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Old 06-20-2012, 08:21 PM   #1
Desert Dave OP
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Enjoying the Moment...My Take on Riding Nor Cal

I suppose this is about as close as I'll ever get to a blog. I actually tried this once before back in 2005 with a thread in Ride Reports "Where did you ride today" that was for posting a couple of pics from your day rides that didn't have enough material for a full report. It had a nice three year run until it fizzled out and fell into the archives. Well now that everyone is doing it I'll try again instead of loading up all of the photo threads like I have been. Feel free to add anything relevant. This is just for fun....but then that's why I do most everything.

So here we go. I decided to get serious about this around the holidays, and six months later something is actually happening! I have a little more time right now as the riding season is over ("but wait", you say, "it's the first day of Summer". I know, I can explain more on that later) So I thought I'd start with a quick recap since last winter, at least get some photos up to get this thing rolling and see if anybody is interested in reading it.

I feel so fortunate to live where I do. Many of my favorite places to ride are right here in my backyard. Now I'm not a world traveler, and in these forums I haven't really done anything impressive as far as miles, but I have covered the western half of the US and Canada pretty good. After spending years rushing around to see the next big thing and get somewhere new, I'm finally taking the time to slow down and experience what is around me instead blasting through it. Some days have turned into 14 hour rides where I only go two or three hundred miles, that's a lot of time off of the bike. But getting off the bike more has opened a new dimension to my riding. What used to be an escape from reality has become a reality of its' own.

My relatively new riding style fits perfect with my newest hobby, photography. I've been "serious" (if I can call it that) for almost three years now, learning and practicing all with the goal of trying to share my experiences visually with some feeling, instead of just a random shot. I know I'm not alone as there are many accomplished photogs on this site that understand the passion of combining these two hobbies. Besides I quit racing and my riding is honestly becoming a bit less adventurous (risky) so I needed something new to push my limits.

So in the following pages I hope to share my backyard with you guys. Lots of Sierras as that is where I love to be, some desert and some coast as well. I'll even try to show some of my favorite areas in the central valley that may change some riders idea that this is just a wasteland. Mostly day and weekend rides.

Here's a few photos of where I rode last winter. We had an amazing winter (it was a drought) that left areas usually inaccessible open until late January.

Ever ride Tioga Pass in Yosemite in January? I'm sure a few of you did after this year.







A very Frozen Ellery Lake.





How about (yours truly) standing on a frozen mosquito lake on Christmas eve?





Strange to see some of my favorite spots on the passes frozen with so little or no snow, definitely a unique winter.











I'm sure I'll be posting quite a few photos from the Mt. Hamilton area as this is a regular ride for me. The top is always wonderful when on the edge of a storm. Whenever I'm looking for landscape photos from the road I always try to compose a shot quickly if I hear a bike coming.





This one here is just everything that is right about motorcycling. Enjoying the moment. I have no idea who this is, but he was out doing his thing while I did mine.





Enter the Tenere. My new ride as of January and I've been taking photos of it like a parent would a newborn for the first six months. Many of these have been posted in the Tenere threads, but I'm sure many of you skip those. So here's a recap of my life with the Tenere so far. As I add more to this thread I'll take the time to tell more of the stories behind the photos.

First ride, had to get a photo as it would never be this clean again! And it did rain pretty hard later that day so I was right. Did give me a good chance to try out the traction control though




Second ride was weeknight after work. I was having so much fun sliding it on some local Delta dirt levees that I almost missed an awesome moment. This is why I always carry a camera on the bike.



Picking up a new ride in the middle of winter means having to deal with icy roads, but that's part of the adventure, right?





My local road



Just a good memory of a ride where my friend on the RC51 tricked me into thinking I was on a sportbike. Rode way faster than I should have, but learned a lot about the bikes limits


Hetch Hetchy "the other Yosemite" in winter.



A close up of Wapama Falls across the lake



Riding the eastern sierras before the passes opened back up





And back in the high sierra this spring



Discovering an old gold mine stamp mill a few weeks ago. Been by it hundreds of times and I still find new things.









More to come!!
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Desert Dave screwed with this post 04-15-2014 at 09:37 PM
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Old 06-20-2012, 10:25 PM   #2
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Wow !!
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Old 06-20-2012, 10:47 PM   #3
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You don't know me and I don't know you. However your wonderful photos make it clear we love the same things! Your photos are alive and really capture the spirit of the bike and ride... Good work The Triumph rider grinning ear to ear in the snow and cold is classic.
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:18 AM   #4
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You don't know me and I don't know you. ..... The Triumph rider grinning ear to ear in the snow and cold is classic.
Well Hi, I'm Dave, now you know me.

Yeah, I love that photo with the Triumph rider. I had already framed the scene wishing someone was there to get a photo of me riding through it when I heard his bike coming. I couldn't predict the look on his face, which is what makes the scene so special. Nothing like sharing a moment with a passing stranger on a chilly mountain top.
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:21 AM   #5
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Thanks for sharing and looking forward to more
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Old 06-21-2012, 06:20 AM   #6
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Nice.
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Old 06-21-2012, 06:54 AM   #7
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DD-Great stuff! Looks like the 'hobbies' are working out pretty darn good. The Tenere looks gooooood.

You really got me on the riding Tioga in winter. I never knew this could be done. Did this happen by happenchance? Or are you monitoring the Cal Trans site? What gives?

I sure enjoyed the post, looking forward to more shots of the Sierra with summer thunder storms coming. Beautiful work.
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Old 06-21-2012, 07:31 AM   #8
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Nice photos and great ride report. Mt Hamilton and Del Pureto Cyn were a favorite ride over the hill when I lived in Morgan Hill. I have been lusting over the Teneres since they came out, so I will be watching this to see how you like the bike. Thanks
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Old 06-21-2012, 08:06 AM   #9
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If this is your blog, I am subscribed. I haven't been there in decades, but I know those roads well. I grew up in Hayward and lived in the South Bay until the 80's. Raced MX and D36 enduros all over those parts. But I did a lot of touring too. Mount Hammy to Livermore was a nice ride. Any of the passes over the Sierras. Particularly those with all the granite.

I have a son who is moving to SF next month. He's got a bunch of motorcycles so I'll get a chance to revisit those roads again. Thanks for the thread and pics.
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Old 06-21-2012, 08:07 AM   #10
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Awesome

Great pics. I too live in California and am always finding new places to see. I realize there's so much more to see too. The quality of your pics make me want to call in sick for the next week and go exploring some more.

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Old 06-21-2012, 08:21 AM   #11
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Great photos and fabulous bike (then I am biased). What a wonderful place to ride.
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Old 06-21-2012, 06:03 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by samthg View Post

You really got me on the riding Tioga in winter. I never knew this could be done. Did this happen by happenchance? Or are you monitoring the Cal Trans site? What gives?

I sure enjoyed the post, looking forward to more shots of the Sierra with summer thunder storms coming. Beautiful work.
I love riding the passes as late as I can in the year, I've never understood the thought that the high country is for summer only. I've often been on one of the passes as the storm is coming in that will close it for winter, usually at some point in November. There's been a few times I've ridden them into December. This last winter was the first time I'd ever had the chance to do it in January, apparently the only time in the roads history. They did close and then re-open with the lack of snow fall. Yes, I watch the Caltrans site close as well as the Yosemite reports. Rode through Tioga this year right after a microburst toppled hundreds of trees like matchsticks, a really awesome display of power.

I watch the weather close as well. I often don't bother with the Sierras in summer on the "good" days, but if I see a storm approaching I make plans. Riding the edge of a summer storm is far more exciting and memorable, and yes sometimes it means putting up with wet, hail or even snow but to me that's part of being IN the scene instead of just looking at it. So you'll probably see a few photos from summer storms this year.

Here's a few from last summer

The view from Monitor pass that everbody knows is so much more spectacular on a day like this








The fire lookout is so much more vulnerable when it's about to be engulfed by threatening thunder heads




From Memorial day weekend one year ago, I knew the storm was coming but I just had to go. I got so caught up in the photo opportunities that by the time I realized the snow was starting to stick it was really time to get down the hill.

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Old 06-21-2012, 06:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WRC51 View Post
. Mt Hamilton and Del Pureto Cyn were a favorite ride over the hill when I lived in Morgan Hill. I have been lusting over the Teneres since they came out, so I will be watching this to see how you like the bike. Thanks
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I haven't been there in decades, but I know those roads well. I grew up in Hayward and lived in the South Bay until the 80's.
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Originally Posted by RZRob View Post
I too live in California and am always finding new places to see. I realize there's so much more to see too.

RZ Rob
This is what I was hoping for, locals and past locals to enjoy what we have right here! I always like hearing others experiences at places that are special to me. I expect that plenty of riders will recognize many of these scenes and maybe the photos will take you there for a minute.
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Old 06-21-2012, 06:12 PM   #14
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Great photos and fabulous bike (then I am biased). What a wonderful place to ride.
Thanks, Yes and Yes.

The Tenere is at the 6 month mark, usually about when the newness wears off and I realize if the bike is a keeper or not and so far I get more excited about it all of the time. Almost the perfect ride for what I do these days.

Ans yes, what a wonderful place to ride. I still feel spoiled everyday. Glad I can share a little view with someone on the other side of the world
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Old 06-22-2012, 07:07 AM   #15
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Fabulous photos, Dave. Very impressive composition! Quite inspiring.

Onward...

HF

p.s. glad to finally see knobbies on an ST. Was beginning to think them too fragile
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