This day was all about pushing the limits. This was RACE DAY!
In an unfamiliar area the better routes are not for certain until you talk to friends. The greatest of caregivers make a hearty breakfast again, nurturing their adult children before they are sent out to the vast playground. Maps lay about the cabin, overhearing conversations from many. The same word repeating through out them all “Paradise”. An area of Mt. Rainier only a stones throw away from the cabin, we only knew of it being a twisted up bunch of lines on the map. Our excitement and curiosity had grown and the final decision was made. We will align ourselves with a fast group and take the route through Paradise. Hurry up and get ready.
Not a minute down the road we hit the booth to buy the tickets to ride the amusement park. Rollercoaster cars made by Ducati, Triumph, BMW, Yamaha and Kawasaki, and we don’t wait in any lines! If only my wallet wasn’t back at the cabin…”Crap!” Be back in a jiffy. Loyalty of the LIRC, thanks for not leaving us behind. Now… lets go!
Minimal camera work through most of this ride, the unfortunate side effects of having so much fun. “Hang the hell on Aaron and put the camera away!”
With barely a straight section throughout the park, it was rhythmic. Carve right, transition left and hold speed, power out and let her drift outward, slam through the gears and set up for the next one. Fish hook after fish hook the signs pointing out whats ahead, and it wasn’t no damn fishing trip! I was honestly real impressed with the 50/50 tires we had on, never once did I feel they weren’t up for the job, I was surprised really. This was rippin’ fun all the way to the top, and the day was only just beginning.
Winding down the other side of the mountain the road continues to keep you leaning. Leaning and smiling. It wasn’t till you ride out of the mountains and into the desert that things took an uncomfortable turn. “Get me out of this damn sweaty suit!” We were all feeling the effects of the heat as we rolled into Taco…Burrito…Nachos… thats it, the town of Naches. It was the heat, my brain got fried there. A good break and light lunch.
Break Down! Or can you call an electrical issue that? 40 degrees or more and suited up ready to go and our 2018 Tiger wouldn’t start. “Oh damn”. Pushed into the shade we trouble shooted the issue. Pulled the battery lead in hopes for a reset of the computer would randomly fix it, nope. Its all powered up but is acting like the kickstand is down in gear, or the clutch isn’t pulled in on start up. A quick check for damage at the kickstand switch with no result. This lead me to the clutch switch. “Flick flick”. Yup that was it! Bad contact at the clutch switch. Gotta like the simple ones. Now lets get the hell out of here and find some place for a swim.
Road side breaks can sometimes be a little disappointing. To populated, no shade, a decent swim hole or swarms of insects in some areas. We were lucky to have found a gem of a spot. Completely vacant, we pulled up to our private riverside retreat. So I stripped down naked and jumped on in! No, no, no JK. If I had done that everyone would be blind and we would never make it back!…If we ever have a night ride break down you could just rip my shirt off and stand me at the edge of the road, I could be a god damn human pylon…you get the idea. This place was just a good fun break to hang out, chat and cool off.
Taking the loop back to Paradise, the name started to loose its shine as it can feel more like P…P…Parking Lot during the mid afternoon. Sight seers and RVs backing it up in often too long of a line. This making it way to unsafe to pass. No huge loss however, take a look around, its a beautiful place.