8 Ball In The Wind

Monday, June 16, 2014

Spring Opener 2014 pt 1

It has been a couple of weeks since my last blog posting.  I've been busy on a couple of fronts, so just haven't had the time to write anything that would have had any sort of coherent thought to it.  I've been getting ready to be without a job.  As well as trying to get Gypsy ready to make the 3 hour run up to Spring opener.  Friday was my last day on the job, and once I got home, we quickly loaded up and hit the road.

I had to replace the rear tire just a couple of days before we left because the weather cracking in the sidewalls was really making me nervous.  So I replaced the tire, but pinched the innertube I was using as insurance against the sidewall giving out.  I didn't have a valve stem to replace the stem from the now punctured tube.  So I had to find another.  Patrick gave me four of them.  There was a question as to whether they would seat properly since they were from a jeep, and not a Harley, but in a pinch you make do.  It worked, and the tire held air.  So I put it on Gypsy Monday and moved on to the next item on my list of  things 'To Do'.

After my last day of work for the year, we loaded up the bike and headed out.  Gypsy felt a bit squirrely in the corners on the 17 mile ride up to Elbe.  So I pulled into the rest area to check the rear tire.  The cotter pin was in place, but I hadn't bent it to keep it there.  I looked around real quick and grabbed a rock to beat it over with, and we hit the road.  I noticed the tire was a bit low, so I decided to put air in it when we hit Eatonville.  This was going to become a pain in the ass by the end of the weekend.  But more about that later.

We aired up the tire in Eatonville, grabbed a bite to eat, and topped off the tanks in Orting.  Then it was off to North Bend.  Still planning on making it to Spring opener before dark (although that was beginning to look sketchier by the minute). The weather was actually fairly good.  With patches of blue sky and warm sunshine between cloud banks.  At least until a couple miles outside of North Bend.  Then it got dark and gloomy, and we got hit with some severe cross winds trying to go down the freeway.  We topped off the tanks in North Bend and headed out into what looked like nasty weather up on the pass.  

I pulled over up on Snoqualmie Pass because the rain was coming down hard, and I wanted to put on some rain gear.  We called our friends, and were told the directions to camp.  Which made absolutely no sense.  But then when you are getting directions from someone who is hammered that is to be expected.  We headed on into the dark, with road construction having wiped out the lane markers, the water shooting up from the front tire (I don't run a front fender), and the handling going to shit from  the rear tire being low (AGAIN) we slowed down to about 55 and kept going.  The signs reading "Motorcycles Us EXTREME Caution" and "Grooved Pavement Ahead" kept me a bit tense.  But apparently they had paved over all the grooves, and about a half hour later we arrived at Spring Opener.

We rode around the site about 4 times, but couldn't see any sign of our group so I finally just said uck it, and set up the tent over in a corner for the night.  Tomorrow we would find everyone, and move camp over there (where ever that was).  I assumed everyone must have passed out or gone to sleep, because they weren't answering their phones.  Oh well, the journey continues...

Catch ya on the road sometime...

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