California road trip day 2

After the rain of day one it was great to finally hit the sunshine. Roadtrip’s are an awful lot easier in the sun.

Day two starts and it’s once again looking like rain so on with the waterproofs before hitting I5 for the days ride to Redding, CA. A lunchtime stop had to be programmed in for the Euro quarter final between England and Italy, and Grants Pass seemed a reasonable target. On the road at 8.15 am and there’s little traffic, something that didn’t go un-noticed by Elliot who decided to investigate both straight line and on the curve performance of his bike. I have no idea of the final speed he achieved, however, making use of our comms, my advice was “Okay, you’ve got your ton-up, now think about the Highway Patrol cars we’ve seen.” The fast disappearing blob became a bike again.

After a fuel and stretch stop we arrived at Grants Pass in time for the game. The quickest solution was a coffee shop with WiFi, and after some nervous moments trying to find a decent stream we settled back to enjoy the somewhat obvious rearguard action followed by penalties failure. Our mood was lightened by the fact that the weather was improving and it was time to consign the waterproofs to the tank bag. The pants and overboots would not be seeing the light of day until again for some time.

Back on the road, past Medford and into mountains and up to a height of 4350 ft, quite a climb. We were finally nearing California. On the way down it was time to if not panic, then get slightly uncomfortable on the saddle. The reason for the squirming? My low fuel light had come on and I had no idea how far it was to a gas station. We were truly in the middle of nowhere. Deep breath and ride on.

One of the weird things one comes across in the US is the state border. The transition between Oregon and California was marked by a border post complete with guards asking if any fruit was on board. Although I’d normally see this as an unnecessary inconvenience,

I had a chance to ask how far the next gas station was. A mile and a half to go. Phew, I knew I’d make it.

The sun was now very evident. After the rain of day one it was great to finally hit the sunshine. Roadtrip’s are an awful lot easier in the sun. Come the first vista point it was time to stop, break out the camera and soak up the Vit D.

The final part of day 2 will be remembered for the high winds which sapped energy and enthusiasm. Another long day on the Ducati. Tired but not that achy. A meal stop was followed by finding the motel. Day over, we were in California. A great sense of achievement filled both Elliot and myself, and we’d only really just started this adventure.

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