This was it, the big day. The XR was already packed after yesterday's adventure fail so I got an early start. Opting for the more direct route down 101 then across to Monterey via 156 I started out into the cool blue morning.
I was hauling ass for the first couple of hours and I noticed when I got to the gas station at Carmel Mission that I was using oil. This just hadn't happened before and I was surprised. I knew the bike was supposed to do that on highway runs, just never seen it. So I backtracked up to the Honda shop in Seaside to get some oil and a huge plastic funnel.
The Big Sur was as spectacular as ever... my fun only being interrupted by the bike cutting out on a nice-tight corner
but sure enough, the evap line from the tank was twisted. Totally relieved that I had correlated cause and effect, I untwisted the line and thumped off down the road in XR style.
I stopped at Cambria to fill-up and check my oil. It had held out fairly well on the ride from Seaside. Just the high-speed stuff burning it up. I called Chain Gang inmate patobravo, who I was supposed to be staying with in Santa Barbara, to let him know I was still on my way but running a little late after my problems on Tuesday. He gave me a tip on taking 154 into Santa Barbara over the mountains so I pounded out some more grueling miles on 101 before taking the scenic route into town.
Sure was pretty up there.
I caught up with patabravo, who is working on tricking out his F650's with some serious suspension and mods. Patobravo had kindly offered me a place to stay. When I arrived he said I be staying in the garage... I had a sleeping bag and tarp with me so I could make a fort out of my bike and stay nice and warm... turned out his garage was nicely converted into a bedroom. Luxury!
We went out for dinner with his son and spook, another Chain Gang rider who I met at Altitude Sickness (our first dual sport rally in California) last year. Some beer and a Martini helped smooth me out after a long day on the road. There's nothing like sharing stories with people who have travelled, whether on a motorcycle or off. Travel tends to round out a person... just like the man, Mark Twain said:
"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime."
Smart guy. I hit the sack hard.
This was really happening. The Baja Blitz Yard Sale was on.
Skip to Next Day