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Old 04-17-2011, 01:54 AM   #31
lonesoldier84 OP
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Climbing higher now:







This was pretty sweet:













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Old 04-17-2011, 01:55 AM   #32
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Quite cold tbh:

















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Old 04-17-2011, 01:58 AM   #33
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The roads were still fun though:













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Old 04-17-2011, 02:00 AM   #34
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Oregon just feels so god damned epic. It's so lush and fresh. The roads are clean. The traffic is light. I loved it. I can't wait to go back. Oregon > California in a lot of ways.















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Old 04-17-2011, 02:01 AM   #35
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Just perfect.

















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Old 04-17-2011, 02:03 AM   #36
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I stopped off to fuel up. I glanced at a map. I thought to myself….okay, you’ve had the sport portion of the trip….now it’s time to do some REAL adventuring. Can an FZ6 cross a river?? Let’s hope so! Haha. I figured the "retarded" bit of the scoreline would probably take a decisive lead but whatever, let’s do it.

So I looked at the map and tried to find the most interesting thing to set as a target.
"Oregon Caves"….no marked roads leading up to it….sounds about right. You’re extreme…you’re superman….you’re King-fucking-Kong. Go for it.

Well, the first bit up to the Caves was all paved. It was about a lane and a half wide all the way up the big, big climb. The road was WICKED. It was not engineered the way highways usually are. It was like someone had just randomly paved wherever the hell they could. There were decreasing-radius off-cambre chicanes all over the place with some linking up to 5 tight corners together. It was brilliant. I was beaming with pride when I got out the other end. OTP sessions FTW! Haha. Thanks Justin! I’d probably be neck-deep in a tree-trunk if it weren’t for the lessons. No doubt in my mind.

So, here’s where it gets interesting. I make it to the top of the paved bit and see a sign that says "no camping beyond this point"….I scoff at it... "Ha! I’m extreme….I’m superman….I’m King-fucking-Kong. That stuff doesn’t apply to me."

I pass a hotel/chateau at the top. I don’t consider going in for even a second. I carry onwards and upwards. I see a fireroad darting up a stupidly steep incline. Yes! There, we go. The path is laying itself before me. I have only to follow it.

I start the climb which seems to go on forever. I worry about letting off the throttle because with the loose rocks under the bike I know I will slide and fall that’s how steep the incline is. It levels out. I stop to drink some water. I packed some food this time around so I have a bite to eat. Nothing is going to get in the way this time. I have my 500-gallon fuel tank reserve with me as well.



















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Old 04-17-2011, 02:05 AM   #37
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I come up to a fork in the road. One road has a sign post saying "This will take you to such and such area via such and such road" and the other road has a sign post with a car symbol with an ‘X’ through it. It says "this road is not maintained and travel is not recommended".

LOL….not recommended? Maybe not for others. But me? I’m extreme….I’m superman….I’m King-fucking-Kong. Carry on, full-speed ahead!
Well, it wasn’t quite full-speed since the road really did turn quite bloody nasty. Quite a few parts needed careful picking-through. I even got kinda airborne at one point (or it felt like I did, haha I probably didn’t get so much as an inch off the ground). Anyway, I kept on going. I was just on my way to find some vision of the most epic camping spot ever I had in my head. But it never came. An hour and a half went by and all I was getting was more of the same. There was a big drop to one side and a big climb up the other side. There was no level areas to set up camp or any way off this road/trail. This is why you research things. God damn it. I turned around.

I knew it would start to get dark in a while and I didn’t want to get caught up here in the dark. Navigating through the mess would be pretty shitty in the night. So I picked up the pace a little bit. At one point I thought to myself, keep an eye out for wildlife….you’re going too quick you won’t be able to stop you will have to dodge.

Having just been through this area I had the rough bits pretty well mapped out in my head. I was making great time. I came through a straight section and saw something move out of the corner of my eye. A bear!! A fucking grizzly bear!! Holy shit! It started running down the side of the road and started moving across but was not cutting straight across the road. It was weaving a little bit. I aimed for where it was and it shot across the road. The bike fish-tailed quite a bit but straightened out. Holy shit I can’t believe I fucking dodged it! It was a bear cub but not a small one but definitely not an adult yet.

Now this is the part where the internet is bad for you. I had been paranoid about bears and read a lot of bear cubs and mama bears. So instantly at this point my brain snapped to "holy shit you just shot between a bear cub and the mama bear…..the mama bear is going to be chasing you!"

And this all happened within a split second.

-bear darts out
-I dodge
-I think holy shit is there a mama bear behind it??

I decide I’m not going to stick around. And thanks to the internet I remember adult grizzly bears can run up to 60kph in the wild. So I conciously decide to roll on the throttle and pick it up to 65kph…..just to be safe.

But as I am searching my mirrors for an angry Sarah Palin, the road disappears. My bike clips the rut in a way that has me land almost sideways. This time I did get airborne for damn sure. The bike snaps back the other way and I go flying off and do a nose-dive and face-plant into god knows where.

It’s quiet.

It’s black.

I try to stand up.

I fall.

I get up again.

Why can’t I see anything?

Light starts to bleed back into my world.

There’s a bike. That’s my bike.

There’s a bunch of shit scattered everywhere. That’s my shit.

I grab hold of a tree since my world is spinning, spinning and spinning some more.

Then….I remember…."HOLY SHIT YOU’RE BEING CHASED BY A FUCKING BEAR!!"

Haha

Ok, so it turns out I wasn’t actually being chased by a bear. But at that moment in time I was dazed and confused and was CONVINCED it was either chasing me or about to be chasing me. I looked around and I couldn’t see a bear. But I couldn’t really see anything. My eyes couldn’t track anything. Everything was spinning, spinning, and spinning some more. I grab as much of my shit as I can and stuff it back into the bike under the tie straps loosely. The plastic is coming off I just kick it back out of the forks. I try and fail to get the bike up and then on a second heave get it back up.

I jump on.
It won’t start.
I’m in panic-mode.
GO GO GO mofo. Get a move on.
Get the hell out of dodge. This is not where you want to be.
You can’t see and your bike won’t start, but just roll away from here. I roll the bike down the incline and it starts rolling on it’s own. Then remember those crazy steep inclines? Well, what a great time to hit one. I try to slow down but since I am only barely able to walk I complete lack the ability to threshold brake. I am only building up speed. I lock the rear and think to myself, "right, here we go again…."

I fall and the bike falls on top of me. This time I’m awake for it. And it hurts. I lay there for a bit and think to myself, "ok, calm the fuck down….you are still okay right now, but if you don’t get a hold of yourself you will find yourself in a situation you can’t deal with. You don’t have cell reception and nobody is coming down this road so it’s all you."
I get out from the under the bike and take a moment to get everything together. My leg bloody hurts. I see some blood but I can still walk. I get the bike started and very, very slowly make my way down after getting my wits back. After what seems like forever, I make it back to the hotel/chateau.

Now as I pull into the parking lot the adrenaline is still surging. Holy shit man, you made it! That was close. And you’re still relatively uninjured. I start to feel an immense sense of relief. I walk up to the front door of the Chateau. I throw open the door. Literally everyone in the quite full lobby turns to stare. Civilized folk are enjoying glasses of Sherry and Cognac sitting around a piano. A big hairy indian man throws open the door covered from head to toe in white sand. I am sure at least a couple of them thought to themselves, "Oh God, this is how it ends….the terrorists have found us!" haha

I limp up to reception and try to decide if I want an ambulance or a room. I think about it and decide to get a room.

She ain't shiny no more...poor girl.

















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FZ6 vs North America:
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Old 04-17-2011, 02:06 AM   #38
lonesoldier84 OP
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A fellow helps me with my stuff. But the only room available is on the 4th floor and there is no elevator. I haul half my stuff up there. I think only about a hot ass shower. I get into the room, there’s only a tub. One of those old-school tubs. I think, no worries. A hot bath will do. I slowly peel down and see what looks like a giant ass where my hip used to be. Oh god….now you’ve done it.

I work my way back down and reconsider my choice and decide I need it scanned. An ambulance starts driving out but the ETA is like 2 hours. I crash on the couch for a bit and wait. Paramedics come and look at my helmet and decide I should have a number of other scan as well.

I go to the hospital (2 hour drive again….coming on 5 hours since the crash now…the bloody bear cub is probably off playing with his friends).

I get everything checked out and am fine essentially. The ass on my hip is a giant hematoma. It’s like two grapefruits pinched together. I get a place to spend the night. Apparently the hospital has a full sized house they let people stay in sometimes. It’s right beside the hospital. I go inside. There’s brownies! Fresh brownies on the table! Home-made and everything. I destroy them. I destroy a number of other treats in the area. I sneak them into my room like a thief in the night. I eat, I pass the hell out in the most comfortable bed I have ever been in in my life. The next morning I run into probably the most awesome guy I’ve ever met. He’s eating in a diner I’m eating at. I guess I was looking like a ragged and stray dog limping around, but he asks me "what the hell happened to you?". I explain briefly and he gets the hint that I need to find a way back up to the caves. He lives near there and so he offers to give me a ride. I take him up on it and off we go.

Now, what the hell do I do about my bike? The forks are shoved out of place and the bike is in tatters. I seriously consider having it shipped back home and taking a bus back. This is probably one of the most depressing thoughts ever. He says he knows someone who might be able to throw it back together a little bit. That night we all have dinner at the Chateau and his friend takes the bike back to his place.

2-3 days at the Chateau...it was nice. I was low on funds and my leg was bloody hurting like a mofo. Just dangling it to the floor it throbbed like hell. The ride back was going to be a real grind. Couldn't even do the touristy tour of the caves on account of my leg/hip. But the staff there will always be remembered for their tremendous kindness. Laura especially. She made sure I was well looked after. I was immensely grateful for that.













I highly recommend you check the place out. Seriously. The staff are beyond amazing and friendly, and the food is superb. The area is extremely peaceful and the caves are pretty sweet. The Chateau near Cave Junction in the Oregon Caves National Park/Monument.



A couple days later I head down and pick the bike up. Keep in mind this guy has been driving up and down to and from the Caves since he doesn’t actually live THAT close to the Chateau. I tell him I can’t keep imposing on his kindness but he has none of it.

I get rolling out of the Caves and after having lost a big chunk of time, still have a decent amount of time left. I very briefly consider going the direct route back home, but dismiss it pretty quickly. I have been shit-kicked, but I’m not throwing in the towel yet. I can barely get my leg over the seat and it hurts like hell especially with all the bumps, etc.
The route I take home is up through the primary highways then off into Olypmia peninsula where I will take a ferry over to Victoria then work through the Coquihala and on through Salmon Arm, Revelstoke, then home. Stretches of a couple hours push my stamina now. But I grind through it and even though I am not enjoying myself as much as I was earlier on the trip, I am still pleased I am out riding.

You're god damned right I posed for this! Timer haha. Go to hell I was taking a break. Safety glasses for the win though to be honest. Now the question you need to ask is did I have these packed ALL the way from home.....or did I buy them on the road?? HAHA


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FZ6 vs North America:
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showt...php?p=15686437

lonesoldier84 screwed with this post 04-17-2011 at 03:02 AM
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Old 04-17-2011, 02:08 AM   #39
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My rule of thumb that "you will never regret the decision to go on a nice ride" is still serving me well.

I spend the night in Victoria, then spend another night in Kamloops. The final stretch I make in one big go and make it back home one day ahead of schedule. By the way, Olypmia Peninsula is very nice. It's a nice isolated stretch that is very welcoming.

From whence I came:



Sun is setting on the trip...



I knew Edmonton was getting closer, and even though my leg was throbbing like a congo line of elves was trapped inside, I did feel a bit shitty that the trip was drawing to a close. This was now mid-August and with a busted up bike and hip and no money....Riding Season 2010 was definitely drawing to a close with this trip.



Time to get rolling again...not far now.





-"Staring at the world through my rear view. Just looking back at the world....from another level. You know what I mean?
They got me staring at the world through my rearview."-



During the final stretch I thought to myself about all the ways I could have done things better. There were MANY things I learned not just about riding itself and riding trips, but about so many other things both motorcycle and non-motorcycle related as well. But all things considered, and taken as a whole, I was immensely pleased with the trip. I tried to go over the trip in this ride report in some amount of detail because re-living it is reminding me just how awesome it was and how I really should make the effort to get down to California again this season. But even though I wrote a bunch, there is still so much that gets left out. There are countless small wonders that go into every day of riding and that make up each destination and checkpoint. Maybe that’s the thing that’s so brilliant about riding trips. You get a fresh start and over a couple weeks or month or months you get to live a complete life. A beginning, a middle, and an end make up the timeline and you are tied to nothing. You are a free man with no past, and no future. The trip itself becomes a world within a world and a life within a life. You are your best self.

Just watch out for bears.

I often tell people that everyone, and especially every man, should do one wickedly long riding trip solo in their lives. Even if you never do it again, you will not regret it.

You will never regret the decision to just…..go for a ride.



Final score:

FZ6: 5
West Coast: 4
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Old 04-17-2011, 02:32 PM   #40
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You really believe in your sig, don't you?

Glad you made it through in one piece, though now you realize you are going to have to go on a Revenge Tour, right?
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Old 04-17-2011, 04:38 PM   #41
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wow what an adventure, you did a great job documenting it.

watch out for those bears i almost had one take me out on my old bike a few years ago lol.
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Old 04-17-2011, 06:40 PM   #42
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Great RR, Thanks for sharing. I think the FZ6 looks pretty trick with those handlebars.
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Old 04-17-2011, 07:16 PM   #43
lonesoldier84 OP
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Lol, thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by xcgates View Post
You really believe in your sig, don't you?

Glad you made it through in one piece, though now you realize you are going to have to go on a Revenge Tour, right?

Indeed I do. Another quote that just hit the spot when I heard it was:

"Never trade the thrills of living for the security of existence. "

And I am of course going on a revenge tour. This year it wasn't in the budget but next year I want to stretch down into central Mexico before I have to turn around. Similar path on the way down and back.

And I am in the process of picking up a mount more suited to the task....a 650GS if everything goes smoothly....
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Old 04-17-2011, 07:55 PM   #44
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This was awesome!!!! Way to put that FZ6 to use! Nice photography.

And yes, maybe an 'adventure' type bike would be more suited to your riding.......
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Old 04-17-2011, 08:35 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NDTransplant View Post
This was awesome!!!! Way to put that FZ6 to use! Nice photography.

And yes, maybe an 'adventure' type bike would be more suited to your riding.......
Lol, yeah, but I hate sacrificing sport riding for the tarmac bits. There are some wickedly fun twisty bits all the way down and back up that west coast.

Maybe I need an FJR and a GS and just do two trips a season instead of one?

I should start a telethon....donate money now. Operators are standing by.

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