Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by ABee, Jun 6, 2013.
How good is your waterproofing?
Hey, My name is Scott, I'm from Eureka, I remember Fred Villipoto's shop in Eureka, I had a friend whos brother raced a Husky sponsored by Fred, very cool that this bike used to be his, I was a year or two younger than Danny (Ryans Dad) and see a lot of Dannys riding style in Ryan, you are doing a great job so far, looking forward to more.
Great , I love small bike RRs . So far enjoying your RR and pics .
Congratulations on the start of your TAT adventure! What your doing is one of the coolest things I have ever seen! Your keeping the Hodaka spirit alive and keeping the adventure real.
Be safe, I look forward to more!
Epic,Epic,Epic What a great undertaking. Started on an Ace 90 many years ago. Great bikes. The saying was Hodaka's have 3 inches of travel in the shocks & 4 inches of travel in the seat You will never forget this ride. The best of luck the rest of the way.
ABee is the same guy who once drove a Cessna 152 from North Georgia to SoCal. And back. Thus, he has a history of this sort of insanity, although the airplane was a little faster than the Toad...but not much.
The Toad in it's natural habitat, a Mississippi swamp.
After a late arrival in Adamsville, we did not have the energy to look for an RV park or campground. The parking lot at Walmart was handy, so we decided to crash there. Like in many small towns, the kids considered the Walmart parking lot to be a great gathering place. It was fun to watch them scatter when police patrols arrived about every 30 minutes, only to return moments after the patrol car left. They did not bother us, fellow squatters that we were. In the morning I changed the tranny oil in the Toad after the first 600 miles. The Bel-Ray gear oil started life colored red, but as the new clutch plates wore in, the oil had turned to black. Riders of small bore bikes know that our left toes (shift lever) and left fingers (clutch lever) are VERY active participants in any ride. As I serviced the bike in the parking lot, I soon had an audience. Two fellows in particular seemed to be excited to see a living Hodaka again. Wow, a Hodaka. I have not seen one of those for about thirty years! And now I am looking at three! and I used to have an Ace 100, my brother had a Super Rat! This was a reoccurring theme. People connect to these bikes because it brings back so many memories. The Toad may be old, slow and homely, but it will be the bike people will gravitate to and want to talk about. It has certainly been a great ice-breaker on this trip for me. I have met several interesting people simply because they wanted to look at and ask questions about the bike.
The ride today from Adamsville, Tennessee to Sardis, Mississippi was enjoyable. I was treated to many more dirt roads than in the previous days. It had rained recently along my route, so there was almost no dust. I saw little traffic on these back roads, only the occasional rural postman, farmer in a pickup, or UPS delivery truck. Oh, and lots of wildlife. Wild turkeys, hawks, raccoons, armadillos, and of course, deer were everywhere. Even though I am on a slow bike, I have nearly nailed Bambi a couple of times on this trip already. Many times you can see the deer on the side of the road. Other times, they will just sprint out in front of you unseen from the brush. Scary stuff.
Sardis, Mississippi is a farming community that has seen more prosperous days. We ate catfish in a restaurant downtown. The people were very gracious and friendly, like most people we have met on the trip. We camped at John Kyle State Park at Lake Sardis. The people camped next to us sent their kids over to invite us to dinner. They had caught a bunch of catfish and had plenty to spare. Bad timing on our part, having eaten earlier, but I just love that Southern hospitality.
Good ole red Mississippi dirt, now this is more like it!
Leaving Adamsville, TN
Fine cuisine, Sardis, MS
The Swamp Cow Hunting Club, near Chalybeate, MS
Near Potts Camp, MS
RideDualSport, AZ Tom, Ks-Rydr, Gunslinger, Bob, huzar, Ferguson Valley- thanks for the comments.
JackB1- I am looking forward to taking you up on that!
MUS- Facebook? What's that?
socalhodaka- Cool, you have one of the Toad's siblings!
prsdrat- That will become my new slogan when I arrive at my destination at the end of the day: "Hodaka esta aqui!"
TomW- Careful, our I will tell everyone how you land a Cessna!
In case anyone is interested, you can track my trip progress on my Spot device page at the address below. You will note that I am a couple of days behind in my ride report posts, but hope to get caught up soon. I am currently in Ozark, AR, about to cross into OK.
Hey, we walked away. Thanks for noticing the 2,000 FPM rate of descent.
When Kudzu Attacks! Near Rudyard, MS
Sardis, Mississippi to Beebe, Arkansas.
I was looking forward to the sight of the Mississippi River today as it would symbolize the gateway to the West on this trip. The roads to the west of Sardis soon had me back on the dirt, and the Toad and I soon found ourselves winding through fields taken over by Kudzu, an invasive vine that was once imported from Asia in an effort to control erosion and supposedly provide feed for cattle. As it turned out, the cattle did not like Kudzu all that much. The vine thrived in the hot and humid climate of the south, and you will see sections of the southern landscape that are completely overrun with the stuff. Abandoned houses, barns, and anything else stationary in its path gets covered up. When I first moved to the South from California, I saw Kudzu for the first time along roads in Mississippi. I said to my wife Donna, a Southerner, How nice, they plant ivy here to landscape the roads. She just looked at me and rolled her eyes.
The bridge crossing the Mississippi River at Helena, is narrow, so there is no way to stop on it for photographs. Once across on the Arkansas side, I wound down to the waters edge at a loading dock for barges for a few pictures. Before too long I was paid a visit by security. I was informed by these men that the whole dock area was closed to the public and that taking pictures of a secure facility was not allowed. I did not know that a dock for gravel barges could be so strategically important, but now I do.
After a quick visit to the Arkansas Visitors Center, I was back on the TAT. One of the first things you notice about the dirt roads in Southeastern Arkansas is that they really like to lay the gravel on thick. Either that, or it was just my luck that the gravel trucks had just been by for the season. Anyway, the course gravel can be four to six inches deep in many places, causing moments of excitement, especially in turns. The Toad did not have enough power to blast through this deep stuff. Instead, we just did our best wallowing along searching for the shallowest covering.
Just outside of Marvell, the home of musician Levon Helm (The Band), I noticed a sign that read TAT Sign-In and Rest Stop, ¾ mile. Sure enough, sitting outside of an old country store that was now closed was Percy Kale, a retired gentleman who now enjoys spending time welcoming riders on the TAT to Arkansas. Percy has a logbook that he keeps of riders who stop to visit. It is interesting reading all the comments that riders have left in the log about their ride experiences or goals. Percy also enjoys showing people around the old country store, which he has turned into a kind of museum. Toys, glassware, tools, farm equipment, antique household goods and photographs are just a few of the items in the building. If you do the ride, stop and spend some time with Percy, it will warm your heart.
Outside of Marvell, on the way to Beebe, you will pass through the White River National Wildlife Reserve and some smaller state parks. You will enjoy riding through the scenic forest roads, but again, deep gravel was an issue here as well.
When I finally arrived in Beebe, I had traveled 221 miles for the day. This makes 1,062 miles (Toad odometer) traveled to date. No real mechanical issues so far. I broke a kickstarter spring (not a problem-Hodakas have external springs) and the oil pump is still not delivering enough oil to the motor. I have been compensating by mixing additional oil in the gas. Other than these things, it is still buzzing along like it was 1978.
Riding the Levees near Ark Bayou, MS
Mississippi River Barge Port, Helena, AR
Wecome to Arkansas
Percy Kale and the TAT Arkansas Rest Stop
The deep gravel roads of southern Arkansas
Read the sign. Near Roe, AR
Fred sold me three bikes, a 1977 250 Bultaco Pursang, a CZ 175 Sport streetbike and the Toad. I did not not know Danny that well, only from the shop and at the track. Fred had him on a 1977 125 Bultaco Pursang that was heavy and slow compared to the Japanese stuff at the time, but he would keep up with anyone out there. I raced against Danny at French's Camp, near Garberville. We also raced at Ruth Lake and the Eureka Fairgrounds locally. Danny, along with Lance Burgess from Phillipsville, were among the fastest riders in Humboldt County at the time. I am not surprised that Fred helped your friend on a Husky. (Although he never sold them, Honda of Arcata did.) Fred helped out many up and coming riders at that time, regarless of what they rode. He would work on anything and everything.
ABee * Just wanted to let you know that I love this ride report and your bikes
Enjoying your ride report. Have rode Tenn. TAT twice , seeing lots of famaliar places also met Jonathan. Thanks
I grew up in Conway, AR, not far from where you are now. I will be watching your RR to see some of the old homeland down that way. Cool bike and very cool RR!