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  • 9 Post By Quicklimegirl
  • 1 Post By ZXtasy
  • 6 Post By SmokeyMcNug
  • 1 Post By Quicklimegirl
  • 1 Post By Parilla125
  • 1 Post By unicycle
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Aug 8th 2016, 05:35 PM   #1
  Jan 2016
  92 miles from Windy Ridge, Mt. St. Helens

  2017 FZ-07; Z1000 Kawi; '84 RZ350; '76 RD400; '74 RD350; '75 RD125; '72 G5 100; '69 HS1.
Geez, in a hurry to die today?

Well there are a couple of very stupid, but lucky riders out there in Klickitat County or beyond. I was driving home from Spokane today, fighting the boredom and fatigue of going 350 miles in straight lines. I was about 2/3 home, going west on SR14 @ MP115. I came to the crest of a hill, started down, and was shocked to see two large Cruiser riders dead ahead in my lane. It appears they made the mistake of being the last two in a group of 5 or 6 riders all trying to pass a Semi in one fell swoop.

One of the reasons I prefer light and quick bikes is the relative ease and quickness you can pass other vehicles. However, from my own experiences of riding and driving SR14 in Klickitat County and beyond is the lack of enforcement seems to have emboldened truck drivers. For instance, I've had them dog me @ > 80mph when I was on the Z. I've dealt with many, many times trying to pass them...doing 35-40 on the hills behind them, and when it's finally clear to pass, seeing them pushing 75mph +. Of all the times I've been on that road, I've seen almost no State Patrol EVER on the straight part, so the truckers know this and really push it.

So the riders I encountered today might have underestimated the speed of the semi, but one fact remains: they didn't bother ensuring they had a far enough line of sight to truly be safe.

When I saw them I hit the brakes as hard as possible and tried to partly steer off the lane. It wasn't safe for me to completely leave the lane, too many rocks and boulders on the side. I thought for sure I'd hit at least one of them head-on. Somehow, they both barely made it past the truck and cleared my car with about 2 feet from either vehicle. I'm sure glad I wasn't sleepy and was fully coherant, because despite the fact they made the mistake(s) I'm sure it would be very difficult to deal with inadvertently causing someone's death.

What also made it creepy and disconcerting was this was only about 10 miles from the spot my ex-husband died on his bike because a car made an unsafe pass, and he had nowhere to go, either hit head-on or crash into the rocks on the side.

Please everyone, especially those who ride huge Cruisers, please don't overestimate your machine's accelleration capabilities, please don't try to have too many in a group pass at a time, and please ensure the road ahead is clear enough. The life you save may be your own.
Aug 8th 2016, 07:01 PM   #2
 ZXtasy's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Moses Lake, WA

  2013 Kawasaki Concours C-14, 2005 ZX-10R Kawasaki (Nekkid), '99 Yamaha TW-200
Thanks for posting. These moments can stick with us, good to purge them in words and maybe save a life...
beansbaxter likes this.
Aug 8th 2016, 07:02 PM   #3
 Rock Dodger's Avatar
  Feb 2016

It's a miracle that you didn't collide with those people. A lot of the cruiser folks incorrectly confuse noise with performance... and find out they don't have the needed performance at very inopportune times.

I know what you mean about trucks out there, so obnoxious!
Aug 8th 2016, 07:09 PM   #4
  Jul 2016

  2017 KLR650
I'm glad you're ok and were alert. I've driven that stretch but never in a group or at excessive speed. I'd like to think I know the acceleration limits of my bike but thanks for the reminder.
Aug 8th 2016, 07:26 PM   #5
 SmokeyMcNug's Avatar
  May 2016
  Olympia, WA

  1996 Kat 600 "Ras-tana"
I would rather sit behind a slow moving vehicle for twenty miles than have the possibilty of getting creamed by oncoming.
Aug 8th 2016, 08:33 PM   #6
 307T's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Washington County

Code Brown.
Aug 8th 2016, 09:05 PM   #7
 craiger's Avatar
  Apr 2016

  2007 Aprilia Tuono Factory, 2010 Honda VFR 1200f DCT
Horrible story, but thanx for sharing..maybe those not just on cruisers, but anyone on two wheels will pay attention to your story and they'll think about passing before attempting. As the saying goes, if one rider takes heed and it saves their hide, you did a good thing. Overestimating you and your machines' abilities can reap deadly consequences. If it can happen, it will. More often than not, at the most inopportune times. Careful out there people, be patient, listen to that little voice in your head, pause/wait/hesitate when in doubt.
Aug 8th 2016, 11:24 PM   #8
  Jan 2016
  92 miles from Windy Ridge, Mt. St. Helens

  2017 FZ-07; Z1000 Kawi; '84 RZ350; '76 RD400; '74 RD350; '75 RD125; '72 G5 100; '69 HS1.
Another thing that can be easy to overlook...especially with people like myself who aren't very fit--is the fatigue factor.

About 10 years ago I was riding to San Jose to see Kevin before he moved here.
It was late in the afternoon, and I'd already ridden >300 miles which included quite a bit of twisties. Normally I'm very religious about keeping a line, staying far from the center line. I was on another very twisty road, and around one corner I came periously close to the line. I realized I was getting very tired, and told myself it was time to slow down and watch myself until I could find a place to turn off and rest.

The very next corner, I was going uphill, when a huge cement truck came BARRELING down the hill, at least 1-1/2 to 2' into my lane. Had I not "caught" myself slipping the previous corner, it's likely my bike and I would've been in about 300 pieces!
unicycle likes this.
Aug 9th 2016, 05:01 AM   #9
 Parilla125's Avatar
  Jan 2016

Cruisers are not the only ones that can have this issue. All it really takes is someone coming the other way at a high rate of speed and all the sudden the 'easy pass' suddenly becomes an 'Oh $hit!' moment. Been there, done that...
The only bike I have not had a worry about 'on coming' cars when passing someone is a newer ZX14R... People doing a sudden unannounced maneuvers however, is a totally different issue...
Arnbo likes this.
Aug 9th 2016, 03:01 PM   #10
 unicycle's Avatar
  Apr 2016
  Washougal, WA

  Yamaha FJR 1300AE
I make it a point weather I'm riding alone or in a group to only pass if it is safe to do so for not just myself, but the vehicle I am passing (leaving room, etc.). I cringe when I see riders on group rides pass on corners just to keep up with the group. It's not worth becoming a hood ornament over. Wait and make a SAFE pass.

Sent via SM-G930V
TOPDECK likes this.

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