Thursday, October 3, 2013

Fall Colours tour Huntsville 2013

We did our yearly fall colours ride in Huntsville Ontario last weekend. Fantastic warm and dry weather. The best Autumn weather we ever experienced.
Here is a video clip of the riding. I apologize for the shaky quality of the video. Just focus on the nice colours of the trees.
If you enjoy it, subscribe to my YouTube video channel.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bvgtLPadhYQ




Tuesday, August 27, 2013

August 23 to 25 PA Trip

We went for a trip to Pennsylvania last weekend. We left after work and made our way to Allegany State park in NY. It was a 250km ride and a border crossing (that went surprisingly fast), but we still arrived after dark. Initially we were told that the camp ground is full, but they found one open site and was able to fit us in.




We had wine, crackers & mussels with us, so need to go look for food. Although it is still officially summer, we spend a cold night in the tent.
The next morning we had to go back to the main administration building to pay for our camp site. They let us in the previous night without paying (such trusting people). They also had a great breakfast restaurant that we made use of.



Beautiful administration building. And Denise has a field day taking pictures with her new DSLR.


 The plan for today was to make our way to Rickets Glen State Park in PA. It was about 550km away on some nice Pennsylvania twisties. The first 100km was not as exciting as we expected, but it was still a lot better that riding the Ontario grid. We had a stop for Denise to take some pictures, and for me to have a siggie. And then the road got a lot better, actually GREAT. This was real Pennsylvania twisting roads. Real foot peg dragging turns, if you know what I mean. The bottom and sides of my riding boots are carrying the scars of being scrapped on the road on the tight turns. Motorcycle heaven.





We took turns riding in front, and had a ball of a time. Denise saw a sign for a lookout point, and slammed on the breaks. Man, that woke me up.
Here are some pics at the lookout point.






We didn't stick to our original plan when we realized that we will get to our intended destination to late (after dark) We cut the last 100km of our route and started to look for a place to camp. We saw signs for Bald Eagle State Park and decided to check it out. The minute I saw it, I loved it. The landscape was dry, the grass was scorched brown and it was hot as hell. It reminded me of Africa, and I loved it.
We set up camp, and rode to a nearby town to get food. That night we feasted on tinned spaghetti and meat balls.





That night was cold again, but Denise used the space blanket from her first aid kit to keep her warm. The next morning we woke up to find the whole are covered in a beautiful mist. We went for a short hike round the park.


Here is a short video clip.

video

The plan for today was to take the Fastest route home. We have to be back at work tomorrow (I have not won the lottery yet). Set the GPS to take us home on the fastest route, and off we go. It was still misty and the scenery was breathtaking. We also had some nice twisty roads. Next the GPS tells us to make a right hand turn onto a dirt road. No problem, our bikes are made for this kind of terrain, and since we are following the FASTEST route this dirt road will just be a short section. WRONG.
The dirt road was in good condition and we had a blast.





After about 12km we stopped to take some pictures and have a look at how long we are going to stay on this road. The GPS said the next turn off is in 6km. After the 6km we got to the turn off, but the road was still dirt. We decided to continue, since we did not want to waist time turning around and retracing our steps. The road, if you can still call it a road, became worse and worse. Up hill and down hill at 30 degree angle. Tight switchbacks with big rocks. The road was covered in baby head size rock. Sheer cliff on the one side, and sheer drop off on the other side. Our speed dropped considerably and it became very technical riding. I guess that's why it's called adventure riding.
Denise, you can add a comment if you feel like it.
After being on this road (looked more like a goat track) for an hour, we reached asphalt again. Now my GPS started acting up. It showed us roads to turn on to, that did not exist. I reset the route to take us home, but at this point the GPS routing was completely fucked up. I had to reset (reboot) the GPS multiple times to get it working again.

From that point on home it was smooth sailing. Apart from sitting in line at the border for over an hour, the rest of the ride home was uneventful.

Friday, August 16, 2013

2013 BMW Motorrad Days Ontario

Last weekend (Aug 10 & 11) we went to BMW Motorrad Days at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
Click here for the video report.



Monday, August 5, 2013

Mt Washington Extended YouTube Video

This is my first try at video editing. Check it out, and if you like, subscribe to my YouTube channel to be notified of new uploads.
The plan is to make more use of videos in my blog updates.
You will see a watermark in the middle of the picture, that is because I am to cheap to buy software. I use the free trail version.
I hope you enjoy.


Sunday, July 21, 2013

2013 Go East Boy. July 11 - 14

The next morning we woke to torrential rain. Here is a video clip inside our tent, getting ready pack our stuff and hit the road.
video

We got dressed in the tent, including putting our rain suits on and helmets on. Then started packing things on the bike. As any camper would know, packing a wet tent is no fun. But, it still beats going to work.
As we were now heading West, we went thru Shediac again, and took the opportunity to take pictures of the BIG lobster.



After that we were on our way to spend the night in Fredericton NB. We wanted to stay in downtown Fredericton so we can experience the night life, and don't have to ride the bike after a few beers. We rode to the centre of town, and then we asked 2 cops where we could stay, and where the Happening Places are in Fredericton. They gave us good directions and info. We stayed in the Delta Fredericton. Walking distance to where we wanted to be. It was a great hotel, but a bit on the expensive side. Once at the hotel I had a shower, as there was starting to hang a sound around me. Had my afternoon siesta, and was ready to hit the town. Konstanz found a pub on-line where we could eat and have a few drinks, and they had a live band playing that night.
We walked to the pub round 6:00pm, and had great Fish & Chips with some beers. By 8:00pm we asked the waitress, what time the band starts playing. She said round 10:30pm. We decided to walk round town, check out the sites and that way kill some time till the band start playing. We covered the whole downtown area in about an hour, and then decided to go back to our hotel. Stuff this waiting for the band. Needless to say, by 11:00pm that night we were fast asleep. What a way to paint the town red!

The next morning we were off early (6:00am) to make our way to Mt Washington in New Hampshire. We new we had to get an early start, since the mountain was about 500km away. We crossed back into the US at St Croix Maine round 8:00am, and crossed the State of Maine in no time. We riched Mt Washington round 2:00 pm, and got in line to pay to go up the Auto Road.


There is a sign at the entrance that warns you not do go up the mountain it you have a fear of heights. We both are scared of heights, or more correctly, the fear of falling, we decided the sign was put up only for sissies. It is a 8 mile ride to the top, and it started out easy with not a very steep incline. But after 4 miles it changed dramatically, and to top it off, some of the road is not paved. Here is a video clip taken of the bike near the summit.



I did not really look at the scenery on the way up, I was just concentrating on the road. On the way down is was a lot easier and I was then able to look around a bit. I was never scared, I just paid close attention at the task at hand, keeping the bike on the road. That is my story, and I'm sticking to it. Konstanz also says he was not scared, but this was on the passenger seat when we reach the summit. 


But we both made it to the top, and the views were brilliant.





That night we made it to Moose Brook Motel in New Hampshire. Great Motel, with a pool. The next day was the start of the long trek home.







Thursday, July 18, 2013

2013 Go East boy. July 09 - 10.

The next morning we woke to a wonderful blue sky with no rain in sight. Since we only had a short distance planned for the day, it gave us time to spread out the wet tent in the sun so it could dry out from the last time we packed it in the rain. The plan for the day was to make our way past Saint John, the Fundy national forest and camp the night just before Hope Well Rocks.


On the way it was very hot so we stopped for some ice cream at a place that sells home made ice cream. Konstanz got his first taste of east coast hospitality. Very friendly people, and once they start talking, you can not get away.

We continued thru the Fundy National forest with great views of the Bay of Fundy.


At one point as we crested a little hill, I see this big black dog standing in the middle of the road. As we get a little closer, he turns and look at us. That's when we see it's not a dog but a black bear. I slam on the breaks, and drop down 2 gears. The bike is noisy, and I think that's what made him decide to run. Now the chase is on. As he started running down the road we set off after him. We chased him for about 100 meters and then he darted into the bushes.
This happened so fast that we did not get the opportunity to take pictures. You have to take my word on this one.

We made our way to Ponderosa Pines camp ground that afternoon. Bought some fish & chips at a non descript little roadside shack, and just relaxed the rest of the afternoon and evening.





The next morning we were off to go look at Hopewell Rocks. Click on the link to see the Wikipedia description of The Rocks.





Wile were walking around the ocean floor somebody asked us if we saw the moose. What moose? The one that just fell down the cliff. 

It fell down the cliff about 10 minutes before we go to that location. It broke it's neck and died on impact.
Here is Konstanz's version of the events.

video


Here is another video just showing the views from the ocean floor.

video



It was interesting to see that the ocean floor was red mud. I am used to sand and rocks at the ocean.



After spending about 2 hours exploring The Rocks, we were of to Cap-Pele on the coast of the Northumberland Strait. We went thru Moncton, and then Shediac to get to our Beach camping site.


It was a great location. Nice camp site, close to the beach, and close to town to go out for dinner. The water was not as cold as the water in the Bay of Fundy, so we actually had a chance to swim in the ocean.


The people we met at the camp site were very friendly. They were mostly Acadians (See Link) but their English was very good, so we were able to communicate.


It was a hot and sunny day, so we used every bit of shade that could be found.


That evening we went out for lobster. Since we were in lobster country we thought it would be right time to do so. We asked the camp ground owner/manager were we could find good lobster. She told us of some nice restaurants in the area that serve lobster, but it we only want lobster, and eat were the locals eat, we should go to the fish market. So off we went.




What a great experience. This is no fancy restaurant. You walk in, go to the fish counter, select your pre-cooked lobster and pay. $20 for 3 extra large lobsters. Then they attack the lobster with a meat cleaver, and break open the shell, so it's ready for you to eat. They put it on a polystyrene plate, you pick a table, and dig in.



Here is a picture of the aftermath. 3 lobsters and some beers later. 


What a great time. That night we had a good sleep with full bellies. Tomorrow is the day when our direction is turning West. The rest of the trip is going home.