Thursday, July 18, 2013

Solvang California - Motorcycle Museum, Walmarts and Foxen Canyon Road

We woke to a cool Solvang morning. The motel rate includes a free coffee and pastry at the bakery across the street. Our usual strategy is to get the coffee and pastry to go, keep the pastry for later and go for a full Danish breakfast at Paula's Pancake House next to the bakery. This morning, Penmaker and Wes had already eaten so Lanny joined us. I had a Danish sausage omelette with Havarti cheese that just hit the spot.

Ready for complimentary coffee and pastry

But what to have?

Now for serious breakfast

Sandy, Lanny and Sherm ready to order

On the way back to the motel, Lanny and I watched a town work crew repainting the red No Parking curb out front. Before they left, they set up two Wet Paint signs on orange cones. As we stood there, a young lady walked around us, stepped in the paint and tracked it down the sidewalk.

Painting the curbs

Note the footprints

Just before 10:00 AM, Cat led us out of the parking lot as Jim blocked traffic and took us the short distance to the Solvang Vintage Motorcycle Museum. The museum was locked and Cat had to call to remind them of the arrangement because they open by appointment only. We had been here two years ago and the collection was about the same. I took many pictures but just posted a few that show bikes I was particularly interested in.

Waiting for the motorcycle museum to open

Lots of bikes on display

And more.....

Brough Superior like the one Lawrence of Arabia died on

Early Burgman?

But the motor is in the wheel

Vincent Rapide

Kawasaki two stroke 750 triple

1976 GL1000 GoldWing Limited Edition

Mike Hailwood bike - worth over $1,000,000

After we were done at the museum, Jim laid out a long ride that he had planned. Instead, Sherm, Sandy and Lanny needed to make a trip to Walmart so we passed on the adventure ride and decided to go to Lompoc. Penmaker, Wes and Ray decided to tag along with us. I led out of town and headed out 246 through Buellton. As we got closer to the coast, the temperature dropped to the mid 60's and the marine layer fog was visible on the horizon.

Downtown Solvang

Meeting another group

Santa Barbara wine country

Our group

Pretty colours in the field

Not mountains, marine layer fog

In Lompoc, the GPS took us right to Wally World. Lanny was trying to buy a new phone and the very motivated young lady at the phone counter was trying to sell him one, but they didn't have the one both of them thought he needed in stock. She was nice enough to call the Walmart in Santa Maria where they set one aside for him.

On the way out of town, we stopped at a Circle K so Ray could fuel the trike and Sherm could check out the coffee. Then we headed out on Highway 1 across a corner of Vandenburg Air Force Base to Santa Maria, which seemed to be one large mall.

Sandy and Sherm went to the Walmart grocery store (a separate building) while Lanny went to the big Walmart and I sat outside with the GPS trying to figure a route home. After the business was done, we hunted for a Subway for lunch. It was a good thing Lanny has excellent eyes because I would never have found it in the mall. Wes, Ray, Sandy and I had Subway while Sherm, Penmaker and Lanny had wings next door.

Water cascading in Santa Maria outside Subway

I had plotted a route that would take us back to Los Olivos via Foxen Canyon Road. This was a road we traveled two years ago where I got us lost in a vineyard, something Cranky has never let me forget. This time, I missed a turn on Foxen Canyon oad and found myself traversing another vineyard on what turned out to be Santa Maria Mesa Road. The GPS told ne it was a dead end but perseverance and dumb luck won out. Where the Zumo said it ended, we found a road that brought us back to the very road we were supposed to be on. I led at a leisurely pace all the way to Los Olivos, stopping at the intersection with all the destination signs for a photo opportunity.

Picking some kind of produce

Combination of lush and arid

Some kind of palm tree

Foxen Canyon Road

Some plants are just for decoration

Signs, signs, everywhere a sign....

Wild lavender on Foxen Canyon Road

We went through Los Olivos and stopped at the Clairmont Lavender Farm, a regular stop. The lavender was looking decidedly brown and the owner aid the recent heat had wiped out the current crop. That was really too bad.

At the lavender farm

Sherm and Lanny at the lavender farm

Burnt lavender

Leaving Clairmont Farms, we proceeded back into Los Olivos and caught Ballard Canyon Road. I suggested Lanny go ahead and play while I led the group at a more rational pace. He did just that but did stop to get photos of us when we finally did catch up to where he was. Some of the pavement on this road has deteriorated quite a bit in the last two years.

Ballard Canyon Road

Interesting combination of flora

Live oaks on brown grass

Gnarly branches

Spotted horse

As we entered Solvang, I took a right on Laurel Avenue and was able to bypass most of the downtown traffic on our way to the motel. We pulled in and got our boots off since the day had turned decidedly warm.

Back in Solvang

A few of us were sitting outside discussing supper plans when an older lady called for help from the end of the motel. Her 76 year old husband had fallen down the stairs from the second floor and was laying on the landing, semi-conscious. Lanny worked to keep him from moving while I called 911. A fire engine and ambulance were there within minutes and we got out of their way and let them work. They left heading for a hospital in Santa Barbara.

Solvang Emergency Response

We decided to eat next door at the Big Bopper Drive-In. As we circled through the courtyard to see who was coming, we found Jim and Cat were going back to Santa Maria with Howard and Linda in their Kia Soul for chicken fried steak. We also found Cranky had finally arrived after his arduous trip, but he doesn't do supper. The Bopper crowd ended up consisting of Sandy and I, Sherm, Lanny, Wes and Penmaker.

There was a large selection on the menu. I settled for a very good pastrami sandwich and curly fries while Sandy had a chicken Caesar salad and a root beer float. It wasn't a bad meal but I shook myself up by reading a real estate magazine on the area. I didn't realize there could be that many multi-million dollar homes in one area.

Cranky has landed

The Soul leaving for Santa Maria

the Big Bopper Drive-In

Us at the Big Bopper
Wes waits as Penmaker orders

After supper, we mingled in the parking lot and then I went inside to finish this blog. Now that it is ready to post, I believe I will go outside and mingle some more.

Today's Route (89 motorcycle miles):

No comments: