I hope you all took advantage of the relatively nice weather last weekend to go on the Cyclerides.com Monument Ride that I wrote about in Last Week's Newsletter. If you are looking for a good overnighter, there is still plenty of time to do the Silver City Ride that I wrote about a couple of months ago. The Coronado Trail will be awesome this time of year. Take a look at the New Page that I just did for this ride complete with maps. Click Here.
As most of you know, especially those who followed my daily pictorial on the Cyclerides.com
Facebook page, Mrs. C. and I took off on July 30th for a 10
day ride through the Great White North. It was an excellent 3300 mile ride in which we were blessed with great
riding weather for 95% of the trip. And for that other 5%, a little rain never hurt anyone, it's part of a
day on the road. As with all of the long rides that we have taken, this one was filled with exceptional scenery,
much sought after cooler riding weather and new relationships made with other riders along the way.
As I sit here trying to write this, I'm finding it difficult to transfer the reflections of my thoughts over these 10 days, into a few paragraphs in the newsletter. Imagine the experience and daily routine of living out of a T-Bag with a few clothes rolled up with a rubber band, strapped to the back of a motorcycle, pointed in a direction not knowing where it will take you, with no schedule, no motel reservations and no ending requirement for the day. This concept is so liberating, relaxing and contrary to the life we live every day, it's really hard to put into words. For most of us, we get up at the same time every day, take the same route to work, get off at the same time and reverse the route. It is Eat, Work, Sleep, Repeat. We generally live by schedules, demands and expectations dictated by our work and family life.
There is not much better than to be on a motorcycle, riding through a place you have never been, with the cool breeze blowing past your body while your nose picks up the scent of the fresh cut alfalfa, the strawberry fields or the strong smell of fresh cut logs from that sawmill as you ride by. Being enveloped by the enormity of the mountains with glaciers hanging off of the edge, while enjoying the beauty of God's creation 360 degrees around you, living only by YOUR schedule and expectations, is about as far from the real world as you can possibly get.
Riding a motorcycle on trips like this is such and incredible experience, so refreshing to your soul, but yet so hard to explain to anyone that has not experienced it for themselves. I know there are a lot of you reading this that know what I mean. But for those of you that have not yet ventured into the carefree, leave the schedule behind type of motorcycle ride, I would highly encourage it for a way to break the mold of the daily routine and provide a boost to your mental well being. It is also a great opportunity to spend some quality time with your spouse or significant other. I can honestly say that I did not turn the TV on even one time the entire 10 days. And didn't miss it.
Some have asked how we do a trip like this. Since I am self employed and distribute my Hat Saver product nationwide, to Japan and via internet sales, it is hard to be gone for much more than a week at a time. And to maximize those days, we generally leave on a Thursday or Friday and return the next Sunday, giving us a full 10 days, but only 6 work days. Since we have limited time, to maximize our riding time in the area that we want to be, we ship the bike to the destination that we want to start from. In this case we shipped the bike to Seattle, over 1400 miles away. We used http://motorcycleshipping.biz . Call Mary Lou for a quote at 800-615-3011. Cost was $565. We then got one way tickets to Seattle and took a cab the 7 miles to Allied warehouse where the bike was waiting. The battery was dead when it got there, but they had a battery cart to jump it and we were on our way by 11am. This is a very slick way to maximize time and start riding right where you want to be.
Since almost half the day was already gone, we wanted to at least get the 210 miles over the North Cascades National Park to Winthrop done and preferably another 100 or so if possible. It is really pretty exciting when you finally get on the bike, let out the clutch and realize that the next 10 days and 3300 miles are yours to do with as you please. We headed North up I-5 through Seattle to Scenic Hwy. 530 to Arlington where we stopped for lunch. Unfortunately, one of the first things we saw was a sign that said that Hwy. 20 was closed at Ross Trail due to an avalanche. Hmmm, not good considering that there is only one way across the Cascades to Winthrop and that is on Hwy. 20. So over lunch I called the Park and they told me that the road should be open by 4pm. It was about 12:30pm when I made the call and we were only about 80 miles away. This meant 2 things, we were almost certain we would be staying in Winthrop and we would have time for some quality sight seeing along the way.
So we took our time along Hwy. 530 following it up to Rockport where we intersected with Hwy. 20. The next 100 miles is possibly some of the finest riding that you will ever do. The North Cascades is an absolutely beautiful area with gorgeous mountains and Diablo Lake with the torquoise blue snow fed water. The road meanders and curves throughout the park, taking you past the Skagit river hydroelectric plant, dams and presenting you with one great view after as you rise up to the pass. Your decent on the North Cascades Scenic Hwy. will take you through Rainy Pass that will present you with an awesome mountainscape with a view of the road switchbacking down below. Certainly a sight that you will remember.
We did this route about 4 years ago and specifically wanted to do it again. The pictures from this trip really don't do it justice because it was a little overcast this day, but it is an excellent ride, certainly in the top 4 or 5 routes that I have ever done. (See the link for the excellent photos from 4 years ago below) The frosting on the cake will be your stop in Winthrop. We wanted to make it further than this, but we are glad that circumstances kept us here. This is one of the neatest old towns that you will find. They have done a great job in preserving the authenticity of this old settlement. I would highly recommend the Hotel Rio Vista located within walking distance to the town. The Old Schoolhouse Brewery is a fun place to eat and usually has live entertainment on the patio. Winthrop will be another memorable part of your day.
I mentioned earlier about the camaraderie of others who are on motorcycle trips as well. We casually met a couple from Canada at the overlook of Diablo Lake and exchanged a few pleasantries. We later sow them at another overlook and waved to them again. We then ended up in the same town of Winthrop at the Old Schoolhouse and ended up talking with them and sharing routes and stories for 20 minutes as we waited for our dinner. It is just cool that you have a friend no matter where you are as long as there are other riders around.
So if you are looking to maximize your time in the area that you want to ride, shipping your bike to the start point and riding it home is a great way to go. You still get the amount of miles you want to ride, you just don't have to go through 1400 miles that you don't want to ride to get there, and save 3 days. Seattle is a great place to start as you can do routes into Canada, Victoria, or head down the coast of Washington, Oregon and California. A lot of possibilities from this start location. Next week I will be back with our cross into Canada. Enjoy the 133 Photos.
Click Here for 133 Photos From this ride.
Photos from 4 years ago on a blue sky day that shows the beauty even better. Click Here.
Click Here for Map of Day 1
North Cascades National Park
North Cascades National Park Information
Winthrop, Washington Information
Winthrop, Washington on Wikipedia
Bike Nights This Week
The Bike Night At The Billet Bar. The Billet Bar is the place to be for the Summer nights and weekends. Set on the patio and watch the action. 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.
Friday - Sunday
August 21st - 24th
RideNow Powersports Unauthorized Warehouse Clearance Sale. Don't Miss This One!!
If you are looking for some new toys to play with this Fall, now is your chance to get them at a deep discount. RideNow Powersports is clearing out the warehouse and offering Motorcycles, ATV's, PWC and Sport Boats on site at WHOLESALE Pricing from the Biggest Manufacturers. Save up to 70% off of Parts and Accessories. If you are in the market for anything powersports, Don't Miss This HUGE Sale! Ridenow Warehouse is located at 6655 S. Kyrene Rd. in Tempe, AZ. Sale is from 9am - 6pm Fri - Sun. August 21-24.
Saturday, August 29th
Buddy Stubbs Texas Hold 'Em. Test your poker skills in the Buddy Stubbs Texas Hold 'Em Tournament. Starts at 12 PM in the air conditioned Buddy Stubbs Dealership. $20 Buy in. Top 5 finishers share $1000 in cash and prizes. Sign-Up in person now at Buddy Stubbs HD or call 602-971-3400. Only 50 player spots. Even if you are the next Hold 'Em champion, stop by from 11am - 3pm for FREE Food and Drinks, pool Tournament and Museum Tours with Buddy. Buddy Stubbs HD is located at 13850 N. Cave Creek Rd. in Phoenix, AZ. www.buddystubbshd.com .
Saturday, August 29th
Arrowhead Harley-Davidson Presents the Hottest Hostess & Beautiful Bartender Bikini Contest.
Ride by and voice your opinion from the crowd as 15 Hostess's and Bartender's from Hooters, McDuffy's, Fox and Hound, Salty Senorita's and the Native New Yorker do what it takes to be noticed in the 2nd Arrowhead HD Bikini Contest. Click Here to see last year's bikini contest video. The contest will kick off at 11am. Winners will be announced at 1pm. Special Guest Judges, Music, Food, Vendors, Bike Wash from 1-am - 3pm. Looking to ad some new accessories to your bike or pick up some new gear? Tier discounts on this day. Spend $1-$200, Save 10%. $201-$500, Save 15%. $500 and up Save 20%. While you are there, check out the New 2010 HD Motorcycles. Arrowhead HD is located at 16130 N. Arrowhead Ftn. Dr. in Peoria, AZ. 623-247-5542.
Don't forget, the Rocky Point Rally is ON! November 5-8. If you plan on going you will need to get your passport card ordered soon. If you missed the newsletter a couple of weeks ago with the announcement of the Rocky Point Rally being UN-Cancelled, Click Here to Read and have instruction on how to get your passport card. The Rally is on an being planned with some very cool additions this year. More will be announced in the coming weeks. Get your passport cards and reservations now. www.rockypointrally.com .
Cyclerides.com is now on Facebook! I am
inviting you to "Become A Fan" on the Cyclerides.com Facebook
Go to http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cycleridescom/108447575697 to add your name and bookmark this page. If you are not on Facebook, you can still go to the page, but you will not be able to communicate. There will be a link there for you to sign up for Facebook if you are inclined.
You can never get enough of the Dog Blooper videos. This is very entertaining. Click Here to View.
Here is a good lesson on "How not to take off in a seaplane". Or even film the takeoff of a seaplane. Click Here to View
Video of the Week
This video is really funny and made me laugh out loud. Titled "Why middle aged Women shouldn't drink. Click Here to View. Click on the Video of the Week graphic on the page.