From: Jodi Lee
Date: Tue, 14 May 1996
Subject: BMW: Lost Coast report
It was my first rally! Almost 900 miles later, I've discovered MANY things.
First, it's truly wonderful to meet and ride with my fellow Prez friends in person. THANKS Roozbeh for organizing it !! Carlo from Antwerp arrived in the states early. Had a chance to visit a few days before he hopped on my extra K75. We'll wait for HIS trip report. 20 Prezzes in attendance--Dan Arnold-WA, BrianCurry- PA, Duner Tor-MT, Greg Thomas-OR, Delf Farvo- WA, the California group- Rooz, Edson & son, Alice Raia, the Childers, Earl Fleisher, Damun Gracenin, David Brick, JF Jim Brown, Jim White, Steve Heywood, and Ken Morrow. We missed Joe Denton! We shared stories, cigars, port, pitchers of beer ........
Second, I kept at my own pace, pushed myself only when comfortable, and know my limits. It was my first long ride. 5 weeks after my accident - still a gimp [big thanks to everyone who helped steady me!]
The rides were glorious! The Lost Coast, 22, 299, 3,36, 1, 20. A little gravel and dirt, a few washed out lanes, but still PERFECT ! Mildly put, it was euphoric!
My odometer went completely wonky. NEED a new seat -- stock seat is little more than a piece of foam on a 2x4. Finally got a throttle lock. NEED a fairing. Still don't like the tank bag -- but damn, it's convenient! WANT a new Roadster!!!
Hotel Jodi now closed for renovations. You guys gotta put the seat down!!
Dreading the return to work today !
From: Greg Thomas
Date: Wed, 15 May 96
Subject: BMW: lost coast
i guess the california riders areen't going to elaborate on the GREAT roads we traversed, so i thought i'd provide a norwesters point of view. delf came down from seattle thursday night so we could ride down together. it always amazes me how nice the people are who i have meet first on this list serv and latter face to face, delf was no exception.
friday was an early start for the run for the border, i-5. there is one nice section of this interstate in the sourthern part of or, however, nice clean high speed sweepers up and down 3 consecutive passes. we choose to ride ca96 from i-5 west. this road runs along side the klamath river, either right on the flood plain or up and over and around the various terain that makes up river valleys. i have to recommend this ride to any of you who get the chance. i don't think there is a stretch of road longer that 3/4 mile that is straight! the only down side was the 30+ miles of greasey tar strips, really opened your eyes to jump right or left while leaned over.
ca96 ends at ca299, the scene of the next days ride. we got to ride the very fast sweepers over the coast range downhill on friday. found one of the chp's hiding spots, you'd be toast coming uphill and not have a clue where the car came from! 101 south to eureka found us in the sunshine. you have to remember that the eureka/arcata area is the fog capital of the world so this was quite an event. imagine our surprise when we went to check in and the clerk asked if we minded being housed in our own "wing" of the motel. and then we went around the corner to find the famous ibmwr banner hanging from the balcony, thank you brian, still did't get the story straight as to how it got from georgia to california, really cool!
friday night we all met at the lost coast brew pub but unfortunately all of eureka was there so the group was split up. i didn't find out about the presidents accident till the next day, what an unfortunate set of events. all of us were down in the mouth at that news.
sat am the herd of cats was pointed at the somoa cookhouse for breakfast. somoa was a company town, l-p, set up to house and feed the workers who worked for the lumber company. this was a fairly typical scenario in the nw were the logging camps were quite remote. this is the origianal builing and worth a look if your a history buff. the airlock entry has about 200 coat hooks, the kitchen must be 4000 to 5000 sq feet, quite a place.
following breakfast, the cats refused to be herded! the group got split when no one was looking despite a valient attempt by rooz to get everything started. we did know that we would be meeting in weaverville for lunch. i headed out with the group lead by roozbeh (boff, idiot and then perp). it was clear as we were flying up the 4 lanes of sweepers on 299 that i was going to spend some time in my own riding envelope. this was not a group of squids, this was a group of very skilled, read FAST, riders. when i got passed leaned over doing 85, i rethought my plan of keeping up, no way could i do this, and slowed down and enjoyed scenery that is impossible to describe. this route follows the trinity river once over the coast mountains. from deep sheer canyons to flat river bars, the road was clean and fast, lots of joebagos however with not many marked passing points. river rafters, kayakers and lots of interesting activity on the water, made me wish i was in a cage so i could do more observing.
nature requested that i stop at the only rest area before weaverville. low and behold there were the rest of the cats, i thought this group was behind me when in fact they had left eureka ahead of the rooz pack. folks had their boots off, laying in the sun and soaking up the day. i had a need to ride so i did my indy pit stop and hit the road again. no tail lights ahead, no headlights behind, my own time on a superior road.
just before weaverville, came around a corner to find 2 chp cars with "the weaverville 5" all lights going, quite a show. found two other riders already in weaverville, they had just come by the same scene. another major damper on the ride, expecially for the 5 who paid for all. the cat herd once again was shuffling this way and that up and down the sidewalks of weaverville, i had to get moving, so delf and i set out to ride ca 3 down to the often mentioned ca 36 for our afternoon ride back. now i have to tell you that ca 3 is another outstanding mc road. this section is only about 35 miles but it is a corkscrew from beginning to end, over and down a couple of 4k passes. just watch out for the deer! ca36 was a let down for me because the road is in such poor condition, winter really took its tole on this one.
sat pm it was back to the lost coast brew pub, this time jodi had a reservation for all of us so the stories were bolder, the laughter louder and the consumption heavier, great time. then cigars and port in the parking lot at the motel till the gm shooed everyone back to their rooms.
sunday was fast and direct, early start, and headed for the barn. delf and i gassed in grants pass and peeled down to t-shirts under our outers, it was quite warm. by the time we passed albany, we had to stop and redress, it was starting to spit. at my turn off, delf got into his full rain gear and prepared himself for the ensuing downpour we could see to the north. i was able to slip into the garage 20 minutes before the skies opened up.
you ca riders are way to modest about these tremendous roads. any of you coming out this way, mark your maps, you won't be disappointed. btw, jodi, remember to leave the seat up when your done ;-))
From: Brian Curry
Date: 21 May 1996
Subject: BMW: Lost Coast, and Eastern Perspective (long)
This trip did not begin auspiciously. On my first visit to the airport, I was not able to travel a day early on my plane ticket. A trip home and back again, set up the flight as a frequent flyer flight and I was on my way, accompanied by 78 lbs of DKW engine and other motorcycle parts masquerading as baggage.
The baggage got out to SFO with me, so I lugged it over to the Spaghetti Factory for Carlo's dinner. There I finally met Carlo, Michael the Milkman and others, that I had seen messages from, but never met in person. Being on the "right" coast at this time, lowered the anxiety level a lot. Plus, the service was great. They did a good job of getting me in synch with those who had arrived earlier.
Thursday, I picked up the WC bike, packed the WC, and lightened myself by 78 lbs while Kari increased by 78 lbs. We were ready to roll on Friday.
Friday dawned gorgeous. Jodi and I left Alameda, crossed the Richmond-San Rafael bridge, and journeyed to Petaluma to pick up Alice Raia. Seeing the traffic heading into the city, I was glad we were on the way out. Northward the threesome swept, running through the "sweepers" of 101. A slight jog and we were off 101 and running through the Avenue of the Giants. Here my thoughts kept wandering to thinking of the original loggers. Venturing into dark forests of huge trees. No roads. Working your way in from the coast. Moving the trees and lumber from the forest to the coast with animal and steam power. No H-4's for them.
At Grant Flat we headed over the Mattole Road for Honeydew and the Lost Coast. This was interesting except for the brain dead "driver" of the rental motor home, who thought his part of the road was in the center, and an appropriate speed was ~15 mph. This road crosses the coast range from the valley 101 is in to the coast. The winter was hard on these roads. The soils are unstable when wet. In some cases the hillside dropped onto the road. In other cases, the hillside carried the road down to the valley when it dropped. And, in some cases it could not make up it's mind and simply slumped a bit and stopped. It did make for "interesting" road surfaces as it went from paved to packed gravel to voids.
The Lost Coast was gorgeous. While blowy and cool, it was sunny, _real sunny_. First time I have seen it sunny. :)
Over the Bear River Ridge and into Ferndale. Another first, a _sunny Ferndale._ :)
A few more miles and we were into Eureka and at the Thunderbird. First people there too. Registered and hit the room and shower. The second floor railing provided an excellent place to hang the IBMR banner and it was quickly in place. It looked good with the sun shining on it. This was almost scary. This was the first in about 5 visits to Eureka that had a blue sky. Normally I found it under a heavy overcast, blowy, and colder than a witches tit. I was prepared for some type of catastrophe. However, no earthquakes, tornados, hurricanes, or torrential thunderstorms arrived. :)
Thinking it might be good to group us together, I went over to office and found David Brick registering. I asked the desk about putting us together (heh, heh), as best they could, and they changed David's room. The group quickly grew larger as more and more people arrived.
Off to dinner we went, which has already been covered.
Saturday dawned like Friday. Clear and blue. After a filling repast at the Samoa Cook house, off we went again, over 299 to Weaverville. One item of note here is that while stopped at a rest area another non IBMWR group of bikers swept in and out. There were more than IBMWR's Prezidents out there on those roads. In Weaverville we heard the tale of woe. While hanging out in front of the Deli, a familiar appearing stranger showed up. It turned out, the stranger was Dan Arnold, who I had never met but looked so familiar.
Taking on sustenance and drink, Jodi, JF Brown and I swept out of Weaverville and took the southerly route. Route 3 through Hayfork, to 36, Fortuna and back to Eureka. These roads were great. Nice coordinated sweepers that needed no brakes, only throttle to sweep through them. These roads, like the others, showed the effects of winter. Since I had crossed 36 last fall, I had a clear before and after view. The highway departments will have their hands full this year, just recovering the highways, let alone improving them. :) Route 36 follows the Van Duzen River. There are several flat areas where there were mills, that are no more. There are even a few of the sawdust burners that will never burn again. The hills surrounding these areas show that it will be years before there is a need for mills in these areas again. This route also had great views out to the sea from the high points before we dropped to the coast again.
We were first to the Thunderbird again, and had plenty of time to clean up for din-din. Then we waited, and waited. Finally, the northern scenic route party returned. We breathed a sigh of relief. :)
Sunday, we broke our fast at a walking distance eatery. Gathering ourselves together, we departed down 101. It was spooky through the Avenue of the Giants again, particularly with all the bicyclists. We lost people (intentionally) as we went down 101 and people split off who needed to be home earlier.
Off 101 and onto 1 to the coast. When we reached the coast we found bodies stretched along the highway unbending their backs. :) JF noted that he thought his clutch was going south. The transmission end looked good, but lever end was invisible inside the hand protector. (More on this in a separate post.)
At Fort Bragg, Damun gave us a scenic tour of the harbor finding his favorite restaurant. After lunch, more splits occurred with some heading direct for Willits and 101 and others continuing down 1 to Scaggs Creek Road before turning inland to 101. Route 1 turned out to be a good choice based on temperature. It was nice and comfortable, and when we reached 101 the day had started to cool off, and the temps were nice and moderate inland.
We continued to shed people as we traveled south. Carlo and I reached Alameda about five minutes after Jodi and JF Brown arrived. They had taken an "ice cream" break in Hopland.
For the eastern contingent, while it did not begin auspiciously, it was an excellent trip. The best weather I have ever experienced on the North Coast. No tickets. No drops. This was the first long ride I had taken on twisties with my single vision glasses. They are much better than the bifocals. No scary distortion, and a much larger field of sharp vision.
Next year, or later this year????.....
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