Due to an all-night rendezvous the night of the Born Free Show, my boy Charlie and I didn't make it up to get to the meeting point for the BiltWell 500 at 9a.m. So, we slept in and got on the bikes that next afternoon and planned not to have a plan. As soon as we got on the bikes to leave Long Beach, problems started occurring. Charlie's pipes were torn up by his engine/exhaust ports. Charlie had pipe-wrap on his exhaust, which in my mind, is the whole reason this happened as well as why he never noticed until shit hit the fan. Luckily, Brawny(Sinner) had some pipes and hooked us up. In addition, Dustin(Sinner) also helped us out by letting us use his garage and tools there in Long Beach. These guys helped us out a ton, I'm just glad they were so generous and that we noticed the problem before we hit the desert. Thanks again guys, both for the hospitality and the help. We got his pipe issue fixed up and hit Huntington Beach for the night to get loaded and eat some good food.
The next day, monday, we hit the road to make to the long route back, through Arizona,then Utah and Colorado. By the time we hit Kingman, AZ shit started failing again. Charlie's bike took a shit on Route 66 outside of Kingman. We putted/pushed his bike back to the Harley dealer in town, who helped us out, set Charlie up with some new regulator wires, and got us back on the road. I had never had a better experience at a Dealership before. We got back on the road and made it to Williams, AZ(about 100 miles down the road) where we noticed Harley didn't completely fix the problem, Charlie's battery wasn't holding a charge. So this cool Bike Shop right off of the highway called ahead to Flagstaff and got a shop there to wait around until we got there. We tore over to Flagstaff and the guys at Rick's Cycle fixed Charlie up completely(new stator, as well as regulator and wires). By the time they finished working on his bike the sun was going down and all I wanted to do was get back on the road. We rode up to the Grand Canyon in the dark and camped for the night outside of the Park off of a dirt road(a park ranger stopped me as I pulled into the park and it didn't seem like we were welcome there - but he did tell me where we could camp for free).
The next day we woke up around 7a.m. and got on the road. No problems the whole day. Charlie and I did roughly 700 miles that day, hitting the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, Garden of the Gods, and Moab to name a few. We hit the heat as well as some wicked sand-storms and 40 mph winds, but the route we took was well worth every bit of it. We rode over Vail Pass around midnight, freezing our asses off, but we made it back in one piece - even though my ass felt like it had been beaten into 10 different pieces from riding my rigid.
This trip from start to finish was a roller-coaster, mostly ups, but a couple downs. Mexico would have been fun, but Charlie's bike breaking down 100 miles south of the border would have been horrible. In all, we had a blast - met some new people, partied with friends, and learned a little about each-other and ourselves in the process. Now, I'm getting ready for a ride through Colorado and then it's off to Sturgis for two weeks. If you're heading to the Hills, enjoy, and I'll possibly see you there.....
And if you didn't make it to the Born Free Show, make sure to plan on it next year - and ride your damn motorcycle.
Check the flag, crazy winds - at our backs for the most-part.
You can see the sand whipping around in this photo if you look closely(on the right)...
- HAPPY 4TH OF JULY -
3 weeks ago