Well Done, @Gaijin
for this brilliant road trip post. Great narrative coupled with excellent photos. A worthy winner!
His willing post follows below.....
Hello fellow 9T riders.
I just clicked 30.000 km last week and it's my 2nd year with the 9T.
So many memories on this bike. Whoever said bikes have no soul I can certainly tell you this black beauty has been everything I needed to deal with a domino of bad events that happened the past few years.
What better way to celebrated her 2nd birthday than getting lost out of Tokyo for a day.
I had an early start about 5 AM and the weather was predicted to be cloudy at worst. Mind you in Japan weather changes sometimes in a very unpredictable way and this day was one of those times.
I decided ride towards Fuji mountain which is about 127km away from Tokyo.
It took me about 2 hours to reach Fuji and the weather was fine till the clouds started coming in. Now I hate to admit but I am very protective of my 9T when it comes to weather and I tried to hit the way down to the coast of Izu through the mountain to avoid rain.
Without navigation and plenty of road ahead after 267 km I arrived in Shimoda that is a coastal town in the prefecture of Izu.
Luckily while getting lost I came at the end of a road which was a private beach that is monitored by a marine biology university.
It was about 3PM by now and I was already starving so searched for a cafe or something. To my surprise I found a cafe that happened to be the first cafe established after Japan was opened to foreigners after the Second World War owned by a 97 year old who is the first owner and still runs it.
Interesting shot of the inside. Old school as **** and the owner still rides a Honda Super cab at 97 years old.
After having probably one of the best coffees and toast I had in japan the radio gives a tsunami warning as an earthquake hit near the Izu peninsula.
So back on the 9T aiming at the mountain and thinking that would be interesting to get a different way back to Tokyo.
Sun is already setting and I am running through the twisties hoping to get back to Hakone as quickly as possible as the roads get misty and have no lighting.
2 hours later is pitch black I am still on my way up and to make things even better temperature drops by 12 degrees and a snowstorm hits.
Gasoline lamp comes on and no soul , no visibility , no reception on phone , nothing in sight.
I see a fork on the road going downwards steeply so I take my chances engine on with clutch in and start going down only with breaks.
Snow already blanketing the road but such a surreal experience so staying focused and 1 hour later I see life.
It was a big road with a sign saying Hakone 130 KM. I was completely the opposite way but with no gas finally the snow was converted to rain and was able to find gas.
Hot coffee and a smoke and back on the 9T with 361 km left back to Tokyo.
Finally arrived in Tokyo at 11PM with clear skies and a lot of good memories.
It's fair to say that it could have happened on any bike but it did on my 9T the bike that I respect greatly for being what it is and the comfort it has given me in the good times and the bad times.
So happy second birthday my black queen.
Thank you everyone for reading. A few shots from the latest outings.
Remember ride safe and love what you do.