Planning a Trip to California
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Thread: Planning a Trip to California

  1. #1
    Posing with conviction Array heisenberg9's Avatar
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    Planning a Trip to California

    Suddenly I have this opportunity to go on a trip to Northern California this week. I have 5 days to do the trip with an additional 2 days to see my dad who lives about an hour past Sacramento in the Sierra Foothills, goldrush country.

    I haven't done the coast before and I know there are a lot of veteran riders here who can give me some great suggestions on side trips. I know its not a lot of time to do it but its better than nothing.

    Given there are tons of side trips on the way down what would people suggest. I need to figure this out quickly as I could be leaving this afternoon but more realistically early Tuesday (Sept 5th).

    One more thing. My tires have about 1000 to 1500 kilos left on them. If you know of a good place to get inexpensive tires installed let me know!

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  3. #2
    Registered User Array michael's Avatar
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    Pick up the Fall issue of Motorcycle Escape magazine.
    Good stuff on the California coast, and while there's not a lot of details, there's a brief overview of a lot of the premiere riding areas in California.
    Personally, I'd ride quick like to Grant's Pass, Oregon, then turn right. If you put your thumb on I5 in northern California, anything to the left of your thumb is good riding.
    Wear good rubber before you go (unless you want to make an appointment at Beaverton Honda for some new shoes.....no taxes in Oregon) and have a good time.

  4. #3
    slower than ... Array FLAX's Avatar
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    Number one must do
    Buy a subscription to pashnit.com
    It is California's online version of Destination Highways and way easier to use.
    Greg and I spent a whole month last September in Northern California riding every day. I will post a short list of our favorite roads when I have a bit of time.

  5. #4
    Posing with conviction Array heisenberg9's Avatar
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    Yep this trip looks like a go. I will log on my way down to see if anyone has posted up some gem rides. Thanks for the input thus far.

    I have a copy of Washington Destination Highways and maps of course.

  6. #5
    Posing with conviction Array heisenberg9's Avatar
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    Here is a basic map of the Oregon coast for reference.

  7. #6
    Posing with conviction Array heisenberg9's Avatar
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    Here is a map of the coast of Northern California for reference:
    Last edited by heisenberg; 09-04-2006 at 11:06 AM. Reason: made better map

  8. #7
    Ride Solo Array GSP's Avatar
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    If you're going to be in the Sierra foothills, ride some passes: Ebbets, Sonora, Tioga, Monitor. Now that the peak holiday season has passed, they'll be empty of traffic (and they weren't bad in July). Oh yeah, if you ride Tioga Pass, eat at the cafe in the Mobil gas station in Lee Vining. .

    See my MotoGP trip report for some California ideas:
    http://www.bcsportbikes.com/forum/sh...ght=GSP+MotoGP

    Mighty Kentor was also down there:
    http://www.bcsportbikes.com/forum/sh...ght=Power+Trip
    "When in doubt accelerate.
    It may not help you avoid the problem,
    but it'll end the suspense."


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  9. #8
    Still defying gravity... Array Thumper 8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by heisenberg9 View Post
    One more thing. My tires have about 1000 to 1500 kilos left on them. If you know of a good place to get inexpensive tires installed let me know!
    Andrew,

    I'll let others recommend roads - but for tires, I would get them in Oregon (no sales tax). I picked up a Diablo Corsa for a good price at Cycle Gear in Portland ( recommended by the locals - http://www.cyclegear.com/stores/portland.cfm ). They carry a good variety of brands. Call ahead 'cause you will need installation - they are sometimes short staffed or very busy.

    Shop around if you have time, but these guys were very fair.

    Also, remember Oregon is a 'right to work' state, so you don't start pumping your own gas - give the gas pump dude your credit card, and he will swipe it and pass you the pump.

    Looks like the weather will be great - and if you can fit a scoot around Mt St Helens on your return trip, it is well worth it.
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  10. #9
    slower than ... Array FLAX's Avatar
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    A second the vote for Hwy 4 - Ebbets Pass, just make sure you take a heated vest. Last mid-September at noon it was 34F. I have no idea how cold it was the night before, except that I stopped at a hotel in Markleyville even though it didn't have any food, except the pretzels in the bar (and I love to eat). All the passes in the Sierras are great, but lots of Hwy 4 is single lane, definitely a deterent to the camper set. The roads running between the pass routes are fun and unused, although fairly shaded by the trees.
    Also a second vote for the food at the Mobile station in Lee Vining.

    Coast Roads. Once you are south of Fort Bragg where 101 and 1 part ways, try all the roads that run between the two. Amazingly technical, well paved and no driveways, cars or radar. My favorites, The Stewarts Point - Skaggs Spring Road, Kings Ridge Road - Tin Barn Road, from Monte Rio to Stewarts Point (don't go from Guernville, that is a private no-through road, not apparent on maps or GPS). Think well paved goat track. Mountain View Road is slightly higher speed, but has a buried cable groove running its entire length (someone should be shot here). This connects with the Ukiah Booneville Road, very good, but a few more cars. Booneville to Cloverdale is more rural (as opposed to wilderness) but very well engineered and just repaved. Highway One is fun for higher speed loopy, but there is more traffic to pass and radar possibility. Highway 101 is great for really high spped sweepers, but there will be radar for sure before and after any towns (think Hope). The Geysers Road from Healdsburg to Cloverdale is very technical (1st and 2nd gear only) and slightly goat track pavement, but unbeatable for turns per minute, some parts are one every two seconds, my most favorite. Any of the roads around and south of Clear Lake are better than good, although the famous Hopland Road (no trucks) seemed to have plenty of truck-like vehicles and few passing opportunites, I prefer Big Canyon Road from Middletown to Lower Lake.

    Almost without exception, the roads in California offer good visibilty (few trees), no cars (everyone is on the freeways), no radar (no traffic) and good pavement, often very old, but unused. They do have other surprises though, cows (more often than you think)(they don't move either, you just have to squeeze through), cow pies (obviously), washouts (from the odd time it has rained), sand (rain), and the occasional unmarked 20km corner (oh shit).

    Enjoy. And report back.

  11. #10
    Moderator Array Mighty Kentor's Avatar
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    Here's something we started a bit ago. Wish I could join you!!!

    http://www.bcsportbikes.com/forum/sh...1&postcount=19
    Reformatted to fit your screen.

  12. #11
    Posing with conviction Array heisenberg9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mighty Kentor View Post
    Here's something we started a bit ago. Wish I could join you!!!

    http://www.bcsportbikes.com/forum/sh...1&postcount=19
    Thanks I was looking for that post.

  13. #12
    Registered User Array slowzuki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by michael View Post
    Pick up the Fall issue of Motorcycle Escape magazine.
    Good stuff on the California coast, and while there's not a lot of details, there's a brief overview of a lot of the premiere riding areas in California.
    Personally, I'd ride quick like to Grant's Pass, Oregon, then turn right. If you put your thumb on I5 in northern California, anything to the left of your thumb is good riding.
    Wear good rubber before you go (unless you want to make an appointment at Beaverton Honda for some new shoes.....no taxes in Oregon) and have a good time.

    i have that issue it is really good....
    “……If a chick sits on your face and you can't hear the stereo anymore...she's too fat! --The Machinist.

  14. #13
    slower than ... Array FLAX's Avatar
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    Geysers Road

  15. #14
    Posing with conviction Array heisenberg9's Avatar
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    Thanks guys for all the ideas and encouragement. Setting sail tomorrow at 5:00 am. Time to wash and rube the bike. Oh how I luv rube.

  16. #15
    Posing with conviction Array heisenberg9's Avatar
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    One question about Mt Saint Helens... Which approach is best. A quick look through DH. I see DH2 and DH3 upto Mt St. Helens. If I had to pick one which one should I do? If you don't have DH maybe just name up a town or two that the "good route" passes through and I can figure it out.

    Thanks again guys.

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