Sunday, March 20, 2011

Death Valley and Beyond: Beautiful and Diverse California!

Chapter 1: Winter Wonderland.

I had been looking forward to the little get-away to Death Valley in March. Enjoy the early/intermittent Spring we had been enjoying till now, and what better way to live it to the max than getting on your trusted steed and heading out for the open road!

I caught a little break in the weather across the Sierra's and embarked on the journey Wednesday, a day earlier than my other FJR brethren who were riding on Thursday, but were planning on overnighting in Lone Pine. I was going to ride all the way to Death Valley and then a little further this day.

No early morning starts this time, didn't leave till about 9:30AM to give the sun a chance to start shining on the mountain passes. The roads were in surprisingly good shape, considering that a storm had just rolled through on Monday night, say what you may about them but CalTrans did a very good job.

I wasn't however taking any chances, kept the pace slow and steady even though there were only a handful of shoddy spots past Twin Bridges: sand on the road, melt from the stacks of snow piled high along the roadsides - the usual winter road hazards facing two wheelers across the mountain highways.

No pictures till I got to the Hwy 89 and Hwy 88 junction, then pulled over for a few shots. Hard to find good angles to shoot with the glare from the snow trying to white out any detail, I much prefer the colors of Spring, to the paleness of Winter. :)

Found this peaceful creek flowing by the roadside with a thin sheet of ice and a sprinkling of fresh snow on top.

Posted Image

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Quick run to the Ocean with friends.

Went for a quick run to the ocean today before the rain moved in this late afternoon, got back a couple hours ago, so I am a bit tired, but felt like firing off a quick ride report with a few pictures, didn't take as many this time because I was on a tight schedule before the skies opened up. I also apologize that my brain is a little mushy for clever prose right now.

A leisurely start at about 9AM, this time I finally got to take a decent picture of the Tower Bridge and Downtown Sacramento..