Chris Roams

Travel, Adventures, and Photography

Back in the Dust

Trona PinnaclesAfter a long winter on the boat it’s time to get the motorcycle out of its mothballs and hit the road again. The first trick is to get out of the desert as it’s going to be too hot for fun motorcycling very soon. Before that could happen though I had to get out of San Diego, where the bike has been stashed for a few months. Cue 5 hours of sitting in traffic just to get out of the Los Angeles/San Diego Megalopolis.

The good news is that there’s little traffic on the other side of the mountains, the bad news is that it gets very windy this time of year. As per usual I prefer backroads over the Interstates so bailed off of I-15 as soon as I crossed the San Bernardinos and made for Death Valley with gusty winds trying to knock me down the whole way.

After a night in Panamint Springs it got worse. The winds were picking up the sand dunes at the north end of the valley and sandblasting the only road out to the East. Even with a full helmet on and everything cinched up as tight as it would go the sand still finds a way in. Despite how much sand got in my eyes (and presumably the air filter) the only solution was to soldier on through because stopping would just mean getting blasted longer. Fortunately the dunes in Death Valley weren’t being blown nearly as bad and it was a reasonable ride the rest of the way to Vegas.Trona Pinnacles