Jun 30, 2010

June 30th, 2010 (for real) Logan, to Green River, Wyoming

Got up at 8:00 ate a big free breakfast at the "Holy" Super 8 in Logan, then crashed back to sleep, dreaming of Hindu goddesses, and remembering things I still needed to do. ReAwoke at 9:30 then processed to intellegenly begin to pack the bike's saddlebags (both really need to weigh the same), then pack the tail pack which includes my computer, meds, and things that can;t take 110 degree heat which will cook things in my saddlebags, due to the heat enimating from my tail pipes.

11PM: Left the holy place, stopped at the school to feed my fish, met with my Dean of students, who was painting my room, and we bantered about a bit of next year student strategies. Held me up for an hour, then I checked my mail, and went to repay my son Logan for a hundred dollar loan. Logan was doing fine in his new place, and I took off like a bat from hell up Logan Canyon! Wasn't happy with the handling of the bike, and didn't feel confident in the twisty roads while going over the cache mountains, In fact, I was scared shitless much of the time, but I have an unNatural fear of hightes, cliffs, and things like that.
Don't know why, but it is real. I faced this fear and drove 30 miles through the bastard mountains, before descending down into the Bear lake area. After that, all was flat, like I am used to, being from Texas. It was funny: A group of elderly BMW riders, passed me going up the mountains, then I joined them in a big rest area overlook, but was to ashamed to talk to them. I hurried up and left down the other side doing 40 mph and they re-passed me going down to Bear Lake. Fortunately, they went left to Idaho, and I went right to Wyoming! Glad not to have to explain my phobia, to such accomplished veteran long distance riders.

Stopped at the south end of Bear Lake to grab a beer, to lessen the coffee in me, and get some much needed sun screen for my bare shoulders. Distance from Logan: 50 miles only. The 50 miles took me nearly two hours, due to my phobias, and my stopping to stretch my legs, which are two long for this bike. This bike feels unbalanced or something. Me thinks, that their is way to much weight on the tail end of this bike. I really miss my CB900 Custom right now. It is a low and heavy piece of metal, with a very nice automatic air suspension. This bike feels overloaded, and fishy, I will figure this issue out in the near future.

Drove out of the lake area and headed to "Kemmerer" Wyoming, after many miles of dry Wyoming sagebrush desert, with a bunch of smaller windy hills, so the road is curvey but not too scary for me. The winds are a bit unpredictable, and there is a
high number of mining trucks, all of which prefer to go 90 MPH, while I am doing 60 due to the winds affect on my sail-like windshield.

So, after 3 hours of stopping and driving slow, I finally made "Kemmerer", Since it was around 4 PM, I opted to eat a subway sandwich, and buy a map, since I had little idea where "Kemmerer" was! Yes, my cell phone has a "Google" Map, and GPS system, but "Kemmerer"? It say "Me savvy no signal", which really isn't the same as a map is it! I really thought that paper maps, were obsolete for me. Hahaha, So by a real map, I was barely past the border of northern utah, and barely into the south western corner of Wyoming. Nice. All that shit for little map progress! But I AM NO LONGER IN UTAH! AND I FACED MY DEEP FEAR OF DRIVING ALL THE WAY THROUGH THE MOUNTAINS TO GET THERE! All my Logan friends consider this an easy thing to do. Sorry, this easy thing was tough for me. I don't mind cliffs at a slow dirtbike speed, or to walk near them. But driving 50 mph, along one is not for me. Nuff said!

So the extremely cute Wyoming chick at Subway clinically made me a nice sandwich, and the not so cute (she was nearly my age) chick who sold me the map could flirt the chrome off a trailer hitch (yes, I heard the nasty version of that analogy), and I
managed to hang out there in "Kemmerer" for quite some time. My legs were locking up due to the proximity of the seat to the foot pegs. And I needed some solid food, since I ate last in the early morning, and that wasn't made of MEAT!

Remember those sandpiles we would play in as kids? Where we would scoop out gullies, and ditches, then try to plant the occasional sprig of grass, or substitute using dead twigs and chit like that? Try building a little town in the middle of the deepest depression of that, add a Subway/gas station, and few cheap motels, houses, other assorted buildings and Viola! KEMMERER! They built the town down low out of the wind. From a distance, you couldn't tell it existed. Many of the buildings and streets were "oil company funded" brand new. I actually liked the little town, but a bit small for my tastes. The next town however, I will retire to at some point..

Leaving Kemmerer, the sky looked like a brownish BLACK curtain 2/3rds to the direction I was going. Two miles down the highway, I caught a small shower of giant cold rain drops, which bespeckled my sunglasses, which are all the eye protection I
have with me! (I really need some ski goggles, as I am wearing a semi openfaced dirt bike helmet. Then the winds got crazy. Couldn't predict where the would hit, but they were yanking my 1000cc bike all over the road like an evil kid with a play toy. I slowed down to 50 Miles per hour. I had more control of the bike, but the veritable plethora of big fucking, double tractor trailer trucks, were running me down every couple minutes! I am beginning to think of Wyoming, as a big giant mining pit, that Dick Cheney plays in, like a little kid, while sticks the valuable ore in the pockets of his shorts, so as to put a few more coins in his piggy bank... LOL! (the mind starts to wander in scary assed positions such as this one.) So then the torrential rains start to smash into me, as I duck my head behind the opaque windshield, and dropping the speed to 40, while more violent trucks attempt to run me off the road, in order to get their contents to their happy place, without a minute to spare.

The wind was even more violent, and goody! Lightning was crashing all around, while I blindly tried to out run this strange storm and avoid the trucks from smashing me into a pancake. This hell lasted for nearly an hour.

The sky finally broke a little, then I was driving in the bright sunshine, with a buttload of rain still smacking into me, but since the winds abated, the only thing I had to watch for was the copious amount of TRUCKS! Most trucks showed some respect, but one or two literally drove me into the should, covered me with their wash, which blinded me for a few seconds, and really pissed me off! One in particular, I wish I could meet again.....

So now I'm happy, driving though the water on the road with my new tires, confident that I wont hydroplane, and now the rain stopped, the winds quit, and I am back up to 65 miles per hour, with little worry in the world. At 65 trucks will still need to pass, but not nearly as often as when one is going 40. After the 15 minutes of relief after a few hours of total fear and hell, I started to enjoy the trip (although Kemmerer was a fun stop), then I got to Interstate 80, which Eisenhauer planned back in the late 50's as part of the "Super Highway System", and is a much nicer road, than the little assbag trails that I came from.
I was able to wind the bitch up too 75 MPH for the first time in my short journey. I have gone 75 many, many times in my years of biking, but this bike doesn't feel right. Yes, it was still a little windy, but the bike doesn't feel stable or something. So I laid my big belly on the tank, in order to counter balance the 70 pounds of cargo, in the back, and the bike felt far more stable. This bike, is one that the rider is required to lay on the gas tank, in what is commonly referred to as the "crotch rocket" style. Only problem with crotching it for long is the 8 inch risers, someone put on the handle bars, in order to sit straight up! Well... Sitting straight up, with a bunch of luggage in the back, makes for an unstable ride. I bet the thing would go into a "death wobble" or something, if I went beyond 100 mph. Next time I drive it, I will load, 35 more pounds, on the tank area, and off the tail, which will help immensely. I also plan to buy the goggles, remove the dirt bike visor (it occilates up and down, which annoys the shit out of me), and a tank bag to put my heavy objects in, like my camera and computer and stuff. I might even get a front fender pack in order to balance her. I also need to find a bike shop who can add a few more pounds of air to the front suspension. All this should make for a much better ride. Motorcycle riding does take a few adjustments in order to keep things pleasant and safe.

Got to the beautiful city of Green River Wyoming, after 30 more miles on the highway (by Ike). Nice drive mostly, but still getting passed while doing 70. But now they have a lane to pass in, and nothing coming from the other direction. Super Highways are far safer than farm roads, or smaller highways. Its a fact that most road deaths are on secondary, non urban roads. People just drive too fast for these roads. My kids and I used to see at least one or two burning flipped over cars and trucks, on our 20 miles commute to school back in the old days, deaths were usually involved, Oh well. Now we know how the general public views death. I take life seriously. Life is a gift afterall. I will risk my life if I have to. But I don't enjoy it, and generally take the safest route possible. Looks like Super Highways will bring me back to Texas.

God I love this city! Green River Wyoming. It has a certain ancient Atlantic seaboard since of architecture to the downtown area, mixed with the clean, new money look and the secondary tourist trap thing going on. Hard to describe overall, but it
is nice, clean, friendly, and has 12 bars in a town of 11000 people. This doesnt include restaurants with bars.
Logan utah, for example has 3 bars and 55000 people. Guess which city I prefer? Ok, enough of that, and you folks know by now that I do love the Mormons, and teaching their kids. But Logan Utah, ain't no Green River, and never will be! I went to the "single feather" bar tonite, which I walked to from my stately $35 dollar a nite hotel, had three beers and a bowl of smokin red hot pork rinds...... the fare was only $7.00. Three Pints of draft beer. Sheesh!

I found a clean comfortable room with internet for only $35 called the "Flaming Gorge", tomorrow I plan to view the actual "Flaming Gorge" and possible do some sailing or kayaking. Heck, this is my vacation and I know I won't see a nicer place than this town, so I might just spend a few days here, Once I get to Nebraska, I will do those 400 mile days. But not here in Green River. This place also has a huge county library, a big museum, a first class central park, a working old time train station, need I say more? I only explored the area for 30 minutes or so, and haven't seen the river or the newer part of the city. But I put this first on my list of retirement places. Although, I don't plan to retire for at least another couple decades.

My Virgin mobile phone doesn't get service here, but I still choose to give my hard earned money to a space pioneer like Richard Branson, than the corporate money gluttons that run ATT. I did get to contact Mom and another friend with the free WIFI at this excellent motel. Unfortunately I will have to walk a couple blocks for brekkies, at the "Crazy Moose" restaurant, which is part of the "single feather" bar. The bartender told me of the other good bars, and I told him, that I don't slut around
and cheat once I found a bar i approve of. More on this wonderful city tomorrow. There is rumored to be an even more wonderful city 18 miles down the highway called "Rock Springs", although its a college town, I doubt it can compare to Green River. But I might have a gander.