Suds break in early August 2001 by Westport grocery, bait store, and post office. We had ridden down from Jedediah Smith Redwoods SP above Crescent City that day. Photo shot by Mike Plant.
Ride Summary by Michael Plant | View Michael's Webpage
Marysville to Red Bluff (via Hwy 70 and 99): 95 miles.
This is a fairly boring route, but there is no real other quick way to get up the valley. The views of the Buttes are nice. Also, all table dances are only $10 at the strip joint about 15 miles north of Chico on Hwy 99. The campground was not bad for a one-nighter although the camp hosts left much to be desired. Steve did an admirable job of diffuse the situation. Disappointed I didn't get to see Dreamboat Nance, but Sam the "seedy weed makes me horny" was well worth the price of admission.
Red Bluff to Hayfork (via Hwy 36 and 3): 77 miles.
Hwy. 36 is as usual a most excellent route. Had a little scare on the part where the road is going along the crest of the ridge about 10 miles or so out of RB that kept me sane for the rest of the day I do believe. One of these days we need to take 36 the rest of the way. Wonder if that priest is still out there wandering the highway near Platina? The section right out of Red Bluff as well as btw Platina and 36/3 junction are move vote for favorite section.
Hayfork to Callahan (via Hwy 3 and 299): 89 miles.
Nothing too exciting about this route. Hwy 3 is a good road. Not great. Not bad. Was kewl to get some flashbacks from earlier trips through the area. The section right before you hit Callahan wear it climbs up the ridge is usually pretty good, but sucked this time as I got stuck behind a fifth-wheel. Just to tight to try to pass.
Callahan to Happy Camp (via Cecilville and Hwy 96): 106 miles.
Wow...talk about excitement. The first part was a pretty good road, but the one-lane was a mind blower. It was hot, tight, with hardly any front vision plus you had the killer views of the river down below. Trying to soak it all up was maximum overload. Glad Dr. Steve was blazing the trail. The road conditions were fairly shitty in the middle, but would probably do this road again. Should get a little nimbler bike for these kinds of trips? Definite killer road all together. Somes Bar to Happy Camp was a nice leg stretcher after the tight twisties. Dr. Steve was an animal through here. He was thinking about beer I do believe.
Happy Camp to Crescent City (via Indian Creek Rd and Hwy 199): 94 miles.
Indian Creek was a killer road. Would have been nice to know you were now in Oregon, but then maybe I missed it. And of course, the redwoods are always awesome. There is not much more that can be added about the route into Jedediah Smith State Park. Excellent. (The mileage included the trip in to CC and back to camp, but not all the futzing around we did in town.)
Crescent City to Arcata (via Hwy 199 and 101): 85 miles.
Fucking Cold!!! But still beautiful. The fog was pretty cool in some ways. But mainly just cold and fairly miserable. Wondered a lot about the Harley that went down. Why? How? Hope they weren't seriously mangled. Hesh's selection for breakfast was great although I had some doubts that it was going to be "Crescent City for dinner" thing all over again. However, the food was excellent and the bathroom was so nice until ...
Arcata to Garberville (via Hwy 101 and Avenue of the Giants): 74 miles.
Half sucked and half was excellent. The sun coming out while in the redwoods was nice. Plus the ride through the canopy is always cool. Graeme passing cars is just an added bonus. I am fucking pissed that we didn't go through one of the drive-thru trees...waaaahhhhh!!!!!
Garberville to Westport (via Hwy 101 and 1): 52 miles.
Another excellent road. Too bad it got foggy again, but not as bad as the morning. It has been a long time since I have been of the north part of 1 and forgot how twisty it was. Excellent ride. [Note: Dr. Steve...those shiny things at the end of your handlebars are called mirrors!] The beer was still nice and cold.
Westport to Boonville (via Hwy 1 and 128): 69 miles.
This was another great section. Man, I am just repeating myself, but again another great section of road. Traffic wasn't real bad and 128 is a killer canopy road that I like so much. [Note to Graeme and Dr. Steve: I knew we'd beat'em or I at least tried to set a pace that would.] The "kill switch" trick south of Fort Bragg was like the ultimate memory. I almost peed my pants laughing so hard. The Buckhorn Saloon was great. We'll definitely be going back there. For the beer of course.
Boonville to near Kelseyville (via Hwy 253, 101, 175 and 29): 64 miles.
253 is a pretty decent road, too bad about all the construction. I can't believe that punk with the flag was trying to give us shit. 175 ROCKS!!! Good pavement, tight curves, and an excellent view of Clear Lake from the summit. Never been on it, but will definitely be doing it again. Hwy 29 and Hesh picks up a nail about Kelseyville. I was most impressed with his demeanor and ability to quickly solve the situation. Steve and I of course we a very big help as Steve provided the air and I documented the entire process. What would you have done without us? (Probably finished 15 minutes faster.) I hope that you made it the rest of the way with now problems.
Near Kelseyville to Marysville (via Hwy 29, 53, 20, River/Pass/Butte House Rds and Hwy 70): 95 miles.
29 and 53 are boring. 20 was OK. Sorry to see Steve go Hwy. 16 by himself, but I wanted to just get home as it was already 7:40 pm. It is always a treat coming down out of the hills, or anywhere for that matter, and seeing the Buttes. I know I am almost home. I stopped in Colusa and bought one SNPA, took the River Road out of Colusa and up Pass Road to the summit where I enjoyed the last beer and watched the first stars come out for the night. There had been a fire burning somewhere in the hill south west of Stonyford area that I could see the smoke off of while cruising down Hwy 20, but from the Buttes and with the darker skies, I could see the flames (or a fairly large glowing red area). Was an awesome and eerie sight. I finished the evening by lighting a Flower firework, which I had been carrying around all trip, but kept forgetting about.
Total mileage = 900 miles give or take a mile or two for rounding
All in all an excellent time. Definitely great seeing every one again. The roads were awesome. Even in spite of the fog, it was just a fucking excellent w/e.
I think next trip we should end up 1 day in Somes Bar. Arrive about noon and set up camp early in the day in one of the nearby campgrounds. Then take a case of beer down to that beautiful (paradise) swimming hole w/ cliff diving rocks and kick back.
Maybe do something like 36 to the coast, 101 to Eureka, back on 299 to 96 and 96 to Somes Bar. Them finish 96 to Yreka, I-5 to Mt Shasta, and 89 back down to Hwy 49. Some thing to think about. Although I like the case of beer at the swimming hole idea as well.
My classic opines:
Hesh: My side is still killing me from the stunt with Graeme's kill switch in Fort Bragg. That has to be an all-time classic. Also, the roadside tire swap was most impressive.
Dr. Steve: Has one of the widest rear tires I have seen. I know because I looked at it most of the trip. How it fell over in Hayfork with that rear is hard to fathom. That thing should stand up by itself. BTW, you still have about 3" of tread on each side that you can lean over on!!!
Grumbler: Watching you blaze up past traffic is one of my all time favorites sights, but damn you are a noisy mother fudder in the morning. Could wake the dead. But as usually, you mapped a great route. Here's too you! [Interesting side-note: Microsoft Word recommends "motherfudder" as one word not two.]
Steve: Disappointed in that I didn't see one wheelie. (Don't give me the BMW excuse, 'cause I watch Hesh a few times.) Steve picked out the skanky beer, I just succumbed to peer pressure. (I wonder if they call it Great White 'cause if you drank enough of that skanky shit, even the sharks wouldn't want you.) Too bad you didn't live closer so we could some more riding in together huh?
Me: I think with a little more planning, I can get 1/4 cord of wood and the ice chest packed on as well as a couple of more chairs for the rest of you. You notice that I didn't even have to use the handlebars or front fender. Maybe next time I'll throw in some Swiss Miss Instant Cocoa for you non-coffee drinkers. Non-coffee drinkers?!?!?! ... that's just plain weird!