F I N E   H Y D R O C A L   C A S T I N G S   B Y   C.   C.   C R O W    
  P.   O.   B O X   1 4 2 7         M U K I L T E O,     W A     9 8 2 7 5     U S A    


A-48, Arches National Park, the perfect campsite.

The Fine Art of Motorcycle Touring


Motorcycle Stories and Other Assorted Tales

by C. C. Crow

1986 Tour

6-14 SAT
There's a lot to do to get ready for a four week trip. Bill's BMW Service is a good place to start. Unfortunately, Bill has decided to move from the basement of his house in little old Snohomish and into Green Lake, Seattle. He was going to do my bike last week, then this week... but buying a BMW franchise is a big deal. So the repairs can wait until after the trip. I've changed fluids etc. Need rear brake pads, gas line. Big Al with have some business.

6-15 SUN
Dad's Day. I work in the garage, clean up the house.

6-16 MON
I finally make it out the door. As soon as I get onto I-5 there is a patrol car reminding me to watch my speed. 6 p.m. through Portland. Weather was great last week, 90 degrees. Sucks this week. Rain off and on. I keep going south till midnight. Past Sexton Pass and Grants Pass. Camp for free in mountains.

6-17 TUE
It always takes an hour to pack up and leave- no matter what. I'm on the road at 9. Go down and get back on I-5. Welcome to California. Fruit inspection. Get ham & cheese and eat lunch at Fowler Falls near McCloud. Sadly Charlie meets me at the entrance to the picnic ground and commits suicide. I squish him flat. Hold small service. Poor Charlie, there was nothing I could do. He came out of nowhere. The falls are pretty nice, great swimming hole, even has a ladder. Too bad its cold. At Lazzen Peak I meet the Californian girls. They lost their keys sliding down the snow field. Unbelievably, they find them. I camp over Yuba Pass. Cold and windy. Build a nice fire, drink beer and eat a sandwich. Nice moon.

6-18 WED
Like I said, it always takes an hour. Head towards Lake Tahoe, north shore, to Nevada. Very nice, a lot is state park. Stop in Minden, take pictures of mill. I go into Yosemite, decide to camp at Toulumane Meadows, have choice of three or four sites, of 200. Choose site because of BMW next door, party site. Set up camp and cruise down to valley. As I go, I see black pick-up full of people- must be my neighbors (they are). Valley was great, less crowded that I've seen. Take lots of photos, hike. Head back, pass a Pinto barely making it up the highway, full of packs and junk. Stop to call Rooti at phone booth in snow. Pick up dry wood. Pull into campground, its full. Black pick-up is parked next door, huge party going on. The Pinto is waiting at my spot, eyeing it. Its empty except for little tent. I take pity on them and share my site with four Germans. Their English is very limited. I cook a steak. They have kraut and weenies. Never make it over to say hi to Beemer.

So, in the middle of the night I wake up hearing something. A rattle, a thunk. It's quiet for a moment and then all hell breaks loose, pots crashing, stuff falling over, something grunting disapproval. The voices from the tent saying, you go out and look, no, you look. Not me. More clattering, rummaging around. Then I'm listening to a bear, whose decided to side maybe five feet from my tent, slurping on a can of baked beans he's gnawing on, punctured and licking the sauce. There's nothing I can do, so after about fifteen minutes I fall back to sleep. In the morning it was quite a site. Junk all over the place. Potato chips everywhere. Mister Bear had a feast. These guys had left everything out for him, even the tequila bottle.

6-19 THUR
I break camp before the German's awake. Stop at the Tioga Inn and have pancakes. The waitress is a rock climber. Seems an old prospector built the lodge by himself with the help of his mule. I ride south on 395 and go up to Mt. Whitney Portal. Hike up trail about a mile, come back eat and sleep until 6, then head east. Stop at Panament Springs for a beer, meet George who is a character, more Germans, the ex-Marine and three puddies-tats. At dusk I head for DEATH VALLEY, eee-ha! Pull into Furnace Creek at 10:30, try to sleep. Too hot.

6-20 FRI
Get up at 6 a.m., wait for gas station to open. Head south, side trip around artist point, Badwater, sell film to tourist, Stop for beer and drinks. Meet Brownie. Come in to Vegas at 12:30, go shopping, wait in line at Dunes. Here's Rooti. Okay, let's party. Kim leaves message, she just couldn't stay away. We gamble less than one dollar all night. Walk to Garcias for dinner. ZZZZ

6-21 SAT
Eat at hog trough, get yelled at for not leaving tip. Drink Champaign then have lunch. Send Kim to pool while we go looking for helmets. Come back and take walk, get ice cream and almond caramel. Eat dinner at Savoy Room, prime rib. Gamble money away. Do okay at 21 machines but bad luck streak of black on roulette wheel. Should quit all together.

6-22 SUN
LAS VEGAS at the Dunes. Breakfast at S room. Load up bikes. I gamble while Rooti takes Kim to airport. Gamble's widow. Head NE, stop at Black Cat fireworks stand. Coming into St. George we see forest fire. Get gas and food. Almost loose my leather jacket. Head to ZION. Pull into B-1 and camp out. Eat chops. We don't say hi to "inexperienced" bikers.

6-23 MON
Leave Zion, Rooti has coffee and I take photo run. Go north, view point of fire. N on I-15, stop at Cedar Breaks NM. Then down to Panigitch dodging moo-cows. Stop in Escalante. Go through Boulder and camp in mountains.

6-24 TUE
Head for Bullfrog Marina on LAKE POWELL. Bust us a ski boat #11 Invader w/ 120 Evenrude, ski package. Load up and head for Stray Cat Point in Iceberg Canyon. Set up camp and then go water skiing. Have a blast. Water E. Eat spaghetti. Pair of B-52s bomb us. Weather cloudy.

6-25 WED
Birthday. Have breakfast and then go into town for gas, ice and ice cream. Do a little exploring. Water ski. CB for lunch. Take afternoon nap. Hot-dogs for dinner. Shoot off Saturn missiles. Explore side canyon on way back from Halls Xing. Water ski there. Get blasted by wind storm in evening.

6-26 THUR
Water skiing on Lake Powell. What a blast. My arms are tired. Eat breakfast and pack up and leave everything by rocks. Recon the Rincon, take photos, water ski back. Rooti qualifies on one ski, I can't quite do it. Explore back end of Iceburg. Time to head in after lunch. Tim checks us in, likes our humor. Almost miss 5 p.m. last ferry. Head N to Natural Bridges, check out ruins along way, small place. "CROW 51" scratched into rock, w/ other pictographs. Go over bench and you can see all over. Camp at site #9, grilled ham and cheese.

6-27 FRI
Eat breakfast and head for Mexican Hat. Da-na-na-na... and MONUMENT VALLEY. Go over the Moki Dugway- 100 ft. drop. See B-52s in valley below. Incredible view. This is what the west is all about. Go to Monument Valley. Find laundry is gone but take showers. Head for Blanding, find laundry by DQ. Also find great meats at the MERC. Buy NY strips. Go back to camp NATURAL BRIDGES and walk down to Supapu Bridge. Very cool, skip campfire, stars.

6-28 SAT
Load up, head to Blanding for food stop, off to CANYONLANDS. Rain storm breaks the heat. Too many bugs though. GO to Outpost. Eat tacos for lunch. Pig out. Drive to Elephant Hill. Snooze in afternoon.

6-29 SUN
CANYONLANDS is bug world. We get bummed out and decide to split instead of hike. Stop at Outpost and get T-shirts. At Blanding Rooti tried to call Kim but no answer- poor Rooti. We see "Official Use Only" government van full of intertubes and water- skis- our tax dollars at work. We consider turning them in. Head for CHAMA, NM. Go over pass, it rains, camp at Elk Creek, ribs.

6-30 MON
Break camp and go to Chama. Eat breakfast at saloon. Take 10:30 train. Ride in flat car at 20 mph. Eat junk food instead of hog trough. Take lots of photos. Ride back to Chama. Look for PBL. Can't find. Eat dinner at Vera's Mexican Cafe- good. Ride into mountains. Hopewell Lake. Kind of rugged but finally pitch our tents. Canadian-style fire lasts all night. Wet tents.

7-1 TUE
We check out Taos in morning. Hand out in square. Punk with spike hairdo tells tourist "No pictures!" I should have took one! Take back roads south, dodge rain storms. Roll into ALBUQUERQUE. Party at casa Rooti. Eat steaks.

7-2 WED
Hang out in RootiQQ. Go to Old Town. See art and turquoise.

7-3 THUR
Kim comes. Dinner at Oceano. We really pig out.

7-4 FRI
4th of July. Pancakes or French toast for breakfast? BQ chicken for dinner.

7-5 SAT
BQ ribs for dinner.

7-6 SUN
Spaghetti. Basically laze around.

7-7 MON
more of same

7-8 TUE
Rain. So I stay another day. We attempt to go to movie but it is sold out. So we go back and Tunify.

7-9 WED
Ride north, stop in Escalante to mail postcards. Mexi-bum says "Gev me a dollar". I stop to put on rain gear but camper tells me no so I ride back five miles thinking I'll go around it by way of Taos but by that time storm has gone there too. Decide to go original route which looks like there's an opening but I get soaked before I can stop to gear up. Oh well. Finally I get up into Colorado where it is nice. Still some showers. Stop for rest in Alamosa, see drug deals in park. Go north to Leadville, Climax, more rain, decide to go to Brian's. Arrive and he's not there. Set up tent. Lost my pork ribs (?) so go to store- call Seadog. Go into town.

7-10 THUR
BOULDER COLORADO - We go to Torrey's Peak so Seadog can climb up snow bank for about an hour (I stayed below at the base and read) and he skis down in about two minutes- then we drink beers and hike back to car. Stop in Silver Plume to check out school, get groceries, then back to Seadog's. Seadog went kayaking. I visit Pam and then met kayackers for beers and dinner at Old Chicago.

7-11 FRI
I want to go north but weather is bad. So I head west, up Clear Creek, take Loveland Pass instead of tunnel. It's cold on top. Skiers. Lunch at Silverthrone. Stop in Fruita, decided to go to Arches. Take favorite back road. Old suspension bridge is being replaced with modern concrete span. Sign says campground is full so plan is to go for a hike and then come back to river but I find site A-39 is vacant. So I luck out! I bum some briquettes from Archettes and BQ ribs to perfection. A couple beg their way into camp and I talk their ears off. They had been to Havasu.

7-12 SAT
ARCHES NP - Take early morning hike into Devils Garden. Went down into Fin Canyon beyond Double O Arch. Needed more water. On way out people keep asking me how far it is- Ranger Tunis. I think about moving to another site but don't find any better open so I stay put. Come down to Ranger Station to ask questions and get postcards. Go to Frosty for RB float, groceries, sweat out heat in town, wash hair at spring by river. Cook rib steak for dinner. Drink three beers and visit Archettes. Pretty wild party.

7-13 SUN
Break camp and head for Salt Lake. Water level is very high. Jet 500 miles. Instead of pushing I camp at Three Island Crossing SP. Meet Myrelle & Juan, talk and eat hot dogs. Someone starts brush fire which quickly spreads but firemen come control it. Sleep under stars.

7-14 MON
I say good-bye to the boys, take shower after I pack up. 608 miles to home. I cruise through Idaho, stop at info center for weather report. They don't know. Don't know much about Washington either. Poor gas mileage. Get off Interstate at La Grande, take side road through Elgin, Weston. Get lost in Richland, wind up going to N Plant, gas, north of where I wanted to be, Rt 240. Sight seeing WPPS 3 & 4, graphite plant- lot's of extra e's bouncing around. Head towards Vantage, stop at bridge over Columbia. Wind is blowing at 60 mph! Rough ride- hang on sideways. Go to I-90, huge head wind all the way to the pass. Welcome to Washington. Cloudy in mountains. 170 miles to reserve! Hunt around for gas station at Easton. Buzz over pass and into town. New Harbour Pointe signs. Tarp is off side of boat. Hi puddy, house. Call Rooti. BQ chops and vacuum.

5278 miles

  Next Log - 1987  


  1980   Datsun Roadster Trip - Sorry, no log

  1981   Solo On My New Bike - Sorry, no log

  1982   We Need More Time! - Sorry, not loaded yet

  1983   Stray Cat Tour - Quit Your Job and Go All Summer

  1984   Lost Tour - Colorado, Havasu, Lake Powell

  1985   Girl-i-tus Tour -

  1986   Alb Q Q Loop -

  1987   Freeze Fry Trip -

  1988   The Grand Tour -

  1989   ALASKA - The Ultimate Tour -

  1990   A Month, A Week and A Few Days -

  1991   The Forgotten Trip - No Motorcycles!

  1992   NO TOUR - Sorry, not loaded

  1993   NO TOUR - Sorry, not loaded

  1994   Who's In Charge? Tour -

  1995   Not Sure Where Tour - No real plan

  1996   Back To Alaska - Sorry, not loaded

  1996   Jasper Car Camping - Sorry, not loaded

  1996   Broken Cut Foot Tour -

  1997   What Trip? - Sorry, not loaded

  1998   TOUR - Sorry, not loaded

  1999   TOUR - Sorry, not loaded

  2000   Nailed In Montuna - Sorry, not loaded

  2001   A Tiny Solo Trip - Sorry, not loaded

    and A FEW DAYS

    Motorcycle Stories


    Truth blended with Fiction

    T O U R   L O G S    

    P H O T O   G A L L E R Y    

    I N   T H E   G A R A G E    



  C. C. CROW     P. O. BOX 1427      MUKILTEO, WA   98275   USA