Friday, May 22, 2015

Exploring Oregon, Pt. 1

I'm not too much of a reader. Knowing how to read isn't the issue, but rather I struggle dedicating enough time to the act. I enjoy it, but don't often fit it in to my daily routine. That said I've been slowly making my way through Blue Highways, by William Least Heat Moon. I'm sure it's a cliche that someone writing a motorcycle travel blog would have that book, but it's still fitting, and I find it a pleasurable read. My point is I came across a quote where a man said he was "hanging off the drop edge of yonder". He was of course referencing death, but I've grown pretty fond of the saying all the same. To me it isn't something so morose, but a reference to that place I'm always seeking on my KLR. That point in which the whole world seems to fall off and you find yourself riding into the void. Heading towards adventure driven by the curiosity of what lies around the next curve.

The list of places I want to explore is undoubtedly a long one, but I decided to dedicate my recent big trip to my home state of Oregon. There's so much country here and I've hardly scratched the surface. I wanted to ride the blue highways here because the idea of "yonder" isn't always so distant a place.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

DIY: Tool Tube Installation

Years ago a buddy in Seattle gifted me an old tool tube that had been on his Trans Alp and I've been sitting on it trying to sort out where to put it on my bike. A lot of folks just throw it on the front of their skid plate and call it a day. While that's certainly easiest I honestly hate the idea of it tied to the skid plate and my intuition tells me that's a horrible place for it anyway (seriously none of you people have had a large rock get kicked up and shatter at that very spot?!) So here's the solution I came up with after just a little fabrication...

Friday, May 15, 2015

Gear Review: Metzler Enduro 3 Sahara Tires

Up until this last fall I've been running a set of Metzler Tourance tires on my KLR and while they're a far cry from the stock tires on the KLR when it comes to off-road riding they have more than met my needs. They had been so good in fact I went through several sets of them over the years. The time finally came for a change. It's probably due to the addition of a more pavement-specific bike in my stable, but I felt the KLR needed to transition back to it's dirt roots. It was time for new shoes, and I bought the Metzler Enduro 3 Sarahas.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Dirty Sellwood

The bicycle shop I work for in Portland has a good relationship with another shop over in Hood River, Oregon and for two years running now we've been doing a bicycle ride between the two towns up over the side of Mt Hood. In 2013 we rode from Portland to Hood River and this last August we did the ride in reverse. I also decided to change things up and brought the moto intstead to run support for the cyclists.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Moto Coffee

I LOVE my coffee. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it an addiction, but a thorough enjoyment of the pleasures of riding motorcycles and sipping Joe. Next riding buddies, and a cold beer at the end of a ride, few things compliment motorcycles better than coffee. 

I've put together a list of some of my favorite ways to brew coffee out on a ride for your enjoyment. In no way do I claim to be an expert on the artful ways of making fine coffee (I’ll leave that to the rad folks at Stumptown Coffee Roasters, whose amazing coffee I enjoy on the daily). It also isn't a  list  about the lightest, most compact, recycled grounds, and minimalist brew methods, just so you know. And while it's not a complete list, I'm pretty happy with the options on it and think each is a very viable way to get your brew on while motoing about.

Riding motorcycles is already one of my favorite activities, and since I'm spoiling myself by going on tour anyway I like to kick it up a notch and make some damn fine coffee while I'm on the road. You better believe I can make room for a solid coffee setup in my ammo cans. Be it touring, camping, settling in at base camp, or sitting on the tailgate of your truck after a day at the track; brewing up some coffee is a nice way to jumpstart your day or reward yourself for a good one.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Olympic Peninsula Campsite Poaching

Ahhh, the Olympic Peninsula. The promised land of rugged beauty, epic peaks, and the stunning vistas to appreciate them all. I have a definitive love affair with the northwestern part of Washington. It's hard not to. Lucky me that I have a work event in Bellingham the first part of August, and as something that's becoming a bit of a tradition for me I dip out of work a few days early and ride my motorcycle up for a little camping and rallying before meeting up with my coworkers. Throw in the Dead Baby Downhill, Seattle's 16+ year running freakbike race and Party, and you know I had a damn good time.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Two Jakes are Better than One

Summer always seems to carry way over into fall this time of year in Portland. I'm ready for the rain to begin and the sun decides to hang out for another month. I'm definitely not complaining! There may be fewer daylight hours in the day, but I'm doing my best to take full advantage of the good riding weather while we have it.

So tonight my good friend Jake (we Jakes stick together) led me on a ride through the West Hills just outside of Portland.