GS / ST Trippin', Trials and an Evolution !

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by GAS GUY, Mar 28, 2014.

  1. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    Had an interesting lunch this afternoon. Don't know if any of you are into or follow the UFC cage fight game at all, but, Kevin Lee - "The Motown Phenom" - stopped into the shop today. So, a couple of us UFC fans took him to lunch and spent a few hours talking with him and showing him around Ford World Headquarters.

    He is one of the top Lightweight (155) contenders. He just recently fought Tony Ferguson in Vegas for the interim belt - to see who gets a shot at Conor McGregor next. Unfortunately, he fell short on that fight; he had some issues with his weight cut and also entered the fight with a staph infection. He was still winning the fight before a slip up and getting choked out. He is young though. He will hold the belt eventually.

    He is from Detroit. His Aunt cleans cars at our shop. Tomorrow night is a big UFC venue in Detroit at Little Caesar's Arena. He is currently living in Las Vegas, but flew in for the week, doing public relations for the event. So his Aunt shot him a text, prompting him to come over and spend some time with us today. He is a humble and down to earth dude.


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  2. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    On the Southeast Ohio (last of the year) sojourn, Tonya's Country Kitchen was the breakfast stop of choice. When traveling in frequented locations, different restaurants are randomly chosen, if choices exist; I try not to always return to the same spots, unless a specific one is spectacular.

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    Tonya's is right in the historic district on Front Street and across from Jeremiah's Coffee House, making it convenient. It's a roomy diner with middle of the road food. The bacon was sub-par though. Next time I'll search out a new option.

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    The building had some unique looking ceilings. The second morning, a local women was sitting at the counter near me and informed me that this restaurant was a bar back in the day. That is all the information that could be comprehended, despite the fact that she would randomly ramble on indiscernably in a low tone. She was a nice enough lady though. She is standing in the picture with the purse, talking with someone at a table, as she was on her way towards the door. She seemed to know everyone.

    The bathroom mirror was a different touch.

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  3. STinner

    STinner any direction will do

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    Is the moose lodge still across the street Jeff? Last time I was down that street, Tonya's and the tattoo joint were empty store fronts. This was about 5 maybe 6 yrs ago.
  4. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    It seems like there is a Moose Lodge across the street, but I'm not 100%. There is an Odd Fellows and a Fraternal Order of Eagles across the street for sure. Took this picture because of the stone dental tooth architecture. Used to like playing with dental tooth woodwork and trim.

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  5. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    Nankin Mills -

    Can't complain about this December weather. Cold mornings and short days, but, we've been getting some sunny and comfortable afternoons. Decided to get out for awhile today. Going to start by interjecting with some local history for a change - instead of far-off locations.

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    Two grist mills have occupied this site. The first was built between 1835 and 1842; the present was constructed soon after the Civil War period. In 1918 Henry Ford purchased it as part of a plan to develop village mill industries along the Route and other small rivers. Equipped with a turbine generator, Nankin Mills produced engravings, carburetor parts, rivets, and bearings. Ford believed that farmers working in an atmosphere of cleanliness and tranquility would restore a proper balance between the industrialized city and rural communities. Although his experiment intrigued American and European planners, it proved unprofitable. After World War Two, the mills closed. The Wayne County Road Commision acquired Nankin Mills, and in 1956 it was given new life as a nature center.

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    Waterloo Recreation Area -

    After the long work week in the frantic city, I'd take this opportunity to blitz out to the nearest adventurous area full of gravel roads, small inland lakes, and solitude. Waterloo Recreation Area is about 60 miles out. Some relaxing back roads (a mix of paved and hard-packed gravel) were taken out to the nature area.

    After making my rounds to various lakes and select roads, it was time to relax and unwind for a spell. Mud Lake has a quaint and peaceful picnic area that overlooks the lake. Broke out the mobile brew kit and grabbed a cup of Lobster Butter while munching on nature's perfect food - a couple of bananas.

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    Then I kicked back, enjoying the 55° sunny December day, while looking out over the lake. The birds were singing. Tiny finches were fluttering around in close proximity, hoping I'd produce some lunch. There was a nice breeze causing a melodious rustling of the remaining dried up leaves hanging high up in the trees. It was such a serene situation, that I delved into some exceptional reading material, by one of my favorite luminaries, that I had tucked away in one of the panniers.


    I'll share an excerpt with you:

    Fear is a universal experience. Even the smallest insect feels it. We wade in the tidal pools and put our finger near the soft, open bodies of sea anemones and they close up. Everything spontaneously does that. It's not a terrible thing that we feel fear when faced with the unknown. It is part of being alive, something we all share. We react against the possibility of loneliness, of death, of not having anything to hold on to. Fear is a natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.

    If we commit ourselves to staying right where we are, then our experience becomes very vivid. Things become very clear when there is nowhere to escape.

    When we really begin to do this, we're going to be continually humbled. There's not going to be much room for the arrogance that holding on to ideals can bring. The arrogance that inevitably does arise is going to be continually shot down by our own courage to step forward a little further. The kinds of discoveries that are made through practice have nothing to do with believing in anything. They have much more to do with having the courage to die, the courage to die continually.

    Only to the extent that we expose ourselves over and over to annihilation can that which is indestructible be found in us. - Pema Chodron

    Absorbing and digesting that real-world wisdom along with my coffee in this idyllic setting makes for a heightened adventure experience. Takes it to another level.


    When the low-slung sun, after beaming brightly all afternoon from it's autumn-angle, started to drop like a rock, I made my way to the interstate and cruised back home.

    "MABDR LIFE" -

    I'm excited to say that the Backcountry Discovery crew is about (probably February) to release the MABDR ! The Mid-Atlantic Backcountry Discovery Route.

    Up to this point, all of the routes have been out west. Now, those of us in the East will have our own BDR's.

    From what I understand, the MABDR will be the first (and middle) of three connective routes that will run from the Maine/Canadian border - all the way to Florida.

    The first route, the MABDR, will be a 1,080-mile route from Damascus, Virginia to Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania. It will utilize dirt, gravel, and paved back roads winding through remote parts of Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.

    It may take a couple of years before the subsequent and connective Northern and Southern routes are released. That will give us ample time to dissect the middle route.

    So, this will be a new goal of mine. To ride the route - and create a series of posts highlighting the "MABDR LIFE" on my ever-evolving Backcountry Bike. As I've been bolting on the few remaining missing pieces, the versatile GSA is coalescing into the adventurous machine that I've always envisioned. In the latest pictures above you can see the skidplate and Rockfox lower crash bars that I've added. The Rockfox crashbars are built by a South African company. Other than a few little things, just have to mount up the Shinko 804/805 tires, which are 60/40 offroad/on road tires. Maybe over the holidays I'll run over to Kenny's house and mount them up on his No-Mar tire changer. Will be ready to wander in 2018.

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  6. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    Had to filter through traffic and hop the curb up onto the sidewalk to snag this fearsome mural along Gratiot Avenue, just northeast of Downtown Detroit.

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  7. Strypes

    Strypes I'm on a boat!

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    That's a good one!
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  8. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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  9. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    Detroit -

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  10. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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  11. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    Evaporation Fog -

    The last morning in Marietta, I'd made a point of getting down to the Ohio River bank before the surreal steam fog lifted from the waters surface.

    As the crisp autumn air collided with the warmer waters surface layer, a condensational delight transpired - and my camera caught all of it's magnificence.

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  12. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    That last one is an awesome picture Jeff. Thanks for posting.
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  13. popscycle

    popscycle Fahren Away

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    That's a winner! The only possible way it could be better would be if a train were on the bridge, making it an 11 on a scale of 10.
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  14. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    "The Triple Nickel" and beyond -

    Leaving Marietta, I ran 550 west until it crossed the legendary 555; "The Triple Nickel." Then the rollercoaster ride ensued, as I worked my way north. I've ridden a lot of great roads in various parts of the country and if there is a defining feature of 555 that differentiates it a bit from many of the other engaging roads that I've experienced, I'd say it is the hills that rise and then drop out from under you - often just before a sharp turn. The king of undulation. Super curvy too.

    A 555 road sign and a yellow twisty sign are one and the same - synonymous.


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    The simple and tranquil farmland is the icing on the cake.

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    It had turned out to be an incredible day. Especially that deep into October. It was warm and windy. Shortly into 555, I came across a pull-off, actually a small lane leading onto a farmers property. It was a remote and isolated stretch of road on top of a hill overlooking a shallow valley and farm off in the distance. I just sat there, transfixed, enjoying the warm fall breeze rustling across my body. That bittersweet feeling had overcome me. The satisfaction of a good ride and a splendid moment coupled with the knowledge of the diminishing weather that was following closely behind the sweet breeze and the close of the riding season; the last ride of the year.

    A sweet section of an S curve.


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    I've always felt that rural Southern Ohio has the most inviting looking churches. Perfect settings. I'd consider attending a place like this.

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    Came across this small circular loop amidst the tree-lined road. In the middle of the looped drive was a grassy area that would be ideal for a layover. I'll bet if you rolled into here under darkness and layed out your bivy under that good-sized tree, you'd be left alone. Marked it on the GPS. Might have to give it a try someday.

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    Had to do a turn around as I passed through Chesterhill. Backtracked after blowing by this old Quaker House with an interesting sign outlining some of the slave related activity in it's history. Hope you can make out the text in the picture.

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    A wicked, sharp corner. Cambered - and at the top of a hill. Better pay attention. The GSA is at the top, next to the 555 sign.

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    Eventually I ended up back on dirt, zig-zagging my way across the state - as I so often do. It never seems to gets old.

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    When you see these skinny lines all over the dirt road you know your in Amish Country. Buggy wheel tracks. The horse shit is another good indicator.

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  15. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    Great American Crossroad -

    About halfway home from Marietta and I rode into the town of Bucyrus, Ohio. Pulled up to a fascinating acrylic mural by Eric Grohe. His three-dimensional art of transformation has turned this once bleak wall into a thing of beauty and awe.

    Over 80 local citizens posed for the figures in the mural, which depicts this same square early in the last century.

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    This mural was finished around the year 2000. Thirteen years later, Eric Grohe made a return trip from Seattle, Washington to touch up the mural; it was in need of touch ups after the mortar in the brick began cracking from moisture. However, the paint has withstood the weather well, which Grohe attributes to a tip from a chemist who works for Sherwin Williams; Grohe was advised to use a multi-pigment paint.

    Also of notable interest - To achieve the 3-D effect, Grohe said he is using drawing principles from the 1400's. He explained that, "Two Italian architects codified, or wrote down, the principles of perspective drawing. Until that time people were doing drawings and paintings sort of in perspective, but there were no given set of rules or guidelines to go from and understand how that worked."

    Just up the road from this mural is his "Liberty Remembers" mural. You may remember that I posted it awhile back. It is the amazing 3-D rendering of the Statue of Liberty holding a dying soldier. Both of these murals were funded completely by donations.


    A few too many drinks, and you might walk right into the wall.

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  16. Strypes

    Strypes I'm on a boat!

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    What day of the week did you ride the Triple Nickel? Approximately what time of day?
  17. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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    Sunday - October 22nd, 2017 at 11:35 AM.
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  18. Strypes

    Strypes I'm on a boat!

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    Thank you.
  19. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

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