Philip Bourne


Philip Bourne

I am a motorcycle enthusiast with a beyond mid-life idea of undertaking a series of "Great Motorcycle Journeys of the World'

Went down to Wild Bills casino floor for a McDonalds coffee (only thing open) around 6:30am. In the vast floor with the usual array of blaring casino sights and sounds there was only one person in the whole place - I checked. He was asleep at a slot machine. At least I am not the only person on the planet. McDonalds coffee is a sort of liquid Soylent Green except it tastes of the cup, not of the alternative. I purposely wanted to leave early as the winds were supposed to gust to 40 mph later. The plan was to cut off I15 to Twentynine Palms, but as I closed in on the intersection my oil light went on and knowing there would be no gas that way through the Navajo reservation I kept going along ... read more

North America » United States » Nevada » Primm May 4th 2016

After an excellent home baked muffin and good coffee at the Escalalnte Outfitters (check out their liquor cabinet), said goodbye to the boys as we each headed our separate ways - Rob back to Tuscon via Death Valley; Rik to points southeast and me towards San Diego. 3 guys with PhD's in science, shared curiosity, similar senses of humor, willingness to be laughed at as well as with and flexible natures - it does not get better which made parting difficult. Knowing we will do it again keeps us all going. Continued along scenic highway 12 going west and while it was picturesque, it was not stunning. With Bryce along the way and the Bryce canyon to the left a number of miles away I would have expected more. Panguitch on Route 89 north was a ... read more

North America » United States » Utah » Escalante May 3rd 2016

Started by seeing a bobcat in the wild. At first I thought it was one of the 3 Step dogs or perhaps a coyote, but the lack of tail and that bouncing feline movement left no doubts. A beautiful animal. Then perhaps the best days riding ever. The contrasts in scenery were amazing from towering red sandstone monoliths that iconize Utah to the rushing Colorado River and fertile canyons to gray sandstone that has you thinking you are navigating through a giant ash can to the snow covered peaks of the Boulder mountains. True sensory overload. The only comment that does the scenery justice is that you are coming back as soon as you can to explore further. Turns out it was the only day that Rob, Rik and I would ride together, but it could ... read more
Colorado River Valley
So Many Good Uses for Phone Boxes

North America » United States » Utah » Moab May 2nd 2016

If Sunday was a day of rest, Monday was a day of total rest. We just soaked up the hospitality of Scott and Julie at the 3 step hideaway. This is truly a special place. I have stayed in many B&B’s, but none with this level of hospitality and genuine friendliness. I attribute this special status to a common love - motorcycles and just genuinely friendly people. And before I forget the food was awesome. Scoot showed us around the place from the root cellar and original buildings that go back to the 1890’s to the solar array that provides enough power for the whole place. And of course there was the workshop where he keeps the bikes, spares and much more. Rob and Rik lap up this stuff and I basically just like to ride ... read more
How to Pack for a Trip - Ballast Point at the Ready
View of 3 Step Hideaway

North America » United States » Utah » Moab May 1st 2016

Sunday - a day of rest. After a great brunch at the Eclectic Cafe we took a short ride from Moab out along Route 128 to Castle Valley. An incredibly scenic route along the Colorado River with the red canyons on either side. A motorcyclists dream. Back into Moab and an hour or two outside the closed public library stealing the wifi before heading off to the 3-step hideaway A place Rob had discovered 45 miles south west of Moab past LaSal. A wonderfully remote and self-sufficient place full of bikers and adventurers run by Scott And Julie nestled in the Lisbon Valley. Had fun navigating the K1300 up the dirt track to the hideaway - it was wet and slippery and I had to walk the bike along. Still feeling a bit unsure after ... read more

North America » United States » Utah » Moab April 30th 2016

Great old time saloon for dinner the night before in Durango - a fun town worth a visit. Could hear and see the smoke from the Durango to Silverton steam train as we set off the next morning. I was reminded of those times as a boy sticking my head out of the window only to come back in with soot on my face and a scolding from my mother - how's that for dating oneself. Now it seemed more like a major polluter. Every day riding the country seems like a lifetime of experiences. Today it was the descending slopes of the western Colorado Rockies giving way to the high red desert of Utah. Followed Route 160 out to Kayenta stopping for lunch of a snickers bar and peanuts at Red Mesa, not knowing what ... read more
Obligatory Photo of Wilson's Arch

North America » United States » Colorado » Durango April 29th 2016

Well today had everything including a spill. No it is not a ploy to get you to keep reading. We were expecting rain, but not snow and worse hail. We took Route 84 north, around Espanola it started to rain and the previous beautiful views of canyons and 1-2 mesas gave way to cloud and much lower visibility, but still occasional those beautiful New Mexico vistas characteristic of high desert. On occasion, higher altitudes I guess, the rain turned to snow flakes but nothing was sticking. The temperature was down around freezing but no sign of slippery conditions. Certainly a challenging, but rewarding ride through Abinquiu and Charma. As you can see we stopped along the way to plug in our heated gear. We would not have made it without that cosy warmth. I have never ... read more

North America » United States » New Mexico » Santa Fe April 28th 2016

Today was mainly a slog along I40 to meet Rob. In fact all but the last 60 miles were on I40. The first 300 miles or so were flat and barren even at this time of the year. Occasional wind gusts up to 20 miles and hour kept me on my toes, well gripping the handlebars at least. Not much use of cruise control and one handed riding. I was amazed at the wind farms as I crossed from Oklahoma into Texas. Having always associated Texas with oil it seemed ironic to me - donkey wells replaced by windmills. 9% of power in Texas comes from wind - more than any other state - go Texas! The highlight was a visit to Russell's Car Museum at exit 369 of I40 in New Mexico. Excellent Ruben sandwich ... read more
Russell's Car Museum New Mexico
Route 66 at Newkirk

North America » United States » Oklahoma » Elk City April 27th 2016

Learnt something new about the iPhone today. While it can be on mute you still get that wake up call. What you don't get on mute are emergency alerts. At 12:41am there was a tornado alert in Springdale to take shelter. I woke up at some point hearing thunder, but just grunted and went back to sleep rather than seek the basement of the Quality Inn. I suspect this Inn had bed bugs so a night in the basement may have been worse than the tornado. When I got out to the bike in the morning it was still standing, not even twisted around. The sky was crystal blue and the air fresh as is true after a good overnight rain. It was the start of a 70/70 day. A perfect 70F and maintaining a speed ... read more

North America » United States » Arkansas » Springdale April 26th 2016

So today was the day that makes all that rear end pain worth it - good weather, beautiful scenery, winding roads, no traffic and a bike that seems to like you the more you put it to the test. Headed out west on route 60 starting at the gateway of the Ozark's. Some how I missed most of the scenic riverways described on the map, but it was pleasant enough until I was stung. Many years ago a bee flew into my helmet but did not die. I could hear it buzzing by my ear, but it did not bite until I removed my helmet then it left a nice swelling on my neck. The oracle (Google) tells me there is no reason to assume a bee will not sting in the dark. Perhaps it though ... read more
The Fountains of Bellagio - Branson Style

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