Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Headed to Pendlton

Hello all,
Heading down into Pendleton, you can see the snow on the foot hills..
Again, it's still not quite riding season here lol
But that's ok!
Very excited to be on bike and striving for a goal:)

Headed for a parking lot lol
Oh and looky there! In the corner where people go in and out… PERFECT!

Have already talked to some very nice folks:)
Fellow riders! Nice to see the passion when people share their riding adventures:)

I have committed to hang out here for the evening.
Not having power will send me out of my comfort zone!
Solar is on my mind for sure! Will be taking a closer look into that very soon.
I do have a propane heater, getting cold should not be a challenge..

All part of the adventure :)



Chat soon!
Ken.

Monday, February 27, 2017

The "Parking lot" adventure!




Riding season here in Eastern Oregon is still a ways out:/
But i'm setting out anyways!
This is certain to be another “out of the box” adventure to say the least.

It's time to get some resources put together.
The last few years has been a long haul if ya know what I mean.
Worth every moment, but still a long haul.

I do have a number of “sponsors” just not time to introduce them..

So here is the out of box adventure!

The parking lot ride!

We have all seen the RV’s hanging out in Walmart parking lots right?
Its pretty well known I have spent many of nights in one!
There are other options, many of the “Box Stores” welcome RV overnighters as well.
AND when staying in a “Parking Lot” you're certain to meet lots of interesting people.

OK OK I know that sounds corny and NOT something a person would ever “set out” to do. But the reason will be understood here soon.

As you also know I towed my new Aspen Quality Trailer on the trip back to the Northwest.
Has given me a wonderful opportunity to put it thru its paces and have to say it's incredible:)

So finally the cool part!
Aspen Quality Trailers has given me the opportunity to show this incredible  product and take orders:)
It will generate resources for the rest of the stuff come together!
Believe me,  there plenty of stuff to get put together lol

So there it is!

The “Parking Lot” Adventure!!


Blasting out in the morning.
Chat soon
Ken:)








Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Still so ready! But..

Chomping at the bit waiting for the rain to let up. Pacing around the bike, lots of thoughts.
I tend to spend most of my time thinking about the future, however when “waiting” it's easy to think back on yesterday, last week or last month.
What got me thinking was my gloves lol

Riding gloves!
That particular set of gloves is ONLY for the handlebars lol
I won't even use them for hooking up the trailer!
The wear and tear is just from the grips:)
They have somewhere around 20 thousand miles on them, getting close for a new pair:)
My last pair flew off the bike somewhere in Oregon last summer/fall…
I normally carry several pair of gloves, each with its own use lol

Riding gloves. deerskin soft  and fit sooooo nice:)(above pic)

Cold weather riding gloves. Insulated and again soft leather.

Work gloves. Leather but like 7 bucks at Harbor freight lol great for changing out tires or dirty type stuff:)
Usually keep them in my tool bag and only take when pulling trailer.

Then a nice pair of leather mechanic style gloves, obviously for working on the bike:)
And usually the ones for hooking and unhooking the trailer.
I occasionally wear them when riding in the rain..
I do also carry heated gloves but not in the pic.

OCD? Nope
Fun stuff:)

Time to see if its still raining lol
Chat soon!

Ken
Cruisingwithken@gmail.com


















Soooo ready!!

Good morning:)

Sooooooo ready to jump on the bike and go!
The weather's not cooperating….
Obviously I could go regardless of the weather, it's just lots more fun when not dumping rain and 39 degrees!!




As you can see it's everywhere lol
Perhaps this afternoon I will just go for it!!

I get lots of calls and messages, its awesome to know so many people are out riding, all over the country:)
Send me your pics:)

Chat soon!

Ken
Cruisingwithken@gmail.com
















Saturday, February 18, 2017

Little wind:)

Hello all:)

Went for a ride:)
Packed up the gear and loaded the trailer! Bike pulled out of shop!
Perhaps will let the rain go away and the temps are supposed to rise a bit:)
Hmmmmm,,, the temps didn't rise and the rain is still here?
NO Way!!
Remember the crap I have just rode through not so many days ago?
Not prepared mentally for that.
However, mentally… I needed some wind in my grill.
Like the saying goes. “If you have to ask, you will never understand”
So unhooked the trailer and just enjoyed the ride:)
I needed that!

Chatting with my Buddy Dick H. This evening on phone, you all remember him…
We dont get to chat as much as we used to but always nice to catch up :)
Dick asked how many miles I have put on my current bike?
I wasn't actually sure?…. Out of curiosity turned the key on and dang!
It had 13,399 the day I picked it up… (in Nov)
You can do the math lol


Anyways,
Now that i'm packed, looking forward to getting on the road early tomorrow:)


Chat soon
Ken


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Next!

Well it's been quite an adventure!
Thousands of miles in cold, wind, rain and snow..
There is something about riding across this amazing Country!
Meeting incredible people, they all have their own story or adventures.
Some are quite incredible!
As you can imagine looking forward to being back on the road, should be the next few days or so... Naturally after being so far away Im looking for a Northwest Destination.
I have been looking at maps from the day I arrived!
It will be somewhere in this region.


Anyways,
Clean up took a bit, the last couple days on road created this mess!


Trailer and gear looks about the same.
But all cleaned up now:)


Also took the time to change the sound of the bike!!
Cleaned out the baffles, left the “Cats” for emissions and back pressure!
Sounds amazing!!
I'm ready..
Just looking for that place!
FYI,
Completely caught up on the blog.
Moving forward it will be the live updates:)

Chat soon,
Ken










Wow!

Well today is the day! I'm going home!

Off I go! It will be above freezing by the time I get to those places..
Well supposed to be anyways!


Packed, loaded and rain gear. The gloves are for wind only… I knew they were fine till i hit the Gorge.. then would be cold but was stopping to fuel up anyways..
Crap…The cold set in 10 miles sooner than I expected.
I was NOT stopping where I was to swap out gloves. Troutdale was the place I was stopping..
10 more miles..
Sooooo for the record… my hands have now been as cold as I can recall… ever!
Was happy to get off that bike in Troutdale.

Good time to sit and have a little something to eat…(to warm up)
After only about 30 min I was feeling great again:) the freezing dang fog lifted as well.
The roads are still very wet cause its kinda raining, but it looks as tho Im ok snow wise.
It was supposed to snow last night where im headed but have my fingers crossed it will only be water by time I get there lol

The next 100 miles was spooky!!
Snow on the roads from night before. But travel lanes were wet.. only a couple places I hit snow/ice in my lane… but was only patches:)
Sure had lots of looks as I passed traffic….
I was the only bike seen that day!
Anyways….
Made Biggs Junction without stopping was a huge mental boost!


Fuel and warming up!

One more splash of gas and home!

Made it!
Bike stuck, pulled the trailer in driveway by hand lol

Days ride to home, but can't get there!

Days ride from home.
But can't get there on a bike… well sure it could be done, but drawing the line..
Freezing rain.


Freezing rain is the one element that in my opinion that stops me on a bike.
Medford is about 300 miles South of Interstate 84 that follows the Columbia Gorge.
The weather in the “Willamette Valley” is mild in winter. Mid 50s and rain.
Once you hit the “Gorge” (Interstate 84) the rules change.
So today I will go North to the I-5/ I-84 interchange.
Which is between Salem and Portland..
Off I go:)

After only 160 miles or so i'm about done!
Pull over for the second time for fuel, it's time to get on the phone to figure out where i'm staying.
While on the phone I realize i'm the coldest I have been so far.. it was a wet cold.. the kind that gets you to the bone!

Phoenix Rv Park in Silverton OR (Salem)
That’s where i'm headed!
Right behind Safeway so know food and beverage is close!
Top notch park.


Was very happy to see the concrete and pavement on the roads and pads. Grass everywhere else:)
Soooooo important when it comes to keeping the mud out… remember it's raining!!!


After a quick trip to Safeway, getting everything dried out it's time to check tomorrow's weather… Yikes!!


Medford, OR (update)

Started this day in Lost Hills, CA.
Basically Bakersfield.
I fortunately received a call from Ken L. From Crescent City, CA. He is familiar with the best routes for riding in edgy weather. He is a committed rider and only lets “ice” stand in the way.
He mentioned I could go as far as Redding,Ca and still be ok if I needed to cross over to the coast the following morning.
So my Goal is Redding!
Off I go!
Peaceful riding thru California. Mostly flat, and LOTS of agriculture:)
The rain that was all over the forecast has been very forgiving so i'm counting my blessings:)
I'm in raingear but not completely necessary.. although it is warm lol the gear that is!
After reaching Redding I decide to go a little farther…
Then I get to the town of Yreka before I even realized it!
It is now straight up cold!!!
Very cold.
Im close to 4000 feet in elevation and snow is everywhere.

Im only 40 miles from Ashland, OR where it will be much warmer????
But have to cross the Pass???
Chatting with a local I decided to go for it!!

40 miles of spooky road conditions cold weather but rolled into Ashland:):):)
Now it's dark, don't feel like going even one more mile!!
So instantly get on the phone and headed for Holiday RV park in Phoenix, OR.
Only 9 miles, just shy of Medford, OR.




Great park, the facilities are as clean as I have ever seen! Very nice location and Joyce is a wonderful person! Always coffee and cookies waiting:)

Its way after dark and been a LONG day!  550 miles ish…


Lost Hills CA (update)

From Blythe, CA. to Lost Hills, CA.
Long day for sure!
When I took off from Blythe I headed North to Needles, CA. Figured it was a little out of the way, but would not have to deal with LA..
And had been told to avoid LA if possible lol
I did avoid it!
Was about 100 miles out of the way but no big deal, was a nice ride!
It also put my on Route 66 so im cool with that:)
In Fact picked up a plate for the trailer!


Crossing over on Interstate 40 then 395 from Barstow, CA to Bakersfield, CA was NOT a fun ride…
The wind was brutal!!
No matter I still made it:)
Called ahead to Lost Hills RV Park where Nicole hooked me up with a nice place to stay!




It had been raining and was going to continue to do so but that's ok.. I had gone over 400 miles in adverse conditions.. Time to get dried out and ready for tomorrow!

My concern about tomorrow is Sacramento and still not sure if I can get across Siskiou Pass.
May have to go to 101 and up the coast.
I will figure it out as I get closer:)

Blythe CA (update)

Great day for a ride!
Sunny, warm..
Heading up to Blythe CA.
Will be a fairly remote ride.


Had called ahead, Karen from the McIntyre RV Park has invited me to stay.
Very interesting park!
The winter weather is wonderful in Blythe, however being right on the Colorado River turns out the Mcintyre RV park attracts a summer crowd! Boaters!
There were a number of them at the park however overall it was considered the “slow time” of year.
These guys have quite the hobby!
The spot I chose was on “horsepower ally” glad I did!




Learned a lot about this incredible bunch of guys… “ Mcintyre Mob” go look them up on Facebook! You will quickly understand!
Great place!
Anyways, I have been watching the weather back home...
It looks like I can actually make it home??

The only choice is up Interstate 5 then across Interstate 84?
I have checked the weather, I can do it!!
Will be getting rained on after tomorrow, but have ridden thousands of miles in the rain! What's another thousand lol
Heading out in the morning!!

Btw,
Remember I had mentioned the Cucumber salad at the Van horn RV park?
It was so good I made some with dinner tonight:)

Yuma (update)



Heading out of Benson for a short day, only 270 miles or so to Yuma.
CoryAnn had mentioned how much she enjoyed the interstate 8 across the bottom of Arizona.
And strongly recommended I stop in Gila Bend for ice cream.
I didn't get any ice cream but for sure stopped to take a pic lol

Turns out the place is very popular, lots to see!

As I cruised along the rest of day, I realized how peaceful the ride was:)
70 degrees, no helmet, taking it all in:)
Lots of agriculture and irrigation, so much of the ride reminded me of being home..

I also knew I was heading for Southern Mesa RV Park.
Lou is a great person and fellow rider!
Looking forward to some warm temperatures.
Have plenty to do, Time to get in tune with the new trailer.
The trailer has a screen room and side awning, in these temps(approaching 90) shade is not a bad thing!
Oh, bike is due for oil change also, will be getting that done:)



Well I like, altho the direction of the sun is making me consider turning the entire thing around.

Ok, yes it was driving me crazy so turned it all around!
The view in front of the trailer:)

Heard about the Flea market in Yuma, nice!
Had a “CruisingWithKen” hat made!:)

Then I realize the printing is crooked… grrrr.. but too late i'm out!

Have actually been in Yuma now for several days.
I was looking forward to just kicking back for a bit, However!
It's not like me. I'm getting antsy
Being on the bike going somewhere, doing something keeps my brain straight.
So after 3 days i'm ready to head North.
thinking Blythe CA.
The weather is good. Looks like a nice ride!

Donna has made biscuits and gravy for the park, so after having a wonderful breakfast I departed. Great job breakfast Donna:) it was awesome!








Thursday, February 9, 2017

Feb 9th 1;03 AM

Good morning:)


I was woke by the crazy wind!
I have a framing kit for floor of tent portion of my trailer. Only necessary when on hard surface and not possible to stake down.
Well im in a beautiful park on concrete pad. So grateful! With the pouring rain its perfect:)
But again, didnt use my framing kit.. it was dead calm when I stopped.
Cooler full of beer in one corner.. several bags I remove from the bike in another corner.
Chair in one and table in other:)
Its not going anywhere but makes a little ruckus!!

Anyways….
Feels like a good time to catch up!
Yesterday was not a long day. Only 230 if I recall, BUT! The only day where being cold and soaked!
Stopped me physically.  I was done!
Regardless of physical, ice on Interstate 84 is still a challenge.
Freezing rain an hour up the road.… yikes.
I plan on leaving around 10:AM.  8 and half ours from now lol so will be 11 or so before I get to it.. supposed to warm above freezing so should be fine:)




Went out to smoke and inspect a few minutes ago, actually feels nice.. its 56..
Certainly not the 80+ like in Yuma lol
What a wonderful experience! Soooo comfortable.

Wait.. im done for now. I tired…
Im going to get some more sleep….

Chat soon
Ken:)

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Real time updates!

Good morning:)

Its 6:AM and I have been awake for a couple hours.
Looking at weather forecast, mapping stuff, where i'm at, where i'm going and if the map and weather will actually get along for a day or so??
Up till now i have considered myself VERY lucky with the weather:)

Now not so much, plan today was to ride from my current location in Ashland OR to Eastern OR.
Freezing Rain and snow on Interstate 84 Keeps me in the !-5 corridor will be stopping somewhere between Ashland and Troutdale this afternoon/evening..

So being 6 in the morning its to early to get on the road so the very next thing blazing thru my thoughts is how far behind the blog is!
According to the blog im in still in Texas! Or wait?....  No Arizona!
Now going back from memory is very challenging… soooooo many incredible moments!  yet hard to get across after the fact..
So here it is! real time moving forward,, I will catch you up along the way:)
Sitting here writing this post lol



Oh and I know, the place is a mess, gloves and gear piled..
Yesterday was a very long day!
Arrived after dark, and just had crossed Siskiyou Pass… In February!
Anyways this was miles and map of yesterday:)




Outside for a smoke and realize its getting light out. So quick selfie and Time to get packed up:)






I will get us all up to speed this evening now that I have committed to this new way of posting!


Chat soon
Ken






Sunday, February 5, 2017

Arizona today!



Good morning:)
Today will feel like entering my own back yard. Arizona has been a huge goal.
I suppose its just that much closer to home:)
This evening will be awesome. Was invited back to the Pardners RV park in Benson AZ.
Troy and CoryAnn are smoking a Spiral cut ham and will be ready this evening!
I still have 400 miles of throttle time. Parts of which im NOT looking forward to...So best get it happening!


El Paso TX.
When passing thru El Paso heading East I was stuck in the worse traffic jam of all the trip.. Well Dallas TX perhaps a the same?
But none the less was certainly not looking forward to it.
As it turns out it wasn't as bad this time. However the sense of relief was absolutely apparent:) Bout the time I hit Las Cruces NM Is when I really started enjoying the ride again!
Now its throttle on to Benson!
Looking forward to a chop(beer), smoked ham and awesome conversation with awesome people!
As I pulled in I could smell the smoker!




Troy gave me a hand getting situated, which I knew would be important to do soon..
I was beat! I knew the chops would go down quickly, and after nice dinner, would not be long till I was crashed out!
Sure enough.
Smoked ham, spaghetti squash with butter and Brown sugar. Garlic mashed potatoes..
Wasn't sure bout the squash, but it was awesome!


Thank you so very much Troy and CoryAnn:)






My day Kerville to Vanhorn



Today i'm up and at it!
But holy crap building a fire! Is cold!
This is just an example..





But not letting it stop me! Bike is now wired for heated gear so i think it will be ok:)
I did let the sun burn off the frost before departing tho:)
Well as I shared its a 375 mile day, not bad, it's all bout staying on the road!
Any time that engine stops its burning daylight. So again, Throttle on!!


I have called ahead to the Van Horn RV Park, top rated in Van Horn..
I always call the top rated.. don't always mean more $$ it just means they are top rated:) When your this far from home, knowing where i'm staying is HUGE…


Ok, off I go:)


That felt like a very long ways! Keep in mind its 900 miles across Texas, the mile markers are getting smaller:) I was pretty stoked when I went by the Interstate 20 intersection. (Familiar Hwy)
After being on such a long journey, going many places having no idea what to expect.
Simple things like pulling over for gas. Have I pulled off in a place I should not be?
Ya always have to remember. Bike VS a vehicle the element of exposure is much more significant.
Now the thrill of doing so, looking around each corner to see the next stretch of road, sometimes incredible rolling hills, or desert flat. Perhaps tornadoes, rain and wind. Meeting genuine people across this glorious country.
Its the most amazing way to live.:)


But…


I miss home..


Mother Nature has a little say in just how quickly this can happen.. We have been duking it out  all winter!!


Sorry got a little sidelined.


The Van Horn RV park:)
As I pulled in there were several travelers from the Kerville KOA headed the same direction as myself.
Clearly a good place to stop lol
Turns out it was:)
Corky got me all hooked up, very knowledgeable about surrounding cool facts:)
Thank you CorkY:)


One stop shopping as well.
After my share of Chops,grateful of having a safe comfortable home for the evening.
I had dinner at the little cafe. It right on site and amazing food!
The cucumber salad was incredible:)


Still long day tho lol
Chat soon
Ken!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Last day in Kerrville




Good morning,
Decided to sleep in a bit today, mostly because its soooooo cold in the morning.
Makes it challenging to get out of bed lol
Anyways,
Today is the last day of waiting out the weather.
Not much on my list to do other than laundry and seeing Fred off..
He is heading back to Kansas City for a bit.
We had a cup of coffee and he was on the road.

So now my day??
Hmmmm…
I have zero desire to go anywhere!
Food?
The KOA here in Kerrville has an amazing store!
I was able to acquire everything needed, as to not even start the bike:)
Sandwiches was my the plan lol

Now, there is lots going on in my mind, getting ready to cross the “long” and not much out there part of Texas..
My goal is Yuma. Its just over a 1000 miles. I like 250 per day and can be accomplished the way the towns are spaced out…
For example:
Fort stockton 250
El Paso another 250
Benson another 250
Yuma 280 ish.
Here is what im not a fan of…. I have no desire to stay in El Paso..
Soooooo. New plan!!
UIKEYINPUTDOWNARROW



I'm going to go 375 the first day to Van Horn TX..
That's the plan, for tomorrow!


Getting ready to do my laundry and Richard had heard what my food plan was for the day lol
He stopped by and ask if I would join him for dinner?? He said he would take me to the best food in town!
Sounded great to me!
Finished up my laundry, he picked me up and to town we went!
We arrived at “Billy Gene’s” you could tell the food was going to be awesome because we had to wait for just a bit..
Absolutely worth the wait! Incredible service, and the most amazing Steak in “Texas” !
Thank you again Richard, you're an incredible host :)


There is so much to share about my stay in Kerrville, it was a wonderful.
I'm a little disappointed I didn't get out and ride while in Kerrville.
Truly a mecca for for riding… will be getting back that way for sure:)


Well turning in early. Tomorrow will be a long day!






Wednesday, February 1, 2017

kerville day two..








Dang,
Again you would think I would be set for the cold!
It is what it is lol
Kinda weird not waking up and taking off.
Started the day with Cup of coffee. Like I say Fred is set up!
Has a hot plate rather than propane for heating water..
I seriously thinking bout changing over.

Its a bit chilly this morning but we are determined to go for a ride..
So we are heading into Bourne TX, bout 45 miles(ish) to the Harley Dealer, and then also the Indian Dealer!

Holy crap! I was ready to head back after the first 10 miles! It was so cold and stiff crosswind.
Then Fred is busting along at 90 against it lol
It worked out..
Harley Dealer was closest!


Harley pic


Then we both notice the Huge Indian dealer so off we go.. its actually like a mile away:)


I found a thing of Beauty!
What ya think?!?!






So back to Kerrville we go!
Took the first exit that put us thru the middle of town, just wanting to check it out.
Well found a Chinness buttet!
Been craving one for days!!
Tummy full its back to camp.


Now I know Im soon to be crossing some elevation and going to get colder.
Figure its about time to get the bike wired uo for heated gear.
And have never added a power point to charge phone and Ipad.
So thats the plan!
Done!

Pic of bike.


That all went well and now feel more confident if it really gets bad:)
Fred and I had a few berverages around a great fire and called it a night..