ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Epic Ride Reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 06-26-2015, 01:27 PM   #1
Sigbaps OP
n00b
 
Joined: Apr 2015
Location: Sacramento, CA
Oddometer: 8
Talking Sacramento to Seattle Loop

Hello everyone! Ride report time!
I'd been a long-time lurker and finally made an account to request route options for this trip a few weeks back.

I've never been on a solo long-distance motorcycle trip before but it's been something I've wanted to do for quite some time. I figured I'd do a 99%-street ride for my first time out since I've got fairly little offroad experience and navigation options, and damn it if I get stuck out some middle of nowhere, by myself, with a ton of stuff strapped to my bike. In time I'd love to do a Moab trip, or head from Vegas to Los Angeles. Maybe next year.

We'll start with my bike. It's a 2007 DRZ-400 SM with quite a few mods:
17L Safari tank
Buell XB12 Headlight
Seat Concepts seat
Öhlins rear shock, RaceTech front suspension rework up front
FCR39 Carb
MRD-SSW Exhaust - quiet insert + spark arrestor installed
Kickstart kit
Tonn's Fabrication rear rack and skid plate
Other bits and bobs that aren't really worth mentioning.

Pic of the bike in its long-distance trim:


My trip would start me in my hometown of Sacramento, CA, heading west to Fort Bragg, CA, then taking Hwy 1 and 101 up towards my end goal in Seattle, WA. From there it's a trip through eastern Washington, Oregon, down into Nevada for the last stop in South Lake Tahoe for 4th of July. I'll be tent camping on the way and staying in hostels/hostel-style homes via AirBNB in the major cities I stopped in. All in all, it's a 2-week trip.

Google Maps screenshot for the first half - just a link since the image is very tall:
http://i.imgur.com/6o0pUXq.png

I'm currently in Portland, Oregon and the bike's in a shop getting an oil change so I'll knock everything up to this point out in the next couple of hours.
Will definitely keep updates posted as time and wi-fi permits. I also have a metric ton of video I need to trim and edit that I'll upload -sometime-.

I'm going to grab a rideshare to some coffee shop in town and get to work.
__________________
2007 DRZ-400 SM "Banana Slug"
Sigbaps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-26-2015, 08:41 PM   #2
Sigbaps OP
n00b
 
Joined: Apr 2015
Location: Sacramento, CA
Oddometer: 8
Thumb

The night before leaving I made sure I had everything I’d intended to bring with me. The kitchen counter and table were piled up with all of the essentials and non-essentials as I fumbled around, trying to find the best way to store what, and where.



I was accompanied by my friend on the first leg of the trip to Fort Bragg. We’d planned on leaving much earlier but packing dilemmas and the need to eat pushed our departure time back by a couple hours. GoPro rolling and music playing, we took the freeway out of town and headed west on Hwy 16 and merged onto Hwy 20, wrapping around the north side of Clear Lake. The temperature drop was extremely welcome, but short lived as we passed the lake and headed towards Ukiah where my phone overheated and shut down while we were having lunch and gassing up.

Found out my GoPro was positioned so it pointed right at the bill of my helmet. Some of the footage is usable but you can't really see much for most of the ride up there.

A photo of the bike as we exited the I5 freeway:


Friend’s Subaru WRX and my bike near Brooks, CA:


After Ukiah, we’d turned left onto Orr Springs road - fantastic stretch of twisty, less-than-travelled road between Ukiah and Mendocino. It was definitely one of those roads where you wish you didn’t have this massive gas tank and trunk on your bike so you’d feel a little better taking some of these turns as fast as you did. I adapted to the way the bike handled faster than I thought I would. The air once again became noticeably cooler as we cruised through Redwood Valley and neared Mendocino until we finally got our first glimpse of the ocean. Unfortunately my GoPro died before we actually hit the coast, so ocean footage will need to wait until I’d charged my camera in the hotel room.







We’d pulled in to the Motel 6 lot, unpacked, charged up the GoPro, and headed over to the beach.




We’d decided on going to dinner at a local brewery, but the kitchens had closed down right before we got there. The woman at the front counter recommended Piaci’s, a hole-in-the-wall pizza joint/bar that was surprisingly one of the best pizzas I’ve ever had. Well worth the wait and elbow bumping with your neighbor - it’s really small. We turned in for the night after that. My friend would be heading back home, and I’d start my solo ride north.
__________________
2007 DRZ-400 SM "Banana Slug"
Sigbaps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2015, 07:55 AM   #3
elkgrichard
Gnarly Adventurer
 
elkgrichard's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2010
Location: Rocklin, Cal.
Oddometer: 242
That bike looks familiar to me. I think I've seen it in the Rocklin/Loomis area on Taylor road. I'm in Rocklin.
elkgrichard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2015, 07:56 AM   #4
elkgrichard
Gnarly Adventurer
 
elkgrichard's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2010
Location: Rocklin, Cal.
Oddometer: 242
Enjoy the trip, I'm a local, Rocklin, Cal.

Amazing how much stuff you can pack on a bike.
elkgrichard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2015, 06:48 PM   #5
Sigbaps OP
n00b
 
Joined: Apr 2015
Location: Sacramento, CA
Oddometer: 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by elkgrichard View Post
Enjoy the trip, I'm a local, Rocklin, Cal.

Amazing how much stuff you can pack on a bike.
Thanks! And yeah I've done a fair amount of putting around in Rocklin. There's a good chance you've seen me around there. Cool to hear from a local!
__________________
2007 DRZ-400 SM "Banana Slug"
Sigbaps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2015, 07:28 PM   #6
Sigbaps OP
n00b
 
Joined: Apr 2015
Location: Sacramento, CA
Oddometer: 8
Little mishap on my route guidance last night so I didn't get to do much work on the report. Sorry about that.

I'm in Seattle now, at least! Love it here

Anyway, here's day 2:

After waking up I took the last shower I’d get for a couple days, slowly started packing up for the ride, and grabbed some French Toast from the diner around the corner.

My buddy and I decided to go look around at some tide pools before we split since low tide was fairly late in the morning. We got some excellent footage of a bunch of sea life and had a good time trudging around for the couple of hours we were there - another late start to the ride, but what the hell, I’m on vacation.




After leaving the tide pools, I found out my phone wouldn’t charge on my bike anymore. I have a USB adapter for my battery tender cable to charge my various electronics. No charge out of it whatsoever. I didn’t have a ton of time to troubleshoot, Gold Bluffs Beach was nearly 4+ hours away without gas or food stops. I ran into Radio Shack, bought some wire, connectors, electrical tape for later to do a fast repair job and headed north with my phone’s battery nearing 40%. Great.

Headed north from there, along Hwy 101, no music or anything to dull my attention to the wind noise in my helmet. It got hot and I got fairly dehydrated, so I stopped in Garberville for some gas, a lot of water, and some lunch. I took the Avenue of the Giants bypass to break the monotony of that stretch of 101 my route took me on. Absolutely beautiful. Snapped a couple pics of my bike on the road, and headed north still.




Picked a cool little rest stop for a pee and smoke break south of Patrick’s Point - Direct link since it’s a panorama:
http://i.imgur.com/oEfcuGg.jpg

Got a pretty gnarly headache as I rolled through Orick and made my turn down Davison Rd. to get into Gold Bluffs Beach, my destination for the night. I noticed a bunch of people standing on the side of the road looking at about 15-20 elk in the field next to the road. Snapped a picture and rode down quite possibly the only dirt road I may be on during this ride.



Gold Bluffs beach is right next to/in Prairie Creek State Park, CA and its landmark called Fern Canyon. Fern Canyon was used to film the scene in Jurassic Park: The Lost World.
More info here: http://www.redwoods.info/showrecord.asp?id=476

I never did get to go look at the actual Fern Canyon, but this road was something else. Complete tree canopy, very little sunlight through the trees, dense ferns on both sides of the road. Very reminiscent of The Lost World.

The campground was excellent as well! Small grounds, only about 20-ish sites if I remember, but my spot was an excellent choice.

About 100+ yards to the water, and in the opposite direction is a good 2-300 ft. sheer cliffside that Gold Bluffs gets its name from. Highly recommend this place if you’re into dry camping. Wowwwwww.



Unfortunately my headache prevented me from doing much that evening, I sat and looked at the beach while I scarfed down a Cliff bar and some jerky. Didn’t feel like running into town for some food. Took a nap and when I woke up and it was pitch black so I guess that’s it. Didn’t even use the firewood I bought, either.

Slept in later than I wanted to, but at least my headache was gone. Rode back out of the campground (which I did catch on the GoPro) and rode north again, this time to Beverly Beach State Park in Oregon! 1st state line crossing of the trip!
__________________
2007 DRZ-400 SM "Banana Slug"

Sigbaps screwed with this post 06-29-2015 at 10:37 AM
Sigbaps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2015, 08:09 PM   #7
Captain Frantic
Adventurer
 
Captain Frantic's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2013
Location: Seattle
Oddometer: 76
Excellent report so far, sigbaps! Being born and raised in northern California but now living in Seattle, I'm liking this. I never tire of the Pacific Coast. Thanks for bringing us along. I'm having flashbacks of bleary-eyed morning classes at Sierra College. ..
__________________
"To them, the bike is just garage clutter. To us, it's a loaded Beretta, a half-million in cash, and a forged passport under the floorboards." - Dan Walsh
Captain Frantic is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2015, 09:12 PM   #8
Padaca14
Someday Adventurer
 
Joined: Nov 2011
Location: Antelope CA.
Oddometer: 15
I'm in too, I live in Antelope and your doing a ride I want to do too.
Padaca14 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2015, 01:11 AM   #9
RedDogAlberta
High Plains Drifter
 
RedDogAlberta's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Oddometer: 6,246
Great stuff. Count me in.
__________________
I'd rather be dragging a club than clubbing in drag.
RedDogAlberta is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2015, 09:40 AM   #10
oobus
Gnarly Adventurer
 
oobus's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2010
Location: In the orchard
Oddometer: 258
Man you were fortunate to get a spot at Gold Bluff's, that place is always packed and no reservations.


Too bad you didn't go up to Fern Canyon, not much of a walk but it is fascinating!


I love the stretch of road from Orick to Gold Beach, beautiful and fun twisties if you don't get caught behind an RV.
oobus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2015, 12:07 PM   #11
Sigbaps OP
n00b
 
Joined: Apr 2015
Location: Sacramento, CA
Oddometer: 8
Sorry about the delays between updates, guys. Seattle kept me out super late every night I was there! I'm currently in South Lake Tahoe and just finished up part 3 of the report. Will post as soon as pics are finished uploading.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Frantic View Post
Excellent report so far, sigbaps! Being born and raised in northern California but now living in Seattle, I'm liking this. I never tire of the Pacific Coast. Thanks for bringing us along. I'm having flashbacks of bleary-eyed morning classes at Sierra College. ..
Thanks for the kind words, Cap. First ride report appears to be going smoothly, aside from the crazy delays between updates.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Padaca14 View Post
I'm in too, I live in Antelope and your doing a ride I want to do too.
Oh wow you're really close to me. I'm right off I80 at Elkhorn/Greenback near North highlands.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oobus View Post
Man you were fortunate to get a spot at Gold Bluff's, that place is always packed and no reservations.


Too bad you didn't go up to Fern Canyon, not much of a walk but it is fascinating!

I love the stretch of road from Orick to Gold Beach, beautiful and fun twisties if you don't get caught behind an RV.
Kinda surprised you're saying that, oobus. I booked my reservation through reserveamerica.com close to 2 weeks in advance, no problem. Maybe it was because it was for just the one night? Yeah I got stuck behind a couple of cars on that stretch of road. The road looked like a ton of fun though. I was pretty jazzed to see Fern Canyon, too, but I'll definitely be coming back when I can spend more time there.
__________________
2007 DRZ-400 SM "Banana Slug"
Sigbaps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2015, 12:18 PM   #12
Sigbaps OP
n00b
 
Joined: Apr 2015
Location: Sacramento, CA
Oddometer: 8
Day 3!

First stop was in Crescent City for some food and to try to figure out what the deal was with my phone charger. Rode to the Auto Zone in town and started pulling the plastic off the bike, checking the fuse just in case. It was blown, so I pulled a replacement 30A fuse off the shelf in the store and it worked like a charm. Perfect! I stopped in to CC Diner at the recommendation of the Auto Zone staff and ordered probably one of the best bacon avocado burgers I’ve ever had. It was really good!



From there it was a very short ride to the Oregon Border. Nothing spectacular since it was inland, but this was one of the parts of the trip where I felt actual progress being made instead of Portland or Seattle being some annoyingly long distance away.

Gotta say, too, that California coast has nothing on Oregon coast. Oregon coast felt and looked, to me, like what a coast should be. Beaches were stunning, and the stretches were you were on the water AND in the forest were something else, too. Absolutely gorgeous.

Didn’t make too many stops since I’d lost so much time in Crescent City.

Had to pull over and take a couple pictures in Gardiner. Wow. Another panorama. Direct link provided:
http://i.imgur.com/39Golwr.jpg

Also stopped to stretch at Cape Perpetua…


…And finally a final stop in Waldport to call Mom.


Last destination was in Newport for some clam chowder and a beer at Mo’s. Excellent stuff.


After that I headed into Beverly Beach State Park to set up camp for the night. It’s a nice really nice place with excellent beach access and scenery. Yet another place I’ll need to stay at longer. Next time. Met a couple other riders there, we talked a bit before I headed to the beach to watch the sunset since I missed last night’s.
Here’s camp for the night:


And some shots of the sunset:



Met up with one of the other riders afterwards, where we talked for a bit over a couple beers by the campfire before I headed to bed. A good day!

Next up is Portland!

To be honest there won’t be much riding done for the next couple posts since I stayed in Portland and Seattle for a few days. Just a heads up.
__________________
2007 DRZ-400 SM "Banana Slug"
Sigbaps is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 11:10 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2015