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Old 10-20-2008, 04:36 PM   #1
pdedse OP
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Portland...Puerto Vallarta...???

Last spring I led a group of students to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico and while there rented a KLR650 and did a couple of 3 day weekend rides around the area.

One of the students, Marc, told me about an idea he had to buy a Honda XR650 and ride from Oregon to Puerto Vallarta where he would continue his Spanish studies. I mentioned casually that I'd go along, all I would need is to buy a similar bike.

Fast forward to August and we both had our bikes and there was nothing really preventing our trip from happening. We thought Portland to Baja, take ferry to Mazatlan then to Puerto Vallarta from where I would return home the mainland and he would stay for 3 months.

Nothing to prevent us...except my sister calls out of the blue and tells me she's getting married...right in the middle of my planned trip.


So we move our trip up a week from the 1st of Oct to the 23rd of Sept. but now I don't have time to return to Portland so I make various plans to leave bike in Puerto Vallarta, southern Baja, San Diego, Phoenix. I'm not sure where I'll end of leaving it cause I'm not sure how far I'll get. But Marc has to leave end of Sept or not too late into Oct. so we go forward.

I leave Portland about 12:30 on the 23rd of Sept and meet Marc in Salem. Our first day isn't ambitous as we need only get to Medford in southern Oregon where we'll stay the first night with a friend. An hour later near Eugune our trip nearly ends...

(no photos yet, my camera decides to quit working from the get go, and later I lose it, but pics coming soon)
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Old 10-20-2008, 04:46 PM   #2
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Sounds like when there's a will.. there's a way....

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Old 10-20-2008, 08:40 PM   #3
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huh?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pdedse

I leave Portland about 12:30 on the 23rd of Sept and meet Marc in Salem. Our first day isn't ambitous as we need only get to Medford in southern Oregon where we'll stay the first night with a friend. An hour later near Eugune our trip nearly ends...

(no photos yet, my camera decides to quit working from the get go, and later I lose it, but pics coming soon)
Am I in some weird kind of time warp where this just posted today?
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Old 10-21-2008, 09:11 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dogmantra
Am I in some weird kind of time warp where this just posted today?
Yes, you are! Actually, I'll ruin the story and let you know that I'm back...sans bike or buddy...didn't have a computer w/ me during the trip, and after initial camera problems, I didn't see the point of trying to maintain a RR during the trip. So all this is after the fact...
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Old 10-21-2008, 09:59 AM   #5
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My 07 KLR650 the day I bought it used w/ 2500 miles:



A photo taken later in the trip, loaded down. Preview: notice white muffler guard on Marc's Honda is singed black!!!



When I arrived at Salem to meet Marc, I hadn’t had lunch yet and Marc decided he wanted to take a smaller, lighter sleeping bag and so while he returned home to switch it out I visited Carl’s Junior. A young lady and her mom were looking at me repeatedly during lunch and just before I left the daughter says that she just has to ask about my bike, gear and riding clothes, where I was going, why, etc. The first of what would be many casual conversations about our trip. Seems so many folk want to do this sort of thing…I was feeling rather lucky!

Marc returned and we were on our way. An hour later I noticed a blue puff of smoke from his muffler. Then another. Then still another. In fact, about every minute there was another smaller one, or two or three in in a row. Strange, I think to myself. New bike and it’s already burning oil. But someone had told me that Honda XR650s do burn some so I thought I’d mention it to Marc when we pulled over. Which wasn’t too much later, thankfully. When I pulled in behind Marc, we had our first big UH-OH!! Turns out the bike WASN'T, yet it WAS burning oil. His right saddle bag was loaded down, and yep, was rubbing against his muffler. It had burned a hole clean through. But why the blue puffs of burning oil? Turns out he had a quart of oil at the bottom of the saddle bag and the muffler had burned a hole through the bottle too! Oil was everywhere, bathing his tools, packages of food, service manual, oh…and…a…flare?!?! Hmmm, what would THAT have looked like had it gone off? Flaming sparks and oil shooting out the back as he rode down the hiway…funny the thought, but then again, kind of not…

Marc was pissed to say the least, but I was quite calm, because I knew I had the perfect fix. I, too, was traveling with soft saddle bags, but had bought a larger muffler guard just for this purpose. When I installed both the guard and my bags I thought what a waste of $40 because they didn’t even overlap. Oh well, I thought, at least there’s less chance of someone burning a leg on the muffler. Stroke of luck! I pulled the muffler guard off my bike and with a bit of tweaking, it fit his just fine. Problem solved. We duct taped his saddle bag, wiped all the oil off as best we could and were on our way to Medford.

VERY sorry not to have some funny pics. My camera was working at the time, later it quit, and then I lost it two days later! I think Marc has some pics of our dilema and when they catch up with me I’ll post them.

Made it to Medford by 8:30pm just after dark and our friend was waiting for us. All was well. We decide that we’ll look for a tent patching kit the next day to see if that will fix his bags. Before falling asleep we talk again about what might have been with oil ablaze and flares shooting their thing from the back of his bike, wondering if that might have ended our trip before it even began.

Day 1: 287 miles: Gresham to Medford, Oregon

pdedse screwed with this post 10-22-2008 at 10:22 PM
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Old 10-22-2008, 02:21 PM   #6
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Wednesday, Sept. 24: Day 2

After spending the morning catching up with our friend we looked for a repair solution for the melted saddle bag. Tent repair material and Shoe Goo seemed like it might do the trick but since the bag was still intact we decided to hit the road knowing we had a repair on hand if needed.

Still, we didn’t get away till around 2:00 with the simple goal of making it into California somewhere between Crescent City and Eureka along the coast, where we planned on camping for the night.

Lots of tidy farms dotted the southern Oregon countryside and soon we hit the proverbial fork in the road. Marc’s GPS said shortest rout lay to the left so we took it to avoid heading north to Grants Pass.

Our country road climbed then narrowed and then climbed some more. A few oversized logging trucks roaring down the mountain kept us on our toes and then the asphalt ended and the gravel began. I asked Marc how good his GPS was and he said it hadn’t let him down yet. 30 miles of mountain backcountry road later and we hit paved 46 near Oregon Caves Nat’l Monument and soon we were back on 199 heading for Crescent City.

It was getting dark and we were set on camping but had also decided we wanted seafood for dinner. Found a nice diner just past Crescent City and it was getting dark as we pulled away. By the time we found a beach site we had to set up tents under the cover of darkness. No rain, no wind, not even that cold. A good second day. Camera still not working! But Marc sent me these:

Looking for a campsite:


Finally, after much fiddling on my part, we're set up for the night.


My new blue tent cost only $25 but came with NO rain fly! Mental note: use gear you're already familiar with the next time! Something I knew, but didn't practice. The waves breaking drowns out any negative thoughts and we have no trouble falling asleep, unusual for me.

Day2: 130 miles; Medford, OR to Crescent City, CA

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Old 10-22-2008, 09:19 PM   #7
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Sounds like a very good trip, full of changes but keeping you guys riding. That is the adventurer spirit.


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Old 01-16-2009, 09:35 PM   #8
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http://i258.photobucket.com/albums/h...oSummer106.jpg

I wasn't flipping you off, I had to lift my leg over the bike because of the 3 inches of padding on my seat. Great report and great pictures. Hey, the offer is still on the table for the TAT. I will be leaving July 1st.
I really didn't feel like writing 2 trip reports so here is a link to my travel blog.
http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog...e1/1/tpod.html
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Old 01-16-2009, 11:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by macrosse
http://i258.photobucket.com/albums/h...oSummer106.jpg

I wasn't flipping you off, I had to lift my leg over the bike because of the 3 inches of padding on my seat.
3 inches of padding...likely story.

Quote:
Originally Posted by macrosse
Hey, the offer is still on the table for the TAT. I will be leaving July 1st.
Where will you be leaving from? I could 1) leave my bike with relatives in AZ or Colorado and wait for you or 2) ride all the way back to OR, then ride to meet you somewhere...
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Old 01-17-2009, 06:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdedse
3 inches of padding...likely story.



Where will you be leaving from? I could 1) leave my bike with relatives in AZ or Colorado and wait for you or 2) ride all the way back to OR, then ride to meet you somewhere...

I will be leaving Jellico TN July 1st. I met a guy on here so I have at least one riding partner and we are going to try to do about 200 miles a day. I'm guessing with bike maintenance, flat tires, and rest days, we might be riding through Trinidad Colorado area around....... the 17-18-23? I don't have a clue. I will keep you up to date if anything changes. I think it would be easier if you road out to meet us so you don't have to buy a plane ticket and HOPE we show up on time.
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Old 01-17-2009, 08:49 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by macrosse
I will be leaving Jellico TN July 1st. ...we might be riding through Trinidad Colorado area around....... the 17-18-23?...I think it would be easier if you road out to meet us so you don't have to buy a plane ticket and HOPE we show up on time.
Ok, because yeah, if I left my bike in Phoenix and then met up with you in July, that would mean missing a lot of riding in the intervening months. I do have my sportster, but I might sell it. Plus I don't want to leave the bike w/out running that long...again! I'll be thinking abou it...
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Old 01-23-2009, 11:42 PM   #12
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Well, nearly time to continue this trip. I leave Portland, OR for Puerto Vallarta on Tuesday, Jan 27. I'll spend the 28th getting the KLR650 ready and maybe do a test ride with Marc the 29th and 30th. Then I'll head N for Mazatlán and hope to cross over to Baja via the ferry.

Marc will continue the trip by heading south for Oaxaca for more language study.

I hope to spend about 10 days in Baja and meander north and at some point veer off the main road and head for the the east side, eventually will cross at Mexicali. Then it's head for Oregon and hope the weather isn't too cold!
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