My worst ride to date

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harper

Which side is the brake on?
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I started a ride on Friday, May 13, which was a bad choice to begin with and things just got worse. I rode down the Pacific coast the first 3 days in the rain. I met a friend in Redway and continued south. He had a rear-tire blowout at the US-101 CA-1 junction just north of Leggett, fortunately not in the twisties. He got towed back to Redway and I rode to Eureka to pick up a set of tires for him. He got them mounted by about 1:00PM so we were kind of on a 6-hour delay. I dropped him off in Mill Valley and continued to Scottsdale to pick up another friend intending to ride a loop through Arizona, New Mexico, and Colorado. I was beat to death by headwinds in the Mojave, New Mexico was on fire, and it snowed in Colorado, but none of that mattered anyway because his stator failed before we got to Globe, AZ. I followed him home with my emergency flashers on anytime we were going 10 mph below the speed limit, which was most of the way.

Anyway, on my way home, after being wind-beaten in the Mojave again, my ride ended on CA-1 on May 30 just about 10 miles north of the Golden Gate Bridge, close to Muir Beach. I came up behind a car that was stopped in the middle of the lane, no shoulder on either side, no blinkers or emergency flashers, double yellow line, and I slowed down to about 15 mph. The guys in the car appeared to be looking at a phone or a map. It was 7:30AM, there was no traffic, lots of sight line in front of the car, so I started to go around it. As soon as I was adjacent to it, they turned left right into me. They smacked the right side of the bike and broke the right side bag off. I slid down on my right side hammering my right elbow on the pavement and had my right foot dragged under the bike and then went into the ditch. My right toe plate was torn off the boot, my right pant leg was ripped, and the right knee armor was scuffed up, but I stood up and walked away as soon as they pulled the bike off me. I'm still sore from it, four weeks later. The bike had a twisted triple tee, bent forks, a bent frame and bent right muffler that I could see right away. It was a total loss so it didn't fare quite as well as me and it had to stay in San Fransisco. The miracle was that I found and booked a flight out of Oakland next day for only $250.
 

fastpappy

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Sorry to hear about this. Thankfully it wasn't worse. Just too many incidents like this lately I wish people would learn how to drive. :(
 

War in D

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Wow, you should have given that gypsy $5..... either way, recover, new bike, different road trip, be well
 

Gary F

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Sorry to hear that you had such an end to a horrible end to what should have been a fabulous trip. I have thinking about getting a high vis vest to wear over my all dark bike clothing. Does anybody wear this type of clothing and do you think it would help.
 

SFZX

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First of all so sorry to hear about a truly tough ride, you get a gold star for hanging in there all the way!
I've been in that same scenario before and almost ended just as you did. My brother and I were on Goldwings back then ONE WAS BRIGHT YELLOW ! Someone stopped in the middle of the road with apparently no one around is usually lost looking at a GPS, PHONE or a map. Deduction arrived at of course after the fact of a near collision and much thought and discussion. High viz clothing does not make up for stupid cage drivers, evidence, BRIGHT YELLOW HUGE GOLDWING. Right in position of his rear view mirror! They run into the back of even larger bright yellow school busses with flashing lights in the visible direction of travel LOL. But in their defense they were probably happy they figured which way they had to go and jumped on that train! Since then I've always made the decision in any circumstance that even resembles this to give the horn one small tap. Not an I'm sitting on the horn PO'd at you honk. Most importantly though your going to be OK use this as a learning tool to your advantage. I did too.
 

RossKean

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Sorry to hear that you had such an end to a horrible end to what should have been a fabulous trip. I have thinking about getting a high vis vest to wear over my all dark bike clothing. Does anybody wear this type of clothing and do you think it would help.
Perhaps the ONLY time when loud pipes might have helped. It is evident that the driver wasn't watching. In this sort of situation, I would probably do a quick beep on the (Piaa) horns which also flashes my Ericas before going around.

My bike is well lit and has reflective strips on the sides. Back of bags too. I usually wear a Klim jacket with hi-vis panels. To be honest, I think a hi-vis helmet is more noticeable.

Doesn't seem to matter. The best thing is to assume that you are invisible. Making a noise MIGHT help but don't count on it.
 

olderNOTwiser

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Really sorry to read about your aborted trip. Thank goodness you weren't hurt worse.
The CA-1 down and back was one of the wife and I's best rides. We were so lucky. Everything about it was fantastic. Weather was perfect.

Having been a riding instructor I remember a motorcycle safety poster

POV in which you are standing holding your hand out in front of you left hand raised in the classic thumbs up. Barely to either side of the thumb are bits (bar ends mirror edges the toes of two planted boots?) showing you that there is rider/motorcycle behind it.

Caption is "Conspicuity" - I've looked online but couldn't find an image of that old poster.

It wouldn't matter if the rider was dressed in matte black or HiVis anything- they are complete invisible behind the thumb (let alone today's widening A-pillars)
AND that is with the person looking right at them
In ANY situation it should be a no brainer to expect that the average in-duh-vidual is distracted just being alive.

Unless you have true eye contact – when you can SEE they are looking at you (with that look of anger fear jealousy amusement that shows you have actually registered on their consciousness) they Do. Not. See. You.

Every single time I slow or come to a stop I check my mirrors for what is about to rear-end me. It's a reflex, like breathing.
 

harper

Which side is the brake on?
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Well that's the shits! Probably should have come to CFR instead! Hope you heal up and get yourself a nice new FJR.

I need to get a new one before the "Last Hurrah" in Lapine.

Can't give you *like* for that story Harper. Hoping you heal up and make a full recovery!

~G

But you can give me a "like" for the $250 next-day airline ticket. That was astonishing.
 

OCfjr

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Glad you survived to ride another day. That's a twisty section of Hwy-1 that alternates between 55 and 35 often. You were there, none of us were. Bikes can be replaced. That said, try to be a little more patient in the future and consider a couple of taps on the horn while you're stopped behind the stopped vehicle and watching your mirrors. You presented us with a picture of someone stopped for no immediately obvious reason. That's probably the most unpredictable person you could imagine. U-turn? Stoned or dead? Lost? They could do anything.

I hope you heal completely and well and ride many more miles.
 

Goodman4

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Sorry to hear about your accident. Glad you are just sore. My brother and niece both live just north of there. It's a pretty area, but we hit lots of traffic when we rode there a couple years ago.
My niece's husband had a bicycle accident right in that same area and still is recovering from shoulder injury months later.

I kinda wish my accident last month was someone else's fault. It would take some of the sting away.
 

Archer

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thinking about getting a high vis vest to wear over my all dark bike clothing. Does anybody wear this type of clothing and do you think it would help.

Our Man Harper defined & refined the Hi-Viz + Topper as seen as Greg arrives La Pine, OR Sept 21' Hope you get that new bike soon!

Hi Viz Harper.jpg
 

harper

Which side is the brake on?
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Yeah. It was raining when I rode the McKenzie Highway just prior to that landing. The rain gear really sets off that helmet, doesn't it?
 

Rocnsanman

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Harper,
So thankful you weren't seriously hurt. I wear a high vis Schubert but it probably wouldn't have made a difference as the cager wasn't looking for you or anyone else. Who stops in the travel lane, no traffic or not?
Be safe
 

Hunter1948

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Glad you survived to ride another day. That's a twisty section of Hwy-1 that alternates between 55 and 35 often. You were there, none of us were. Bikes can be replaced. That said, try to be a little more patient in the future and consider a couple of taps on the horn while you're stopped behind the stopped vehicle and watching your mirrors. You presented us with a picture of someone stopped for no immediately obvious reason. That's probably the most unpredictable person you could imagine. U-turn? Stoned or dead? Lost? They could do anything.

I hope you heal completely and well and ride many more miles.
I fully agree about the unpredictability of a vehicle stopped for no apparent reason. I've had more than one experience that taught me that lesson.
 

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