Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Drunk Horse Tour - Day 5

I don't know why it's taken me so long to get further into documenting this trip. But it is.

After getting soaked the day before, I decided to follow the sun. I had planned originally to go meet up with some folks in Southern Idaho, but hell, sometimes you just have to go where the front wheel leads you.

South on 55

I started running south. I have to add that I don't know where my notebook is, so this will be by memory and pictures alone.

From what I recall, I was looking for a dirt path into Oregon. But after several dead ends, never did find it.

Eventually, instead of continuing to try and go 'right' (that's West when you're heading South) I decided to say f*ck it and I headed the opposite way. I don't even really recall why. Maybe I saw a sign. Maybe I just followed the sun. I know that I'd been to wet and miserable the day before.

Eventually I found my way into Placerville.

Now, a KLR doesn't handle that well at the best of times. But loaded with luggage in sandy soil. Well, I still had fun :)

Once I'd reached the metropolis that is Placerville, I snapped off a couple of photos.

It looked like the kind of place I'd love to spend a few days. But I had to move on.

The road out was filled with marble sized rocks. Some definite hairball moments. But less that I'd expect. In the end, I did a loop east of Hwy 55 but ended up back there. Finally I was headed west again.

Did you notice the sunny and friendly sky?! It factored large in my decision to head west. Some image are floating back to me now as I sit here, so many months later, and write about my trip. The highway West was not all that interesting and compared to some of the travelling I'd done, rather boring. But it kept me moving West and away from the shitty weather.

Eventually I got back to Oregon

I did a lot of looping around, exploring for paths that were shown on maps but didn't really exist. I don't think I'd ever done so much running back and forth over the same ground on previous trips. Maps and a GPS sure help get you lost.

Or, until now, maybe the just kept me from getting where I wanted to be.

But that was about to change.

I finally found a beautiful, sun baked, rattle snake infested (they were on the road, mostly dead) canyon.

I need to look up the name, but I want to call it Burnt Canyon? Or Burnt River? Doesn't matter. As I was riding, I saw people still trying to find gold.

The sign did make me smile

They didn't lie. :)

The run out was good. Twisty pavement. Comfortable temperature. Well running bike.

Eventually even the fun runs have to lead to a gas station, even on a KLR.

I grabbed a twix and some coke. A standard fare while on a road trip. Chatted with folks a bit and decided to move on.

One of the finer things about travelling solo is the ability to do whatever the hell you want.

Like stop for giant chuck-waggons.

With a view of the prairie below

I pulled into Prairie city and decided I liked the look of the place. Small, old and with room at the hotel. I didn't have a bathroom in my room, but there was one across the hall. And it was clean. And the pub was 2 doors down.

And completely restored & updated.

The sitting area was particularly nice and I sent quite some time reading in the chairs by the window after dinner.

That concludes Day 5. If you get a chance, take the small roads. Stay in the one off places. You may find things you didn't even know you were looking for.

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