Saturday, January 31, 2009

Cody WY to Summit County CO Jume 23

We departed Cody at 8:AM and passed through Meeteetse, a nice simple western type town and on to Thermopolis, the Wind River Canyon, a pleasant surprise, Riverton, Lander, Jeffrey City (never noticed it ) and Muddy Gap ( the name is intriguing) to Rawlins, a dumpy railroad town, to Route #130 which proved quite scenic and we observed a tremendous number of antelope along the way. We stopped at the Mangy Moose in Riverside for lunch which was quite good. We pushed on through Walden, Kremmling and Green River and got soaked in a rain storm, a fitting finale to a weather plagued trip. We arrived in Summit County at 7:45 PM. Trip over. All in all we made the best of it and had a good time.

Next trip is to San Carlos MX and the Copper Canyon May-June 2010.

West Cody WY to East Cody WY June 22

Well we don't make it out of Cody. Tom's bike breaks and on the recommendation of the local bike shop, their mechanic was not on duty, we take it to be fixed at the home of a gentleman who lives nearby and spend the day at the Buffalo Bill Museum which proved to be most interesting. Late afternoon the bike is fixed and we check in to the Cody Motel (very nice) in preparation for a morning departure.

Gardiner MT to Yellowstone N.P. to Cody WY June 21

Entered the park about 9:30 AM and spent most of the day touring. Yellowstone is spectacular, there is much to see and do. I have been here twice and there is still more to see.If you haven't been there yet then by all means make plans to do so. Don't miss it. We left the park via Route 14, a beautiful and scenic road and arrived in Cody approximately 6:00PM and checked in to the Super 8. I do not recommend staying here. We had issues with the hot water (none) and the staff (very rude) refused to address them and did not offer another room saying they were sold out. We dined at Maxwell's, friendly service, terrible food. Cody is not off to a good start with us

Butte MT to Gardiner MT June 20

Ed's bike has been repaired (stator)so we are up and running. Thunderbolt Harley Davidson in Butte deserves plaudits for their cordial, prompt, reasonable and quality service. Our delay was minimal due to these friendly folks. Well I-90 is the only game in town ( I detest Interstates) as far as getting to our destination which is now Gardiner MT the north gateway to Yellowstone. The ride on I-90 was unremarkable but the ride on Hwy 89 south made up for it. The scenery was most impressive and Gardiner proved to be a neat and friendly town. We checked in to the Yellowstone River Motel (clean, reasonable)walked over and had a few drinks at the Devil's Slide tavern (nice) and then over to the Two Bit Saloon (also nice)and had grilled buffalo steak (excellent) delivered from Raven's an outdoor grill adjacent to the saloon. Tomorrow we tour Yellowstone.

Coeur d'Alene ID to Butte MT June 19

Plans have changed. Logan Pass is closed due to snow. Scratch Glacier NP. We will head for Yellowstone NP which is now completely open. We proceeded east on I-90 (I detest riding Interstates and try to avoid them) with the intent of making it to Gardiner MT, the north entrance to Yellowstone NP but plans changed again when Ed's bike broke down necessitating a 'tow' to the Harley Davidson dealer in Butte. The bike will be repaired tomorrow. Butte itself is a dump.While exploring for a restaurant we found that 'downtown' was shabby and uninviting so we came back towards our hotel and had dinner at the Derby Casino which was just 'OK'. The Comfort Inn however was very good with a courteous and helpful staff.

Sorry Butte but ya gotta clean up your act.

Burlington WA to Coeur d'Alene ID June 18

Departed Burlington early A.M. on WA 20 east, a beautiful and scenic ride which took us through North Cascades N.P. This portion of our trip however turned out to be the coldest with temps in the mid to high thirties. BRRR! Coming out of/down from the Cascades we stopped in Winthrop, a town with an old western motif for coffee and pastry at the Rocking Horse Bakery. Excellent don't miss it the pastries and muffins are all baked fresh. Nothing like a hot coffee and a hot muffin after a cold ride. We pushed on through Twisp, a neat orderly town, and took WA 163 south to US 97 at Pateros and north on 97 to Brewster to WA 173 which morphs in to WA 174 at the Chief Joseph Dam near Bridgeport and stopped to see the Grand Coulee Dam an awesome and remarkable feat of engineering. After visiting the dam we rode WA 174 to US 2 at Wilbur and east to Spokane where we picked up I-90(yuk)east to Coeur d'Alene and checked in to the Silver Lake Inn which proved to be clean and reasonable with restaurants within walking distance. We will check the WX tonight for tomorrow's conditions up in Glacier NP. Hopefully they will be favorable.

Port Angeles WA to Burlington WA June 17

Plans have changed. Canada is too cold and there is snow, like we need more of it, in Jasper. We visited Hurricane Ridge, beautiful with heavy fog in parts. One feels quite vulnerable on a motorcycle in heavy fog. Now if we can encounter a heat wave we will have run the gamut of weather conditions.We took the ferry (a bargain at $4.85) from Port Townsend to Whidbey Island and stopped in Burlington for the night at the Cocina motel (reasonable and very nice). Dinner was at the Brewery (good) adjacent to the motel.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Forks WA to Port Angeles WA June16

In the morning we headed south to the Hoh Rainforest which we found quite interesting and well worth the detour. After a couple of hours touring the rainforest we headed north back through Forks to Neah Bay to the Cape Loop road and to Cape Flattery where we hiked the last 3/4 mile to the overlook. The views of the water caves and Tatoosh Island are not to be missed. Next stop Port Angeles checked in to the Portside Inn (nice, reasonable) and had dinner at Bushwhackers a steak house within walking distance, which proved to be excellent. Tomorrow is decision day.Do we head north to Victoria,Whistler, Jasper and Banff?? The WX has been predominately atrocious with unseasonable(so we've been told by the locals since we left CO) cold temps so we will have to check the A.M. forecast.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Astoria OR to Forks WA June 15

After crossing the Columbia River we entered Washington at Chinook. The scenery on this portion of US 101 is unremarkable with only short glimpses of the shoreline. Stopped in South Bend, a quaint fishing village and had coffee and muffins (terrific!!!) at the local bakery which I cannot remember the name of. We took the WA 105 loop through Grayland and were not impressed. Back on US 101 we rode up to Forks with plans to visit the Hoh Rainforest in the morning. Checked in to the Pacific Inn Motel (nice,clean, reasonable)and had dinner at the Inn Place which was on the premises.
Let me preface my next comment by stating that it is my nature to tell it like it is. I wish to pass on my experiences to other riders in the hope that it will be of help to them should they plan a ride through the areas I have visited. This trip was not all "peaches and cream" and any not so good(in my experience) venues, lodging, restaurants etc. will be reported here as I experienced it.That being said, we dined at the Inn Place and found the server very nice and the food very bad. Small portions, big prices, unimaginative cooking(translate that=no taste). It stunk! Big time.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Coos Bay OR to Astoria OR

Cold WX today. What else is new. The ride from Coos Bay on US 101 was unremarkable until Florence and the scenery became spectacular once again especially so at Heceta Head where the must have been 50 sea lions sunning themselves.
On to Astoria where we checked in to the Holiday Inn on the waterfront of the Columbia River (very nice). We had drinks at the Triangle Tavern a friendly place patronized by loggers and fishermen. For dinner we went to the Mary Todd Workers Bar a raucous but friendly place with good food.

Arcata CA to Coos Bay OR June13

Departed Arcata and headed down to Eureka, checked out the seaport and rode around town. Both Eureka an Arcata are very nice,neat towns but what was a glaring fact was the amount of indigent/homeless people and for lack of a better description they looked like the hippies of the 60's. Headed north through Redwoods NP/SP, nice but although larger they don't seem to have the 'character' of the Sequoias. The vegetation was quite interesting though. North through Crescent City and the Oregon coast. California's northern coast while pretty pales in comparison to Oregon's. Gold Beach and Pistol Creek are must sees. Bandon OR (nice) deserves to be mentioned. Stopped in Coos Bay for the night, checked in to the Red Lion (very,very nice)and had dinner and drinks at Buffalo Bill's Steakhouse (highly recommended).

Klamath Falls OR to Arcata CA June 12

Left Klamath Falls at 8:30 A.M.and headed west on OR 66, a great scenic route, through Keno (neat place!)and Pinehurst to I-5 at Ashland and south to CA 96 which followed the Klamath River. CA 96 is a beautiful and twisty road with many scenic pull offs. The WX turned out a lot better than it has been (warm!),an excellent riding day. Stopped for lunch at the Frontier Cafe (excellent and reasonable) in Happy Camp (I like that name) After lunch we continued south on CA 96 to CA 299 to Arcata. It seemed to us that the drivers primarily on CA 299 were aggressive and rude.The road itself however was quite nice and scenic. The Super 8 Arcata was reasonable and clean, I recommend it.

Christmas Valley OR to Klamath Falls OR

The ride from Christmas Valley to Route 97 is notable because of the great scenery. The town of Silver Lake was 'interesting'.

We had to enter Crater Lake NP from the south because the north entrance was closed due to snow. The views of this lake are absolutely breathtaking. We spent the night in Klamath Falls at the Super 8(clean and reasonable). Dinner was at Molly's across the street (truck stop fare but tasty).WX for the day was sunny but cool...brrrr!

Boise ID to Christmas Valley OR June 10

Left Boise 9:30 AM, WX? Hate to say it but it didn't start out bad in Boise but it didn't take long to become brutally cold as we progressed west. Hope the rumblings of mutiny don't surface. The ride between Vale OR (home of the Bates Motel) and Juntura OR where we stopped at a very nice and quaint restaurant, the Oasis (excellent food/service), was largely unremarkable except for some nice views of the Malheur River. We gassed up in Burns OR, a nondescript locale where the folks did not seem too friendly, and proceeded through Riley OR and south on Rte. 395 to Wagontire OR, a fairly recent or so it seemed, ghost town. Neat but spooky place. Took a few pics there and eased on through the eastern Oregon 'flatland' to Christmas Valley OR. Ever heard of it? Me neither! Small but friendly place. Checked in to the Desert Inn Motel(old but clean) and walked over to the Christmas Valley Inn for cocktails and dinner (food was very good). Stepped out in to the bar after dinner and mingled with the 'locals' and had a great time. Nice, friendly folks.