First Day of Summer 2008

06/21/2008

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This was our route for today. About 390 miles of some beautiful roads and as you'll see later, some very wild weather!

 

Got to Rippers right at 9am after getting breakfast at McDonald's. Got to see the Jesus Bike and actually got to sit on it. I think I'm saved...if I could only reach the peddles!

 

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The paint job on this bike is beautiful. It's a huge bike and the shift linkage says "Born Again". I wonder if Fonzi is going to keep that on it! Well, 2 days after this picture was taken, it was off to the shop to get a new paint job.

 

Took off right about 9:15. It was so hot already. There wasn't much traffic, but it was really hot, even at this early of an hour. Approaching Ione. This quarry is really neat to see.
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Crossing over New Melones Lake just before arriving in to Sonora. Had to stop and get gas and get something to drink. We passed a couple of temperature signs that read 97 degrees. We had to park way out in the parking lot to find shade.

 

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Ripper getting ready to head up the hill! Heading out on Hwy 108. It was a beautiful day and the farther we got up the mountain, the cooler it got. It was really starting to be a nice ride.

 

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Sierra Don said that Dardanelle burned down. We stopped just long enough to take this picture for proof that it was still there.

 

Big downgrade ahead. Looks like this truck on the sign is on The Liberator!
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Really nice, twisty, roads the whole way. Most cars were nice enough to pull over for us.

 

Beautiful shots with a little bit of snow still on the ground.

 

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Crossing Sonora Pass at 9,624 feet in elevation.

 

The clouds made for a really pretty sky.

 

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More nice scenery.

 

If you look close, you can see the hairpin curve ahead.

 

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Ripper riding on the wrong side of the road. Thought I was riding with Terry for a minute! Coming out of the mountains, there's this really long stretch and up on the left, the Marine training camp.

 

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After turning on to Hwy 395, managed to get this shot of Ripper. Walker River, and from what someone told me, is the only river in the state that runs North and South.

 

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Got to Walker Burger around 1:30 and ordered a Walker Burger, large onion rings, and a large diet soda. Took about 20 minutes for the food to get to us, but it was worth the wait.

 

Have to get the key to use the bathroom. Thought this was funny.
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Walker Burger, large onion rings, large diet Pepsi. The weather was perfect when we got there. Slight breeze and the temp wasn't too bad. It was actually a little cool. Just when we were finishing our burgers, the wind really kicked up and was followed by.....

 

...rain! So we just waited it out and after about 20 minutes, the rain looked like it had passed. So we took off for Hwy 89 and crossing Monitor Pass.
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Near the peak of Monitor Pass, got this pic of the valley behind me. Those dark clouds were getting awfully close. So far, we were lucky, but we kept riding toward the clouds. No rain yet. Even though it was cloudy, the temperature was just perfect.

 

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Well, our luck ran out. Hit rain. Not too bad at first, but it got a lot worse.

 

Really wet roads and hairpin turns make for an interesting ride.

 

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Stopped off at this place that has a weird parking lot. This lady on the left and her husband, just got brand new 1300 V-Stars. Well, the parking lot was slanted, and when she got on her bike, got it a little off-center and dropped it. Ripper helped out by taking it down to a more level spot in the parking lot.

 

The bottom of my pants were so wet, and I had a lot of water in my left boot! We were going to get something to snack on here, but they didn't have any power!
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Ripper's pants were wet too, but that's just because he's old! :) While passing through Murphy's, they had a Muster Drill meeting and a lot of people were watching muster drills. On the side of the road, I spotted this lady wearing a fireman's helmet. She had the biggest...um...eyes, and a really short skirt. She gave us the hitchhiker's thumb while I snapped this really blurry pic.

 

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Just down the road from the blond, I got a perfectly clear shot of this bunch of grapes! sigh

 

Shadow of me on Hwy 49.

 

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Coming in on Hwy 16, the sun was behind the clouds and made for a really cool view. By this time, it was so hot that my pants were finally dry and my boots weren't squishy anymore! My bike was sooooo filthy. I ended up washing it the next day with a bucket of water and soap. Took all the accessories off and got it good and clean. Wasn't as hard as I thought it would be to get all that road grime off. Might end up having to wash my bike like that more often. Ended up averaging 46 mpg for the whole trip. 390 miles, 46 mpg, all adds up to about $40 in gas for this trip. It's even getting expensive to take the bike out! But the ride was soooo worth it.