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Old 04-05-2013, 08:43 AM   #1
Slickhorn OP
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A little ride down the PCH, four corners and home

So, I'm taking a Uhaul from Utah to Orcas Island to bring the rest of my grandmother's belongings to her. I'm dragging the Tiger up for a 2-3 week journey home. I plan to ride the PCH from Olympia to San Diego, cruise across the desert to Silver City, NM then back up through four corners and back to Park City. I'm pretty familiar with everything from Four Corners to home, and have gotten great beta on the Oregon section for what not to miss. So...any info on California - I know lost coast highway is not to be missed, and to avoid the PCH in Long Beach - Arizona and NM would be appreciated. My base map looks something like this, it's just a guideline, I am always open to exploring off the beaten path. Thanks in advance!

PCH - AZ - NM - HOME

Fixed the map link


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Old 04-05-2013, 02:44 PM   #2
High Country Herb
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Do you like raw oysters? The best I've ever had are at Drake's Bay Oyster Company located just north of San Francisco in the Point Reyes National Seashore.

Just inland from there in the town of Petaluma, is my favorite micro brewery, Lagunitas. Their Fusion series of beers are second to none. They have live music most nights, and a $55/night clean motel just a few doors away. The last time I was there, I caught a really good gospel bluegrass band.

If neither of those is your thing, there is also a good Youth Hostel in the Marin Headlands. It is housed in a secluded old military barracks. There are actually a few Hostels along the central coast, some of them in lighthouses.

The best part of the PCH is south of Monterey near Big Sur. Camping gets booked up near there, but there are some B&Bs. If you are looking to keep costs down, it might be best to press on to Pismo Beach. By the way, you can rent all sort of sand vehicles at the Pismo Dunes (now called Oceano Dunes).

Your map has a break in it at Lompoc. Just east of there is a little Danish village called Solvang. There is a cool motorcycle museum in Solvang, where the little signs next to each vintage bike have more interesting comments than the usual name, date, cc. Definitely worth checking out.
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Old 04-07-2013, 09:30 AM   #3
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As long as you're asking

I'd skip the WA coast. Riding ain't all that, views ain't all that. If it were me, I'd get to Astoria and go coastal from there.

Avenue of the Giants in NorCal is a MUST on two wheels https://maps.google.com/maps?saddr=S...4,5,6&t=m&z=14 Parallels the 101 for 30 gloroius miles.

As for SoCal, skirting Long Beach isn't a bad idea. However you needn't use the 405. If you're asking me, the 405 is a suicide run on a good day. Stay on the PCH/East PCH, it'll run right around Long Beach and dump you into Seal Beach. You're back on the water, you'll roll through the heart of the surf towns, Huntington, Newport, Laguna Beaches (land of the beautiful people and exotic cars). After Dana Point (nice spot, good food), stay on The Coast Highway, it'll end in San Clemente at the 5.
If you're insist on using the 405, I'd suggest getting to it from Malibu by way of the 101, using any of the Malibu Canyon roads to get to the 101; S Topanga Canyon, Malibu Canyon, Mullholland, Latigo Canyon, Decker Road - all fabulous, twisty roads. Cops and stupid tourists on the sunny weekends, but mid-week, the BEST (all the SoCal based car and bike mags use these roads for their testing/photoshoots).

Dunno your when you're going, but I would suggest you bring as much patience as you can fit in your helmet. By that I mean, the 1 South from Monterey is so good, it'll turn into a frustratingly slow RV slog on nice days. Ten times worse in Summer, another ten times worse on weekends. Can't miss riding/sights/eats/drinks, but chock full of idiots at times. The 101/1 from Fort Bragg to Marin is the preferred racetrack for seemingly every sportbike rider in SF. If you can avoid these spectacular spots on weekends, you'll be much happier. Northern California, Oregon and Washington are far less crowded, even on weekends.

Just my thoughts from years of riding/driving/living along your planned route.





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Old 04-07-2013, 06:20 PM   #4
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I just came back from riding Vancouver to LA and back, definately the riding is better mid week, lots of cops in WA and OR, Cal seemed better for cops and radar IMHO.

All of the riding off the I5 is enjoyable to some degree, if you fancy adding some miles try going from the coast Arcata to Yreka then back to the coast. totally pointless but theres several hundred miles of twisties Infact there are tons of coast to I5 routes that are super cool, then you can jump back onto the coast where ever. Good luck
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Old 04-07-2013, 08:34 PM   #5
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I have to be in CA in mid May and plan on riding the PCH from Sacramento to San Diego when done with business. Wife wants a day in the Napa Valley. Never been to CA, question is the weather. She doesn't ride a lot and wants to make sure it is going to be warm enough. It looks like it will be, but any suggestions as to temps that time of year. Thanks
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Old 04-07-2013, 08:55 PM   #6
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May will be great getting around weather, a bit chilly mornings and evenings, perfect daytime temps. Rainy season should be over by then.

The further from the water, the less likely you'll experience fog and cold. Napa should be just about right, but most of the coast will experience morning and evening fog. Fog in Monterey goes away around noon, or doesn't go away at all.


My experience anyway.




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Old 04-08-2013, 07:20 AM   #7
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Thanks for the info! Will try and tweak my dates to avoid the weekend if I can. Planning on weather of any sort at this point, this trip kinda fell into my lap so the dates weren't ideal but adventure awaits either way...
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:49 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slickhorn View Post
So, I'm taking a Uhaul from Utah to Orcas Island to bring the rest of my grandmother's belongings to her. I'm dragging the Tiger up for a 2-3 week journey home. I plan to ride the PCH from Olympia to San Diego, cruise across the desert to Silver City, NM then back up through four corners and back to Park City. I'm pretty familiar with everything from Four Corners to home, and have gotten great beta on the Oregon section for what not to miss. So...any info on California - I know lost coast highway is not to be missed, and to avoid the PCH in Long Beach - Arizona and NM would be appreciated. My base map looks something like this, it's just a guideline, I am always open to exploring off the beaten path. Thanks in advance!

PCH - AZ - NM - HOME

Fixed the map link



Hey Slickhorn, how much of that route through AZ and NM is dirt?
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:02 PM   #9
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I would use less I 8. West of El Centro, I would head north west on SR 2 toward Julian; that's somewhat known as Sweeney Pass Rd and with other names such as Butterfield Stage Rd. Stop at the springs (San Diego co park, Agua Caliente hot springs)
Then from Julian west on 78 to the 15, then north to Lake Elsinore. Then west on Ortega Hwy out to the 5 in San Juan Capistrano.
You do get off the 10 in Santa Monica and take 1; but stay on it past Malibu and up to Oxnard, then north and a bit east to 150 north thru' Ojai and out to the north on 33 then west any way to the 101.
I recommend a stop in Moro Bay.
In Oxnard they have nice boat rides out to the islands, day trips, some of which are really nice if you like boat rides.
dc
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Old 04-10-2013, 07:29 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by His Pistolship View Post
Hey Slickhorn, how much of that route through AZ and NM is dirt?

Well I was looking at the Camino Del Diablo but it appears to be closed in spring for animal migrations or something. Been looking at maps and have a few ideas in mind, but open to suggestion. The road home in Utah will likely go thru the bears ears, over the Abajos, thru the Bridger Jack area, Buckhorn wash in the Swell then Nine Mile pass back to Park City, A route I am very familiar with but never tire of.

David13 - Never really planned on I 8 at all, I am a little familiar with SoCal from my days at Pendleton, but Google maps stopped playing nice in a few spots so I gave up. Thanks for the suggestions!
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Old 04-10-2013, 01:24 PM   #11
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On my trip last year I was awed by the road southbound to Clifton, AZ. That's US 191. Page 3 of my thread will give you more info http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=359662
It was so great that I'm returning this year to do it northbound. From your proposed track, I would cut off and take US 191 right off of I 10.

I'm headed to the BMW rally in Salem, OR in mid July. Any tips on the route north from Four Corners?
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Old 04-11-2013, 07:44 AM   #12
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I'm headed to the BMW rally in Salem, OR in mid July. Any tips on the route north from Four Corners?

Well the obvious route would be 191 all the way to Moab but there are far more scenic and fun routes. How dirty are you willing to get? If you're just looking for scenic fun slab, head towards Mexican Hat and ride 261 north up the Moqui Dugway and onto Cedar Mesa, for a fun side trip do the easy dirt road through the valley of the gods, when you hit 95, turn left and take the amazing ride along Fry Canyon through Hite to Hanksville or do 276 to Lee's ferry, take the boat across Lake Foul and continue north from there. Tons of dirt options either way. From Hanksville go west on 24 towards Capital Reef and Torrey. I could go on and on and on, depends how much time you want to spend in my home state. Hope that helps.

J
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