The 2.5 Mile Ride is a weekend ride put together by a group of GL1800 GoldWing riders
from the GL1800Riders.com internet forum. This was our first time on the 2.5 but
it was the 9th anniversary of the event. We went to it with Sam and Trish, who have
been to it before. The riders come from as far away as northern California, British
Columbia and the eastern parts of Washington and Oregon. There were about 45 bikes
at this year's event. You can read more about it at this forum.
As I understand it the name originates with an early ride that they were on when
one of the riders asked the leader how far they were from the end. The reply was
"two and a half miles", but it actually was closer to fifty miles. Henceforth all
the rides have only been "2.5 miles" long (no matter how long they took or where
This year the event was held in Coos Bay, Oregon. Coos Bay is a town on the Oregon
coast about two thirds the way down on Highway 101.
But first we have to get there. We are doing a camping trip with Sam and Trish and
picking up Grand Tour checkpoints along the way. To read about that follow this
link, it will lead you back here when done.
We arrived on Friday afternoon and checked in to the Red Lion hotel. The organizer
of our event had reserved and been promised a block of rooms so we could all be together. That
didn't happen, we were randomly assigned rooms around the parking lot. So we kind
of gathered wherever and talked rides and bikes.
People scattered for dinner and regrouped for more discussion in the evening. One
big topic was where was the 2.5 going this year. As a change this year there were
several routes for people to take instead of one route with several groups based
on the riding speed of the operators. One of the routes was going to cover the same
Rouge River road we had traveled earlier on Friday, another was over mountain roads
we had traveled a few years ago and the last was a run down the coast to the Redwoods. We
chose this route for two reasons: one, it is beautiful run and, two, it passed a
California liquor store. California liquor is about two thirds the price of liquor
in Oregon or Washington. We wanted to stock up.
After Saturday morning's rider's meeting where the options were offered and hazards
were discussed we headed out.
Yes, that is a GoldWing, or at least the engine, handlebars and dashboard are. It
is a TBX3 and is homebuilt by a man in northern California. It leans in the corners
but is a tricycle format with two front tires. You can Google TBX3 for more information.
We were the second of six bikes on a dry day with a light overcast of clouds. Beautiful
riding weather along the coast.
This ride is a planned 150 miles (240 km.), one way, to the "Trees of Mystery" tourist
site in the California Redwoods.
After a (wife mandated) cruise through the gift shop we went across the street to
have lunch. The cafe had an "underwater" theme, and we were the ones underwater. We
could look up and see the bottom half of ducks and a rowboat as well as fishing lines
Then it was time to head back north. We dropped back in the line so that we could
get some pictures with more than just one bike in it.
California was being specially nice to us. They put up signs to tell all the natives
that we were there. They did that just for us didn't they???
As this was the "I R Harry Memorial Ride" for a fallen comrade Dayle spoke about
Harry at the dinner held Saturday night.
After dinner we sat around the motel in front of our rooms and talked, that is until
the management came and told to quiet down.
The next morning we left without Sam and Trish as they had told us they wanted to
So we headed north up the coast on Hwy 101 to Florence, another checkpoint in our
Grand Tour ride. Today the weather has turned rainy and cold. Much more typical
for the coast in mid-May.
Mo's is not open at this time of the morning so we cannot get our passbook stamped. That
doesn't matter because a picture is just as good. We will print them out and tape
it to the proper page in the book.
We now have the minimum number of checkpoints to qualify for a ticket in the drawing
at the Grand Tour dinner in October.
At Newport we turned east and headed inland to our next checkpoint. We stopped for
lunch at the R&R cafe in Burnt Woods. We now have eleven checkpoints and two tickets
in the drawing.
Then we continued east to I-5 and north to home. We made it without incident although
riding a freeway in the rain is not my favorite ride.
Our next planned ride is to central Oregon for a camping trip with friends for a
birthday party for Florian in late June. Check it out at Camping and Checkpoints.