Gustavo and Machog Chase the Snake with the Wet Leather Gang! - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-21-2009, 05:23 PM Thread Starter
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Gustavo and Machog Chase the Snake with the Wet Leather Gang!

Gustavo & Machog hooked up in Prosser WA, to drive over to Pullman WA to chase the snake (some very twisty empty roads in WA, OR and ID.

Soggy Machog


Our hosts, John & Chris farm house.


Red V's in front of red barns.


Gustavo admiring MY bike.


Our hotel-I use the word loosely!


Rare 3rd arm shot by Machog of Gustavo.


This 3rd arm stuff is cool.


Handsome man in a helmet.


3rd arm over the shoulder.


Just to prove it was Machog and NOT Gustavo with the 3rd arm!


G man and our riding buddies for the day.


Are there no straight roads round here?


G man snapping the countryside.


Best milk shakes in the free world.


Boggans Oasis.


Still can't find any straight roads.


Girls requested we take a shot of them next to this important phallic symbol.


OK' that's it. Thanks to Gustavo for a great weekend and connecting me with with the Wet Leather gang, a real blast. Tx also to John & Chris for their excellent hospitality.

I'm posting these before Gustavo posts his, so you won't need to look at his superior photographic images.

Machog


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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-21-2009, 05:40 PM
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Great review and pictures.


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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-21-2009, 08:03 PM
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Looks great, can't wait to be able to go on a weekend or longer trip. I wish it would stop raining.

Moon Dust Gray Versys, with lots of farkles.

Vlast

P.S. I bought my Versys to support my photography hobby.


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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-21-2009, 08:04 PM
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What beautiful country! thanks for the pics
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-21-2009, 08:21 PM
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Yep!! Great pics!



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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-22-2009, 09:26 AM
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The REAL report

You invite a guy to go on a ride and he hurries back home to post a report and pictures before you do...

Never mind, I have a lot more pictures to post...

Chase the Snake started as a riding event in which you had to go as many times across the river without back-tracking on any single bridge or dam in one day. It served as an excuse to go explore the roads in the SE corner of Washington state, but was made obsolete by the excessive "security" measures after 9/11, since all the dams were close to civilian traffic. Anyway, there is no shortage of good roads in this corner of the world, so crossing or not crossing the dams was not going to stop us from coming every year again.

If there is one thing that CtS is guaranteed to bring it's rain. I have yet to go on a CtS ride (any time between the end of May to the end of June) during which it was dry the whole weekend. Seattle had a record drought that was broken on Friday, when it was time to leave for CtS...

Time to leave the house. Note the wet pavement...


It was busy on Hwy 26 going across town:



I met my friend Hanna on the east side of Portland, and we headed to Prosser, where we were going to hook up with Mac.


And it was still raining in the Gorge...


Finally, some blue patches in the eastern Gorge.



Crossing the Columbia:




Hanna:


Rock Creek canyon - this is where the fun really begins...







Hanna on the road to Bickelton:





Yours truly:


Google maps said it would take 4:10 from Portland to Prosser. I told Mac we'd be there at about 1PM. Somehow we got there in 3 hours... We were starving, so we ordered before mac arrived (he got there early, so not a lot earlier than he did). We had a quick lunch and were on our way to Colfax.

Now I had two red Kaws in tow:




On John's suggestion, we took the Pasco-Kahlotus route. This is before it started pouring...


Gustavo


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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-22-2009, 09:27 AM
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We stopped to get our rain gear organized in Kahlotus, where we ran into a group of friends headed to Pullman. We rode with them down WA-261 across the Snake for the first time on this ride:


Can't get rid of that red Versys:


And a second crossing. Yes, it's raining...


I love these rolling hills of the Palouse:


Finally, we made it to Chris and John's farm:


As usual, Chris had a pretty good dinner ready for the weary travelers. After dinner, we headed to Pullman, to meet the rest of the gang at the hotel.

More later,

Gustavo


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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-22-2009, 04:07 PM
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Nice ride and great pics.
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-22-2009, 08:31 PM
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Every Chase the Snake starts with a good breakfast at the Old European. For some reason, they didn't prepare well this time, and only had one waitress for our section (they have done well every year previously, so not sure what happened). Breakfast choices are interesting, and the food typically very good.

Part of our breakfast crew:


After that the large group splits into smaller ones and they go in different direction to explore the area. Today we had a small 4 bike group - Mac, Andrea, Hanna and myself.

Heading out of Pullman, the fun starts as soon as you cross US-197:


Just in case you forgot what I was riding...


Mac, Andrea and a distant Hanna riding along the Snake





Dueling photogs


Taking a break by the river


Mine is the red one


The bare mountains rising from the river make a pretty contrast to the lush green hills of the Palouse


After running along the Snake River for a while, we headed south to explore the Rattlesnake grade.

This has to be one of my favorite roads. As mac puts it, can't they make any straight roads around here? No.


This is where his picture of the grade came from...


The following is a sequence I took chasing Mac who was chasing Andrea down the grade:












More later,

Gustavo


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Last edited by Gustavo; 06-23-2009 at 12:08 AM.
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-22-2009, 09:23 PM
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i see alot of red X's guess thoses are the R rated pictures

08 Versys (Red)
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post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 12:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecreeper77 View Post
i see alot of red X's guess thoses are the R rated pictures
Not sure why, it all shows up on my screen...

Gustavo


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post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 07:07 AM
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Thanks! Great pics and ride report. Looks like a great area to ride!

Steve

I bought a motorcycle because my wife said that I couldn't! Now I have two and she still says I can't have another one!
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Sounds like a challenge to me!

Now I have four!
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post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 09:00 AM
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Man great report guys!!! wish we had twisties in Iowa!

if it were easy....everyone would do it!
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post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 10:11 AM
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Great stuff!

Terrific report! Man, that's some beautiful country, wet or dry. I love the shots from above the twisty canyon.
How am I ever gonna get my lawn mowed with stuff like this to look at?


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Don't you think that it's a ^%#$&# shame that Hunter S. Thompson wasn't an adventure rider? Imagine the ride reports...!
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post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 12:20 PM
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couple of goats man...no mowing needed!

if it were easy....everyone would do it!
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post #16 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 08:06 PM
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nice shot's guys!
both of you never fail to impress!


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post #17 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 10:02 PM
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The Oregon side of the Rattlesnake isn't in as good a shape this year, not so much due to pavement quality, more due to the amount of debris you find on the road.

But, as you can see here, it's still a very, very nice ride:




Going back down to the river:




Most of the debris are small size gravel, dragged on the road by truck towed trailers that cut the sharp corners of the Oregon side. Makes you stay on your toes when picking a line:


Back into Washington:


As Mac said - world's best milkshakes:



The great metropolis of Anatone:





Gustavo


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post #18 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-23-2009, 10:18 PM
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From the Rattlesnake to the Spiral Highway, if there are two grades that define this area it's those two. You can make a nice 200 mile loop of nothing but fantastic roads, both for riding quality and for breathtaking scenery.

Here are Andrea and Mac at teh top of Lewiston Hill:


A bit of history:






A small section of the road:



I typically run up and down the Spiral Hwy until I get it "right". Unfortunately, my riding buddies got tired after a couple of runs, so I only got three runs this time. I was hoping I'd get at least one more on Sunday morning...

Back in Pullman, the WL crew was in full party mode. I'm always surprised they welcome us back year after year here. Nice people...




That was the before party. Then there's the BBQ and the requisite after party. But, responsible riders don't drink and drive, so a large number of them showed up at the farm in a Taxi.



Partial lineup at the Thompson's:


Did I mention I love the Palouse?





Gooz and Mac making new friends:



Everybody was anxiously watching the weather. The forecast was very iffy, but looked it would be much worse later in the afternoon. Many of us decided to skip the traditional Sunday breakfast and start making our way home early. It is a long haul for most of us...

Gustavo


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post #19 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-25-2009, 12:44 AM
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I have yet to see a profession in which you can get it so wrong, so many times and still be in business (well, maybe except being a pundit on TV... ). The weather forecast said cloudy in the morning with increasing chances of rain later in the day. Yeah, they increased alright, to 100% at 8 AM... So we decided to skip breakfast with the rest of the crew and start heading home early, maybe we'd beat the heavier rains in the Gorge.

It's Sunday morning, it must be raining...



Is that Hanna?



It was wet, but I still love these green rolling hills:



We decided to go down the Spiral Hwy anyway, it's the shortest route to US-12 (you bypass both Lewiston and Clarkston), and even in the wet, it beats US-95 any day. But, the moto gods were smiling on us. As we neared the turnoff, it looked like the pavement was dry, and sure enough, the whole Spiral Hwy had not been rained on. Needless to say, I waved to Hanna and took off...





And then, as we got on US-12, it started raining again...


It wasn't coming down hard now, just on and off, but enough to keep the roads wet. Hwy 12 is not that bad in this parts, it winds through the hills, and is interesting enough if you can keep the pace up.

Old barn:



This couple didn't seem to be having as much as we were in the rain:



Mustard and green:


We went by Dayton, speed trap capital of Columbia Co.


You always see cool old cars in these towns:


Revenue generation:




Gustavo


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post #20 of 28 (permalink) Old 06-27-2009, 12:36 PM
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The last stretch home.



As soon as you start dropping into the Columbia river, the winds pick up significantly. This is another of those constants of riding to Chase the Snake (OK, it's CtS per se like the rain, it's spring/early summer in the Gorge) - It's always windy on Sunday when are riding west.

Watch the mirror:


That is one of those curious rock formations you see from time to time on the dry side.

Welcome back:


These guys seem to have swapped their cruisers for a pair of Can AM Spyders:


Almost got a ticket for paying more attention to the Spyders than to what was coming up ahead of us. Those dark gray Chargers are really hard to spot...

We stopped in Umatilla for lunch and gas and ran into Steve who was staying at a different hotel, so we missed him in the morning. He was happy to have some company so he joined us for lunch and the ride back. We were still 200 miles away.


Ran into this woodie just outside Umatilla. Not sure about the details, but it looked immaculate.




Steve and Hanna:



When we finally got to I-84, the wind got even stronger, and we still had 175 miles to go...


Clueless Oregon driver:


It doesn't matter how many signs you put up reminding people to stay right, some people have their brain parked in neutral when they drive.

The wind was brutal. I mentioned this before, but riding in the Gorge presents a different sort of challenge. Unlike many other places where the wind blows hard, in the Gorge it changes direction depending on how the road is following the canyon walls. It's not just lean it in to one side and watch for traffic, you constantly have to adjust the bike to the wind conditions.

As we got closer to Portland, about 40 miles out it started to rain. At least it caused the wind to calm down a bit...





We were thinking that we'd all be able to make it into Portland without another gas stop after Umatilla, but just after we passed Bonneville, Hanna motions she went into reserve. So does Steve. The next gas station is about 25 miles away. I really hope they can make it... Traffic was getting heavier, so we slowed down a bit, just to make sure they didn't run out of gas in the middle of the highway. About 10 miles out, my fuel light started flashing too. I mentioned this in Mac's other thread, I got 35.5 MPG on this last run. Absolutely the worst mileage I'd ever gotten on the Versys. Even running up and down the Snake canyons didn't produce anything worse than 47 MPG. When we stopped at the gas station Steve mentioned that he felt as if he had gone 14 rounds with Tyson. And lost...

Surprisingly, as we made our way through town (both Steve and I live on the west side of town) the rain stopped, the sun came out and we had a pretty nice ride home.



It was a fantastic riding weekend (Tyson included ), one of the better long weekend destinations I can think off. Hope you enjoyed riding with us as much as we enjoyed riding it.

Gustavo


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