Sierra Ride Report 5/02

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Santa, May 15, 2002.

  1. Santa

    Santa Focused on the Future

    Joined:
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    My co-worker, Tony V. and I left South San Francisco at 1 pm Friday 5/10.His
    first adventure tour on his new KLR650. I was ridin the 1150 GS. Sunny
    skies and extremely light traffic. Stopped in Oakley at my house so I could
    gear up. 3pm found us rolling up 160 along the Sacramento river delta.
    Perfect weather and almost no traffic on the road. Took my scenic path
    thru the valley avoiding the traffic lights and
    annoying trucks near Lodi. After a beer/food/fuel stop in Jackson,
    We headed up 88, into the forest trying to ignore the ominous dark grey
    clouds that were ahead.
    Our destination for the night was a small camp located below the Salt
    Springs Res.
    on the Mokelumne river. approx 3500 ft.
    As we climbed the rain began and the temp dropped fast. Ahead was a
    solid wall of grey.Looked bad, real bad. Knowing that Tony had minimal
    clothes and no real rain gear, I pulled over to ask the question, Keep
    goin or backtrack the 10-15 miles to the only camp in the area below the
    weather. In true adventure rider style his words were "let's go for it".
    Onward we went. About a minute later I checked my mirror and no Tony. Shit.
    Found him on the side of the road. Broken shift lever.
    Great. Luckily, as a kid who grew up before the folding shifter became
    popular I was used to the Vise Grip emergency shift mod. Just happened
    to have the same old set of Grips. On they went. At this point we decided
    to head back down 88, camp near Jackson and find someone to weld it up
    on Sat AM. When we arrived at the campsite we found it to be full.
    Seems that all property in the area was fenced and private property. More
    Shit.
    Screw it. Since Tony's KLR was doing so well in one or two gears,
    We decided to just go to Salt springs and wing it. As we climbed
    the sky began to clear. And spirits rose. That is till we hit 4000 ft and
    found that there had been a snow/ice storm. Everything was white. Snow
    in the trees was not melting cause it was so cold.Damn good thing we didn't
    go thru here earlier. Finally we made the turnoff. Just 11 more miles down
    into the canyon and out of the ice. As dark was quickly approaching the
    pressure to locate camp was building. I forgot the instructions like an
    idiot and was paying for it now.
    I could see the camp on the GPS but there was so much detail in this
    area I was unable to locate the road leading there (Topo). 50 yards back I had
    seen a clearing a bit off the road so we camped there. A large fire was
    promptly lit with some of the very ample wood scattered about. The temp
    was actually so mild that I was wearing a t-shirt till very late.Nothing
    like the chilly temps 10 miles up the road. Many beers were drank that
    night. We were greeted by a warm morning and plenty of sun. We laughed
    at the events of last night and made a plan to cross the Carson pass and
    try to find a welder in South Lake Tahoe.We packed and headed out, noting
    the location of the spot as it is a great place to camp.Would hold maybe
    50 or so bikers.
    Crossing the pass was not so bad. Tony had learned to shift in a funny
    awkward way so we made good headway to South Lake. Still a bit too cold
    for comfort at elevations above 6000 ft though.
    As we tried auto repair shop after shop we realized that prospects
    looked bleak.
    Till I saw the MIDAS shop. Yeah baby. The guys were on his KLR unbolting
    the remaining part of the shifter before I could even srtike a deal with
    the manager.
    Too cool. A bit of sparks and we were good to go. Tony tipped em well
    to insure warm reception for future bikers.Gotta say, that bike did really
    well in many aspects.
    The broad powerband allowed a wide range of speeds with a minimal amount
    of shifting and the dot knobbies had him really cranked over in the corners.A
    trip to the market for steaks and more beer/liquor and we were rolling
    again.
    Took 205 (kingsbury) over to Nevada, then looped down to 88/89 and south
    to Markleeville and the hot springs there. The camp was mostly empty and
    the springs were remarkably full so we picked a spot and set up camp and
    relax. Same spot that I have camped in many years ago. (#44).
    Later that afternoon we had a good soak to help unwind.You can see
    in the photo how nice this place is. One of the few developed springs that
    I like to visit.
    A perfect afternoon turned into a great night to be camping. Pretty
    mild temps, lots of beer and a large pile of wood kept us up till the wee
    hours laughing and bullshitting.
    Sunday's ride was up and over Hwy 4. Just opened after a long winter.
    This road is one of my favorites. Classic alpine setting. Tight corners
    mean no trailers or motorhomes and the views are spectacular. We just cruised
    and stopped regularly for photos or just to look at the view. At one point
    I was taking a photo, looked down and saw GOLD, Damn!. Picked up a flake.
    It was really gold. It bent in my fingers like a piece of foil! Took one
    of my empty waterbottles and collected a good bit to show the folks back
    home. I think I'll be back as soon as more snow melts.
    Westward, corner after corner till the tall pines gave way to the rolling
    grasslands of the central valley. After a snack at Clements A&W drive
    in we did the reverse trip thru the delta on a golden sunny afternoon.
    Really made me feel good.
    We separated at the 160 bridge knowing that we didn't want to go home
    and responsibility was calling and besides, two weeks till the 49'er rally.
    Someone had said that "The adventure starts when the planning stops".
    So true.
    Images posted in <a href=http://www.advrider.com/Photos/gallery/Sierra-5-02?&page=1>Santa's gallery</a>.
    Santa 5/02
    #1
  2. boyscout

    boyscout sittin' down

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    Nice story Santa. Glad you persisted and made the best of it.

    -BS
    #2
  3. RockyRaccoon

    RockyRaccoon Found:Gideon's Bible Supporter

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    Nice ride report, Santa! Now, where is said Photo Gallery?
    #3
  4. Santa

    Santa Focused on the Future

    Joined:
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    Top o the page. Click on Photo Gallery and I'm in there. Spose I ought to just provide the link.Duh.
    T'was indeed a great ride. Looking forward to the niner and a nice GS ride.
    Santa
    #4
  5. Baldy

    Baldy Founder of ADV Administrator

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  6. Santa

    Santa Focused on the Future

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    thanks for the gallery access!Recently got the camera and I'm still figuring it out. At least the auto mode is foolproof. More good stuff to follow.
    Santa
    #6
  7. Rad

    Rad Done riding

    Joined:
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    Improvise

    adapt

    overcome

    ThatÂ’s what an adventure is about

    Good report
    #7
  8. RockyRaccoon

    RockyRaccoon Found:Gideon's Bible Supporter

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    Nice pics, too, Santa. Let's make it a point to get a group together for a ride around the 49er.

    (PS - I'll show you how to tell gold from fool's gold.:rolleyes )
    #8
  9. Santa

    Santa Focused on the Future

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    Great. Lookin forward to it.
    Santa
    #9
  10. Rad

    Rad Done riding

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    There is a GS ride for advanced GS'ers on Sat at the 49'er.
    #10
  11. RockyRaccoon

    RockyRaccoon Found:Gideon's Bible Supporter

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    Yeah, last year I experienced the official GS ride. Let's just say my normal definition of fun doesn't involve taking a hoard of people into a maze of undefined trails and riding for two hours in a blinding, choking cloud of dust.:nah
    #11
  12. Rad

    Rad Done riding

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    Damn! I was hope'n that it would be a real ride. Lets do our own.
    #12
  13. RockyRaccoon

    RockyRaccoon Found:Gideon's Bible Supporter

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    That's the idea:evil

    Although, we live in hope. They may actually have a good one this year. I don't want to count them out. But I think we could do better with a small group of our own; there's a lot of great country around here.
    #13
  14. AdventurePoser

    AdventurePoser Long timer

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    Awesome ride report, dude!

    Steve
    #14