mofrid Been here awhile Supporter

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    Great RR ... thanks!
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  5. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    Thanks Mofrid. `Tis a ride I can recommend without reservation. I'm planning to do a bunch of it again after Memorial Day herds get out of the way, and run some of the little roads I missed. The start is not too far north of Jefferson State and from there to here's a mighty nice ride, as you may know.
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  6. bobw

    bobw Harden the phuck up

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    Excellent ride and very fun to read! Being another pup in his 60s, I love seeing an old guy :hide :clap kicking arse on two wheels when so many of my advanced age'd riding buddies seem to have decided to become old in their minds and no longer ride and/or go no further than a couple hours locally. I am forwarding your trip report to a couple to shame them :rofl

    Safe riding!

    Cheers
    #6
  7. Jedi5150

    Jedi5150 Road Warrior

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    Thanks for sharing that adventure. It made me “homesick”. During the couple years I lived in Alberta and BC, six months of it was in Banff. I went to many of the small, surrounding towns...Field, Golden, Cranbrook, etc. It’s been 26 years since I’ve been in Alberta and the interior of BC, and long past due for me to return there. Your ride report brought back many fun memories.

    And I tip my hat to your adventurous spirit. My father was still running marathons at your age, and you’re out there doing 500 mile days on secondary roads, on a Bonneville! So much of “age” is a mental state.
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  8. squonker

    squonker Stupid is the new norm

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    Great writing, great riding! :thumb
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  9. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    `Appreciate the comments, gents!

    `Am scheduled to take off Tuesday to do some of this ride again, altered to include great B.C. roads I heard about last trip. Thanks to seeing Jedi5150's photos on his tour of the West report (above on this list somewhere) and the sane reasoning (for a 5150) they'll be treasured later, I'm determined to stop & photograph more. Besides, I'm older now. I may need the rest.

    The plan is to take two or three days from Port Townsend to Selmo, B.C., via the stellar North Cascades Highway again & take a couple nights in the Sal-Crest Motel to day-ride light a couple long loops north of there. Then I'm open to whim ~ maybe go east, down into Idaho & Montana, to Lolo Pass, another great Northwest motorcycle run, then south to follow the Columbia River west before hanging a right for home with a stop to at Mt. St. Helens. Or whatever route strikes the fancy & suits the weather.

    Onward!
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  10. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    The rest of the story ~ so far:

    Tired from hours on the water Monday, I packed and loaded the bike until mine was the only light on in the neighborhood. Then I couldn’t sleep so I made Tuesday a day of rest.
    Refreshed Wednesday morning, I got underway:
    upload_2019-6-1_0-42-29.png


    `Caught a pretty early ferry across Puget Sound from Port Townsend, rode up Whidbey Island & east on Washington's Hwy. 20 out of Mt. Vernon, which is apparently always traffic-clogged for miles. I fetched up behind some clown on a pretty two-tone green Harley who wasn't the guy you want to follow. He kept slowing down and speeding up on the crowded two-lane. Cars would get way ahead, then he'd goose it, maybe to hear his loud pipes, maybe just being hateful. I slowed to put more room between us and got tailgated. Then he slowed still more, abruptly, so I did too and still nearly ran up beside him to keep the pickup behind from driving over me. Green Harley guy was riding lane-left and I don’t generally pass on the right, but about then a hole opened in oncoming traffic, so I gunned it past on the left and cruised up nearer the car ahead in my lane, glad to get rid of him - and then he roared by on my right, missing me by about an inch.

    I wanted to tear his head off and stuff it where the sun never shines, but I lagged back a bit and pulled off instead to ride a parallel road, rejoining the highway half a mile later. I never saw him again.

    Several miles on, out of the congestion & most of the traffic, I cruised easy through gorgeous countryside along the Skagit River, mountains in the distance, sun shining, the road beginning a gentle climb.

    Some 50 miles east from Mt. Vernon is Marblemount, a little settlement perfect for an early lunch. I squeezed the Triumph into a spot at a cafe next to a pair of loaded down GSs and a KLM. More bikes loaded with gear were parked in the lot next door. Inside, tables crowded with happy motorcycle riders, most old too, chowed down before heading over the stellar North Cascades Highway too.

    They were out of there before my brisket arrived. I took my time, gassed up and hit the road to once again joyfully scamper those deservedly famous twisties ~ and wonder if the dark clouds gathering behind the jagged peaks ahead meant rain. This is called Rainy Pass, after all, 4,588’ up at the top surrounded by 9,000’ peaks. I’ve never been rained on in about a dozen crossings, though I was snowed on up there once. The pass is close winters due to snow.

    A couple recent winters did a number on the usually smooth highway. Earth slumps under the pavement made for lumpy curves this spring, but only now & then, or far enough apart I sort of forgot about them, then while cornering hard, there’d be all of a sudden wavy tarmac testing tire-grip & suspension. The rough corners are almost always where the road dips back into a mountain cleft, where winter snow-melt works through the ground pushing its way down to the river. Most of the curves around mountain bellies remain smooth, but the mix made for a little different experience from recent years when the pavement’s been billiard table-smooth, but riding the pass was still big fun.

    About 30 miles from Marblemount, I caught up with half a dozen GS, KTM (and one Gold Wing) riders from the cafe. They were right then getting a passing lane and freedom from behind motorhome. I poured it on and followed them around the barge driven by honored members of the Anti-Destination League, then boy-howdy, those guys were gittin’ it on! What the hell, I said to my triple-clamps ~ I twisted my grip and for several miles with those guys provided clues to each new curve.

    But then the rain came. With the road wet and our visors smeared, we all morphed into little old ladies and I noticed my old boots leak now.

    The rain stopped around Mazama, a small settlement off the highway as it drops into hot, dry Methow Valley where we were cooled by the rain evaporating from our clothes. Soon as we rolled into the old west tourist town of Winthrop, a busy place even on a weekday, the GS guys pulled off and I rode on to the Rocking Horse Bakery where my vintage motorcycle club puts on a little show after we ride the pass in late June, filling a block's worth of curb out front with good old bikes. The coffee & pastries are excellent too, especially after almost 300 miles with just one stop.

    Revived, I rode east about three miles to the tidy & quiet Twin Lakes Campground, pitched my tent near the water and hung my socks on the bike's levers to dry:
    upload_2019-6-1_0-36-5.png

    Up early yesterday, I felt funky sitting in my chair, drinking my first coffee & eating a Clif Bar. It was a beautuful morning and should have been invigorating, but it seemed to take forever to break camp and load the bike. I eased up the road at last and into the town of Twisp for breakfast, then sat on a bench wondering if I was at last too old for this. I’ll be 76 this month, felt pretty good into the winter, but I guess winter's endless cadaver-grey skies that leak and the lethargy from mostly indoor living left me more out of shape than I’ve ever been. In recent weeks I’ve rowed and walked and gained strength, but enough?

    Deciding to ride less than 200 miles in the gathering heat of Eastern Washington, I saddled up and headed out (that’s Old West tourist town talk). I swung left out of town on Hwy. 20 bound for Republic or Kettle Falls. `Figured to leave getting to Salmo, B.C., for the next day, still debating whether I was fit enough to continue. Should I take a motel, or maybe turn around and ride home?

    Pondering this as I rode may be why I only glanced at the temporary Highway Department sign when my road turned left.

    What did that thing say? I turned around & rode back to check. It said my road was closed in 20 miles. Damn! That meant a 65-mile detour down to the town of Peteros & back up U.S. 97. `Might be an omen, I said to m’self. I rode back to a store for lemonade and sat in some shade to think about it. I drank a large lemonade and about half a gallon of water, decided I could do this ride anytime and there were some neat things about to happen in my town I’d miss if I continued. A good ride was worth missing that stuff, but a mediocre one?

    I headed back toward Rainy Pass.

    In the hot Methow valley I left my jacket half unzipped, vents open. Partway up the pass I stopped in cool air to zip it all closed and take a leak ~ and realized I felt pretty good! Damn! I was just dehydrated! I’d ridden the mountain yesterday drinking only coffee, had coffee when I got to Winthrop, only a little water before hitting the sack, coffee this morning in camp, coffee with breakfast - and just as I decided to bag the trip, I drank a bunch of water. No wonder!

    By then I was 35 miles closer to home. The decision felt made. I’d be riding back over this way next month with my vintage bike club. My ass was dying now after just a few miles thanks to not having one anymore, plus my memory foam under the sheepskin has lost its vigor. Also I hate my LS-2 helmet which whistles and creates amazingly loud wind noise. It's cost me a bunch of hearing ability, my reward for going cheap on the brain-bucket, mostly so I could leave it on the bike when I go in someplace. Plus it tends to ride up on my head. Tomorrow I buy a Shoei. Hauling it into restaurants with me will be a drag, but my wife can’t talk any louder. I’ll also replace the memory foam under my other end.

    The world looked brighter the higher I climbed through the pass under a clear morning sky, hardly anybody else on the road. I promised I’d stop and take more photos but again I was having too much fun. I retraced my path through Mt. Vernon and across the tulip fields, back down Whidbey Island to the ferry landing where two BMW R100RSs and a R100RT, good ol’ airheads, waited with their Canadian riders, three guys nearly my age. They were on a several-day ramble down the Pacific Coast - nice guys, long-time riders & good buddies. Neat guys with which to take a boat and ride a few miles.

    So the test ride was kind of a bust, but not completely. Both ways the pass was fun, the campground dandy, and at 76, almost, I’m not too old after all. I just need to hydrate and take photos. The Colorado ride? I’m still thinking about it. Maybe just down small roads through Oregon’s coast range instead this year, into California near Crescent City and on south, head over into to the Sierras & U.S. 395 for the return, making the turn east before reaching San Francisco, seeing as there’s no there there anymore.

    - 30 -
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  11. bobw

    bobw Harden the phuck up

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    Sounds like a great run regardless and thanks for the tip on the bakery! Enjoy sorting your gear and getting ready for the next trip and if that one is ridden the full course or something shortened once again it will still be better than sitting at home watching golf on TV while waiting to get old..........

    Cheers
    #11
  12. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    `Just re-read my last section & apologize for all the typos!

    Thanks Bobw for the kind comments, and where are you? Those don't look like the Blue Ridge Mountains (great riding region!) in your avatar - more like ours or the Rockies, Tetons, somewhere west.
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  13. bobw

    bobw Harden the phuck up

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    The photo is from my AK trip in 2018. I'm still in the foothills, Western NC and while I love these friendly old mountains your corner of the continent is calling me more and more! I've had four good trips up your way (to AK was the first last year) and feel like I've barely scratched the surface. Headed back in 2020 for more PNW and more zigzagging through the Western Provinces and AK too. As I noted above, I'm a good ten years your Jr. and totally admire and appreciate your riding and adjusting to the birthday count so as to still enjoy motorcycling. I hope to be as fortunate :beer:beer
    #13
  14. Phipsd

    Phipsd Older but not wiser.

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    This is my part of the world. I've enjoyed the same roads and places many times. I hope to again. Superb writeup.
    #14
  15. Duanob

    Duanob Been here awhile

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    Nice ride report. I am very familiar with all the roads you speak of. I was just up over North Cascades Hwy last weekend after spending a day on Lopez Island. Chuckanut drive at sunset is a site to behold. West side via Oso was a bit on the cool side, Winthrop was 93! Hard to dress for all that temp difference. My wife has relatives all over BC so I've gotten to know it pretty well. If I ever see your blue Bonnie I'll pull you over for a chat!
    #15
  16. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    Hope you do make it out this way next year, Bobw. As nice as riding the Smokeys is, I agree there's no place in North America like the wide open West for a good motorcycle ramble.

    Thanks, Phipsd. I sure like your countryside & look forward to riding it more! You're lucky!

    Please do pull me over if you see me out there Duanob! What are you riding - I'll keep an eye out.

    Our club ride to Winthrop is a couple weeks off, from which I aim to resume my ride to Salmo & ride a loop or two light north of there, then load the bike again & drift east for the long way home. I've got my new Shoei brain-bucket now, which is indeed whisper quiet compared to the jetliner-taking-off-scream of the ol' LS-2, at least on a nekkid bike; I've revamped my seat foam, dug out my Camelback, plus had the birthday ~ I may forget about age for another year. `Tis looking good.
    #16
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  17. Citronodlaren

    Citronodlaren Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 24, 2018
    Oddometer:
    23
    Location:
    Sweden
    One of my best trips is driving on the west coast of Öland, a large island in the Baltiic sea, it belongs to Sweden. Itś not a IMG_0737.JPG IMG_0744.JPG IMG_0751.JPG IMG_0764.JPG long journey, takes a couple of hour or so, but it can be done in different ways and it is mainly loose gravel of lime stone. It is very arid, kind of semi dessert. I never grow tired of it. It is a humble trip but I want to share some photos with you anyhow.
    #17
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  18. Duanob

    Duanob Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2015
    Oddometer:
    193
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    For sure! I met a lot of Triumph riders over this weekend. Something about euro bikes that is a common thread.

    Oso Slide pic. This is what my ride looks like when travelling.

    MG Breva750.jpg
    #18
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  19. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2016
    Oddometer:
    112
    Location:
    northwest
    That was a hell of a tragic slide! Funny, I didn't notice it right away it for looking at your Guzzi, but then I always notice MGs and yours is mighty nice, Duanob! If our trails cross I'll be sure to holler. I'm looking at the sky & forecasts for the next few days, again packed & ready to ride over the pass tomorrow with the vintage club, riding around over there Saturday & maybe longer if weather & the old bones seem ok.

    `Hoping for no more than sprinkles. I don't mind riding in rain all that much (with rain gear on) but somehow hesitate to start out in it.

    Happy trails!
    #19
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  20. Duanob

    Duanob Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2015
    Oddometer:
    193
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    Thanks I appreciate it. I used to really be into restoring old Hondas but I got to the point where I would rather ride than wrench anymore. The Breva is a very comfortable ride. My ass, shoulders, wrists, etc. never got sore the entire weekend. I'm happy with the purchase. It's not the most powerful machine when passing at higher elevations going up hill but it does keep me honest!

    I hear you, the rain doesn't bother me once I am out and about but if it's raining at home I usually don't like to ride in it. Something about stupid Seattle drivers! The worse the weather, the worse the driving. I'm sure you've seen it.
    #20
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