Doesn’t Feel Like Winter Anymore….


2015 – EASTBOUND-Down and Around the USA Trip

January 15th & 16th 2015

I don’t seem to be really making that much distance each day.  Having too much fun meeting so many nice folks on the road and hospitable folks allowing me into their homes.  Today, Friday, Jan. 16th  I met this young man, CARLOS.  His family owns this little restaurant in Rio Dell, CA.

Great little restaurant and service/food too

Meet smiley Carlos who has to be one of the nicest, polite and happy young man I have met.  Adorable too.  It’s OK I say that I told him to his face. Continue reading

Day 1 of how many?


January 14th 2015

It was weird to ride across the Sumas, WA border this time. Weird because I have no clue when I will ever be back in that neck of the woods ever again. I am moving back to the east so when will I come back to BC via my bike? That’s why it was weird. My bike has left Canada for good unless I ride it up to Ontario later to sell.

I left late this morning. Late for me. My house has been having many showings and I keep getting the boot. My last two houses sold in one day. I hate this crap…being asked to leave my own house but it’s part of the deal.

It was cold this morning but not cold enough to use anything else but my regular set up. Heated liner and gloves. But I am prepared if the east coast decides to get nasty with me. I was looking at a USA map. I always do this to myself…when you look at the nation on one map I always overwhelm myself with my grandiose plans for a ride. I am making a huge “U”.

No need to rush I always say to myself…take your time but what is it with riding? At least for me I always feel I need to make a route plan…only day to day, never more than that and feel this need to hit my chosen destination. I mean I love power riding but I was talking to this couple. They only ride X amount, make sure they have plenty of time to set up camp if they are camping, drink a few beers, light a fire and have a nice dinner.

Me? I always arrive right before the sunsets and I feel like I am running around versus relaxing. Tonight was not that bad. I arrived in Forest Grove, OR at a very nice couples home who contacted me through my FB page. They offered to “host” me for the night. Arrived around 1800 hrs, we chatted, Scot and Carol that is, had great green chili, homemade bread for a local bakery and salad. Topped off with some beer.

Scot rides a 1200GS and Carol a 700GS. Neither are huge fans of dirt riding but love riding together. They also enjoy 4 wheeling with their very cool Jeep in their driveway.

Heading through Washington I spent most of the morning looking through fog. I expected this and knew the sun would eventually break through. I am so used to starting a trip in the rain so the cold and fog was not a bother.

I hope to make it to Eureka, California tomorrow but not sure if I will. I know I will stay close to the coast and end up in Southern California in the next 2 days maybe? Head over to Arizona and take it from there. Day by Day. I have a feeling I will not be having to use my heated gear after the wee morning hours soon. Knock on wood, the regional forecast is not that bad south. Doesn’t really feel like total winter even here in Oregon.

Very bad video I made right before I left.

In my head I keep flip flopping…do I move or do I stay. Well, taking my bike to NY and leaving it there I guess makes my decision for me doesn’t it?

Good news I get to take another great ride with really my only time limit being me.

Look how nicely the sun burnt its way through in southern Washington and that was pretty much my ride for the rest of the day. Cool and sunny.

I added a Scottoiler for this trip. Curious about all the good things every says about this gadget. I must have had the setting set well. No spraying effect and the chain looks good.

Added Amber plastic covers to my hi test aux lights and have to say MAN am I seem in the fog with these. Doesn’t really help me see but cars see me for sure.

For day 1 it went pretty well…road about 545 KM’s. Seemed longer but I made it to where I had to.

Not much left for me to see around this area but I did cross a new bridge, the Lewis & Clark bridge…wicked.

and caught a beautiful sunset as I rode into the awaiting garage that was left open for my bike by these fine folks of Oregon.

I will head out as these guys head to work tomorrow. Destination unknown for now but towards California. Here’s to good weather, no snow and a safe and fun trip.

Continue reading

KLIM Adventure Rally (July 6th – July 20th 2012) part II


Part I CLICK HERE

This years summer trip was way shorter than last years epic ride with Triumph Canada, 2 Triumph Tiger XC bikes to Alaska.  Not 44 days long but only 11.  Why?  Leslie started a new job in January and was not able to get a large amount of time off this summer.  As a matter of fact every day Leslie used for this break from work was banked OT not vacation time because she is not able to take “vacation” until her probation is over.  BTW, should have been over July 16th.

KLIM Trip

In any case, every ride no matter how long or short can turn out to be an adventure and this was no different.  This trip we contended with temperatures ranging from 12 C (53 F) to 42 C (107.6 F).  The beginning of this trip we saw triple digits. Continue reading

JESSE LUGGAGE INSTALL & More


Here are a few pictures of Cheryl installing our Jesse Safari panniers on Cheryl’s BMW when we first got her bike in December 2009.  We are fans of the Jesse luggage system because of its lean profile and no drag effect on our bikes.  We used Jesse Odyssey panniers on the Triumph Tiger 800 XC bikes this summer as well. Again, lean profile, very innovative mounting system, sturdy and we think great looking too.  Also, the mounts do not attach to the fender at all.  They use the frame of the bike only and that is something we like too.  I have also included other farkles we have added once we got the bikes and still have them all on our bikes presently.

For the Triumph Tiger Al Jesse has made the mounts very specific for the Tiger by adding a very cool T800 detail.

***For the record the main reason we did not take the Triumph Luggage on our trip to Alaska ( I have been asked many times why) was because the mounting system for the Triumph bags is made out of plastic.

According to our “sources” the mount is right off the Triumph Sprint ST system.  Based on a type of swivel motion that allows the rear portion of the mount to move when the bike leans.  That part of the mount made us nervous not only because it is made to move with the bike but if we had dropped or crashed the Tigers we were pretty certain this part would break easily.  Can’t remember where I read an actual magazine review out of the 100’s that are out there, but I think our theory was proven when a media test rider dumped the bike in sand and the mounting system broke making it unusable. 

The back piece also hits the bags when in a lean or turn.  What I mean is it is not attached to the panniers and again like I said made to move.  With all the pounding the Tigers took up north we also were not sure if the plastic panniers would be able to take all the constant impact over time without jeopardizing the integrity of the bags.  Constant banging in the same spot we believed would eventually takes its toll on the outer shell of the Triumph panniers.  We could be wrong but for a true ADV panniers system we feel things need to be secure and attached with no ability to move.

So, in the end we are confident although we did not crash or test the Jesse mounts or bags that we made the right decision.  Until Triumph makes a true ADV durable mount for their Tiger we would not recommend their luggage system.  Again just our opinion.

Here is what our mount looks like on the Beemer

We have the 8 inch bags.  Jesse now offers the Safari in 9 inch bags which if we ever had to buy again we would actually like that extra one inch room. On the Triumph bikes the bags we had 10 inch and still managed to stay within the handle bars width wise.  Here is a pic of the bags on Cheryl’s Tiger she rode.

I do not like the idea of having luggage that is much wider than the handle bars to be honest.  Just my opinion.

Non can side is a bigger pannier.  We were able to fit all our gear, camping etc for our Cross Country Trip in 2010 in these panniers.  We also have the 45L top box.  The lid liner Jesse sells is an awesome way to utilize that space and they come with a little bracket to keep the liner in place so nothing falls down when you open and close the lids.

Here is the complete pannier system on my bike

Jesse skid plates are on both our bikes.  Not the most substantial skid plate on the market but so far so good.  We have hit quite a few boulders and other obstacles and this plate remains intact. 

Jesse offers crash bars too.  This is a picture of his first version.  Since then Jesse has added more stability to the bars at any weak points.

I have tested these bars only with laying the bike down for a snooze.  No crashes but with the weight of the bike on its side the bars did not move at all.  A little touch up paint they are as good as new.

Hard to see in this picture but if you look closely you can see more supports in the new version of the Jesse crash bars that we have on our bikes now.  I will try to get a better picture soon.

Good view of the bags when they were BRAND new.  I still have the stock tires on the bike too! :-)

Cheryl’s bike loaded with new bags

We both have the Cee Bailey shields 16 inch Euro version.  I think if we were to replace the shield we would get the 18 inch.  Both shields are still looking good despite all the crap that gets on them.  Easy to clean but are showing some wear and tear with scratches.We have also added an OEM bracket to stabilize the shield more for the bumps.

Good view of the system outdoors

Take away the four Helen Two wheels black bags on the side of our Thermarest pads and this is what we fit in our Jesse 8 inch bags for our summer 2010 Cross Country trip.  Cheryl is an amazing packer.

Adding the Denali LED lighting system to our bikes has been a HUGE benefit not only for the rider and expanded view of the road but for others to see us.  I have these on almost all the time I ride for the extra visibility and safety.

Small but powerful

Our GPS is a Garmin Zumo 660 mounted using a Tourtech system.  GPS stays on Cheryl’s bike because I suck with navigation even with a GPS. ;-)

The 2 of us enjoying a cozy dinner after a rainy ride, what else is new for us on our trip down the Oregon Coast in April of 2010.

Me in our OLD gear that would get soak in the rain and also this picture was after we rode through a mountain pass in Oregon in April and got caught in a snow storm, 2010.  We were both happy that we made it through.

So that is our set up for the Beemers.  If and when we ever get new bikes we would make sure we have all the same accessories.  Not sure if they would all be Jesse stuff but overall we are more than satisfied with his ability to make more than just great luggage!