Day 1 June 28/08:
4:45am sat morning, usually an un godly hour but we are talking roadtrip here so its all good! Grabbed my backpack, gps, wallet and passport and off i went. got to the border at 5:30am and was amazed at how many cars were already there. Of course me being me i ended up in the slow lane...a mini van sitting in the lane with all the doors open getting harrassed by the border guard...off i went to the other lane. Once through there i hit the I-5 for approx 1 hour and that was the last i saw of an interstate.
The air was cool and crisp and not a cloud anywhere. I wasnt going to bitch about the cold as i knew it was going to get smoking hot. Before i turned off to highway 2, i noticed a silouette in the middle of the interstate standing behind a car. Instinct told me to slow down and sure enough before 7am on a saturday morning a radar trap....he didnt even bat an eye at me.
First stop in monroe for a cup of coffee and an apple fritter so good you'd shit yer pants! At this point i could feel the warmth of the sun beating on my face. A drop or two of petrol and off i went. Stevens pass is just beautiful complimented with very little traffic being so early in the morning and zero police presence. stopped to snap a pic of a cool little place called "The Alps" tucked into the landscape. Gassed up in Leavenworth a bottle of water and bag of peanuts and checked out a couple of hotties messing with an inner tube strapped to the roof of there car.
Headed on towards wenatchee and turned north on hwy 97. Not a super exciting road but it was great just to be out. there was a nice contrast between hot and cool air between the rising air temp from the sun and cool breeze off the river....i felt this quite a bit throughout the trip. There seemed to be a more than normal amount of deer hit on the road. I saw at least 7 or 8 hit deer or evidence of it.
I carried on up north until i hit Tonasket and it was frickin hot by this time. Perfect opportunity for ice cream! This as it turned out was the major component of my diet for the weekend. I found a nice little patio ma and pa joint with umbrellas so i geared down took a seat and indulged in the creamy goodness...o hail the ice cream gods!
I headed east from Tonasket on highway 20 and experienced quite diverse terrain and some nice twisty sections without a lot of traffic. I got up into some higher altitudes where the trees got bushier and the air cooler. I came upon a cool little town called Republic. Kind of reminds me of winthrop but with more brick buildings. Not a lot going on in this town and i often wondered throughout my journey, what sustains these little towns.
I carried on through kettle falls and onto Colville which was supposed to be my stop over for the night, but when i arrived in Colville it was only mid afternoon....i thought to myself...i cant stop now! So i took my map and gps into "Ronnie D's" drive-in and pondered this over a massive burger and curly fries. Looking at the map i see that Idaho isnt far off...hmmm....why not! Idaho it is. I used the gps to scout out the hotel situation in a town called Sandpoint....showed 6 or 7 to choose from, so Sandpoint here i come! I had to stop for the ceramonial pic of my bike by the welcome to Idaho sign. I stopped in sandpoint at the quality inn at 5:30pm. Once in my room it was off with the clothes (pretty thought i know) cranked the a/c...chilled out watching movies and eating munchies.
6am im out the door and heading south on hwy 95 towards spokane. Lots of farm country out this way with green rolling hills, fresh crisp morning air and lots of old farm houses along the way. I stopped to take a pic of a wooden roller coaster (not sure why...thought it was cool at the time) I dug my camera out of my backpack, snaped a pic or 2, wrapped the camera around my neck and off I go. At this point i crack er wide open and run through the first 3 gears when i see flashes of items in my mirror and i realized those items were flying out of my backpack because im a dumbass and didnt do up the zipper. fortunately there wasnt any traffic so i could go back and pick up my dirty shorts from the day before and other items off the road.
From there it was pretty uneventful riding through spokane and some other small farming communities such as Reardon and Wilbur along hwy 2. Very picturesque landscape. Ordinarily i would find the straight hwy's boring, but i was caught in the moment and i was just enjoying being somewhere ive never been before.
From wilbur i headed north west on hwy 174 to the grand coulee dam, which is in my opinion an engineering marvel. Hwy 155 from grand coulee to Omak turned out to be a bit of a gem with a variety of twisty bits. From there it was hwy 20 towards twisp and good ole winthrop. On my way to twisp i found out first hand at how ridiculously slow gold wings are. I got caught behind two good ole boys on their respective wings for a good ten miles and missed out on some good stuff. Looking at the lean angle on those wings im sure that any more than 10 degrees lean and he would have knocked his bags and pipes off. Now this is where i realized that all things happen for a reason. Following these guys through a 25mph corner( and we were doing precisely 25mph) there was a slick of some kind, where when i hit it the front wheel skidded out a bit and skeered the beejesus outta me. So then i thought...wow if i wasnt stuck behine these two characters i would have ran through that corner at least twice that speed and would have likely low sided...things that make you go hmmmm.
From there i made the standard stop in winthrop for gas and headed into the cascades where i was looking forward to cooling off a bit in the mountains. I didnt get the full enjoyment of riding through the pass as there was an abnormal amount of traffic....pretty disappointing i have to say. I stopped in marblemount for gas and as usual there was a pack of bikes there. Now i dont like to stereotype, but these guys were all on harleys and here i come...this asshole on a crotch rocket. I had few pleasant conversations with some guys on harleys throughout by trip, but i tried to strike up a bit of conversation with these guys...pffft! They just stuck their noses in the air gave me a couple of one word answers nd that was that....i played with my gps ate my ice cream ( did i mention i ate alot of ice cream?)
From there it was some boring ass ride to sedro wooley because of all the frickin traffic. By this time i was tired hot and wanting to get home, so it was pure hooliganism all the way to the sumas border...i think i only got fingered once that i could see...i had plenty of room i swear!!
all in all a fantastic trip....lots of new sights...just wish a had more than two days as there are quite a few roads that i missed....oh well i will get back and get em one of these days. CLICK LINK FOR PICS