Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Bullet! Woo Hooo! Night Ride on the Bullet! Last night we took her for a spin. Miss Pretty Thing(tm), Bad Matt and Myself went out for a dinner ride. The plan was to ride up to Boulder Creek, CA, to the Boulder Creek Brewery for dinner.

Before the ride, I set the valves on the Bullet. The procedure is well outlined in the manual on CD I purchased from Pete. Tolerances? Gaps? pah! You just adjust the pushrod so it moves some at TDC, that's it. If it moves, it is set. So low tech....

I would ride the furious, fire breathing Bullet 350. Miss Pretty Thing(tm) on her Suzuki DRZ400, and Bad Matt on his converted Honda CRF230.

We left my house, rode down Almaden road to the gas stop, then over Hwy 85 to Hwy 17. At the Lexington Resevoir, we picked up Black Mountain Road. This is a basic of our route, and no, the Yahoo Map does NOT show all the twists and curves in the road, nor the elevation climbs.

We came south on 17, then right up on Black Mountain Road. Woo hoo! What a hillclimb, through the twisting roads, and redwood forests of the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Stopped at the top of Black Mountian, where they were waiting patiently for me. Then Left (south), and took the last bit of Skyline Drive. Again, as you look at the map, it does not really show all the turns, but gives good idea. At this point, the Bullet and I were comfortable, so I picked up the pace, and got her up to about 45mph. I was dragging hard bits on the left turns, and the tip of my boot, under the shifter on the left turns. eeek! I'd feel the bike settle into the turn, then boot would scrape, and I'd get a gentle feel of the road. eeek.

At the end of Skyline, we turn right on Bear Creek Road, to head into Boulder Creek. This also twisted, fast, with hill climbs and valleys, but a touch faster than Skyline. I had to work to keep up. The Bullet is not yet set for climbing hills, I need to regear and re-jet. But still a hoot.

Once in Boulder Creek, we ate at the Boulder Creek Brew Pub. Yummy onion rings, and Miss Pretty Thing(tm) had a veggie tofu burrito that was the size of her arm. Bad Matt and I had burgers, and he had an extra stout lemonade, causing his face to pucker and his head to spin each sip. 3 cups worth.

After dining, we head back north on Hwy 9. This is straight and flat as you leave Boulder Creek, but tightens up as you get into the mountains. As you approack Castle Rock State Park, it gets positively twisty, and gave me fits. We cross Hwy 236, this link shows some photos of roads very close to where we were. The uphills were long and hard on the top speed. I was lucky to hit 45mph, then fought to carry it into the turns. ON a positive note, there was a big beautiful full moon.

As we crossed Hwy 35, we started heading downhill into Saratoga proper. It's labelled as "Big Basin Way" but does not show how downhill and winding this road is. I managed to keep a speed of about 60-65mph the whole way, but it forced much braking and hard part dragging.

Once in Saratoga Village, we took surface streets home. Matt was tired, he kept crossing his legs and sitting on his calf, as the CRF was hard on his posterior. I followed Miss Pretty Thing, we got to the house, I checked the valve clearance, still good, then I racked out. Very VERY fun evening

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