Brian&Jill2013

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by 2ongs, Apr 22, 2013.

  1. Steev1705

    Steev1705 n00b

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    Looks like you guys are off to a great start, keep the pics coming, its the only chance I get to take a road trip right now! :clap
    #21
  2. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    the title of this post will be "Bizarre". as we said last when we got into Amarillo last night it was in the 90's, this morning it was in the 40's with serious wind, 35-40 mph gusts and a chance of rain and even snow later. the wind was blowing so hard, the sky was gray, kinda eerie. we decided to give it a try because we knew we were going to get off the I 40 (route 66) and take back roads into OK. we had to get on the I40 for a while before we could get on the 207 south. the wind was kinda hairy, the aches of the last week of riding intensified due to my white knuckling the hand grips, fighting the cross winds.

    but before we started heading toward OK, I wanted to see the Cadillac Ranch.

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    Once we saw that, headed out of Amarillo, turned of the I-40 onto the 207 south. as soon as we turned south the wind wasn't a factor anymore and it was a really nice ride. Just as we started south, we came upon the "VW Ranch", just like the Cadillac Ranch, except with VW's.

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    we found this ride in our scenic roads book. the scenery started in Claude and went all the way to Silverton. Started as farm land and then transitioned down into red rock cyn. lots of "curvy Motorcycle roads". as long as we were going south it was great.

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    along the way we saw some wild life, a few deer, one of them was even alive, two wild Turkeys and a fox.
    the weather sucked pretty much all day but still had a good ride. stopped in Silverton for lunch at the Malt Shop, been there since "1955", and pretty much the only place we could find.

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    we stopped in Altus OK for the night. it was 77 degrees when we pulled in at the Best Western, by the time we went to dinner in felt like it might snow, there's actually that possibility tomorrow. we'll see how the weather is in the morning.
    #22
  3. dirtdiver

    dirtdiver Long timer

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    Gosh that looks like fun. Great RR!

    DD
    #23
  4. Rutabaga

    Rutabaga Been here awhile

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    What a great trip you are making; relaxed attitude, easy pace. The smiles, story and pictures reflect the effort.
    #24
  5. 43stanley

    43stanley Stanley461

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    Sorry we missed you in Prescott. The trip looks fantastic. Keep posting the great stories and continue having a great adventure.
    #25
  6. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    yesterday was kind of weird, forgot to mention one thing that added to the day. when we stopped in Silverton for gas/ Lunch, while we were at the gas station, the wind was really blowing. I opened the pannier (saddle bag) and all of the sudden there was a white cloud all around us. Jill was temp. blinded and my black riding suit turned white, looked like the pillsbury doughboy. The seat on the bike was white for a few seconds and the side of the bike was too. Turns out the lid on our "anti monkey butt" powder had come off and when I opened the saddle bag, the wind created a powder cloud that enveloped the entire area around us. Too bad it wasn't on video, would have been funny.

    we got a late start today because we were waiting for the weather to improve a little. It was really cold and the wind was still blowing like mad, but the rain had pretty much passed through. so we got on the 62 east out of Altus OK, and headed toward Lawton OK. between the two cities there was a scenic ride we wanted to ride. right away, we realized it was going to be another rough day due to the wind, and cold. the light rain wasn't really a factor. we took the 54 N to the 49E into the Wichita Mountains, wildlife refuge. really beautiful, and great riding roads. the only real wildlife we saw was a Coyote "sleeping" on the side of the road, and a Buffalo. he apparently was camera shy, because as soon as I stopped to take his picture he ran off. we also saw a Prairie dog village, but they are smarter than us, because they knew it was too cold to stick their heads out of their holes.

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    once we got out of the mountains and back on the 62E, the wind seemed to have picked up if that was possible, so we were riding at about a 45 degree angle. After twice being blown off the road onto the shoulder and pretty close to the ditch, we decided to find a place to hunker down. only did about 70 miles today due to weather, but once again some really good scenery. should have taken more pictures of the Wichita mountains because it was so beautiful, but we were freezing and afraid the wind was going to knock us over.

    Stopped in Lawton OK, had some BBQ, and found a hotel, hope for better weather for tomorrow. watching the weather channel in the hotel and see there is crazy weather everywhere right now. time to plan tomorrows route and find dinner.
    #26
  7. 43stanley

    43stanley Stanley461

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    Good stuff. I would have loved to see the look on your face when you were covered in white powder.
    #27
  8. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    started the day in Lawton OK, the weather improved quite a bit, still windy but nothing like yesterday, and the sun was actually out most of the day. temps were in the high 30's early in the morning, so we took our time drinking coffee and waited until about 9:30am to get on the road. mid 40's was much more civilized. we took 7E to Davis, two lane highway through farms, some small ranches, and lots of small towns. it's not like traveling cross country on the freeways, when you're taking the back roads there's always towns or speed zones that slow you down so original estimates are off. got on the 1E the Chicksaw turnpike, turns into just the 1E to ADA OK, and had lunch there.

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    beautiful country side, got on the 270 E to the 271 south, and finally arrived at the start of the Talimena scenic ride, in Talihina, where we ended up stopping for the night because we were running out of daylight. It's right on the border of Arkansas, and on the weekends it is apparently a popular bike ride, according to the locals. a bunch of harley's pulled into our little hotel and were polishing their bikes getting ready for tomorrows ride.

    the town is very small but has a lot of personality. We ate dinner at "Pam's Hateful Hussy Diner". once inside it is very apparent the owner has serious issues with her husband and men in general (all in fun, I think).

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    a few things became apparent after a few days of riding through small town America; many of the store fronts are vacant in all of the small towns, everything is green, compared to the left coast, there are millions of cows, and hunting clothing is everyday wear in the Heartland, and I want a good cowboy hat (probably never wear it, but want one anyway).
    #28
  9. 43stanley

    43stanley Stanley461

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    The ride looks beautiful. I wonder if there are times you wish you were sitting in a warm comfy car. This part of the country looks empty of humans.
    #29
  10. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    Last few pictures are of the cafe and town we stayed in our last night in OK before crossing into AR.

    after having breakfast at Pam's cafe, same place we had dinner the night before we got on the 1 east into the Ouachita Nat'l forrest. I think I've used up most of the adjectives on previous post to describe the scenery, so I'll try to come up with a new one. today's ride through the Nat'l forrest was "Fabulous"! mountain roads, with some long sweeping curves, switchbacks, and snake curves. all cut right through 80 miles of forrest. it was cloudy and cool about 46ish, but the sights were still great.

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    In the first week of our trip, we've had hot weather, cold, windy, real fu#*Ing windy, and today we got rain and cold. I guess that's part of the "Adventure". when we were coming out of the mountains some of those downhill S curves aren't as much fun when they are wet. I guess some of the adventure is also when you miss a turn off and have to make a big loop, 20+ miles out of your way too, not that that happened or anything.

    After coming out of the mountains we made our way to Hot Springs via the 270, that was a scenic drive in itself. stopped and had lunch there. Couldn't throw a rock without hitting a Harley, there was a bike rally there this weekend, felt like a "foreigner" on a BMW. then took an unplanned ride around Little Rock, finally got going in the right direction and ended the day in Pine Bluff AR. Tomorrow, we will head south to Monroe LA and visit with an old buddy, Bill Thelkeld (for those that know him).
    #30
  11. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    comimg out of the mountains,

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    Crossing into Ar.

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    from Hot spring AR, we took th 270 into Pine Bluff, and stayed the night there. in the morning we got on the 425, a two lane road through very scenic southern AR, and into LA. once we crossed into LA the weather changed for the better pretty quickly. actually saw some sun and the wind pretty much disappeared.

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    We took the 165 into Monroe LA and after cruising a very nice neghborhood, trying to find Bill's house (GPS din't show it) we finally found it. did some catching up on old times and swapping kid stories etc. then Bill and Susie and their beautiful daughter Jenny took us on a sight seeing tour of the Black Bayou.

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    Jill eating crawfish at a restaurant on the Black Bayou.

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    Sunset on the Bayou.

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    we had a great time visiting with Bill and Susie. they were kind enough to put us up in there house for the night. in the morning they had to get to work and we got on the road, well at least down the street to the Waffle House. Bill and Susie have listed their house and are planning a move back to CA. hope to see them soon.

    after some great waffles, got on the 165 to Alexandria, then the 49 into Lafayette and had some more fantastic cajun food at Prejean's (Bill's recommendation), 11ft. gator in the entryway means good cajun.

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    the "love bugs" were out in force "conected to each other", making a double splat on the wind shield and face mask. sounded like small gravel bouncing off my helmet, and it went on for miles.
    After lunch we got on the 31S through small towns and neighborhoods. some of the small towns aren't so good about posting signs, so you really have to keep your eys open. the temp went up to the mid 70's, actually, had to pull over and lose my liner, nice for a change.

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    we finally worked our way to Houma via the 182 and the 90. good ride, but sometimes the back roads can make for a long day without making many miles. we did about 340 miles today, but again saw good scenery.

    Again, we found a good cajun place to have dinner, appetizer of Boudin (cajun sausage), red fish with lemon sauce and almonds, and Jill had red fish dish that we can't spell (french), but it had a red sauce and chunks of fish, and was really good. (Boudreaux and tibaodaux cajun cooking).

    memorable things from the last two days of riding: smell of fresh cut grass, the medians and shoulders are all grass and they seem to be mowing all the time. large vines hanging from tress, bugs, green. incredible estates and incredible shacks, sometimes right next to each other. poverty and wealth are so close it's kind of weird, road kill, the stars and bars still flying in the south, saw two today. old cars/ trucks in front yards. really good food !
    #31
  12. rmw

    rmw Been here awhile

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    Glad the weather is getting better for you. Great pictures and RR. you have inspired us, we cannot get away for two months but are going to take five days over memorial weekend and see some of Idaho and Montana. I am going to stage the bike in Spokane a week before so we get a head start.

    Fantastic ride, keep it comming!
    #32
  13. rodr

    rodr Been here awhile

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    Hey I remember Pam's, had a burger there when passing through a couple of summers ago. Really enjoyed the Talimena Scenic Drive too.

    Nice report, thanks for sharing!
    #33
  14. tm2rd

    tm2rd Adventurer

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    Those crawfish look huge! Bet they were good. Now I'm jealous. Glad your keeping up the ride report!
    #34
  15. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    stayed in Gray LA, just outside Houma last night. got on the road this morning, 24N to the 20N to the 1 north. highly recommend the 1 all the way into Baton Rouge. it's back road one lane the entire way, small towns, but mostly southern style houses with real large yards and trees, some mansions and plantations. lots of French colonial style, many with pillars and front porches, kept saying "wow look at that one" to each other. went on for about 80 miles, really enjoyed that part of the ride today. one thing that really stood out was even in very small towns there were huge churches, some within just a mile or two of each other, I know it's the Bible Belt, but gotta wonder who paid for those things, they are beautiful.

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    we took the 1 into west Baton Rouge, and got caught up in some heavy traffic, and of course went the wrong way for about five miles, so got to enjoy the traffic twice. a guy on a v-max pulled up to us and started a conversation at stop lights. he saw the AK stickers on our bike and he was from AK, he wanted to help us plan our ride, all in traffic at stop lights, one of the weird things that happens on these rides. he was nice and meant well, but after looking at the map if we would have listened to him we wouldn't have got were we wanted to go (Bless his heart). Our destination for today was the Natchez Trace Parkway. we took the 61 N into Mississippi and into Natchez. the pky. goes all the way through MS and into TN. we did about 80 miles of it today and stopped in Vicksburg. it was just what I'd hoped for, one lane cut through a forrest, absolutely beautiful!

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    at points the trees form a canopy over your head and almost block out the sun, it's really nice and would even make a hot summer ride enjoyable. we got off the PKY to end the day in Vicksburg. we'll pick it up again tomorrow. our battery on the camera is dying, so we'll also search for one of those tomorrow.

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    getting ready to post on this site tonight made me think how times have changed on rides, it's now pretty high tech. even though I'm not, all these cords are part of what we took on this trip, to charge the phone, the camera, the Ipad, the Ipad keyboard, to transfer pict's to the Ipad, and the kindle.

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    that made me think of some of the other stuff that we use, liken the GPS.

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    about six months before this ride I invested in a Russell all day seat, it was worth every penny.

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    some other highlights of the day; great smells, not sure what the plant is but it smells like jasmine and it's all over the place, especially on the Natchez Trace, magnificent estates, Bayous, fried catfish, the lack of foreign cars, not that they're not here because they are but just not many compared to So Cal. went all day before I saw a Mercedes, and that was only one all day. American trucks rule in the south. same with the bikes, Harley's everywhere, it's unusual to see another foreign bike. tonight in Mississippi, will probably end up in AL tomorrow.
    #35
  16. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    Yorba Linda, SO CAL
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    forgot to show this yesterday. Note the smudge on the left side of the picture. We noticed similar smudges on the pictures yesterday--turns out it was a bug on the lens. Those were some serious bug swarms through Louisiana!

    started the day in Vicksburg Mississippi. our plan was changed slightly because we spent more time at the "Vicksburg Military Park" than we anticipated, because it was Awesome (new ADJ.) if you're in the area of Vicksburg, recommend you see it.

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    sorry for so many pict's, but that was for the history buff's. in the early 1900's soldiers from the Civil war came back to the battlefield and helped document it, so it is the best documented battle from the civil war. the area has a real hallowed feel, quiet, serene and majestic.

    Ok, after the tour, we got back on the Natchez Trace PKY. heading north. Again this is a fantastic ride, and highly recommend it. yesterday, I remember saying if only it had a stream it would be perfect. As if on command a stream appeared, then a river. today we did a little under 100 miles, bringing our total on the PKY. to somewhere just under 200 miles. it goes for another 200 in Mississippi alone and then into TN. today the highlight was the huge lake, swamp and the near perfect road lined by trees.

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    while standing on the boardwalk in the middle of the Cypress swamp, we heard a big splash. I happened to be looking right in the area and saw a big splash. at first we thought it was a branch that broke from high up and fell in the water, but then I saw the branch moving. it was about three feet of snake. it swam right toward us and pulled itself up on the base of the tree. I'm not an expert on snakes but if I had to guess I'd say it was a "python," if you look close you can see it in the next picture, at the base of the tree. how often do you see a snake fall out of the sky?

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    after we left the swamp, we headed north to the 16E and took that to Philadelphia MS. then the 19S to Meridian. the scenery on both the 16 and 19 was more sparse housing and occasional shacks, small town mixed with medium sized towns and even a college town, Clinton has Miss Sate. there. Had lunch at a deli and it was great. if you stop in Meridan, highly recommend "Dickie's BBQ pit" it's in a shopping center but it's some really good BBQ. Meridian is on the border with AL. we'll cross over tomorrow, hope to drive past an old boyhood home in FT. Rucker, AL.
    #36
  17. 2ongs

    2ongs Adventurer

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    "End of the road less traveled" for now. we had a freaky accident that has changed our plans dramatically. yesterday, when we were filling up at a gas station near Monroeville AL. the bike was was on "uneven" cement at the pumps , I turned my back to start the pump and the bike fell over, Jill was standing next to it and first tried to stop it and then tried to get out of the way, I turned in time to see it fall over. Jill stumbled and fell down, breaking her wrist. Once we got he bike back up iced her wrist and made a sling out of a pair of pants, we got back on the bike and drove into Monroeville to the Hospital. Jill had hoped they would be able to set it and cast it and we could contiue with our trip, but it wasn't to be. the wrist is broke in two places and will need surgery. the folks at the hospital were very helpful, even trying to help find us a rental car. After we got the prognosis, we decided the best action was to drive her to the Pensicola airport, about 100 miles away and put her on a plane so she can have surgery and recover at home. I then will ride back. and that is what we did. today I got a rental from the local Ford dealer, the owner Jim Sales was very helpful in getting the car and giving me the "short cut" route to the airport. Jill is in a splint and has pain meds, she was feeling "pretty good" when I dropped her at her terminal.
    the Bike falling was my fault, I should have seen it coming, just didn't. I'm sure I will make it up to her somehow. she was adamant that we will continue our "vacation" one way or the other, probably not on the bike but we will do something else while she still has time off work.

    I did a little patch work on the bike, a few things needed attention after it fell over. After I returned the rental and loaded the bike, I finally got on the road about 2:00pm. made a couple hundered miles before stopping for the night just out side Jackson MS.
    Since my bride isn't here to enjoy the sights, I'll just get on the intersate and bomb my way home, will get an early start tomorrow, and just cruise, hope to make Abilene. will watch the weather, I know around San Antoino they have some nasty weather right now, hopefully it will stay south until I get through.

    the following are probably the last pictures I'll post for this trip, unless there is something really cool and I actually take the picture. some are before the "fall" and some are after. it was a great ride while it lasted, just short of two weeks out of a planned 10 week trip. we both went with the idea that hopefully the "smaller incidents in life" like this one will hold off the really big ones. don't know if that is true, but that's what wer're going with.

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    Warning!!! if you're squeamish you may not want to look at the next pict.

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    after the hospital, to the local hotel and a "fine meal" delivered to the room.

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    duct tape can fix almost anything. should hold....

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    all the gear loaded, and ready to leave from the Ford dealer in Monroeville AL.

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    well folks that's it for this "Adventure", I should be home in a few days and we will plan our next one, hopefully with out hospital visits and plane rides home.
    #37
  18. Steev1705

    Steev1705 n00b

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    Brian,
    I'm so sorry to hear this news, I know how much you guys were looking forward to this trip. Life sometimes has its unfortunate twists and turns but I know you two will make another run at it in the future. Nevertheless, thanks for sharing your adventure, it was fun tagging along.
    -Steve Kea
    #38
  19. rodr

    rodr Been here awhile

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    Aw, so sorry to hear about Jill's injury. I'm sure she will recover just fine.

    Looks like weather in San Antonio is supposed to be nice on Sunday and Monday, so probably you don't need to sweat that. You might try hitting some of Texas Hill Country from there, it's very pretty... see "Reconnection Ride" in my sig (post #31) for more about that.
    #39
  20. achesley

    achesley Old Motorcyclist

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    Great report! Not so good on Jill but it's gonna all be good in the end. On both my R11**GSs, I welded a 3/8" plate to keep it from lean so far over. My stops when loaded down were pretty comical with my 29" Inseam. LOL. Put the side stand down, stand on the left peg and quickly jump to the ground to keep the bike from falling over. Then putting it on the center stand.
    Loving the report and pictures. Thanks for the work of sharing and posting the pictures. Hope it's all good with Jill. :clap:clap:clap
    #40