All rides are good. Anything over 200 miles where you sleep somewhere new is memorable. Some are more memorable than most.
Early Friday afternoon I rode north to meet my brother Pat at Beryl Junction, about 50 miles away. He rode down from Salt Lake and it’d been a while since we’d ridden together. A few months. I was pretty glad to see him. I’ve said this before, but it’s pretty effortless to ride with him. We’ve settled into a good mixture of fun, beers, an occasional cigar, and busting each others chops. It’s always good company, and Pat is a rider to the core.
We rode the 50 miles to Caliente and stopped at the Knotty Pine for a brew and some burgers. We thought about staying in Caliente for the night, but decided to head on into Rachel Nevada, and I’m glad we did. We rode, Wyatt Earp Style. Great Fun.
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Rachel was great. we had supper there and a few more beers and The Little A’Le’Inn was a nice place to stay. Good Service, cheap prices and interesting people. We we smoked cuban cigars and drank 18 year old scotch as the sun set on the nevada desert. We crashed pretty early, watching Soylent Green on the VCR. Soylent Green, as you know, is people.
I gotta tell you, if you can’t have a good time riding to the UFO capital of the world on the edge of Area 51, smoking cuban cigars, 18 year old scotch and staying in a single wide trailer converted into a motel room watching Soylent Green…. well, your wick is wet. Have If you haven’t seen it, here’s a preview:
Chuck heston is the Shit. I swear the man does his own stunts, in a leisure suit no less! Charleton Heston is my president. I’m gonna be a dick and give you the spoiler right now. If you don’t want to know it, then don’t click this one:
Side note: There, I found the cure for a sore throat at 11 pm at night. A “Nuclear Bomb” is 3/4 shotglass of Tobasco sauce, and 1/4 shotglass of tequila. Instant cure.
The next morning we woke up, skipped breakfast and headed 50 miles to warm springs. Warm Springs Nevada i’ve been to a few times, but this time we checked out the hot springs and some of the old structures. Lots of ghosts there with some unknown stories. I’d still love to hear of someone who knows when warm springs was alive and kicking.
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From warm Springs we went into Tonopah and finally had cell service again, called our wives and had lunch, then moved onto Beatty.
Then we found Goldfield. I wished we’d spent more time there. At one time it was a town of 30,000 people as a Nevada Boom town from the turn of the 20th century. 400 people live there now, mostly because it’s still the county seat. Some neat old artifacts and really old buildings in great shape. I want to go back. Supposedly, the hotel is haunted, and we just drove right by it, not knowing.
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From there on, it was just hot. Well over 100, we opened up and made time. We still had to get to what was our loose destination, the Ghost town of Ryolite Nevada. We pulled in around 1:30 and gassed up, and found us a good bar to settle into to decide what was next. We decided to stay for the night. Our original plan was to ride to Mt Charleston, 100 miles away and tent for the night. We both realized that the 4th of july weekend would make it rough to get a camp spot. Besides, this was a pretty good bar! and there was 3 more next to it, and a hotel across the street where we could park the bikes and walk. We got a room, and then headed into Rhyolite.
Rhyolite Nevada is a ghost town I’d seen on the history channel a week earlier, and realizing it was not all that far away, wanted to go see it. We headed the 4 miles up the road to go check it out.
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Rhyolite started in 1904 when gold was discovered. by 1908 Rhyolite had 10,000 people, forty-five saloons, 3 of the most modern banks in the state, an opera house, a Stock Exchange, a slaughterhouse, two railroad depots, three public swimming pools and dozens of businesses. Rhyolite supported over 85 mining companies. It had power, piped water, telephones, sidewalks and entertainment.
By 1909, it had less than 1,000 people. By 1915, 20 people. by 1924 it’s last remaining resident died.
All that’s left is some of the most bitchen ruins I’ve ever seen. Including a house made up entirely of bottles, a full train depot, and crumbling buildings.
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We stopped and had a beer in the heat, and tripped out over the history and archetecture of a city who’s time had long since passed. It’s amazing to see that in only 100 years a town can disappear. Monolith’s to the history of man.
We took a dirt road deeper into Rhyolite to check out the old jail. When we pulled up, a woman approached us and explained she was making a movie and asked if she could use one of our bikes. I said no. I did not know this woman, and quite honestly, noone sits on my bike but me unless I know them pretty well. Pat was much more open and talked me into letting them use it in their movie.
So a girl got out of her car, walked up to my bike, and started taking off her clothes. It got pretty interesting, and I found that I was hasty in saying no so quickly. I’m a happily married man who is loyal to my wife. This was also not what I thought I’d find at Rhyolite. They were 5 kids from UCLA making a movie about a muslim woman. I started up the bike so they could get the full effect. I will say this, they have good taste in motorcycles. Fast women I think, can sense speed.
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We shook hands, got a picture or two and headed back to the bar to have dinner.
Beatty nevada was a pretty cool town for a town of 1100 people. We found a good spot that served a mean sandwitch, the right kind of beer, and listened to a classic rock band play songs directly from my Ipod and had a great time. Even the fireworks in beatty we’re pretty good. You could sense the town pride.
We staggered back to the motel and crashed. Pat headed out around 7 to make the long ride back to Salt Lake. Thats another nice thing about riding with my brother – we don’t get get butt hurt — either one of us — if we split off to do our thing. We’re both pretty self-contained. I realized he had to go, and he realized I was probably a bit hung over and was 3 hours from home. Around 9 I headed out of town, and made it home.
Great ride. Quite honestly, the whole weekend was great. Maybe my favorite ride I’ve done. Always wanted to stay in Rachel, and being with my bro just made it fun.
641 miles, 3 states, 3 days.