Short trip through WA & OR


Wear out, don't rust out.
I just came back to Victoria from a ten day shooting trip in Seattle and Portland. I had my truck since there was a fair amount of photo gear but certainly wish I had a my bike with me. When I had some free time, I tried to check out the vintage/café scene wherever I went

I've been to Seattle a number of times and am getting familiar with it. When you look up "cycles", single speed bicycles quickly jumps to the top of any Google search. I was mainly looking for shops, bars, etc that might have some café connection for when I ride down. I found a number of coffee shops that seemed to have café racer themed names, like the Café Racer Café, but short of the odd scooter meetup, none seemed to be motorcycle friendly.

I discovered Sodo on my last day and Smarty Pants bar which has a bike night every Wednesday. Wondering how popular it is with folks on this board? Also saw the previous post about Shanty Tavern but the Facebook page makes it look more like a VTwin style of place. Really like the feel of Georgetown and figure that there must be some shop located there. Never really had a chance to find any bike shops, plenty of Harley dealers though.

Never been to Portland but really liked the vibe for the three nights I was there. Driving in the downtown seems near impossible with single lanes for cars, buses and trains, plus one way streets just made walking that much more sensible. Tried contacting See See Motorcycles (who do the One Motorcycle show) for a visit but emails bounced and their phone never got answered. Did find Cheshire Motorsports who had some airhead parts I was looking for. Really nice, laid back attitude, white floors, art on the walls, different bikes on display or sale. Never really found a classic bike/café racer friendly bar but I'm sure they're there.

Had a few extra days and drove out to the Oregon high desert to see the painted hill, John Day Monument, etc. Stayed in Mitchell which seemed to be in the middle of everything. It's a town that's been pretty hard hit economically. Even though done a fair bit of desert photography, the scenery is spectacular. Plus, all the roads seem to be freshly paved and there are more twists, turns and switchbacks . . . it's got to be one of the best places in the PNW for a ride.

Hope to get back soon on two wheels, not four. Anybody who'd like to add some places to "be" on such a visit, feel free to chime in.
Next time looks me up. I'm in the Portland area and have a bunch of buddies with old bikes.
Paulages lives in Portland and would have lots of keul stuff to talk about and show, next time you’re though.

I'm headed to Oregon in July and hope to ride some of those cool roads that you saw in your cage. Don’t really know where I’ll end up, but I’m sure it will be a highlight just the same.

If you're taking the Honda - and I'm only mentioning this because I didn't get good look at the electronics module on your bike - there is absolutely no cellular service where I went. So if you've got a speedo or gps unit that uses cell towers for positing, they simply won't work. Also, if you have a breakdown or need assistance, help could be miles and miles away.
I think the best maps I've seen for riding in this area can be found here:
There are just lots of little roads that don't show up on regular gas station maps. Gas is another matter. Most small towns shut their stations down by 6:00 pm. so evening travel plans might need to be coordinated with larger small towns.
swellguy said:
I think the best maps I've seen for riding in this area can be found here:


Thanks for the maps tip. Those are awesome.
I love the way that the number of corners are noted on some of the more popular roads.
I’ve actually ridden some of the roads around John Day, Prairie City and Granite in the eastern part of Oregon on my RC51 and that’s what I’ll take this trip too. Nice to have old classics to rip up the local roads, but on the long rides, especially ones with amazing secondary roads, I prefer the RC51.

I just made a run from Vancouver, Wa up SR 503 to Cougar, then down some other backroad to Carson, then back to Vancouver on SR14. 180 mile loop (after some side trips) with some of the best twisties I've ever been on - and lots of them. I'm editing down some of my GoPro footage and I'll post it in the Vids section when it's ready.

I love the Fossil/John Day area. Some of the best riding on the planet, methinks.
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