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Jul 19th 2016, 01:49 PM   #1
 ashfoot's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Forest Grove

  '07 GSXR-600, '05 CR85r
Our Epic 4 Day Trip: Beaverton, Grants Pass, Klamath Falls and Bend

I have a tumblr page for the posts I wrote leading up to the trip listed in my signature in case anyone is interested. It details the packing list and thoughts that had run through my mind. This trip was planned more than a year and a half ago.

I'm saying thank you a little bit early but thank you for taking the time to read it!

Day 1: Beaverton to Grants Pass, 371 miles

Route: Hwy 219, 99W, Hwy 223, Hwy 20, 99W, Hwy 58, Hwy 97, Hwy 138, Hwy 62, Crowfoot Rd, Butte Falls Hwy, Hwy 234, Meadows Rd, Evans Creek Rd, 99, Grants Pass

Favorite Road of the Day: Hwy 58 and Meadows Rd.

Today was going to be great! First day of the 4 day trip? I should have butterflies and be so excited that I didn't sleep the night before! I should be dreaming about gracefully dipping in and out of turns and flying down the road like a bird. I should be imagining myself looking up towards the sky to see a vast baby blue backdrop with puffs of little pure white clouds like something out of a painting.

What actually happened?

Waking up to the feeling of a large vise slowly putting pressure on your brain was not what I had hoped for. Looking outside the window didn't get my hopes up either. It wasn't raining but the sky was dark, gloomy and overcast. If I didn't know better, I would have thought it was going to rain or at least sprinkle at some point during our ride. Well this isn't good luck, I thought.

I started having second thoughts. Yesterday, I took the dogs to a friend's house who would watch them for us. We also went to my parent's to drop off Taylor. It wasn't until we got back home that we realized how empty our home was. Last night was tough. I had shed a couple of tears before bed. It was the first time Taylor had ever slept so far away from us. It felt weird walking into her bedroom not seeing her sweet expressionless face snoozing away. It's amazing how much you forget you love someone until they aren't there.

Was our trip worth it? Would Taylor forgive us? Would it rain? Would we get hurt? Is the route too long? These questions circled my throbbing head as I took some pain killers.

I continued to get ready, showered, packed the last few items into my bags and walked down the stairs. That's what I do, instead of pondering deeply, I set myself on auto and go through my routine. Grab the leathers, helmet, gloves. Attach the bags to the bike, now go and eat some breakfast, don't drink too much water, you don't want to have to stop every 30 minutes, ok, now put on your boots, jacket and gloves, don't forget to lube your chain! Methodical...Too much deep thinking and my brain goes into overdrive. Having a process means I won't have time to think of the what-ifs.

Everything went into my two Kriega bags

Lubing up our chains

Warren and I had mounted up on our individual bikes. Him on his silver and white steed and me on my blue and white unicorn. Did I really just call Nacho a unicorn? He certainly is magical but he doesn’t have a horn. At least not one that physically sticks out. Ha!

As I close the garage door behind Warren and I, I say a little prayer. Before every long ride or trip I always have to say something. It's kind of a tradition for me and it helps me feel better knowing that at least someone is looking out for us.

Cold and numb. That's how the first 3 hours of our trip was. Since it was overcast the sun wasn't warming us up. We stopped quite a few times, mostly because we had to pee. Goes to show no matter how little water I drink in the morning I always seem to have to go more than I'd like when I'm out on the road.

Stopping somewhere on Hwy 20

The roads before arriving in Eugene did not excite us. So there wasn’t much to say about them. I had found a route with a few twisties but we were still behind a lot of cars and semis. I had planned on us eating lunch in Eugene but once Warren found out that Ninkasi Brewery didn't serve food we decided to stop in Oakridge instead. But not before making a pit stop at Dexter Lake. Here we had a few snacks, made use of the facilities, breathed in the fresh air coming off the lake, and basked in the sun that was making it's appearance around the popcorn like clouds that scattered the sky.

Just look at those clouds!

Our happy faces!

In Oakridge we found a BBQ and coffee/smoothie joint. The BBQ brisket was delicious! The beans not so much. They had a little hardness to them like they needed to be cooked longer. I also got a berry smoothie that was very yummy but I wasn't able to drink it all before we were back on the bikes trying to get more miles behind us. By this point, we were about half way to Grants Pass and it seemed so far away!

This BBQ restaurant wasn’t opened but it’s sister site further back on the road was. I thought this was a cooler building though

Owned by the BBQ joint, this was the coffee and smoothie booth.

The portion of 58 after Oakridge was amazing. I myself had never been on this portion of the highway so I was pleasantly surprised to find that the road had been recently paved and freshly painted. There were very wide double lane sweeper curves where we could pass semis going up the Willamette Pass at 70-80 mph! Let's just say at that speed it's exhilarating! We stopped at the Chevron in Chemult and continued on toward Crater Lake but we didn't actually visit it. We would visit on Wednesday before we headed towards Bend.

Hwy 58

138 aka Crater Lake Rd. aka Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway was the longest straightest road I had ever seen! And travelling this road with a bunch of cars and a couple semis did not make it any more fun. Especially when one of the semis didn't want to be passed.

Waiting in construction traffic on 138

From there we turned onto 230 and came across a red mini SUV. We decided to pass it but they decided to tailgate us, not liking that maneuver I'm guessing. We were on more straight roads, so losing them was kind of hard. I radioed to Warren, "We'll lose them in the twisties," "Ya, that's right." He said. And that's exactly what happened. A few nice corners here and there and the little red car was no longer behind us. We could finally relax and take in the sights.

Up ahead I could see a bridge in the distance. It was gorgeous! I could see the span a half mile away and knew I just had to stop! I decided to pull over and Warren did the same as soon as we rolled onto the bridge.

Lost Creek Lake

Unfortunately, the red SUV that had been tailing us earlier had finally caught up and also decided to pull over right behind us. They got so close to us (considering how long the bridge was) and parked that I thought they may have wanted to have a little chat about our passing skills. Warren radioed to me with concern in his voice but when I looked into the mirror I could tell that the driver and the passenger were both female. I laughed, "looks like a couple of college aged girls looking for a joyride!" I said. They probably thought we were both dudes but once I took my helmet off they were taken aback and acted like it was better to look over the side of the bridge than to confront us. I got a kick out of it and took some pics.

You can tell here that Warren is smiling

Next up was a road I had seen on the map that looked pretty interesting. Crowfoot Road had a lot of twisties. It ran from highway 62 to Butte Falls Highway. What I didn't realize was how narrow the road was and I also didn't see the the cattle guards. The shoulder melded into the road which meant that hugging the double yellow felt the safest as you weren't quite sure as to what was gravel and what was actual asphalt. It was an interesting road as we passed by many farms that looked quite sketch. We didn't pass a single vehicle going the other way which added to the creepiness. All-in-all, I took this road at a very slow pace taking in the smells and observing the houses that were in abundance on this road.

With that road behind us, I was looking forward to the next road we would hit. I had heard of Meadows Road and Evans Creek Road from a fellow PNW-er (Candiya!). She took this road almost 3 years ago and was one of her favorites. I made sure that these two roads were on our route as I had wanted to check them both out.

Maybe it was because I had already traveled over 300 miles by this point or the fact that I had seen so much that day that I had higher expectations than I should have. Meadows Road was in no doubt wonderful. It had been awhile since we had seen a straight stretch of road so it was a welcome relief to ride up Meadows Road and view the countryside in a different way. We had just turned onto Evans Creek Road when I noticed that my bike had hit it's 50K mile mark. I just had to pull over and take a picture!

After starting back up and riding the rest of Evan's Creek Road, I just wasn't feeling it. I've ridden better roads I thought. Not to belittle my fellow PNW-er but I just couldn't see the thrill. The trees hugged the road making it a little too dark for my tinted helmet visor and there were strips of gravel in the corners just when I wanted to go fast. Maybe the road changed in the past three years...maybe it was different when she went through. I could only hope but every road is thought of in a different way by different people. It's in the eye of the beholder and type of bike made for the task I guess. I cruised on.

As we made our way to the small town of Wimer, I pulled over in front of the covered bridge after alerting Warren to my plans. I had seen the bridge on the map and thought it would be a cool photo op. Warren on the other hand thought this was another sketch town with a sketch store across the street. While I was the one who got off the bike to run across the road to take a picture, he never left his seat. I don't know, I don't watch horror movies so I have much lighthearted feelings toward small towns and small stores.

The covered bridge in Wimer

And the store next to it

It was about this time that exhaustion set in. All I wanted to do was just get to the hotel. My hands and right knee were sore. I'm not quite sure why, but my right leather pant leg has always put pressure onto one spot on my knee. The pain had been bugging me non-stop and I couldn't wait until we rolled into the parking lot of the hotel so that I could walk around instead of being hunched over in a squat position. I tend to ride with my feet off the pegs hanging down a lot when it starts to irritate me.

Finally, after regretting not taking the short distance up I-5 to finish the last bit of miles, we arrived at the La Quinta after riding down 99 and up through the small town of Grants Pass. I have never been so happy to arrive at a hotel!

Finally made it down south where the sun is out all the time!

After checking in and dropping our stuff in the room, we both promptly removed our leather pants and boots in exchange for jeans and shoes. I absolutely love that feeling. Now we were able to cruise the town looking for a dinner spot which we found easily after a quick search for a brewery nearby. The Wild River Brewery had some pretty tasty pizza and I had a few sips of Warren's beer. There was a family that sat next to us whom I recalled was staying at our hotel. I only remembered because one of the kids had purple hair. We found out they were on their way from California to Seattle via I-5. They asked where we had come from and Warren told them we were from the Portland area but that we had been on the road since 8 am. They were pretty surprised when they learned that we had only been traveling by way of back roads.

Back at the hotel and all I wanted to do was fall into bed to go to sleep but I stayed up a bit longer to start writing today's blog. All-in-all it had been a great day, no issues with our bikes and no spills. I had wanted to hop in the hot tub downstairs but I was so tired I thought that I might have fallen asleep in the tub if I did. I decided to skip it and fall asleep instead. Tomorrow is going to be awesome, I thought. We had a jet boat excursion planned, a visit to the first ever In-N-Out Burger in Oregon, (we may get to see an old friend) along with riding another great road I had heard tons about on our way to Klamath Falls! Our trip was just getting started!

Our bikes locked up together being all cozy

Perfect for viewing our babies

Edited by ashfoot on Jul 29th 2016 at 06:32 AM Reason: Added more photos
Jul 19th 2016, 07:24 PM   #2
 Motorbiker's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Silverdale, WA

  1987 FZR 1000
Great write up. I grew up in Eagle Point and used to take day rides all over Southern Oregon on all of the roads you listed and more. It is true that each road may be viewed differently in the eye of the rider and differently: at different times. Thank you for the adventure and Write on!
Jul 20th 2016, 05:52 AM   #3
 ashfoot's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Forest Grove

  '07 GSXR-600, '05 CR85r
That's awesome! I did notice now clean the roads are down South! You are lucky to have grown up there!
Jul 20th 2016, 07:19 AM   #4
 coastrider's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Oregon Coast

  2017 BMW R1200RT
Great photos and text. Looking forward to the updates. When all done let us know what equipment you used, what you didn't, and what you wished you had taken but did not. Safe travels.
Jul 20th 2016, 09:39 AM   #5
 ashfoot's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Forest Grove

  '07 GSXR-600, '05 CR85r
Certainly! The trip is done (rode last week) but writing up the report/blog is taking a bit longer. I've got photos from both my phone and a stand alone camera not to mention GoPro footage.

I'll make sure to do a wrap up on the equipment. It's always nice to know what others found useful and what wasn't.
Jul 20th 2016, 10:21 AM   #6
 larsvons's Avatar
  Jan 2016

  '15 KLZ1000, '03 SV650S
Looks great! Any chance of GPX or map link?
Jul 20th 2016, 11:15 AM   #7
 ashfoot's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Forest Grove

  '07 GSXR-600, '05 CR85r
Here's the route I plotted on

I then used an app called Track Navigator that let me know where to turn 0.3 - 0.5 miles before the turn.
The app was pretty awesome actually and only once did it say GPS signal was lost. It doesn't use data so in the most remote places of Oregon the app was able to use just the GPS to navigate us through.
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Jul 20th 2016, 11:54 AM   #8
 larsvons's Avatar
  Jan 2016

  '15 KLZ1000, '03 SV650S
Originally Posted by ashfoot
I then used an app called Track Navigator that let me know where to turn 0.3 - 0.5 miles before the turn.
The app was pretty awesome actually and only once did it say GPS signal was lost. It doesn't use data so in the most remote places of Oregon the app was able to use just the GPS to navigate us through.
That's rad! Been driving myself crazy looking for something similar for iOS. Can't find anything to close the loop between planning on a computer to mobile turn-by-turn offline nav.
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Edited by larsvons on Jul 20th 2016 at 12:02 PM
Jul 21st 2016, 12:40 PM   #9
 ashfoot's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Forest Grove

  '07 GSXR-600, '05 CR85r
Day 2: Grants Pass to Klamath Falls, 122 miles

Route: Hwy 238, I-5, Dead Indian Rd, Clover Creek Rd, Hwy 66, Hwy 97

Favorite Road of the Day:
Dead Indian Memorial Road

This morning turned out to be a better start than yesterday. No headache and no overcast sky. There was even a hot air balloon situated in the sky just right so that it looked like a picture off a postcard. Today was going to be a great day!

Can you see the air balloon?

We headed down to the Hellgate Jetboat Excursion after eating breakfast at the hotel that wasn't actually half bad! There was cheese cooked into the scrambled eggs and the sausage was delicious. I also had a muffin and some yogurt. Of course, I probably had low expectations of the free breakfast so when I had my first bite I was nicely surprised.

Surprisingly, breakfast was not bad at all!

I decided to book the jet boat excursion back in December. It was suppose to be for Warren's surprise birthday two years ago but plans fell through. This time, that was not going to happen!

When the 2 hour jet boat ride had finished, we not only were wet but sunburned as well. We were smiling ear to ear walking back to our bikes. Our boat guide spun us about 8 times drenching the whole boat with water spray. I also had a nice water gun squirted at me from a passing kayaker and all I did was wave to the guy! That'll teach me not to wave at people while on a boat!

Between spins and sudden stops, our boat guide gave us a little insight into the land around the Rogue River, the Rogue River itself as well as the creatures that lived there. I got photos of Bald Eagles and other birds that lived in the area. We also found out why they call it Hellgate. There was gold mining in the early years and the only way to get equipment into the canyon was by wooden rafts. The rocks were so close and jagged, and the water fast moving, that many lost their lives after hitting the rocks. Hence the name Hellgate Canyon.

Our boat

A bald eagle sits on a branch

Another bald eagle devouring a fish

A blue heron sits on an old water pump that was washed down the river during the 1964 flood of the Rogue River

Hellgate Canyon. I can just feel the history here and imagine all the lives that were lost

Hopping on the bikes, we made our way back to our hotel to checkout. We gathered our things, packed the bikes and were off again but not before making a gas stop and a Dutch Bros Coffee stop. Dutch Bros originated from Grants Pass so I had hoped that we were sitting in the original one. I found out later that we hadn't visited the original but the one we did visit was cool just the same.

A walk in, sit down Dutch Bros? Don't see many of those!

We set off on 238. Now 238 sort of parallels I-5 but it is a much more fun road to be on. It had a few great slight corners but it wasn't anything to go home bragging about. No, I was waiting for the next one. The one I heard that locals love...

While we were cruising down the road in the fading chilled morning air, I radioed Warren, "Remember that one episode of Hotel Hell when Gordon Ramsey visited a hotel in Oregon?" "Ya, what of it?" He said. "Well that same location is coming up on our left and I'd like to stop there!" I said happily. The Applegate River Lodge was right on the Applegate River. A river that feeds into the Rogue River which we learned about while on the jetboat excursion. I knew the lodge was coming up because I had remembered the bridge that they showed on the episode. As we rolled into the parking lot, crunching the gravel underneath our tires, we pulled in closest to the bridge, turned off our engines and hopped off our bikes. I tried getting some good pictures but the trees around the lodge were trying to hide the huge log cabin building. I could hear a banjo playing faintly in the distance along with a family of three walking toward it. It was really quite quaint!

The Applegate bridge in the background

I tried to get as much of the building in the photo

Time to continue on.

As we made our way into Medford, I had to stop at the first ever In-N-Out Burger in Oregon. If not for the burgers, which I did get, but for the t-shirt! It's kind of a thing for me. I have an In-N-Out shirt from Utah, California, Arizona and now Oregon. I guess you can say I'm trying to collect one from each state. Stopping here also made it possible for a friend to join us and catch up. As I was walking back towards the bikes holding a red tray with two delicious looking burgers, the t-shirt under my arm and my helmet with gloves tucked into it, I could see a figure in jeans and a dark shirt standing next to my husband.

Warren and I met Dillon at TNC (aka Tuesday Night Coffee for those who don't know) back when we were first dating in 2009. He's had some hard times lately so I was thrilled at the thought of meeting up with him! It wasn't long after, that he had moved down to Medford.

The Medford In-N-Out Burger, I don't think I've ever been to an In-N-Out without a blue sky behind it!

Dillon and Warren chatting it up like old times!

After our initial greetings, what have you been up to's and general talk about life, we started talking about the route we were taking. "Dead Indian? That's a great road to ride out here!" Dillon said. "I'd also suggest 66, 140 isn't bad either but watch out for cops!" "Let me know what you think of Clover Creek. I don't think I've been down that one." Dillon said. "Will do!" I said.

After giving Dillon the farewell partings, Warren and I swung our legs back over our saddles with stomachs full of burger. Warren wanted to make one last brewery stop in the area so we headed over to Southern Oregon Brewery to have a taster and to cool down from the heat that we had been absorbing while at In-N-Out Burger.

Southern Oregon Brewery aka SOB

Their beer menu

Finally, we were ready to leave Medford. A couple of weeks ago we decided to not partake in the second route I had plotted that led us into Northern California. I would have loved to travel towards Happy Camp via Cave Junction/Greyback Rd. and hit Hwy 96 (which I had heard good things about) but it was much too late in the day to take on that kind of ambitious trek. Maybe some other time, I thought. Today's ride was not going to be as many miles as yesterday's which was fine by me. A little jaunt down I-5 heading into Ashland, (I was hoping to completely miss hitting I-5 but it didn't happen) and this next road should be a fun one!

And oh boy was I glad it was! Gliding through each corner with perfect speed and grace. My bike and I felt more connected than ever. I had never felt so in tune with Nacho, it felt like he was loving the feeling of hugging the corners and in turn he loved taking me along for the ride. Dip to the left, now right, another left coming up and now into a tight right turn hairpin corner, now a tight left turn hairpin corner. I was a luge speeding down a pipe, only the direction we were heading was up the mountain; making each turn smooth and gentle but with enough speed to make it feel like I was just playing with the road. It was a dance! With as much fun as I was having I could have sworn the road was licking at my bike's tires pushing me forward for more!

It wasn't until some time later that I just had to stop. I was missing all of this glorious scenery! I had to take in the sights that I was passing. Although this road had been the best so far on the trip, the best views were unfortunately passing us by. Slowing down, I found a perfect straightaway to pull over and take in the scene. Beautiful! The landscape of trees and the valley against a backdrop of eye pleasing blue sky was like a picture from a book. I was in my happy place, I could have sat down on that grass and just watched the grass waving in the wind all day. But we had to keep moving.

The view off Dead Indian Memorial Road

The rest of the trek towards Klamath Falls was kind of dull. Clover Creek Road, I had mentioned to Dillon about, was mostly straight and had plenty of chipmunks that liked to run across the road. I mostly chose this road so I didn't have to hit Hwy 140 which would most likely have had more traffic on it.

We got to the Shilo Inn and stripped off our leathers again only to don our jeans and shoes. I can never get tired of that refreshing feeling! We ate dinner at the Klamath Basin Brewery and my brisket was so good that even Warren had wished he had ordered what I got. We decided to indulge and ordered a taster tray since we had never had their beer before. Not half bad but we didn't get to try out their Red since they were fresh out.

The delicious brisket with some awesome fries!

The beer taster tray

After locking up our bikes for the night, I again thought about dipping into the hot tub, I'll just wait until Bend, we'll have more time then! In bed by 11 and I was pooped! Another great day in the books and it's only suppose to get better! I assumed as I drifted off to sleep.

Goodnight Klamath Falls!
Candiya, FeralRdr, JohnK and 2 others like this.

Edited by ashfoot on Jul 27th 2016 at 08:31 AM Reason: Added more photos
Jul 21st 2016, 09:40 PM   #10
 Mel's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Lebanon, Oregon

  Daytona 6-7ty-wow, TW-200
Great write up so far Ash I need to go back down there and explore more
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Jul 22nd 2016, 07:15 AM   #11
 no splat matt's Avatar
  Jan 2016

  With a grin on my face
Nice ride, great pics and interesting write up. Thanks for sharing!
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Jul 22nd 2016, 07:29 AM   #12
 Candiya's Avatar
  Jan 2016

  BMW F800R, Honda CBR250R
Great write-up! I'm really enjoying your writing. Thanks so much for taking the time to put it together. I understand how much work it is!
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Jul 22nd 2016, 08:41 AM   #13
 ashfoot's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Forest Grove

  '07 GSXR-600, '05 CR85r
Thanks Candiya! I feel honored by your presence since this whole trip was dreamed up after reading your ride reports and book! I was at a low point when I started planning this ride which helped me brightened my outlook on the future and looking forward to the trip!

The format was taken after your writing style which I love!
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Jul 27th 2016, 09:49 AM   #14
 ashfoot's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Forest Grove

  '07 GSXR-600, '05 CR85r
Day 3: Klamath Falls to Bend, 164 miles

Route: 97, 62, Rim Drive, 138, 97

Destination of the Day: Crater Lake and Deschutes Brewery Tour

Favorite Road of the Day: No favorite today as most of the ride was on 97 (Boooring!)

Leaving Klamath Falls was business as usual. Get packed up and loaded, check out and search for gas. We had walked down to the restaurant and lounge next to our lodging to get our free complimentary breakfast. It wasn't as good as the La Quinta's breakfast but it'll have to do, I thought.

Morning in Klamath Falls

The bikes looking like they are ready to move!

We headed to the nearest gas station off of 97 to gas up the bikes. Just as we were about to leave, I heard a semi horn blare and brakes squeaking. I look up and on the highway was a semi-truck with it's trailer still across the road completely stopped because they were waiting for pedestrians or a car to cross. The semi that had blared its horn had to come to a skidding stop and wait for the other semi to clear his trailer from the road. I'm guessing someone may have needed to change their pants later. "Well that's the most excitement I'll have for awhile" the gas station attendant said. I chuckled, oh how I love you small towns.

Going through the valley and riding besides Klamath Lake was such an awesome sight! We got hit by a ton of bugs but I was alright with it, the road stretched neatly around the lake and I found myself thinking deeply. But not about anything back home. You'd think I'd be thinking of Taylor, wondering what she was up to, wondering if she was having fun. Instead, I was thinking of how many people had driven this road, how long ago did the first settlers stake out this part of the state and how many people in the future would get to see what I'm seeing right here, right now? It made me feel insignificant, minuscule, microscopic. Like I was one of the bugs splattered on my helmet visor. What does it all mean? It was that kind of deep thinking. There has to be a reason why there are beautiful things in this world. Why there are roads of every shape and size cutting through the land. We are all here to enjoy the gifts of Earth, from the wide expanse of the ocean to the overgrown wilderness forest to the sparse brown desert landscape with canyons and cliffs. The whole world is beautiful and such a lovely sight to see. I just wish I could live long enough to see the whole world and what it has to offer.

Riding along Klamath Lake, daydreaming

So as I listen to the roar of the engine between my legs, feel the wind whipping around my helmet and take in the smells of the wonderful landscape around me; I feel like I'm home. I was meant to travel this world, meant to see this with eyes through a helmet and to feel the wind on my skin. Humans were not created to sit still, to not move, to not experience life. They were created to explore, to test their limits and to exceed them!

Don't get me wrong though. I missed my daughter terribly every time I wasn't on the bike. But when you are on a motorcycle, everything gets pushed to the back of your mind. In this moment, at this time, it's just you, your bike and the world showing you its splendor.

Every night since we left home I had called my mom asking how Taylor was doing. It turned out that while she loved baths at home, she did not think highly of them at her grandparent's house. She would cry constantly while getting washed and also while having her hair shampooed. She would also cry if my mom left the room while she was trying to fall asleep. Other than that though, Taylor had a fun time going to the beach and to the Grotto in Portland and eating a lot of blueberries!

The turn off towards Crater Lake meant passing all the cow farms on the way up the mountain. I had to go pee right as the speed limit dropped to 45. I couldn't believe it, how could they do that to me when I had to go!?!

I felt like I was paying the $10 bike fee at the entrance just to use the bathrooms! We headed up toward the Rim Village Cafe after making a pit stop at the Mazama Village for the bathroom and Warren was able to somehow take a picture of me while riding.

Making our way up to Crater Lake

Once we parked, we got off the bikes and walked over towards the lake. We came across some very friendly chipmunks that I was sure Taylor would love so I snapped a picture as well as took a ton of photos of the lake. We were lucky to see Crater Lake with clear skies. All my friends and family who had visited had come when it was overcast or raining! Swatting at the peculiar black and white bees hovering around I asked Warren if he was hungry, "Not really" he said, "but if you are we can go into the cafe."


Crater Lake

I thought this photo looked like an optical illusion. Doesn't it seem like I'm looking up towards the sky?

The faces riding the bikes

No explanation needed

We walked into the Rim Village Cafe and I instantly cringed at the prices. "$6.50 for a sandwich half the size of a Subway with less ingredients? Jeez!" I decided to settle on an $8.50 chicken rice bowl which I thought would be a heartier meal and may warm me up as I was a little on the cold side due to the elevation. Not worth the price in my opinion, but I was hungry and I wanted something besides a melted Cliff bar. It did the trick! I was warmer and it was pretty good. I started to notice that they had used a lot of seasoning on the chicken by the time I was almost finished eating it though.

$8.50 for this? Yup, it's sad...

We got back on the bikes to look around and see if we could find a good spot to place our bikes for a photo op in front of the lake. As we were just passing one of the viewpoints, I did a double take. "Hey I think I see someone we may know!" I radioed to Warren. Earlier, I had let him take the lead as I wanted to get GoPro footage of him riding, "I'm turning around." I yelled. "Wait, what? I can't do that right now!" he said. "Sorry, just turn around whenever you can!" I made a tight circle and then back tracked to the two motorcycle riders that had just put their helmets on. I could have sworn I knew the female until I got closer and felt a little embarrassed. Trying to play it off, I waved to them as they swung their legs over their individual bikes and took off. After they had left I started to position my bike in front near the rock barrier while Warren cruised up. "What happened?" he asked. "Oh it turned out not to be someone I knew" "Figures..." he said. Once we had our bikes looking the way we wanted them to we took a few pics.

Riding the rim

The riders I didn't know -_-

Our bikes in front of Crater Lake

Saddling back up on the bikes we didn't get far until we hit a 10 car backup waiting for a flagger to let us by. Apparently, there was road construction going on even though the North and South entrances were opened. We turned off our bikes and put my kickstand down so I could sit with my feet on the pegs. To pass the time, I started dancing to the music I was listening to, moving back and forth on my seat while swatting at the hovering bees interested in my bug splattered helmet.

Can you see the bee?

When it was finally time to move and we passed the flagger with the "Slow" sign, Warren and I got a rude awakening. "Are you serious?" he asked. "we have to cross over muddy roads?" I cringed. I knew Warren hated taking his bike over water, mud and gravel. It's a sport bike you know. A bike that is pampered all time and taken meticulous care of. This bike never sees a drop of rain! It shouldn't be too long of a section I thought. Oh man was I wrong. Around each corner it looked like the dirt/gravel/mud road continued on and on. I didn't see an end in sight! A mile later and actual pavement could finally be seen!

Turning onto 138, we had to open it up. It's got to be one of the most straightest roads I've ever seen!

Then came 97. Borrrr-ring! We were so thankful to see the Welcome to Bend sign. 70 miles on a very flat straight highway is no fun but we had to get to the Deschutes brewery tour by 3 which meant we had to check into our next hotel by 2. We ended up making the tour time after dropping off our stuff in the hotel. The room was not what I expected but it sounded like most of the rooms were filled so I decided to shrug it off. Think about a movie where the actors check into some motel in the middle of nowhere. Dark, gloomy, stains on the walls, old tube get the drift. Well that's what the room was like.

Just like a movie set

We did the hour long tour and drank our free samples as well as chatted with a Deschutes employee that Warren had been in contact with before our trip. Warren is a huge fan of Deschutes beer and had started a collection of their barrel aged Abyss among other Deschutes beers. At $25 a bottle, the Deschutes employee knew Warren was a loyal fan and wanted to buy him a beer and chat.

Did you know that Deschutes employees have their own tap in the break room and can have one beer after their shift is over? Plus they get a free case of beer every month and a bottle of whatever new special release is out. I thought that was pretty awesome!

Warren is actually really excited. He knows he's in heaven!

The rules for Deschutes employees

Deschutes Brewery tour

We headed off to the Deschutes Pub for dinner and Warren and I started talking about the hotel room. "I don't even want to go back to our room, it was so dark! I don't remember the pictures of the hotel looking like that." I said. I proceeded to look up google reviews of the hotel. The pictures were gorgeous! I knew I didn't reserve a suite or a room with a Jacuzzi but even just a normal regular king sized room looked more updated than ours. We came to the conclusion that we would go to the front desk to ask about our accommodations, even just to see if there was a slightly better room.

Meanwhile, dinner was awesome! The food just melted in my mouth and the taste! Oh I hadn't had food like this anywhere during the trip!

The Deschutes Pub

My delicious burger

Warren's Reuben

We had only taken Warren's bike to the tour and to dinner so I had to go back up on the passenger seat. Let me tell you, I am so glad I have my own bike. Sitting 2 up on a sport bike is just not very comfortable but I do appreciate the ladies who only ride this way. After just a few blocks my wrists and arms hurt because of the way I have to hold onto the tank. But I do like straddling Warren and I absolutely love it when he pats my leg trying to bring me in close.

We arrive back at the hotel front desk and two customers were being taken care of. As we were waiting, a lady came out asking if everything was alright. She had remembered seeing us earlier and was curious. Warren started talking about our travels and how the past places we stayed at didn't look anything like the room we were in. "You guys in the 200 building?" we both nodded our heads, "Ah, I see, I got you covered, don't worry about it." She swiftly types on her computer and gets some cards ready for us. As she tells us where the new room location is we thank her profusely. She didn't have to give us a new room so it's situations like this where the generosity of people amaze me.

We enter into our new room we both dropped our jaws. We couldn't believe it! She hooked us up! The room was double the size of the room we just left and there was a window which looked out on the Deschutes River. There was Jacuzzi situated close to the window and a fireplace on the other side of the wall. Not to mention the modern bed, kitchen counter with sink, huge bathroom and the LCD TV monitor. "We got a suite?! Wow!" I exclaimed. I couldn't believe she upgraded us to 1st class! Warren walked back to the front desk to hand over our old cards and to thank her again for her generosity.

Jacuzzi is near the bottom of the pic

That bed looks so inviting!

View out the window

It had been a great day and I could finally relax! I called my mom one more time to let her know what we had done for the day and to also ask how Taylor was doing. I can't wait to see Taylor's face when she sees us! Today was a good day but tomorrow will be one of my favorites, I thought. I haven't been on these roads for 4 years and had missed them terribly plus we'll get to see Taylor by the end of the day!

PS. Yes we did use the Jacuzzi. I finally got my private hot tub!
Candiya, FeralRdr, JohnK and 3 others like this.

Edited by ashfoot on Jul 28th 2016 at 06:37 AM
Jul 27th 2016, 04:46 PM   #15
 no splat matt's Avatar
  Jan 2016

  With a grin on my face
Looks like the ride just keeps getting better. Thanks for the post!
ashfoot likes this.

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