The trips that weren't and the trip that was

GSequoia

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#1
Let me start out by saying that I know this isn't really a day trip but it sure as hell isn't an epic. Now without any further prepare to be bored by my many words and pictures!

I've been meaning to post this ride report since July. I keep almost doing it then get busy at work and blow it off. Now is the time.

So rewind to this past summer. Now I'm your typical boring guy with a full time job, a wife, and two kids. Subsequently I hardly ever get a chance to ride my motorcycle to places that aren't work and home, pretty much the only guaranteed time I can do that is the annual Death Valley Noobs Rally. But this year something magical happened. I had a week to myself. Mid-July, both kids in a week-long residence camp, wife in the middle of hectic budget season at work with no chance to get out. Hell yes I'm dating my motorcycle that week!

I learned about this week back in February. Start making soft plans. Maybe end up with a buddy or two and ride up to taste the Oregon BDR. Nah that's a lot of commitment when I'm only clear Sunday through Friday. Same buddy and explore the Sierras? Yeah that might work. We deiced to roll with that idea over some beers around a campfire in Death Valley in March.

Noobs Rally is over (bummer), time to go back to work (more bummer). Get busy with work. Time flies on. Coming up on the time to start coordinating this trip. Oh crap what's going on with the construction project in DC? Next phase where I have to be there is coming in mid-July. Fack. Oh BTW here's NYC ready to screw you, too. It starts looking pretty damn certain that I'd have to burn this trip due to work travel. Summer is a tough time, my wife is in the middle of her budgets and can't have me traveling since she works late every night. This is the only week of freedom inside of eight weeks and now I'm going to have to burn that for work. Man they're going to pay for this.

Two weeks out from that magical week I close up any risk of NYC getting in the way. I push them to late July after Holly's first round of budgets. Now I just have DC hanging over my head but boy is it still looking like it's going to screw me. The Sierra trip with David is dead but I start planning a solo alternate trip. See there's this awesome campsite I stayed one night at back in 1995 or so in Arizona. I want to go find it. I decide a week in the Arizona mountains bouncing around the Mogollon Rim will suffice. I start gathering up needed supplies at the last minute but I'm not really optimistic about this since it look like about a 10% chance of happening so I don't really commit.

Thursday before the freedom week. Holly mentions that she's got a couple clear days the week after my magical week. That means I can travel then but DC is still coming up next week so I remain screwed.

Friday about 10am. 26 hours before my would-be freedom starts. I get word that DC has slipped. The lobby won't be ready for me to connect equipment until the following week. It fits exactly into the timeline of Holly's work gap. Holy shit I'm back in the game! Book flights, book hotels for DC.

Gleefully finish the day not really paying attention to work. Think about this trip that I haven't in any way prepared for. How soon can I hit the road? How much do I have to do? Find some target areas and set routes. Crap I never did order the tank bag for my camera, Amazon to the rescue with overnight delivery.

Saturday morning drop kids off at the camp bus. Go home and start tearing into shit. I'm really, really unprepared. No planning for food, gotta go on a supply run, no real thought to gear. It takes time to convert the tank bag into a camera bag, take care of some maintenance tasks, buy farkles and put them on. Saturday leads into Sunday with me working like mad but making it a point to sleep a full eight hours. I have a lot of riding to do at some point, after all.

Finally about 7:00 pm Sunday I'm taking a break from packing and sitting at my desk. I've just got this kinda bad feeling. Mostly caused by realizing where the rim was and that I'd have to ride to and through Phoenix to get to it. In July. I had thought I could take a different route in but it's not going to work out. Lots of distance to do in a night with little planning. Where am I going to sleep once I get out of the low lands in Arizona? Hmmm...

I start to think about this camping trip in the Sequoia National Forest with family coming up in September. Return to a site we haven't been to in ten years next to a lovely creek. I really should take a look at that site to make sure my sister-in-law's car can make it up the road (backcountry dispersed site near the Kern River). Why not do it now? Maybe swing through on the way back from Arizona. Look at route options to do a night run across the desert and run up and over the Southern Sierra range via Sherman Pass. Lots of miles not much time, though. What if I just went there instead?

Yup. Last minute complete change of location. Out come the Arizona maps from my crash bar pannier, in go Sequoia NF and other forests in the same area since I'm running this trip fast and loose. Lose two hours to downloading imagery for the entire region to GaiaGPS. I've got Sunday through Friday to play with and I only know where I"m going to been night. No worries, I got this.

At about 10PM I put on my monkey suit and climb onboard the SuperPig. I've got I don't know how many pounds of gear in the luggage and strapped to the bike, a full tank of gas, an empty bladder, and tunes on my phone coming through my Sena. Let's get this trip that was going.
 
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GSequoia

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#2
I know that there isn't much chance I'll make it the entire 180 miles to the campsite that night. I've been doing too much and woke up too early. I figure I'll make it to the Grape Vine and find a place to camp for the night in the cooler higher elevation. I hit the area around midnight and start poking around.

I forgot about Tejon Ranch. For those that don't know those MFers have lots and lots of land. All if it behind pretty little fences. That entire mountain is behind gates and I don't want to sleep next to the road. Damnit.

After some thought I decide to go to Hungry Valley SRVA. Yes a god damned park. It's funny. I've been a Jeeper (and, since 2010, ADV motorcyclist) for 25 years. I've never been to Hungry Valley. I hate parks. Defined zones. Cooped up population. Over-developed camping. Fees. Well it's the only place around so whoever, I'll deal. I roll into the park about 1am long after the guard shack has closed. I ride down the main access road for awhile (nice road when there's nobody there) and find a camping area. I randomly grab a site in this barren wasteland and set up my little MSR Flylite tent. Being Sunday night there is only one other vehicle in this area, at least.




Morning comes and I get up, roll up my tent, and pack the bike. I'm not a morning person. I'm typically not out of camp until 10 at the earliest. But this area sucks and I want to get to my goal. I'm out by 7:45. As an added bonus the guard shack still hasn't opened so I camped for free. I would have gladly paid for my night but there was nobody to pay.

I backtrack a couple miles to Gorman to grab breakfast. The food here isn't fantastic but isn't bad. I was so famished it tasted great. Good start to the trip.




After a quick meal it's time to top off the tank and get going. I want to get these miles ahead of me fast because I need to ride through the Central Valley and it's July. I made quick work of the Grape Vine and choose a route to CA-178 heading to Lake Isabella avoiding the city of Bakersfield, meandering through farm country instead of desert urban hell. I have to admit that I may have broken some speed laws in the process.

The rather grim welcome to Kern River Canyon. These signs used to say "STAY OUT - STAY ALIVE" but I imagine the river raft outfitters industry didn't much like that.




Next it's a ride up 178, a fun, narrow, twisty road with blind curves and plenty of cars to keep you on your toes. I only get stuck behind slow drivers a couple of times, all in all good ride just getting plenty hot. Did I mention it's July? Keep going, pass Lake Isabella and make the left turn to head up to Kernville, the nearest town to my campsite. I need to get a few things including beer, beer, and some ice for the cooler bag containing said beer.

Sierra Gateway market has always been one of my favorite stores. The odd little quirks of a mountain town store with its random assortment of camping gear and slightly off-put and surly staff members speaks to me. At some point in the the past they built a beer room. A beer room. Now yeah it's cool that it's a room with a lot of beer in it but I've just ridden through over 100º heat and now I'm able to stand inside a refrigerator. Hell yes.




I spent a good twenty minutes in there picking my beer, sending some texts and e-mails, and cooling off. Then made my way to the cashier and took the twenty minute ride to my campsite. You go up the main highway a spell then it's about 1/2 a mile of dirt road. Moderately steep and slightly rutted out. Good to keep the general public away because it looks scary but plenty fine for my SuperPig (and I determine will also work for Patty's CX-5 later this summer). I get to my familiar old campsite, strip off this hot riding gear, and lie down on a granite slab for awhile next to the sound of the rushing water of Salmon Creek.




Maybe I consume a few more cans than I typically would this early in the day but whatever. It's Icelandic beer and I recently learned I have the body of Thor. You only live once. Plus it helps me take a nap. I wake up late in the afternoon ravenous. I never did eat lunch because I was so intent on having that victory beer and nap. Too hungry to want to deal with deciding which Mountain House meal to pick and conveniently close to town I decide that I'll just eat dinner there. Being just around 4:00 pm on a weekday it's a bit tough to find a place to eat that's better than fast food. I settle for Ewings on the River, the fancy joint in town.




Had a nice meal then head back up to my campsite for the night. Some reading, maybe a few more drinks, then lulled to sleep by the sound of Salmon Creek and complete absence of any other living human. Love it.
 
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GSequoia

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#3
I wake up the next morning and start tending camp. Since this campsite has some trees and is fairly warm at only 4,000' I opted for the simpler hammock setup.




Well time to break into my luggage and work on fixing up breakfast.




I rifle through my cases grab my coffee (Starbucks Via packets) and select a Mountain House breakfast. I get my mess kit and fuel bottles out and go to grab my little MSR stove. What stove? Crap I left it on the counter at home.

Pack up and head to town for an excellent breakfast.




I go to all three stores in town and can't find a proper stove so head down to the larger town of Lake Isabella to check that out. No luck there so it's back into Bakersfield.

A pig and a tank meet in Lake Isabella.




No room at the inn.




Before I head down the hill I do a bit of Google searching and settle on trying Camping World. They cater more to the RV crowd but for as sizable a city as Bakersfield there's really not many outfitters. Camping World doesn't have crap for me but they do have a chair and air conditioning. Did I mention it's still July?




After a few phone messages to a local backpacking friend he suggest Dick's Sporting Goods. I'm a bit pessimistic about this as the Dick's by my house doesn't have crap for camping gear but I give it a go. They had what I need. I decide to head back up to the mountains via the same route as before. As I'm heading up there I ponder where I'm going to sleep tonight. I also make it a point to stop in at the Kernville store to spend time in the beer room cooling off before re-supplying with ice to keep the beer I bought yesterday properly chilled.

As I'm in the beer room I decided to try another site I've stayed at in the past. It's much more remote than last night's stay. A fanatic spot with a lot of room. No creek but has a pretty meadow. Plus it's at about 7,000 feet and those extra 3,000 feet make for cooler air. I head up to the area eating up miles of empty twisty road running alongside the Kern River then winding through big trees (no Sequoias here, though). I love this area.

Unfortunately I get to the dirt road that leads to the campsite and find my first closed gate of the week. It's likely closed due to down or hazard trees. I do a lot of Adopt-A-Trail volunteer work with the San Bernardino National Forest so know the score. FS staff are not able to maintain all areas and volunteers aren't focused on this particular spot. I scout around a little and find another road that shows promise. I'm a little apprehensive about the steep, loose, rutted out hill I have to descend but it seems to lead to a nice little clearing, I'll handle getting the pig up that road tomorrow, removing luggage if I have to.

I make it to the site at about 5:00 and sit down and have a beer. It's cool man, I'm not an alcoholic. Those guys go to meetings. After resting I start to break down my gear to set camp and have dinner. Now I'm camping properly instead of going to restaurants!




After dinner I clean up my dishes and re-organize my gear. As you're aware camping on a bike requires you to be very strict about organization otherwise you just end up pissed off at yourself half the time. My load out evolved over the week as I packed and repacked my gear, getting better at it every time.

Since I was up at 7,000 feet tonight I expected it to get a good deal colder. Despite plenty of hammock-friendly trees I deiced to set my tent up. This tent is an MSR Flylite two person backpacking tent.




The neat part about this tent is that in lieu of traditional poles it uses trekking poles as its main pillars. The idea being backpackers probably have those. In preparation of this trip I bought a set of foldable trekking poles so they would stow in my luggage. They did the job fantastically.




I'm old enough to like my comforts so packed two ground pads, stacking one atop the other. Years ago a friend of mine turned me on to this neat little bit of gear. It's a Micro Burst inflation tool. Two AAA batteries and it will get the pads filled up most of the way, it can't really give a lot of pressure but once it caps out I only have to add about three or four lungfuls of air to each bag. The nice part is with Energizer Lithium AAA batteries it lasts a long time. I've probably use it to fill mattresses about a dozen times and am still on the original set of batteries.




Cozy.




Yes this is a bike trip so I've got pictures of the bike.




Home. I did not see or hear another person the entire night.




Being out here in the mountains I'm intentionally cut off from most forms of communication. That said I do value safety so bring a Garmin InReach Mini with me. This helps to coordinate any issues and send messages to my wife every now and then to make sure she isn't cashing in the insurance policy just yet. Aside from that I have my trusty dual band handheld ham radio which I mostly use to monitor local FS radio traffic (good way to get an early warning about fires) and a satellite phone. Having a satellite phone really makes you feel like you've got a good safety net. They're a bit pricey but since I run the IT Department for my company I was able to con them into buying it for me and paying for the monthly service ($50.02 per month for 50 minutes of airtime).




Beyond that it's now getting dark and time to break out the Bulleit Rye whiskey and my trusty Kindle. I turn in at about 10:00 pm for a fantastic night of rest, this time with the sound of a lazy brook about 10' away from my tent.
 
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GSequoia

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#4
I wake up the next morning and climb out of my tent to do my morning business. I break open up my kitchen pannier and set my stove up to make water for coffee.




While I sip my coffee I heat water for my breakfast. The mountain house foods aren't excellent but sure are a lot better than freeze-dried camping food used to be.




While I'm working on breakfast I unrolled my solar panel and set it out in the sun to give my Sena headset some juice for riding tunes.




After breakfast it's time to think about what comes next. Do I run up further in Sequoia? Do I go over Sherman Pass and check out the Eastern side? Decisions, decisions.




I decide to head North. By now it's about noon so a good part of the motivation was grabbing lunch at a small restaurant I know nearby.




The red and black bag you see if my soft-sided cooler bag. It's mostly water-tight so filing it up with a couple six packs and a bag of ice does the job for a days riding. I simply strapped it to the back seat so it would be easy to get to for resupply. The green bag is my daily garbage bag to be disposed of at the next opportunity.

Another gratuitous bike shot at the meadow next to the road by camp. This is right next to that steep and loose hill I mentioned earlier. For all my fretting it ended up being no problem, I didn't even have to lighten the load first.




Lunch was had at the Ponderosa Lodge in the town of Ponderosa. Town is maybe an over statement. The population at last count was 16.




White sitting at lunch I thought a little more about where I might sleep tonight. After some thought I decided on heading up into Sequoia National Park. To get there you need to head back down into the hot Central Valley through the town of Springtake then take the highway back into the mountains, there is no direct path North through the wilderness. The roads, at least, have some value of their own.




I set my maps to take me by the most direct route to get to Grant Grove Village to resupply. It ended up taking me through some pretty obscure and friggen awesome roads in the ranch country on the Western slope of the mountain. I'd never been through here but will be going back. Not many photos as I was too busy riding but it was all either two lanes or fewer with little to no other traffic.




I pay my fee at the park entrance and drop by Grant Grove Village to get another six pack and bag of ice. I drained the ex-ice from my cooling bag in the parking lot and got a few laughs from a teenage kid when he saw me dump a good portion of it over my head. I spent about fifteen minutes talking to him and his dad who were are on a road-going motorcycle trip through the park after having ridden in from San Jose.

Gear back on and head to tonight's home. The plan is to revisit a place I discovered camping with my kids in 2015. One of the downsides to a Sequoia National Park (and most NPs, for that matter) is dispersed vehicular camping just doesn't happen. If you want to camp with a vehicle you're stuck in stupid developed campsites. I don't like developed campsites. I don't care for their "improvements." I also don't go camping to be near other people who aren't directly camping with me. Nestled in between Sequoia NP and Kings Canyon NP (they're two parks operated as one) is the Giant Sequoia National Monument. The monument is operated by the US Forest Service and as such allows dispersed camping. I had found an excellent area called Converse Basin, a lovely spot nearby an old Sequoia Grove that had mostly been logged, and a fantastic site nestled into a clearing.




Denied. A little more backstory to this - 2015 was the year of the Rough Fire. A large fire in the Sierra and Sequoia National Forests that burnt hot and long. I ended up leaving this area because the fire was getting a bit too close for comfort. It ended up burning directly through the area after I left. The area is still closed for rehabilitation.

I'll admit at this point I was feeling a bit down. I'm right up against Sequoia NP and many of the target areas for dispersed camping are closed due to the fire four years ago. I start to ride back toward Grant Grove Village with the idea that maybe I'll bite the bullet and camp at Upper Stoney Creek campground. A developed campground but usually sparsely populated in the week so the lesser of the evils.

As I'm heading that direction I'm sniffing out any dirt road I can see but continuing to find closed gates. As I check one out on the right that leads to the Chicago Stump I notice it continues to the left and the gate it open. Where does this go? Let's find out.

I ride up the road for about a mile and it's getting rutted and steepish. I'm by myself on a heavy bike loaded with even more gear and I'm not the best rider out there so I'm trying not to get myself into too much trouble. So to that end I stop and check my map to see what's here. The road goes quite some distance ultimately leading to an area called Huckleberry meadow. I've never been here before but it has meadow in the name so has got to be nice. It's going to start getting dark here pretty soon so I continue on.

After tackling the hill climb (ended up being easier than it looked) I come to a junction in the road that I had seen on the map. Turn soft left and it leads down to Huckleberry. Hard left winds up a bit higher into the hills and peters out. Right runs North until it connects back to the main highway. As I'm looking down the decent to the meadow (I'm about 1,000' higher than the destination) I look ahead and what is clearly a small camping clearing and see this view (don't mind the helmet, that's mine).




Hmm. Looks promising. Let's walk up to the rock and catch the rest of the view.




Direct view of Hume Lake (a privately owned Christian camp that only kinda has the children of the corn feeling if you're down at it). Yup. Screw Huckleberry, I'm staying here tonight.

I set camp then set a camera up to get some shots of the moon rising over the lake (spoiler - those shots were bunk due to an error in geography).




Twilight over the lake. No sparkly vampires.




About 9:30 at night with a 120 second exposure at f/1.8 on a 50mm lens.




Turns out they were having some sort of Christian dance party here that night. In between the sound of their music and seeing two Jeeps go by this was the only night of the trip that I saw or heard another soul while in camp. I slept well despite the techno Christians.
 
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GSequoia

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#7
I wake up Thursday morning for my last night camping. Of course I'm going to keep the theme and find another spot to stay at. I slowly get my breakfast together then start packing gear, making it a point to take a picture of the site.




I pack the bike up and ready for the next destination. I'm not entirely sure where, I figure I'll head down the road through the park and eat lunch at Stony Creek (note: Not great food there, it used to be a bit better) and pick target destinations over a meal.




I ride through Sequoia NP with little traffic. One nice thing about Sequoia is it's more of a weekender's park. Mid-week population tends to be on the low side. About a mile from Stoney, though, I find all the cars.




They're doing work to a culvert running under the road and having to do periodic full shutdowns. Oh well, there goes about 25 minutes.




After they open the road I continue to Stoney Creek (about 1/4 mile past the construction zone) and eat the previously mentioned underwhelming lunch and decide what to do. I'm going to head out North and East past Big Meadows (staging area for a couple of places I like to backpack) in search of Kennedy Grove. I don't really know anything about it but in and around Sequoia NP if you see anything that has Grove in the name it's going to include Sequoia trees. I kinda like those, Sequoia is my middle name, after all.

I check the map and decide on a route. I see a little side road that looks like it has promise so add it into my route. I leave pavement and head up toward Buck Mountain Fire Lookout (worth the walk up the stairs if you're ever there) and hang left down a road that clearly doesn't get much use. Fun little road. Tight with a lot of turns and good scenery. I see a side road that looks promising and head down it and see some potential for camping.




Nice view but kinda exposed and I'm not entirely feeling it. Plus it's only about 2:00 pm now so I'm not quite ready to get off the bike. I mentally mark the place off and continue on. As I'm heading out of the spur back to the road I'm given this pocket view of the Buck Mountain lookout tower.




I continue down this fantastic dirt road to connect to a more well-traveled road (still dirt) that heads toward Kennedy. As I reach the Kennedy turnoff I'm welcomed by another closed gate. Damnit. I'm feeling a little put off by the gates and decide that I should probably go back to the site I had found earlier. I backtrack and have fun bombing up that little road. I get about halfway to the site and change my mind. It feels more like that would be a good Jeep camp spot, not motorcycle spot. I dunno, maybe I'm crazy, maybe it's Mabelline.

I decide to turn around and head the opposite direction on that slightly more traveled road. From a quick look at the map it looks like it loops around a peak and, ultimately, connects up on the far side of the Big Meadows camping area (a long stretch of road with many semi-developed campsites). I figure that worst case scenario I'll pick an empty area in Big Meadows. About halfway to where I expect to connect back up to Big Meadows I see another lonely dirt road to the left with no gate. I take it.

This road has clearly not seen use in some time. It has a decent roadbed but in areas is twin tracks (two dirt strips with grass in between). Fun little spot. I come to a fork in the road. Left is mostly straight, right leads up a dodgy looking climb and continues. Since I'm solo and not miles away from any sort of civilized road I opt left and find this site.




Decent spot but a bit disappointing that there aren't any good hammock spots.




Exposed view on the hillside but looks directly toward Kings Canyon. Definitely a good spot. I remove the riding gear and start getting ready to set camp although I still have this nagging feeling that it isn't entirely perfect.

As I'm setting the tent I find out why. Millions of little sticker balls on the ground. Nothing that will draw blood or send you to the hospital but enough to annoy the holy hell out of you. Hmmm. Not many other options but maybe I should walk back up trail and check out that right fork?

--Continued below--
 
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GSequoia

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#8
Thursday continued.

I do so. I hike about 3/4 of a mile and come to the end of the road. It's right near the top of a peak with a commanding view of Jennie Lakes Wilderness, the area I had mentioned backpacking in.



Yeah. This is the place. I high tail it back to the bike, pack it back in, and ride up the hill. Again the climb I was concerned about was no problem.

I was even greeted by this Red Tailed Hawk once I got back up there. Sure he was probably just screeching because he was pissed off at me for scaring away mice but I'll take what I can get.




Nice spot that I will be going back to for sure. The first thing I found were two trees the perfect distance apart with fantastic view from any angle.




A well-tended fire ring that I'll remember for future Jeep trips. I don't burn fires when motorcycle camping in areas like this. I don't feel comfortable in the dry West having a fire unless I have at least one full five gallon can of water, preferably two. Obviously that's a bit much for Moto camping. I'm rather okay with no fire.




The previously mentioned Rough fire burned through this area as well, this was at the edges of the fire, though, so it didn't burn through as hot so FS did not need to close the area.







Important matters first.




Guess I should let the wife know I'm alive.




More bike shots. Aren't you sick of it yet?




At the base of the granite hill behind the bike is Weaver Lake, one of my backpacking destinations.




Time for dinner. Chili Mac. Make sure to have that shovel ready!




I love the cheesy pictures they have on the bags.

Camp in entirety.




Being that I was on a bike I had packed light. July isn't too cold but it started to get a little chilly here at 7,800'. I improvised with my jacket liner (which I had mostly brought to use to keep my camera lenses in).




Now I had mentioned failing to catch the moon the previous night. This time I was going to get it. I made a plan and set references to use. The moon ended up being just where I expected.




Foreground lit by a quick flash of my headlamp.




Illuminated only by moonlight. 30mm ISO 400 f/4 45 seconds.




ISO400 18mm f/3.5 at 30 seconds.




The shots are a little fuzzy. I'll need to go back next year and try again.

After the photographs it was into the sleeping bag for the last night of wonderful solo mountain sleep. Yet again not a soul around.
 
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GSequoia

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#9
I woke up Friday morning refreshed but a bit bummed that it was time to head home. I have to pick the kids up from their camp bus at about 11am Saturday so staying one more night just wouldn't work out, I sure was tempted to talk myself into it, though.

I make breakfast, then slowly break camp. I'm in no real hurry to get out of there. Once packed I start down the lonely old dirt road down. One thing I will note: I really should have spent more time there and while I was doing so I should have warmed the bike up. Going down that steep hill with a cold engine and resulting fast idle was a little interesting.

The ride out.




I took some video on this ride as well but haven't gotten around to working on it. I don't know if I ever well, must of the video footage I shoot just lives on various hard drives forever.

As I was leaving the park I got to wait for construction again. This time I had *just* missed the target and was first in line. I spent about an hour here.




PS - I don't know what it is about road construction crews in NPS lands but the flagger is always a hot chick, sup with that?

Figured I had to work a photo at a sign somewhere into this trip.




I chose a bit of a meandering way down the mountain. I wanted to extend the trip as much as I could and didn't really care about what time I got home. I ultimately headed South winding through the park and heading into Three Rivers.

On the way I caught this view.




This little juvenile bear was running next to then across the road. The car ahead of me (whose slow speed had been annoying me) saw it and stopped, I flagged some oncoming traffic to get them to stop and he moseyed along his way.

Once I dropped into the Central Valley it got hot fast. Have I mentioned it was July? I stop at Lake Kaweah and walk down to the shore to soak my cooling vest (marginally effective) and dunk my head (maximally effective).




Bloody typical.




Heading up the Grape Vine.




The last photo is a simple amusement. Something about the hard ride up the Grape Vine, the sudden flattening out, and heading down a small hill into a gas station confused my trip computer. After filling the tank I saw this.




Man I wish I had that kind of range!

After this it's just freeway home. Nothing exciting. I got home smelly and tired. I take a nice shower, have dinner and that was it.

A few stats I collected from the trip:

Provisions used:
4.8 gallons water
144 ounces beer
2 restaurant lunches
1 restaurant dinner
2 restaurant breakfasts
3 mountain house breakfasts
3 mountain house dinners
4 granola bars
888.4 miles ridden
22.4 gallons fuel​

I realized later that I really should have reset one of my trip timers to collect riding hours. Oh well.

Sequoia
 
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#15
Great write up and pictures. that is exactly how i like to do my trips when i have time. I have a general area i am planning on getting to at some point but how i get there and how i get home is up in the air. I really like to meander and not have a set plan and time line.
 
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