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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by spling, Sep 21, 2020.
The traffic is
The traffic is kind of congested in Yellowstone once you get closer to Old Faithful, but it still beats NYC traffic.
A pic of bison and a geyser in the Background @ Yellowstone
Grand Prismatic via Fairy Trail
There's a lake in Yellowstone and notice that there are a bunch of dead/burnt trees from forest fires. Yellowstone as a bunch of sections.
Scratched screen from parts dealership in Cody WY
Peak of Beartooth hwy Mountain
new universal mirror
I got back pretty late to Gillete WY e.g. 9PM and barely had enough time to grab food and parts at Walmart for an oil change. Unfortunately they didn't have an appropriately sized oil drain pan so I decided to get 2.7L storage container that worked. I also got a breaker bar just incase I couldn't remove the oil drain plug bolt, but found it wasn't a problem so I returned it the next day.
I do remember the guy at the parts dealership quoting $100 for an oil change a bit steep imo, not to mention I preferred to do something simple by myself for a third of the cost. Getting shop towels made the whole process much easier/smoother.
In hindsight, I would have probably visited Grand Teton, instead of doing beartooth hwy for a 2nd time as it's pretty close by. Doing beartooh wasn't as fun as there was a slow car in front of me for most of the ride.
GT was pretty amazing, we only did a fly thru due to gobs of throbbing, sweating, glistening, jiggling, mouth breathing hordes....next time we will explore more there in off season.
send more pix!!!
Day 6: Gillette to Sioux City
After waking up at 6AM I proceeded to change my oil at the hotel parking lot. Fortunately for me the shop towels made the job easier and the oil drain plug wasn't over torqued so it was easy to take off (no breaker bar required).
Yea fresh oil. Note: I didn't change the oil filter, but will do that when I get home. The old oil was really dirty. Oil used was good old Rotella T6, which works fine on my bike.
The Walmart in Gillette WY, was the biggest one I've ever been to.
Kind of boring shot, but it was huge. I thought about taking a pic inside but didn't want to be escorted by security and came back here to return that breaker bar I've never used.
First stop was Mount Rushmore, which had one of the most impressive multi-floor parking garages. This whole place is kind of a scam imo as you have to pay $10 for parking and can't use your national park pass.
This is a shot from the paid area.
Bigger shot of Mount Rushmore. It's great having a 200mm lens.
In hindsight I should have went to Sturgis first before coming over here as I could have taken a pic from the road without paying and spending time getting a ticket/ going through the parking garage...
Next stop was the town of Sturgis. Around here there's a place called Deadwood that a rider told me about when I was at Mount Rushmore. Hopefully one day I could be more hardcore and get a KTM Adventure bike and go offroad.
Main Street of Sturgis
Day 6 continued.
While riding through I heard about Badlands and thought I should check it out.
Shot at the Badlands
Some goats at the National Park.
Obligatory bike shot
I was originally planning to head south and ride through Nebraska but I was close to running out of gas as my bike takes premium and the Indian Reservation gas stations only has 87. Along the way I passed by a Covid checkpoint whom mentioned you'd get fined 1000 dollars if you go into an Indian Reserve. Fortunately my GPS guided me in the correct direction.
At Wanlee there was only a single gas station that only 87. Unfortunately at White River all of the stations didn't have 91 working so I had to head up to Murdo, which was around 22 miles away. Fortunately I made it and then got decided to go Sioux Falls for the night.
$50-60 gives you a lot of value in South Dakota, which I thought was nicely decorated. I arrived here pretty late after midnight.
Day 7: Sioux City to Bowling Green. This was an iron butt type of day and didn't arrive to the hotel until after midnight again.
Since I didn't get a chance to ride through Nebraska I thought I'd do it today while heading to Omaha.
Obligatory picture in a Nebraska corn field.
Maybe not the best pic of corn, but was the best one I saw at the side of the road.
The road down looks like most of Nebrasha or Iowa.
In Omaha I took a pic of the Kiewit building, the HQ of Berkshire Hathaway
In Iowa there are lots of wind turbines and it was awful windy as my bike was getting pushed around. A lady I saw riding a harley didn't have the same problem, I guess I need to gain weight and getting a heavier/lower bike.
Arriving in Bowling Greens, KY. I had the best Pizza in KY (opened after midnight). I was surprised Dominos was opened until 1AM. Needless to say I regretted eating it tomorrow morning as I was so weak and struggled to get out of bed.
Day 8: Bowling Green to Asheville.
I thought I could have made it all the way back home to NYC, which was doable, but I spent way too much time at Mammoth Caves and made a bit of a detour to visit Tail of the Dragon and the Blue Ridge Parkway.
I arrived at Mammoth Caves around 9:15AM and had to wait until 10:45AM to do a self guided tour. Note: you have to pay $18 for this and it's not included in the National Park Pass. Overall I'd skip this place and not recommend it.
Visitor area in Mammoth Caves
Walkway down to the cave, was kind of nice to be surrounded by trees.
Entrance to the cave, which you can only visit a 1 mile long section and have to walk back the same way.
Inside the dimly lit cave
Looking back at the entrance of the cave. I should have used a monopod or a lower ISO, but meh.
Off to Corbin Kentucky to eat O.G. KFC at O.G. KFC (O.G., original gangster)
More pics of O.G. KFC
This place is supposed to be a museum and offers tours, but that's been closed due to Covid.
Incase you're wondering. Lots of people from Kentucky eat KFC. I got here around 3PM and there was a line for the drive through. Since I didn't have a car, I had to eat while squatting down like a hobo.
Off to ride TotD (Trail of the Dragon)
Spoiler Alert. I didn't die and enjoyed this in some ways more than beartooth hwy as slow cars pull over instead of driving below the speed limit. Plus there's the nice biker vibe around. I would if I should tailgate them in 1st gear next time.
At Dealer's Gap, south of TotD
I survived the Dragon and had no pain.
That was some ride, thank you.
Day 9: Asheville to NYC
Yesterday I thought I was going to hit the blue ridge parkway but ran out of time. Originally I thought about doing the whole thing, but got bored after 80 miles and took the highway to Skyline Drive at Shenadoah.
Visiting the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center.
Kind of a cool building, but it was still closed when I got here. I believe the sign said it's America's drive.
Pic of the smokey mountains which look like they're smoking from the Blue Ridge Parkway
After riding 80+ miles I thought it was nicer to take roads outside of the Blue Ridge Parkway. This is the entrance of skyline drive by Shenadoah NP.
There wasn't a place to park in front of the sign so this was the next best thing.
Cool critter like the shade of my bike.
I got distracted by the scenary and accidentally went offroad a bit.
Fortunately the only damage was my turn signal popping off. Luckily I had electrical tape on me as I taped the USB port on my USB charger just in case in rained. Once I got home I was able to take of the fairing and pop it back in.
A lot of the views look kind of similar like this.
A nice pic of the sun at Shenandoah before I headed back home. Note: I did the whole drive which was around 100 miles long and you should get fuel beforehand as there are no gas stations.
Total mileage of the trip was 5996 miles in 9 days, which averages to 666 miles per day.
Final Odometer Trip reading.
Glad you made it home safe. Thanks for sharing your ride with us
Sweet RR mate. We did some driving in the States last year and the whole time I wished I was on the bike. We did LA-Vegas-Denver via Zion NP, North Rim of The Grand Canyon, Mesa Verde, Million Dollar HWY through Silverton. You Yanks are spoilt for good riding country that's for sure :)
Should have been gas at big meadows? The true beauty of Shenandoah is from hiking. I know tough to do off a bike, but, seriously, more than just the road. Lots of bears! Great trip of yours, thanks for documenting it for the rest of us. Gas is tougher to find on the blue ridge. But, I know a listing of where it is available exits.
yeah.....but it pails to compare to Italy, Dolomiti, Sicily, Sardinia, Andorra, Pyrenees, France.....by #ItalianMistressNo2 (bicycle)....planning a moto trip thru those regions next spring/summer....if/when it opens up
you guys have it all....and in a tight compact area
I hear you on that, have ridden Tuscany, Sardinia, Corsica, The Dolomites, Slovenia, Croatia and a wee bit of Austria and there's epic mountain passes everywhere. We are tentatively planning another trip in 2023 just hoping the world is more accessible by then.
If you want accessible (and decent) riding don't come to the West Coast of Australia then :-/
Thanks for the great report; 666 miles per day - you set a fast pace. Glad you are back safe and sound.
Wow thats a pretty cool ride. Also lived in BK for awhile (just moved to CO thanks to remote work policy.. woo hoo), and totally get the need for those 800 mile days, impressive to pull that off and make it real fun like you did.