Well we made it. We had a great ride. Left the house at 6:30 am Sat. 5/30/09, so if you have a Or. / Ca. map handy I would like to show you the way. Prior to the trip I like most anyone else, watched the 7-10 day weather forcast, what to wear, heated gear? rain gear? extra this or that. I decided on only the heated gloves and leave the rain gear at home, the wife packed us light as we often stop at the dealers for pit stops and wanted to be sure we had extra space for the must haves. So friday night as I finish loading up I see both sadle bags have allot of extra space, and evan after seconds thoughts, didn't pack heated jackets or rain gear, ah we'll be ok, weatherman says so, and hey we going to California, it never rains there. We leave Spokane heading west on I-90 70 miles to Ritzville heading south on 395 towards the Tri-Cities aka Pasco/Richland/Kennewick, for breakfast and fuel, perfect t-shirt weather. On south to the Columbia river and on to 14 west, north side of the river, less wind and traffic on this side as well as I want to stay of interstates as much as poss. We cross the river in to Biggs on 97 s. and follow down to 138 w. to go arround Crater Lake, to 62 s. This route takes us along the Rogue River, lots of rushing water / small water falls, and did I metion rain, we made our way through it to Shady Cove, found a bank drive through and waited, thunder / lightening and monsoon rain. Started to let up so we took off, 2 blocks later we are under cover again at a gas station, another 1/2 hour than it lets up enough to find a motel for the night. Sunday, full tank of gas, dry off the seat and we head over Grants Pass on to 199 and into Cresent City, Ca. and onto hiway 101 s. We cruise the Redwoods. View attachment 3539 than on further south. We came across a wild cat santuary, Kindome of the Cats? We did the 1 1/2 hr. tour and at the end this big cat that can reach up to 12 ft. when on it hind legs, calmly turned around, puckered it's dodad and spraied this gal like there was no tomarrow. I'm glad that I instinkly had back'd up, somehow forgetting to warn her. LOL. So back on 101 this time of the day was a nice ride. light traffic, bad car wreck, marine air, some wind, the wife is ready for her iced late from Mcyd's, but they only have iced coffee, guess who has to make up for that one. Now I need to write a letter to find out why. We are running behind schedule but make a stop in Legget to drive through the Redwood tree, but my wife the photographer won't let me stop and uses her cell phone to video this, obviosly this tree isn't what I thought it was going to be, I know the antenna's were dragging the inside. But the video is very funny with her narating and the bike sound in the back round. I will try to edit later to add this. Wanting to make up time we stay on 101 top speed up to 80 at times, the wife later lets me know it is colder, and foggy with wind from the right, she wants to know how much farther to the Golden State Bridge, should be awhile I tell her with the confidence of my photografic map, 2 turns later we are on it, fog so thick we could only see about 30 ft up and part way across. Everyone in the US must have been there. We filled up and scedaddled. Our intent was Monterey, figured that dealer should have a good t-shirt, it's only a couple inches on the map, should be there in no time, took a stretch break at this light house and on the road again. We gave up on Moterey, it's 5:30 we are u hungry and need to find a place for the night. We eat in Castroville follow 101 to 198 this turn'd out to be a good compromise, lots of twisties / roller coaster type road. Spent the night in Coalinga Next day we found our way to Bakersfield H-D From Bakersfield we followed 58 to Mojave for lunch. take 14 s. to 138 e. this area was Dry, Hot, Very windy, took a couple days for my neck muscels to not be so tender. Got on I-15 and just held on, the wind was really something. Didn't take long and we were pulling in to Quad H-D in Loma Linda, 15 minutes is what Lynn said we had for this stop, I found my wife talking to a couple trying to decide on a RKC or Ultra Classic, Told him to get both, I think I should gotten a commission on this one, 1/2 hr. later we finaly leave. And they started to make thier deal. I have to say, once we were on the interstate people were friendlier than I expected, no problem switching lanes, people gave us space, even when we got closer to San Diego and had to walk the bike for awhile, as I wanted to move to the next lane over to see if the concrete felt the same on my feet, they let me over. Had a few sport bikes zip past between cars like they were bullet proof, and before long we were back up to 15, 20 mph. After a 3 day visit with my sister it's time to head home, but before we leave we hit walmart for some kind of rain protection and come away with a couple of ponchos, as we start to leave we get the, drive carefull and call every time you stop from my sister, as I take off from the curb into the crown of the road, you guess'd it, we almost fall over, I tell you what, a loaded up Ultra with a passenger is real hard to pull back up when your almost on the crash bars. almost asked my brother in law for help, but hey I'm tough and struggled like crap to get up straight, took a deep breath and tried again, wife was a good sport about, said it was good to get it out of the way. We made it about an hour on I-15 n. when it started to rain, no problem we have rain ponchos, man did they suck, we looked like 2 red balloons, lynn was laughing and tring to pull both of them tight so I could see beside us. not my best idea. We soon took them off and stuffed them in the saddle bag, thinking the water will do us good. we found hiway 395 and headed north. Finding our way past Mono Lake, and along side the mountains . We stopped in Carson City for the night, Treated the misses to dinner at the Gold Nugget and splurged on the penny slots, she wouldn't let me watch as she played, so I found a machine and lost a dollor fast, put in another and she comes over and say's What Are You Doing? Hey I'm up a buck, than she shows me her ticket. $49.50 / $29.50 profit in 5 minutes, she than goes on to tell me to always hit max bet, Certainly, I'm a rookie here, hit max bet and befor long I'm up $15.00 I'm thinking time to go, but no, the gambler in me said to try another machine, wham bam $0, now, time to go. But hay it was fun and much better than the food. Saturday we wake up to sprinkles, so we head to Reno and find more rain, , we get inside to warn up and see if something really needs to go home with us when I spy the rain gear, Nelsen-Riggs, We have H-D rain gear, at home, so as not to turn this trip into a cold, wet nightmare, I quickly let lynn know, like I found the pot of gold, bought them put them on and off we go, north to Alturas, and stop for lunch, back on 395, for the next of what seems like forever, we were on a stright line for as far as you can see, slight turn, and again staight as an arrow forever, we head to and arround Lake Albert, , this again was a nice route. Our goal was to get to Burns, Or. for the night, we made it to Hines, boy the skitters are hungry there, we walked over to the dinner and got bit or slapped off over a dozen on the 5 minute walk. Sunday we got on the road about 6:00 and 2 blocks later we are in Burnes, looks farther on the map, between Burnes and Pendleton is truly a great ride, better if it is not cold, rainy, and alittle sleet with passes of 5300 ft. In Pendleton we fuel up and eat. Home is not too far now. I can leave the rain gear off now, after 2 days of rain the sun feels good. We ride on I-84 for a short time than back on 395 through the Tri-Cities and north to Ritzville, I90 east 70 miles to Spokane. The trip was 3072 miles door to door, fuel cost of $210.00, mpg low of 38, high of 48, average with 17 fuel stops was 44mpg. We had a really good time, evan with the rain, I'm lucky to have my wife, a riding partner, who never complained, and made this ride another to remember, By the way, she was looking at the map for our next ride while I was unloading the bike. Fair trade off don't you think?