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Thread: Our Oregon Washington trip

  1. #1
    Rally Rat RTRandy's Avatar
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    Our Oregon Washington trip

    Back in April I posted a request for info on good places, roads, and attractions to take in while exploring Oregon and Washington. http://www.bmwmoa.org/forum/showthread.php?t=44419

    The response was overwhelming and our trip was largely planned around all the great suggestions given here. When first posted I was planning to ride solo and later my dear friend and riding companion, "Doc" Hermann was able to join me making the trip so much better. Nothing like having a surgeon following along the whole way.

    With all the good suggestions and so many places to hit along the way we did our best to take in as much as we could in the limited time.

    We were originally trying to get direct to Oregon, but the great suggestions for California, we ended up heading north of Death Valley to ride Hwy 395 up the east side of the Sierras and over to the west side of Lake Tahoe. Special thanks to Seabeck for recommending Hwy 395. Thanks to LSKrabut for the great Utah advice and putting us on to Moki Dugway. Thanks to Franze and Tom (Ridealot) for putting us on Hwy 36 after Lassen and Ian (Visian) for the other suggested roads getting us into Oregon.

    A very special thanks for PMDave for all the detailed suggestions and information. I know of no other person that has had such a profound influence on my ALL riding experience including the time I started as a beginner. I've read both Proficient Motorcycling books cover to cover so I was determined to follow as much of the good advice a I could.

    On one last note, since some of the trip had to be cut in order fit as much as we could, some of the special places had to be left for a future trip. We had to forgo the loop around Petroli and Ferndale, CA, the Grand Coulee dam area, and the far northwestern coast of Oregon near Astoria.

    So on with the report and Pics:

    Even though Doc's first day of vacation was Thursday morning and we had planned to depart at 7am together out of Dallas, he was on call the night before operating on children and infants. This required him to have to make the customary "Rounds" on Thursday morning at the hospital. We departed separately since he didn't know how long his rounds would take though he managed to ride over to the hospital all packed and dressed to ride. He made his rounds with a doctor's coat over his riding pants and boots. Below was a hero's send off by his staff including the special sign waiting for him to head out.





    Day one was Dallas to Albuquerque. Typical day out in NM.



    Shot at end of first day. A good omen showing in the background.



    Ok we had no idea what this rock thing was in NM though pretty cool. Anyone know?



    On our way to Torrey.





    Ride report for the Moki Dugway:
    http://www.bmwmoa.org/forum/showthread.php?t=47102

    A video of Riding Hwy 95 south of Hanksville. Camera Ram mounted on left side of windshield.

    http://gallery.me.com/rpscott2#100430

    Riding west of Torrey and through Nevada to Tonapah.

    That's I-15 heading south which we hopped on for about 15 miles.



    Nevada. What can I say only to buy gas when you see it and a good place to find the point on your bike where it finally runs out of breath. Just sayin what I've heard. Not much to do out there but futz and fine tune the cruise control while you watch a horizon that never seems to get any closer.











    Gas and fine dining in Tonapah:


    Didn't take pictures on Hwy 120 over to Lee Vining, but highly recommend this road.
    For one thing they just finished resurfacing the top so ultra smooth the whole way and the other weird thing is it follows the terrain. They don't cut through a small hill to keep the road flat so the road constantly goes up and down these short rises. If you ever want to practice super compressions in the troughs and feeling your stomach drop on the ridges, this is the ultimate.



    Other end of Hwy 120 past Mono lake:





    Still on Hwy 120 about to hit 395 going north. Only an hour before in the hot dessert.



    Hwy 395 up ahead.





    You think this is bad. You ought to see the warning sings that show a symbol of a cow or bull. What's this world coming to!



    Continued:

  2. #2
    Rally Rat RTRandy's Avatar
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    4th of July heading north on 395. Celebrations everywhere with super weather. We stopped in the town of Bridgeport for lunch and a rest.









    Best place we stayed on the trip was in Truckee.



    Hwy 36 heading west to the California coast: Great road!



    And yes we stopped in Platina for the recommended Hamburger





    Mission accomplished!!



    Here's a video shot after lunch of riding on Hwy 36. Play with sound.

    http://gallery.me.com/rpscott2#100474

    Next morning we hit the coast near Eureka. All I can say is the big surprise was how freakin cold it got along the coast. Not only that, the temperature could rise 40 degrees withing 20 minutes of heading away from the coast. Made for some interesting clothing changes. We ended up riding with our rain suits just to add another layer.



    Lots of light fog every time we got near the water.



    Doc staying warm and yes we had to keep the shields down to keep our faces warm.



    Myself as well making us look like spaceman here



    We left the coast and took 199 through Grants pass and on to Crater Lake. We rode Fortuna, Grants Pass, Crater Lake, and ended up in Eugene the same day.



    Seeing Crater Lake on the web was a motivation for this trip. Crater lake is not from a meteor, but the remains of a volcano 5,800 years ago. There is no inflow of water and no outflow. Just rain and snow. Evaporation determines the level. It's 6 miles across and the deepest lake in the US at almost 2,000 feet deep. It's also the clearest lake in the US. The island you see in the middle called Wizzard Island is actually the remains of the final volcano that sealed the bottom with lava.


    King of the world here.





    Another view point further around the lake. From memory it's above 7,000 feet there so snow all around.









    This was a part of the trip where we had no predetermined place to stay. We arrived at Crater Lake late in the afternoon and thought we would find a motel near there after we left the park. We ended up riding for hours through deep pine forests and then ended up heading for Eugene on the slab just to find a place. Another long day.

    Continued:

  3. #3
    Rally Rat RTRandy's Avatar
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    Back to the Oregon Coast to get some pictures

    As luck would have it the fog was rolling in right when we got to the coast. Still lovely and an enjoyable ride through the many small coastal towns. We took Florence to Newport.



    You can see the fog rolling in and then super clear in some of the towns.







    Some serious fried seafood in Newport and yes everyone was wearing sweat shirts and jackets in July.









    New day and on to Multnomah Falls. The old road getting to and from was lovely and so was my cappuccino while watching the falls.









    Here's a video of the falls. Hard to capture the size, but pretty darn cool ( the falls not the video).

    http://gallery.me.com/rpscott2#100526

    On to St Helens from there on NS25 through the east entrance.

    Here's a sign you don't see every day.



    My pics are out of sync so I hope this is St Helens. Throughout Oregon and Washington you will see these incredible looming peaks. St Helens is like a chipped tooth. Hard to believe the eruption was 30 years ago.







    Super road into the park and all in great repair.



    On guy had no idea what had taken place years ago. Just looking for a hand out.



    Doc and I enjoying the rest stop. Gorgeous day in fact every day was great weather.



    These are matched bikes with two way radios and even have consecutive license plate numbers being they were bought on the same day in the same shop. Having two way radios saves a huge amount of hassles and TIME.


  4. #4
    Rally Rat RTRandy's Avatar
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    Still in the park. We were wondering why the fallen trees were so well preserved after being there 30 years. Anyone know the deal?



    Looking like a chipped tooth when compared to the way it looked before the top blew off some 30 years ago.









    Here comes Doc.

    [/IMG]


    Later in the same day, though late after riding NF-90 from Carson and NF-25 past Mt St Helens we finally got through Mt Rainier. Roads there were awesome.



    Spent that night in Yakima and the following morning we stopped at a local fruit stand. I love cherries and couldn't believe the $1.99 a pound price for rainier cherries. I never knew cherries are all picked by hand.

    All fresh cherries just being put out.



    I learned you can judge quality of the cherries by the color of the stems. Greener the better.



    Glad we had a top case as we stopped later in Prosser and feasted on fresh cherries. Worth the trip!









    Those straight roads near Prosser were incredibly nice riding through all the fertile areas and past the vast wheat fields. It's all good.

    Well we never got to ride NF-39 from Joseph to Oxford being it was closed due to mud slides, but if Hwy 86 from Baker City to Oxford was a cancellation prize, it turned out to be one of the top roads of the trip. We finally got to Hells Canyon at the end of the day and took the road up to the dam. It's about 15 miles of tight 10, 15, and 20 mph turns so it takes awhile to get up and back.













    [IMG]
    Last edited by RTRandy; 08-01-2010 at 10:14 PM.

  5. #5
    Extra pieces? geobeemer's Avatar
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    Looks like an awesome trip! Thanks for the pics and the text with them.
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  6. #6
    Registered User rhyeks's Avatar
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    I passed through a few of the same places on my way to/from Redmond. Thoroughly enjoyed your pictures and reading your notes about the locations. They brought back great memories of a great trip!

  7. #7
    Registered User RINTY's Avatar
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    Thanks, Randy!
    Rinty

    "When you don't know where you're going, any road will get you there."

  8. #8
    franze
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    deja-chew

    your cheeseburger



    my cheeseburger



    I'm so GLAD you got to ride some of these great roads. I really enjoyed the feedback you got from so many riders. I just got back today from a 5k loop to Wisconsin and back. I'm going to go back and "hit the links" on your report. Thanks for letting us know where you went and thanks for posting. Also, I think this is the best "straight road" shot I've ever seen!!! Please..........don't tell me where it is...........LOL.......... I've seen plenty the last two weeks in the Dakotas.


  9. #9
    Registered User rkoreis's Avatar
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    Re the question about the downed trees at St Helens, it might be the type. The forests were mostly fir and hemlock. Fir doesn't last, don't know about hemlock. I know that cedar lasts a long time, but I don't think that much cedar was in the forest. Maybe the blast stripped the bark off? Bark helps with the rotting process. It's a question I've not heard before.

    As for the cold on the coast, that's normal. Last year we left Vancouver on the second of consecutive 100+ degree days. By the time we hit Lincoln City we had on all of our layers. The temp difference was 40 degrees. Foggy and cool all the way down to Eureka, where we went inland to warmer temps. Back to the coast and it was once again cool and foggy. Same thing the summer before when we did a loop of the Olympic peninsula. Nice weather until Kalaloch, then cold and foggy until we went inland along the Hoh. The last time I had warm, sunny weather on the coast was in January a couple of years ago. Go figure.

    Nice pics. I love living in the PNW. Lots of variety in the scenery.

  10. #10
    Rally Rat RTRandy's Avatar
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    deja-chew

    [QUOTE=franze;603773]your cheeseburger



    my cheeseburger



    I thought a dozen times about putting both those photos together on here so glad you did it for me. It's funny, we went all that distance just to sit at the same counter that you originally suggested.

    Thanks again for putting us on to Hwy 36. In case you missed it, here's the video I made shot entirely on that road.

    https://www.me.com/gallery/#100474

  11. #11
    look out!!! Visian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTRandy View Post
    Super road into the park and all in great repair.
    you should have tried the east side route, to the windy ridge observation point... with all the receding grade fractures it was like riding a paved motocross track.

    the cruisers were having a tough time, the GS slammed through it just fine.

    great report!

    ian
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  12. #12
    Registered User Bob_M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTRandy View Post
    Back
    You think this is bad. You ought to see the warning sings that show a symbol of a cow or bull. What's this world coming to!

    And this is a comment from a Texan!!

    Great report. You rode some fine roads.

  13. #13
    Brett
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    Great pics, I remember the little town in Nevada on Rt6 only gas from Yosemite to there and 163 miles after that to Ely. Went on a lot of the same Rts like 36 in California also. Most of your pics are better than mine lol

    Thanks
    Brett

  14. #14
    Rally Rat RTRandy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob_M View Post
    And this is a comment from a Texan!!

    Great report. You rode some fine roads.
    I know! It's "Shoot first, ask questions second" around here.

  15. #15
    Rally Rat RTRandy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visian View Post
    you should have tried the east side route, to the windy ridge observation point... with all the receding grade fractures it was like riding a paved motocross track.

    the cruisers were having a tough time, the GS slammed through it just fine.

    great report!

    ian
    We did come in the east side on a Nf-99 which took us near Spirit Lake. This came off Nf-25. I'm guessing this must be the windy Ridge observation point ? Those are people walking up and down that hill on that wooden planked path.





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