Posted by: fergy1008 | April 8, 2011

Rose City 250 – 2011

It was a good day for a ride, yes indeed. Angela and I signed up for the Rose City 250 and last Sunday was the event. Mother Nature smiled on us providing decent temperatures for early April (43 degrees when we left), and no rain in the forecast. We left Tacoma early, 4:30 am, in order to make the cutoff time for check in at the event. Upon arrival there were lots of riders already there and more pulling in every minute. We had plenty of time to sign in and grab some much needed coffee and a donuts.

After filling out the appropriate release forms, buying our 50/50 tickets and making our mileage guesses, we mingled a bit and headed outside. The ride consisted of route instructions broken down into three legs, each ending with a quiz questions.

The ride began, and ended, with an onsite poker chip draw. We each pulled a numbered chip from two cans and had our numbers recorded on our answer card for a chance at a high- or low-total award at the end of the ride. As Angela and I handed our chips over to the attendants to verify, I noticed the gentleman I was handing them to had 2010 DT pins on his riding jacket. I looked at Angela and said “look, Honey, another DT rider”. I showed this gentleman our pins and proudly announced to him “yeah, we were the ones who snagged the first dam of the season”. He instantly smiled and put his hand out and said “Hi, I’m DamDan”. We were very familiar with the name from the DamTour’s rider’s forum and were pleased to meet him. We joked and discussed a little about our Wynoochee dam adventure and then Dan explained his adventure with that dam. I think everybody is in agreement – Angela and I might be a little certifiable, but first dam bragging rights were totally worth it. And Dan seconded the idea of one rider who had elegantly commented …”Dude, even your wife has bigger balls than me.” After talking with Dan for a few minutes it was time to mount up for the ride. It was nice to see that all types of riders and their bikes were participating – new, old, Harley’s, Gold Wings, dual sports, crotch rockets and even a couple of trikes.

Reflecting on how nice it was to meet another DT rider we headed out for our adventure. The folks at RCMC were very organized and appeared to have put a lot of work into this event. The course took us on some of Oregon’s back roads that I definitely want to put on my list to travel again. It certainly helped that the daffodils were in full bloom and it seemed mile after mile awarded us with these wonderful spring flowers. It’s also special because they are Angela’s favorite.

Before we left the house Angela had printed out a list of potential other snags we might acquire during the ride. This year, in addition to DT, we’re also participants of the RCMC Grand Tour (http://www.rose-city-mc.org/RCFrameset.html) and Wing Washington, put on by GWTA-Chapter E (http://www.wingwashington.com). You would think 20 Dam good places to ride would be good enough, huh? Well, as luck would have it two of the rides checkpoints just happen to be Grand Tour stops. Paula’s Kitchen & Sweet Shop was our first stop on the ride and a Grand Tour checkpoint. It’s a small restaurant located in the town of Falls City, OR. I’m sure the locals were either quite amused or totally annoyed by all the motorcycles accosting their quiet little town.

After getting our GT passports stamped and answering our quiz question (fill-in-the-blank of the location name) we decided to walk down to a bridge that crossed a river and enjoy the scenery a little more.

Next we headed to the second stop, Neufeld’s Restaurant in Aumsville, OR, which also was a GT checkpoint. If taken “directly” the distance between the two is about 36 miles, but the folks at RCMC made sure you took the scenic route to get there and a fine job they did of doing just that! Instead of 36, the leg was about 70 or so miles and a very enjoyable ride with some of the best pavement I’ve experienced yet.

At Neufeld’s we noted the next quiz answer, the name of the church across the street, then decided to stay for lunch. We settled      ourselves at a table, ordered our meals, and pulled out the map to see the rest of our route. It looked as if our return route would take us just a few miles from the Silverton dam so we decided we had time to make our way to the dam and still get back on the ride course in plenty of time for the finish and awards ceremony.

So off we went…first was a quick pullover on the side of the road to note the elevation written on awater tower for the last question of our ride quiz, then we headed for the dam. Located on the outskirts of Silverton, OR, Silverton Dam is a plain earthen dam but with an awesome spillway to regulate levels – it begs to be ridden on an inner tube. Well, except for all the “Keep Out” and “Keep Away” signs. Oh, and the rocks at the bottom. Anyway, it’s not a hard dam to find at all and should be an easy snag for DT folks.

 

This day there were a few people taking advantage of the nice weather to do some quiet fishing on the docks and as Angela and I wrapped up our photos, a few more bikes from the days ride showed up. They weren’t part of DT, they had just decided to take a detour as well. I told them a little about the DT but had to keep in short as we needed to get back on track in order to finish on time. So 2-dams down, 18 more to go! As we drove through the town of Silverton it seemed a very nice, clean, quaint place. If we had more time I would have loved to stop and walk around a little. Main Street looked to have plenty of nice shops to wander in and out of. And, as indicated by the many motorcycles parked at various locations, this town seems to be a very popular stopping point for riders. It’s definitely on our radar to go back and explore this little town some more in the future. Leaving the dam, it didn’t take long to return to the course and finish the ride.

The awards ceremony started promptly at 4:45 with the door prizes. As luck would have it my ticket was the first called! I won a really nice dust cover for a motorcycle which we will likely donate it to our chapter as we already have a very nice cover for The Wing. After what seemed like forever, the door prizes were finished and they announced the winner of the mileage guess. (Though called the 250 that’s only a general number, sometimes it’s a little more or less. This ride, if taken without dam detours, was 233.3 miles.) Next were a variety of awards including points for those drawn poker chips ….

Angela won 3rd prize for highest total by a non-AMA passenger! (proof in print – http://www.rose-city-mc.org/RCResults/2011250results.html)

But our luck ran out when it came to the 50/50 and the $127 pot went to someone else. After about 45 minutes things wrapped up and it was time to head north. Numbers for the ride: 340 riders, $5100 for the Providence Brain Institute, $246 worth of food and $146 cash from hot dog donations for the local foodbank.

During lunch we had discussed that there was a Wing Washington bonus location kind-of on the way home, just a little more East than we needed to be. As we headed out of Portland, I checked the GPS and found the bonus location was just 14 miles away, and, hell, we had already ridden around 400 miles, so what’s another 14 we asked ourselves. The location – the Camas/Washougal Marina – was located just over the Washington border so after we crossed over into Washington, we turned right and off we went to get our picture. It was only a 15 minute ride to our destination and we quickly located the proper spot to take the necessary picture.

 

On the way there Angela had spotted a sign for a Five Guys hamburger place. My bowling teams’ name is Five Guys…not named after the restaurant chain but because it’s just 5-guys that bowl on a team. One of our members had bought t-shirts for all of us from the Five Guys web site so we could all have matching shirts but, though they were all suppose to be navy, for some reason they sent one grey one with the bunch which I ended up with. When Angela mentioned the sign I thought this might be a good time to swing by and buy the proper color. So after we acquired our picture we proceeded to the Five Guys burger joint. When we arrived it turned out they only sell the t-shirts online but we figured while here we would try the food and see how they compared to our other burger experiences.

We split a basic cheeseburger, fries and drink meal and both agreed that Red Mill burgers are better, but this would probably be second on the list, thought with a big gap between the two. Neither of us were thrilled with the fries or the atmosphere, though we understand it’s intentionally plain.

A short 15 minutes later we were back on the road for a straight shot up I-5 to return home. It started raining shortly before we reached Centralia where we pulled into a gas station to put on our rain jackets and safety vests. After that, and I think maybe a little before, Angela took advantage of her passenger status and dozed most of the way home from there. The ride was thankfully uneventful and we got in around 9:30pm, 17 hours after we had left. We were tired but exhilarated and very pleased with our day. Tomorrow we head south again to Longview, a dam and another Wing WA. Hope the weather holds!

And here’s what the day was all about. Angela and I will seem to do anything for a pin or a patch to put on our jackets.

Thank You for reading our adventure.


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