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1Back to top Go down    Wednesday's Ride - Olympic National Park on Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:36 am

Two Wheels Better

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Olympic National Park, Hoh Rainforest, La Push, & Forks Washington

The weather is gunna be fine and I am taking the day off. Stuff 'em!
Cool

K1200GT or R1150RT? Hmmm...



Last edited by Two Wheels Better on Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:09 pm; edited 1 time in total


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1987 K100RS, '93 Framed K11/K12 engine 'Big Block', '09 K1300GT, '07 K1200R, '04 R1150RT, '95 R100 Mystic, '77 R75/7.
Sniff...can you smell that? I think it might be bullsh*t.

    

Two Wheels Better

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...GT it is. The sun is up and shining through a light, humid haze. It'll be high 20s today in the city and about 15 on the coast and in the mountain rainforest. Tank full. Tea downed. Belly full. Shockie adjusted. Panniers not full. 7AM departure time. Now I shove off.
Very Happy


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1987 K100RS, '93 Framed K11/K12 engine 'Big Block', '09 K1300GT, '07 K1200R, '04 R1150RT, '95 R100 Mystic, '77 R75/7.
Sniff...can you smell that? I think it might be bullsh*t.

    

Two Wheels Better

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Steven Tyler belted out "I'm baaa-ck, I'm baaa-ck in the saddle agaaa-in..." inside my helmet as I rolled down I-5 toward Olympia, the state capitol, amongst zigzagging sleepwalking distracted commuter traffic. I was headed toward the 101, Montesano and then Aberdeen, home of Kurt Cobain of Nirvana. The welcome sign at the city limit of Aberdeen simply says 'Come As You Are', and is a not-so subtle nod to the hometown boy who rocked the world then took his own life like so many other 27 year old shooting stars. Brian, Janice, Jimi, Jim, Amy, Justin Beiber, oh, wait, not quite yet! Didn't Kurt swear 'I don't have a gun'?
Wink

It's a bleak place, Aberdeen - the American one, made even bleaker when the Autumn rains set in until late-Spring, and sometimes right on through Summer. Gray's Harbour, the region's called, a fitting name for a relatively forgotten backwater of a place. I didn't stop. I never stop there.

On 101 again, through Hoquiam, then north toward Quinalt, La Push and the Hoh rainforest along the pine-studded coastline of Washington state, the road is a two-lane state highway, smooth and banked, with plenty of fast-moving log trucks making the rounds back and forth along the heavily forested coastal range. It's a veritable smorgasbord of monoculture pine forest for companies like Weyerhaeuser & Rayonier, and many others. Gubmint land, taxpayer supported, Bureau of Land management contracts. Clearcut awards handed out like a free haircut on a bad hair day. The picturesque low range hills are devastated.

I watched one log truck overtake another right in front of me at 80+ miles per hour on a curve. Neither of the drivers touched their brakes. That's some kind of trust. Placing the GT in cruise, I slowed down a coupla hundred metres behind them since 70 mph seemed reasonably quick on those roads; this is the home to massive bull elk and playful deer, not to mention the occasional wandering raccoon.

Moss hung heavy from low slung pines, the air thick with the peaty scent of a millenium or two of organic rot, pine needles, skunk cabbage, ferns and salty-sweet, sea air. The sky had remained cloudy until I hit the coast. Now breaks of blue beckoned me northward. Traffic was light, this being a mid-week day and it was early still. I was one hundred miles into my 400 mile ride. It had taken me an hour and a half to reach the coast.



At Kaloloch Lodge I pulled in and rode amongst the cabins right to the edge of the beach. The water was as grey as the sky and the sand. Driftwood lay in piles against the scrub trees at the beach's edge.



It's no bucolic, white sand Aussie beach, but beautiful and stark in its own right. The grey whales are heading north about now. I spotted not one through the salty haze.

There's a sign that sign 'Largest Cedar Tree'. I had to look. It should have said 'Largest Cedar Tree on the Ground'. It was massive. Once.



A couple in khaki and comfortable walking shoes scrambled over the carcass. I snapped this quickie and departed.

A cute, petite blonde with a Pittsburgh accent, coffee mug in hand, and some fancy-arse sunnies, hair unkempt and tossled like she'd just rolled outta bed, walked up to me and took my picture from behind (w/o my permission, damn it!) and proceeded to tell me about her travelling partner,& etc...

'He's 72 and doesn't like hiking, I like to hike, we travel a lot and I have to book casinos and cruises, places where he can eat and drink, I'm 45 but people tell me I don't look it, I've gained a few pounds, I've never been to Alaska, have you?, I hear an accent, I've never married or had kids, I've done alright for myself but I need to keep moving, I rented a BMW in Vegas last month, it was fast, but I couldn't help thinking about the cost of maintenance, I like bikes too, I went to the class to get my endorsement, but they scare me and I'm scatter-brained, someone would run over me, you should be careful, I don't think anyone pays attention to motorcycles on the road, we rented a Jetta and are going to the Orcas Islands then Canada, What part of Australia?, I should go there, do they play golf there?, it's a long flight, I hear, are there snakes? I don't like snakes, I'm getting old. What are you doing all the way out here if you're from Australia? I'm a Capricorn, what are you?

At that stage I told her I was Gemini and that today I was celebrating my 55th birfday with a nice ride and some solitude, that I needed to get rolling, sweet, earnest thing that she was. 'Devalin', she told me as she spelt it out. D-e-v-a-l-i-n-D-a-i-s-y. So no one will find me unless I tell them. You should look me up on Facebook. Uh huh. Then she grabbed my camera, I didn't stand a chance. She was r-e-a-l nice.




So I posed, as you do.




I rather enjoyed her monologue, as it took me away from my own thoughts and into another's world for a moment, but bid the nice lady farewell and was off. Seems she has a good life if travel and sightseeing, having convos with total strangers, and splurping your guts is a reasonable criterion. There's no one to fact check.

As I retreated into my motorbiking solitude, safely ensconced inside my helmet, I remembered: the road, the beach, the sky, the mountains, the ocean, and my loved ones, all of the reasons I came this way once again.











At day's end as I sat at the dining room table, glass of iced rum to hand, I surveyed my travels,. Up came just under 400 miles (640 kms) in under nine hours all up, with stops for a leisurely lunch in Forks (The In Place - not bad at all), Forks is home to the 'Twilight' series, ample stops for piccies and for just plain gawking at the incredible sights. I am blessed to have the chance.



The K1200GT is a velvet hammer. Amen.


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1987 K100RS, '93 Framed K11/K12 engine 'Big Block', '09 K1300GT, '07 K1200R, '04 R1150RT, '95 R100 Mystic, '77 R75/7.
Sniff...can you smell that? I think it might be bullsh*t.

    

10-ring

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happy birthday
G.


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85 k100 rt
    

RicK G

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Well Happy Birthday Mate.


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"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats." from Mencken's 1919 Prejudices

Bikes 1993 K1100 LT, 1998 K1100 LT, 1993 K75 RT, 1996 K75RT, 1986 K75 GS, 1979 Z1300 Kawasaki X 2 for now
    

Born Again Eccentric

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TWB - wow great ride & pics.

Your narrative is positively poetic - like a chapter from a best selling novel.

Of course in such a novel the chance encounter with the petite blonde would have ended an entirely different way (probably with you offing the sugar daddy in a sleazy motel room etc etc.).


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Paul

"Heidi" K100LT 1991 (Grey) (VIN 0190172 Engine No. 104EB 2590 2213) - 5th owner. January 2014 (34,000 - 61,000 miles and counting....)
"Gretel" K100LT 1989 (Silver Grey) (VIN 0177324 Engine No. 104EA 2789 2211) - 4th+ owner. September 2015 (58,500miles and counting....). Cat C Insurancewrite-off rebuild Feb 17
"Donor" K100LT 1990 (Red) (VIN 0178091 Engine No. 4489 2024) - 6th & final owner (crash write-off now donor bike). June 2012 (73,000 miles) to November 2013 (89,500 miles)
    

Holister

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Beautiful country for an adventure and a.... dalliance Very Happy

Happy Birfday


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1988 K100RT VIN No. 0094680
1989 K100RT VIN No. 0097367 (naked)
1996 K1100RS VIN No. 0451808
Fuel: 95 Octane
Engine Oil:Nulon Full Synthetic 15W50
Gear Box Oil: Nulon Synthetic 75W90
    

Two Wheels Better

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The first stop of the morning, nearly a hundred miles into the ride, to put on another skin as it was cool with a marine layer. The native names are always a hoot!



The second stop, at the roadside in the rainforest near Lake Quinalt, moss droops from pine bows, rhodies and ferns grow in wild abundance like some kinda ancient dinosaur food.



Crossing into the park boundary, one needs a quick stop for a photo op.



At last the ocean!



Native statue and wall mural inside 'The In Place' in Forks. The lunch was fresh and as ample as the waitress.



Forks, Washington, on a rare blue-sky day. Situated as it is in a remote corner of the Olympic Peninsula, it relies on logging and tourism, and is not unlike many other towns in rural areas worldwide, lacking in warmth, character or feeling, buildings scattered round here and there with no visible attempt at urban planning. Drive-up coffee shacks are on every corner. Dingy bars advertising Rainier Beer abound. It gets very dark here in the forest in the wet season, September through May and beyond. You needs your stimulants with your depressants.




The last hundred or so miles, with some urgency to get back home, I passed vast and strikingly blue Crescent Lake, followed the Strait of Juna De Fuca between Vancouver Island, Canada and the US, with the northern ridge of the Olympics at my right. I then crossed the Hood Canal and down the Key Peninsula, across the Tacoma Narrows Bridge's twin spans (recall the newsreel of that wildly gyrating bridge just before it collapsed into the drink far below back in the '30s?) and into Tacoma, near my current home. What a ride!


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1987 K100RS, '93 Framed K11/K12 engine 'Big Block', '09 K1300GT, '07 K1200R, '04 R1150RT, '95 R100 Mystic, '77 R75/7.
Sniff...can you smell that? I think it might be bullsh*t.

    

9Back to top Go down    Belated Happy 55 on Thu Jun 18, 2015 3:28 am

Sunnyk75

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great read!

Coming from Vancouver, I did the same ride on Saturday. Went south on I5 to Olympia where I caught hwy 8 west until I got the 101 North. The weather was warm and got warmer lasting well into the evening.

Your description was a nice reminder for some places we shared riding only a week apart. Thanks for posting the pics of the scenery as well as the one of the blonde mystery woman

Sunny

    

Tfreeze

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Wow, great pics and travelogue.

A couple of times I have ridden the Olympic Peninsula, but I have never headed south of Forks on the 101. I have ridden south on the east side of the park, and headed back to Bremerton.

Your pics make me wanna drive on the west side of the park.

Next time you ride the Olympic Peninsula, I recommend you try taking the 113 up to Neah Bay. It is only a small town with only a few places to eat/ drink coffee before turning around, but the ride up there was great.

    

11Back to top Go down    Re: Wednesday's Ride - Olympic National Park on Fri Jul 03, 2015 10:14 am

Two Wheels Better

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Agreed, both 113 & 112 are fine roads out to Neah, though the tarmac's a bit rough as it winds alongside the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The best bit is walking the timber pathway out to Cape Flattery, the Western-most point of the contiguous United States.


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1987 K100RS, '93 Framed K11/K12 engine 'Big Block', '09 K1300GT, '07 K1200R, '04 R1150RT, '95 R100 Mystic, '77 R75/7.
Sniff...can you smell that? I think it might be bullsh*t.

    

brickrider

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Nice report and pix! We could do with more like that. Thanks.
I'm likely to be in the same neighborhood in late August. Past experience riding there argues for that time of the year if one hopes for good (dry) weather. However, with much of the western US in dry and hot conditions this year, I suppose many other months are good ones, as you've shown.

    

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