As the rainy season descends upon the west coast, its nice to have some dreamy trip to anticipate and plan. After my wee getaway through Washington, Idaho and around the British Columbia Interior, I immediately started to imagine a more elaborate exploration of the U.S. (as long as the Canadian dollar doesn’t tank even more!). I picked up a book at my library called “Motorcycle Journeys through the Southwest” by Martin C. Berke, and have begun Google mapping!
I get approximately 3 weeks (almost 4 weeks if I manage to juggle some Statutory holidays) of vacation, and this is what I would like to jam in. We’ll take the Coastal highway #101 most of the way down through Washington, Oregon, and into California, avoiding the Interstate as much as possible. I imagine Scott will want to pop into San Francisco, and I could handle dipping down to Big Sur before heading east to Yosemite National Park.
From Yosemite we could roll along the #395, briefly into Nevada, although I probably won’t go into the heart of Las Vegas as it kind of frightens me and I don’t really see the appeal. Big city lights, gambling, show girls, all-you-can eat buffets, just seem a tad tacky in comparison to all these incredible natural wonders.
Utah is what I am really excited about! I have a thing for monumental rock formations, and this State is full of them. I want to camp and explore in Zion and Bryce canyon National Parks, especially the Slot Canyon and Sunset Point. Everything just looks so surreal and magical.
From there we could meander around Capital Reef National Park, the Arches National Park, the Canyonlands to see “The Needles,” and finally into Moab. According to Berke’s book there are tons of amazing motorcycle loops to take, combined with some incredible hiking in the area.
We found a cool picture of a Sheep Mountain Power House near Crystal Mill, Colorado, which was built in 1892, perched dramatically on a rock, so that will be a goal as we begin to head north again. Colorado looks to be packed with National Parks, and all I imagine is that we won’t want to go all the way in to Denver, but will want to take the most scenic route towards Wyoming.
Obviously, Yellowstone National Park is the big draw in Wyoming but I don’t know much about that State and the best route through it (open to suggestions!). From Yellowstone we’ll visit friends in Missoula before the epic Glacier National Park and the “Going to the Sun Road” and all the beauties of Montana. I’ve been there before with the MUMC crew, but we barely stopped to take in any real hikes or spend more than one night, so it will be good to go back and take more time.
We’ll probably head up into Canada towards Cranbrook and depending on time, stop into the Kootenays again before heading home. This is all speculative, but I think we’ll do it! I’ll be gleaning tips and recommendations, especially sweet camping spots this coming year to build a really epic trip!
I’m also reminded to take better care of the old Honda if I want him to take me all over the States. After my last trip I left him sitting in his filthy sludgey oil and shouldn’t have been surprised when it took me two days to kick him over! The only good thing was that because I was so late for a birthday party, Scott bolted on the foot pegs onto his bike and doubled me. At first, I was really grumpy as I never imagined I would need to be doubled. But then I remembered that I doubled Scott a few times before he was licensed, and he was absolutely delighted! So I relaxed and enjoyed the ride, and he did great for hosting his first double ride action. It was actually pretty fun, haha!
I have since done a proper oil change and even gave him a new oil filter for all his hard work this last summer. It was a wonderful time. Please feel free to message me recommendations.