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BigJohnSD and Festar Ride Again

Thursday June 6, 2024 - Eureka, CA to Ukiah, CA via the "Lost Coast".

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We left Eureka late for us at 1000. A brief spurt down US-101 put us into the old Redwood Lumber Victorian village of Fortuna, CA.

Of course it wouldn't be the " Flat White" tour without stopping for a coffee, so we did!

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It wasn't the best coffee if the trip and they charged extra to make it right by adding more espresso. Sad situation.

But we had entertainment while we sipped

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Initially he was afraid of us in our gear but soon succumbed to ear scratches and we were best buddies by stops end.

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Fortuna really is a Victorian jem!

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Main Street

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Fortunately is also the Northern terminus of the famed "Matolle Road" the entrance to the "Lost Coast". Matolle Road is a goat path for most of the Northern section.

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But soon opens to some beautiful vistas

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Continued - too many pix
 
June 6th - Continued

It was in the low 50s on the coast, but just a few miles inland at Honeydew it was 92f when we stopped for a cold drink.

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From Honeydew we made our way back towards US-101 through Ettersburg a few small redwood groves.

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And then turned onto the famous CA-1 "Highway One" at Leggett.

Between 101 and the coast is a beautiful stretch of road that requires all ones attention, thus no pictures.

Between reaching the Coast and Fort Bragg there were multiple one lane construction sites, 5 in all, if I remember correctly. We got lucky at a few and sailed through but stopped at most.

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Tough view while we waited!

In Fort Bragg we needed coffee.
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CA-20 runs from Fort Bragg to Willits on 101. It is 37 miles of twisty paradise if you're not stuck behind slow traffic. These two kept up a good pace for 25 miles before finally letting us pass by pulling into a turnout. There are no "passing zones" slow traffic is supposed to pull over after 5 vehicles are following.

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A short jaunt down 101 from Willits to Ukiah brought us to our home for the evening and a rendezvous with another riding group "Dangerous Curves".

We all walked across the street to a very warm inside Applebee's for supper.

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Alas, at 72 I think I'm the " Senior Member" :(

Stay tuned, tomorrow we head back North to Shelter Cove for a night at/on the beach.
 
June 7th - Ukiah to Shelter Cove, CA - ~ 250 miles - all day.
Brian, John Wilson, Jim Fontana and I left Ukiah at 0800. We rode a pre planned route to Shelter Cove hopping back and forth over the coastal ranges of California. It was cool along the ocean, hot as he'll as soon as we crested the first inland ridge as we moved back and forth.

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Quite the Vista

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Narrow two lane tracks, lots of tight curves and elevation change.


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A cool respite amongst the Redwoods

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Coffee stop in Mendocino

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Flat White (well made) and an Almond Croissant.

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L to R Jim Fontana, Yours Truly, John Wilson, Brian Maddy.

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Ocean cool
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More Redwoods Cool

Camp at Shelter Cove

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Pterodactyl and the "Spousal Unit" (Kevin & Annie) are traveling in high style!

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Kevin & Annie Enjoying the view and a little refreshment at the brewery behind the campground.

Brian and John hamming it up

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Food Porn - Fresh Local Rock Fish (outstanding), Coleslaw (good), and Beer Macaroni & Cheese (meh).

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Ask Festar to explain!

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June 8th. - Shelter Cove to Shasta, CA ~300 miles all day

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Early visitors

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Heavy dew delayed our departure until after 0900, no o e wants to pack wet gear up.

Our breakfast views were spectacular!

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Of course -Flat Whites!
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We supported the local Willow Creek 8th grade graduating class raising $ for their graduation trip to San Francisco.
$10 for a wash, hot dog, chips, and a drink.

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Another "goat trail" The Salmon River Road!

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The Salmon River near Forks of Salmon

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Stopped for Ice Cream at Callahan CA
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And then back to Shasta for the evening

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11 May - 8 June

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~9,000 miles and counting.

New tires for me tomorrow, 17,000 plus on this set of Dunlop Trailmax Mission tires!

Stay Tuned!
 
June 9, 2024 - MT Shasta, CA to Yuba City, CA. 175 miles
We hit the road early, 0700, to beat the Valley Heat.
Flat Whites at Starbucks in MT Shasta and at Gridley, CA. Arrived at JREW's at 1130.

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JREW leading us down I-5
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Lake Shasta, almost empty the last time I rode through, was full!

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The Central Valley of California is truly the food basket of the United States, rice, fruit, small grain, nuts, tomatoes, etc are all grown here, plant it and water it, watch it grow.

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When not irrigated one can imagine what the valley looked like before the 1849 Gold Rush and subsequent immigration.

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Oleander bushes divide a lot of California highways - they stop cars as well if not better than guard rails or cables. They are in full blossom.

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As we approached Biggs and East Biggs the "Smallest Mountain Range in the World" the "Sutter Buttes" comes in to view.

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We had two major missions today - new tires on BigJohnSD's steed and an exploration of electrical gremlins in Festar's pony.

The tire change was easy thanks to JREW's (John Wilson) new Rabaconda Tire Machine. This thing was fantastic!

Easy off - Easy on!

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Bead broken

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One handed, no sweat removal

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One handed installation too. As with so many things in life you never can use too much lube.



These tires have 17,576 miles on them, probably could go another 1,000 miles but I chose not to chance it. YMMV!

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About 2/32" tread remaining

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3-4/32" remaining but starting to wear funny.

New tires - always feel so good!

The electrical gremlins search on Brian's bike did not go so well. After initial elation after finding and replacing a fuse that was only making intermittent internal contact, On the ride to our motel the troubles returned. Symptoms are the Electronic Dash intermittently flickers and dies, ABS failure lights come kn, dash goes black, brake lights are constantly flickering on without pedal or lever activation, but the bike starts and runs fine. Google reveals this may be a common problem in BMW F700 GS motorcycles, and could possibly be related to the Ring Antenna which detects the key chip failing. Others warn that these symptoms are a precursor to total failure of the instrument cluster and bike failure to run. We are considering options.

Tomorrow - we will break in John's new tires with a run up the Feather River Canyon, Bucks Lake Rd, Quincy-Laporte Rd and end up in Nevada City with good friends Doug & Gayle whom Brian and I first met ten years and over 100,000 miles ago.
Forums of all kinds are wonderful things!

Stay tuned!
 
June 10, 2024 - Yuba City CA to Grass Valley CA and a change of Motorcycles.

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We started our morning at Bridge Coffee for another round of "Flat White"

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As previously reported the BMW F700 was having increasingly intermittent serious electrical/electronic faults. One of the FJRRiders Forum members offered his 2013 FJR to Brian to finish our trip. Brian greatfully accepted the offer. We spent most of our day performing maintenance on the "new" bike and after a test ride to lunch and back spent several more hours diagnosing and repairing an intermittent headlight fault. The left headlight would flicker on and off. We thought it was a wire but it turned out to be a loose LED Headlight bulb base. Once we had a new bulb 💡 the issue disappeared. We also fit a new phone mount, changed the oil, and installed a different wind screen. All this took most of the afternoon snd necessitated at least three trips for parts and pieces. We left Yuba City at 5:00 pm at the height of rush hour in 98 degree heat.

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Lunch was Street Tacos along the Sacramento River near Colusa CA on our test ride.

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On our way back to JREW's we once again passed by the Sutter Buttes, the world's smallest mountain range.

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All finished and ready to go. Brian thanking John for his generosity.

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After a hot 37 mile ride old friends and a great diner awaited us.


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Tomorrow a day of the bikes and off our feet.

Lunch along the shores of Lake Tahoe with our hosts Doug and Gayle is the plan.

Stay tuned!
 
June 12, 2024 Grass Valley CA to Alturas, CA the long way 338 wonderful miles! Thanks for the route suggestions Doug Plumley!

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CA-49 IYKYK!

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Gold Lake Road :)

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Sierra Buttes - not the smallest mountain range in the world!

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The 1100 am Flat White in Quincy CA, coffee was great, tri-tip sandwich we split sucked. Bread was really dry.

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Lake Almanor - off US-89

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Vista from the West side of Eagle Lake mmmmmm!

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very little traffic today

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Brian in the zone! Eagle Lake Road

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Heading North towards Juniper Junction

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MT Shasta from the East this time

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Lots of Lava in this neck of the woods.

Alturas, CA tonight, Baker City OR tomorrow, Helps Canyon early on Friday then on Saturday we will head to Stanley ID, Challis, IDand points East.

Stay tuned!
 
13 June 2024 - Alturas CA to Baker City OR - 476 miles with a detour due to a "Garmin unrecognized gravel road" Modoc County CR-9 :(

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Once again the Valentine V1G2 saved us from disaster at least twice. Once in CA on 395 and once in OR on 395. It surely owes me nothing now.

Doesn't he look good astride an FJR?

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On CA 299 headed to Cedarville CA and then back to 395 via Modoc CR-9 which Garmin and my map showed as paved. We verified it is not. Thus we got to see Fort Burwell and to ride over Cedar Pass twice 😁!


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On our way back to Cedarville post CR-9 discovery.

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Breakfast in Cedarville - was not food porn worthy - JSNS

Old Cedarville store
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Along US 395 you pass Alkali Lake North of Lakeview OR

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Very smooth this morning
US 395 runs along the shore and the 65 mph speed limit with 45 mph signed corners is great fun!

Still some snow here and there on our way up 395 to John Day OR. Very little traffic! Lots of BMWs headed to the National BMW MOA Rally in Redmond OR, just 150 miles to the West.

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OR 245 from Unity to Baker City OR is a sweet ride! IYKYK!

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The right handed corners in the twisty bits of the Second half of 245 were somewhat challenging as someone in a vehicle ahead if us, likely dragging a trailer, had clipped every apex and drug gravel onto the pavement in just about every right hand curve. I almost went down in one corner when I didn't see and avoid some of the gravel😣.

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We are at the Oregon Trail Motel in Baker City, site of last years "Why Not Rally" and worth a return visit.

Highest temp today was 91f around John Day OR. Forecast looks cooler tomorrow and on into the weekend. No rain in sight :)!

Early tomorrow morning we will head down into Hells Canyon and then into Idaho. Not certain where we will end up Friday night.
Home Sunday night as SWMBO advises the AC has quit and the repair guy is scheduled for Monday. I have keeps to do for the Black Hills Rendezvous anyhow.

Stay tuned!
 
14 June - Baker City OR to Challis ID - 406 miles

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We left Baker City at 0700 and headed East towards Hells Canyon, it was a cool and beautiful morning with fabulous vistas

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First stop - Flat White and Brekky!
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After Breakfast we continued East toward the Canyon - more vistas -

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Eventually we made it to the bottom and ride along Oxbow Lake

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We stopped in at "Oh Honey", Cambridge ID for a F L A T W H I T E !
One of the best of the trip so far!

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The FJR had required the jump box to start in Baker City, it needed it again in Cambridge.

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So much fun!

A long break midday in the Boise area searching and ultimately finding and installing a new battery into the FJR.

After Boise we headed North East up ID-21 to Lowman then up 75 to Stanley before continuing on to Challis along the Salmon River. Not much traffic once clear of Idaho City on 21. A great ride, Brian's new "Favorite Road " man be Stanley to Challis, at least this evening.

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Along the Paiute River.

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IYKYK -and if you don't you should!

The Sawtooth Mountains are always spectacular!
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Death by windscreen
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The view from the motel

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Tomorrow takes us North through Salmon ID then over to Wisdom MT, onto I-15, then I-90, to Laurel MT before we head South to Red Lodge MT.
 
15 June 2024 Challis ID to Red Lodge MT. 431 miles - 8.5 hours -
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~11,000 miles since May 11, 2024.
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We left Challis ID at 0800. Temps were in the low 50's as we headed North to Salmon ID on US 93 along the rapidly flowing Salmon River

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We stopped for a Flat White in Salmon ID,
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The gentleman in the blue cap bought our coffee.

The coffee was good, but would have been much better in a paper or China cup. Styrofoam is just 🤔 - 😧!
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We then continued up US-93 But clouds were building to our West and South West so we stopped to close vents and change gloves before turning East on MT-43 through Wisdom MT.
We ran through a few showers between 93 and Wisdom, just enough to soften the bugs on the windscreen.

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We turned North on MT-569 to MT-1 near Anaconda, and then East on I-90 to Columbus MT

We stopped in Three Forks MT for a bio-break and a Flat White.

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And Festar finally caught me out - He has been trying for weeks, LOL

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The Cherry Cheese Danish was excellent!

When we left Three Forks there was a big thunder cell moving across I-90 in our path so we sat for 15 minutes to let it clear. Then rode I-90 to Columbus MT and took MT-78 to Red Lodge.

Dinner was a reprise of our 2014 Red Lodge visit, Pizza and Beers at the Red Lodge Pizza Company.

Tomorrow morning we will get an early start, Beartooth, Chief Joseph, breakfast in Cody, Ten Sleep, Cloud Peak Skyway (US-16) Buffalo WY then slab it to Spearfish on I-90. A bit over 400 miles and eight hours riding time. Should be home for supper.
 
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