ALSO VISIT: HOME PAGE - OPERATION THUNDERBIRD - INDIA - MEXICO 2014 - MOTO GUZZI TX '14
2013 CanWest HUBB Travelers Meeting
To Ride my 20 year old BMW R100GSPD to Canada & Back without using Major Freeways if possible...
Up to Canada, camping with RTW motorcyclists
Route taken North from Sacramento CA Up the West Coast of the US, across Washington to Eastern BC,
where I attended the CanWest HUBB Travelers Meeting.
After which I rode east to Alberta Canada then headed South entering back into the US at Chief Mountain
by Glacier National Park, heading South West back to California though Montana, Idaho & Oregon...
approximately 3,175 miles (5,110 Km's) round trip

DAY ONE :
Sacramento CA to Gold Beach OR...
The ride begins & frustration melts away

Haka to start the journey
After struggling for a day and a half before departure with a leaking front rim, Having cleaned it up and sealed it,
I faced the near impossible task of remounting the tyre, I resorted to the old "Starter Fluid Technique",
Not recommended but effective if a bit daunting if you've never done it before mounting a tyre with starter fluid.
Then we hit the road, a day behind schedule, with a traditional Haka from my Kiwi traveling companion...

route16 & 20 California
A couple of hours later I had traveled north west out of the Sacramento Valley into the Capay Valley, then climbing out along the 16 to the 20 as I ascended the eastern side of the Coastal Range, though the late summer heat and dry golden brown foothills...

What you talkin' bout Willits
Skirting around Clear Lake, arrived at Willits as the sign says "The Gateway To The Redwoods"

Willits Skunk Train
& home of The Skunk Train... As I thought to myself "Wot U Talkin' 'Bout Willits"

Busters Burgers, Willits CA
Decided to to stop for Lunch, because I was traveling alone I sat at the Kitchen Counter of Busters Burgers in Willits, these guys whipped up a great meal for me, nothing was too much trouble, but you better have cash no Cards accepted...
(Don't worry I'm not going to mention every restaurant or photo bomb every meal I have on this trip, only the memorable ones)

Harley Girls
Not being a Harley Davidson fan, I have to acknowledge that there are a ton of people out there riding them,
Like these Ladies who pulled up across the road from me, they're so well represented on the road they pretty much puts all the others Marques to shame, except Maybe BMW... I noticed that an overwhelming majority of touring riders seem to fall into 1 of the 2 categories
1. Large Groups of riders will be on Harley's,
2. Individuals or Small Groups of riders will be on BMW's"

South Park Monster Bus, Peg House CA
Heading on up the 101, I pull over to get the obligatory roadside attraction photo's first the South Park Monster Bus, found but The Peg House,

Fake Patrol Car, Peg House CA
along with the Fake Patrol Car, that has been mercilessly stickered & tagged...

Redwoods, Avenue of the Giants
Before dropping on to the Avenue Of The Giants which runs almost parallel with the 101 but meanders between some of the planets tallest trees...

Redwoods, Avenue of the Giants
There are some huge trees right by the roadside, the truly massive ones require short walks into the forest,
well worth the effort, even if the camera can never do them justice, it's an awesome sight

Redwoods, Avenue of the giants
If only the Park Rangers would let me ride into the grove for the photo op... this is as close as I could get with the bike.

Trees of Mystery

A quick trip up the coast past Eureka/Arcata riding though a relentless nor-westerly, I was relieved to get back amongst the trees in Klamath and some shelter from the cold headwind.
Had to get a Pic with Paul Bunyan & Babe at Trees Of Mystery there is a self guided walking tour through some kitsch displays made from the trees for amusement, but the highlight is a Gondola lift ride to the top of the forest, that gives you a great view of some of the trees from above as well as the forest laid out before you, not free but worth it if you're never done it before...

As the sun was now getting low in the Sky I decided to push on to Oregon and find a Cheap Motel along the way
to end Day 1...


DAY TWO : Gold Beach OR to Olympia WA
What's all the ruckus?

Gold Beach Deer
I woke early to the sound of Truck Tyres skidding down the road, turns out the modest Motel I found in the middle of the night was right at the point of the road that the deer cross back and forward each morning & evening...

See Deer, Run
A Resident of the Motel's Dog on self appointed Deer Duty, only problem being you might not hit a Deer
but rather a sweet Ol' Dog instead...

Bad deer chasing dog
Yeah she's knows it's naughty, but oh so much fun... Anyway the Oregon Trail Lodge was full of characters, clean & cheap, what more could a motorcyclist on budget looking for interesting experiences ask for...?

Prehistoric Gardens Oregon
Half way between Gold Beach and Port Orford I came across this too good to resist Photo Op, at The Prehistoric Gardens, don't know what it's like inside but who can pass up a Dinosaur on the side of the road?

Where are you from?
I stop in Bandon for breakfast at a local spot called "Brewed Awakenings" after some interesting conversations
with some locals I noticed they had a Map on the wall for people to show where they are from (Last Year),
of course Sacramento was totally stuffed with pins so I pinned Whangarei, New Zealand, where I was born,
for those who have no idea where that is I put a big red arrow in the picture.

North Bend Lumber Yard
Later I stopped for a leg stretch and was fascinated watching the machinery work in a North Bend Lumber Yard.

Netune State Scenic Lookout
Looking for a place to stop for a snack I discovered a spot called "Neptune, State Scenic Lookout", I also discovered what My BMW would look like if put on a ton of weight (see Ford Pickup with Overhead Camper)

Beach Sculpture
There was some interesting Installation Art down on the beach below...

Oregon Coast
With typical Oregon coastal views to the North...

Oregon Coast
& South, on this windswept rugged shoreline.

Best Veggie Pizza
Ok so this is the only time I'm going to Photo bomb my meal, but just look at it, this is a Small Veggie Pizza from
Main Street Pizza in Tillamook Oregon, I didn't have too much in the way of expectations considering...

Main St Pizza Sign
Their Signage, which had next to nothing to do with...

Main strret Pizza
The view from or location of the establishment.

Astoria Trolley
Carrying on up the Coast I arrived in Astoria, Oregon which seemed like a very quaint town that I didn't have time
to explore this trip...

Astoria OR
However it is located on the South Bank of the Columbia River, which meant I had to cross the 4 Mile long Astroia-Megler Bridge into another State...

Washington Welcome
That's right Washington, which straight away felt colder and more damp than Oregon 4 miles to the south...

Aberdeen WA
I decided I was going to push up the coast as far as I could before turning East and heading inland,I thought it would be funny to go to Aberdeen, so I could eMail the picture to my Scottish friend Gerry with a quote like,
" I took the High road ta Aberdeen an' didney see hide nor hair of ye..."

Heading East to Olympia for the night with the Sun getting low along with the gas in the my tank, I calculated there was enough fuel to get to a gas station as long as there was one along the way...
After switching my first fuel tap on to reserve, the first gas station I saw was on the wrong side of the separated highway and spotted too late to make the exit, just after that I had turn the second fuel tap over leaving me with no option but find gas in a hurry, Next Exit 5 Miles, will they have gas?
The sign before the off ramp shows Gas (relief) the sign after I turned off showed the Gas station was 5 miles from the highway (panic) I made it and Fueled Up, just over 9 Gallons in a 9 1/2 Gallon tank!!
Bonus, I discovered that I had inadvertently stumbled into the neighbourhood that my friends had moved to
and was only 2 miles from their new home...

DAY THREE : Chillin' in Olympia
I decided to to stay an extra day with my friends Lisandro & Valencia in their new home.

Bush Walk to the Sounds
Which turns out is in a great neighbourhood for walking, including this trail called "The Garfield Nature Trail" that virtually runs from their backdoor to "West Bay Park" which is located on Budd Inlet of the Puget Sound...

Olympia Capital
Which has a clear view across the Bay of the Downtown Area & State Capital.

Lisandro Inspects the BMW
After a day of exploring Olympia with my hosts... I did a some pre-flight checks on the BMW to facilitate an early get-a-way the next morning, Lisandro gave it the final seal of approval, well that was He liked the Colour
and was surprised how easy it was to keep balanced on the mainstand...

Good Food, Good Company, Comfy Bed... I can't take much more of this I'll have to leave???

DAY FOUR : Olympia WA to Grand Forks B.C.
Crap I have to use the Freeway...

Snoqualmie Falls
Having ridden on Freeways for the last 2+ hours I decided I needed a break and headed for Snoqualmie Falls,
Snoqualmie is a town, along with North Bend just down the road that cult classic "Twin Peaks" used for all it's exterior scenes... I ride on down to North Bend before heading back to the frantic pace of the 90.

WA breakfast all day
Escaping the 90 at Cle Elum, I start to Zig Zag North and East toward Canada, but the provisions that Lisandro & Valencia pack off with me had run out & I was getting Hungry, deep in Apple Country at Wenatchee I spotted "Breakfast All Day" & after filling up I came out to find my BMW had friends...
(well, not really, He's a bit too working class for them) It left me wondering, how much did they cost, how many hours of polishing have they had & how far will they ever get ridden...?

Wa Indian Sculpture
Rest Stop break and this interesting sculpture was at one end of the compound...

WA Apple Country
which over looked the Columbia River, If you ever wondered where Washington Apples are grown, this what apple the orchards look like, they must be making money judging by the size of the homesteads, Reminds me of Marlborough, New Zealand in the Summer, except the green patches would be Sauvignon Blanc Vines not Apple Trees

WA Indians Gas Station
The Indian sculpture theme was a nice touch throughout the region, and classed up this gas station forecourt.

Cabovers in Washington
A gaggle of Cabovers in rural North East Washington, gotta say I'd take the Ford (left) & The Jailbar GMC (right).

Cabover in WA
I love Ol' Trucks... this Dodge Cabover was for sale $3500 If memory serves...

Truck Muesum
Turns out this is "Husky Auto & Truck Museum" in Curlew WA, it was closed and I have no info about the place.

MC Caution
Wondering where I was going to sleep for the night, and thinking about crossing into Canada in the morning,
but got distracted by the road conditions, which where not nearly the issue the signs would lead you to believe,
& before I knew it I was...

BC welcome
at the border with nowhere else to go but on to British Columbia, that's "The Best Place on Earth" in case you were wondering & in Canada according to the sign...

Think Metric BC
Got to adjust my thinking back to new world measurement system...

Grand Forks BC live music
Rolling into Grand Forks B.C, I stumbled across a free concert, so I stopped relaxed and listened to some "Ol' Time Rock 'n' Roll" literally, along with plenty of standards of the era, my favourite of the night was a Van Morrison cover of "And It Stoned Me"

You know Canada is like whole other country up here...

DAY FIVE :
Grand Forks BC to Nakusp BC
It's pronounced Nah-Cusp the Canadian Border Agent assured me... NOT nut sack

BC roads Closed
Looking at Google Maps, there seemed to be a more direct route north than the Main Road... However an hour down the road I came across this sign, surely this doesn't include the road I was going to use?
I tell myself "I've come too far to turn back" so I sallied forth into the unknown...

Forestry Road
After a while Sealed Road gave way to Gravel... well this isn't too bad I thought to myself, but unlike the TV ads that say "But wait, it gets better", this road got way worse...

BC road Closed
A couple of hours more & an Open Road gave way to a Closed Road?! But the gate was open?!
Thank goodness on the "Closed Road" I had been riding along into Grizzly Territory no less, I met some guys driving a Pick-up who had been supervising the road maintenance, they informed me I wasn't too lost, I had made a wrong turn 20 miles back after mistaking the route I was supposed to take for someone's poorly maintained driveway... I'm sure they got a chuckle out of the situation and will probably refer to me as "Meals on Wheels" if they ever recount the story...

Curious Cattle
I didn't come across any Grizzlies thank goodness, But there where plenty of Curious Cattle along the road...

curious Bull
This Guy seemed a little peeved and was watching my back like he wanted a piece of it, needless to say a quick snap over my shoulder and I headed off...

Needles-Fauquier Ferry
After finally hitting Sealed roads at Edgewood I head up to Highway 6 and onto the Needles-Fauquier Ferry that crosses the Upper Arrow Lake, which is the same body of water that Nakusp is on 35 Miles (56Km's) to the north, my destination for the next few days...

Nakusp Parking
Arriving not knowing anyone, I was ushered into this spot by a fellow R100GSPD rider,

Nakusp Camping
& along with many others this was our home for the next few days & nights...

DAY SIX & SEVEN : Meeting in Nakusp
Campfires, Drink, Tall Tales & Instant Friends

ALaska Dudes

Well it looked like I stumbled into a great spot, John (left) and fellow R100GSPD rider who set me up with a parking space was part of a larger contingent of Alaskans, I was instantly adopted which made it all the more fun... John and the other John aka "Baja Bob" (far right) would be riding onto Central & South America after this meeting, which they called AK. Rip To The Tip "Bon Voyage" or should I say "Buen Viaje"


Jay and Bostjan
Jay and Boštjan Škrlj buddy up for a photo Boštjan is in the progress of a huge around the world ride, Jay has just returned form a trip around the Americas...

Mercaad
Jay's wife Mercedes acting as support vehicle, smiles at the amount of stuff they bought on this short ride, considering Jay and Mercedes traveled the Americas for 1 year with their teenage son on 2 BWM's it is kinda funny...

Anette Birkmann
Annette Birkmann, Intrepid Traveler & Author on the last leg of her latest ride crossing of Canada East to West

Sidecar Hack
There where plenty of Bikes too that caught my eye, including this nicely put together Hack, with this I could take my wife Kim & little dog Sukie along...

Harley Scrambler

And Bob Weeks' Harley in an Old School Scrambler Style, a crowd favourite...

Anyway the Meeting was reaffirming as I got to meet a lot of Travelers, hear and tell some stories, exchange info,
and see some entertaining and informative presentations by people that have got out there and ridden the miles..


DAY EIGHT : Departure Day
A wrong turn just means new friends

The day before I watched some people I knew ride off to continue their adventures, fortunately that evening there was still great conversation to be had at the campsite, however, the next morning it was time to pack up and continue my adventure, leaving Nakusp I managed to take the right road in the wrong direction for nearly 30 miles before I realized it, mentally kicking myself I turned around...

Kai's flat tyre

On my way back to the start I came across a fellow traveler struggling with his bike on the side of the road...


Kai breakdown in Paradice
Turns out it is Kai-Uew Och on the last leg of Halifax to Vancouver ride, after thousands of Miles he finally got his first flat tyre, talk about lucky a slow leaking rear tyre on a straight piece of road not 20 miles (30km's) from a travelers meeting, so no dangerous blow-out and where there was going to be someone by to help in a matter of minutes (like some dumb arse who went the wrong way) we got the wheel off and broke the bead using my Sidestand and had the tube out only to discover that a Tyre Shop had pinched the tube during the last tyre change and it had finally given up the ghost, but before long even more people stopped to help and I made my departure, hoping to make up for my bad navigation...

Balfour-Kootenay Bay Ferry
After riding back up North to Nakusp only to head South again this time on the east side of the mountains instead of the west side, I figured it was time to forgive myself and enjoy some great riding, which was pleasantly interrupted by the Balfour-Kootenay Bay Ferry, it looked like a mini BMW rally, none of us knew each other in Balfour but after swapping war stories by the time we got to Kootenay Bay we were all riding buddies, yeah it's like that...

Balfour - Kooteneay Bay Ferry Fishing
The rest of the time I watched the scenery go by and wondered if the weather was going to do any more than make idle threats for the rest of the days ride?

Walter
After we rode down the 3A from Kootenay Bay to Creston which is reputed to be one of the best motorcycling roads in BC, Walter and I stopped for a late lunch, before we knew it Leslia & Ron from Cranbrook who we met on the Ferry had joined us and then paid for lunch, so unexpected... Thank You Guys.

Titan Worlds Biggest Truck
After parting ways with Ron & Leslia, Walter and I continued on to Sparwood B.C. where there supposed to be a Free Campground, we never did find it even though Walter's German Map insisted it was there (plug in snide remark about "German Efficiency" here), but we did find the World's Biggest Truck.. Yeah Baby!

Titan 33-19
Just incase it's hard to read there's the condensed version
3300 HP, 16 Cylinder 2 Stroke Diesel 169 Liter (10,320 ci) Diesel/Electric
Weight 260 Ton, Payload 350 Ton = 600 ton fully loaded
Length 20m (65') Width 7.5m (24') Height 6.8m (22.5')

Dump
It doesn't look that big until you stand next to it..

Titan Shock
Then it takes on a whole different perspective, did I mention I love old trucks, want it...

Sparwood Camping

Walter and I ended up staying at Mountain Shadows Campground, It was $21 for the both of us and I thought the facilities were good...

We settled in for the night, upon which Walter told me He liked his bike but this new model BMW is too heavy compared to his old R100GS back in Germany, as he pulled out a full sized axe, a camp stove and cook set, provisions, a spare gallon of gas and a Box of Wine without making a dent in the amount of stuff he still had attached to the bike...

We sat around the fire drinking wine and Walter told me tales form when he was a Driver with Rotel Tours, having seen the world many times over by driving through about 150 countries, He was Driver, Mechanic & Cook for groups of tourists in the their self contained Bus Motels...
We crawled into our tents around 2 AM when we heard the thunder rolling in from the mountains and felt the first drops of rain, once tucked in the rain really came down my little tent was totally soaked on the outside but I remained dry inside, good job Nemo


DAY NINE : Sparwood B.C. to Missoula MT
If you don't like scenic shots you're going to hate this part...

Alberta Welcome
About 10 miles down the road I crossed into Alberta...

Alberta Mountains
I was now on the eastern side of the Canadian Rockies and would be riding toward the Prairie until...

catch your breath
I turn South again at Pincher Creek, Alberta and head toward Chief Mountain,

Heading to Chief Mountain
where I would start to see the mountains again and cross back into the USA.

Looking back
The scenery was starting to get more rugged as the mountain tops rise above the Timberline,

Devils Peak?
and when Chief Mountain came into view, I just knew someone would mention "Close Encounters" (sorry folks wrong peak, that would be Devils Tower National Monument in Wyoming)

Alberta heading for Chief Mountain
The gigantic edge of stratified rock exposed, indicates that this once ancient seabed is now a mountain...

Raod into Glacier National Park
Entering into Glacier National Park, skirting along the northern shore of St. Mary Lake I'm treated to amazing vistas, it's easy to see why it's called Going-To-The-Sun Road

Lake St. Mary
The lake itself is spectacular as it separates the mountains where no doubt a Glacier ground out this huge valley a millenia ago...

Glacier NP Bus
Thank goodness most people elect to leave the driving to Red Bus Tours freeing up the road for Motorcycles...

Glacier Upper Waterfall
Climbing over the summit there are such road side features as this waterfall

Glacier NP Apline Flowers
& small open areas of Alpine Wild Flowers...

Motorcycle Parking Glacier NP
There are few places wide enough to stop by the side of the road unless you're on a motorcycle...

The Road to the Sun
The road itself shows as just a thin scar on the side of this immense valley, believe me there are cars, trucks & Buses on the road they're just so small in this picture that doesn't appear to be any...

Motorcycle Parking 2
Seen from a different perspective, from the special Motorcycle parking lot,

The Sun
from which I was able to photograph the view across the valley.

Glacier NP Lower Waterfall
Now down in the Valley floor, following Avalanche Creek along to McDonald Lake and eventually out if the Park,

Looking back Glacier NP
the mountains still loom large in your rear vision...

Powering Up Evergreen MT
I needed to get hold of my Cousin Mark in Missoula to let him know when I was going to arrive, but both my Phone and Laptop were dead, I needed a place to recharge my devices, chill out for a bit and workout where I was heading. So I pulled into a parking lot by an intersection as I was now totally unsure which way to go? That's when I spotted a couch next to a power outlet outside a closed shop (thanks Universe)

After charging up the phone and making the call, it turned out the intersection I was stopped at was where I needed to turn, if I wanted to follow the better motorcycling route around the shoreline of Flathead Lake...

It was a beautiful ride with virtually no traffic, all was going perfectly until my Clutch Cable broke 50 miles from Missoula, having actually practiced clutchless shifts in the past, and knowing the BMW will pull away and run from a dead stop using the starter motor in First gear, I wasn't too worried and made it to my cousin's home at the time I was expected, but was still happy I wouldn't have to hear anymore sickening graunches from the odd miscalculated gear changes.

DAY TEN & ELEVEN : Missoula MT
Bike Repairs & Cuzzie Catch-Up...

Dinner for Mark & Laura

First of all I want to thank my cousin Mark and his wife Laura, because they had to put up with me an extra day or two due to the broken clutch cable...
Mark helped me track down BMW dealers in MT and WA, we were able to find a cable at South Sound BMW, the Overnight freight was going to way more than the cable itself, so I asked Ryan the parts guy I dealt with, to check FedEx rates against UPS which they usually use, FedEx was cheaper Ryan offered to drop it off in person to FedEx, which he did saving me $30 in the process "Cheers Ryan" it arrived at 10:28am the next day, well before the 10:30am deadline...
After I fixed the bike I started to pack and Mark asked "Aren't you going to go tomorrow morning?" OK then, So I offered to cook diner... Guys, Don't look so surprised, I'm sure it'll taste fine? If not just keep drinking!
Oh and if you're ever looking for a trust worthy Gold & Silver guy, check out Mark's company Montana Rarities


DAY TWELVE : Missoula MT to New Pine Creek OR
635 Miles from sublimely winding to mesmerizing straights & in temperatures from mountain chilly to desert heat...

Lolo Fire Damage
I kept being told about the Lolo Pass (Highway 12) so I just had to see what the fuss was about, fortunately for me the road was opened the day before, unfortunately for the residents along the first part of the road it had been closed due to a massive Forest Fire, this place was spared, but only just...

Idaho Welcome
After the road had turned twisty, I started to climb into the mountains & the temperatures dropped drastically, at that point you enter into Idaho...

Lolo 99 Miles to go
Read it and weep, that's right 99 miles of winding road to myself, I think I passed about 3 cars going my way and saw about a dozen vehicles coming in the opposite direction.
Now I know what the fuss is about, at Kooskia ID I turned south on Highway 13 to Grangeville ID, where I joined the 95 South, there was awesome sections of riding especially on 13 & following the Salmon River down to Riggins ID on the 95, after that the roads got straighter and the temperatures started to rise...

Burns OR skatepark
I bombed through Oregon's High Desert on the 20 until I arrived at Burns, the last sizable settlement before heading south on the 395 toward the boarder with California, the day was still youngish and I was on a roll, so I headed off, but not before getting picture of this Bronze Sculpture on the corner of the town skate park...

395 lookig North OR
The 395 is a lonely straight road, looking back to the North...

395 Looking South OR
& heading South, I waited for awhile to get other vehicles in the photos, to give a sense of scale...

395 OR in the middle of nowhere
Every rise ridden over just lays out another vast vista.

Lake Abert looking North
For miles I could smell a strange brackish scent, as I approached the shoreline of Lake Abert seen here looking North toward the shallow end


Abert Lake looking South

& looking South as the sun sets on the mountains...

Hills at Albert Lake Sunset
If you ever wondered why people say the desert is so beautiful, I have a theory it's the serenity of isolation, the grandeur of it's scale & colours during sunrise and sunset

me and my shadow
At this point it was almost the end of the day and the end of the second tank of gas, so I started to look for a gas station and a place to camp in that order, heading down the road I found gas just before running out, while filling up I found a Oregon State Park Campsite on the map about 35 miles further down the road, as it was dusk at this point, so I'm glad I know how to set-up my tent in the dark & carry a couple of good headlamps...


DAY THIRTEEN :
New Pine Creek OR to Portola CA
A hot shower and a good night's sleep will do a body good...


Good Morning
I ended up staying at at Goose Lake State Recreational Area, which was $20 had and good facilities, next morning I woke up to the sounds and sight of a bevy of fat happy Quails grazing around my tent, my stirring sent them packing, so sadly I wasn't able to photograph them...

Lawn Sculpture OR
Leaving the Campsite revealed this house with it's various lawn sculptures, concealed by darkness the night before, this one was my favourite the irony was too much.

Goose Lake
Again, the odd brackish smell was noticeable, this time it was Goose Lake there was no water in the Lake...

Gooselake colours
But colorful vegetation had spread across it's bed.


Alturas CA

Next town I passed through was Alturas CA where I stopped for coffee and breakfast, this cool mission style building was next door, turns out it's a Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks' Lodge

Volcano Country
At Secret Creek Rest Stop, it became apparent that I was now in the volcanic terrain of Lassen County, with strewn black scoria rock as far as the eye can see...

Cars and Trucks for sale
Passing through Litchfield CA, I spot some interesting vehicles on the side of the road, turns out they're all for sale, inquiring after a couple of different prices I realized they want a premium over absolute top dollar, so I leave promptly...

15 Miles per Hour
With plenty of time to get to Portola, I decide to head for the Hills, and take an excursion over he Milford Grade Trail to Frenchman Lake, OK I wasn't expecting corners like this, surely this will be as tough as it gets...

10 miles per Hour
Wrong!! and when they say 10mph they mean 10mph...


Milford grade

Even if the surface is loose sand and the road still climbs rapidly, eventually it straightens out,


Grand vista
giving me enough pause to see that the views are worth it...
At the top of the road there is a 3 way intersection, no signs, no obvious traffic bias on any of them and no reception for the iPhone, then along came some guys in a Pick-up to the rescue (again), armed with their directions and reassurances I continued on.

High Medow
Eventually out of the mountains and the road opened out,

High Medow
so now I could see beyond the next bend,

alpine Canyon
The countryside was showing evidence of ancient Volcanic activity,

Volcanic Gully1
as the road turned back to seal and meandered down to the valley below,

Volcanic Gully2
following this gully that was probably carved out by this very stream.

Fox at Burnell's place
Making it to my friend Burnell's place in Portola, it's time to chill out, watching a copy of Road Heroes I picked up at the CanWest HUBB Travelers Meeting, I notice a little furry face watching me through the glass doors, I get up get my camera and open the door before the little Gray Fox even bothers to scamper away into the night.

DAY FOURTEEN :
Portola CA to Home.
Last leg, ride down one of my favourite California Roads...

Burnell's Place
Up early in the morning to take advantage of hopefully light traffic & cool tempratures...
I head out along Portola McLears Rd to 89 through Graeagle, where I pick up the 70, a quick run down to Quincy to take on some gas, then the fun begins the 70 from Quincy to Yankee Hill is such a awesome road with great views and tons of corners, as long as you're not stuck behind a Camper or 5th wheel RV, anyway traffic was light, conditions perfect so the ride was great, after getting down the hill to Oroville it was just a matter of cruising home through the orchards of the Northern Sacramento Valley as I count down the miles...

Shoei Bug Killer
Now that I'm back home, I can safely say that there are a lot of bugs that didn't get to bite me judging by the state of my helmet, except the one that bit me years ago, pretty sure that was a Travel Bug... where to next?
ALSO VISIT: HOME PAGE - OPERATION THUNDERBIRD - INDIA - MEXICO 2014 - MOTO GUZZI TX '14