VIAGRA OR/WA Lunch and Windy Ridge Ride - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-20-2010, 01:22 AM Thread Starter
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VIAGRA OR/WA Lunch and Windy Ridge Ride

OK, I admit it was a short notice ride, but I expected some of the NWesteners that keep saying we need to go riding to show up...

I was at the Washougal Chevron as advertised. I waited and waited... No other Versys showed up.



So I took off on my own on Hwy 14 towards Carson. This is one of the nicer overlooks of the Gorge from the WA side:


Cape Horn:



Continued past Bonneville dam:


On to Carson and Wind River Hwy. I ran into an old timer on a BMW R100RT returning from the BMW MOA Rally. I went by him just before the twisty section, so he picked up the pace and tried to catch up. When I slowed down for the straight before the campground he came by and gave me the thumbs up. Stopped to chat with him a bit, he was interested in the Versys, said it looked like it was made for these twisties. Nice guy, seemed to have been on many a long trip, but strangely enough, he had not been around Mt. St. Helens since it was all gravel roads. I gave him directions to get to Windy Ridge and Carson and took off back up the mountain.

Towards the end of Wind River I ran into this group of sport bikes that was keeping a very nice pace:



As well as many other BMW riders that were coming back from the MOA Rally:


There was actually a surprising number of bikes and cars on Sunday. Finally, a bit of clear road on FS-25:


Since I was way early for the lunch time meeting in Randle, I decided to go up to Windy Ridge first. On the way up I come around a corner to see a guy in riding gear standing by the side of the road and no bike to be found anywhere in sight. Then I notice the scrape marks on the road:


Not good. I make a U-turn, go back to see how's he doing. Since he was already standing, I figured it couldn't be that bad. He has some holes in his jacket and pants, but is otherwise OK. The bike, OTOH...



Can you tell what it is? This was sitting about 30 ft. down an embankment that was rather rocky. How about now:


Lucky him, he fell off on the road and didn't slide down the hill with the bike. I don't think he would have fared as well as he did through those rocks. Seems he hit a floorboard (which he said didn't fold) and it levered the rear wheel off the ground causing the slide. He couldn't have been going very fast, but some of those turns are sharper than they seem initially. Of course, there is no cell reception up there, so I rode up to Cascade Peaks, looking for a ranger with a radio to call for help, as there was no way to get that bike out of there without a tow-truck and a strong winch.

FS-99:





Got to Cascade Peaks, they had a radio, and called for help. Went back down to let him know help was coming, by this time it was almost 13:00, so I was goin to be late for the lunch meeting. Ran out to Randle, FS-25 between the FS-99 intersection and Randle is worse than ever. If you are not careful, you can easily bend a rim on that road.

Got to the Mt. Adams Cafe, no Versys in sight:






Gustavo


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Last edited by Gustavo; 07-20-2010 at 01:26 AM.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-20-2010, 01:23 AM Thread Starter
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After lunch

Had a nice lunch, chatted with many bikers and went back to Windy Ridge. Well, yes, I didn't actually make it all the way to the top the first try...

FS-23 is still closed, so you really have to go right here to get back south:


Instead of going back on FS-25, I took the "short cut" - FS-26 through Ryan Lake. FS-26 is tight, single lane with turnouts, kind of road that often gets washed out in winter/spring. It seems to have survived fairly well this last winter, no worse for wear than usual (meaning lots of gravel sections, the usual frost heaves, but other than that OK pavement).

FS-26:





Exploring near Ryan Lake:



FS-26:



The forest is growing back, but still looks like someone dropped a giant set of pickup sticks:



Windy Ridge and Mt. St. Helens:


Mt. St. Helens:



I think it was about a 350 miles day, all but 60 of those on really cool back roads, everything from nice scenic sweeping ride along the Columbia to the crazy twisty stuff on FS-30/25/99/26. Those of you that thought about it and bailed, really missed out on a nice ride. Not to worry, I'll ride up there again any time you guys want to go...

Gustavo


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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-20-2010, 02:00 AM
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Man love to ride with you over that, just a long ride to get to where you are Gustavo. It looks magic.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-20-2010, 03:40 PM Thread Starter
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Man love to ride with you over that, just a long ride to get to where you are Gustavo. It looks magic.
All you need is a couple of weeks of vacation (plus transit times, even in a flying tube, it's a long ways from Kiwiland ) and you are set. I may not be able to offer a guided tour the whole two weeks, but I can sure set you on the right path to see some of the nicer places in the NWet. And, it's a lot better than it looks, my photography doesn't do justice to the scenery around here.


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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-20-2010, 04:14 PM
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I really wanted to go but my son, who is a Marine, is home on leave. Looks like it would have been an awesome ride though. I'm also glad that you were able to aid that fallen rider. For him it must have been a nightmare.
I did let me son ride my Versys and now he thinks it's an great bike. He didn't quite get it at first. We also performed an oil change, so easy to do!
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-21-2010, 02:07 AM
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WoW! That looks like the kind of ride I can only dream of (living in Mi.).

Great pics and report. Thank's for sharing.


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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-21-2010, 04:46 AM
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Very nice. We used to live in Seattle. I really miss riding thru the cascades. The pacific northwest will always have a special place in my heart.
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-21-2010, 04:05 PM
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awesome ride and scenery, My son and I were in Washougal in 2005 as my son was racing at the Washougal AMA Motocross national youth classes 85cc and super mini 105cc. Beautiful country up there. The National is coming up you going Gustavo?
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-21-2010, 05:53 PM
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I may go on Saturday. It depends on if I can obtain a press pass or not.
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-21-2010, 07:39 PM
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Sheesh...I didn't know 99 got so narrow, I can only imagine what it will be like when the trees growback, won't be able to see as much coming the other way. I love FS25, and have only ridden it once all the way though to the Columbia. I read before to take it tame on the leg between Randle and the turn off for 99, and so I did enjoying the scenery and the Harley's all heading the opposing direction. I am going to make a run down there when I am feeling better.
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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-21-2010, 11:18 PM
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I've done that ride many times. Never on the versys though... wish I saw the invite i woulda gone with you.
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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-22-2010, 01:06 AM Thread Starter
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I really wanted to go but my son, who is a Marine, is home on leave.
FWIW, I think you made the right choice last Sunday.

Not sure about the Washougal races, I can't seem to get anybody here at home excited about that, so we may end up doing something else (probably running to the coast to hide from the heat wave that's coming ).

Gustavo


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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-22-2010, 01:12 AM Thread Starter
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Sheesh...I didn't know 99 got so narrow, I can only imagine what it will be like when the trees growback, won't be able to see as much coming the other way.
The single lane road is FS-26, not 99. FS-99 is a two lane road all the way to Windy Ridge, but it is tight and twisty, so when the trees grow back it'll be a lot more difficult to see traffic coming the other way. Even now some car drivers go into a state of panic from that road. Almost every time I ride it I run across a driver who is so afraid of the road s/he needs to straddle the center line when driving on the cliff side lane (while going 10 MPH ). You probably don't want to meet them on a blind curve coming head on at you...


Gustavo


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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-22-2010, 01:16 AM Thread Starter
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I've done that ride many times. Never on the versys though... wish I saw the invite i woulda gone with you.
I'll try to organize another lunch ride to Randle. Hopefully, with a bit more advance warning for everybody to get organized this time...


Gustavo


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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-22-2010, 01:28 AM
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Nice pics Gustavo! I'll be in that area next week while at SportBike Northwest in Stevenson. Can't wait to visit that area again!
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post #16 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-22-2010, 11:31 AM
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I'll try to organize another lunch ride to Randle. Hopefully, with a bit more advance warning for everybody to get organized this time...


Gustavo
That would be great, Gustavo. Sorry to miss out on this one. My wife and I were down close to your neck of the woods on the coast for our annivesary.

Cheers,
David

David

I always come back from one of these trips with about 350 pictures of my bike - Ewan McGregor
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post #17 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-25-2010, 06:07 PM
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Great report as always, sorry I missed it too.

Can't believe a bike has floorboards that don't fold, asking for trouble.
VIAGRA, VersysIntoAdventuresandGreatRidesAnytime!

Machog


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post #18 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-25-2010, 06:33 PM
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I was working my last day before my week off that day!! AArgh!!

I always miss the good rides. There are like 8 people within 20 miles of where I'm sitting right now, on this forum!
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post #19 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-25-2010, 08:29 PM
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Wish I could have made it. I saw the invite but was leaving that morning for vacation.

Every other weekend is free for me so hopefully I can make the next ride.

1974 Kawasaki F11
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post #20 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 10:30 AM Thread Starter
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I just made another run up to Windy Ridge. My friend Hanna said that for her b-day she wanted me to take her up to Windy Ridge (not that she can't go on her own...). I'm adding the pics here, since it's sort of on topic.


Found this nasty hydraulic fluid spill running up Wind River Hwy. It went for a while and covered most of the lane in some turns:


The culprit:



We had quite a variety of bikes on this ride - cruiser, small sportbike, large sport-tourer and the Versys:


Hanna, Perry and Anton:



Hanna:



Perry:



Anton:





Perry on FS-25:



We made it to Windy Ridge:


[img]http://www.buhacoff.com/mc/NW%202010/P1010765.jpg[img]


Eclectic group of bikes:



Anton and Perry on FS-99:




I also made a clip of the ride up FS-99:



Gustavo


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