Left turn, Clyde!!!

Trip Start Aug 27, 2013
Trip End Oct 03, 2013

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Flag of United States  , Oregon
Tuesday, September 10, 2013

This morning I noticed my chain was loose so I went to a Suzuki dealer just down the street and although they were backed up, once I explained my situation the got me fixed up.  I think I will have a new chain and sprockets installed while I am visiting my brother and his family in San Diego. 
Once I got on my way I headed in for a closer look at Mount Ranier.  The surrounding area is all pine forest so it is hard to get more than a glimpse.  

The road to Mt. St. Helen's was interesting but had some sinking spots that were hard to see with the light spots and shadows coming thru the pines above.  Some of them were downright jolting.  There was an older woman driving really slow so when I saw my chance I "goosed it" and felt the surge of power that I love about motorcycles.  Unfortunately I did not see one of the aforementioned dips in the road as I went unexpectedly airborn.  I knew the front wheel was in the air but when I heard the engine suddenly surge I knew the rear tire was off the ground too.  No problems but an unexpected adrenaline rush!

Further towards the top of this road it gets narrow with no shoulder and a 1,000 foot drop is about a foot of gravel away from the edge of the road!  A bit un settling as the motorcycle provides an unencumbered view of the peril that awaits below.  The apex was called Windy Point . . . Holy crap . . . What was this going to be like?  Turns out. I was MUCH tamer than some of the stuff I have  encountered on other roads.

On the way down a bear ran up from the steepness below.  I was going slow and stopped well short of him.  He was a little black bear 3-4 feet tall.  I grabbed my camera and tried to catch him as he scampered up the steep hill above me but I couldn't find him in my attempted picture.  As I left I thought maybe I should have waited to see if there were more which was quickly replaced with the thought "thank God mama was not with him"!

From there I headed west and came out by the Columbia river.  There are enormous piles of logs stacked there  and large freighter ships.  I raced the sun (again) and caught the tail end of the sunset over the pacific at Sunset Beach.  The town of Seaside, Oregon was a few miles down the road where I found a hotel, walked on the beach and rested my weary bones in the hot tub. 
It is beautiful here.  There were many couples walking the beach or on blankets by small fires.  I was overwhelmed by a sense of loss and sadness for the future Lori and I were robbed of.  I was also overwhelmed with a sense of gratitude for the love we shared.

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