Joined: Dec 2005
Location: Central MA
5 tags in 3 days, riding in july with OSJ
Tags? What the heck are tags you might be thinking!
Well we've all played tag as a kid, right? This is just like that...well kinda..but played by adults. And on motorcycles!!!!
So here is how it works. Someone goes out and finds a cool thing to park their bike next too, takes a pic and post it up on a message board. Now people have to figure out where it is, ride their bike to it and take the same photo. The first one to post it back to that message board gets the tag. Now they have to post a pic in a different location and post that up. And it continues. Sometimes more than one person might head out on a specific day to find the tag, however the first one to post it wins. There is a term for being second, third (or so on) in the game,its called "bruced" and it makes the game a little more fun. Brucing someone is always fun!!!
Now some message boards have different rules, and even different types of tags. One common one is "themed tag" and is played a little different. Instead of a exacted location for the photo, it is just an item. Like for instance a Church can be the theme. So someone playing in California can claim the 'theme tag" placed by someone in Rhode Island.
I like to play both kinds. And I do it with several message boards. Here is my 3 day adventure in tagging in MA.
Because my busy work schedule this week I wasnt able to take a whole day off and ride. Instead I took several hrs on 3 different mornings to claim these tags. Here are the tags I needed to get.
NER MA Theme tag was a Observatory set by Steve from Maine
Northern New England tag on Adventure Rider was summit road sign on Mt Wachusett by Gail (she rides a beemer) from NH
NER MA tag was the Chain Bridge in Newburyport MA set by Steve from Maine.
Now you may notice that every shot must have either you or your motorcycle in it. Thats because this game is about riding, you must ride you bike to the location to claim your tag!
So Wednesday morning I decided to start my tagging ways. I knew Mt Wachusett was only a few miles away, and luckily I also knew of a Observatory on the way. I figured it would be a good morning for a ride on Michelle's Suzuki DR200. I fired that baby up and headed out. Along the way I stopped for my replacement of the theme tag...a BIG RED BARN
Riding the little DR reminds me of when I first started riding motorcycles way back in 1983 along the dirt roads of Ashburnhams Stodge Meadow Pond. Some 27 years and 400,000 miles later I still get a kick out of tooling around on back roads. Just up the road from the barn I spotted my first tag
I found a few dirt roads in Princeton that lead me to the next location, The beginning of the summit road for Mt Wachusett. Which was in major need of work...it should be a nice road to take to the summit when they are done.
I took my time getting home, but still found myself back to work by 10;30 in the morning. No one bruced me on the two tags I claimed, and I set the new Theme Tag to the Red Barn. The Adventure rider tags has different rules. It must move no less than 50 miles. I didnt have the time to do that Wednesday so it was gonna have to wait until Thursday.
Which brings me to the next tag, the NER MA tag was the Chain Bridge in Newburyport MA, exactly 62 miles aways. Perfect I will go claim one, and leave the other with just one pic. This can be done because it was two different messages boards. So I got up early Thursday morning and decided I needed to take the Ducati for a spin. We left my driveway at 5:25, a very quick ride up 495 was in order. It had been awhile since I needed to share the road with a hoard of commuters, and I must say the left lane freight train was in full swing.
I arrive at the tag pretty early
Once the tag shot was taken I worked my way back to 495 to get home. Just up the road I noticed another item I collect while riding.Mass Tercentenary historic markers, The signs of history are all around us in the Commonwealth, including nearly 300 historical markers erected in 1930 by the Massachusetts Bay Colony Tercentenary Commission in the 300th anniversary of the Colony's birth. Rumor has it less than 100 are left, there is a thread on NER (New England Riders) where we are trying to collect photos of them all. http://forums.delphiforums.com/NewEn...es?msg=16793.1
This one was found in Amesbury MA.
I needed to be home no later than 8:30 so I could drive Grace to camp, so I didnt have time to explore. I pulled into my driveway at 7:15, walked into a quite house of sleeping people. Tag placed on Adventure riders, and a tag was claimed on NER. I set the new NER tag to this..
Now if your an expert tagger you will notice no leaves in the trees of my new tag photo. Well the reason is this, on NER we allow file photos to be used as the new tag only. We do this for several reasons, one being if you are out riding and you come across something really cool that you thing would make a good tag then you can take your photo and store it for when you are playing. Second is you can place the tag in a different location of the state, allowing other people that may not have the time or want to ride all the way across a state to play. Sometimes I use this, like the photo above, but most of the time I use a photo from the same day of the tag ride.
Thursday Im at work by 9am, with 3 tags under my belt. On 2 of my 4 bikes. I end up having a great day of work on this day which leaves Friday open for more exploring. In talking with my buddy Goser (some of you know him as phil) we planned on hooking up in the am for breakfast somewhere.
I only had a few things to do during the day so I figured if I was done riding by Noon, then I would still have time to work, and finish early to boot. Later that night a RTE (ride to eat) was scheduled in Sterling MA at Sterling Ice Cream bar.
Friday morning came and Phil had some delay so we didnt end up getting together, I was left to explore on my own. The Multistrada.net message forum has a theme tag folder that I started. The current theme was a covered bridge. I had some ideas on where to find one. But first I needed to fuel up. A stop in Clinton at Lou's Diner was in order.
Not sure if VB has been here before, I was only one time, back about 10 years ago. I think things got off to a bad start when I asked the cook if his Hash was home made. He response was "nope from a can, you people dont like my F-ing homemade hash!" I was taken back by the F bomb in the answer, only to hear hear many of them during my stay here.
A small but clean diner
with okay food, but the cooks attitude was not very friendly. A really big turn off for the start of the day.
From here I stopped to add to my collection of town hall photo's (separate trip report Im working on) then headed into the town I grew up in, Lancaster MA. Lancaster historical commission does a great job of documenting the history of this town, one of the oldest in MA. Here are a few of their signs
On my way up Lunenburg road I noticed a new sign at the haunted bridge. I decided to park and walk to the bridge so see how much things have changed since the last time I was here. I use to bring Victoria and Caroline when they were little to this spot. I think Victoria was the first to give it the name "haunted bridge" and its stuck ever since.
Little over grown, but still a small path leads to the bridge
Huge pile of phoo
and finally down by the river.
just up the road was this historical marker
Painted by a young OSJ back in the 70's. Yes my first love was a young girl named Heidi, Heidi Scheugenpflug was here real name, and she was my first kiss way back in 3rd grade! Maybe the town has left this memorial to young love stay for so long because they felt bad that I spelled her name wrong! Can you imagine if I tried spelling her last name! This spot has been used as a tag before and was on my very 1st OSJ New England Treasure hunt.
Back to riding...
Next town north is Shirley, the town hall is in the old historic center.
Next town north is Shirley, the town hall is in the old historic center.
and just around the corner is this place..
Why here? Well out back of this restaurant they have one of these..
My 4th tag!
After my photo I worked my way back home thru lancaster, Sterling and finally West Boylston. Now you may have noticed (or not) the extra bags I have on the multi in the photo's above. These are the tank saddle bags that came with the KLR that I bought on Easter. I thought they might work for my trip I have planned with Michelle later this month. But I didnt like the way they mounted on the duck
No really good way to secure them. Then I thought, hey they might fit on the back if I put them here...
As you can see they dont interfere with the saddle bags, top case or even when Michelle will be sitting on the seat. I quickly bungied them on and used today as a test run with them. They never moved, and from what I could tell were not bothered by the exhaust system. They should add much needed cargo space for our up coming trip south.
I was done riding and placed my tags by noon. I now had a few hrs of work then a promised trip to Best Buy with Grace for some games. After all that was done Michelle was able to get out of work just a bit early and we headed off the the RTE. However Lizzy really wanted to go for her first official road ride. She liked the KLR because her feet touched the footpegs. Something I always felt was the best way to decided if kids should be able to ride on the back. Cant reach, no ride. Michelle loaded up Grace in the convertible and Lizzy joined me on Kawi
And it just so happened while I was out tagging today..someone else was as well. TheWarrior...AKA Mike from Leominster snagged my Mountain Barn tag during the day....(his photo)
And for the second time this week Phil got bruced!
Bruced twice in the same week.
Young Mike placed the new tag here
Pretty easy find for a guy from the leominster area! Thank Mike!
So after dinner with friend at Sterling Ice Cream bar ( stole the photo's from LN,RN, thanks Ellen! : )
Gracie and I mounted the KLR and set off after the 5th and final tag of the week.
Michelle followed us in the top down!
So 3 days, 3 bikes and 5 tags. Not a whole bunch of miles on any of them. But still one of the most fun times Ive had on motorcycles since I can remember. Gracie summed it up best when we got home Friday night..." that was AWESOME" was the first words out of her mouth when I pulled her helmet off.
Yes it was Grace, yes it was!