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Old 04-11-2013, 08:12 AM   #1
Raoul Duke OP
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My Mom is Terminally Ill - Where should we ride? Please help!

Ok guys -

Here's the deal (I'm going to keep this brief):

My mother was recently diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer (a lifetime non-smoker). It is serious. One thing she's wanted to do with me for several years is take a little motorcycle trip. NOW is the time.

Originally (like a week ago) the plan was to get the family together for a vacation in Colorado in June and then for she and I to rent a bike and enjoy that great state for a few days. I've done a fair amount of road riding there and know she would enjoy it. I've also ridden good amounts of the west in general (except Cali).

Unfortunately I am no longer as confident (or willing to gamble) that she will be in sufficient health or have sufficient energy if we wait until June.

I would like to make this happen within the next four weeks or so. Here's what I'm looking for from you guys: Tell me where I can take her to have a GREAT riding/relaxing vacation.

General criteria:

-Fly/rent/ride (we live in Iowa)
-Continental US
-Weather needs to be fairly warm (like 75+) within the next 3-4 weeks
-2-3 days of riding
-Not looking to rough it at all
-No traffic/navigation that is too hectic/stressful. I don't want to be fighting LA traffic or checking maps/GPS every 30 minutes. Keep it simple and low key.
-Daily riding time not excessive - maybe a few hours (I can do 20 hours on the bike - she can't)
-Would not be oppposed to staying in same place every night and just doing little day trips (that might actually be preferable)

If there is any place on the Internet where people can help me I know this is it.

Thanks in advance. I promise a ride report.
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Old 04-11-2013, 08:19 AM   #2
Gale B.T.
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I can totally understand your feelings and plans. This part of Colorado is now in a blanket of snow, our warmer weather has taken a short break but will be back. Great scenery around here all the time.

Your situation may call for a side car ride, the Ural dealer in the Phoenix /Flagstaff area is super nice and has offered my wife and I the use of a hack for a day to trip around the area just to try out the hack.

So if you are interested I can locate this dealer and get you the contact # , email .
your call
Vaya Con Dios

gale,,,, pagosa
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Old 04-11-2013, 08:41 AM   #3
DSM8
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Central Ca might work out for you.

Plenty of vineyards etc around Napa valley or even Cambria.

From Cambria you have great accommodations, the coastal route to explore, wine tasting, Hurst Castle.

I think you get the idea, and the bike can be used all around the area with some nice riding and plenty of off bike amenities and activities.

Temps should be pretty good and its proximity to several major cities or even driving too from Utah is not too bad.

Best of wishes and hope you are able to make this happen.
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Old 04-11-2013, 11:18 AM   #4
kitesurfer
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BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY. bike rentals in knoxville tenn. a two day ride on the parkway from cherokee nc to va. the scenery is spectacular most of the way. knowville is like an hour from cherokee.
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Old 04-11-2013, 12:28 PM   #5
klaviator
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Mountains of North Georgia, West NC, VA, WVA and Eastern TN have great riding. Rent a bike in the Atlanta area or TN. Knoxville, TN as mentioned by the previous poster would likely be less stressful than Atlanta. The Blue Ridge Parkway is great but so is the area around it. The whole area caters to motorcyclists who make up a large part of their business. There is a reason why riders from all over the eastern US and Canada vacation in this area. The weather is usually nice in the spring. If it's hot, just go to the higher elevations like the BRP. If it gets cold, then stay away from the higher elevations.
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Old 04-11-2013, 01:59 PM   #6
Eyes Shut
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My suggestion: Death Valley (though it may be too warm in about 3 weeks --you might want to go sooner rather than later).

You can fly into Las Vegas, then rent a bike and ride to DV. You could stay in either Furnace Creek Ranch or Furnace Creek Inn (the Inn is fancier and a lot pricier than the Ranch, but the Ranch is pretty darn nice). Both have lovely outdoor pools. The food at both places is pretty decent, too. Lots of good beer choices at the Ranch eateries, if you are into that (but the Inn only has bottled beers ).

You can do day rides to Badwater and Scotty's Castle. There are a couple of good tours at Scotty's Castle, and it's an interesting place to see. You can also ride to Rhyolite, a ghost town with some interesting art pieces, and the Amargosa Opera House, in Amargosa NV.

Another day trip is to ride to Panamint Springs, and day hike to Darwin Falls. Enjoy a beer or iced tea on the Panamint Springs Resort patio.

You can also rent a 4-wheel drive jeep and do some of the unpaved roads around the park.

Whatever you decide to do, I hope it works out as a good trip for you and your mom. Best wishes for her and your family.
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Old 04-11-2013, 03:54 PM   #7
N-Id-Jim
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check out the south half of the Oregon coast

Best wishes to you.
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Old 04-11-2013, 04:15 PM   #8
holckster
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San Francisco.
Everyone deserves to cross the Golden Gate Bridge at least once.
Day rides are amazing in every direction.
Rent a bike for the super nice days and a car for the rest.
South to Monterey/Big Sur.
North thru Napa wine country and onto the Avenue of the Giants to Humboldt and Redwood Parks, overnight in Fortuna, a small Victorian town.
East to Yosemite, Lake Tahoe or any of the many Serria Nevada Passes.
BTW
If you want to stay in a Hotel that's in a National Park (like Yosemite) they are probably already booked up, but if you explain the terminal illness situation they may have a few rooms held back to accomodate you, just ask.
Good luck wherever you end up.
I'm 90 miles inland from SF, also in wine county so let me know if you get out this way.
www.visitlodi.com
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Old 04-11-2013, 04:21 PM   #9
TwoWheeldTerror
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klaviator View Post
Mountains of North Georgia, West NC, VA, WVA and Eastern TN have great riding. Rent a bike in the Atlanta area or TN. Knoxville, TN as mentioned by the previous poster would likely be less stressful than Atlanta. The Blue Ridge Parkway is great but so is the area around it. The whole area caters to motorcyclists who make up a large part of their business. There is a reason why riders from all over the eastern US and Canada vacation in this area. The weather is usually nice in the spring. If it's hot, just go to the higher elevations like the BRP. If it gets cold, then stay away from the higher elevations.
This...the GA/TN/NC/VA mountains cannot be beat.
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Old 04-11-2013, 05:08 PM   #10
Jamie Z
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Tossing out another idea: Big Bend National Park. Not sure where you could rent a bike in the area, but the weather should be good right now. I'd be a little wary of the Blue Ridge Parkway suggestions this time of year. With the elevation, could be mighty brisk.

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Old 04-11-2013, 05:45 PM   #11
corney
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Real sorry about your Mom's illness!

Enjoy your trip as it is a great thing to be doing for both of you.

Ride safe!
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Old 04-11-2013, 06:24 PM   #12
KGBz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie Z View Post
Tossing out another idea: Big Bend National Park.
I totally agree with this. You can rent a MC in El Paso and it is a 4 hour drive to Terlingua. I was there two summers ago (in searing 120 degree heat) yet this time of year should be pleasant. Marfa looks to be in the mid 80s next week...and it should be slightly warmer in Big Bend... truly one of the most gorgeous place in this country.

IMO, if I was dying, I would want to see three parks. Big Bend, Grand Canyon and Yosemite...if i had time... I would see Yellowstone. I have only been to Big Bend.

You can check out some pictures I took on my Facebook page here.

Make sure you show her a good time!
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Old 04-11-2013, 08:26 PM   #13
CaptUglyDan
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This

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eyes Shut View Post
My suggestion: Death Valley (though it may be too warm in about 3 weeks --you might want to go sooner rather than later).

You can fly into Las Vegas, then rent a bike and ride to DV. You could stay in either Furnace Creek Ranch or Furnace Creek Inn (the Inn is fancier and a lot pricier than the Ranch, but the Ranch is pretty darn nice). Both have lovely outdoor pools. The food at both places is pretty decent, too. Lots of good beer choices at the Ranch eateries, if you are into that (but the Inn only has bottled beers ).

You can do day rides to Badwater and Scotty's Castle. There are a couple of good tours at Scotty's Castle, and it's an interesting place to see. You can also ride to Rhyolite, a ghost town with some interesting art pieces, and the Amargosa Opera House, in Amargosa NV.

Another day trip is to ride to Panamint Springs, and day hike to Darwin Falls. Enjoy a beer or iced tea on the Panamint Springs Resort patio.

You can also rent a 4-wheel drive jeep and do some of the unpaved roads around the park.

Whatever you decide to do, I hope it works out as a good trip for you and your mom. Best wishes for her and your family.
1st off I'm sorry to hear of your Mom's diagnosis, but high altitudes should be off limits, DV is a wonderful place to seek solitude, Whether you ride, drive a car, or a hack, its all good, at this stage its really about the journey, not the ride you choose. The most important part is to make Mom as comfortable as possible.
You sound like a wonderful son, and I wish you both the best.
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:05 AM   #14
No False Enthusiasm
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I just returned from a three day ride to Big Bend. Spring flowers in the desert are something to see. Good suggestion regarding El Paso flight and rent a bike.

Another idea would be to fly to Austin or San Antonio and rent. Head to the Hill Country. I rode this route on my return...

Here's a route that includes some of the best roads in Texas: http://goo.gl/maps/XCqWt

If you have time, include all of the Three Sisters, 335, 336, and 337.

One advantage to this route is that the elevations are lower than in the mountains out West. Reduces the potential breathing problem of higher elevations.

Where ever you visit, I'd try to ride during the middle of the week. Less traffic and much more enjoyable.

Best regards to you and your mother.

NFE

PS: Here's a route from Austin... http://goo.gl/maps/TqzQx

I googled Austin Moto Rentals and got http://www.austinmotorentals.com/fleet-rates1/

Not affiliated, but looks like a wide selection...

No False Enthusiasm screwed with this post 04-12-2013 at 06:12 AM
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:27 AM   #15
SCQTT
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I'm sorry about your mom's illness.

I'm sorta friends with some motorcycle industry people who have retired to Big Bend. They are wonderful, caring people. I'm sure they would be glad to give you the lowdown on what to do, see & where to stay. Shoot me a PM & I'll get in touch with them if this is where you decide to go.

My other thought would be for a little later this spring. I think the Sierra Nevadas are some of the best riding there is. You could combine that with a little time around Tahoe, Yosemite and some of the Redwoods....really majestic stuff to see together.
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