Saturday, November 26, 2011

Another step in Winter storage preparation

After getting the fuel prepared with stabilizer couple weeks ago, I took another step today towards my first motorcycle Winter storage.  Took the battery out and hook it up with Battery Tender Jr :)  next step: give it a wash and put the cover on then say "see you in several months" (hopefully as few months as possible).

Sunday, October 2, 2011

This is really it for my 2011 riding

Just as I thought I already had my final ride of 2011, there was still one bright and sunny Sunday morning allowing me a bonus ride! With the insurance on my Ninja 250R expiring in couple days, this has got to be it of my first riding season. It is time to prepare for storage months.

It has been a wonderful 5-month riding experience from never having been on a motorcycle at the beginning of the course to now with 2000+ km of riding on my very own motorcycle :) The upcoming rainy seasons will be dark and will feel long at times, but that will only make welcoming the next riding season that much better!

Spent more time riding than taking photos!  Just a quick snapshot at a short stopover.

End of the bonus ride.  Topping up with zero-ethanol stuff ready for some Stabil soon.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Riding to kick off holidays

The 2nd last day of September turned out to be a nice Summer-like day. It was also the 1st day of some days off, what better way to kick that off with a nice ride before my rookie riding season draws to an end!

A shot that says "I was here"

One just for the view

End of the ride: topping it up with zero-ethanol gas, readying for storing soon.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Autox event #4 this year

Attended the 4th out of 5 scheduled autox event of my rookie season.  Autox rain or shine and on this day, it was autox from rain to shine!

Since attending the previous rookie series event back in April, I turned my focus to motorcycle riding (learning, taking road test, going on rides, etc.) instead of attending as many other autox events as available.  The result was clear, my so-so autox skills stay put while others improve :D  The positive I take away is that I did not become a worse autox driver due to inactivity ;) and it was still fun driving at autox.

This autox box hasn't been used for almost 5 months!

Why does it always rain on my autox day?!?

The never to-scale course map, makes walking the course that much more important!

Sun finally came out!

My highest g-loads run of the day

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Another sunny September Sunday perfect for riding

Visited another new spot in my first year of riding, another water front location at a nearby suburb area.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Destination Squamish: ride (on Wed) & drive (on Sat)

This Wednesday I have put together a string of "firsts" on my bike as I joined in on a group ride:
  • first midweek ride (other than few times of short commute)
  • first evening ride INTO night ride (had to change from dark smoke to clear visor!)
  • first Sea-to-Sky ride
Here are couple fairly bad photos at the destination rest point. I rushed the shots as I was trying to embark on my solo ride into the night towards home soonest possible :p

Overall, it was a great ride!  The group was friendly and I was able to ride at a good pace in my comfort zone along several others without feeling hassled.  The roads offered great elevation changes and twisties; scenery was amazing although I made sure I kept my eyes on the road!  I am also very pleased with how I handled the ride back as it really got dark.  Riding at night is a very different experience, awareness kicked into overdrive, that is quite a rush in itself :D

As I enjoyed the roads and scenery from Wednesday so much, I just had to drive my wife there in my S2000. So tonight we went on an evening-into-night cruise, this time there are better photos!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Returning to where it all started... for my riding days.

As I am still trying to not yet repeat any full route I have gone on, I found myself riding on some highway stretches that lead me back to where it all started for my riding days.  The wonderful Pacific Riding School where I learned my skills as a safe and confident rider :D

PRS is a great riding school!!
A class in session at the lot across the street
No, I did NOT help my Ninja with any free gas :D

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Great ride on a hot Summer day!

It was apparently the hottest day so far this Summer reaching 30C in parts of the city. I spent much of the 130km riding on highways with nice sweeping curves and open roads, thoroughly enjoyed the warm wind. Part of the ride led me to a popular local beach packed with people and cars circling to find parking spots - no such problem for a motorcycle, easily parked it and took some photos :)

After today's ride, I can honestly say that riding on a hot day like today really does not get as hot and sweaty as one might expect.  The key is to put some considerations in the routes and avoid stop-n-go, heavily congested traffic.  I always ride with all my protective gears (textile jacket and over-pants, gloves, boots and of course helmet :p) and just wear different top, jeans or shorts under depending on temperature range.  I seriously have not broken a sweat on my bike!  In fact, I have to make sure I zip my jacket up fully so that I don't end up getting a cough from the wind while traveling at speed.

Looking over to beautiful downtown skyline - NO WAY that I would ride there on a hot day like today!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

2-part ride

After couple of fairly busy weekends, managed to fit in a short but fun 2-part ride this Sunday afternoon :D

Part 1
Took to the nearby highway and bridge crossings.  I think I "invented" a fun little route taking me to less traveled areas, complete with sweeping curves on wide open highway ramps and quiet main roads (not busy on Sundays!) with modest twists.

Part 2
On the return leg, swung over to pick up some items for the pantry.  This small tank bag can be a handy grocery bag too! 

Just sauces and stuff for the pantry

Monday, August 1, 2011

Another 100km on another perfect riding day!

I came across a site last night with some good local routes suggestions, it was perfect timing as I was hoping to get another ride in but didn't want to repeat any route done so far.  The route I did today combines some familiar roads that are not often traveled and some places I know of but have almost never even driven out to.  Riding is truly allowing me to explore some cool places not too far from home!

Today's route was mostly around water front and away from inner city traffic, so heat was not a problem at all.

The very reflective building across the river is the airport.

It has stopped completely on the track but wait was not long at all and there was ocean breeze.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

My Ninja is becoming my own "traveling garden gnome"

Had another good riding day with great weather.  Took my Ninja to couple more landmark places around my city, it is quickly becoming my very own "traveling garden gnome" :D  Highly doubt it will ever make its way around world's landmark though.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Completing a Sunday hat trick

Thoroughly enjoyed F1 German GP this morning then the MotoGP race at Laguna Seca in the afternoon, wrapped it all up by taking an early evening ride up a local mountain visiting a familiar place.  No I didn't try to imitate Stoner or Lorenzo, I ride sensibly and safely on the roads :D

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Added another 100km seat time alongside a buddy

This Sunday, I finally met up with a buddy visiting from hundreds of kilometers away.  We picked the perfect time for our ride as it stayed dry - dry enough for most of the time anyway.  Here are some snapshots after our moderate ride covering ~100km round trip.

A pair of bikes at opposite ends of performance scale :D

It's all accessorized for long road trip storage

Looks as beautiful as it is comfortable!

1198cc of goodness

Nice looking tailpipes

Sunday, July 3, 2011

1st group ride since "graduating"

Today I went on my 1st group ride (link to forum post) since "graduating" from PRS and completing my class 6 license.  What an experience!!  I must say it felt pretty cool to be one of the group riders that people were turning head to look at (some may be haters, but who cares LOL)

I was in awe with so many bikes and riders there at the starting meet location; only to be told that while it was a good turn-out but there have been and will be bigger attendance in group rides!  It's so exciting to see and hear all the cool bikes, I am glad I wasn't too excited and was able to ride safely :p

Even though I didn't ride the entire route (I did ~80% [correction: more like 65% in ride time] before departing at a pre-determined spot), the parts that I rode were already great; with some types of routes I had yet to experience before!  So far on all the solo rides that I have done, I did mostly open highway plus short distances on suburb residential streets getting on/off the highway.  Today, it was open highway: same stretch I have done prior, so no biggie, it was a nice warm-up; then some moderate twisties around the West edge of the city... next up, through the heart of downtown core... the busy intersections could get intense but that was all nice and good.

The next big highlight was some more twisties uphill and downhilll, fairly narrow at parts... one lane each direction.  I have never even driven a car through that part of town, so I was in for a bit of a surprise while winding my way through them.  I am sure I could have done better (i.e. smoother, NOT faster) and caused less worries for the tail rider (whom I still have to id and contact to thank!) in my group; but overall I really enjoyed it and fairly pleased with how I rode.  I will be back to ride that stretch and be better and better at it!