Well – the story may get longer…

Much to my amazement – and Celia’s shock – I have been allowed out again..

It looks like I may be off to Deadhorse via Gobbler’s Knob!!
Maybe I will be able to have my own “GroundHog Day” even though it’s in the wrong state!!

Travelling again with Chris and Unchained Tours…

Alaska is the ultimate destination for adventure riders and is our signature trip. The locals call it the last frontier and when you are there, you really feel like you are a long way from civilization. The scenery, wildlife and roads will take your breath away.
http://www.ridermagazine.com/travel-features/the-haul-road-a-motorcycle-tour-of-alaskas-dalton-highway.htm/

On this adventure, they will fly the bikes into Anchorage and then ship back from Santa Rosa CA in a secure, fully insured container.

I am taking option 1. Fly in and collect bikes on Saturday 9th July 2016 and ride the Dalton Highway made famous on TV’s Ice Road Truckers. We will ride this road all the way up to Prudhoe Bay which is as far north as you can get in the USA.

 

Aerial of Prudhoe Bay, also known as Deadhorse, on the north coast of Alaska, Beaufort Sea.

Aerial of Prudhoe Bay, also known as Deadhorse, on the north coast of Alaska, Beaufort Sea.

It’s a very tough road to ride and is right at the top of the “Worlds must ride” roads for adventure riders. It will be a challenge (I must get fitter!!) but will give us all memories which really will last a lifetime. Celia is hoping I will be in safe hands here because she MAY be flying out later in the trip???
Not quite our route – we will be going up from Anchorage this time and back on the road shown roughly…

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We take the best and most iconic roads in the USA and Canada on the way down to California and will experience the best scenery these fantastic countries have to offer.

Then a week off and some of the laydees may fly out and join us in San Francisco – Celia is pondering a bike -light week of Napa wine visits, Monterey whale watching , San Fran city tours with about 1 mile a day on the back being her limit… (!!)

 

Then we hook up with Chris again for the Moab trip..

This is a new trip and takes in some of the best and scenic riding in the USA. We will ride some iconic roads such as the Pacific Coast Highway, Hwy 50 “The Lost Highway”, Million Dollar Highway and Bonneville Salt Flats. When you also realise that we will ride through some of the great Canyons in the USA such as Bryce, Zion, Monument Valley, Death Valley and Yosemite, it all adds up to being a superb ride.

 

 

2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 800 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 13 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

9th Sept – a loong day in the woods

This was an odd day – from the zombies (aka pot heads) in the village mid way through the forests – a genuinely odd group shambling like Romero’s characters around a small store… an odd place itself with a railway carriage and an old police car parked up…

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Somehow we missed a shot of the 20′ fly on the roof I have pinched these from Andrew (where was my camera?)

A long day – 450 miles? saw us enter Oregon and and early night…

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8th Sept – First day of new trip!

First proper full day in the saddle today of Lady P after a great week with Charl, but now the real trip starts! And boy, a great ride up Highway 101 to Eureka. The roads are deserted. First official stop of the day was in the Humboldt Redwoods State Park and the drive thru’ Redwood.

You haven’t seen trees till you’ve seen these giants…

 

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Here is Paul chatting to one of the local weed farmers… Humboldt is famous as it is the marijuana capital of America. You can smell it at the roadside and from every other vehicle! It’s legal to grow it if you buy a tag for $20 per plant. Technically, it has to be grown for medical purposes but everyone knows this is just a front. Most of the doctors locally will issue The money it raises builds schools, community centres, fire stations and much more. It’s estimated that it contributes up to a quarter of local GDP! It is rumoured that many of the local businesses will not accept cards – preferring cash as the economy is so reliant on the laundering of weed money!

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You can’t come here without visiting the World Famous drive-thru trees 🙂

It turned out to be only one of the World Famous tree related venues we saw that day!!

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We finished in Eureka – a strange little place…

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with great murals and a cracking micro brewery/restaurant… I celebrated my birthday with a selection of beers…

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7th Sept – PCH & Golden Gates

 

 

 

The day began with a trip to SF and the bridge…

Alcatraz but a stone’s throwDSC00527 Andrew and IDSC00540 The gangDSC00542 Eat your heart out CharlDSC00555

We crossed the bridge and climbed….

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I love this shot… north side of the bridge and a lovely climb upDSC00568

Relaxing @ Jenner. Lovely place on the edge of the PCH

All at Jenner

Mark and jo PCH some great roads herePCH1

Here’s to relaxing times – losing weight is tough you know… Andrew and I getting to know one another. It’s interesting to note that very few of the “group” had ever met before. A few meets for planning (& food) that’s about it…Peter and Andy

Day 4 – Mariposa to Lee Vining

Starting in Mariposa we decided to cross the Tioga Pass Highway (between 6-10,000 ft).

I tried pancakes – yuck, never again!

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Setting off early we had no traffic as we ran for 5 minutes down to Mono Lake proper, what a weird place. The flies are thick here and it hums but that’s mainly because Los Angeles has had it’s water from here since the ’30s and the Lake has dropped 45 feet!

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The last pic shows the view as you climb up on to the Blue Star, a great road with a strange custom of 000’s of stickers from all over the world stuck on the armco.

DSC00386 DSC00391Good news for some – only 102 degrees today!!

Left California and arrived in Nevada to sunshine..
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Basically Nevada is like California with more guns, smoking and lots of casinos – every bar has slot machines in the bar!

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It also has beer in jars!

DSC00425I have been surprised at how much micro-brewing is going on here – CAMRA would be proud of ’em…

 

One last one…DSC00485

 

 

 

Day 2 – Yosemite Part I

The day started in bright sunshine and clear skies..

(I am struggling with wifi speed for the last 2 days – I have loads of pics but cannot upload them 😦  ) – I will catch up
We entered Yosemite Park and I bought an annual pass as it seems the best way…. we will see!

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The first decision was Glacier Point… I am a bit of a geek by trade and for cryptic reasons have always wanted the see Half Dome… The mountain a processor family was named after in the usual tradition…

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After that it was El Capitan – a truly unreal piece of rock…

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At this point I was dying with the heat and we pulled in to fill up on $5.40/gallon  gas (87 RON) and I spotted that even with all the vents wide open, my Badlands Pro jacket/trouser combo was struggling at temps of 106 in the shade….

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We dropped down from the hills into Mariposa, a great little town

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and well worth a visit with plenty of cool bars and hearty restaurants 🙂 Fuel was only $4.29/gallon here for premium but there is no gas in the Park so you fill up where you can when the tank allows 110 miles!!!!!

Day one on the bikes

She ain’t sexy & new but she’s all mine for the week…

A really great favour from a friend of a friend and I have a bike this week… Thank you Uncle Dickie!

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There she is outside Weinerschnitzel – possibly on a par with GreggsIMG_2150Travelling light – I had to buy some undies.. Wait till you see them, Maybe not!!

My riding buddy Charl – just back from the Burning Man Festival, where he ran a 50km in the Black Rock Desert, while I ate Chinese in SF 😀

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Day one

San francisco to Walnut Creek to collect the bike – then down to Patterson and via Raymond on a lovely route, twisty with low hills and an amazing view ( and what a crazy bar!!) a night in Oakhurst. Tomorrow Yosemite!

 

 

 

San Francisco – finally here…

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Arrived yesterday after a delay due to the captain being unwell – I suppose everyone has an occasional right to a duvet day…

 

Anyway – the weather is beautiful in California… I know!
The weather report on TV in the morning made me smile “sadly we won’t exceed 92 degrees today”

They are gutted with 92 down here in the sunny south. I was sweating just walking up and down the San Franciscan hills…

IMG_3736 Another sunny pic… The market area down on the piers… every Saturday they have a farmers market… peaches like footballs!

IMG_3741 Loads of organic fruit and veg from around the area… I have eaten veggie meals all day and they are beautiful here, the veg tastes of something 🙂 (saving myself for the steaks later this trip!)

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I have to say – I have heard sirens all day! But I have found the most secure place in San Francisco… every security guard I have seen in the last 24 hours was stood here 🙂

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Anyway… a great day…

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Yup – swimming the Bay day

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More market pics above and downtown below..IMG_3705

Chinatown…

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My only negative.. I didn’t think it was this good…

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The painted ladiesPainted ladies

Obligatory cable cars
SF cable cars
last but not least from today
Lombard St – the crookedest (sic) street in the world…. sadly they won’t let you take a motorbike up it 😦SF Lombard StThis last pic isn’t mine-you may have noticed a pink tinge to the pics – took it to Samy’s Cameras for a check, “failing CMOS sensor…” so raher than let it fail- I bought a new camera…

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 II