About Larry

I live in Bandon on the southern Oregon coast and I've been riding for a long, long time, years, decades. We won't go there kiddies but believe me, it's been awhile. During that time I've done most of my riding on the road with occasional off-road forays, most of which were intentional. Some weren't. Until just a couple of years ago I'd never ridden a hack - that's sidecar to those who aren't familiar with the lingo. I figure riding a hack up Alaska's infamous Haul road all the way to Deadhorse should top off my torture tank for quite awhile.

About Mac

Mac hails from Robins, Iowa and has been riding bikes longer than most people have been around. He managed to torture his old BMW past the 100,000 mile mark and presently rides a Yamaha FJR. His newest ride, a 2008 Ural Patrol is waiting on the dealer's highest shelf until the flood waters recede after which they'll assemble it and turn it over to him. The fact that he's heading to Alaska for his first journey on a new rig should tell you all you need to know about him...

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Day 5 - July 5th Oregon City lazing about

Today I decided to do absolutely nada. Well maybe for awhile at least. As it turned out I decided to do a small load of laundry after a manly breakfast of fried eggs - 3, totally FRIED, and the rest of my first can of Spam. Fresh brewed coffee too, and today I got it right, it was actually palatable. Mmm... Not quite enough holding power though so I finished off last night's leftover pizza topped off with a handful of salt licorice from Bandon. Now I have heartburn.
I decided to let Turbo and Camilla, the resident yellow and black labs out for some play time, then took a few pics of Mac & Randi's digs. What a piece of paradise this is, they're two people who've worked hard and are now enjoying the fruits of their labor. Or maybe they won the lotto and just never mentioned it to me?
Mac has an ongoing love affair raising Koi and his Koi pond would make most swimming pool owners green with jealousy. Some of his stock are very old fish, at least as fish years go. Don't ask, Marilyn told me but I filed it away in the remotest region of my brain cells where it is preserved for eternity. Or I'll wake up at 2:00am wondering what sort of dream made me think of Koi's ages?
Randi's interests take in llamas and Alpacas plus sheep. I have to admit they make interesting pets but I tend to favor Turbo and Camilla. Maybe it's because they don't snort at me. Better breath too.
Sometime today I may ride into town to replace the hair gel and deodorant I seem to have lost. How is that possible? Anyway it's not as expensive as the Bolle's and I don't have to visit the local factory outlet mall.

Day 4 - July 4th - Independance Day! Oregon City, OR

I said sad goodbyes to Tom & Robin this morning and headed north on 101 to the turnoff onto 26 east. Weather was a bit on the damp side, occasional showers but no big deal. The run from the coast inland to Portland takes you through some of the prettiest forests you can imagine, the stuff that tourists remember most.

Along the way I came upon the burned out remains of Oney's, once one of the more popular tourist stops between Portland and the coast. Sadly it appears someone decided to torch the place and so ended fond memories for thousands of travelers. There's a reward poster on the fence so maybe someone will end up paying for their misdeeds.

Arriving in Portland I stopped for lunch at my favorite place, Burger King and topped off my cholesterol tank for the morning. Figuring it would be prudent to find a place to pitch the tent early I called my former racquetball partner and long-time friend Marilyn for help. Our mutual friends Randi & Mac were up in the San Juans sailing over the holiday and I usually stay at their place when in the Portland area. Marilyn, keeper of the keys arranged to meet me there and let me in.

On the way I stopped by the falls at Oregon City and naturally nothings changed, still as interesting as ever only nowadays there are white-water boats full of tourists bobbing around taking pictures. When I was little I regarded the Willamette river as my grandpa's river; he had a small boat dock and ran a couple of hundred crawfish traps. We lived close to the river in Wilsonville and each year it would come to visit us....never quite reaching our house but that was just luck, it had flooded that same area many times.

Once unpacked and out of my riding gear we went to dinner at Bugatti's in Oregon City where great food and friendly service are their benchmarks. Afterwards we headed back to Randi & Mac's where Marilyn put a call through to them on the sailboat. Mac was kind enough (and a risk-taker as well) to provide me with the pass code to his wireless network so I could work on this blog. Just one more reason why I like these guys so much, they're absolutely the best. If you ever read this, thanks Mac & Randi!

Day 3 - July 3rd Backtracking to Cannon Beach

One of the things I wanted to do on this trip was hook up with friends along the way. Tom Huntington and I had worked together in the mid-sixties but after he moved to the coast we'd lost track of one another. We'd recently made contact and since he's living in Cannon Beach, south of Astoria I decided to head back down for a visit. And maybe camp out in his yard if I was lucky? The 4th of July isn't the best time to travel without reservations...
Once there I met his very lovely S/O Robin and their two sweet Corgi's. Robin was more than gracious when I called to see if my room was ready, said yes, get yourself down here now. Think about it, there she was trying to get ready for a trip to Portland on the 4th, had to make a salad for 26 people to take, her daughter and son-in-law were on their way for an over-night stay (with their two dogs!) and I just casually ring up and ask if my room is ready. What a great gal. They put me up in their guest cottage which truly beats the heck out of yard camping. Unless you're 10-years old maybe.
Tom and I spent hours catching up on ancient memories while consuming proportional amounts of alcoholic memory stimulants. Then we woofed down a truly great pizza procured in a Seaside pizzeria. There was a fringe benefit to the pizza run, I'd told Tom the ha-ha-ha story of my Bolle's so he took me to the local factory outlet mall where I procured two more pairs of sunglasses.
One of Tom & Robin's interests lie in funky art and they've collected tons of it over the years; it makes a visit with them a truly memorable experience. Oh yeah, I mentioned Robin's daughter and son-in-law brought their two dogs? One of them is a super sweet pug and the other is a 2-year old English bulldog named Emma. When they arrived Emma came at me like a freight train, nearly knocking me over followed up with lots of snorts and kisses. What is it about me and those silly bullies?

Day 2 - July 2 Fort Stevens State Park (Astoria)

Nice ride today, mild weather w/mist but no rain. Stopped along the Siletz river to look for the house used in the film Sometimes A Great Notion. It's still there, looks like a million bucks (I doubt you could touch it for several times that)
After that I took pics in Depot Bay of a building I once thought of buying. Decided against it as the Highway Dept was screwing around with things and it looked like they might be at it for years. It's still an art gallery and the highway issues were evidently resolved. Depot Bay has the shortest channel leading into their harbor and it was calm as could be. The last time I saw it there was a nasty storm cooking and the boats were struggling to make it in.

Next stop was to eyeball the sea lions and birds north of the world famous Sea Lion Caves. Mist was enveloping the lighthouse off in the distance, very nostalgic scene.
Moving on I paused to shoot a long distance pic of the big G on the mountain side above Garibaldi. When finished I rode on but realized in 1/4 mile I'd left my new Bolle sunglasses on top of the hack, a very bad habit. Sure enough they were gone and I rode back to the turn off, scanning the road side. Nada. So I did it again. Still nothing. Parked the rig and walked along 101 in full costume looking for them. Not fun, RevIt makes neat riding outfits but they're not worth a damn for hiking. Anyway I found them, or what was left of them. $130 gone. Plus the photo of the big G turned out fuzzy. Dang. Double Dang.

Feeling especially brilliant I saddled up and headed for Fort Stevens State Park just outside of Warrenton (Astoria). Nice young park ranger type lady set me up with a great RV campsite as the last tent space went to the guys ahead of me. At $22 it turned out to be a better deal as it had an electrical hook up and I was able to recharge all the battery thingies. After a gourmet dinner of Nally's Chili and a couple of G&T's I assumed the horizontal position for the rest of the evening. What a social dullard I am when traveling....