Thursday, June 18, 2015
Palo Alto to Patterson, CA
So having had a great day with Lisa in Palo Alto I left at about 4pm thinking I'd head to Yosemite. I had a quick look at the map and saw a road – Highway 130 east – that seemed to head there in a straight line... a shortcut I thought. Well not exactly. Not at all!
The 130 from San Jose to Patterson was certainly no shortcut, but it was one of the most amazing rides of this whole trip. This road even has it's own Wikipedia page, and if you look it up you'll see the first part of it at least is very popular with local motorcyclists. It starts off extremely twisty and rapidly climbing until you eventually get to an observatory at the top of what I think must be Mt Hamilton? Then dropping down the other side you head into these beautiful valleys. And it just carries on for aaaaaages. It's awesome. Beautiful and fun to ride, but it takes a lot longer than it looks like it might. I saw a bunch of wildlife on the road (deer, snakes, and goats), and a car accident – some chick had missed a tight corner. There was already a fire truck etc there, so I didn't stop.
Needless to say I didn't make it to Yosemite! I popped out the end of the magnificent HWY 130 to find the town of Patterson, which, given the beauty of what I'd ridden through, I thought might be a pretty cool town. It wasn't! It was pretty damn awful I'm sorry to say. So I hit the road for another few miles and pulled into an interstate truckstop kinda place. A shitty run-down old motel that only cost $40 for a night. I actually really liked this place. The lady there was nice, and it was kinda beautiful in a dilapidated way. It was pretty much dark by the time I got there. I took the photo in the morning.