Worst day on a motorcycle ever!

I know, I know…that title sounds horrible. Especially after the great day I had yesterday. I’ll explain. It all started great. Kind of. I stayed in an overpriced dump in Bridgeport California last night. I slept terribly, despited being desperately tired. Go figure. Finally dragged myself out of bed at 7:30, got showered and went into town. Found a decent bakery that had a good apple fritter and coffee. All I needed. Then I got on my way.

30 minutes into my trip I passed a sign that said Bodie State Park, Ghost town, 10 miles. It was a dirt road. As I passed it I thought, why not? So I whipped around and headed up the road. I laughed to myself when another sign described the road as being very rough. Bring it! I’m on and adventure bike now! Something I could have never done with my Harley. 10 miles later I crested a hill and saw the coolest old town you could imagine. In the middle of nowhere! Or so I thought, apparently there’s an easier way to get there and by the time I left, there were about 100 people there. No worries, it’s a huge place and plenty of room. I met up with one of the “ranger talks” at the old Methodist church. These are usually great in my experience. This guy was the exception. I excused myself after about 10 minutes, whipped out the self tour brochure I paid an extra $3 for and ventured out on my own. Founded in 1859 with it’s boom years around the late 1870’s, Bodie is an interesting place. Here are some pictures.

Ok, so here’s where everything starts going downhill. I reverse my course back down the dirt road and begin the long trek across south-central Nevada. It’s actually a beautiful place in it’s own way. As far as roads go, it’s hit or miss. This part of Nevada is made up of a series of North-South mountain ranges separated by huge valleys. The engineers who laid out the roads oh so many years ago were clearly uninspired. The roads go absolutely straight across the valleys, sometimes up to 20 plus miles. Did I mention they’re absolutely straight? So. Freaking. Boring. Then you do a bit of winding road as you cross the intermediate mountain range and then another huge valley with a straight road. Ad nauseum. And to be honest, it wouldn’t be so bad. What made today bad, and what ruined the whole day was the 20-40mph crosswind from the south. Relentless. On a Harley that weighs 1000lbs it may not have been so bad. With a Harly style half helmet it may not have been so bad. But…on a lightweight, 500lb bike with a helmet that basically has a sail attached as a visor, damn. I was riding with the bike canted at least 15 degrees over into the wind, just to maintain a straight line. My shoulders and back are exhausted from being tense for at least 3 hours straight. My neck is destroyed from trying to keep my head centered and not flying off to the side. Speaking of off to the side, the wind literally made me change lanes into oncoming traffic at least 4 times. Completely unexpected. Scary as hell.

But I made it. At least so far. I’ve stopped in the cool little town of Cliente Nevada for a cold drink and some sustenance. The sustenance is definitely trash food but I’m hungry, exhausted and I stopped caring about anything around 4 hours ago. Now I just need to make it to my hotel in Pioche about 25 minutes from here. I think I can do that. If they had a massage the rapist I would love that. Not likely.

So that’s day 2. 1 to go. I got this.

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