The Bumblebee and the Vespa 2014

I think it's time for me to redefine what this new blog is about. In the past I've posted individual blogs for motorcycle/motor scooter rides to places like Alaska, Nova Scotia, Key West, Mexico, Canada, New York, etc. That's all well and good but it seems nowadays I'm dividing my rides into shorter ones comprised of two or more weeks each on different bikes. The total time and mileage is about the same, it's just split into multiple rides with a break somewhere in the middle.

The summer of 2014 serves as a good example of that wherein I rode south to Tombstone, AZ on my '92 BMW R100GS Bumblebee/Ural sidecar rig, (phew!) then returned home for a few days and set out again on my '07 Vespa 250ie motor scooter to visit Canada. That summer has gone and the seasons have changed as will the reports, some will be about shorter rides, some will be about maintenance, and maybe on occasion I'll post a photo or two just for interest. I may even introduce other bikes, a few of which are lurking under cover in the barn...

Navigating this blog is easy, just scroll down the list of posts by date to whatever interests you, click on it and you're in. Photos can be viewed in larger format by clicking on them.

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Jul 16 - Day 14 2015 Tour - Boise, ID

Last night I told Linda that I'd point the Bumblebee towards Sunriver, OR where she and most of her kin are attending an annual Family Camp at the resort. Like Christmas and birthdays it comes around every single year and to date I've yet to attend one, probably not due to the best efforts on my part. This year I'd do better, catch the last day if I was within striking distance.

Photo not mine, I pinched it.
With that in mind I entered Sunriver, OR into my GPS and it found it, barely 400 miles away. I figured I could make it in two days, arriving late on Friday the 17th. Nice plan Sam but I didn't reckon on the route I'd be taking. Garmin & Co seemed to like following the Salmon river west and that meant a twisting low-speed turn every other minute or so.

Regular bikes like the Ninja or even the Vespa scooter eat up curves without even slowing down. Sidecar rigs on the other hand have to be played gently with lots of body English applied, particularly in right-hand corners. The net result of this means it took me half a day to make the first hundred miles and I was already feeling pooped.

I finally realized it would serve no purpose trying to hustle the Bumblebee along any faster than it wanted to go; to do so could easily result in something really dumb happening. Slow down you old fool, stop and take some pics and if you miss Family Camp it won't be the end of the world. So I did and I managed to shoot a few of places that looked interesting..

Idaho had hermits? Never heard about that before.

If I'm seeing right I can make out what look like caves towards the tops of the cliffs in the distance. Could also be a spot on the camera lens.
I was still following the Salmon river west when I cruised into (and immediately out of) Clayton, the smallest settlement I'd been to so far. I didn't think to see if they have a post office; it would have been cool to mail a post card with their cancellation on it.

Mankind is generally a burrowing species. Am I wrong?

Clayton today ain't what it used to be. Kinda like the Ol' Gray Mare. 
My route continued to follow the tourist trail west and eventually fell in alongside the Saw Tooth mountain range. The corners that slowed Bumblebee to a crawl continued to hinder riding speed. I stopped for a roadside lunch of a Cliff Bar and Gatorade; then I put on a jacket liner as the mountain shadows were cold.

Finally after a couple of hours the temps began to rise again so I stopped at the Emma Edwards point of interest to shuck the jacket liner and put on lighter gloves. I also ditched a couple of cars who were probably glad to get around me. I'd been riding as fast as I was comfortable with which understandably didn't suit some of the car people.

Nice water by Emma's site

The road finally evolved into what would be a normal 2-lane sans all the twisties and I was able to run at 65 mph for the rest of the day's ride. By the time I reached Boise I was hot and pooped so I decided to call it quits for the day. I found a close group of motels and La Quinta won the draw, mainly because I'd never stayed in one and it was close at hand.

It's a decent place but their prices are sky high which according to the front desk gal is because of the soccer games and rodeo going on through the week end. "All of the hotels are charging higher rates because of that" she said. Like that makes it OK, right? Phoee I sez...but I know she's not getting any of it, she just gets to catch whatever flak comes her way because of it. I gave her my warmest smile and a polite thenkuvermch and went to my room.
Double shower head - now that's decadent
There's a McDonald's close by so that took care of dinner. Today's mileage was a miserable 163.5.and I'm still 255 miles from Sunriver. Hopefully the roads will be less curvy so I can make decent time.


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