Author Topic: Death Valley ride report  (Read 2457 times)

Offline blackbuell

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Death Valley ride report
« on: April 20, 2018, 05:11:55 AM »
Take my advice: never try to ride across the entire width of Kansas during a wind advisory. So far it has been a cold and windy ride. Day one made it from Cincinnati to Pomme de Terre state park in Missouri. Was 32 degrees at start of ride. Not too bad in afternoon. Great place to camp. Day 2 was hell on rt. 54 in Kansas. Sustained 35 mph winds with higher gusts. Stayed in motel in lovely downtown Dalhart, Texas. Was 27 degrees at start of ride on day 3. Actually wasn't  a bad ride until western NM; wind kicked up dust; also some brush fires made visibility tough. Gave up the battle with the wind in Holbrook. Should arrive at destination later today; looks like good riding weather for entire day.

Jon
Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2018, 06:51:54 AM »
Jon,

It's breezy out there!  Two of us rode our Bonnevilles out West starting May 31, 2006, and hit headwinds going out and coming back.  Seems like the weather can be a coin toss.  The previous year, I took a solo ride on the R100GS from Hudson, OH to Garden City UT and back via Interstate to Hannibal MO, then US36 across much of Kansas, I 70 into Moab, UT, then north on US 191, some other roads to Garden City.  Not a drop of rain all the time I was out.  That's a rarity.

Enjoy the trip, and keep us posted.  Fingers crossed for much improved riding weather for you.

Bob
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Offline Zoom Zoom

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2018, 07:17:00 AM »
Jon, it sounds like you're having quite an adventure so far, not that you haven't had some interesting life experiences in the past. I hope you have a safe and fun trip. Hopefully, we'll run into each other someplace this year and you will have some stories to share.

Safe travels,
John Henry
A wide, unfettered road ahead,
and the flying motor singing.
Samuel C. Lancaster 1921

oldbike54

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2018, 07:44:39 AM »
 35 MPH winds , meh , that's light breeze in Western KS  :laugh:

 It has been unusually cool out here in the middle , the weather should be better on the trip back . If you come back across Oklahoma give me a shout Jon .

 Dusty

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2018, 07:44:39 AM »

Offline Lannis

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2018, 07:59:19 AM »
Wind of that kind will get you more tired, worn out, and "why-am-I-doing-this" than rain or cold will, at least for me ....

Lannis
"Hard pounding, this, gentlemen; let's see who pounds the longest".

Offline blackbuell

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2018, 08:19:24 PM »
Day 4 of trip was much better: left Holbrook at first light. Rode through subfreezing temps around Flaggstaff. After that the ride was relaxing and scenic, except, of course the part through Las Vegas. Made time; arrived in Beatty at 1:00. Had a few beers then headed into the park. Stopped at Zubriski Point. The park is amazing. No regrets about the hardship getting here. Looking forward to the next 2 days of riding in the park.

ZZ: hope to see you at the Ohio rally. I hope to see you there too Bob.

Jon
Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2018, 08:19:33 PM »
Wind of that kind will get you more tired, worn out, and "why-am-I-doing-this" than rain or cold will, at least for me ....

Lannis
It really beats you up!

Bob
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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2018, 08:20:34 PM »
Day 4 of trip was much better: left Holbrook at first light. Rode through subfreezing temps around Flaggstaff. After that the ride was relaxing and scenic, except, of course the part through Las Vegas. Made time; arrived in Beatty at 1:00. Had a few beers then headed into the park. Stopped at Zubriski Point. The park is amazing. No regrets about the hardship getting here. Looking forward to the next 2 days of riding in the park.

ZZ: hope to see you at the Ohio rally. I hope to see you there too Bob.

Jon
It'll probably happen!

Bob
Main ride:  2008 Guzzi 1200 Sport (sold July 2020)
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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2018, 08:30:29 PM »
Were you on the Norge? My 2011 Norge sucks in strong crosswinds. Not from a handling point of view but that the air some how curls around the leeward side of the bike and just slaps the crap out of the side of the helmet.
GliderJohn
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Offline blackbuell

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2018, 09:30:12 PM »
GJ,

Yupp, That's what I experienced. Neck was very sore st end of day.

Pic of Zabriskie point

« Last Edit: April 21, 2018, 06:05:21 PM by blackbuell »
Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah

Offline blackbuell

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #10 on: April 21, 2018, 06:10:39 PM »
Day 5,

Tony (ITSec) rode his griso up from Las Vegas. He lead us on a ride of some great roads into the park, within the park, and out of the park. One of the most scenic and fun rides of my life. Thanks Tony. The park is an amazing, unique place. Willride in park tomorrow, then head to Sedona.

Jon
« Last Edit: April 21, 2018, 10:04:52 PM by blackbuell »
Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah

Online Chuck in Indiana

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #11 on: April 21, 2018, 07:03:26 PM »
Day 5,

Tony (ITSec) ride his griso up from Las Vegas. He lead us on a ride of some great roads into the park, within the park, and out of the park. One if the most scenic and fun rides of my life. Thanks Tony. The park is an amazing, unique place. Willride in park tomorrow, then head to Sedona.

Jon

The Lloyds did that for me back in the day. It was my introduction to twisties.  :thumb:
Chuck in (Elwood) Indiana/sometimes SoCal

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Offline ITSec

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #12 on: April 21, 2018, 07:27:20 PM »
Day 5,

Tony (ITSec) ride his griso up from Las Vegas. He lead us on a ride of some great roads into the park, within the park, and out of the park. One if the most scenic and fun rides of my life. Thanks Tony. The park is an amazing, unique place. Willride in park tomorrow, then head to Sedona.

Jon

Happy to share it with you. Enjoy the rest of your trip and ride safely.  :thumb:
ITSecurity
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Online Chuck in Indiana

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #13 on: April 21, 2018, 07:55:16 PM »
Attaboy, Tony..  :thumb:
Chuck in (Elwood) Indiana/sometimes SoCal

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Offline Zoom Zoom

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2018, 05:45:14 AM »
From Sedona, head down to Jerome. I was once told "You ain't been to Arizona unless you been to Jerome!" Anyway, a cool place just up the mountain from Cottonwood.

Also on the way down there is a place called Slide Rock State Park. I don't know if it is open or active this time of year but worth a quick stop if it is.

John Henry
A wide, unfettered road ahead,
and the flying motor singing.
Samuel C. Lancaster 1921

Offline blackbuell

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #15 on: April 22, 2018, 02:43:22 PM »
Day 6:

Rode into park at 5:30 This morning. Took a nice hike between Zabriskie Point and Golden Canyon; gorgeous solitude (pic). Later rode north and west. Outstanding ride in mountains west  of Panamint Springs. Stopped at ghost town of Rhyolite. Need some rest; prepping to begin ride back home.

ZZ,
I will check out Jerome and the park; might camp there.

« Last Edit: April 22, 2018, 02:45:21 PM by blackbuell »
Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah

Offline blackbuell

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #16 on: April 22, 2018, 03:24:28 PM »
The Norge had performed well on the trip. No problems, tires holding up well. Since I arrived in Beatty, the bike has gotten better than 50 mpg.

Pics of Norge at park entrance and in ghost town of Rhyolite.





Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah

oldbike54

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #17 on: April 22, 2018, 03:32:21 PM »
  :thumb:

 Dusty

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #18 on: April 22, 2018, 05:50:04 PM »
Beautiful, Jon!

Nothing prettier in my opinion than a 2v Norge.  And the scenery in the background isn't too shabby, either. 

Keep posting us whenever.  I (we) enjoy the pics and the narrative.

Bob
« Last Edit: April 22, 2018, 06:21:35 PM by ohiorider »
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twowings

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #19 on: April 22, 2018, 06:38:07 PM »
Gorgeous Norge!! The perfect bike for that spectacular scenery... :boozing:

Online Chuck in Indiana

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #20 on: April 22, 2018, 07:16:54 PM »
Quote
gorgeous solitude

I never understood why people loved the desert until several years ago I flew out with my friend Paul (RIP) to look at an airplane he was thinking about buying. I listened to them flying away in the distance for a bit until I realized I heard.. nothing..at all. I was completely alone with my thoughts for maybe the first time in my life.
At that point, I got it.
Chuck in (Elwood) Indiana/sometimes SoCal

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Offline Green1000S

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #21 on: April 22, 2018, 07:19:49 PM »

Great pictures, what did you use to shoot them?

I'll be heading to DV in early June. Might be hotter than on your trip;-)
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Offline Lannis

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #22 on: April 22, 2018, 07:25:02 PM »
I never understood why people loved the desert until several years ago I flew out with my friend Paul (RIP) to look at an airplane he was thinking about buying. I listened to them flying away in the distance for a bit until I realized I heard.. nothing..at all. I was completely alone with my thoughts for maybe the first time in my life.
At that point, I got it.

It's hard to do that, even in a desert, or even in the Alaska wilds.    There's always a jet flying somewhere, the sky is generally full of contrails, and you can hear them faintly far off if everything else is quiet.

To me, that was the most shocking thing on 9/12/2001 .... no jet sounds, no contrails.   It was spooky; I hadn't realized how conditioned I'd been for 45 years to hearing aircraft all the time in the background, and seeing contrails ....

Lannis
« Last Edit: April 22, 2018, 08:10:30 PM by Lannis »
"Hard pounding, this, gentlemen; let's see who pounds the longest".

oldbike54

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #23 on: April 22, 2018, 07:27:55 PM »
Gorgeous Norge!! The perfect bike for that spectacular scenery... :boozing:

 We're gonna start calling your Norge "George" .

 Dusty

Offline blackbuell

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #24 on: April 22, 2018, 07:48:51 PM »
Thanks Dusty. I like that name, will start calling it that.

Green1000S,

It will be MUCH hotter then. Be prepared. Pics were taken with cell phone. Didn't have room for my good camera

Jon
« Last Edit: April 22, 2018, 08:14:05 PM by blackbuell »
Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

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Online Chuck in Indiana

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #25 on: April 23, 2018, 07:00:08 AM »
Thanks Dusty. I like that name, will start calling it that.

Green1000S,

It will be MUCH hotter then. Be prepared. Pics were taken with cell phone. Didn't have room for my good camera

Jon

It's not the name on the hammer handle, it's the guy swingin it..  :smiley: Cell phone cameras are getting to be remarkably capable.
Chuck in (Elwood) Indiana/sometimes SoCal

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Offline blackbuell

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #26 on: April 28, 2018, 07:23:21 AM »
Back home again. Return trip was pretty uneventful. Took side trip to Surprise, AZ to visit sister; nice to see her. Then made a big mistake: rode to Sedona; not my kind of place, overdeveloped and overcrowded. Couldn't get away from there fast enough.

From Sedona took back roads and ended up on rt. 60 in western, NM. Stayed in Datil at the BLM campground; wonderful place, cost $2.50 for the night.

Next day rode to Liberal, Kansas. Stayed in motel.

Next day rode on rt. 54 to another favorite campground in Pomme de Terre State Park in Missouri. I was the only person camping in the entire section. Did I already mention that I enjoy solitude? It sure is nice to be able to pee where you are whenever you feel like it.

Home next day.

The ride home was much more enjoyable than the ride out: warmer and the lighter winds were mainly at my back. It was still a challenge, averaged about 550 miles per day.

Over all I was very happy with how the Norge performed. Used no oil (brought a quart with me). Comfortable, except during the strong cross winds: tough to keep head up straight. I have only owned this bike since November, and it only had 4,000 miles on the ODO when I left for the trip; wasn't sure how it would do on a 5,000+ mile ride. Fuel mileage: on way out was only about 38 mpg (strong headwinds most of the way, ran a lot at 80-85 mph). at destination: 50+ mpg (took off dry bag and topcase), on way home: about 44 mpg (light tailwinds much of the way, lots of miles at 80-85 mph). Rear tire still has some tread left (not much though) after 6,000 miles.

The trip was certainly worth the effort. Now to attend to the bike....

Jon
Bikes: 2007 Norge, BMW F800GT, YAM RD250, 2017 Indian Scout.

I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonopah

oldbike54

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #27 on: April 28, 2018, 07:25:58 AM »
  :thumb:

 Dusty

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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #28 on: April 28, 2018, 08:57:33 AM »
Fabulous adventure. I love that picture at the 190 E/W junction at sunrise. Thanks for sharing it all.

And the desert... yeah it's not for everybody, which is totally cool by me. I love the wide open spaces and solitude. And the desert has a subtle charm and beauty to it. along with the expansive views and endless horizons, there are lovely seasonal changes, such as cactus and ground-flower blooms that are simply stunning if you can catch them at the right times.
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Re: Death Valley ride report
« Reply #29 on: April 28, 2018, 09:11:58 AM »
Jon, nice trip report!  Never ridden a Norge.  How does the fairing perform in bad weather.  Sometimes just as important, how much does it isolate you from the ride?  I've owned a couple of full faired bikes.  The 1993 K1100LT had so much fairing, I only enjoyed riding it in colder weather.

OTOH, the Norge fairing appears smaller, much less intrusive.  Opinions about it?

Obviously, you really like it, since the is the #2 Norge you've owned.

Congrats on a great ride!

Bob
Main ride:  2008 Guzzi 1200 Sport (sold July 2020)
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Harper's Moto Guzzi. Where we still answer the phone, use the highest quality parts, and also do Transmission, rear drive, and carb rebuilds fast. Call us at 816.697.3411 and get your problems resolved.
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Advertise Here