Monday, January 15, 2007

2007 Jan 14 - Polar Bear Ride

January 14, 2007 - Second Annual Polar Bear Ride

Napa and Sonoma Counties

{CLICK on photos to view full size images.} by VSP, Cranky and Roy C.

Hey Skid!!! We REALLY did have a Polar Bear Ride,
right folks! Never got out of the 40s, and
we started out below freezing!!! GBG {27* for Nite Lite}
Bill (Cranky) Snodgrass
San Jose, Ca 95136
'01 Nomad FI Maroon / Silver

VSP with a cup of coffee and calling Buster's to make sure that they are open.

Nite Lite has his chocolate covered JBs.
Nite Lite, Roy C. and Cranky are the first ones at the Jelly Belly. Cranky and Roy even had time to eat a small brunch before the Ride.

Cranky, Phil T. and Roy C.

Jim E from Rio Vista and his son Mike from Novato ariving at the JB.

David J. and Darcy arrive.

Tiny makes it to the JB.

Even the "Saint" arrives from Santa Rosa for his annual ride with the VROC group.

As I lead the 11 bikes with Nite Lite riding Sweep, there are four bikes from Sacramento arriving late with the excuse (that I later heard) that they could not find the Jelly Belly.

I do notice Tom P. on his FJR as he rides up into second right on my side. We contnue west on Hwy 12. At Napa we leave Hwy 12 to head on over to the Silverado Trail. We have a string of 15 bikes. The weather is still cold but the traffic is moderate and moving along okay.

We get to Buster's Southern BBQ in Calistoga around 1:15. Buster's is busy. In fact the tourist are out in force on this chilly but sunny day all over Calistoga.

After most of us have ordered and are eating Mad Marcia and hubby Wayne arrive at Buster's. It seems that they got to the JB around 12.20 - not good for a Noon start. They rode the same route that we had ridden but were about 15 minutes behind us. We now number 17 bikes. What a great turn out.

Nite Lite and Mike E. warming themselves next to the bbq pit.

Tom P. and Ron F., two of our late arriving Sacramento riders.

Mad Ma, Wayne and Cranky. Pdub trying to turn on the "empty" propane heater.
Cranky, the Saint and Roy.
The Sacramento crew eating.
Roy C. at Buster's.

Cranky at Buster's.

Mad Marcia and Wayne with VSP.

Yvonne and Pdub the third of the late Sacramento bikes. Cristina arrives in a Honda Civic with her sons.
Jim E. leaves the WC as the others wait in line.
Almost everyone had Buster's tri-tip sandwich a few even ventured for the hot sauce. At my age I stick to the mild sauce.

We manage to get some of the bikes topped off with gasoline across the street from Buster's and head off for Sonoma.

Well Nite Lite (riding sweep) has to wait as Pdub forgot his back pack at Buster's. Riding lead in front of 16 bikes I never get a chance to see Nite Lite. Heading north out of Calistoga for a short way to head west onto the Petrified Forest Road which will change names to Calistoga Road and the twistiest bit of road on the Ride.

We regroup in Santa Rosa and have 17 bikes heading back to Hwy 12 and through the Valley of the Moon to Sonoma. The traffic is very heavy on Hwy 12 but we do get regrouped as an SUV lets our rear guard around at a stop light in Agua Caliente.

The Ride has had no incidents until I lead us into the Sonoma Town Square and the end of the official Ride. Well in trying to get to the Parking Lot the right way, instead of going the wrong way through the one way exit road. Which as most will tell you, I always use the Exit Road. Anyway I turned one alley way too soon. There are now 5 bikes in a private parking area that only holds 6 cars. SO I head back out to the street with the other 4 bikes in tow. Well by now the rest of the bikes are strung out along the road. Nite Lite has taken the front to lead a bunch of bikes through the Exit road (he always takes the Exit also). I manage to get to the proper entrance alley and lead 6 bikes into the parking lot.

After parking and as I am heading over to the Chocolate Cow I get a phone call from David J. who is stranded somewhere. I head to the street and tell him to back track and I will point him to the alley way. That he does and then Jim E. wanders in via the Exit. Not sure where he was. It turns out that David J. stopped at the Exit driveway but had lost track of the bikes in front of him, so stopped and made a phone call. So Cat, we did not lose someone on this Ride!

David J., Wayne and Tiny.
Most ordered coffee at the Chocolate Cow. But I had a scoop of Spumoni. The guy in the cap is John a Goldwing rider and rider of the fourth late Sacramento bikes.
Roy C.
Pdub, Yvonne and Phil T.
Tom P. and Nite Lite and Wayne.

VSP eating his Spumoni.
Nite Lite telling another of his tall tales..
This pic is for you Skid. Eating ice cream outdoors in January.....{note: Tiny also has an ice cream cone} And ignore Cranky..

From Sonoma I lead the bikes out to I-80 who are headed that way. The rest of the folks leave for home heading north and west.

Sacramento Area Riders:
..Tom P.
..Ron F.
..Pdub w/ Yvonne
..John A.
..Phil T.
..David J.
Sonoma County Riders:
..Nite Lite
..Mad Marcia
..Wayne H.
Bay Area Riders:
..Darcy S.
..Roy C.
..Mike E.
..Jim E.
..Don I.

Don "Very Short Person" Inamasu
VROC #5569-R
Stockton, CA 95219