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since thursday morning, I have done over 1000 miles. mainly on back roads. thursday did the road from Paterson over Mt Hamilton to San Jose. great views, turn after turn, but rough road. a fun part was meeting the Calif mille and seeing those cars out on the roads.
friday did hyw 1 up to Dillon Beach, again nice views, but rough due to all the rain damage and heavy traffic added in.
saturday dillon beach to Sea Ranch and Skaggs Springs rd to Healdsburg and on over Mt St Helena clear to Oroville. heard so much about Skaggs spg, but found it a beautiful tour through the country on rough torn up road. the last few miles were great, smooth lovely rolley coaster turns with a 40 mph speed limit and several rangers patrolling it.
Sunday afternoon left Oroville and headed to Red Bluff where i got on hwy 36 headed toward Fortuna. first hint of what was to come was a sign that said crooked road next 140 miles! YEEHAW!! take the best of the roads around lake Berryessa, Oro-Quincy, Skaggs spgs and any other road you want and it is all there. I highly recomend it if you can make the distance without needing gas. there are a few places along the road that have gas, but they cannot really be counted on. most fun I've had on any road so far.
 

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36 is a great road. Especially the ups and downs just outside of Red Bluff. A bunch of us went out that way last November. Plus since there isnt much out there the traffic was minimal. Sounds like a great trip you had.

Mike
 

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yes, those first miles are really fun. one right hand turn almost caught me. sharp turn hidden by a hump in the road. made me want to go back and do it all again.
I just switched jobs and took the oportunity to have some time off. totally wore out what tread was left on my tires. the bike sure handles differently with a load of camping gear on it, but still managed to have tread in the middle of the front, with none left on the sides.
 

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I have heard of that road before and that sign has actually made it in a magazine!! Love to do it! I tell ya one thing though...140 miles of moderately aggressive driving would really put me in a state of "pucker factor". Normal commuting turns on my gas light right around 130. I can easily drop that closer to 105 with my right hand!! If I could fill up at the VERY beginning I think it would be OK...as long as there was a station at the very other end.
 

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Andrea and I rode this a couple of times with the RKA group. The first time, Amy Holland of Friction Zone was just in front of me for that sharp right. The thought that ran through my head was pretty much "wtf, over?" as I saw her suddenly go right after that hump. My eyes must've been as big as dinner plates as I saw why. I have no idea how I made it, other than Amy clueing me in on where to go next. My heart was double-timing it for a long while after that. I'm sure I would've been off-roading if it would have been me by myself. The rest of the ride was slightly less demanding! After filling up halfway to Fortuna, lunch, and filling up on the way back, I found "the zone" - everything was flowing with no effort or thought required. It was one of the best moments on a bike I've ever had. Unfortunately, it had to end, as I came around one curve to find a large cloud of dust and a couple of people waving me to slow. A guy on a Triumph ST had binned it pretty hard. The bike was totaled and he was seeing little birdies. The crappy thing was that somebody had to go back to the hotel to get a truck to come pick up the bike. Despite that, it was a really good day.

We went again the next year, and went down the coast after stopping in Fortuna. We stayed the next night in Skaggs Springs. Then it was a long trip home, though we stopped for a bit at Richard and Kathy's in Healdsburg. That trip I had my own "oh, sh!t" moment. I think I got some of Elvis's hair gel in my eye. I had to slow down as it was hard to move around on the bike with half the seat sucked up my butt. It was still a great weekend all around.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
there is a station just across the road from the begining at Red Bluff. I was riding fairly late on a Sunday afternoon. some of the places might be more active earlier in the day, there were two or three roadhouse type stations along the way. you would have a hard time controling your wrist, especially in the rolling hills until you get up in the mountians. might be logging trucks during the week to make things interesting. I regretted not taking a photo of the sign, but just didn't feel like turning around for it. the road just led me on and on. you folks with the xx8+9 bikes would have left me in your wake. very little traffic and most moved over and waved me past.the worst part is the miles of flat between here and there!
 

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jbcaddy said:
you folks with the xx8+9 bikes would have left me in your wake. !

I doubt it!!! I've seen you ride that thing...
 

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dug said:
just in front of me for that sharp right. The thought that ran through my head was pretty much "wtf, over?" as I saw her suddenly go right after that hump. My eyes must've been as big as dinner plates as I saw why. I have no idea how I made it, other than Amy clueing me in on where to go next. My heart was double-timing it for a long while after that. I'm sure I would've been off-roading if it would have been me by myself.
So where on 36 is this turn?
 

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DanTheMan said:
So where on 36 is this turn?
Eek. Not sure, it's been a while. I'm pretty sure it's not too far from Red Bluff, heading West. I remember it was a helluva way to start a ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
right turn

I cannot give you the exact distance, but several miles out from Red Bluff there is a road narrows sign. a few turns after the sign it looks as you are cresting a hill. the turn is upon you.
 

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There are 2 or 3 'blind summits' on 36 heading East, at the Red Bluff end of the road, which have either left or right turns immediately after them! This is the most exhilarating part of 36 IMHO! :D

They are even more exhilarating if you catch a little air as you come off the summits! I love that road. :cool:
 

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dug said:
I'm sure I would've been off-roading if it would have been me by myself.
Paul Geller did do some off-roading on "The Turn" when he, Mark Turbo, and I rode Hwy 36 in June, 2004. Some locals stopped to help and reminisced about friends who also discovered the joys of off-roading on The Turn. Their stories were verified by the collection of broken motorcycle parts in the ditch and on the bank. I call this portion of Hwy. 36 in the foothills west of Red Bluff "The Chicane".
 

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jbcaddy said:
maybe I will make a sign to fasten to a fence post along the side of the road. just the two words, "the turn".
Great idea. Everyone who has gone off roading and lost a part of their motorcycle on The Turn could hang the part on the sign, similar to that famous display on the tree at Deals Gap.
 

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If you guys want to do this I can follow in my two chock trailer or actually transport two bikes to the start of 36 and drop you off there. If another bike breaks down, you will have to ride back because I'll take the down bike back. I would like to go just to scout the road, I've heard a lot about it. Myself and others have planned doing the ride this year with trailers to 36 but as you know I hand an incident.

Talk is cheap, lets make a decision on what weekend day or two days and make it for early summer, not on a race weekend. I think pooling of trailers will make the ride way more enjoyable.
 

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jbcaddy said:
maybe I will make a sign to fasten to a fence post along the side of the road. just the two words, "the turn".
Yeah, maybe you can copy the one that was spray painted on the concrete barrier on hgwy 17 to Santa Cruz years ago. I think it said in bold print "valley fun" or something like that. It took a poke at all the people that used that barrier as a bumper going to San Jose from Santa Cruz. I remember using that road twice a day before they had the concrete barrier, it was hairy, especially in the fast lane on a bike and no helmet. But, back then I don't remember being scared, being young makes you feel bulletproof sometimes i guess.

JB, that would be a great idea to mark the turn, it seems many remember it as an "oh shit" kind of turn. It would be nice to see the sign and be ready for the turn, that would put a smile on your face instead of a thong up your butt.
 

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A great way to explore Hwy. 36 is to base yourself out of Weaverville, site of the '04 Yahoo ST owners rally, for a few days. Weaverville is surrounded by mountains and good riding in every direction.
 
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