Author Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!  (Read 791 times)

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  • Offline RichieRich   us

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    Offline RichieRich

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    Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    on: November 08, 2022, 06:49:14 pm
    November 08, 2022, 06:49:14 pm
    My coworker and I rode from San Diego up to Yosemite and back, obviously taking the long route.

    About ten years ago, I did 350 miles on my sport bike to watch my friend graduate college. However, that trip was different since I spent about 3-4 days before making my way home. This trip to Yosemite was my first real ride, and I couldn't have asked for a better experience.



    The trip started in San Diego Friday morning to the outskirts of Los Angeles. We rode through the famous Angeles Crest Highway. As we were riding through, my SENA unit ultimately died and required a new unit. I thought it was the battery, but after leaving it on my portable charger for about an hour, it did not receive any juice. Luckily, we were just outside the greater Los Angeles area, and there was a CycleGear.





    Once we got through, we made our way to Tehachapi for the Tehachapi Loop. The viewpoint overlooks the Tehachapi Loop, a long, spiral section of railway track. This loop was built for trains to get up and down the grade (I believe it was a 2% grade?).





    From here, we headed North through a narrow mountain road up to central California. About 20 minutes into this road, we came across a bear cub. The funny thing is I saw it about 30-40 yards back as I went through a stretch of a chicane. I could see the face staring at me, but I thought I was seeing things, but as I got to the last turn, the face staring at me looked to the left and right back at me! I got within a bike length of the cub as it scattered away. My coworker was screaming over the comm to get the heck out! Thankfully, we did not see mama bear. I wish I had a dashcam for this.

    The view on top of that section was beautiful. The ride was pleasant, as we saw about 2-3 cars during that stretch. This road took us to Lake Isabella.







    From here, we headed East to 395, then we headed North to our first stop in Bishop.





    The following day we continued north on the 395 to Lee Vining. This section was a little funny but scary at the same time since it was high gusty winds. My coworker and I would catch each other getting caught in the gust and blown across the lane. At this point, my coworker was having issues with the bike having a hard time starting.



    Once in Lee Vining, we headed West through the 120 to get to Yosemite. Here, it started to rain, turning into snow since it got so cold. It reached about 15(F) degrees and was as high as 10,000ft in elevation. The following picture should be a video, but I don't know if it will play, so you should click on the video/picture. We didn't expect rain or this cold weather, but I am happy my coworker brought extra cold-weather gloves. Yosemite was beautiful, but it wasn't as astonishing as people made it. I told my wife I would take her one of these days to see it, but I wouldn't come back if it weren't for her. It's better if I get to hike.

    (video)










    Once we made it through Yosemite and down the mountain, we headed south to a small town called Springville for our second stop. Before we got into town, I had to bump start my coworker. We believe his starter went out. This town has a population of 500, which was the best part of this trip (besides the ride itself). The inn that we stayed at had a bar downstairs. My coworker and I planned to grab food and a few beers before calling it a night until the bartender started making this enormous jug of drink. Note: She had a skull painted on her face for Halloween. We asked what the big batch of drinks was for, and she said they were having a Halloween party that night, along with a costume contest.

    Coworker and I decided to stay up a little longer and see what it was all about. Words can't describe the experience that night. I met a lot of good folks and had many interesting conversations. 90% of the folks there are born and raised. I spent way more money than I wanted on drinks and a two rounds for the bar, but it was all worth it.



    The following day we headed East to get back to the 395. This was our last long stretch of twisty roads. We had to bump start his bike and decided he would not turn his bike off for the ride home today. Again, no traffic, cold weather, and high elevation. This section was a bit rough since it was ugly roads with lots of debris, so it required us to go slow. Halfway through, you could tell there was a significant fire as there were a lot of burnt trees. One of the pictures below is the Sequoia trees; they are HUGE!













    The last picture was at the top of the mountain. We made our way down and into a valley that we thought was the bottom of the hill. I was utterly wrong. It was strange because we were riding through the valley and surrounded by farmland. But ten or so miles, we come across this. The transition had us confused. Regardless, we continued our way down the mountain.











    Our last stretch to get home. My coworker and I decided to spend around 30 minutes relaxing before the boring ride home. It was about a 3hr ride from here, that is all highway. One last bump stop, and we were home!

    (video)


    We are already discussing our next trip and where we want to go. Definitely look forward to the next ride!

  • Offline Mareng1   gb

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #1 on: November 08, 2022, 08:34:19 pm
    November 08, 2022, 08:34:19 pm
    I enjoyed that!

    I’ll have a dig into that loop - but it looks from your photo that there are three concentric loops there?   (Just had a quick image search- only one loop)

    I bet your friend’s heated grips were better than yours !  :007:
    Last Edit: November 08, 2022, 08:36:37 pm by Mareng1

  • Offline RichieRich   us

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    Offline RichieRich

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #2 on: November 08, 2022, 09:22:17 pm
    November 08, 2022, 09:22:17 pm
    *Originally Posted by Mareng1 [+]
    I enjoyed that!

    I’ll have a dig into that loop - but it looks from your photo that there are three concentric loops there?   (Just had a quick image search- only one loop)

    I bet your friend’s heated grips were better than yours !  :007:
    It was a blast!

    Yes, one loop. I'm not into history much nor do I fancy railroads, but it was pretty cool to witness.

    The heated grips were nice, but it not stop cold air or water from coming through my gloves at first haha.

  • Offline chuckxr   us

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #3 on: November 09, 2022, 04:46:21 am
    November 09, 2022, 04:46:21 am
    Nice trip!!! With it this late in the year, it's not surprising that you hit really cold temps and sleet/snow at elevation. I try to keep clear of the Sierra Nevada high passes this time of year as weather is so unpredictable -- been stuck too many times in the past. I try to keep my mountain rides closer to the coast and mostly in the Santa Cruz Mountains during the winter months as the temps don't dip as low and minimal chance of sleet/ice/snow.

  • Online af1-windy   gb

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #4 on: November 09, 2022, 08:23:03 am
    November 09, 2022, 08:23:03 am
    Great photos, great trip.. thanks for posting them and reminding us all what these bikes are for.. :028:

    This is my next trip... https://www.adventurebikerider.com/article/route-des-grandes-alpes/

     :821: windy
    "When I’m riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive. When I stop riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive" Neil Peart.

  • Offline Mareng1   gb

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    Offline Mareng1

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #5 on: November 09, 2022, 08:46:18 am
    November 09, 2022, 08:46:18 am
    *Originally Posted by af1-windy [+]
    Great photos, great trip.. thanks for posting them and reminding us all what these bikes are for.. :028:

    This is my next trip... https://www.adventurebikerider.com/article/route-des-grandes-alpes/

     :821: windy

    I've done that route from top to toe - you don't do all the cols (17) in one hit though.   Not sure about the rest, but Cayolle and Bonnette are in parallel.  Bonette is the 'must do' of the pair, but Cayolle is a beautiful run.

    If memory serves - the 'route' isn't  exactly prescribed and you can decide your exact route depending on preferences (or cycle races etc).   

    You'll love it though!
    Last Edit: November 09, 2022, 08:46:55 am by Mareng1

  • Online af1-windy   gb

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #6 on: November 09, 2022, 09:45:18 am
    November 09, 2022, 09:45:18 am
    *Originally Posted by Mareng1 [+]
    I've done that route from top to toe - you don't do all the cols (17) in one hit though.   Not sure about the rest, but Cayolle and Bonnette are in parallel.  Bonette is the 'must do' of the pair, but Cayolle is a beautiful run.

    If memory serves - the 'route' isn't  exactly prescribed and you can decide your exact route depending on preferences (or cycle races etc).   

    You'll love it though!

    I should have pointed out we did this back in 2009... :038: but you're right, I'll love it, even more this time cos I'll be on me XR. Last time was on my Tuono..  :001:
    "When I’m riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive. When I stop riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive" Neil Peart.

  • Online af1-windy   gb

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #7 on: November 09, 2022, 09:48:37 am
    November 09, 2022, 09:48:37 am
    When I see photos like those in the OP it makes me want to pack up and feck off right now.. :007: I love that stuff. Mountains, Lakes, twisty roads, biking buddies, food... awesome. :020:.

    "When I’m riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive. When I stop riding my motorcycle, I’m glad to be alive" Neil Peart.

  • Offline Mareng1   gb

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #8 on: November 09, 2022, 10:43:14 am
    November 09, 2022, 10:43:14 am
    *Originally Posted by af1-windy [+]
    I should have pointed out we did this back in 2009... :038: but you're right, I'll love it, even more this time cos I'll be on me XR. Last time was on my Tuono..  :001:

    XR a great bike for those roads (although there are plenty of twins which might be slightly better).   

    This year is the first where I have seen pick-up trucks with rubber-edged dozer blades in front - clearing loose stones from the tarmac on the cols.    Also the first time I have seen an emergency medi-quad stationed up some cols at weekends.  Clever thinking to be able to get first response to accidents/medical conditions as quickly as possible.       



  • Online bobdave   gb

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    Re: Over 1k miles, 2.5 days... Amazing!
    Reply #9 on: November 09, 2022, 11:59:02 am
    November 09, 2022, 11:59:02 am
    Looks like you had a fun trip RichieRich. Got to wonder why so much luggage for a 2.5 day trip ! I keep promising myself a trip out to ride in California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah areas but Europe keeps calling me back.

    Windy - I have done quite a bit of the 'Grand Alpes' with a mate. We did Bonnette not Cayolle - as Mareng says it was a good choice. We did get caught up in a huge cycle event on one of them (can't be sure but I think it may have been Madeliene) which slowed us up a bit but that just gave us time to take in the scenery. The Alpes sure are a great place to ride.