Camping by the Kern River and a great ride! CA.

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

So we are back in Kernville again, Lat 35.48 Long 118.27 and just seemed like a long haul from Utah… close to 2000 miles just this past week, as it takes a toll on this body and to my surprise, the new tires that I just purchased have worn down considerably, had a lot of gear on the past round trip, they wear out too fast with all that weight!… I found a great National Forest primitive campsite, about a hundred feet from the Kern River… pretty desolate right now, I have the feeling however that the weekend will see more scattered campers, a great spot to remember.

We took the southern route to get here… I did not feel like dealing with all the passes, the tension was up going through Las Vegas covered yesterday with a thick layer of brown… dark brown smog! Never seen smog that color… I could feel on the road that Los Angeles was not too far… that Bakersfield was ahead, a zillions trucks were driving at warp speeds… Baker was interesting with its World’s Largest Thermometer (?) and of course the one and only Mad Greek restaurant I had heard of many times.

I normally don’t eat during the day… but… Greek food being close to Armenian food, I thought I would give it a try. A lamb and beef Shawarma, which are slices of meat held vertically by a giant skewer and rotated against heat, then sliced thinly, not thin enough in this scenario, with pita bread, tomatoes, onions and a yogurt sauce… one of my favorite drink, yogurt with mint… and of course a Baklava… and it was like a lead weight all afternoon… all evening also! Passable… nothing really too delicate in flavor which it should be… commercialism prevails!… what a shame.

We arrived early, stopped and talked some with the local fishing guide at the store/market to get a feel for where to camp. Thunderbird is the name here, my communication arm was up pretty quickly and a good night sleep followed. This device amazes me every time I set it up!!!… and it works…

Not having much time today for a long ride, we took off to Lake Isabella town to check it out… while stopped, this lady comes up and ask… “is this Spirit?…” Well yes, how do you know his name I replied… He is in the weekly paper she said! Really?… So we went to the local newspaper office, the Kern Valley Sun, to get a copy… and sure enough… there is Spirit on third page with the heading… “Back on the road…”. Any sign of me?… NO… but the site was mentioned… and I was told that they are on line, I looked, but only worthy news are copied on the Internet… you will just have to take my word for it!!! I remember talking to a couple ‘reporters’ last weekend, briefly, giving them my “leisure” card! What fame!… what will be next?

So we backtracked a bit and took 155 toward Glennville… anyone taking the long haul to ride the Tail of the Dragon can just come here… more challenging, longer and not a single break… harder with a sidecar rig, trust me on that… I was worked out when we arrived! A third of the road goes up to Alta Sierra which is also a ski resort, and then all downhill and twisty again, as truly it never stopped. The Crazy Saloon has new owners… I needed coffee, and indulged myself with some fries topped with melted cheese! I had already forgotten about yesterday’s lead weight!

The new owners have been in possession of it for two weeks now… no desserts even yet besides ice cream… we talked… I could… help them, this is the crew above! Maybe a year ago… I would have seriously considered the option… today is another chapter in my life with not much room for it.

Beautiful ride going and coming back. There was a serenity to these mountains, very little traffic, as I have the feeling it must be “fast bike” Mecca on the weekend. The trees changing between the different altitudes, with deep green pine trees at higher elevations and old oak trees as the descent went on. The air smelled fresh, clean, just the right temperature for a riding jacket with the vents open.

And Spirit is feeling pretty perky lately, we have been on a long couple walks along the river… dodged the mosquitos… the other side of the coin as the weather warms up!… and I think he likes his new red Doggles… courtesy of Doggles themselves which just send him two free pairs…

And again… what will be next?… for him. I am just the designated chauffeur seems like… my buddy has come a long way!

Lake Isabella had a great view coming back, there is also much camping there along the banks, so deserted right now that I think I am in for a surprise for the weekend… a great playground for the City people…

Back to camp… no dinner tonight, Spirit of course will, he is eating much more… he needs to gain some weight back as he is all muscle and even when he looses one pound, it shows. He will get there. Soon. I am planning to go to Sequoia soon, the road here is closed, we will need to go south… then north and east again to reach the gates… should make for a nice day.

Till then… you be well…

Ara & Spirit

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3 Responses to “Camping by the Kern River and a great ride! CA.”

  1. Steve Williams Says:

    Spirit is one handsome dog! Is it any wonder the paper leaves you out Ara? *grin*

    The red Doggles complete the package.

    As always your rides, pictures and stories are great.

    Steve Williams
    Scooter in the Sticks

  2. Reno Anderson Says:

    Hi, we are thrilled to hear of your trip. The donation is from all of us here at the Grass Roots BMW Motorcycles dealership. If you come through Cape Girardeau, Missouri…stop by, you have a place to stay. Also, could you somehow put your actual email address on your homepage of your site. I wanted to email you, but for some reason I am not able to connect to your link. If your email address was written on the page, I could just copy it in gmail.
    Hope all is well. Spirit looks like he love the sidecar. I am a sidecarist as well. Have just sold my K75 with a Hannigan sidecar (on a stupid whim) and am now looking for a replacement. My dog also rides in the sidecar as do our grandchildren. Have a ball on your trip. Herb and I took our two teenagers on a year long trip around North Amercia in 1993. It was an experience of a lifetime for us as a family. It was hard to stay in one place after that.
    God Bless, Reno

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