Saturday morning started out early–eggs and coffee at 6 am, and getting ready for a ride with my best riding buddy, Dick West. I’d been off the bike for months due to my broken hand so I was especially excited to get a day of riding in.
I typically drive to Dick’s place because it’s a 3 hour drive one way on super slab and heavy traffic. Once there, I have a few options of bikes I can ride so it works out well.
The drive was going quickly since there wasn’t much traffic. I was enjoying an extra cup of coffee while listening to the Eagles and excited to get to my destination. About 30 minutes from Dick’s place, my car started to rev pretty high while driving up a hill. I was losing power and slowing down pretty rapidly.
Long story short, my clutch went out. I was able to creep to the nearest exit in first gear and park it at a gas station where I waited for the tow truck and Dick to come pick me up.
It was NOT how I pictured my riding day would begin. But, I was grateful I was near an exit and not somewhere way up in the hills miles from a repair shop.
Dick and I decided to go back to his place, grab the bikes and go ride to lunch while we waited on the dreaded phone call of how much and how long it would take to fix my car. Dick took out his Bonnie, and I took out his other “Triumph”.
We rode from his place (Garden Valley) to Placerville for lunch at the Buttercup Restaurant via hwy 49. It was a beautiful ride on curvy, tree-lined roads that went through the little gold rush town of Coloma.
After lunch, we rode back to Dick’s place and that’s when I got the call. My car would stay at the repair shop in Shingle Springs until mid-week with a repair cost of around $1,000. Dick offered up his Miata so I could get home. The weather was perfect for a “topless” drive back to Oakland.
It was not the most ideal situation, but I’m glad it happened where it did and not at home on the Bay Bridge or some other crowded freeway in the Bay. When I go to pick my car up, we’ll give our epic riding day another shot, hopefully without incident.