Thwarted at John Day again

Today is my second overnight in John Day, OR.  When I’m traveling by motorcycle I typically stay at a Best Western.  It’s a known quantity and I don’t have to worry if I’m going to end up at a murder palace.

Day 3


Today was a surprisingly good day.  Per my revised plan, with input from Angie, I ended up in John Day.  The day started great with perfect riding weather.  Nevada decided that it would rather sacrifice round-tailed ground squirrels via tire smashing then try and blow me off the road.  If my first day had been like today, I’d be fighting looking for alternate ways through Wyoming due to the fatal car collision which closed I-80.

The landscape was beautiful heading back for those of us that like the stark landscape of the high desert.  It slowly became more desert-lush the further north I headed.

Enough time had passed since my last visit though John Day and US route 395 that I forgotten about the crazy hill climb — or rather the decent from the south.  I was thinking to myself that I should recommend this route to my co-worker who likes to take road trips, until I arrived at the decent.

John Day Approach

For those of you scoring at home that is roughly a 2,000 foot drop in about 2 miles as the crow files.  That might not sound like much, but don’t forget to factor in two importing things:  my fear of heights and Oregon’s lack of side rails on roads.  So if I hadn’t been crawling along below the speed limit, white knuckling the handle bars, I would have been biting my nails.

I made it to John Day despite my fears.  I’m staying in a Bates Motel kind of thing because the Best Western in town is yet again full.  I manage to choose the nights when they have some group staying there.  I really need to get better at timing these things.  Although, in my defense I didn’t think I’d end up here until late yesterday.

Tomorrow I should be back in Portland and then off to Chicago via bourgeois airplane means.