Based around the column "Trevor's Travels" published each Sunday in the San Bernardino Sun, with some detours along the way.
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Bends, but not the one I'm talking about!
I've been driving now for close to sixty years. And I can truthfully say that there isn't a road or a part of one that worries me. That includes a lot of foreign ones. I always worry a little when I go back to England that I'll adapt OK to driving on the "wrong" side, but so far so good. However there is one small piece of a local road that has always bothered me. It's Highway 18 from Lucerne Valley up to Big Bear. Locals will recognise the bit I'm talking about as it's the second right-hand hairpin after you reach the first set of twisties. It's a hard right hand and many trucks have gouged grooves into it; also you can't see what's coming the other way. In other words all the things motorcyclists hate. We're not as good with sharp right handers as left - U-turns are nearly always made leftwards. No sight of approaching traffic, very steep and a bad surface all contribute to making this a bad section, and it's only about 100 feet in length. However recently instead of trying to get through it as quickly as possible, I changed down to first gear - there are five on Harleys. Hey Presto, it became manageable. I've been up it a few times since and now always make a point of dropping down to first. And they say you can't teach an old dog new tricks!