Tuesday, July 5, 2011

WeSTOC XVI Nelson B.C. Canada, June 20-23, 2011

Rudy and I left TentSTOC at 7:30am Sunday morning the 19th, planning to make it to Kennewick WA to find a hotel for the night and then to finish the rest of the 950+ mile ride arriving in Nelson BC by 5pm on Monday the 20th. We ended up spending the night in Hermiston OR, a few miles short. Monday morning we were up early and on the road again.

Since we were on a tight schedule only a few photos were taken along the way and I have not included them here. They're up on my Smugmug account (see my Links) if you really want to see them... I wanted to focus on the good stuff here.

Here we stopped for a rest and photo op somewhere along Hwy 31 (maybe Hwy 20) about 40 minutes or so from the border crossing at Nellway BC.

As we were getting ready to get back on the road a couple of other ST's went by... We followed them up to the border. The Canadian border guard got real pissy with Rudy for having cameras mounted on his helmet and the front of the bike even though they were not turned on. I was glad they didn't notice that I had been taking pictures!

After being inspected and detected we pulled over to get the obligatory you have arrived photos.

We arrived at the Nelson City Campground around 2:30pm, after a 2 day ~963 mile ride. We set up camp after being fed ham sandwiches by Carol and Mac who arrived ahead of us.

My home away from home...

The view of the lake from the campground was not too shabby!

A morning shot of the sleepy campground.

After setting up camp I had nice long hot shower before we walked down to the hotel where the non-camping folks were staying. Here's a nice shot of the Kootenay from the back of the hotel.

On Tuesday Rudy and I headed out on a short ~79 mile ride to see what we could see, a nice loop from Nelson to Salmo to Castlegar and back to Nelson. 

Rudy spied a nice rest stop with a waterfall located about halfway from Nelson to Salmo.

A little further down the road on the way to Salmo we turned off to check out the little town of YMIR. There was not much to it other than the hotel, a fire station, and a nice picnic area by the river.

Rudy was bound and determined to get a picture of a bear or a moose, but this is as close as we came to that...

The largest 1 cent in Canada, located in Salmo. This is located directly across the highway from the Dragonfly Cafe which has really good food as we found out later.

A couple of pictures of the river and Castlegar from a rest stop along the highway

On Wednesday I decided to take a break from riding and spend the day exploring Nelson on foot. My first stop was the Visitors Center where I picked up information about the Architectural Heritage Walking Tour.  

The Nelson Court House built in 1909 is #3 on the tour. It was designed by F.M. Rattenbury the famous architect of B.C.'s Parliament buildings. The court house was built for $109,145.88 and the date stone on the building of 1908 is incorrect.

Thursday morning we got a late start and met some folks for breakfast at the Dragonfly Cafe. YUM! Then we all went on a ride around the area on mostly backroads, ~119 miles, with lots of dead ends and turning around and a little rain and strange breaks with people going shopping for shoes. Potty breaks I can understand, but shoe shopping??? I finally had enough and just returned to the campground to rest for a few minutes.

Later on I went down to the hotel for the 4:30pm photo shoot. The event planners had hired a photographer and sent him up in a helicopter to take pictures of all the bikes. Not everyone was back from riding for the day, but the pictures still show a good turnout!


All too soon Friday morning was upon us and it was time to leave. We decided to head north and take the Ferry at Balfour then drop down into Idaho. It was the first time I've been on a ferry with or without a motorcycle. It added some time to the trip but it was well worth the experience and it was free!

Could this be a calendar contender? I'm thinking yes. It looks like a money shot to me...

We stopped for a break at The Glass House located south of Boswell and Columbia Point in BC. It was built out of embalming fluid bottles by collected by David H. Brown after retiring from 35 years in the funeral business. I'm still kicking myself because I didn't take the time or pay the $10 Canadian to do the whole tour...

Welcome back to the US of A!

Rudy and I parted ways in Sand Point, ID... He went off on his great adventure and I headed home, stopping in Troutdale OR for the night at around 10pm. I got and early start the next morning and arrived home sometime around 8:00pm on Saturday the 25th, finishing a 2 day ~1237 mile ride. 

I had a great time. I really wish that I could have gotten more time off of work. I can't wait to go back to BC again sometime soon.

Trip total: ~2398 miles

TentSTOC IV Humboldt Redwoods SP June 16-18, 2011

I left the house Thursday at 6:30am to meet up with Rudy at the appointed rest stop meeting place at 7:00am. He was a few minutes late but we were officially on the way at about 7:25am. We were still early enough that traffic through San Francisco on a Thursday morning was not too bad and soon enough the bay area was nicely behind us. Vacation started!

We stopped in Willits just before 11:00am for an early lunch. Rudy got himself a new hat...

While we were there we ran into Bob from Fremont and we rode the rest of the way up together, stopping for a break at the One Log House tourist trap just south of Garberville. As you can see boys will be boys...

Once we arrived at the campground and finished getting all set up we rode down to the nearest market to pick up a few items to contribute to the dinner Carole was busy fixing at her and Mac's site. No one goes hungry when Carole is around!

After visiting for a while it was back to our campsite for a little camp coffee before crawling into my tent for the night. Yes, I can drink coffee and then sleep!

Mileage for the day: ~273 miles.

Friday morning we were treated to a nice camp breakfast provided by Carole and Mac. Biscuits, eggs, bacon... Yum! Then we were off to do a Lost Coast tour.

The route was beautiful but the roads sucked! There were several treacherous sections with gravel and there were lots of nice tight switchbacks. We all came through unscathed however and ended the ride with a lunch stop at the Eel River Brewing Company in Fortuna.

Rudy and I rode into Eureka to visit the AAA office for maps and then we stopped at the store to shop for the planned group carne asada dinner. It is amazing how much you can pack in and on an ST or two, we even brought back to big bundles of wood for the campfire.

Mileage for the day: ~146 miles.

Saturday morning we were all up and on the road to the RTE scheduled for 9:00am at the Samoa Cookhouse (except for Rudy who had an alergic reaction to something he ate and would not come out of his tent). There was a good turnout - about 22 people or so.

Several people were leaving after the RTE to ride up to WeSTOC in Nelson BC which was starting on Monday so we said goodbyes. Russ, a friend of Mac & Carole, and I decided to stop by the Oyster Festival in Arcata before returning to the campground. There were lots of booths selling oysters but we were not hungry at all. We walked around Arcata Plaza and window shopped and just watched all the different people. I took some pictures of the weird sculptures they have... here's one that we were trying to figure out what the heck it represented.

Then it was back to camp. It was still early in the day so I took the opportunity to go explore one of the trails and take some pictures that show the beauty of the area.

Mileage for the day: ~114 miles.
Sunday morning Rudy and I were up early, all packed up and on our way to WeSTOC by 7:00am.

Trip total: ~533 miles.

Additional photos located HERE.