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If you are into special motorcycle or sports car rides - or if you just want to get off of the "beaten" tourist track - consider a ride across northern California's State Highway 36 between coastal highway 101 and the inland Interstate 5. Highway 36 offers a scenic drive between the Sacramento Valley town of Red Bluff (Tehama County) and Fortuna (Humboldt County) near the Pacific Coast. Take your time and enjoy the transitions in climate and topography. Many motorcyclists consider Highway 36 the "Ultimate" bike ride. Sports car fans also enjoy the curvy scenic drive. Any adventuresome biker should check out this site: "Highway 36; The Ultimate Ride!"
Pack a lunch & fuel up before you start from either end. There are not many places for fuel or food along the way. Dinsmore about 50 miles inland from Hwy 101 has fuel and a great store, Mad River has a very decent "Burger Bar," Wildwood has a small store and restaurant, and Platina (closer to the Valley) has fuel & store.
Unless you are really adventuresome, this is not a recommended drive during harsh winter storms. Spring and fall are recommended times.
Updated Dec 5, 2009