Sunday, April 07, 2013

Uraling to Alaska - Day 2: Bryce Canyon and the Grand Staircase Escalante Monument

April 6, 2013

A rather disappointing day in terms of obtained pictures, and then Valencia's clutch starting acting up late in the afternoon.

Woke up before the crack of dawn, and briskly got some coffee going as it was a cold 25 degrees farenheit in the campground! Still in the dark, I left on Valencia, heading once more through the open gates of the Bryce Canyon National Park. I was, by far, not the only one with ideas to take pictures of the rock formations during sunrise!

There was a whole group of folks at the overlook site named fittingly Sunrise Point. Lots of expensive looking cameras abounded, and then there was me, with my point and shoot. I hope they got better pictures than I did.

Sunrise Point, at Sunrise....

For the above shot, I hiked down the trail....hiking back up was "strenuous"

After I got my breath back, Valencia and I rode to the other scenic overlook sites, taking pictures where the sun favored it. Not too many turned out in this effort either but I did get some nice riding in within the park.

I was back at the camp by 10:00 AM and was ready to go by 10:30.

I spent most of the day riding on Utah State Highway 12, labeled a scenic ride as it crosses through the Grand Staircase Escalante Monument. It took way longer than I thought but the views were fantastic.

Escalante Overlook

At the fuel stop after the above picture was taken, I noticed that Valencia's clutch seemed to be hanging, the rig wanting to move even with the clutch lever fully depressed.

I tried adjusting the clutch cable to no avail. There was riding to be done so I kept going, just having to manually raise the idle a bit at stops as the motorcycle wanted to keep going, until I could put it into neutral. Rather annoying.

What was even more annoying was the tremendous head winds I encounter throughout most of the afternoon as I neared my overnight destination of Provo, UT. They caused Valencia to struggle mightily on the uphills, more than usual anyways, and at times had me wondering if there was something mechanically wrong!

When the wind would let up or change the angle it was hitting me at, Valencia would perform fine.

I got a bit mis-oriented at times but finally found my way to Interstate 15 and headed north on it towards Provo. Upon arrival, got myself a room in Orem, which is the next city along I-15. Luckily traffic was pretty light since it was Saturday and I was just able to toodle along at 60 mph! The winds never did let up for more than a few minutes if at all. I felt quite beat-up by the winds and Valencia's clutch behaviour.

I checked into the hotel, too tired to camp, and then after unpacking went to fiddle with Valencia's clutch cable after a discussion with fellow Uralista Darrell S. After some back and forth discussion, I decided to leave things alone for now and to call the URAL dealer in Oregon on Tuesday to schedule an appointment to have the clutch checked out.

Of course, after that decison was made, I tried starting her up to go get something to eat. Wouldn't you know it, the damn clutch was working just fine! I wonder if it was a heat related issue? I'll feel better once the dealer gives it a check in Salem, Oregon.

Previously: Uraling to Alaska - Day 1: Zion National Park


Lucky said...

Wow! Spectacular photos, and a sweet bike.

I haven't been around on the internet much lately, but I think I'm going to stop in here a lot more frequently...

Canajun said...

The more pictures I see of this area the more excited I am about my September trip!
Hope you get your clutch problems sorted; there's nothing worse than riding with that worry in the back of your mind mile after mile, except of course if you're riding into a 50mph headwind at the same time.
Safe travels!

Lucky said...

I'm not sure if my last comment went through or not, so I hope this isn't a repeat. Anyway...

WOW! Those are some fantastic photos, and that's a sweet bike. I am moderately jealous of the adventure you're having.

I haven't been around on the internet much lately, but I think I'm going to stop back here regularly.

RichardM said...

Sounds like a dry input spline. Do Urals have that same issue? Towards the end of my trip last summer, I ran into the same behavior. After a bit of grease no more problems.

RichardM said...

Forgot to mention that I love your photos of Bryce. One of my favorite Natl' Parks.

Unknown said...


we liked Bryce too but we arrived there right after a snow storm and there was an avalanche on the 2nd ring road and they closed all the trails as they were tired of rescuing the stupid tourists. All of my photos of Bryce have snow in them.

We also drove the Escalante. Thank you for your photos which bring back memories.

I hope your clutch causes no further problems and you can make it to your dealer

Riding the Wet Coast

redlegsrides said...

Lucky, thanks very much. Come back anytime, tell your friends! :)

Canajun, clutch problems are sorted out I think. Dealer is still going to check it out on Tuesday to make sure.

RichardM: Urals don't use input spline, the driveshaft spline into the yoke assembly was lubed with Honday moly at the 20K km mark. It's definitely a clutch drag due to heat issue, but I think I am well on the way to solving it thanks to the help of Uralisti. Glad you liked the pics.

Bobskoot, as per today's posting, clutch issues are apparently resolved, pending checkout by dealer on tuesday.

redlegsrides said...

video added