Author Topic: The Plan, or lack there of.  (Read 2361 times)

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Offline smithr1

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The Plan, or lack there of.
« on: March 23, 2017, 05:42:26 pm »
So I am very lucky to be thinking of retiring at the end of the year.  I will be 59yo but since I have been in this same state job for 38+ years my pension will be like 90% of my salary.  Cool, so whats the plan.

I have ridden a lot of the US but hardly at all west of Colorado/Idaho Falls.  My SO has to work a few more years so I thought I would just take off in the spring next year on my own and wonder that way.  Maybe just west US but maybe all the way up to Alaska.  I might have a couple months to play.  Might stay south till warm drives me north and if so lucky, north till cold drives me south and home again.

My thought was to not plan the trip much at all.  At least not the daily parts.  I was thinking of entering points of interest (to me) into the gps and once I get to one decide which one I want to do next.  Along the way I collect memories and scenes I might paint later.  Also while on the bike I might write a few songs to play with the band.  Other then seeing new things I have no other agenda.  Well I guess part of my agenda is to see if I am still in love with this riding thing or if I am ready to cut back some and paint, invent and play drums more.

If you have thoughts, ideas, encouragement, discouragement for me I would love to hear it. 
---
Bob Smith (smithr)
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2017, 08:35:55 pm »
Assuming you mean "Spring in Texas", you'll have to stay in the South for a few months..
  (b'kuz, it's still snowing up yonder"...)

Other than that, talk to yer SO/Boss,,, and,, Do it!!

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Offline SteveJ.

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2017, 10:12:02 pm »
First off, congrats. Retirement does not suck.

When traveling like this, talk to the locals. Stop at the motorcycle shops. They really know the good roads and hidden secrets for places to stay and eat. And they usually have the coffee on. One of my favorite dealers is Sunsports in Gunnison, CO. My KLR is even sporting one of their free stickers. Good folks, long time same owner, also a decent human being. West end of town on the north side of US50.

Always carry a meal or two in your kit. You never know when you may stumble upon a really, really cool place to camp.

Do not carry a handgun into Canada. Or mace, but I believe bear spray is OK. Buy a bear banger kit up there, great fun even if a bit spendy. Have some poutine while there.

Get Hyderized in Hyder, AK.

Enjoy.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2017, 10:54:00 pm by SteveJ. »
Yeah, if you want true ram air tuning, you better be willing to ram some air! (SiSF)
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Offline NinjaBreadMan

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2017, 11:26:26 pm »
If you haven't explored west of Colorado, you are really missing out.  There is tremendous riding territory in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Northern California, British Columbia, and Alberta.  It would be easy to spend a year in that region if you wanted, get out and see some fantastic countryside.  Best wishes on your retirement, and happy trails!
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Offline worncog

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2017, 12:59:07 am »
Ever heard of the IBA National Parks Tour? Great excuse to insert great roads in between stamp destinations. You get to see some of Americas greatest sights and they have campgrounds at almost every location.

I finished my second just recently and enjoyed both of them immensely. Oh, and they have an app for that.  ;)

Randy
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Offline Red Fox

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2017, 10:37:12 pm »
Nice for you!  Anytime from mid-April to early June would be prime time to visit New Mexico, northern Arizona, Utah, Nevada.

I wouldn't worry about personal security, like carrying a gun.  I've been over fair part of the west, some camping off dirt tracks 1/2 mile off paved roads, and no problems.
We can camp where we want: USFS and BLM land is open - not so state lands or any parks.  They have campgrounds there.
If I were camping near a metropolois I would choose a KOA / RV park or take that night for a motel stay because that is a different problem.

I would second the suggestion to talk with locals, not just in motorcycle shops, but in cafes, restaurants, bars, visitor sites, rest areas, everywhere.   These have made such a difference to me in being away from home.  Maybe bring a dozen of printed photos from your area /  your life to break the ice.

You'll have a wonderful time.  Hope you post up a trip report accompanied by 2% of the photos you took. 



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Offline Old Man on a Connie

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2017, 11:14:26 pm »
Check in with us Bob. We can get ya around the SW. Don't forget the CA coast which is bucket list. Lot's of stuff to see and do besides roads which I think your looking for. Pretty sure many members in the SW would be happy tpo put you up for a night and listen to your stories. Lucky Man. Wish I could do.
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Offline smithr1

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2017, 06:28:59 pm »
Hey there those who have traveled before.  Help me build my list of roads, scenes and attractions I can not miss on my trip.   Mainly interested in anything west of a line between Albuquerque and Idaho Falls.  I may get a passport though and head up into Canada.
---
Bob Smith (smithr)
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Offline RWulf

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2017, 08:39:58 pm »
Make sure you get your National Park Golden Horizon Pass.
Any park head quarters has them. Will save you a bundle.

Offline smithr1

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #9 on: April 12, 2017, 12:37:14 pm »
I am still milling over how much/often I want to camp.  Does KOA do a season pass or something? 

I need a new tent.  I want something that goes up in seconds... Like a kids pop up toy tent only perfect for the bike.

Come on I know you guys know every cool road out there?

Ill start.   Is Crater Lake in Or. worth a trip around?
---
Bob Smith (smithr)
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Offline mr t

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #10 on: April 12, 2017, 01:00:17 pm »
Yes on Crater Lake- Also Glacier N.P.- Black Hills area- Western CO.- PCH-Lolo Pass- Moab area and so much more. Have a great time!

  Tom Taylor COG#7173

Offline RWulf

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #11 on: April 12, 2017, 01:06:24 pm »
If Crater Lake is a national park you will get in free or reduced price.
And it's worth it also Glacier have a good time and do it all.

Offline smithr1

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #12 on: April 12, 2017, 01:31:15 pm »
What part/s of the PCH are best?
---
Bob Smith (smithr)
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Offline Old Man on a Connie

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #13 on: April 12, 2017, 11:18:40 pm »
All of it except long beach and LA. The scenery and average speeds just change if ya know what I mean  ;) From San Diego the traffic is congested, average speed is below 25 mph but the scenery is a special kind of nature. From Ventura to San Fran speeds increase, twisties are back, coastal plain views are awesome. This is where the foothills meet the beach. Good stretches between towns. From San Fran up the redwoods meet the coast, speed drops again but just because the road gets more technical and twisty. Called the lost coast. Many itty bitty small coastal towns and the scenery is something you won't see anywhere. I compare it to Maine's coast road up north with more cliffs and Big A$$ trees. Take a right on the 299 just north of Eureka to Redding. This road will blow your mind.
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Offline SteveJ.

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #14 on: April 13, 2017, 10:53:49 am »
Hey there those who have traveled before.  Help me build my list of roads, scenes and attractions I can not miss on my trip.   Mainly interested in anything west of a line between Albuquerque and Idaho Falls.  I may get a passport though and head up into Canada.

Get the passport. You will discover why. And this year is free admittance to Canadian national parks.

On TDY at Big Bend. And yes, I've hit 170 between Lajitas and Presidio. It is on my top 2% list.

Most of the pop up tents are quite large and heavy unless you get one that is small like a coffin. There are threads around on decent tents that are quick to set and break down and have other redeeming issues. Tent choices can spring an oil/tire like thread but I and a few others have had good luck with Alps mountaineering. They also have excellent US based follow up service based in Missouri and pricing is quite reasonable.

They recently sent out two poles for free cuz one of mine split. This is on an eight year old tent. I've had to replace the fly after six years, about $40 to the door. I have the Extreme 3. Nice for one, decent for two, three you better be really "close" friends. And it will take a pretty good storm and stay upright and keep you dry. Unlike the Coleman that  had that got literally shredded first time out down in the Keys. It lasted two and a half nights.
Yeah, if you want true ram air tuning, you better be willing to ram some air! (SiSF)
Steve J  Tavares, FL, one of the Floriduh Steves
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Offline smithr1

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2017, 12:53:29 pm »
Thanks guys, good stuff.  I got a year to not plan so keep it coming. 

So I am wondering about SW New Mexico, SE Arizona.  Near the Gila N.F.  I was thinking I would miss this area for exploring more north in the state but is there any awesome I am missing?  I can't tell if some of those roads are paved or not.  Like 159 and 152 near Alma and Silver City.
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Bob Smith (smithr)
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Offline smithr1

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #16 on: April 13, 2017, 01:08:41 pm »
The tent I have is a lot like this one.  It served me well and was not horrible to set up.  I could try to referb it but wonder if I can upgrade.  Whats your favorite and why?

https://www.rei.com/product/110837/rei-co-op-passage-2-tent
---
Bob Smith (smithr)
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Offline Old Man on a Connie

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #17 on: April 13, 2017, 11:16:57 pm »
Thanks guys, good stuff.  I got a year to not plan so keep it coming. 

So I am wondering about SW New Mexico, SE Arizona.  Near the Gila N.F.  I was thinking I would miss this area for exploring more north in the state but is there any awesome I am missing?  I can't tell if some of those roads are paved or not.  Like 159 and 152 near Alma and Silver City.
I rode SE AZ last year and some fun roads. LOT's of History. Bisbee was cool with some great bldgs. and architecture. The mine there is mind blowing. Tombstone was cool to see but the only tour I would drop a dime on is the birdcage theater. Period correct and true. The OK corral tour was Meh. Had some good stuff but then you get to the store mannequins dressed as the earps buried to the ankles to hold them up and you just get sad. Yuma has some great history at the CO river. The Territorial prison and the Army supply depot dating to the civil war period are good tours. I'm told the devils hwy that runs No/So between AZ and NM is a fantastic ride. Haven't done it yet but it's on my short list. Cent AZ from Prescott to Flagstaff by way of Sedona has some great roads and excellent scenery. You think AZ you imagine desert but this is all mountains and trees. It snow's there in the winter. From Flagstaff north into CO and East UT you travel monument valley and the Indian Nations. Nothing special about the road's there but the scenery and vistas are stunning. You also have the choice there of heading to NM, UT or CO. Decisions decisions.
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Offline who me?

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #18 on: April 14, 2017, 01:25:09 am »
I am still milling over how much/often I want to camp.  Does KOA do a season pass or something? 

I need a new tent.  I want something that goes up in seconds... Like a kids pop up toy tent only perfect for the bike.

Come on I know you guys know every cool road out there?

Ill start.   Is Crater Lake in Or. worth a trip around?
Dont know if they still do BUT KOA has/had a discount program with AMA
IIRC AMA members got a KOA discount card
I have no idea about anything.
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Offline smithr1

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #19 on: April 14, 2017, 03:30:28 pm »
So I was thinking what would help the most is if anyone that knows of a road or view that just can not be missed put it here as a GPS location.  If you drop a pin on google maps it gives you a GPS location.   This would be much better then saying PCH and gives me/us the location of places that you guys know are the most awesome.  It is also something you can do from home or office.  We can also build it as a data base maybe for everyone to use.

Here is an example of one that I was at just weekend before last.

337 in Tx
29.727669, -99.656597

I really am only looking for locations that have the best ever riding or scene that is worth driving days to get to.   If this works we can maybe expand east but for my trip I am only interested west of Co.
---
Bob Smith (smithr)
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Offline JimBob

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2017, 06:16:16 pm »
Plan a route that gives you a chance to ride CO's Trail Ridge road...but in June. Usually opens late May. One end is in Estes Park, which is a beautiful town (also where the Stanley Hotel is- from the movie The Shining - take the tour, it's about 40 min). There's a very nice YMCA in Estes, I know they rent cabins, not sure if they have campsites. The Y also has a facility on the other side of Trail Ridge, called Snowy Range (if I remember right) - it definitely has campsites.


SW CO - Black Canyon of the Gunnison - incredible (from what I've seen in pics and vids - looking to get there this summer).


For a tent, check out Black Pine. Talk about instant up - we have a 4-man that takes less than 2 minutes to setup. Pretty amazing. I would assume their smaller ones would work similarly.


http://www.blackpinesports.com/tents/[/font]


Offline notsluggo

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2017, 08:15:45 pm »
Utah 12 from Torrey (hotel recommendation: Austin's Chuck Wagon) south to the intersection with 89 (close to 120 miles).
89 south to 14 west into Cedar City.
This is an AWESOME day ride.

I've ridden this route multiple times and cannot wait for my next opportunity.

When coming down 12 and passing through Boulder, there is one point where the highway makes a 90 degree turn.  The road off the tip of this turn (Burr Trail Rd) will take you back into a canyon that will have you thinking of the land before time.  Incredible area.
Ride safe(r).
- notsluggo
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Offline Ping Jockey

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2017, 08:25:57 pm »
Butler Maps, that's all I gotta say.and again BUTLER MAPS..and ride the gold roads, ALL of them, you'll have a blast. And if your coming through SoCal say hey and maybe catch some riding with you.
Sometimes you gotta stop riding the twisties and take a look at where you are.

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Offline fred-houston

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2017, 08:40:37 pm »
45.124032, -116.835712

One of my top ten spots.
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Offline ConcoursKZ

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Re: The Plan, or lack there of.
« Reply #24 on: April 14, 2017, 09:06:13 pm »
Just ride and figure out as you go.
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