My Sacramento Rental Adventure(long post)

Discussion in 'Road Trips/Touring' started by Dr. Dolittle, May 25, 2008.

  1. Dr. Dolittle

    Dr. Dolittle Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    6,399
    108
    24
    I was out in Sacramento twice in the last two weeks on business so I had planned on renting a Harley one of those times for an all day exploration of the area. I wimped out on the 15th since it was over 100 degrees so I made my plans for the 22nd. Mapquested a 6 1/2 hour route through Placerville and then looping up into the mountains between Yosemite and Lake Tahoe returning to Sacramento on Highway 50. Weather.com forecast mid 80's in Sacramento but mid 50's and 30% chance of showers in Markleeville (only "mountain" city I could find a forecast for) so I decided on leather jacket over my summer mesh one. You will soon see what a great choice this was! Hopped on my rented 2008 Road Glide and pulled out of Sacramento HD at 9:30 AM. Here's what I learned:

    1) Road Glide steering is definitely lighter than my Street Glide because of the frame mounted fairing vs. batwing. This took a little getting used too but it was nothing major.
    2) Even with the Road Glide fairing, riding in high winds SUCKS! At the lower elevations it was windy AND gusty. I'm not the most experienced rider so I'd never encountered conditions like this and there were times I was fighting to maintain my lane on I80 and 50. Man, I had a death grip on those handlebars. I don't know how you folks do it that ride in those conditions frequently.
    3) Full face helmets - I ride with a 3/4 and visor at home but rented a full face. Peripheral vision is way less, they're hot, and then when the temperatures started dropping, it kept fogging up. Yes, I had all the vents open. I know they're safer but now I don't think I'll ever get one.
    4) Mapquest is great for planning route, distance, and time. HOWEVER, it don't know jack about elevation! I left Angel's Camp heading northeast on route 4 and kept seeing elevation signs go by - 2000 feet, 3000 feet, 4000 feet. Not coincidentally, I watched my onboard air temp gauge start dropping - 60 degrees, 50 degrees, 40 degrees. I then proceeded to ride for the next 2 - 2 1/2 hours in sub 40 degree temps and snow flurries! Beautiful but not relaxing at all. The road was getting damp and I kept worrying about it getting icy - unfounded since the ground is usually a lot warmer than the air but the thought wouldn't go away.
    5) If they're forecasting mid 50's and showers you better plan on colder and snow at some point if you're riding in the mountains! I think I maxed out at 8,700 feet elevation at one point.
    6) If you live in the area and have never ridden Route 4 up over Ebbett's Pass you really should do it - on a nice sunny day!

    OK, I've rambled on long enough. It's just that it's been three days now and the adrenaline is still pumping through me anytime I think about my ride. It was an adventure in every sense of the word, I learned a ton, and I'll never forget it. Just had to share it with all of you.
     
  2. R. Lewis

    R. Lewis Senior Member Retired Moderators

    2,183
    48
    5
    THANKS Doc!! Sounds like one heck of a ride!!! Glad to hear it was a enjoyable ride for you even with the snow falling!!!
     
  3. Fourdogs

    Fourdogs Junior Member

    805
    28
    3
    Last year we visited California in May, and onto June...froze our butts off...went on to Colorado for a 14 day trip which included Colo, Utah, Ariz,and New Mexico..what we learn is simple...May Gray...June Gloom...July Monsoons...lol...but would not trade that trip fot nothing in the World...lol:D
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2008
  4. Elena1200cc

    Elena1200cc Member

    8
    11
    0
    HELL YA!!!!

    My New Mexico weather is the craziest.... BUT!! I LOVE IT. People who visit often ask why we carry so much gear if we're local..... I Bet you know that answer... ha ha ha

    I hope you were able to visit NM518 and NM68 this is a bikers dream ride. I-25 sucks..
     
  5. BaZa

    BaZa Member

    71
    16
    0

    Dr.Doo, who did you rent from was it Folsom H-D in Sacramento?

    I would be interested in hearing and having a report on the hire experience as I am over the pond here in the UK.

    This was us out there last year at the end of March:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2008
  6. Dr. Dolittle

    Dr. Dolittle Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    6,399
    108
    24
    No, I rented from Sacramento HD on Arden Drive. Unfortunately, even though it was a great rental experience, Mary informed me that their management has decided to get out of the rental business. She said it was the least profitable portion of their business. Boy, I hope this isn't a trend towards dealers becoming strictly clothing boutiques that occasionally sell motorcycles!
     
  7. BaZa

    BaZa Member

    71
    16
    0
    I can assure you the link above is no way a clothing boutique and the service dept can talk to you about pans, shovels and the new Evo's.....LOL
     
  8. Flashback

    Flashback Active Member

    294
    28
    1
    hey sorry the weather wasn't great for you but glad you got to go see the "gold" country some nice rides through there. Hope you had fun.
     
  9. Dr. Dolittle

    Dr. Dolittle Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    6,399
    108
    24

    You know, reflecting back on it, I guess it could have been a lot worse. May at almost 9,000 feet can go from summer to spring to winter all in one day! Like I said, it was quite an experience and I'd do it again in a heartbeat, with a better check of the weather this time!