Well, after 8 days of riding in much cooler weather, we were welcomed back by 108 degrees on the freeway coming home Monday morning. But from what I saw, it was a good time to get away from the heat. Our loop on this trip took us 2776 miles to the coast of California and up Pacific Coast Highway to San Francisco, over to and around Lake Tahoe, Virginia City, Four Passes over the Sierra Nevada's and through Yosemite before dropping down to Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks. If you are looking for a trip to take this summer, I would highly encourage this area. As much as I liked Colorado and the scenery there, the Sierra Nevada's are a close second in terms of beauty and a great riding experience. Riding temperatures were in the 70's and 80's for most of the trip. Starting next week, I will outline the route complete with pictures and maps. I had a few pictures from the first couple of days last week. Here is a sampling of photos from all 8 days that will get you excited to see this part of the country for yourself. Click Here to View Photos. (9 new photos from last week)
While I am catching up on 330 unread emails and processing photos, I wanted to include an article that I had written a couple of years ago about my unexpected
experience with dehydration that is timely with the intense heat that we are having now. Once you have experienced
dehydration, you will make sure not to get yourself into that position again. It is really pretty scary especially
if you are trying to ride a motorcycle at the same time. What I did not realize is that you can become dehydrated
in as little as 15 minutes. The bottom line is to drink water even if you are not that thirst at the
moment, especially if you are about to hit the road. Here is my article from 5/31/06. I think you might find
it interesting and maybe even familiar.
One thing that we all have to pay attention to and be extremely careful about
this time of year is dehydration. Dehydration is a loss of water and
important blood salts like potassium and sodium which can be very serious, especially when riding a motorcycle.
It occurs when the amount of water in the body falls below normal, which, in turn, disrupts the balance of sugars
and salts (electrolytes) in the body. A lot of us, especially those that are new to the area, don't really
know that much about dehydration in general, and certainly not as it applies to riding. I didn't know that much
about it either until about 5 years ago when Mr. Dehydration introduced himself to me as I was riding
South down I-17 just North of Rock Springs. He made a believer out of me. It is one of those days that
I won't soon forget, and it taught me a big lesson about not getting into that situation again. I, like a lot of
other riders, had underestimated the impact of dehydration on my body.
I was coming back from Prescott in late June after a stop at Grand Canyon HD in Mayer. I was heading back to the Valley in the late afternoon heading into temperatures of about 107 degrees, which was of course much hotter on the Interstate. About 20 miles North of Rock Springs I started noticing that I had cotton mouth so bad that I couldn't have mustered up a spit for a $100 bill. A few miles later I noticed that my sweat glands were no longer producing any sweat. My arms and face were completely dry. Shortly after that I remember that I starting having blurred vision, almost like I was seeing stars followed by a dizzy feeling and weakness in my muscles, like I really wasn't in complete control. Not being an expert in dehydration, or for that matter ever experiencing it before, I didn't know clinically what was going on, but I had a pretty good idea that was what was happening.
My immediate problem was, I didn't have any water with me, and I was still about 15 miles from Rock Springs where I could get some. The closer I got to water the worse my symptoms were getting. More blurred vision, getting more unsteady and weaker by the mile. It was like when I started going downhill physically, it was a rapid decent and every mile I rode doing 75 mph in 107 degree temps with no windshield just seemed to be sapping every ounce of moisture out of my body. I was almost to the point that I couldn't even swallow and considered stopping and letting my riding buddy go get me some water. I wasn't sure that I was actually going to be able to make it. But I decided to focus while counting down each mile in hopes that I would soon get to water.
We finally made it to the gas station next to the Rock Springs Cafe. For me, that old place had never looked so good. It was truly an oasis in the desert. I promptly threw down the kick stand and headed to the cooler to make my claim on the biggest bottle of water I could find and downed it in two gulps. I followed that with a big bottle of Gatorade. It wasn't long until I was starting to regain some of my faculties while getting back to normal vision and able to think straight. Needless to say, this put a little scare in me and I learned my lesson without it turning ugly on me. Now when I am riding in the heat I pay attention to maintaining hydration in my body.
Now, what should you do to avoid what happened to me?
Here are some tips to keep yourself in good hydration all the time and while riding.
1. Keep the direct sun off of your skin. Wear a light colored long sleeve shirt over your arms and a helmet or a bandanna on your head. Exposing your skin to sun and wind is a double whammy that only increases fluid loss from your body. Wear generous sunscreen on exposed areas. Your brain is about 75 percent water, so anything you can do to keep your head covered is a good thing. A helmet can go a long way in preserving fluids in your body when it is extremely hot.
2. Pour water over your shirt. A good way to create a natural evap cooler for your body is to pour water over you arms, neck and the front of your shirt. While you are riding this provides a cooling sensation for your body.
3. Drink LOTS of water. You should be drinking at least 8 ounces of water every hour when riding and probably more. Sports drinks like Gatorade are also good as they replenish needed electrolytes as well as fluid. Caffeinated drinks such as tea, coffee, and soda pop, as well as alcoholic drinks, should not be considered as alternatives for hydration. In fact, caffeine and alcohol can actually contribute to dehydration.
4. Drink water BEFORE you are thirsty. Once you have gotten to the point that your mouth is bone dry, you are on your way to dehydration.
5. Take in more fluid than you are losing. If you are not making a trip to bathroom regularly, or your urine is a dark color, this means you are not getting enough liquids in your body. This is something to pay attention to daily, not just when riding.
6. A good idea for keeping you hydrated while you are riding is a CamelBak Hydration System. This is a 70 ounce pack that fits on your back with a tube that comes around for you to drink water while you are riding. Click Here to view. Click Here for some more ideas.
7. Symptoms of dehydration: Thirst, Dry Mouth, Dry Tongue, Fatigue, Dark Colored Urine, Infrequent Urination, Dry Skin, Rapid Pulse, Dizziness, Blurred Vision. Here is a good link for Preventing Dehydration.
8. Covering Your Head is a good way to prolong your ride in the heat. Mrs. C. and I have found that wearing a good helmet is a great way to combat dehydration. Even if you don't normally wear a helmet, if you are taking a long trip in the heat, it is a good idea to do. You would think it would be hotter, but it has the opposite affect in keeping you cooler. A lot of the water leaves your body through your head. If it is covered, it will greatly prolong the amount of miles that you can ride without water intake.
With the humidity being as low as 4% on a daily basis right now. Dehydration can come upon you very quickly. In fact, you can become dehydrated in as little as 15 minutes. Stay ahead of it by drinking plenty of water or sports drinks. As you are taking trips in or out of the Valley area, be sure and take water with you when you travel and make a note to drink some at every stop.
I now carry a water bottle with me at all times, and even lay it on my lap to take
drinks every 10 minutes or so if I am going to be riding in extreme temperatures for very long.
Other useful links:
Highlights This Week
Wednesday, June 25th
Bike Night at the Sandbar sponsored by Arrowhead Harley-Davidson.
The last Wednesday of every month the Sandbar Mexican Grill is hosting a bike night
at their Peoria location at the Loop 101 and Northern.
New This Week!
Chester's Harley-Davidson Bike Night at Dos Gringos Mesa.
Ride by the New Dos Gringos Mesa located on the northwest corner of Greenfield and Baseline in Mesa.
Enormous patio, complete with its own outdoor bar and separate dining areas on each side.
Saturday, June 28th
Arrowhead Harley-Davidson Monthly Free Breakfast. Last month was a huge success.
Arrowhead Harley-Davidson wants to invite all it's great customers to a customer appreciation breakfast on
Saturday June 28th from 8:30am till 10:30 am!.
Saturday, June 28th
Buddy Stubbs Tattoos and Bikinis. Everyone is invited for Free Food, Live Music
by 3 of a Kind, Fun, Pool Tournament for prizes, a 50/50 raffle, Museum Tours
This Week's Bike Night Events
Kalahari Grill Wednesday Bike Night. What a cool place! For all of you on the West Side that would like a nice ride off the beaten path of the City, you need to check out the Kalahari Grill on Wednesday nights. Located in Vistancia just 5 miles West of Happy Valley Rd. and Lake Pleasant Rd. in Peoria. This is a very nice restaurant with a great indoor horseshoe bar and outdoor pass through bar that leads to a huge patio where you can relax while watching the sun set overlooking the desert . Kalahari Grill has an excellent menu and seriously good food and service. Enjoy Live Music on the patio every Wednesday for Bike Night from 7pm. Bike Night Specials include: $2.00 Off All Appetizers, Prime Rib Dinner $13.00, Domestic Drafts $2.50, Imported Drafts $3.50. Mrs. C. recommends the Ahi Tuna Tartar Appetizer. For more information call: 623-594-5947. Kalahari Grill is located at 28615 N. El Mirage Rd. in Peoria, AZ. Click Here for Photos Map and Menu. Kalahari Grill would also make the perfect Poker Stop for your next run.
Chester's Harley-Davidson Bike Night at Dos Gringos Mesa. Ride by the New Dos Gringos Mesa located on the northwest corner of Greenfield and Baseline in Mesa. Dos is sure to make an impact and add some flare to the east valley. Enormous patio, complete with its own outdoor bar and separate dining areas on each side. Dos is a casual neighborhood hangout with great food and cold cervezas. Feel free to dine at one of our four tops, relax at one of the booths lining the edge or just belly up to the bar. Click Here to View. There will be drink and food specials and Raffles and Fun from Chester's Harley-Davidson. Ride with Chester's from the dealership at 5:30pm every Thursday located at 922 S. Country Club Dr. in Mesa. 480-894-0404.
Thursday Bike Night. LIVE MUSIC with Dok & Gal every other Thursday. June
5th and June 19th this month. But you can still take a beautiful ride out to Estrella Mountain to E's Grill every
Thursday night for food and drink. Enjoy their huge outdoor patio and
entertainment area complete with stage and 3 large screen TV's. Equipped with one of the best mist systems you
will find. Band plays outside. Enjoy E's Great Food and drink. Bike night specials include 1/2 off Appetizers
and Happy Hour All Night Long. If you haven't been to E's, it is worth your ride out on Bike Night to enjoy Live
Music, Great Food and a Good Time every other Thursday with Dok & Gal. And don't forget the Weekend Brunch
to get your ride started. E's is located 8 miles South of 1-10 on Estrella Mountain Parkway. Turn right at
the first stop sign in Estrella to 17750 West Elliot Road in Goodyear. You will have to take Dysart or Cotton
Ln. South of 1-10 right now as Estrella Exit is closed.
Vito & Nick's II Thursday Bike Night. A NEW Bike Night for the SOUTHEAST VALLEY.
Vito & Nick's II is putting their great outdoor patio to good use on Thursday nights with an all new bike night. This is a brand new location that
features an outdoor patio, a comfortable dining area and bar. Bike night specials include $1.00 Off All Beer, $2.00
Off All Appetizers, $2.00 Off All Shots, $2.00 Off All Large Pizzas, Raffle Prizes. Get your raffle ticket when
you ride in. Plenty of outside seating and dining inside. Stop by this Thursday for some Great Food and Fun! Vito
& Nick's is located at 3321 E. Queen Creek Rd. (SE Corner of Queen Creek and Higley Rd.) 480-279-4482. Click
Here to see Vito & Nicks.
Hooter's Thursday Bike at Peoria location. The parking lot will be blocked off and it will be a night for MOTORCYCLES. Ride by Hooters in Peoria every Thursday night for Prizes, Giveaways every 1/2 Hour, Specials and of course great service by the Hooter's Girls. Enjoy $2.00 Bud and Bud Light Pints and $5.00 Bombers as well as those tasty Hooter's Wings. Sit on the huge outdoor patio and watch your favorite sporting event or inside with TV's every where you look. Enjoy this perfect riding weather with a ride to Hooter's this Thursday. Plan to check out the first night. 16550 N. 83rd Ave. just South of Bell Rd. 623-776-0123.
Fuzzy's Southwest Sports Grill Bike Night. Riders on the far west side in the Surprise area finally have a Bike Night. The brand new Fuzzy's Southwest will be hosting a bike night on Thursday Nights. Fuzzy's features an outdoor patio, 17 HD TV's, Pool Table, Large Horseshoe Bar and all glass front to see the bikes roll in. Enjoy Great Food, Pool, and Your Favorite Sporting Events all on new Flat Screens every Thursday Night at The Newest Bike Night In the Far West Valley. Bike Night Specials Include: 2.25 Corona's, Corona Light, Dos XX, Dos XX Amber, Pacifico, Tecate. $3.00 Jalapeno Poppers. $4.00 Super Spuds. $5.00 Chicken Tenders. $6.00 Baby Burgers. From 6-9pm. Fuzzy's is located 18795 N. Reems Rd. in Surprise at the corner of Reems and Grand Ave.
The Bike Night At The Billet Bar. Voted "BEST BIKER BAR IN PHOENIX" by New Times. There is no better place to watch all the Bikes ride down Scottsdale road than from The Billet Bar Patio. The Billet is ALWAYS packed with bikes Every Day. Stop by and take a look at the New Flamed Booths on the Paradise Patio. The new bars front and rear provide spacious seating, fresh air atmosphere, perfect temperature and courteous staff. The food is amazing and always the latest in cold libations await. You can sit at the back bar and watch your favorite TV on any of the seven big inch televisions. Play pool, listen to the latest music and socialize. The front patio seats over 75 people and is perfect for people watching on Scottsdale Rd. The Billet Bar is located on 3752 N. Scottsdale Rd. Check it out this Thursday night and all weekend long. Info: at 480-941-1876. Click Here for the New Billet Bar Page with pictures.
Salty Senorita Sunday Biker Brunch. Sunday from 10:00am - 3pm. Stop for a great brunch, some giveaways and the Salty's VIP Card good for 15% off of your food. This is a great location for brunch on the West side, you will not believe how cool this place is. Mrs. C. and I had it last Sunday and it was excellent while dining on their 3000 sq. foot outdoor patio with great music and an excellent sound system that backs up to the baseball field at Peoria Sports Complex. Salty's Sunday Brunch features a "Build-Your-Own Omelet for just $7.99, possibly the best omelet you will ever have, or you can order off of Salty's Super Brunch menu. Salty's also has a Create-Your-Own Bloody Mary. Plan to make the first one on Sunday, April 13th. Salty's in Peoria is located at 8011 W. Paradise Lane just one block South of Bell Rd. and one block East of 83rd Ave. See you this Sunday. See Photos of "Who Was There" previous Sundays.
Wednesday, June 25th
Bike Night at the Sandbar sponsored by Arrowhead Harley-Davidson. The last Wednesday of every month the Sandbar Mexican Grill is hosting a bike night at their Peoria location at the Loop 101 and Northern. Just take the Northern exit from the 101 and go West to the first light, you won't be able to miss it. This bike night is intended to grow every month with more Vendors, Events and Activities. If you haven't been to the Sandbar, you will see that it is the perfect venue for bike night with large indoor dining and a HUGE outdoor patio and bar, plenty of motorcycle only parking and places for vendors. This week there will be Food and Drink Specials, Live Music, Rock Star competition, the Ridenow Girls, Lots of Giveaways and Raffles, Motorcycle Displays from both Arrowhead HD and Ridenow with all kinds of bikes and off road displays. Ride by the Sandbar this Wednesday from 6-10 pm to kick off this monthly event. Sandbar is located at 9868 W. Northern in Peoria.
Saturday, June 28th
Arrowhead Harley-Davidson Monthly Free Breakfast. Last month was a huge success. There was a line of riders all morning for breakfast. Arrowhead Harley-Davidson wants to invite all it's great customers to a customer appreciation breakfast on Saturday June 28th from 8:30am till 10:30 am!. Join us for a FREE pancake, sausage and egg breakfast. Thank you for all your support and business! Ride by Arrowhead Harley-Davidson the last Saturday of Every Month for a free breakfast. Arrowhead Harley-Davidson is located at 16130 N. Arrowhead Fountain Center Dr. in Peoria. 623-247-5542.
Saturday, June 28th
Buddy Stubbs Tattoos and Bikinis. Everyone is invited for Free Food, Live Music by 3 of a Kind, Fun, Pool Tournament for prizes, a 50/50 raffle, Museum Tours with Buddy and a chance to hang out with other bikers and check out what's new at the store. Want a Tattoo? Tattoo artists will be on site. Tattoo contests for Prize $$$. All from 11am - 3pm. And don't forget the Bikini Bikewash from 11am - 2pm. Ride by Buddy Stubbs and enjoy the festivities at 13850 N. Cave Creek Rd. in Phoenix, AZ. 602-971-3400.
You might have seen some of these helicopter mishaps before, but I think there is a new one or two in here. Click Here to View.
This might be one of the best catches in baseball, but it was by the ball girl on the side of the field. Watch the slow mo of this catch. Click Here to View.
Chris Angel is at it again. Watch as he walks through a window. But did I mention the window is not open. This guy is freaky. Click Here to View.