Tuesday, September 30, 2014

33rd Annual Oyster Run, Anacortes, WA

Oyster Run at Anacortes, WA, Sept 27/28, 2014.

We were keeping everything crossed in the hopes the Sun God would come out for the 33rd Annual Oyster Run. Last year the skies opened up in mid afternoon and the riders vacated town faster than a speeding bagger at a Sunday School picnic. He did not disappoint this year and we had 2 great sunny days in the middle of a wet period on Fidalgo Island, WA. 

 Left North Van. at only 10 am Sat. as we are not early risers lately. Plus as we all know, a little gas up and walk around takes time. Looked for some other groups along way but most leave a bit earlier from points east.

We did the standard but awesome Chuckanut Drive to Longhorn Saloon in Edison. Had the first of our oysters here although they were saying not good conditions out in Puget Sound. What the hell, in the 70's Don and I ate saucer sized Pacific oysters right off the beach at his Grannies waterfront 200 feet of Hood Canal (she donated it to a Girls Youth group in the end) near Seabeck. I hate paying for these "boutique" oysters the size of a Loonie. But I digress ...

Had to stop downtown and have a bevvie at the Brown Lantern ... of course only a Red Bull and by then it was 5 pm so on to the B & B just 10 blocks west. Our great hosts Amy and Dan were there to greet us and give us the run down and we settled in to the warmth of the setting sun. Beauty view from the deck. Went downtown for some food and fun and ate at the A Town Bistro next to the Brown Lantern bar where we ended up later.

Next morning at 9 am there was a knock on the door and in came smiling Amy and Dan, trays of brekkie in hand and then they left just as graciously. Got on the bikes around 10 am and headed out further west towards the ferry terminal. I had heard about Washington Park from Amy/Dan's guest book. OK, we are on bikes so up we drove around the Loop Road of about 2 miles. The paved road had few people and we lugged as quiet as possible on an absolutely fantastic route. I didn't mind the fog as it reduced the scenery to simplicity and I got some keepers out of it.

By 11 am fog was starting to lift and we headed out to explore Fidalgo Island towards Deception Pass. Ended up stopping on the north side of the bridge and watched and got a few shots of the parade of bikes. By then Clare, says we gotta go down town so went back via Havekost Road to park out back of the Brown Lantern. The party was in full swing so we staked some ground at the front and enjoyed the scene. Typical biker hijinks ensued and by the time we wrapped it for this town at around 5 pm things were starting to wind down. We still had a couple hours to go back home and as we both prefer to ride in daylight, had a beauty ride back through Edison and Chuckanut with the sun fading into twilight and the moon. As always the border wait is a pain but that is the world we live in.

We really enjoyed Fidalgo Island this year. The roads are great and if you want to go further, Whidbey Island is just south with a longer ride and more scenes.

rmk 09/30/14

Monday, January 7, 2013

Ski Season 2012 / 2013 is Great!

The snow just keeps coming and it's turning out to be another record year

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Reflections from European Trip

After leaving Portofino our plan was to meander along the coast and stay at a reasonable place in Monaco or Nice. It was a lovely drive along the Golfo di Genova until we came to the city traffic of Genova (Genoa) and I decided to take the city route through it.

This set us back a bit and by the time we made it to Monaco and had a look around, we decided that high living and gambling were not for us. So it was off to Nice maybe 20 km down the scenic road. Half way there the sun was making it's exit and we rounded a corner and saw the hotel/restaurant, Panoramique perched on the side of the mountain overlooking the Ligurian Sea. Well this was fine as we could dine and sleep all in one, not to mention the great views.

The place was run by a one handed (lost his hand in a motorcycle accident) fifty something man and his younger wife. She did the kitchen work while he managed the bookings and the restaurant serving. He was very much a salesman for his place and we struck a deal for dinner and a room as the sun was setting over the water. Our room had a deck overlooking the coast line a thousand feet below and we savored the view with beer and wine until time for bed.

It was the middle of night when I was awoken by Clare screaming "Get out! Get out!"
"It's ok, Honey ... bad dream. Go back to sleep.", I mumbled. "No, there was someone in our room." she insisted. Daniel who was in the twin bed next to us was up like a shot and ran out to the deck. "Hey, what's my shaving kit doing out on the deck?" he yelled. By then I had come to and the lights were blazing. Apparently my better half couldn't sleep well and had a feeling about this place. After piecing together what had happened we guessed that the cat burglar had crept past my sleeping body next to the door, all the way to the opposite wall where the blue light from a device charger had attracted him and snatched the kit. Seeing nothing of value in it he was returning for seconds, when Clare spied him. Of course by the time I was up and about he was long gone into the bushes.
Lucky for us the thief passed over all the real valuables in the dark and nothing was taken.
When we related this to the owner in the morning, all he could say was, "Tu es tres stupide!". We shan't be returning!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

I had a good portrait session last week with Sam Sullivan. We exchange our stories on West Coast life. From skiing to D/T Eastside to visions of recent Vancouver!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Children's Hospital Charity Ride ~ June 12, 2012

Finally edited the Charity Ride we went on before my European bike tour. (Click on link for video.)http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLQNKgqyHIc&list=HL1348014697&feature=mh_lolz

Friday, August 31, 2012

Europe on a Harley FLHX Streetglide

Austrian / Czech border
Near Hannover, Germany
Wenceslas Square, Czech.
Tyrol, Austria

German Autobahn
Overlooking Krimml, Austria
Path up the side of Kitzbuhel, D.Hill
The Scene of Many CDN D.Hill Victory Parties
Hard Working Austrian Frau
                                                                       HOLLAND TO THE ALPS AND BACK ON AN EAGLERIDER HARLEY: ©robertkwong.com,Photojournalist. It was with much anticipated excitement that in the middle of summer 2012 I picked up my bike from the Eaglerider shop in Haaksbergen, Netherlands. Jan and Bram were most helpful in introducing me to the bike I would be using for the trip, a Harley FLHX Streetglide equipped with saddlebags and a luggage rack for extra gear. I regreted not taking the GPS option in hindsight but in my mind I had a romantic notion of just winging it down any road I chose along the way. There are many, many roads! My rough itinerary was: Holland - Germany (Hannover) - Czech Republic (Prague) - Austria (Kitzbuhel) - Switzerland (Basel) - France (Nancy) - Belgium (Brussels) - Holland. As had been said many times before, there is nothing like experiencing new lands and cultures from the saddle of a motorcycle. The subtleties of crossing from one country to another are greatly enhanced when one is breathing, feeling, smelling and seeing (and eating!) one's way across the country side. A cold beer and some local delicacies in out of the way Gasthofs or Pensions while reflecting on the day's riding was the great reward each day. You meet some great people when riding a motorcycle. Yes, a Harley in Europe is a great conversation starter! I retired at night watching the 2012 London Olympic TV highlights, each night in a different language! As I could write a much longer piece (and will) about the trip I will mention just a few points that come to mind. The autobahn / road networks in Europe are great and GPS is recommended. I preferred to go the twisty way most of the time but if you want to get somewhere quickly, a super highway is just a few kilometres away and they are fast AND well maintained. I have an affinity for the mountains so I had to travel to the Alps and experience the bike travel there. The twisting roads there are a joy! Above the village of Krimml, Austria there are scenes of jaw dropping beauty with scenes of rivers dropping hundreds of meters and verdant fields of neatly cultivated farms on steep mountain sides. I talked to a woman tending to her neat traditional Gasthof and as she smiled at me I remarked to her how hard it must be to work the land. "It's what we do!", she replied. I was pleased to see plentiful motorcyclists astride all makes and types of bikes and trikes, one with a Norwegian family of four with a trailer attached! The cobblestones of Prague and other older parts of Europe can be sketchy when wet and not at top of mind. Riding on two wheels in the busy, hectic larger cities such as Rome, Paris and London is also jaw dropping but of another sort, and that's for a later story! Robert Kwong, Photojournalist, North Vancouver, B.C., Canada

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Monday, March 12, 2012

Whistler Mountain Super G w/ Daniel K

The first day of a 4 day race series was great weather ... then it started snowing heavily for the next 3. That's Whistler!
(Click the title bar for full on POV video)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Rock Creek - Merritt - Whistler Trip

We just finished a 4 day circuit in southern BC. Just great weather ... until we hit Squamish 5o k from home, and a little rain. video

Monday, July 4, 2011

Fishing in the remote Haida Gwaii

videoWent fishing at Langara Fishing Lodge at the northern tip of Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Is.) Big and plentiful fish of all types, excellent food and service staff. Took my buddy Rob who is an expert fisherman and showed me the ropes, err lines! Go see them at Langara Fishing Adventures for a "whale" of a time!

Click on the title for link to HQ video.