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Old 09-11-2014, 09:24 AM   #1
Schmitty OP
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WA to OK and back: Chasing a girl



This is insane. That was the first thought that crossed my mind when the idea of this trip popped up in my pea brain. Riding a motorcycle to Oklahoma and back just to see a girl I had started dating a few months ago was just plain crazy. But she wasn't just a girl, she was a woman, and we were both 29 and well traveled, semi-seasoned adults, and we fit together incredibly well. It was almost unfair, it was supposed to be a summer fling. But I wanted to go, and she wanted me to go, and that was that.


Dawww

Well, I'm about to turn 30 and I've never done anything this crazy before so I might as well get it out of the way. Let's ride halfway across the country for a girl.

On a DR650...


Vancouver Island earlier this year

Told you it was crazy.

After the decision was made I had about 12 days to get ready. The bike needed some work but that wouldn't be a problem with that much time.

Then my supervisor calls me at 7 in the morning. "Hey, Lisa can't do the fire tower, can you go down to Grangeville?"

Shit. "Yes."

So now I had 3 days to get the bike ready as I would be going to Grangeville, ID for a week to work the temporary control tower set up there. These towers go up every summer to help out at airports where the US Forestry Service is operating their air attack operations. The operations cause an influx of air traffic so we come in and sort things out in the mean time.

The night before I left I packed up my things and then went out to the garage and did a late night valve check. I hoped I wouldn't regret that later.



My office







All I need is a radio and a pair of binoculars. Sometimes luck helps too.

Unfortunately the rain did most of our work for us so I ended up not having much to do in Grangeville. I drove back up to Spokane after my duty period ended and got right back to work on the bike. I also gave the girl one more call just to make sure she was 100% sure she wanted me to come down. I'd hate to get there and for things to be awkward. All the worries for naught as she absolutely wanted me there and her only concern was my safety.

Bah, safety! I told her there was nothing to fear and tried not to think about cold mountain passes or 100 degree deserts or every other driver in America or the fact that I did my own valve check.

It is supposed to tap like that right?
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Old 09-11-2014, 09:31 AM   #2
Dirt2007
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I'm in.
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Old 09-11-2014, 10:41 AM   #3
Schmitty OP
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Day 1



The day arrived, and, as usual, I was rushing around packing shit up because I told myself the night before on my third beer that there wasn't that much left to pack anyway, just do it in the morning. It didn't help either that I decided to repack and reorganize everything at the last minute. All the while cursing my shitty saddlebags and wishing I had sprung for racks and soft panniers.

But eventually all the crap I didn't forget did fit and was on the bike and my two weeks off was about to begin.

About those two weeks. Originally this was 2 weeks for riding a motorcycle across Japan. Until I decided that wasn't going to be as fun as it sounded. Then it was riding trains across Japan (still good, trains are cool). Until I decided to buy a house. Then it was two weeks of working on my new house. Until I met a girl...you get the rest I'm sure.


I even left myself a spot!

Okay! Bike loaded! Send a picture to the girl, say something badass. Post a picture on Facebook, say something badass. Get on the bike and ride off, feeling like a badass. Get about a mile down the road and realize the GPS maps didn't load right from the computer.

Turn around and go home. Hope nobody sees you. Put the damn maps on the stupid GPS. Ride off like a slightly deflated badass.

I ride toward the south end of Lake Couer D'Alene and enjoy the veiw of the mountains there, before jumping on Hwy 95 to start my journey south. My plan is to track south and then east so I can see some new places rather than just going in a straight line to OK.

Although not a new place to me, I haven't been to Lewiston on the moto yet, thus I haven't ridden the Old Spiral Highway. I mosey down, taking my time on the laden DR, since its the first day I'm still feeling things out. But the highway is a fun distraction from the slog of crossing Idaho, and lifts me out of the day one depression for a bit.



Click on it for a bigger version.

Day one depression? Whats that? That's what I call the uncertain feelings I always get on the first day of a moto road trip. That first day you can still remember the comfort of your bed, the warmth of your home. You knew what your ass felt like before it was a puddle of pain and numbness. By day two these are generally forgotten and its replaced with an eagerness to just get on the bike and ride the shit out of.

My first fuel stop is a rather familiar place. I'm right back in Grangeville, which I had left about 2 days ago. I stop at the gas station near the airport and grab a bite since I happen to know the food here is decent.



Full of patty melt and tator tots I get back on the road. My mood is cloudy again, maybe its the end of the trip I'm more concerned with. I told myself I had to be prepared to say goodbye forever when I left OK. I figured all this really was was an extension of summer, a last stand against the inevitable. I continued down this line of thought as I crested the hills south of Grangeville and came upon this sight:



I pulled over and just stared, my moody thoughts gone to the wind. Back on the road I descended and descended until a sign finally gave away my locale: Hell's Canyon Recreation Area. I had no idea the route I planed came through here. Cue miles and miles of gorgeous riding, and no stops for pictures so have some stills off the GoPro.


Momma always said I was bound for Hell...



Out of Hell's Canyon I headed for McCall just to change things up I suppose. The temps dropped again out of the canyon and I started what would become a several day game of Avoid the Rain. I stopped in McCall just long enough to enjoy the view and let some blood back into my butt.



As I made my way south toward Boise I started worrying about time. My late start on the day put me further behind then I expected. My plan was to camp at a state park south of Mountain Home but I'm not sure if I'll beat the sun. I've got a tinted visor on but for this trip I brought clear lens goggles in case I get caught out at night.

By the time I reach Boise I really am racing the sun and I jump on the interstate to Mountain Home. I'm immediately unhappy. Open desert/plains, and a speed limit higher than what I want the bike at. I cruise at 70mph while everyone else passes me like I'm that crazy guy who rides his electric scooter to Walmart.

By the time I reach the access road to the state park, the sun is down and I'm at the back edge of a rain storm that is between me and the park. Imagining what sort of muddy mess the campground is, I turn back and head toward the KOA in Mountain Home.

I do not recommend the KOA in Mountain Home by any margin. Do not stay there. Unless trailer parks are your thing. And idiots revving their diesel pickups all night. Then by all means, this is your place.

On the way I get caught in rain and quickly realize that, though the goggles work well at night, riding in the rain is a bit prohibitive thanks to the rather sharp stinging sensation. A bit like someone shoving needles in your face.

470 miles down, 1530 to go.
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Old 09-11-2014, 11:15 AM   #4
-Chris-
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I'm in.

Looks like you will be close, you should come on in to Tulsa on a Tuesday for a beer!

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=465380
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Old 09-11-2014, 12:01 PM   #5
Schmitty OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by -Chris- View Post
I'm in.

Looks like you will be close, you should come on in to Tulsa on a Tuesday for a beer!

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=465380
Thanks for the offer, but unfortunately this journey is already finished. I really don't have the means yet of editing and uploading this stuff from the road so it just waits till I'm home.

More to come later tonight.
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Old 09-11-2014, 12:19 PM   #6
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:08 PM   #7
Idahoglock
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I'm in. You rode through my neck of the woods. The ride down Hwy 55 from McCall to Boise is beautiful.
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:35 PM   #8
Schmitty OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Idahoglock View Post
I'm in. You rode through my neck of the woods. The ride down Hwy 55 from McCall to Boise is beautiful.
Indeed it is.



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Old 09-11-2014, 01:39 PM   #9
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This is actually the best reason I know of for a crazy ride! I'm looking forward to the rest of your report.

[QUOTE]This is insane. That was the first thought that crossed my mind when the idea of this trip popped up in my pea brain. Riding a motorcycle to Oklahoma and back just to see a girl I had started dating a few months ago was just plain crazy.
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:42 PM   #10
ncj01
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In.

Only with the comment: I might would've taken a much bigger bike and knocked out a Butt-Burner 1500 on the way there - given what was at the destination and your 2wk time allowance..
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Old 09-11-2014, 02:02 PM   #11
moralem
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Not often we get a love story on this site...... looking forward to how it ends or begins. .
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Old 09-11-2014, 02:22 PM   #12
damasovi
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just to see a girld?

really? that is all you need! I did something like it for a picture, for a woman, I have no idea what I would do...

keep it coming amigo!!!

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Old 09-11-2014, 02:25 PM   #13
Schmitty OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncj01 View Post
In.

Only with the comment: I might would've taken a much bigger bike and knocked out a Butt-Burner 1500 on the way there - given what was at the destination and your 2wk time allowance..
Had I a larger bike I would have but for now its just the DR. Next year I'm hoping that a mid weight adventure bike will be entering my life.
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Old 09-11-2014, 03:24 PM   #14
James Cook
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[QUOTE=Schmitty;25051606]

This is insane. That was the first thought that crossed my mind when the idea of this trip popped up in my pea brain. Riding a motorcycle to Oklahoma and back just to see a girl I had started dating a few months ago was just plain crazy.





Crazy, mate you would ride a scooter if you had to.

Nice photo's.
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Old 09-11-2014, 03:39 PM   #15
cccolin
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i'm doing the opposite and riding away from a woman. looks like a good trip, man.
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