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Before it gets too cold!!

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Ginger Beard, Oct 7, 2019.

  1. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    The SEAT and the SM500+ are both available here on ADVR in the Maps and Navigation section. Highly recommend the SM500. Much of the SEAT has seen added pavement over the last few years. Still an enjoyable ride but far less offroad than in it's earlier years.
  2. Sandspit

    Sandspit Been here awhile

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    ^^ great ride report, good on you for getting out and hitting the sand, SHRIMP BOATS!! (love them, many of my friends in the Carolina's work them)...You could have scored a great deal on shrimp if you had a case of cold domestic/cheap beer handy, even at 5:30Am...but what would you do with 5 gallons of shrimp on the trails? Thanks for not handing out the FL routes!!! Most can figure out a route using a few landmarks, towns you mentioned, and google maps. Jai-Alai, Brewed from Cigar City, Tampa (my old stomping grounds in the 80's) packs a punch...7.5% and delicious. Their Maduro Brown Ale is very good as well.
    Ginger Beard likes this.
  3. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    Today was long and hot as I pushed north, trying to cover enough miles that the following day would begin on the actual SEAT route.

    Unfortunately I do believe that the next section on tracks were slightly askew of legality. This is hunting season and I'm pretty sure that my use of an open forest was only due to local hunting lease lands being opened up for season.

    That said, my trespass was rewarded with deep sand that even had me, a self professed sand aficionado, cry out for mercy from the gods of two wheels.

    The entrance to the forest had heavy truck traffic and I was eating dust for the first couple of miles. After that? Silence. I didn't see another car the rest of my many miles through this pine forest.

    These pine tracts are owned by the timber industry and they're laid out in perfect rows. Hypnotizing if you stare too long.

    IMG_20191012_170735.jpg

    IMG_20191012_170746.jpg

    While ripping along through the soft sand, I saw a familiar form in the distance. I slid to a halt right next to a beautiful Timber Rattlesnake. I was really excited to see this fella an in my idiotic exuberance, I completely ignored that they are far more aggressive than the Eastern Diamondbacks which is a snake that I have a lot of experience with handling and photographing. Well, I damn near paid heavily for that little snafu when this snake did something I had never seen a rattler do before. I was behind the snake with my shadow towards it (bad idea) when the little bugger sees the movement. Without hesitation or even a slight warning (like those damn rattles!!) , it leaps rearward in an arch and tries to bite me while upside down and airborne!

    The below pic is right before the serpent parkour and the new stain in my drawers. IMG_20191012_162622.jpg


    And a pic from a safer distance of a now very pissed off Timber Rattler!! You can see the mark from where it dug it's tail into the ground for maximum ass over teakettle attack traction!

    IMG_20191012_162635.jpg


    So I had mentioned the sand kicking my ass. Let me explain. I was in this forest that has been chewed up by logging trucks for generations. To add to it, hunting trucks had rutted and whooped out much of it. Now that's all fine and dandy and I'm damn comfortable in sand. What I AM not is in very good shape right now and after 17 miles of deep churned ruts of powdery sand at the end of a 200 plus miles day in the dirt, I was gassed and starting to make mistakes. I checked my GPS and there were still 11 more miles of this terrain if I kept going. If I took an early escape via a side road then that 11 miles would only be 4. 4 is now my lucky number.




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  4. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    Thanks man!

    I watched them unload the boat and if they were local, I definitely would have hit them up for some fresh shrimp! The Brown Ale is great but tough to find down here in the land of hipsters and IPA.

    The route thing really gets me. I'd love to share the routes with other ADVR's but the concerns that many have for their roads and communities should it get out to the Jeeper and 4x4 crowd is a very understandable worry. I'd hate to be the reason that more shit gets paved or privatized. I'd love to have a sit down with everyone at Polar Bear for some brainstorming.
  5. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    I had planned to camp but other than the WMA which was 30 miles from any provisions, there wasn't much to choose from. I've also learned that in this region prices of paid sites are often very close to the price of a hotel and at a hotel I can wash the stink out of my clothes. Well, that pricing was the case today so hotel it is.

    I coasted into the city of Waycross just before dark and grabbed a cheap room right next to a Mexican joint.


    I yard saled the heck out of my accommodations and promptly hobo bathed my clothes.

    IMG_20191012_183259.jpg

    IMG_20191012_183306.jpg


    Then it was time for some good grub and a few shots of tequila.

    IMG_20191012_192043.jpg

    This is when I met Susanna , the bartender. She was sweet but a bit shy at first . I ordered in Spanish which broke the ice a bit. After a few terrible dad jokes on my part, we began talking. It turns out that she has a pretty adventurous spirit and wants to backpack across the USA. We talked of the political climate in the Americas, her home town and mine along with our respective dreams and aspirations. I did my best to quell her of her fears about leaving a job to go exploring and gave her a few suggestions as to how she can wade into those waters rather than jump. I truly enjoyed chatting with her and hope that she decides to take that trip.


    Susanna , if you ever stumble across this ride report, thanks for the great evening of food, drinks and conversations. Take that trip. You won't regret it!!

    IMG_20191012_195755.jpg


    And with a full belly and happy heart, I headed back to the hotel. A call to my girl and it was off to sleep. I was worn out.



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  6. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    You just had to mention Mexican. I've been craving tacos or burritos or something all day on errands. I held fast and made it home to a joint full of food. There's always tomorrow. No snow but it's close.
    Ginger Beard likes this.
  7. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    Sorry about that. I'll warn you ahead of time that I have Mexican 2-3 more times on this ride!:lol3


    It's in the 90's here... Send cold stat!
  8. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    Woke up to -15c in clear blue and frost. Hit -9c later. Tomorrow to hit +6c. We flirt with the devil around the freezing mark. We're in dangerous territory now. I was once talked into a riding weekend to Jasper on Remembrance Day (Veterans Day) for November 11 weekend. Nice ride up; an empty hotel with a name your price; pick your table for dining. Ride back was pure hell. I learned there are exactly 11 bridge decks between Jasper and the park gate back to Edmonton - all of which required feet down coasting and puckering with ZERO risk of touching a brake. This season can bring anything overnight. Nothing like hearing the wolves at night because there's no one in town too early for ski season and the winter crowds and busses.
  9. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

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    Enjoying your report @Ginger Beard - Well done.

    Most of us in more Northern latitudes are getting preparing to hunker down for the winter. In my case, gardens to bed, lawn mower winterized, deck furniture & umbrella put away, bird-feeders hung, snow thrower started up, and snow shovels out.

    I plan on 2 more rides this year - to and from the local Guzzi shop for service, then it will get tucked into the garage, under-cover, with a Battery Tender for the next 5-6 months.

    Please continue sir....
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  10. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    Not one bit of that sounds like a good time though hearing the wolves howl would be amazing. We're just now entering our riding season here in FL.
    rider1150gsadv likes this.
  11. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    Thank you !!

    Oof , that is a long winter. Snow machine time?
  12. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    I slept well and arose to a cool morning. The crispness in the air highlighted my movement north. I was eager to get rolling and packed up quickly after enjoying some free coffee (not really, I paid for the room). Today was the first day that I felt like I was on a road trip. That realization energized me to the point of being downright giddy.


    I loaded up the bike and went to the office to drop off my key when an interesting exchange happened. First I will preface this little anecdote by saying that I have a spent a lot of time in rough low income places and can tell when I've been "marked" before I can even spot the person that's planning on hassling me.

    I park in front of the office and before the key is in the off position I see a man approaching me from across the lot. No sooner than I'm off the bike, this younger dude (no older than 25) asks me if he can ride my bike. Now, I'm not sure what kind of fool would allow some random person to ride off on their bike but that question made me wonder how many times this line has worked for him. Are there people that would be too afraid to say "no" ? In stark contrast, I don't think that this kid was expecting my reaction which was to laugh loud as hell and then say "I'm going to be real honest here, there's not a scenario I can think of that would convince me to let you ride off on my bike with all of my shit strapped to it." He then proceeds to tell me what a great rider he is and I let him know that it's cool that he rides but he's still not riding my bike. He begins to tell me how he's broke and starts unloading his life story which included prison and addiction. I let him finish and respond by telling him my tales of whoa and how I was homeless for awhile. The exchange began to take a turn toward understanding that the world is full of problems and that everyone has their own stories. He then sheepishly asked for money which I could tell he knew he wouldn't be getting from me, not because I have a problem helping people in need but because he knew that he wasn't in need but rather in "want". I won't feed that urge. Instead I offered him a cup of coffee and asked his name while reaching out to shake his hand. I asked him if he ever planned on helping himself out of the pattern that he's obviously stuck in which garnered a long pause.... "Yeah, some day." Which , as I've learned over the years, means "Yes I would love too but don't know how." which is a really bad place to be mentally. I looked up a place that does counseling for the homeless and asked him if he'd be willing to accept some real help towards getting his life on track. His expression changed from one of a man trying to put on a hustle to that of a young kid in some real pain. "Man I'm tired of this shit. This ain't livin'. I got a little girl that I haven't seen in three years." He put the directions into his phone , gave me a hug and told be safe.


    It was an encounter that left me a bit saddened yet hopeful. I truly hope this young man is able to get help and turn his life around. At the very least I hope he's able to find some joy in life.



    With that I hit the road and was soon riding through the cotton farms of south GA. There's a lot of history and sorrow surrounding this little plant and the industry that it supports. Taking into consideration that I hate what this industry did to so many lives in the past (a past whose consequences still linger) , it pains me to know that our textiles industry is fading. We've outsourced and automated not just intangible employment figure scrawled on a graph but we've mechanized and traded away lives and livelihoods with little consideration beyond profitability.

    One little plant...
    IMG_20191013_101507.jpg

    I do love the high speed blasting that these clear sight lines and smooth roads provide!

    IMG_20191013_102232.jpg

    You could damn near use cruise control on these roads.

    IMG_20191013_115336.jpg


    And here is the net result of a community that is so dependent upon a single industry.

    IMG_20191013_120250.jpg
    And another...
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    IMG_20191013_121347.jpg

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    And another...
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    I find this region of GA to be absolutely beautiful and stop for few minutes at a crossroads just to take it all in. To many this may not seem like much when compared to the vistas of CO or the vast skies of NV but this is the south and I love it.



    IMG_20191013_123629.jpg

    I was now officially on the SEAT route and settling into a good groove.





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  13. Joe Motocross

    Joe Motocross Adjustafork.com - CEO

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    Good shit man!! Those sandy sections look like good fun. Love the history lesson about Elsie. I have an idea of what to do with those shrimp: wrap them in bacon and cook with the Adjustafork. Too bad you're bros couldn't do that with the pig as well. Heavy encounter you had there with that young guy, thanks for sharing that. Good on you for punching terrain in your backyard, carry on!!
    dano619 and Ginger Beard like this.
  14. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

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    Awesome how you responded to the addicted, homeless guy GB. Few people would have seen that encounter as a chance to help someone, beyond sharing their pocket change (which really doesn't help).
  15. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    Hah! I need to get an Adjust-a-fork from you. Maybe an early Christmas present to myself! We all busted their chops for not field dressing that boar!! Hell, it had already volunteered to bleed out! Yeah man, one of those chance encounters that leaves an impression. I've lost a lot of friends to the streets and I hate seeing someone waste their lives in misery if it can be helped.

    Thanks man,Maybe enough of an encounter to ignite a spark but who knows ? I sincerely hope that kid chooses living over existing.
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  16. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    As I rode further north, I began skirting the border between GA and SC , crossing it from time to time. I'm honestly not even sure what state I had lunch in but I will tell you that for gas station food, it wasn't half bad...


    And man can't eat a hug.

    IMG_20191013_131905.jpg

    The terrain really began to gain elevation as I pressed north. Unfortunately there was a storm front coming in from the south west that had been threatening to dampen my ride. It certainly couldn't dampen my mood though!

    IMG_20191013_161459.jpg
    That's a big smile I'm hiding.
    IMG_20191013_161512.jpg



    Watching the storm roll in. If you look closely on the left of this pic just above the treeline you can see a couple of small clouds that look out of place. In reality those are the stacks of a nuclear power plant just south of Augusta GA.

    IMG_20191013_162133.jpg


    Within minutes of the last pic, the weather soured and a deluge began to literally rain on my parade. It began with a heavy rain and turned into really freakin' heavy rain! I decided to cancel my spot on the river and look for a hotel. I wound up riding past a few hotel outside of Augusta in hopes of grabbing a room at an old hotel in the downtown Aiken SC. I rode for 35 minutes along crowded highways in the pouring rain only to find the hotel completely closed up. SHIT!! Well, I had passed a hotel about 20 minutes back that looked decent so off I went, heading back towards Augusta. I pulled into the hotel and as I was eagerly getting off of my bike and fighting to escape my soaked gloves, I took a second to look around. The place was empty except for a couple of long term rentals. One of these had a lot of "traffic" just in the 2 or 3 minutes that I was there. I was starting to second guess getting a room at a hotel that only had head high porthole style windows. The last nail in that coffin of the "Do I,don't I?" game was when a barefoot crackhead popped out of the back alley and tried to bum a cigarette...In the pouring rain. NOPE!! to the crackhead and 5this sketchy ass hotel. Fucking hell man!! I remember passing another hotel about 15 or so minutes back in the other direction. Woohoo!!! Back I went to where I'd wind up actually getting a room. I pulled in and the manager greeted me. He was super nice despite that I was being a bit of a grouch. I apologized for seeming like an ungrateful asshole too which he just laughed and said " No worries, this weather effects the mind.". Indeed. He hooked me up with a room right off of the front office so that I could unload under the awning rather than in the rain and then told me to go ahead and park up on the sidewalk outside of the room. Nice!!


    IMG_20191013_211703.jpg


    I unloaded the bike and hit up Zaxby's which was the only thing open that was within walking distance. Apparently it's the freaking hot spot on Sunday night as within minutes of getting to my table, the place pack up solid with people standing and waiting just to get a seat. I ate quickly so that others could sit and then I hit the gas station for snacks.

    On my way to the gas station I wanted to take a short cut behind the store. I hopped the curb then the hedge and was greeted to a pants-less man squatting behind the car wash and taking a shit. There was a pause and a realization of the tenseness that can only accompany that moment when one dude meets the gaze of another during that sweaty big push. I'M OUT!! I went right back over the hedge and the curb , taking the long way to the store. :lol3



    I wandered back to my room in the increasing rain and called Sarah then quickly hit the sack. The end to a rather long day.



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  17. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    I didn't have a very restful sleep that night because apparently the couple upstairs were gat dang vampires. They'd go in and out of their room over and over and then get into their car and drive off only to return 20 minutes later just as I was falling asleep. I had hoped that they'd stop ion their own but that hope was crushed. Somewhere around 2 in the morning they were sitting in their truck, which was parked outside of my room, and smoking cigarettes. I walked out in my underwear and stood in front of their bumper in the light of their headlights and just stared at them. In my head all I could think of was putting their cigarettes on their foreheads just to hear the sizzle but outside I was just clenching and unclenching my jaw as they asked me repeatedly what it was that I wanted. Apparently that is some weird shit because after about 5 minutes of them trying to talk to me with no response other than my eyes darting from one face to another, they started their truck and moved it. I went back inside and didn't hear a peep from them after that. Somehow I think that the point was gotten.

    I woke up late the next day and decided to do a quick chain adjustment, check my air filter and lube the chain And of course NOW they open the tequila bar! :dirtdog


    *Spoiler alert; this was the only time on this trip that my tools would come out. I LOVE YOU WR250R!!!

    IMG_20191014_095152.jpg

    I ate my snacks, drank some milk and beat feet north. I'd be meeting my buddies at their cabin in Robbinsville NC tonight and was hoping to get there before dark. The sun was out and the temps were in the low 60's. Perfect!

    IMG_20191014_111539.jpg
    One more of many turtle rescues on this trip. This fellow is an Eastern Box turtle (though opinion is changing on whether or not they are a turtle or a tortoise). He's had a rough life. Broken shell and several old puncture scars tell the tale of a pretty vicious animal attack.
    IMG_20191014_112644.jpg


    You'll note my winky headache eye brought on by the realization that I had to backtrack several miles in order to meet back up with the route. It was a premature wince because the reroute was way better than the route!!

    IMG_20191014_113144.jpg
    Yeah and it got way better!! It went from fairly groomed to "Well no one has been down this in a long time!".
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    Back on route ,I passed through several clear cuts.
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    And motored through pictorial farmland.

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    It was now around 12:30 and I was pretty hungry. Gas station Pop-Tarts weren't fueling me for as long as I'd hoped. Time to find some lunch.




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  18. dano619

    dano619 Long timer Supporter

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    What a great format for your ride report......"on the road updates!" And now, the detailed adventure!

    I got the full visual of you seeing the dude takin a dump :)......You have great writing skills!!

    Thanks!!
    Ginger Beard likes this.
  19. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    I turned towards the town of McCormick and stopped at Hardee's for some grub. All part of my diet plan...

    While there I overheard a few gentlemen talking about my bike, trying to figure out what displacement it was. I interjected and told them that it was a 250 which got a "It's only a 250?!! So you trailered it up right? You didn't ride that from Florida , did you?". I assured them that I'd ridden and then told them my plan for 2 weeks on the road. They all laughed and told me how cool it was to see someone taking only back roads and actually slowing down enough to really see the areas that they are traveling through. One of the men then told me of a college buddy that had taken an XL350 from north Florida to New York back in the 80's and how everyone thought he was nuts but he did it and had a great time. It's funny how no matter how much the world changes, certain things remain constant.

    The conversation shifted to hunting (the men were on a deer hunting trip) and that's when I tried to get them to send me some venison. That didn't work out but we all had a good laugh at my expense. :lol3


    I finished up and hit the road. Today's ride would be one of my favorite solo days of the trip. It may sound funny but my favorite days on the road are those where I think the least. The temps were perfect with my mind as clear as the sky and some really enjoyable back roads riding was the icing on the proverbial cake.. It's really hard to have a bad time riding this region of the USA.

    IMG_20191014_120259.jpg

    I passed over a couple of old one lane bridges, then while riding a bit of blacktop to connect dirt section, I spotted an overgrown road entrance that had been blocked off years ago.

    It was the original single lane bridge for the highway that I was on. I rode out onto it in order to check it out and grab a couple of pics. About halfway across at the highest point, someone had put up a hunting blind. Hopefully this is to shoot wildlife and not passers by on the new road which is visible from here. What an odd spot to hunt from.
    IMG_20191014_120935.jpg
    Though it might be easy pickins' when that unsuspecting hog or deer comes wandering in for a sip of water.
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    I was back on the dirt in short order and truly loving every minute of it.
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    I never saw another vehicle on these dirt byways...
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    A view from the bridge over the Savannah River which separates GA and SC.
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    This poor helmet
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    Back in GA

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    I seem to have an audience
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    I made quick work of the last section of northern GA and had made it to NC, the land of the perfectly polished twistie roads.
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  20. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard Instagram @motopossum

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    Thanks Dano, I decided to try this out purposely rather than have it start with details and devolve due to bad internet or lack of time. Trying to do all of the writing from the road often results in leaving out a lot of the little things in my experience so I've found it easier to take notes along the way while posting technical details then write "the story" of the trip later.


    BTW, I'm not sure that I'd be thanking anyone for THAT visual!! :rofl