Motorcycle Sport & Leisure

STATE OF SUNSHINE

There’s a reason the road movie was invented in America – their roads. They’re big and wide and they go on for ever, sucking you in so that you never want to stop riding. But I don’t think my pillion had the same idea.

A five-day trip through California might not qualify as adventure in some people’s eyes, but it was a big deal for us. We have family in San Francisco and LA, and when I suggested we ride from one to the other by bike my wife Pam (a late adopter of pillion travel) surprised me by saying yes.

To plan a route through California one needs to understand its geography. Working from the left, first comes the Pacific Ocean, then the coast, a range of hills, then the fertile Central Valley where all the food growing happens, then the snow-capped Sierras and finally the Nevada deserts, including Death Valley. Our route was to cross the top of the Central Valley via the state capital, Sacramento, over the Sierras north of Yosemite to Lake Tahoe, then down a valley in the Sierras that comes out of the mountains into the western side of

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