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Old 11-02-2012, 11:48 PM   #361
Cubdriver
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Hell of a ride report. You put most of us old boys to shame with your engine rebuild. Nice job. Ride safely. KLR is a great bike.
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:29 PM   #362
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Hell of a ride report. You put most of us old boys to shame with your engine rebuild. Nice job. Ride safely. KLR is a great bike.
Thanks Cubdriver! Spirit is a great bike!
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Old 11-03-2012, 09:10 PM   #363
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Left McD in search of a campground way South.


I am digging the Spanish moss!

The map showed me some pretty cool green forest areas, so I figured there should be no problem finding a forest Service campsite. Yeah.... not really! Went down a long dirt road, sandy here and there, but no signs of camp grounds. If it hadn't been for the sand I would have tried my luck down one of the narrow side roads that seemed to lead deeper into the forest, but my courage failed me.
I ended up turning around and found a forest service station that seemed deserted. I parked Spirit and went in search of a ranger. I bumped into a gal on her way home, who told me about Silver Lake camp site. She even had me follow her part way to lead me in the right direction.
I found it right before sunset, just in time seeing as here in Florida, as well as in Georgia and South Carolina, they seem to close the park entrance! What's up with all the lock down???

I picked a spot and made camp, but not before I ended up dropping Spirit halfway when squeezing between the posts, because I had miscalculated the amount of room my cases needed. Yikes! I could not for the life of me get her up, because I ha to push her backward at the same time to clear the post. I was way too tired so I asked my camp neighbor for some help. 4 hands are better than 2!


I slept like a baby that night, no worrying about gators!


It's such a nice sight to see when opening my tent in the morning

I took my time in the morning, trying not to live by the clock. Hmph! That's easier said than done!!!
I took advantage of the shower and was thoroughly enjoying the hot water when I realized that I was not alone in the shower stall.


Awwwww!!!!

Left around noon and headed to the coast.
The scenery there was pretty awesome but some of the pics didn't take. Turns out my memory card was loose. :(
Did take a few once I got to the coast.








If you look carefully, to the center tree, there is a bald eagle perched on top!



After all that nice scenery I was forced to take Hwy 19 down for a stretch.


Ugh!! Yuck, what an awful road! Stop go, stop go. Spirit didn't like it either, who in there right mind would want to live there?????
After what seemed like forever that alternate 19 turn showed up.
Much better!!


Could have sworn I space jumped to Hollywood!




Some awesome bridges to go over!




Famous hotel, I'll get back with the name later....


See that bridge in the distance?




Absolutely mind blowing!!!


It's like I landed in Turkey...

I got to Sarasota where a friend of my friend Geoffrey lived. She had a guest house where I would be allowed to stay......
Knocked on the door, and a guy opened it. "Hello? May I help you?" I introduced myself and said I was a friend of Geoffrey's, assuming he knew I was coming and that G had called and talked to him. Nope, no such luck.
On top of that, the guest cottage was no longer a guest cottage but a rented out cottage. LOL.
So here I was in the middle of Sarasota at sunset with no place to stay. Hmmm, think I've been there before.....
So I asked Tom (the guy's name) where the nearest camp group was. Thank fully not too far.
As I got there it turns out they were filled up, and also closing their gates. Yikes! I had forgotten about curfew time.
By now it was pretty darn dark and found myself wondering what the heck to do now. Camping out in suburbia is not really an option. I texted my friend Lorrie and asked her if she was ready for me to drop by tonight. I figured I could hang in there for 2 more hours. Turns out it was only an hour and 15 minutes away, and she was ready for me.
I put the pedal to the metal and made it there without falling asleep.
It was great seeing Lorrie again! She made us a great supper, and after a small glass of white wine I was ready to hit the sack.
Of course then I decided to do my RR.
Well, now I'm going to bed! Goodnight you'all!
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Old 11-04-2012, 05:32 AM   #364
Motomedic
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Hmmm, it's a small world, and we seem to be on convergent paths, even if the timing's a bit off.

I spent three nights on Jekyll Island, waiting for Sandy to go by. I'm currently just south of Sarasota (Nokomis) and heading north after a delicious McD's brekky.

Are you heading for the Keys?

(Great job with your bike, too! )
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Old 11-04-2012, 05:48 AM   #365
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Hmmm, it's a small world, and we seem to be on convergent paths, even if the timing's a bit off.

Are you heading for the Keys?
(Great job with your bike, too! )
Yep heading for the keys at some point.
I am running out of dough, and need to go and find a temp job for a while so I can head west via the southern states at some point.
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Old 11-04-2012, 06:05 AM   #366
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Yep heading for the keys at some point.
I am running out of dough, and need to go and find a temp job for a while so I can head west via the southern states at some point.
Unless you have a host lined up in the keys it can be very, very expensive down there.
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Old 11-04-2012, 07:19 AM   #367
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I ended up staying in the Long Pine Key campground in the Everglades for a few days. I don't want to advocate anything like staying in a campground without paying () but there wasn't a whole lot of patrolling going on by the rangers....

I stayed 4 days and never got hassled. My Access pass gets me thru the gate fees and the camp ground was 1/2 full during the week. Flamingo was less crowded, more bugs and no shade. Camping in the Keys was out of the question. I looked for "free" camping, couldn't find any, and the "official" campgrounds wanted $50 for a tent site!
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:44 PM   #368
terryckdbf
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South Florida, cold weather setting in, tourist season, Holiday season, there are worse places to be while looking for a job.
If you had a place to room it would be ideal to sock a couple of bucks away.

Wishing you well.

Terry
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:36 PM   #369
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Spirit and I are safely tucked away in my girlfriends garage near Naples.
We've been cruising the town and surrounding areas and done a lot of walking.
I'm looking around for a job so I can fund my further journey later on in the year.
Hopefully I'll get to ride down to the keys before starting work.
Just a few pics of the area for now.








Two pelicans on the sandbar.

Wish me luck in finding a job!
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Old 11-05-2012, 04:45 PM   #370
Ratman
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Remarkable NomadGal

I just finished your RR up to date. Great report, and thanks for taking the time to do it. I don't know many folks that could have accomplished the engine work you did. Way Cool.

I've a sister about 20 miles north of Gainsville near High Springs. She has a 10 acre yard, and could help you out with camping and maybe other general Help.

If you need an introduction...let me know.
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Old 11-07-2012, 10:03 AM   #371
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I just finished your RR up to date. Great report, and thanks for taking the time to do it. I don't know many folks that could have accomplished the engine work you did. Way Cool.

I've a sister about 20 miles north of Gainsville near High Springs. She has a 10 acre yard, and could help you out with camping and maybe other general Help.

If you need an introduction...let me know.
Thanks Ratman! Once I get back on the road I might!
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Old 11-07-2012, 10:07 AM   #372
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Right now things are rapidly moving into a different direction.....
I actually got a seasonal job already at a small clothing store that sells True Religion jeans and such. This is the first time I got a job that fast because I speak several languages. It seems that about about 90% of they clientele is German, and I speak it fluently. The gig is for a month or so, and hopefully I can get a few other things to do on the side.
Part of me wanted to find a place to stay in the Keys and work on boats. But who am I kidding? I get horribly seasick if the boat isn't going super fast!
Meanwhile I am safely esconded in my friend's luxurious garage


Get to sleep right next to Spirit, just the way I like it!

Tomorrow however I am heading to the Keys for a few days seeing as the job doesn't start till next week.
I'm excited, supposedly there are 41 bridges to go over, Yay!!!
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Old 11-07-2012, 06:01 PM   #373
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Tent space in the Keys??

Thought I'd just post the question here:
Does anyone on this forum live near the Florida Keys?
The closest tent space is North of Miami, smack dab in the middle of noisy civilization. Hmmm, nope, no way!
Let me know if you know anyone with a yard I could crash tomorrow eve.
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Old 11-09-2012, 06:33 AM   #374
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Made it to Key West!
Now I can at least say I've been there, would I go here ever again? Hmmmmm, nope very unlikely!
The problem with imagining things is that in my imagination things are almost always better.
I had envisioned long beautiful stretches of land and water, beautiful bridges to cross over, the sun stinging on my back, and the fresh ocean air in my lungs.
The reality was a tad different.....
Long stretches of roads through towns filled to the brim with one store after another, so much consumerism :( , some beautiful bridges, sun in my have and wind howling around my helmet, and the smell of diesel exhaust in my lungs. Yep, a sad reality.
Anyway, let me backtrack to the beginning.
Left my friend Lorrie's house late, around 11 because I decided to check my oil filter again. Yikes, still metal slivers albeit not that many anymore.
It took me an hour just to get through Naples on Hwy 41. Traffic light after traffic light, neither Spirit nor I cared for it much.
Finally I got to the open road! I smiled again and relaxed. This is what riding is all about, not the congested and polluted town and city rides.





Stopped at a visitor center which one guy I met there called Alligator Alley


Not only where there alligators, there were birds and fish too.


These fish must not realize that they will be dinner at one point or another. Either that or they seem at ease with the knowledge.




Yep, pretty gnarly looking, and definitely not something I would want crawling outside my tent......

Took a couple of okay shots while riding over the bridges, it was windy so I mostly held on to the handlebars





The bridge on the right has a couple of sections missing. I was told by Omar (my unexpected host) that this is where they filmed True Lies with Arnold and

I got to Big Pine around sunset and couldn't find the camp ground. I stopped at a house where two Harley guys were working on a bike, and asked where the campground was. The guy pointed to his yard, and said that if I wanted I could pitch my tent up right there. Wow! That was very sweet. his name was Omar and his friend was Keith. They were both recovering alcoholics and drug addicts, and proud that they had been straight for years. I pitched my tent while they worked and afterward sat with them for a while and talked about the program they were on.
It sounds really cool. They even meditate and get in touch with who they really are.
We talked about books and such.
Omar had even read a few books I had read too, like "The Way of the Peaceful Warrior", Richard Bach's Illusions and Jonathan Livingston Seagull. I told him to read Eckhart Tolle's New Earth and the Power of Now. Wonder if he will like it.



I slept great even though I woke up a few times.
The good thing about going to bed at 8 pm is that you wake up at 6.
This is the first time I hit the road at 8 AM! Wow! The road was still quiet, and the last stretch to Key West was way nicer.




Some other early birds






A McD with a nice view.
I had my oatmeal and coffee, and am heading to the southern most point.
Afterward back North and into the Everglades
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Old 11-09-2012, 07:35 AM   #375
ben2go
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Might wanna try a hammock and hang high to get up away from the gators.That's kind a scary.
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