|Here we are all loaded and ready to roll.
|We head up Hwy 14, Poudre Canyon. we have to pull over and put the rain gear on, no big deal.
We stop for a picture at the top of Cameron Pass
|Looks a lot different than last time we went to World Superbike. That was 2011 and the race was in Utah at Miller,
it was also earlier in the year over Memorial day weekend.
Everything is going great. We stop in Walden for Gas and decide Steamboat will be a good place to stop for lunch. So 14 ends and we get on Hwy 40 West towards Steamboat. The raingear stays on until the lunch stop.
|After Lunch we continue down 40 West through Craig and past Dinosaur National Monument.
|I was excited to get My son's first state welcome sign. We have ridden before, but never out of state.
But when we got to the border two Haliburton trucks were hogging up the welcome to Utah sign, so I figured we could get one on the way back home.
So Hwy 40 into Utah, and Past Vernal.
Somewhere on Hwy 40 in Utah. We are looking for Duchesne and Hwy 191 for our next turn. The map I have also shows camping in Duchesne
|Up til now I have not mentioned who is riding which bike.|
Well, my son has more experience riding the S. But I want him to see what the big K bike is like too. So in Vernal when we stop for gas I let him ride the K bike.
No big deal, just a detail.
Where was I? Oh yes, Hwy 191.
Hwy 191 south out of Duchesne is a beautiful road. Nice little canyon. not too technical. It's 7:30 by now, still plenty of light but the road is mostly in the shade so no sun glare. Perfect. But here is where we deviate from the plan.
Since I have moved to Colorado most of my riding is solo. The friends I meet at the races still live in southern California, so we meet most of the way to Austin, or like in this case at the hotel we are staying in at the races. I am used to big mile days. I know my son is not. But I ask him at every stop how he is doing. Talk about the plan, and make adjustments as needed. The last adjustment was to forgo our planned end of night stop and push on one more towns to camp or failing that since it would then be getting too late find a hotel for the night.
So here we are, enjoying this great road. That is open range.
We see a few cows, but not many. I'm not going fast, I'm on the lookout for a place maybe we can stealth camp.
On the right is a dead cow. Dead a while, big, bloated, legs sticking straight out. I point it out to my son.
Not 400 yards later there are two calves on the side of the road, JUST off the road. As soon as I pass I know what is about to happen. One of the calves spooked, he jumped up. I looked in my rear view mirror as the cow bolted onto the highway straight in front of my son. There was nothing he could do. He did get on the brakes he tells me. But there was really no time.
His bike was black, the cow was black, as they merged I lost detail of what happened. All I knew was I could see a black blob down in the middle of the road.
|I turned around and went back.
I pulled over on the shoulder where the K bike ended up, the shoulder for the other direction.
My son was already up and walking around. I told him to sit down and take assessment. Was he hurt?
I went back to the bike. It was on it's side still running. I turned the key off.
Public service announcement. If in the next few months someone needs a K bike motor and they see a 2002 one for sale with 25,000 miles on it, be very warry. This one ran at least a minute with no oil pressure.
|Things started to happen very fast. Everyone who passed stopped. My son was back up.
He now had his jacket, helmet and gloves off. I took a couple of pictures.
|Two of the people who stopped said the cow was still alive.
It was. it was thrashing around in the middle of the road trying to raise it's head.
My son decided he wanted to sit, so he took the sleeping bag off my bike and set it down to sit on. I said if you want to sit we have chairs. So I got him a chair to sit on.
I took more pictures.
By now the cow is off the road and not moving any more. I don't know if it just died, or the two who moved it dispatched it.
|Here is the mark in the road where the cow fell.
|And this is a shot of how far up the road the bike ended up.
|Several people asked if I needed them to make a call. I didn't know if I had cell service so I said yes to all.
One of the people who stopped said he had a friend who operated a tow truck, yes send him, Thank You.
Someone helped me right the bike, it's easily totaled. Do I need to list all that's broken??
|Man I feel bad. I lead my son into an accident.|
Our vacation is over on the first day.
I'm just glad he is up and walking around.
But this is where the story starts to get a little surreal.
I get my phone out and text a friend at home. Can he go to my house and get my trailer and rescue us? YES (Thanks Ron)
I get a call. It's from the tow truck driver. He has heard the cops have been called. He can't just come out, but can I ask the cops to call his company? Yes I will. ???
The cop shows up. License, registration and insurance. Done.
After this cop comes back. wrecker on the way, he will give my son a ride back to town. They will take us to the "Nice" hotel in town.
Ambulance people happy with my son's answers, they have put a wrap on his road rash, say he is 18 and he can refuse a ride to the hospital if he wants, he refuses the ride. They then ask me "You are his dad, do you want him to ride to the hospital?" What? His answer wasn't enough?
The wrecker shows. loads the bike. Cop now comes again. He has a copy of the accident report
(Printed from the printer in his car) and says "the wrecker will give your son a ride into town. I have to deal with this, long story"
So many things are running through my brain.
I call my friend and tell him what has happened. We won't be joining them for the races.
By the time we are in town it is 9:00.
We talk to the hotel clerk. Only thing left open now for dinner is Burger King (It's 10:00 now)
I get some replies to my thread. It starts me thinking. There were several good ones, but this one particular one sums it up best, "find nearest motorcycle dealer, pull out credit card, keep going."
I didn't sleep very well. Finally laid down at midnight, was up at 5 or 6. Took my computer to the lobby and did some reading. BMW dealer in Salt Lake has 2004 K 1200 RS 6500 bucks. A few other nice used bikes too.
I eat breakfast (provided by hotel) and text my friend Ron. I need to know when he will get here. I have already talked to the hotel and asked for a
late check out due to the circumstances. They agree. I just want to tell them what time. Ron's answer, 10 minutes. he drove most of the night.
Slept about 2 hours in his truck . (We both work rotating shifts. Are used to gong on no sleep sometimes)
Next is just waiting for the clock to tick. When my insurance agent opens I call and report the accident. I am transferred to three people who all want a little bit of the story of what happened (Did your son have permission? Where were you going, home, work school? "California" Was he wearing his seat belt? "On a motorcycle?"). While I am talking to the last, an adjuster, the tow truck driver shows up to be paid. $294.00 for a 23 mile tow. Adjuster says that is ridiculous. unless it was something rural. Oh yes, it was rural. Find Hwy 40 and 191 on a map of Utah and go 23 miles south.
10 minutes after they open I call the BMW dealer in Salt Lake. The K RS is already sold, damn. But he has a few bikes. Will take pity on me for my tale of whoa (That's not the right whoa) and give me the best deal he can.
I'm killing time, and the Harley riders start coming out to get going. It's a group from Austria. They rented the bikes in Salt Lake and are heading back there to return the bikes today. end of two weeks on the road for them. then a couple of days at the hotel in Salt Lake and back home. Only a couple of the speak English, but my son's tale gets relayed, well wishes are given. They are off and I'm wondering what's next.
It's now 10:30 and Ron emerges from the Hotel room. I am surprised he is up so early, we had the room until at least noon and I was going to give him another
hour. But I know too, if you can't sleep, you can't sleep.
I have to stop here and say, one of the guys on the motorcycle board offered to let me rent his bike, I thought about it. The downside would be returning it and still needing to get my son, and all his stuff, home after a rental. So while I thank the guy for the offer, I decided it would be a purchase, or the ride would end here.
The drive/ride to Salt Lake is uneventful. I forget what time we got to the dealer. Harrison Eurosports, actually in Sandy Utah by the way.
As Troy walked away to get keys I asked my son. Give me the answer you mean, not the one you think I want to hear.
How much do you want to continue this ride? Cause more than likely any bike I buy here I am just going to sell when we get home.
He really wants to go on. So on to test rides.
All this time Ron had been napping in his truck again. So I woke him up and we got all the bags and stuff and moved them into the
showroom with the empty bags off the Tiger and started making the transfer.
We get stuff organized and repacked. Then put what is going back home in the truck with Ron and finally send him on his way. BTW, the trip to Salt Lake only added 170 miles to his total because it was only 50 miles further to home from Salt Lake than Duchesne.
|And here is the new steed packed and ready to go.
|It was 5:30 by the time we left the dealer. First stop was a drug store to get an
ankle brace and some bandages for my son.
Finally we are on our way again, I -80 West to West Wendover Nevada.
When we hit the Salt Flats the wind kicked up something fierce. We had to reduce speed, it was pushing us sideways and kicking up a lot of salt reducing visibility. That didn't stop us from making a stop at the flats for a picture.
Not far from there to West Wendover, cheap hotels and cheap meals.
And the most expensive free drinks you will ever get. So that was our stop for the night.
|The day dawned early,
who am I kidding? I have an 18 year old with me. We were lucky to get moving by 10:00.
Anyway, Hopefully all of the excitement behind us we are back to two lane running.
|Hwy 93 runs south out of Wendover. That will take us to US 50 which was our planned route through Nevada.
Hwy 93 crosses the old Pony Express trail.
|When we get to Ely, we stop for gas. Pick up Hwy 50. Then on the way out of town stop for a
Photo Opp at this old Richfield station.
Everything you see inside the station is painted on the windows, including the car up on the lift. I think it's kind of neat.
|Being from Colorado I had to stop and get a picture of what passes for a summit in Nevada.
There were lower ones, but I wasn't going to stop at all of them just so I could keep the lowest one.
|The bikes were running great and we were having a good time. No too hot, which was surprising.
We would get the real heat on our way home.
Hwy 93 crosses the old Pony Express trail, but 50 follows it.
|After our gas stop in Austin we took a picture with the "Loneliest Road in America" sign.
Maybe at one time 50 was the loneliest. But we see plenty of traffic.
As we continue West on 50, we wonder what the Navy is doing out here? There is a naval air station and bombing range out here. Not very close to water. Oh well.
We stop again in Fallon for gas and to discuss routing. We are still behind schedule so we decide to hop onto I-80 for the rest of the ride into Sacramento (Where we will spend the night). We also talk weather. While stopped it seems warm, but when moving temps are fine, weather on my phone says it is 91 degrees. Much cooler than I expect in Nevada in July.
West of Fallon on 50 starts to become a pain. Lots of small communities, traffic, lower speed limits. Not the best for trying top make time.
Guess I'll have to show my son that street in Carson city with three "Houses" on it some other time.
|The rest of the ride into Sacramento is uneventful.
We stop at In N Out for the required Burger and Fries (I grew up in California. I don't know what my son's excuse is for the addiction)
Now, until this time my son has been riding in some tattered gear. But I know there is a big Cycle Gear in Sacramento, why we chose here for the stop.
Not up too early because they don't even open until 10:00
My son in his new duds.
The rest of the way to Salinas is not pretty. I-80 to I-680 to Hwy 101.|
I tell my son, this is not Colorado. We will see lots of people. If you stay to far behind me a car will jump in between us.
He does very well dealing with the traffic, and we some good stuff.
At a gas stop I get a call from my insurance company, and I give them the details of the new bike. How do you want to get your proof of insurance card? They fax it to me to an agent in Salinas. I am now 100 miles away, it is 3 hours until they close. With traffic I am not sure I will make it.
We stop at the first exit in Salinas to get gas and look up the address for the insurance agent. It's only 1.3 miles from where we are. Good, cause the close in 15 minutes, and that's when they call me. I tell them where I am and that I'll be right over. I get my card, and we are off to the hotel.
We meet my friends for dinner. They get to hear all of the gory details. I admit I'm glad it was my son and not me, because if it had been me I would probably still be in the hospital. Being young does have it's advantages.
I am remembering something, while talking at dinner the subject came up of my son's gear. I don't remember exactly
what was said, but I do remember what I said about it. "Yea, I got him all the gear even though when I was young my dad never bought me my gear.
Then again my dad never went on a road ride with me either." I know what I was thinking when I said that.
I was very lucky in my younger years. Yes at 17 a car turned left in front of me while I was riding a Honda XL 125. Sore muscles only,
helmet did save my noggin. When I was 31 I overbraked my skill level and went down, Jacket, boots and Helmet worked but I had a hell of a hole in my knee.
Next up is the races. I will have to go through those pictures and see what's good enough to post.
I am of course writing this long after it happened.
Back to the ride report.
|We made it to Laguna Seca where you can find some old race bikes on display.
|Lets not forget the umbrella girls.
|Oh yea, I think there was some racing going on too.
|They added a nice touch on the straight between 4 and 5. Radar was catching the top speed on that straight.
|I did not come to World Super bike last year, my friends did. Their assessment was the crowd was smaller
than last year. On Sunday the track announced the crowd was 30% bigger than last year.
All I know is the hill above turn 2 was almost empty and there were not as many vendors who showed up for the lasr Moto GP race here.
Still more vendors than showed up for the Moto GP at Austin though. Wonder when that race will catch on with the vendors?
|The only American contesting the series
|So on Monday we are back on the road.
We made our way to Fresno, then Hwy 41 to Yosemite National Park. I came in this way just so we could go through the tunnel and get this view
|We went down to the valley floor to get a better look at some of the waterfalls.
That was a mistake. It has been several years since I have been to Yosemite, and traffic is horrendous. It took us about an hour to get off the valley floor and start back up and out so we could get to Hwy 120 and the other side of the Sierras.
It is still a beautiful place to visit, I would just bypass visiting the valley floor itself unless you were going to camp there a day or two.
|As we were heading out over 120 we stopped for this picture at Lake Tenaya. Lots of beautiful scenery all through the park.
|There was no room to stop for a picture by the sign where we came in, so we got this one on the exit.
After going over the pass we hit Hwy 395 and headed South and spent the night in Mammoth Lakes.
|Not many miles today.|
Going sight seeing.
Yesterday was kind of sight seeing too. We could have gotten over the Sierras without going through Yosemite, but hey, the kid has never seen it.
Today will be reliving vacations from my youth.
I gave my son the option, sight seeing, or another day on the road. A chance to see some more different country. He chose the sight seeing.
First stop is Devils Post Pile. With the increase in summer visitors the sign says you must take the shuttle bus down. But after having done that there is still a day use parking area down there. So being on bikes I would ride up to the ranger shack and see if they would let us through with just getting a day use pass. Cause between parking and getting on the bus, then riding the bus back it is over 3 hours to take what amounts to a 1 mile hike total.
|But what you get to see is really neat.
Lava cooled just right to form the columns. It's not the only formation like this, but they are very rare.
|At the top you get to see where the glacier polished the tops and see the shapes of the columns from that perspective.
|Next up, one of my childhood memories gets dashed, we visit the "earthquake fault"
Well, reading the sign I find out it really isn't an earthquake fault. All my years grown up I thought this was the San Andreas fault.
Now I find out it's just a fissure that opened up. Oh well. At least this stop didn't take 3 hours (More like three minutes)
|Also, when I was a kid you got to walk through the fissure along the bottom and look up at the walls.
I guess in the intervening years someone figures out that was a bad idea and no you just get to walk around the outside and look down into it.
|We head down south on 395 to our next stop and run into the first real heat of our trip.
As we drop below 6000 feet the temperatures start to rise.
At least the next stop hasn't lost any luster with time. In fact it has become a real stop.
When I was a kid, this was the only Marker at Manzanar
|Manzanar was a "Relocation Center" for people of Japanese decent during World War II
In 1995 people started holding Rememberances at this site. I guess the government took a clue and they built a real visitors center. They have also started re creating some of the buildings, and a guard tower.
The visitors center has hours, but there is a driving tour you can take at any time.
|This is what the entrance looks like now. You can start your driving tour here,
or from the parking lot of the visitor center. If you are in a car or if you have a passenger there is a guide book that has
descriptions that match with numbered markers along the route.
|At the very back of the site is this marker for the graveyard.
It must have been there every time I have visited, but you can't see it from the spot just off 395 where the old marker used to be.
|And a scale view of what the "Camp" used to be.
We finished the sight seeing up here and headed back north to stay in Bishop for the evening.
|From Bishop we hit Hwy 6 and head into Nevada, and I
finally get my son his first state welcome sign picture.
|And we cheat, cross the street and get the Welcome to California sign too.
|When last we were in Nevada we saw some nice scenery. Now we are on Hwy 6 going to Tonopah..
|After Tonopah we hit Warm Springs and Hwy 375, which looks like this
|They call 375 the Extra Terrestrial Hwy. If you saw the movie Paul it was filmed
out here and at the little diner in Rachel.
So many stickers have been placed you can't even read the sign any more.
|At least you can still get a picture at the wrecker with the captured space ship.
Now, out here on 375 it is open range. as a matter of fact after my son's accident I told him the only time I have actually seen cows where there were open range signs was out here. And again it is true, there are cows out here.
Oddly enough when my son sees cows grazing, he slows down now. I think it may be a while before he is fully over the incident.
Yes you need to be mindful, but a cow isn't going to sprint 50 yards to get in front of you. Or if he does at least you would be
able to see that coming.
|After the Extra Terrestrial Highway we are going to Caliente, but we are not sure we can make it on the
gas left in the S, so w turn right and go to Ash Springs. That makes it only 155 miles from the last gas stop. To get to Caliente it
would be 167 miles. The pumps at Ash Springs say we could have made Caliente no problem, but better safe than sorry.
After Caliente we turn East on Hwy 319, which becomes Hwy 56 at the Utah border.
From here it is just a straight run into Cedar City and our hotel for the night.
|An actual early start today, all twisties planned. Not to mention going through a national park.
So we hit Hwy 14 out of Cedar City, nice canyon road. Then it's up to Hwy 89 and heading North.
Ah Hwy 12. The whole reason for today.
|We pass the turn for Bryce Canyon. I know I want to hit a Park today, but I don't remember having to turn
off the road to do it. So we stop for a map check, nope. Bryce Canyon is an out and back route, not what I was thinking of.
So we keep moving. As we continue I feel that somehow I have made an error. We keep heading East and no National Park.
We stop for a shot above Boulder anyway.
|When we get to Boulder we stop for lunch and I get the map out again for a real look.|
Remember back in the beggining where I said we went over some general mapping? I do. Anyway the upshot of the whole thing is I laid out the route going on Memory and in actually looking at the map I obviously remembered WRONG. Heading out of Cedar City you don't head through a Park on the way to Hwy 12. You do that when you start in St George! I was thinking about heading through Zion National Park, then up Hwy 89 to Hwy 12. What a bone head. All the way out here, showing my son some great country and I missed a BIG one. So much for my memory. Guess we will have to hit that some other time. Hey, an excuse for a ride!!
Anyway Hwy 12 continues to provide some epic views. So we continue to ride and enjoy.
|At Torrey we are on to Hwy 24 and some more great views.|
| We hit Hanksville and stop for gas. I forgot the picture of the gas stop dug into the cliff. Oh well.|
Time constraints now bring us to the point of having to head for home. Hwy 24 takes us north to Interstate 70 (Blah) There are still some great views along Hwy 24, just not very interesting riding.
After I-70 it's East to Grand Junction and our last hotel stop of the trip.
Short ride to home today. No hurry getting started.
In fact we take the opportunity to go look at Colorado Mesa University. My son was invited to football camp here so the coaches can get a better look at him. Camp is the week after we get home.
Hwy, excuse me, Interstate 70 east is nothing to write about. It's an interstate.
But when we get close we take Hwy 6 toward Golden and catch the peak to peak Hwy. That's Hwy 6 to Hwy 119 to Hwy 72, then for us Hwy 7 all the way in to Estes Park. Then it is just down Hwy 34 to Loveland and home.
I didn't take any pictures today, the Peak to peak is a day ride for me. I've done it several times.
Anyway, all in all a great trip. According to the odometer of the one bike that made the whole trip we did 3281 miles. I think we doubled my son's total street miles, and we had a great time to boot.
Hope you all enjoyed coming along with us.
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