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Old 08-25-2007, 05:53 PM   #1
Jean-Luc OP
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Location: San Francisco, USA
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Chasing Summer

Bombay's pub in Dawson City

Beautiful and warm day. A girl playing piano. The whole town is still sleepy, like if everyone was recovering from an hangover. No, that's just me.

I've been procrastinating for too long, I need too start this thread! It's the first time that I’ll write a ride report while traveling and it’s so hard
. Riding most of the day, when we stop there seems to be always something better to do than sitting in front of a computer. Oh well, we’ll do our best…

(longish prologue)

Long ago when I signed up to AdvRider I remember entering in my profile for Dream ride: ‘South America to Patagonia’. Over the years I updated the profile for new bikes and such but the ‘dream’ stayed the same.

Lately I was starting to think that it would stay a dream for ever…

Then bad news happened: my company was being bought by a much bigger one and layoffs would occur. Stressful times, especially because I liked my job and team very much. But it could also be an opportunity! After a lot of thinking and discussion with my wife and friends we decided that it was worth taking the risk so I volunteered for the severance package. I will be thankful all my life to my wife for supporting me on this adventure!

Long story short, I planned to leave in a 6-months trip that would go from San Francisco to Prudhoe Bay and then after reaching the Artic Ocean, set the compass to the opposite direction and ride to Ushuaia. Yes, I’m aware that Alaska is not the most direct way to Patagonia but it was very appealing to me to do the Americas from tip to tip.

Being able to find the time and money to do such a trip is a rare opportunity so finding someone having that same opportunity at the same time to come along is really improbable. I knew however that I could join R-dubb and Eduardo who were planning a ride from Quito to Patagonia starting end of November.

A few days after making my decision “official” (that’s back in March) I received a call from R-dubb having drinks at Zeitgeist for an AdvRider gathering. I had missed the thread but hey, time for a little detour from my commute and here I am amongst a dozen or so AdvRiders. Obviously, quite excited, I shared with them my new project. Most were enthusiastic about such a trip but that’s to be expected from AdvRiders! However, Teryk was even more passionate than the others and made it clear that he would love to tag along. At this point, after a couple of beers and the novelty of the news I didn’t know what to think about his real commitment for such a project.

I have known Teryk for years and we had some memorable rides together. However, in the last years he became more passionate about bicycling and training for IronMan so he had no time left for motorcycle trips. We ended up seeing each other scarcely and it was pure luck that I had met him at Zeitgeist after so long. Anyway, I knew that he would be a great riding buddy so we decided to see how that could work.
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Old 08-25-2007, 06:09 PM   #2
sittin' down
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Joined: Oct 2001
Location: Cascadia
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Why am I chasing summer? Because I can.

If you want the long version, I'll tell you about how I first fell in love with adventure riding. I bought a one owner, pristine R100 GS because I liked the look. I found the BMW-GS mailing list. Folks like cRAsH, JL and Santa populated that list and I got a taste for how much fun adventure riding could be. I went on a ride with some of the original advrider inmates and came home with my beautiful bike dented and leaking oil.

I was hooked.

I began planning an epic South American adventure that kept getting pushed off. First work, then a motorcycle accident. In 2005 I quit my job and gave up my apartment and was finally going to do it. I was 2 weeks from departure. Bags packed. I got a call from the lawyer handling my motorcycle accident case and was told I couldn't leave the country.

I got a job, found a place to live, got a girlfriend and once again the trip was on-hold.

Flash forward to 3 months ago when I ran into JL in Zeitgeist, a cool bar in SF. JL told me about his trip and drunken logic had me decide to quit my job and join him. Morning logic had me questioning that decision with thoughts of responsibility and resume building and the like. That day at work the most amazing thing happened. The non-profit I work for lost one of their largest contracts. To help them make up the budget shortfall I, selfless guy that I am, offered to take an unpaid leave.

I have the wonderful opportunity to chase summer and come back to my job when I return.
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Old 08-25-2007, 06:49 PM   #3
Jean-Luc OP
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Day 1 - August 16th - California

It’s 5am and I can’t sleep anymore. I’m tired though since we’ve been prepping the bikes until late last night. But between the jetlag (I just came back from France) and the excitement it’s impossible to go back to sleep.

Today is THE day, the start of a big adventure, but for San Francisco it’s just a normal foggy summer day. Turkish who has been staying at home, plays the paparazzi for us. Turkish is actually planning to join us for the South leg of the trip, from SF to Patagonia, but that’s a different story.

Map, cigars (thanks SashaPave!),,, we're all set!

Ready, GO!

When planning the route I’ve tried to find the best compromise between having a fun ride while making time to arrive North early enough in the season. So for our Californian leg it was a mix of 101 then the twisty 128 and the 1 along the coast.

Beautiful, but we took very few pictures

We have ground to cover and California is our background so we'll take more pics later on.

Lunch while keeping an eye on our shinning bikes. The weather is awesome and we're so excited to be finally gone after the rush of the last days.

I'm already testing if the "tanker" system works . The huge tank of Teryk's 640 will certainly be helpful in remote areas.

A couple of riding pictures. Please don't drop the camera the first day !

For whatever reason we wanted to reach Oregon today. The planned small routes didn't always go through...

We ended the day pretty late in Grant Pass where we found a camp close to a river.
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Old 08-25-2007, 07:12 PM   #4
Karen Smith
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You guys rock!! Have a fantastic ride J-L!!
AKA "Label Maker" - Bumfucked Hillbillies MC
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Old 08-25-2007, 07:41 PM   #5
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Joined: Jun 2007
Location: Tabasco, Mexico
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Seems that the starts aligned perfectly for you guys... be safe, have tank loads of fun, take many pics, and keep us informed...

just wondering what exactly is the "tanker" system?
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Old 08-25-2007, 09:13 PM   #6
Bug Sister
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This is going to be fun to watch. Ride on and be safe.
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Old 08-25-2007, 09:19 PM   #7
kootenay kid
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OK this is going to be good. Ride safe and keep posting. We will be watching your progress closely. You are living my dream.
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Old 08-25-2007, 09:51 PM   #8
D Boon!
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This is going to be a good one. Better get in at the beginning.
Thunderbird 1 - '14 BMW F800GS ADV
"Love comes in spurts!"--Richard Hell
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Old 08-25-2007, 10:34 PM   #9
USMC Infantry
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Old 08-26-2007, 01:07 AM   #10
Back in S. Korea
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Old 08-26-2007, 01:19 AM   #11
Awaiting Baby...
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Location: Sydney - North
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mmm Popcorn and dreamrides, what a combo... There goes Sunday night...
Mmmm Sherbert

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Old 08-26-2007, 03:38 AM   #12
Local Yokel
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Originally Posted by Katsumoto
just wondering what exactly is the "tanker" system?
Bigger fuel tank on the 640 Adv, so when the 950 runs out, I assume they'll siphon some fuel across from the 640 to the 950 to reach the next fuel stop

Sounds like a great ride, JL

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Old 08-26-2007, 04:10 AM   #13
Gnarly Adventurer
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This is the good stuff!! Can't wait to hear it all.
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Old 08-26-2007, 04:20 AM   #14
who's yer daddy??
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can't wait !!
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Old 08-26-2007, 10:42 AM   #15
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Location: Cascadia
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Help, we're starving here

Please send food

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