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In 1983 I was working for the UK bike press when the VF750F was launched. I tested it and loved it. At the time I was racing enduro and could not afford to do that and run a road motorcycle.
Last year I got the chance to buy a pair of VF750 Interceptors for just £840 (US$1115). One was running but needed work and the other was in bits.
The complete bike needed new fork seals and bushes, new head bearings, new chain and sprockets, brake calipers stripping and overhauling with new seals etc, new tyres, oil leak from front valve cover fixing, and a full service.
Over here in the UK we have the excellent David Silver Spares who hold a lot of parts for all older Hondas, and what they don't have they try hard to get when asked.
t took me a couple of months of spare time in the workshop to get the complete bike roadworthy and I've been stunned by how good it is for a 34 year old machine. It's quite quick, it's comfortable and it handles really well on its new Bridgestone BT45s.
So what about the other one? Well the one thing the Interceptor has against it in my opinion is the weight, same as all other bikes of that era.
I figure that as much weight as possible shed - titanium wheel spindles, Dymag wheels, aluminium swingarm, etc. it will make a truly amazing bike for modern roads.
Yup, the desire may have lain dormant for 34 years, but I am well and truly hooked.
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Okay I've been naive. Two years ago I bought a VFR800 on eBay unridden and delivered by a reputable dealer. Turns out it's not firing on the rear left cylinder. Took it to an independent Honda guy who spent a week checking the bike over and is struggling to find the source of the problem. Mechanicals check out, apart from unbalanced butterfly valves, electric looms all good, new plugs, injectors all ultrasonically cleaned and swapped around to eliminate a dud, no issues. Coils too are all fine. Compression to cylinders all good. Turns out bike was imported from the USA an 04 bike brought here in 06 with low mileage. Really clean condition albeit with the wrong headlight. Oh how I curse myself for parting with my gen 5. Answers on a postcard please. All I really want now is an fjr1300 to soothe my VFR800 vtec woes but no one wants it surprise surprise.
my 6th gen 2002 vfr died on me on a road trip a few months back and just know took it to my local honda dealer for diagnose/ repair they said my rectifier was the problem plus plugs,battery while troubleshooting. While they where troubleshooting my instrument cluster was fried and power commander now mind u before hand my bike ran for years. Go to get my bike a month later, shop was backlogged + short on technicians, now they tell me at idle only three clyinders are firing and only when u ride the fourth kicks but everything checks out ok on all tests,compression,spark,fuel etc.. mind u again paid $765 already for labor and parts but still not running right?
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Hi Guys and Gals,
So spoke to my nearest Honda motorcycle dealer Rick Gills Motorcycles and Paul from their parts and service was very helpful. Turns out my bike hasn't had the recall work carried out as shown by a lack of punch/stamp below the J on the head stock VIN stamp.
As shown below.
There should be a dot punched/stamped there below the J if the recall work has been carried out.
So if any of the Aussie 6th geners are reading that's what to check if you have a bike with a VIN between JH2RC46U*2M400005 to JH2RC46U*5M700241. (Don't know if the mark is standard across the world/regions).
So the part(s) have been ordered and I'll get a call in a week or 2 to book it in for the work.
On the exhaust front I got some great feedback (for once ) with Gumtree. A couple of interstate riders willing to help out but shipping would have defeated the purpose of keeping the cost down.
Ended up getting a pair off of a great bloke named Simon locally on Monday for a 100 buckaroos. Local exhaust shop said $25 a side to weld the ends back on so I got to it last night as shown.
I marked approximately 6mm in from the centre of the weld to cut with the hack saw.
Sorry about the photo quality.
A bit of persuasion and BFI and I got it out..
Got the other side done and called it a night.
In total it took about 1 hour and a half and a few beers.
I dropped the cans off at the exhaust shop this morning, as they are flat out and my job is no worth much to them it could take a day or 2. I'll be annoyed if I can't try them by the weekend.
I'll try to get some audio recording as well to put up.
Thanks for taking the time to check it out.
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Heard nothing but good reviews about these mods for the 6 Gen so I decided to try them. Its been about a month now of some hard serious riding and I gotta say I love it. They really make the bike seem different (in a good way). I was skeptical at first, but totally glad I did it.
Here's the link. Do yourself a favor and try it.
I've been off motorcycles sice 2010 kinda rusty on skills & new stuff. Suggestion anyone??
My week in review Monday bought 2000 VFR from Sasha in North Carolina located shipper! So far so good! Tuesday totaled 2011 Caterpillar dumptruck & walked away with a concussion left rotater cuff (again) & a few tender spots! While at home I decided to order a few things for the VFR Stainless Steel header from Delkevic VFR has Staintune slip-on already looking at stainless brake lines anyone?? Sending fork tubes and 929 rear Shock to Jamie! Thanks to Sasha all around great guy who sold me the yellow beauty for a great price IMHO and after the deal he threw in a Battery Tender & shop Manual and a few other parts!Thanks Sasha!
I'll upload a few pix of the VFR and the Cat dumptruck when I figure out how not feeling to good due to a feeeewwww tender spots! Have to pass out a few well deserved kudos to the Big Spring TX VA well done folks! Dr. Kim & Ugert Care at the VA crew are the best! Thanks RN Tony!! Also my very good great friend Steve P!. God blessed me with friends!! If anyone doesn't beleive in God they have never wrecked a semi truck! When the truck came to a stop I was on my knees!!
Very carefully still sore I removed the battery from the old CB & put it on to charge. I need to replace it by summer. Again suggestions? All of my riding gear has shrunk since Iraq, Katrina, Haiti. Need some Jacket 48 Pants Large. I have excellent used Vanson stuff and would love to trade if possible.
Saturday 05/2015 The VFR came in from Sasha! Better than he said! I knew from talking to in it would be good but I didn't think it would be this good! Still to sore to get my leg over the saddle!
So you wanna buy a used bike huh? How many bikes have you checked out/bought in the past? The following is just MY initial list for things to check when looking at a used bike...at a dealer or private individual. This list is NOT exhaustive--it was initially stream of conciousness, so the order is not necessarily optimal either. There is a wealth of knowledge on how to buy a new bike. Usually a Google search on "how to buy a used motorcycle" is a pretty good place to start...that said, it won't get you here!
Basically, the strategy I take is that you put a not to exceed price on a bike you are going to RIDE (collecting bikes is a different story and these "rules" don't necessarily apply when you're insane about collecting) and don't EVER buy one for more than that...the reason is that another one will always show up somewhere--oh and it will probably be in better shape than the one you're currently inspecting. NEVER be desperate! YOU are the buyer and YOU have cash...cash is king! So operate from a position of abundance, you are in control. Be fair, be kind, don't be a dick...but be in control. I used to be an Air Force Officer and this approach works well for buying cars and getting groups of people to do what you want as well...if you are needy, desperate and a dick...you will be hard pressed to get what you must. Above all, be honest--that includes not leaving out key information (especially if you're selling).
It's amazing how keeping your side of the street clean ends up in positive motorcycle karma! Beware, honest, straightforward thoughtful, smart buyers tend to scare about 30% of the people...you don't reallly want a bike from those people...So here's my "how to list to buy a used motorcycle". This is aimed toward the VFR rider, but you can use 90% of it for any modern Japanese bike, maybe 85% for standard or cruisers.
BEFORE YOU GO:
Just for precaution's sake, always leave a trip plan with a friend or family member...whether you're riding, looking at a bike, hiking or on business. That way, if something should go wrong on the way there or back someone knows your plan--heck you may just run out of gas in an area with no cell coverage...or your cell battery died along with your charger.
Taking a buddy is a good way to split up tasks so you can be objective AND observant. What is the owner nervous about when you ask questions or poke around on the bike? People will give you clues. Also, a friend can keep you from being too "rosy" or too down on one thing and help you evaluate the overall value of the bike that you're inspecting.
Before you go--let the owner know you want the bike cold--so you can see how it starts and runs when cold. Get permission beforehand to take a test ride. Get the background from the owner before you get there and ask him again when you arrive--note any differences, if any, in the stories--significant ones can be a clue to whether you're getting the whole story or not.
1. Ask for the service history...if the guy doesn't take it to the dealer for this...ask for his log. If he doesn't keep one, that is one nock against the bike...no records means no proof of maintenance...not always bad, but not a positive. Check the VIN and see if this is a California model or not (will have evap canister on the bike as well...important iif you live in Cali I imagine. Write down the VIN and I think you can ask your insurance company or the dealer to see the history of the bike (if it has been crashed--reported--or not).
2. Bike should be COLD when you walk up...if not, then he either jumped it or got it started and warmed up so it would start easier (the first time)...this isn't normally a problem with an FI bike, more often with bikes that have carbs...but still...it is a potential sign.
3. Check the color of the oil level and color of the oil through side viewing window (rt side engine case ahead of the clutch housing) with bike on center stand...oil level should be between two lines--if too low, take a note...will probably be darker as well. If too high--above the second line -- that's definitely not good either.
4. Bring some hex wrenches and peel off the left side fairing (ask first) and look at the coolant level, cold. It should have coolant in between the two lines. After you start it up and get it to temp it should rise somewhat.
5. if you have a Volt Meter, take the seat off. Check to see if the factory tools are all there...and check the cold voltage on the battery. >12.2V but that's not enough. After you start the bike the voltage (DC) should be >13.5 at 2500 rpm and less than 14.8V at 5000 rpm. Here's the fault finding guide link from electro-sport...https://www.google.c...102537793,d.dmo
6. Let the bike warm up at idle for at least 5 minutes...the temperature should be >175F...if its a hot day let it idle for 20-25 minutes and the temp should go up to 220...the fan should kick on...if temp goes above 225 and no fan you have an issue (the displayed temp is wrong or the fan switch is not working or there is an open circuit in the fan circuit...)..either way you need to get the bike to temp and make sure the fan comes on...you can rev the bike safely after 5 minutes and it is up to temp to get the temps up...
7. if it is at temp, check the weep hole under the water pump to see if any coolant is coming out...use a flashlight, see if the weep hole is not gunked up first...if it is, un-plug it with something small...if there is fluid coming out the shaft seal on the water pump is shot...this is not good but repairable.
8. You should also ask for a test ride--if possible. Be prepared to leave your car keys or, something to secure the fact that you might ride off with the bike. Don't push it--you don't know IF there's something wrong or not. Start slowly and act like it is an MSF course...go through the gears, do some braking to a stop, go down through the gears...work up to Emergency stop conditions. Eventually get up to full throttle upshifts, but don't push top speed (it's not your bike--you're just making sure it isn't a pile of broken bolts). Wear your gear--ATGATT! Make sure your insurance will cover this (call before you test ride!) if something goes wrong.
9. Look for crash damage to the fairings...cracks or obvious repairs...better if you can pull off the side fairings and check them and the seat off to see if the rear has been repaired. all the fairings should line up easily...all the fasteners should be there...and should be factory...even behind the front wheel in front of the front cylinders...these little clips are a pain, sometimes we replace them with similar types...not too concerning, but they should all be there.
10. Look at the engine cases to see if they have been ground down. Look for oil leaks/fluid leaks under the bike. Look at the oil plug and oil filter see if there's any leaking oil.
11. look at the bar ends...are they stock or aftermarket?...if aftermarket, ask to see the factory ones...they should not be ground down...a scuff is OK, ground down means laid down...not just a tip over. Look for dents in the tank...Look at the front turn signals...cracks around them means they were either crashed and broken or tipped over. If they are replaced with aftermarket, ask to see the stock ones ("in case you want to put them back on") if they are scuffed or not there they were probably broken in a crash.
12. with bike on center stand and facing a garage door, check out the headlight pattern...I've seen it where one was higher than the other...menaing the front fairing stays were bent ...you should be able to see this also if the front windscreen and fairing are closer to one handlebar or the other...as you sit on the bike with the front wheel straight ahead.
13. Bring a string...and do the alignment method on the front and rear wheels...with an SSA (single sided swingarm) if these are not aligned, the frame is bent (http://www.motorcycl...wheel-alignment).
14. Look at the chain and rear sprocket...if the teeth are worn, ask when it was replaced...if no records assume you need to replace front, rear and chain....this is at least $200 negotiating point. Same with tires, used tires are OK, new better, if they are at the wear bars, it is a negotiating point worth at least $300 to $400.
15. Look for rust at any of the subframe welds...to me, this indicates it was bent, cracked the paint and is now weakened.
16. Look under the seat and see if he has any switched relays for accessories...is there a fuse for the relay? How are the electrical connections, are they professionally done or look like an amateur slice and dice job?
17. Look at the brake fluid color and the clutch fluid color...take the tops off and see if there's gunk in the resevoir...should be light or color of honey at most...brown is bad, gray or black is horrible. front and rear rotors should show some wear but not big ridges or gouges...a little rust is OK if it sits outside, but should wipe off ...lots of pitting is bad. The pads front and rear should be able to be inspected with a flashlight...should have more than a 16th and near an 8th at least...if it looks like its almost flat means they are way gone...need not only replaced, but you need to check the caliper bores as well and maybe refresh. Have someone push down on the rear of the bike and get the front wheel off the ground...spin it. it should spin freely, you should hear the brake pads lightly sing on the rotors, but it should be fairly even and very light...wheel should spin a few rotations...not stop quickly or hear the singing pulse. if it sings, means the rotor carriers are bent most likely, an indication of a crash or someone was hamfisted changing the front tire...not a good sign. same with the rear wheel and bike in neutral, cept it won't spin as much because of the chain drag...so listen to the rear brake for dragging caliper...should not drag too much...and have some meat on the pads.
There's plenty more you could check, but that's some of what I try to go over...if you can get a test ride there's more to do/feel...but I would ride it without earplugs...you should hear the Pair system flapper opening and closing when you start out and come to a stop...the chain should sound smooth when idling and clutch in...taking off shouldn't be snatchy. It should snick into second gear, third etc...easily. braking should be straight.
So the best tool and tip I have here is tip numero cero #0: Be prepared--do your homework on the bike and it's foibles and idiosyncrasies--plusses & minuses AND make a checklist of things to BRING and DO when you get there! Have a plan for how much you will knock off the price or three prices for Excellent, OK and bad bikes! Don't vary...be prepared to walk away and have no regrets when you do...there's always a bike in a shed somewhere else that's better cared for than this one and it probably cost less!
Have Fun and be safe and do good, that's what its all about!
Sept 28, 2015
Hey Everyone!! New guy here,purchased my 2003 VFR800 Interceptor a couple of weeks ago with 15k on it. So far I've had to put on new levers,new windshield and new mirrors with turn signals integrated into them. My seat has a rip in it ,so I'm going to cover it soon with something different from a local leather store. Can't say I've done much riding on it just yet as I'm still in the, "Making it mine" phase. Didn't have the luggage brackets,so I'm selling my hard shell bags. My first bike was a 99 Honda CBR600 some 8 years ago and in between then and now I've owned a large variety of bikes from Harleys to Spyder.I love to ride and love to work on them. Hope there are some guys in my area that I can ride with!!
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Oh, my Lord, it's hot down here. Anyway...To the chase! It's a given that you have to seal every single part of the engine, before you attack it with bead blast. I did that, and then ground off all the cast marks, just so it'll look great, once back in the bike....Or once the bike is rebuilt around the engine, to be more precise. My thoughts, for this week, as i've been blasting in 42C (107F)??? The oil cooler has an insane amount of plumbing, to get it to where it lives. I have no idea why, to be honest....Therefore, i'll be moving it to a better place, and making it bigger. It'll be directly in front of the crankcase, from now on. I'm starting to see a COG drama unfolding, aswell. I'll be moving the rear two exhausts to the left hand side of the seat cowl, and also moving the battery up there, in the center of the tail, behind my bum. The tail will be a semi monocoque, but I don't think i'll have shed enough weight, even with the relocation of all of the crap that lives up there, and the sacrifice of the rest of the tail framework, to rebalance the bike. I've looked into having two 6V batteries hooked in parallel, but I still don't think i'll be able to put them anywhere better. Maybe a bit, but not enough to really warrant all of the extra wiring that would go with making it happen. Capacitors? Too hard basket.... Leave it where it is? No can do. That real estate's now taken by the back two exhausts.
I'm starting to get the impression that you all think this is "pie in the sky' kinds stuff, and I don't blame any of you for thinking that. So, in a nutshell, here's the deal, as far as the redesign of this bike. I'd love to call it a rebuild, but it's not strictly a 'rebuild', by any means. I bought this bike to fix and ride, but I was fooling myself. I've never been very good at just fixing stuff. I can spot a design shortcut a mile away, and this bike has a few of them, to say the least. It's well built.....Don't get me wrong. It's built to a price, and a strict design regime, though. Honda, nor any other manufacturer, makes any money by hand finishing, or using anything better than the material that will fulfill the task. Nor will they get anywhere by making something that's out of reach of their perceived audience. It's a fact of life. I use to own, in a different life, a Ducati 1098S. Now there's a bike that doesn't hold back....Price? What's money? Technology? Yeah...., put a bit more optical fibre into it.....For $38,000.00 they'd want to push the technological boundaries. This bike...No. You have to do it yourself, if you want something special. And that's what i'm going to do. It'll be no match for a 1098S, but it'll be special, none the less. I'd like to hear your thoughts....Good and bad. Nothing ever happened, by good men staying silent. I'm looking forward to some sort of feedback..........Good or not so good.
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Short version. Ride to work and back on the Daytona last Friday. OMG IT FELT AWESOME to be back in the bike.
so I spent the week testing my sitting position on the Daytona. It was so tempting with it there in the garage. Doc hadn't given me the all clear but Wednesday afternoon I started her up and headed out. I got down the drive and then pulled my leg up to the peg. That didn't work and there were a lot of weird aches around the knee. I let my leg hang and wobbled back to the garage, defeated.
But I couldn't leave it there so the next day I got back on and spent about twenty minutes riding around the neighborhood. The knee is really stiff but not painful.
This gave me the confidence to ride in on Friday. The ride in was great. A sunny fresh morning on the open road (work is halfway to the next town along some country roads). I stretched the leg out a couple of times.
The way home was more sore - enough that I was nervous I had ripped something open. I got home safely and hoped I hadn't set things back at all.
Saturday I saw the Doc and was given the all clear to use my leg fully. So no harm done.
It is obvious that I really need to work the leg or it's going to lose a big chunk of range of motion. I have already restarted my fitness and will get back on the bike and the push bike to sort out the leg.
Being back on the bike is so amazing :)
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WITHOUT MIGUEL !!!
My brother flew out last year from Delaware to Colorado for a week of dirt bike and street riding. We had a great time but had a major glitch. I managed to blow up my Yamaha FZ1 ECU 2 days before he flew out (long story). I could not find one in time so I had to borrow a bike so we could do the 4 day Colorado ride we had planned. A good buddy of mine up in Denver had a Ninja 650 he let us use and I returned it with a new set of tires as thanks for the loaner. My brother rode the Ninja and I rode my VFR. We had a blast and decided to something again this year.
A few weeks before he came out he called and said “think big” this year. So about a week before he got here we decided on a Colorado to the California coast ride. I had everything ready, the FZ1 and VFR were packed, oil changed, etc. He called and said he was on the way to the airport in Philly, everything was going according to plan. It was about 2pm on Friday and our ride was going to start the next morning. I hopped on the VFR to go fill up the tank and only got a few blocks away when my radar detector started to glitch and die. Been down this road before, I knew I had a charging problem.
I get back in the garage and sure enough no charging on the battery. I had mentioned to my brother a few weeks back that I should get a new stator just in case. This would be my third bad stator at 92,000 miles, but I did the math and figured the current one only had about 15K miles on it and I should be fine. The first two lasted around 30-40K miles each.
I tear off the ride side and unsolder the yellow wire connections. 0 ohms to ground on all legs…OMG…I am SCREWED, and can’t believe this happened two years in a row right before our big ride. I call everywhere in Colorado, no stock, and I don’t have time to have one shipped from online. I called my brother and he was at the gate ready to board….”Greg, you are not going to believe this”…At first he thought I was joking for sure.
Checkmate….maybe… I texted Miguel who just happened to be off that day after a night shift. “Miguel, I might need a really big favor, give me call when you can.” Miguel called about a half hour later and I explained the situation. “Can I borrow your bike?....where ya going?....California..for nine days…..OK, I will go get it ready for you”.
My wife just happened to get off early that day and about an hour after discovering the deep fried stator I was in Miguel’s garage with my riding gear. Another miracle when I looked at the tires, he had recently put a new set of PR4s on so the bike was ready to roll! I promised to take good care of the Veefalo and would put a new set of tires on or pay for a new set if these came back with some life.
I had ridden the Veffalo a few times when we swapped bikes out on a ride, but never more than an hour or so. He showed me the heated grips (which turned out to be extremely useful) and gave me all his wiring so I could hook up my stuff. I got back and started packing up the Veefalo and got my radar working…I was ready to go!
I had to drive up from the Springs to Denver to pick up my brother who got in around 9pm. I made him suffer all the way home until I opened the garage door there sat the Veefalo and the FZ1….WHOOT !
Early the next morning we were off to Salt Lake for the first leg, 552 miles. The 1200 was very comfortable and I was glad for the tires. It absolutely poured the last 120 miles into Salt Lake. We went by the seat of our pants and made no reservations anywhere, just finding hotels each night, which was never a problem.
Sunday- Salt Lake to Truckee, CA – 549 miles. We stayed at my high school buddies house, who would join us on his Connie14 later in the week.
Monday- Truckee north, then into Red Bluff. We had skipped Lassen Volcanic park and calculated that we actually had enough time to make it from Red Bluff to Eureka that same day. So off we went on the famous route 36, and a 142 miles of corners. I had always thought Colorado was the best…maybe for scenery and some great roads…but nothing like this….it was truly 142 miles corners, elevation changes, and hardly any traffic. Veefalo loved the bigger sweepers but was a bit of handful in the really tight stuff. Fun for sure, just had to muscle it bit more than my sixth gen. But nobody heard me complaining!! I was so happy to be there. We made it into Eureka and got a hotel.
Tuesday was Eureka to Yreka. Rt. 299 was also superb climbing away from the coast. Awesome sweepers and great views. We stopped for lunch in Weaverville and then rt. 3 up to Yreka. My buddy met us up there and three of us were off to Ft. Bragg the next morning.
We diverted a bit again from the master plan and took Gazelle Callahan road out of Yreka and got on Callahan-Cecilville road. That road was awesome, until we got to Cecilville, then it turned into a Goat Trail shelf road from hell about half way to 96…..all paved but very narrow. We jumped on 96 south to Willow Creek, then 299 back to Eureka and down 101 to the Avenue of the Giants, and then Rt. 1 down to Ft. Bragg. Route 1 down to the coast was very technical and fun, then suddenly you break out to the coast….spectacular….We got a great hotel in Ft. Bragg with rooms overlooking the shoreline. If I did it all over again I would have taken one day completely off the bike and stayed an extra day in Ft. Bragg. I really liked that town.
Thursday- Ft. Bragg, Skaggs Springs, Vacaville. Skaggs was awesome, but too short!!! The Veefalo had the most fun on this section and simply devoured the corners. Had both knees down through this section…YEA BABY! Next through the “Valley” and to my buddies other house in Vacaville where we had a great dinner and maybe just a little partying.
Friday- Vacaville to Ely, NV. Took 50 into Nevada and just laid down miles across the high desert. Again, fantastic scenery like we had the entire trip. You could see forever and might not have a corner for 20+ miles. Yep, it was time to wick it up…but who would do it first….I noticed my brother dropped back a bit…and then ZOOM as he flew past in the left lane. That FZ1 Two Brothers pipe was screaming its beautiful sound. I start to catch up…110…120…135….145 (Don’t tell Miguel)…The Veefalo was rock solid at speed, but we only stayed there a minute or so…OK, we got that out of our system.
Saturday- Ely to Grand Junction. We decided to skip Moab so we would have an easy day back home on Sunday. On Sunday we headed back over Independence pass and back to home to Woodland Park. It was our shortest day and we were home by noon. I had time to give the Veefalo a good wash so I could get it back to Miguel the following day. Those PR4s still had some life left and I really liked the tires. I had 100% confidence and never felt any slips.
Total miles in nine days: 3,507
Thanks again Miguel….that was a huge favor!! Next year the plan is for my brother to come the to Summit with us...and then Miguel might have something big planned for us after that....
The desert gets cold….I ran those heated grips for hours each day..
The Veefalo WILL power wheelie in first gear, as found out when I did a quick highway merge in CA.
The FZ1 gas mileage sucks…I was getting a few 44 mpg runs on the Veefalo….and only 36 on the FZ1
Never ever go on a big ride (6th gen) without a spare stator and RR (although my RR has never failed)..
Signal Dynamics voltage monitor LED installed
Need heated grips...
My name is Oliver and i live in Austria/Europe.
I am welder in a big Concern name Engel Austria.
I want to know everything about " get a better VF ".
It`s not the best bike in the world, but i´m lovin it.
I wanna share some pics about my experiences.
Hope the pics can help someone.
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It was that unusual sound that made me look out of the window. I couldn't tell what bike it was at the time and the guy ridding it seemed to be far to young to even own a bike of this size.
The next day I walked passed it from a distance and thought to myself that this is one of those VFR750's I was reading about last week. It looks nice I thought and that was it for a very long time.
A long time later , 4 weeks later in fact, I looked at the bike from my front door and realised the thing was just about to drop onto its side. Placing your bike on its side stand for a long period of time is not the best thing to do. The tarmac was eating the stand and I saved the bike from falling. I was more concerned about the bike hurting someone if it had fallen. I re-positioned the bike and took a close look at it. You didn't need to be a detective to tell that something wasn't quite right here.
Broken bits of fairing, broken seat lock and cut ignition wires. That guy stole it and left it there I thought to myself.
Well I reported it to the police and we had a chat. Apparently it was reported abandoned on many occasions in several different areas . Well that was that and I left it to the police.
About a week later I found myself phoning the police again to report youngsters taking parts off it. A mirror and a foot peg has gone missing and they where trying to take the whole thing. Again I had a chat with police on the phone and they were happy for me to look after it and wheel it into my garden until they located the owner. I gave my name and address and got a reference number for my call and conversation with a verbal agreement of intention of keeping it safe for the real owner. My phone conversation ended with the police officer advising me to claim it for myself. He didn't feel as though we will have much luck in finding the owner and I was told to send off a V62 form . I did just that and paid £26 and 6 weeks later I received the logbook in my name.
I waited about 1 year before trying to fix it and there where many things wrong with the bike.
Fork oil seals leaking, clutch ring broken into about 8 pieces , mirrors and foot pegs, handlebar end weights, new locks needed for ignition and fuel cap.
Steering head bearings clean and adjustment. Engine needed taking out for inspection of clutch debris.
It started no problem and I continued to work at it.
Its a lovely bike to ride and I really enjoy being on it. I use it all the time now and more than my Suzuki GSX750f.
It cost me £300 in total to put right but I got many cheap parts off Cheese bay and I am chuffed.
My Free VFR. How cool is that.
Been awhile since I've done any kind of ride report. Actually, this is more of a comment or sighting than it is a report. I had hoped to meet some fellow VFRD'ers in one of the greatest riding states available to us...Arkansas. Unfortunately, some last minute job details delayed my launch so I opted for plan B. A few local friends were doing a leisurely jaunt up to Oklahoma and then Arkansas for a bit of moto-camping so I decided to just tag along with them.
It's probably a good thing since my riding skills are a bit rusty. Anyway, we left East Texas on Saturday with plans to run the Indian Highway and then stop in Talihina for lunch. I was thoroughly pleased to find that several roads leading to the Indian Highway are now paved and paved well I might add. The sweepers are a blast at speed but apparently they've had some problems with the tighter corners.
Once over the mountain we headed for Pam's Hateful Hussy Diner in the "big metropolis" of Talihina. Good place to eat for sure with it's cowboy memorabilia on one wall and indian memorabilia on the opposite wall along with several humorous aphorisms.
We eventually made our way to Magazine Mountain in Arkansas where we camped at Cove Lake Campgrounds. Six of us camped at a fairly secluded site right next to the lake for a whopping total of $10 including clean showers, level tent sites, and all the free wood we could burn.
Sunday morning brought beautiful sunshine and much warmer temps. I led our group up 123 to Mt. Judea, 374 to Jasper, 74 to Ponca, and 21 back to Clarksville and eventually on back to Mena for a late lunch and then our campsite at Queen Wilhemina Lodge.
This was just a small portion of the great roads that Arkansas has to offer and brings me back to the title of my report. Perhaps there was a rally from another VFR group/forum but I saw a red 5th Gen, a red 6th Gen, an 07 RWB, a grey 6th Gen and two 1200's(One of which belongs to a VFRD member) all within a couple hundred miles.
Might as well add a dirty, bug covered, asphalt 04 to the list. Sure was good to get some fresh air and kill a few bugs.
Saw an article while Southwest Air a couple days ago, they were looking for same day photos, of exact opposite locations..example was snow skiing at somewhere and waterskiing all on the same 24 hour period...
I was thinking a photo op at South Lake Tahoe, then ride to Bad Water Basin , Death Valley National Park.
Anyone interested, looking at December/January time frame....shoot me an email....dadofseven@ cox.net
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It was the best of time, it was the worst of times....
It was the best of times because we were still in the afterglow of the 10th Annual TexasMac Memorial Ride.
It was the worst of time because MiniCarver's past year of work on his 5th gen to fit a 7th gen tail as well fully upgrade the suspension, lights, and electrical had been destroyed at TexasMac. He had managed to drop it on both sides but it was done in on Friday by a very close friend.
MiniCarver had purchased a 4th gen from Brian (MidlifeVFR) just prior to TexasMac so to get MiniC back on the road, we were planning on flying Mrs Carver up to NY to visit a dear classmate. Then MiniC and I would double up on the ST1300 to NY, rendezvous with Mrs. Carver and the three of us would ride the two V4s back to GA. This is when Timmy suggested that Rice had a bike in the box that he might part with. Dmitry (Rice) lives in NJ so if we were going go that route, it would only make sense to pick up the 4th gen from Brian in a truck.
When Timmy heard that we would be traveling to NY to get the 4th gen even if we couldn't swing a deal for the bike in a box as a headstart to rebuilding the 5th gen, then he casually asked if we might need a place to stay for the night in southern Maryland.
That sounded like it sure would cut the drive to NY down to two manageable days so we thought, why not? Might be good to see Timmy in his element. He then suggested that since we were heading that way, perhaps if he purchase KPerham's RC51 that we might be able to ride up with that in the back of our truck, since we were heading that way anyway.
That sounded like an even better idea, so I asked Timmy what he had planned to deliver the track bike to Yoshi that he had found a couple months earlier, when Yoshi posted this http://www.vfrdiscussion.com/forum/index.php/topic/74019-talk-me-out-of-this-vtr250/page-2
Surprisingly Timmy didn't have a plan, so I contacted Yoshi and he had no plan either. But he did have several bikes that he needed to get rid of before he could accept the track bike from Timmy. So that part of the plan was no go, we would deliver the RC51 to Maryland, then head up to NY to get the 4th gen and stop in NJ on the way home for the bike in a box if we could reach a deal with Dmitry.
A few days later, Yoshi calls to let me know that he has been able to move a couple of the bottle-neck bikes blocking his delivery of the CBR and that he would take us up on our offer of delivery. Now the plan was starting to gel...KPerham even called me from his dad's hospital room to ask me to post this little nugget http://www.vfrdiscussion.com/forum/index.php/topic/74884-should-kperham-sell-his-rc51-to-timmy-the-cop/
It sure felt like the plan was coming together. If we could get MiniC's rashed clutch cover off before the deadline, we could even drop that off with Seb for the clear window treatment while we worked on putting the 5th gen back on the road. It was looking pretty good.
So Timmy makes the deal with Kevin, we make the deal with Dmitry, and we plan the day to leave, weather looking good. Kevin does a final sayonara ride on the beastly RC51 and stops by the Carver Estate...I take him home on the truck and we load everything RC related into the truck...a full set of track plastics, spare tank, Marvic wheels, stock and Yoshimura exhaust, numerous brake rotors, quite a bit of additional stuff. I head back to Casa Carver and we plan to leave around noon on Sunday...with an historic Honda at your fingertips and 3 or 4 days of slab in a truck staring you in the face what would you do?
That's right, take it up the street for brief spin...
Can you tell whether he is leaving or back from a ride?
The smile gives it away!
So we load it up and head out, nice sunny day, a good ride ahead, we get a text from Roofie Dr (Matt) to see if we want to stop in Greenville area for a bite to eat, absolutely. He is riding his 6th gen over and maybe wants to sit on the bike or harass Timmy about hijacking it en route..
Not even out of Georgia and the rain starts...
and continues for entire ride into Maryland.
We pour out of the truck at Timmy's house just after midnight. He has still party favors and decorations laying around from hosting a block party? or perhaps just bribing the neighborhood with some Sangria to put up with another bike in the stable, only louder and more fun to twist the throttle on...So we get the truck unloaded and grab some sleep.
You can barely make out the reflection of two Staintunes in secureity building #3 at the Steffes home.
In the morning (after a few conference calls for work) we begin to load out the CBR headed for Yoshi in Cleveland.
Looking good, no rain yet.
I do have a fondness for the Miniceptor and couldn't resist tossing my leg over the bike Timmy had resurrected but was unable to bring to TxMac...I could not suffer the rearsets for long no matter how sweet they look.
As we get in the truck and head out, we notice that Mrs Steffes has hidden a few goodies in the cab while the boys were goofing around. we have some snacks and beverages for the road ahead...just good people here on VFRD, no doubt about it.
MiniC has not been to DC before so we detour slightly through The District and take a peep around, I really like Potbelly Subs but the closest one to me in Georgia is either when I travel to Dallas or DC or when I get to our corporate office in Chicago. I am trying to remember where the one is near the JW Marriott near the White House...
So we roll through DC's Chinatown...
and past The People's House before deciding that we really aren't that hungry yet and need to get on the road as the rain has started to fall again.
I don't recall the name of this scenic highway but I think it was George Washington Memorial Parkway and the pull off we took overlooks the Potomac river just above the Potomac Heritage Trail and looking down on DC from a pretty good height...very beautiful area.
Part I...more to come.
During the beginning of March 2013 I decided to enter the annual Western Cape Motorcycle Endurance Rally. The organizers send you a list of checkpoints (18 printed pages). You then choose which checkpoints to visit. Each checkpoint gives you a certain amount of points. A photo has to be taken at each checkpoint to prove you were there. Essentially you then choose your own route. There is a start point where everyone meets and then everyone goes their own way. The event runs for 8 hours and then everyone has to be at the last checkpoint to hand in their scorecards. I did a total of 650km and ended 9th out of 19 bikes. My VFR even did a stretch of dirt road of about 90 kms without a problem!
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Very new to your site and i need to ask a question:
I have a VFR 800 2007 model which is fitted with the under seat Two Brothers Exhaust System, however only one slipon is connected. Can someone please let me know of have a sketch of how to connect the other without losing power?
Sunday around 4:30 the phone rang and it was my friend Greg calling to see if I was up for a ride on Monday as the weather was going to be great and he had several vacation days left to use this year. Knowing that I start my new job with Sherwin Williams on Thursday, Greg knew I was probably able to enjoy the day on the bike. When asked my very first response was "Deals Gap?" "I've never been..." Greg replied. He was looking for a day ride but not for what was about to transpire. We agreed on the destination as I promised him we could make it there and back without freezing or getting killed. What we didn't know until well into our ride was how wonderful the trip was to be.
We rode US25E to the Cumberland Gap and then on to Morristown and Newport TN. If your heading to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park from I-75 north of Lexington, KY let me explain that you can enjoy some really nice riding from Corbin, KY to Gatlinburg via US25E. The route is all four lane from that point on but winds through the Cumberland mountains of eastern Kentucky and Tennessee and allows cyclists an opportunity to be entertained by good curves and beautiful views of mountains and lakes. And the route only adds about 30 minutes verses taking the slabs of I75 and I40. From Newport TN you take 321 right into Gatlinburg and bypass the mess of Sevierville and Pigeon Forge.
Greg and I stopped in Gatlinburg at Calhoun's for a BBQ sandwich. Then we were on our way through the national park towards the Foothills Parkway and Deals Gap. To my surprise it was all deserted. I've never gotten to really ride the great roads on the park due to traffic which normally prevents speeds in excess of 25mph. Willing to risk a ticket, we opened the throttle a bit and really enjoyed the Little River Road.
The Foothills was totally empty and provided a great pass! Deals Gap also... totally empty less a small group of state workers clearing trees in one small section and a pack of about six GapRats and Motards who, like ourselves just couldn't pass up a great day! They were much more LOCAL than Greg and I and were pretty much amazed we would make the 465 mile round trip for a few passes. OH... but what a few passes!! To get that road completely free of traffic and enforcement... that's pretty much priceless.
Here is a video of the Little River Road pass in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Like you've never seen it!
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I have not been to the Greenhorn highway all summer, the road to Bishops castle - its always fun railing the turns on that fast sweeper road, then the tighter stuff down to Wetmore. I met up with reddog in Woodland Park and we checked out the sky and thought well maybe we can go around Pikes Peak to a turn off at Twin Rocks and avoid the angry looking clouds sitting over Pikes Peak. We got lucky and missed most of the rain. Heading south on High Park road we saw a rare site, motorcycles holding up cars! We figured it was a new rider and sure enough it was a woman on a metric crusier and her husband not far behind riding 15 below the speed limit - of course in a section with no sight lines for at least a mile, we had to pass 3 cars and 2 bikes.
Reddog was saying over the blue tooth sena communicators they should pull off - but honestly I am sure she was so white knucked kung fu grip on the handle bars she probably had no idea there were cars behind her! I did not mind too much cause I know the road well and knew we were going to be into a passing zone soon enough.
Then over the back road to Cripple Creek we were soon on hwy 50 - Reddog was astonished at how bad they messed up that road with tar snakes, the hill down to the Arkansas River was so full of tar snakes it was like riding over a slip and slide water park as wide as the road. It was awful - sections we did over the years at a 100 plus are now very dangerous and not advisable to ride much over the speed limit if even that.
Lunch was a bacon cheese burger with weird maple syrup flavored bacon? It sort of ruined the burger which was very tasty but the maple syrup was just too much. Hit the spot though after we both peeled that stuff off. Then back on the road to Westcliff where we finally got some rain, just enough to clean the bugs off the visor. They dont call them the wet mountains for nothin!
Then soon we were pushing the speed up a bit and turned off on the Green Horn hwy at McKenzi Junction and then I rolled on the throttle and let her rip all the way to Bishops Castle - thats a very fun fast ride for 15 min or so of good stuff. There is more good twisties if you keep going but the best stuff is on the way to the Castle. Bigalow Divide its called is the best part.
Map of the video ride
We rode into Flornece and the heat on the temp gauge showed 100f, only in Colorado can you go from 65 to 100 in a matter of 12 mintues! We looked back at the wet mountains it was just covered with rain clouds, we hit it at the perfect time!
Im up at 5:45 to register for classes, get ready, and I’m out the door at 8am. The first 30 minutes go by uneventful as I drive through towns familiar to me on my way to the coast, but then something unexpected happened. As I am cruising along on the freeway, some unknown monster of the sky decided to release the most horrifying, gigantic crap of all time, and it hit my square in the visor, spattering everywhere. It gets on my jacket, on my tank bag, and in my chin vent, but this thing doesn’t smell like poop, no. This thing smelled like Satan ate a dead body then puked it up. I do everything in my power to suppress my gag reflex from this putrid pile of poop as I try franticly to get to the next exit as soon as possible. I pull into a gas station and rip off my helmet as quickly as possible and spend the next 15 minutes cleaning it off everything. An interesting start to my trip to say the least…
After the poop incident, I make it to the coast and work my way up to my camp site. Damn were these roads fantastic. Hwy 1 up the coast were some of the most gorgeous roads I have been on, although you will probably be hearing that a lot from me in the next few weeks. The first 200 miles of my ride are amazing. I hit perfect windy roads along the coast, followed by forest roads. Then it started to rain. Luckily it was mist for most of the time, but I hit a few good downpours here and there. So the last 150 miles were slightly less fun.
The rain lets up a bit just as I find a campground, and holy hell is it a gorgeous campground. I stopped in Klamath, CA after 348 miles. The campground is right on the bank of Klamath river, with the mountains in the background. After I set up camp and find some food, it’s about 5pm and I go to the club house to charge my computer and phone. Did I mention they had Wifi? Not exactly roughing it… After spending a bit of time in the club house, I pull up a chair right on the bank of the river and just relax for a few hours until the sun set. I then went back into the club house and played dominoes with old people for an hour, it was pretty awesome.
I wake up at 8am, slightly later than I would have liked to, and set off around 9. There honestly isn’t much to say about most of this day, I got into Oregon pretty quickly and the roads were really boring. They were quite pretty through the trees and a bit along the coast, but strait and not very exciting.
I make it to my campsite around 4:30, I only did about 320 miles, slightly less than I would have liked, but I’m only about 220 miles from Seattle, where I am staying with some friends, so it doesn’t matter much. My campsite is back in the trees, but I am maybe about 100 feet from the beach, I can hear the waves crashing while in my tent. While sitting at my picnic table making dinner, a lady walking by invites me to her bon fire on the beach. I head out there and it is her, her husband, and their 4ish year old son. After a bit of talking and a few beers I find out they are from Vancouver, both ride motorcycles, and the guy had a VFR! What on earth are the chances of that! So we chat it up for about an hour as the sun sets over the water and the fire slowly dies out, then we say our goodbyes and back to the tent for me.
When I woke up Wednesday morning, I decided I as sick of riding up the coast. It had been pretty boring so far and didn’t look like it was going to be any more exciting, so I decided to head inland. After having breakfast in Tillamook, OR I headed up Hwy 6 through the Tillamook National Forest where things became a bit more fun. I rode through some long, smooth sweepers on my way north, and eventually turned off on a smaller road where I saw another motorcycle way up ahead. As I caught up, the guy on the Ducati noticed me and pinned it. I spent the next 15 minutes or so chasing him down. He then let me pass and we spend another 20 minutes with him chasing me before he gave me a quick wave and took off down a different road. Probably the most fun I have had with a complete stranger.
After riding some of the back roads through the forest I had to jump on the freeway to get up to Seattle where I was staying with some friends. So the last 100 miles were all freeway, not too exciting. I only did about 250 miles but I’m pretty close to Vancouver now so it will be a short trip up when I leave.
I woke up around 9am and stuck around to help out with some stuff for the family I was staying with. I left around 2pm I think and had a pretty uneventful freeway ride up to the boarder, that’s when things got interesting…
After showing my passport to the guy, I was asked to park and enter the building there, whatever it is. I was then questioned about my stay, what I was doing, where I was staying, the usual stuff I guess. But then they asked me to remove my jacket and boots, and take everything out of my pockets while 3 big guys are standing there watching me. He then says, “why are you so nervous?” not aware that I am nervous, or look nervous, I immediately become nervous. “There is only one reason you should be nervous,” he said. “You are hiding something.” Even though I know I am not hiding anything, I become even more nervous. He then asks me for the keys to my bike, and the passwords to my computer and my phone. For the next hour, I watch from inside as they tear apart my bike, looking through everything. They then come in with my computer and spend the next 3 hours running tests on my computer while four very large men stand around looking at it and occasionally looking up at me with not so friendly faces. A total of 4 hours later, I am released and have to spend the next 30 minutes packing up all my stuff that is scattered everywhere.
When I get to the hostel that evening my mood gets better quite quickly. I get my room, and find a spot for my bike, then I head down to the hostel bar for a drink. As soon as I sit down an Aussie from Melbourne introduces himself and we have a few beers and chat for a while. Its trivia night, so I get on a team with 3 Aussies, one from Perth, Melbourne, and Sidney, and a girl from London, all traveling by themselves. After we fail miserably and Canadian trivia we have a few more beers then go on a quest for Poutine, and holy crap was it delicious. We then go to a pub down the street that had an awesome band playing some fun Irish music. After dancing for a while we all went back to the hostel to go to bed.
The next morning I went down for the free breakfast. I ate and chatted it up with another Aussie, a Kiwi, three Germans, and a French Canadian. So far it has been a good trip. Did I mention one of my roommates snores really loud? Good thing I brought ear plugs.
Day #5,6, and 7
I’m just going to put these together. I am having such a blast I cant handle it. This city is freaking amazing. I have been hanging out with Claire, the girl from London quite a bit, as well as Mark, a guy from Switzerland. For the most part we have just been walking around the city, eating food from all the fantastic food carts and truck that are absolutely everywhere. But today we went to Lynn Park where there is a suspension bridge and a few waterfalls that are really cool. While walking around we started talking to this girl who looked to be on her own. Her name is Flor, and it turns out she is from Guadalajara, Mexico and is babysitting for a family here for 3 months. She ended up hiking with us for the rest of the day then came back and partied with us for most the night. Its 3am and I just got into bed. Grandville, the main street here, has been completely shut down and there has been festivals going on all day. We met up with two of Claire’s friends from London who just got into town, as well as a few German guys, and all went out to some clubs and had a blast. My ears are ringing, I lost my voice, and I can barely walk, but damn it was fantastic
So I am already beginning to modify my trip a little bit. I don’t think I will be going to Vancouver Island for Canada day, because everyone is convincing me to stay here and just go maybe the next day. So if I have the energy after Canada day, I might go and ride around the island, maybe not though because its like $45 each way, so I don’t know if I want to spend $100 to go to the island and back.
Also, instead of riding strait up to Jasper and Banff on Tuesday when I leave I will be riding along the boarder and going to Osoyoos to meet up with Claire and her two friends Matt and Eliot who are both freaking awesome. I might stay a night or two there and then head up to Jasper and Banff, then meet them again in Calgary a few days later for the Calgary Stampede. I don’t know, I am rambling a lot though because of my slight state of inebriation… Ill post pictures later when Im able to figure out how my camera works again.
I ended up sleeping until almost 1 o’clock. I went down stairs and met up with everyone to watch the Spain vs. Italy soccer game, and then we all went down to the waterfront to check out everything that was going on. We discovered that it was Cannabis day, so we went over to the Art Gallery downtown to check it out. I have never seen anything like it. Vendors and people everywhere walking around selling weed, and joints and brownies and anything you could think of. All while the police were walking around and just laughing. At 4:10 they made everyone there, which was probably a good 500 people, sit on the ground, while they walked around throwing out free joints to everyone, and just passing out huge handfuls of weed to anyone with a pipe. It was absolutely the most mental thing I have ever witnessed. There was then a countdown to 4:20, and everyone lit up at the exact same time.
Later that night we went down to the waterfront again to watch the fireworks and then came back for a few beers and bedtime. I am definitely glad I was able to experience Canada Day here, It was amazing
They day after Canada Day, (day 8) I didn’t do much. It was my recovery day so I slept till 1pm, then just went out and walked around for a bit and got my stuff packed. I left Tuesday morning at 8am and had a pretty miserable few hours. It was pouring rain and my visor was fogging up really bad. After a few hours I pulled over and duct taped my face to my helmet so my breath wasn’t hitting my visor, which worked decently, but hurt like hell to take off. After a few stops to put on more layers and wring out my soaked gloves since it was 45 degrees, I started to get into the mountains and the rain started to let up a bit. I almost wished the rain came back though, because my gloves were still soaking wet, and it dropped down to 35 degrees. Almost freezing temperatures and a 70mph wind chill and I could barely move my hands.
I ended up finding a little restaurant up in the mountains and I sat in there and held a hot cup of water for 30 minutes or so then took off again. It started to warm up after that and the road and scenery was gorgeous. I ran into another guy on a 5th gen VFR and ended up riding with him for several hours until I arrived in Osoyoos in the Okanagan area. There I met up with my English friends I met in Vancouver. We were on a farm just outside Osoyoos where a bunch of people from around the world stayed and worked on the farm for food and a place to sleep.
I woke up at 6am to go to work. We worked until 12 o’clock weeding and fertilizing squash plants. It really wasn’t too bad, and the views from the farm were spectacular. It seriously never got old looking at the mountains in front of us. After work we just hung out by the river, ate dinner, and relaxed.
I said goodbye to my friends and left Osoyoos in the morning to head to Banff. I decided to stay in a hostel there instead of camping. So far most campsites have cost me between $20-$30 dollars, and the Hostel was 36, so it was worth it. I also had so much fun meeting people at the hostel in Vancouver I thought I would give it another shot. I rode about 390 miles to get to Banff with pretty decent weather. It rained a few times, but it got up into the 70s a few times.
The road itself wasn’t all that exciting, but the scenery was ridiculous, I have never seen anything like it.
This morning I decided to go for a ride up to Jasper. In all it was about 250 miles and it was gorgeous. I stopped at Lake Louise, Peyto Lake, and Moraine Lake, all fantastic. The weather was amazing, high 60s, low 70s the whole time. I met a couple on a moto trip from Chico on a Goldwing, and rode with them for a while. I had to do a bit of hiking to some of the lakes, which was hot as hell with all my gear on, but well worth it. It looks like I’m headed to Calgary tomorrow for the weekend to check out the Calgary Stampede. I will be couch surfing for the first time, which will be interesting. I’m pretty excited. I think I will be meeting up with Claire again tomorrow and hang out with her for the weekend.
Day # 13 – July 7
I slept in a bit and then left Banff to head to Calgary. I got there around 11am and went to the guys house that I was staying at for the weekend. I was hardly couch surfing. The guy, John Smiley, had a guest bedroom for me to use with a ridiculously comfortable queen size bed I got to sleep in. We chatted for a while and he gave me keys to his place, then he gave me a ride downtown on his way to work. I walked down to the Stampede to meet up with Claire and her friends, an Australian guy and a Scottish guy, both really cool. We walked around a while and checked out the Stampede grounds, then went to one of the big tents where they had a DJ and a live band. We hung out there and danced for a while then watched the fireworks and went home around 1am
Day #14 – July 8
When I opened my door in the morning John had left my some towels and a not saying he went to work and to call him if I needed anything etc. He was a super nice dude. I walked to the house where Claire and the other guys, Ryan and John were staying and we watched the Wimbledon match and then went down to the Stampede grounds for the rodeo. It was pretty much your average rodeo, but still fun to watch. Bull riding, barrel racing, the usual stuff. So I guess the guy that my friends were staying with, his girlfriend works at the Stampede and was able to get us into the Chuck Wagon races for free, which was pretty cool. I guess its kind of a Calgary tradition, but it was definitely unique. We were all pretty exhausted so after that we went back to their place and watched the fireworks from their balcony, then I walked back to where I was staying. I chatted with the guy I was staying with for a bit, bought him some beer for letting me stay with him, and went to bed. The weather all weekend was really nice as well, almost a bit too hot. I think it was in the upper 80’s and a bit humid.
Day #15 – July 9
The next morning I went back to Banff and met up with Claire again. We pretty much just walked around and explored the town a little bit and hung out with some people at the hostel. I was able to find a pretty cheap helmet a few towns over so we could both go on a ride. Nothing really exciting happened today…
Day #16 – July 10
We woke up pretty early, and packed up some food and stuff for the day then hopped on my bike to go for a ride. Claire hadn’t been to any of the lakes yet so we went to Moraine, Louise, and Peyto, the ones I went to before. We did a bit more hiking around the lakes though which was nice. That took up most the day then on the way back down from Lake Peyto we stopped by Lake Louise again and rented a canoe for an hour to check out the lake. It was a little pricey but totally worth it. We were able to make it all the way to the other side of the lake and back. We were both exhausted after getting back to the hostel so we just watched a movie and went to bed.
Day #17 – July 11
Holy crap I can’t believe I have already been gone 17 days, It feels like my trip just started. Claire left to fly home this morning, and I packed up and got on the road again. I wasn’t all that excited to get back on the road after mostly just hanging out and having fun for the last two weeks, but I think mostly I just didn’t want to leave Canada. I went through some more nice forests and such on my way down to Montana, where I had much less difficulty at the boarder. I rode into Glacier National Park and found a campsite for the night around 4:30. I did about 320 miles today. It is really hot in Montana, I hit a few sections where its got up into the 90’s, which wasn’t that fun because my jacket isn’t very good in warm weather. Also, it was crazy getting here and seeing everyone else riding around on their motorcycles with no helmets, since you don’t need to where one here. Although I noticed it was just the Harley guys. I didn’t see a single Harley rider wearing a helmet. Most everyone else was though.
Day #18 – July 12
I woke up a bit late and got on the road by 9am. I worked my way through the rest of Glacier National Park, which was gorgeous as expected and then headed south. The Going-to-the-Sun road through Glacier was awesome. There were waterfalls like every 50 feet just dumping right onto the road. Honestly, if I would have seen Montana first, I would have been blown away, but it really doesn’t compare to the stuff I saw in Canada. Its still gorgeous though.
After getting out of Glacier National Park the scenery changed a bit… I hit the long, strait highways through the middle of nowhere, which never seemed to end. The nice thing though is the speed limits in Montana are awesome, 70-75 mph almost everywhere. Which was nice compared to the 90-100 kph speed limits in Canada, which is like 55-62 mph. So I made some very good time cruising at 80mph or so. In all I did 490 miles today, it was not exactly fun, but I made some good time riding 11 hours.
Day #19 – July 13
Last night I discovered my bike wouldn’t start again. I woke up early and walked 3.5 miles into town with my battery to have it looked at. A guy at Napa Auto Parts put it on a charger for me for a few hours to see what would happen. I hitch hiked my way back to my campsite and was able start up my bike. I packed up all my gear and rode into town and back to Napa. I put a volt meter on the battery while it was running and it was reading 12.14, which means its not charging… great… So I said screw it and hit the road anyway around 2:30pm.
I went through Beartooth pass and Chief Joseph’s pass, which are up through the mountains, what a gorgeous road. It was quite a drastic change in weather too. Within about 15 minutes it went from 90 degrees and sunny at 6,000 feet, to 40 degrees and pouring rain at 11,000 feet. It was pretty cool though, I just watched the altimeter on my GPS just keep going up and up until I broke 11,000 feet. Although the weather was crappy, it has got to be one of the most beautiful roads I have been on. It was kind of different though. The mountains weren’t as cool as in Canada, but in Canada I was riding around looking up at the mountains. Along the Beartooth pass I was in the mountains. I was literally the highest thing around (highest as in altitude,) and looking down on almost everything else.
I made it through to Wyoming and found a campsite about 40 miles east of Yellowstone. The people next to me are pretty cool and we hung out and had a few beers. Now time for bed.
Day #20 – July 14
I left around 8:45 this morning and headed for Yellowstone. It was kind of cool but I honestly wasn’t all that impressed. Half the park I rode through was all dead, burnt trees, and the entire park smelled like eggs. Besides the occasional steaming, bubbling pools of mud, there wasn’t much exciting about it compared to some of the other national parks I’ve been through.
Day #21 – July 15
I packed up in the morning and made the decision to get home From Missoula, MT. So I hit the road expecting a long day, and a long day it was. I hit a few really nice roads through Idaho, but it was raining most the time so I couldn’t enjoy them as much as I would have liked. Once I got into eastern Oregon though I hit the strait two lane highways that seem to go on forever. Pretty much nothing exciting, lots of riding ect. I ended up getting home at 3:30am after nearly 20 hours of riding. What a day, but my bed feels amazing.