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Old 05-19-2018, 07:15 PM   #1
GB500guy
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Three days, three GB500s, and 485 blissful miles

It's not every day people see a Honda GB500 in the flesh, so when two friends from southern California asked to trailer their GBs up to Vacaville for a three GB ride exploring local roads, I said "Let's do it!" Carla, a bike collector and restorer extraordinaire, brought a GB she bought from me last year. Matthew, a professional photographer, brought his time capsule GB which sat in it's original shipping crate from 1989 until 2005 and now has fewer than 3,500 miles on the clock. Day one took us to the Mendocino coast for an overnight stay.

Link to Google map of day 1 route




Monday morning, ready to ride!



Past Monticello Dam, Lake Hennessee, and on up 128 toward Geyserville we went on a beautiful clear morning.









We stopped for an early lunch at Jimtown Store, a picturesque little spot on Hwy 128 outside Healdsburg where we enjoyed good eats and funky down home decor.



Then it was time to serve up some epic near-deserted midweek riding in the form of Skaggs Springs Road, followed by a snack at Stewert's Point Store, a taste of Hwy 1 down to Jenner, then back up to an overnight stay in Gualala.





















Tired but happy, we rolled into my brother Frank's place where he prepared another of his fantastic dinners and spoiled us with warm hospitality. Tuesday dawned another sparkling clear day as we headed north for day two.



continued....

-Bill

Last edited by GB500guy; 05-20-2018 at 06:02 AM..
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Old 05-19-2018, 07:16 PM   #2
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Three days, three GB500s, and 485 blissful miles, part 2

Link to Google map of day 2 route, part 1 and part 2





Day two's plan was to return to Vacaville via Mountain View Road, Boonville-Ukiah Rd., 175, Middletown, and Pope Valley. Happily Carla and Matthew requested a stop at the Point Arena Lighthouse which turned out to be a high point of the day. Heading north toward the lighthouse we first took time for a couple of coast shots. Yours truly feeling a bit nervous so close to the cliff-









The Zen House motorcycle shop in Point Arena was closed this day, but we took a few minutes to peek in at some of the exotica inside.






Past Point Arena we turned off on lighthouse road to take in the sights.



The building on the left houses a museum with lots of historical information and artifacts, among them the original 4,700 lb. Fresnel lens made up of 258 hand ground prisms set in a brass framework. Originally illuminated by an oil fueled wick and later by electricity, this magnificent lens was later removed and is now replaced by a sad little shoe box sized LED array.



Then it was time to hike up the 145 stairs to the top of the 115 ft. tower where we were wowed by the sparkling clear views in all directions.






One level down you can step out into the open air for a spooky look straight down....



...and a great view back along the headlands.



I'm so glad we took time to stop.






After a stop at Rollerville Cafe for a bottle of water we turned inland on Mountain View Road and just enjoyed the perpetually twisting road with few stops for photos.









Back home, we made plans for our final day's ride, next post.

-Bill
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Old 05-19-2018, 07:17 PM   #3
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Three days, three GB500s, and 485 blissful miles, day 3

My riding pals had to trailer their bikes back down south Wednesday afternoon, so we kept it local and did a nice Napa Valley-Pope Valley-Berryessa loop.

Link to Google map of route



We first sampled the delights of Wooden Valley, Hwy 121 and Dry Creek Road, then headed up to St. Helena for lunch. Then came another high point as we rolled our three thumpers up to the local Honda dealer, Parriott Motors.

You might have thought they were having a fire drill the way personnel all came out to gape at the bikes! Out came their cell phones to snap pictures of the rare three-GB sighting. As it happened the regional Honda sales rep was there and he couldn't seem to get enough, oohing and ahhing and taking video as we finally rolled away. Fun time.



Next up was Old Howell Mountain Road, which is officially closed but we did a little scofflaw ride around the barricades and enjoyed a few miles of deserted funky pavement before heading through Angwin to Pope Valley, Pope Canyon Road and back down 128 to home.



I had never ridden with another GB so it was great fun to be in a little pack of three. Hopefully we can do a repeat some day.

-Bill

Last edited by GB500guy; 05-20-2018 at 06:01 AM..
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Old 05-19-2018, 08:05 PM   #4
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That is the single best ride report I've read this month.
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Old 05-19-2018, 08:08 PM   #5
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Very cool. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 05-19-2018, 09:16 PM   #6
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That is the single best ride report I've read this month.


Totally agree - Awesome write up and pics
Thanks for sharing and taking us along
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Old 05-20-2018, 06:29 AM   #7
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Awesome! Years ago I my buddy in Santa Barbara had one and I rode it over CA 33,very fun bike!
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Old 05-20-2018, 07:51 AM   #8
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I just wonder how many folks appreciate how svelte and narrow these bikes are. They look like lean horses ready to go.

Nice report.
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Old 05-20-2018, 08:20 AM   #9
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(I can't wait to "retire"...)
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Old 05-20-2018, 12:29 PM   #10
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How do they like Norcal roads compared to Socal?
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Old 05-20-2018, 12:50 PM   #11
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Awesome stuff Bill.

So cool to see a classic machine be such a conduit to fun.
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Old 05-20-2018, 01:31 PM   #12
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(I can't wait to "retire"...)
Thought you did....
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Old 05-20-2018, 01:49 PM   #13
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(I can't wait to "retire"...)
Yep, there's nothing like being able to ride weekdays!

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How do they like Norcal roads compared to Socal?
Well, all I heard the whole time was, "I can't believe these deserted roads!", or "Man I just hate the PCH down our way, it's so damn crowded!!"

-Bill
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Old 05-20-2018, 02:09 PM   #14
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Thought you did....

July 3....
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Old 05-20-2018, 05:22 PM   #15
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Another outstanding report, love them! On day 2 you rode right past our house on Boonville Road. If I had known, I would have at least waved!

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