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Discussion Starter · #21 · (Edited)
We arrived in Shaniko to a semi-ghost style town with no gas and only one place open. It was a small old-school diner that served.......MILKSHAKES! The best one on the trip by far, because as we all know a milkshake is milk and ice cream, not vanilla with chocolate syrup. We met a grade 6 science teacher on his GS1200 that was travelling alone and talked our ear off for a few minutes. What we found comical was that we all moved so we weren't down-wind from him, he had a full one piece suit on in the crazy heat and was ..... "marinating" to a level we couldn't handle. He finally left and so did we (without him tagging on thank god) on our way to Tygh Valley for some gas. By the time we finally got there a few of us were on fumes, Speedy surprisingly had the 2nd most left out of the 4 bikes which is yet another reason why I love this bike. Ripping it hard, using reasonable levels of gas. After gas we headed onwards to the Columbia River area and towards Stevenson which was our destination for the night. Oregon had one last masterpiece for us before we left, Rowena Crest Viewpoint Road. We got to the viewpoint, up the 3 mile or so racetrack-like road and stopped. Ron and I turned around and rode it back down, then back up so we could get some photos and video, another sexual experience on a motorcycle only dwarfed by the Shaniko/Fossil ride earlier that day.

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We reluctantly left and headed towards our hotel. As we got off the highway to cross the bridge we passed a thumper on the corner asking for money. As we rode past he changed his sign around......"NEED WEED". As we crossed the bridge I was wondering if that was a question or a statement? And regardless of which it was, was anyone stopping on an off-ramp to satisfy his/their needs? Isn't it legal here anyways? Good times. We arrived at the hotel and went out for dinner. Great little brewery with an outside eatery that had FANTASTIC food. Was a great end to the day as we jovially laughed about moments from throughout.

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After dinner I went down to the water to find a spot to drink my bomber. Found a great spot looking over the river. As I watched the sun set all I could think about was the roads I experienced today and that I know I will be coming back for more than one of them.

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First day good, second day was GREAT, today......was EPIC.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 · (Edited)
Day 4: Stevenson - Nanaimo

So day 4, things had been very good so far on our trip and I think we were all pretty much in the mindset of making sure we all finished strong with no ....... "issues". The Rodeway Inn that night was an OK place to stay with the exception that their breakfast was pretty weak, not one piece of fruit in that room thats for sure. We hadn't planned to stop for a few hours at Randle to eat so a few of us forced some toast down while others decided to just wait. This morning was much colder than the other days on our ride, I had brought some cold weather gloves (waterproof) and a warm thermal shirt just in case but had thought I was a lunatic until now. I left the stuff in my bags and proceeded towards Northwoods and into the mountains for our morning ride. As we started to hit some of the densely wooded areas the temperature plunged and we almost immediately pulled over to switch to warmer gear. Thank god I had brought what I did cause that was a cold couple of hours. Immediately as we started up again we came around a bend to massive wall of brown in the middle of the road. We slowed down and recognized the herd of about 100 Elk that were crossing the road, taking in the early morning moment for all it was. At about 100 yards I stopped and waited for them to finish their crossing to have one of the larger animals slow down, stop, and stare us down. Quick rev of speedy to remind them of their place and off they went into the woods.....pretty cool. We rode onwards to the viewpoint of Mt. St. Helens. One thing needs to be said about this road, and I'm pretty sure someone here actually suggested this to be true....... Nutcruncher. I have never been on a road with so many washouts, potholes, frost heaves, and road fissures in my life. At one point I hit a first heave and my rear wheel came off the ground about 8 inches, I imagine my saddle bags became my Red Bull wings at that moment. We stopped for a break to warm up our hands in the sun and take one of the very few photos for the day.

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We nut-crushed our way up to Randle and the Mt Adams Cafe, which provided me with my much needed liquid ice cream fix and a solid meal, My breakfast burrito was more potato than anything, and about the size of my head so I didn't need to eat much of it to be full. We all laughed about how insane the road was and took the opportunity to switch into cooler gear again since things were warming up. Most of the rest of our day was highways with a small sojourn (as can be seen on route link) into some country roads. They were actually a lot more fun than anticipated and again I was grateful for the DH Maps for their solid reliable advice on what to expect. Today was the day we saw the most police presence, one after another, and realized near the end of the day that the training facility, penitentiary, and dispatch for the entire state was off that Interstate. Good day to keep the throttle hand in check. We hit a small patch of sprinkling rain as we headed up the Olympic Peninsula but it wasn't anything major, the worst part was trying to tolerate the traffic all the way up. Nothing a few multiple car passes couldn't take care of....... We eventually hit the Ferry terminal and relaxed waiting for our sailing. Our trip was for the most part over with the exception of riding up island and home.


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We got off the ferry and went through customs, no issues there. Victoria was having a big festival so the street were lively with people and vendors and other type of entertainment. Was early evening and a nice scene to arrive to. So here comes the fun part. Anyone familiar with our area will have heard of the Malahat. It is the only highway up the island without going out and around (about 3.5 hours at night time) down paved logging roads to get up to Nanaimo. We hit traffic so bad that a drive that should have taken us 20 minutes was almost 2 hours. We literally clutched our way all the way up the entire thing. By the time we reached the top we needed a short break and I had to put on my clear visor since it was now dark. Ron, on the older FJ1200 decided to take the long way around since his engine wouldn't stay cool idling up a hill for a long time. We beat him home, but only by an hour or so, and he actually got to be riding. I wondered which was the better choice. The three of us remaining blasted down the dark highway home. It really started to pour rain and at this point we just put the pedal down and blasted home. As we hit Nanaimo it dried up and voila, back in my driveway to my smiling wife and (as usual) even happier German Shepherd.

This had been a really great time for me. This no doubt is the last time pops (at the age of 68 ) will make the journey across the country to do another ride with me. I never say never but at the same time like to value it for what it was, a great chance to spend 4 days together that may never happen again. I have left out a lot of stories and laughs but am trying not to bore you with all my useless BS. All you need to know is we all had the best time we could have, and at least three of us will be riding OR and WA again in the future. Thanks for following along any of you that cared and hope to see some of you (try to keep up) on the roads here in Canadia next summer.
 

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That would be the one, Dave. Yeah.

I hear it's actually worse now than it was back in 2011, but I haven't been up there recently.
 

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This had been a really great time for me. This no doubt is the last time pops (at the age of 68 ) will make the journey across the country to do another ride with me. I never say never but at the same time like to value it for what it was, a great chance to spend 4 days together that may never happen again. I have left out a lot of stories and laughs but am trying not to bore you with all my useless BS. All you need to know is we all had the best time we could have, and at least three of us will be riding OR and WA again in the future. Thanks for following along any of you that cared and hope to see some of you (try to keep up) on the roads here in Canadia next summer.
Great trip report and great you could do it with your Dad! Invite him back for the 2018 ride, there's a couple of us with higher birthday counts that'll be headed your way.

Cheers
 

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Great loop, I've done a 4-6 day ride through the PNW every year. I've got up to the Crownsest highway in BC, East to Going-to-the-sun-road, South to Northern CA and Northern NV, and West as far as you can literally go (101 the whole way). You hit some great roads! I think we need to compare notes, because we like the same things. I have video of me and my friend running repeatedly through the exact set of corners you took a picture of in your Fossil-Shaniko section :) Regrettably you went right past a couple fantastic parallel options that are even better than the main roads, so you're gonna have to come down and do a few parts of your loop again, but we'll go together next time.

No, seriously, let's team up next summer.
 
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