RR75: Skaggs Road

On October 3rd, 2021, Akshay (KTM 1290 Super Adventure), Ayon (KTM 1290 SuperDuke) and me (Kawasaki W650) rode some of the roads in the North Bay, including Stewarts Point-Skaggs Springs Rd and Hwy 128. This was my first long ride on the W650 and I was apprehensive of mechanical breakdowns and problems.

We left Fremont early Sunday morning (after a hour delay by Ayon) and our first gas stop was at the Chevron in San Rafael. We exited Hwy 101 on Dry Creek Road in Healdsburg and rode over to Skaggs. The first part of Skaggs was amazing, superbly banked curves, great tarmac quality and no real traffic. About 10 miles in, Skaggs turns into a single lane bumpy, goaty, road. This was fun too, but not as much as those nice sweepers. There was a short section of construction along the way where the road turned to dirt, and the W handled it with ease. After the bridge, we stopped and took some pictures.

Skaggs ends in Hwy 1, and from there we rode up to Gualala. We got gas, and had lunch at Trinks Cafe. The (veggie) burger was very average but I was happy to sip on some Boont Amber Ale.

From there we rode up Hwy 1 and then took Hwy 128 back to 101. The Pacific side of Hwy 128 is definitely one of my favorite roads – I first rode it in 2014, RR34.

We gassed up again in Booneville and made the long freeway struggle back home. It was very hot and the long freeway drone made me tired. Anyway, the W650 did very well. Not a hiccup there and I loved how easy and comfortable it is to ride. It has enough power to be entertaining, and I ran it to 105 mph on a long flat top-speed run. Overall it did the twisties and the freeways just fine. The only limitation on that bike is the tank range. The bike “comes on reserve” at 100-115 miles and I probably have another 30 miles after that. So a conservative tank range of 140 miles, is really the only limiting factor.

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