Look in the Blog Archive in the box to the right for past ride reports going back to 2006. New material posted as rides or other motorcycle news occurs. Thanks for reading. Comments always welcome, be sure to log in below. Comments will be reviewed. Please note the disclaimer below.

About Me

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Motorcycling has been a life changing experience. I hope sharing the info and pictures on the Blog gives you some idea how impressed I am with the experience, travel and the people I have met. Made new friends especially among Riders here in Orange County. Special recognition to Johney (Wrench)-helps with all the maintenance stuff+rides, plus other great riding friends: Ken Y., Luis V. & Minita, Chuck & Patty, John R., Joe, Carolyn, Gregg, Charlie & Carol, Rick, Stan P., Ed & Susan P., Barry, plus Terry, Bob B., Brian H., Glenn, William & Daveta Jo, Bob (Concho) and others. ************* DISCLAIMER: This is my personal write-up (Blog) of motorcycling news, rides and events that I am involved with in some way and not affiliated with any group, organization or club that might be mentioned herein. There should be no confusion regarding the fact these are my personal comments and not those of any other entity.

Amazing scenery, great ride, wonderful time.

Amazing scenery, great ride, wonderful time.
Monument Valley, Utah-9/2011 photo by Johney Harper!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Pre-Ride with Mt. Baldy SCRC

I meet John (Cuyo) at Green River Parkway off the 91 freeway Wednesday 02/23/2011 at 9 AM on the dot. We ride together to Tom's Farms at Temescal Canyon Rd. were we meet up with the SCRC group. The rider's on this outing are CSI-Jim our Ride Captain, another Jim, Tim, John R. (Cuyo), Dave, John-EZCruzer and Diesel. Hopefully in the pictures I get the right names on the right person. (We can only hope).
 We arrive at the gas station to meet up with the other members of SCRC, Mt. Baldy chapter.

This is ONE STEEP HILL!  The first time I did this hill on Clinton Keith it really freaked me out, on today's ride it just seemed to zip by us. Notice the compass wheel in each can use it to scan around and see more of the road, both ways.

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Today's ride was the result of an invitation by John (Cuyo) of Royal Star Venture fame from other week-day rides.  It's a rare opportunity to go on a Pre-ride for the Mt. Baldy Chapter of SCRC led by CSI-Jim.  I don't get to go on STAR pre-rides as I am never invited, so this is a great way to meet new riders and join in on their exploration of the route for their next chapter ride.  My past experience with another SCRC group was less than spectacular, so it was a real revelation and a joy to meet and ride with this group.  Ride leadership and group dynamics were both excellent. 

This is the route we took as a group starting in the Arco gas station at Tom's Farm and ending at Ruby's Diner in San Juan Capistrano, where we part company with the group and three of us, John (Cuyo), John (EZCruzer) and me (Richard) heading straight up the 5 Freeway back to home, while the rest stay on 74- The Ortega Highway back to the 15 and home...

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A major portion of the ride is on De Luz Murrieta Road through the back country below the Rancho Santa Rosa historic area and Plateau.  This is a typical road view along the way.

View Larger Map    We encounter 4 or 5 stream crossings including one that splashed my right foot with a gush of boot filling water.  These photos taken in drier times by Google Street View.

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 Rest stop at an Arco station. STAR would never stop at an ARCO...heaven forbid!  (you know I'll hear about this comment!)
A tool kit comes in handy with a mirror problem.

 Lunch at Ruby's Diner San Juan Capistrano and the last stop with the group.  These photos provided by John (Cuyo).

If you know where they serve good Pot Roast, John wants to hear about it.

Total trip for me was about 150 miles. 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

FOXEN CANYON RD. w/Ventura STAR chapter 258

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This is a huge ride and it needs a bigger map to show it all.  Door to door over 440 miles on the trip meter, all on Saturday February 12, 2011.  Before this ride started it was a choice between this ride or an alternate ride to San Diego to watch the historic air show with a huge fly over of hundreds of planes of all types from the air station on Coronado Island.   Considering the possible crowds and heavy traffic I choose the Ventura trip.

Early Saturday morning 6:45 I arrive at our meeting place on Golden West and Garden Grove Blvd. across from the Harley dealer.  This is Carolyn's choice, naturally-she rides a Harley Heritage Soft-tail.  Finally after nearly leaving them behind Luis and Minita show up on their V-Star 1300 which is for sale by the way.  We are hoping to arrive around 8:30 AM at the Ventura Chapter meeting place in Camarillo for ride briefing and meet and greet. 

Surprise, we get there and they go for breakfast...what, breakfast, unheard of.  STAR 230 has a meeting and off we go, there's is a more leisurely meeting combined with breakfast at the Marie Callendars.

Ride briefing commences after breakfast and we learn it's a 250 mile ride and there will be 20 motorcycles all in one group, again totally different from our own chapter protocol where we would have two groups for sure. 

 Amazingly even though the line stretches quite a ways back, it did work out rather well considering.  So off we go heading up the 101 to the 154 which goes up past Lake Cachuma and past the turn-off to Solvang to the Foxen Canyon Rd. turn-off.  The pace is spirited but reasonable and proceeds very well.  The canyon is very scenic with lots of vineyards and wineries.
 We pass the Fess Parker Ranch and several other very big home and winery estates.  If you ever want to do a back country wine tasting tour this might be a great choice.

View Larger MapThis is the driveway to someone's home or estate on Foxen Canyon.

 Off in the distance is where we came through
Our first gas stop is in Santa Maria back at the 101 Freeway.  We are heading on toward a lunch stop in Los Alamos which is 15 miles down the freeway, and of course our route is about 30 miles through the back country near Vandenberg Air base.

Lunch stop at Charlies Hamburgers in Los Alamos.

 I did not even want to touch that thing, really moldy.

 This just has trouble written all over it.  Carolyn trying out a Suzuki V-Strom.

We did not stay for lunch even though the hamburgers are supposed to be great, this is a very small hamburger stand and it would probably take well over an hour to get through it all.  So we head out and stop back in Camarillo at Carl's for a quick bite and then home.  One rider from the group joined up with us on the ride back as far as Hwy 126, with me leading this time.  We are all glad we took this trip.

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Chapter ride to Santa Paula

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Early (7:30-8:30 arrivals) and meet and greet.

 I should get a GPS system, this one looks well done.

"Rac" owns the red V-Star 1300 with the great light set up.

I thought Tehachapi was a complicated route, but today's first of the month chapter ride changed my mind about that.  Uphill and down, around tight curves and more tight curves. 

Approximately 22 motorcycles plus about 30 total riders in three groups head for Santa Paula, CA but we must take the long way and off we go.  This includes taking the 210 past Pasadena up to Sunland, getting on Foothill Blvd to Osborne Ave which turns into Little Tujunga and Sand Canyon a famous twisty road in these parts, then on to 126 via Bouquet Canyon and a straight shot more or less to Santa Paula.   I had stopped in Santa Paula on a weekday ride with John and Bob so I knew about the statue, but we were heading for Ventura Harbor on that ride.

 Our intended destination is supposed to be the Oil Museum in Santa Paula but I don't think anyone actually went there.

We all arrive back at our new end-of-ride meeting spot at Ball and State College. 
This trip was about 250 miles or so and I now have over 17,300 miles at the 1 year anniversary of Road Star ownership

Lesson learned: I'M REALLY GETTING RATHER GOOD AT THIS! Don't want to get overconfident or wear out my welcome but my riding skills have really improved over the past year. Johney is tired of hearing me go on and on about my new riding skills but he along with ride Captain Ed both mention I was doing a great job of keeping up and not allowing large spaces between me and the next motorcycle up front of me while in the really twisty parts of Sand Canyon and Little Tujunga Canyon. Remember this blog is all about me so of course I can do some bragging.

Other observations between this and the Tehachapi trip:  The lower plastic guards I added for wind protection are doing a fantastic job of keeping my legs from getting really cold.  I had not realized how beneficial they are until last Thursday's ride.

My Stebel horn does not work on the freeway due to excess wind somehow causing back pressure.  Working on solution.

When I ride and use the proper skill sets in the tight turns and twists, I get a lot less tired.