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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by WanderOnAHonda, Aug 7, 2015.
PM me if you need a place to camp in MS. Can sleep in AC shop. I live about 18 miles from MS River bridge at Helena, AR where TAT leaves Mississippi going into AR.
I did the TAT solo in 2013. You can do repairs or maintenance on bike if needed.
Have a Great Trip!
Holy crap, I am SO totally IN with this one!!! It's been a while since I've seen a ride report that really caught my eye and, yowzas, you guys are freaking hard core.
Please don't stop with the storytelling, I'm currently mainlining the videos over on your Youtube channel and, DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMN, you guys have done some serious stuff over the last year!!!
ETA: OMFG. Your motorcycle vlog series of this latest trip is hands down the best I've ever seen.
I lost track of you two and here you were in Cleveland,Tn. where my daughter lives. She did a semester at Cambridge and is a great cook. Had I known , I would have tried to set you up with some comfort.
And you could have met the future adventurer Rory, here peeling around on his Oset.
Rory is 3.
Your Alaska to Argentina youtube clip was the funniest fucking thing I have ever laid eye's on!!! Cheers from Florida
I have been watching Ed's videos for a while. Glad to see you two on ADVRider. Looking forward to all the posts to come!
Friday 7th Aug
Well it was 'Trans-America Back Roads' today, but despite the lack of dirt and gravel roads Ed still managed to crash. It was rather spectacular and left him and his bike in a hole and me killing myself laughing.
Something had fallen out of his basket, and as he looked back to see what it was he veered off on to the grass verge. He looked forward and realised he was headed straight for a drainage hole, but as he tried to steer away from it the camber claimed his back wheel and he went straight in! It was very funny, for me at least, and luckily Ed and little Ninety were unhurt. That's the beauty of a C90, it's very hard to hurt yourself, usually because you're laughing so much.
As we continued on the back roads and country lanes we bumped in to another couple of TAT riders all the way from Australia. It was great to have a chat with them, and although we're much slower than them, they said that because they'll have more hangovers than us there's a chance we'll catch up with them. I hope so, I've really missed meeting other travellers from other countries.
There was a fair bit of hill climbing to do and our bikes aren't exactly the fastest up hill, but it gives you time to admire the scenery. There's really beautiful countryside in this part of Tennessee, and it's much greener than I imagined it to be.
For those of you who don't know, Ed has been having trouble with his engine for months, and after extensive investigations it's come to the point where he needs to get a new one. My engine has been great so far and runs at around 100-110C, whereas Ed's runs around 150-175C!! As I'm sure many of you are aware, engines really aren't supposed to run that hot. Luckily Ed's rigged up a cooling system for his bike called the Squirtatron 3000, which consists of a water bottle, tube and spray cap. It seems to be doing the job, and helps keep us cool too. It's so ruddy hot here that you soon find yourself overheating, but with a quick squirt from the Squirtatron 3000 you get a new lease of life!
We decided to take a detour to Kentucky, and as it was only back roads and no off-road we ended up leaving the trail early and headed north. The reason for the detour was so Ed could have Kentucky fried chicken in Kentucky. This will probably sound odd but there's been a bit of a theme over the years. He's had KFC in every country he's ridden through, much to my disgust, and felt it was his calling to have KFC in Kentucky. He's also had a chicken kiev in Kiev, a Moscow mule in Moscow, a Long Island iced tea in Long Island, New York style cheesecake in New York, Philadelphia cheese and a Philly cheesesteak in Philadelphia... you get the idea. So I decided to humour him; who am I to deny him these odd and simple pleasures?! We decided to tie it in with a little visit to Tennessee's capital Nashville, and took the quickest route north avoiding the interstate.
We rode until sunset, but when it came to finding a place to camp we couldn't find a campground. Ed spotted a 'Look twice for motorcycles' sign in someone's front yard, and decided to knock on the door to see if they knew anywhere we could camp. The house was owned by a biking couple called Paul and Vicki, and not only did they offer us the use of their yard to camp in, and later a room, but invited us in for a beer and a chat and said to come in in the morning and they'd cook us up a good breakfast! What absolute stars, we couldn't thank them enough.
If you have not been clued into this thread yet, take a look and use the map link. People in the past have been well house, fed and been given copious amounts of adult beverages. Also shop space and emergency rescue.
I hosted an Aussie couple last year traveling the Americas on TW200 Yamahas, I ended up loaning them one of my GPS units to help navigate the back roads.
Here is their report: http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/come-see-the-americas-with-two-or-three-nongs.948014/
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=776925 (Have to download google earth to make it interactive.)
Sat 8th Aug
We were up an hour earlier than planned as we didn't realise that we'd crossed a time zone. I'm a morning person and Ed isn't, and I'm pretty sure he thought I'd tricked him in to waking up early. He was quite awake until I told him it was actually 8am not 9am, and suddenly his face looked all tired and his brain stopped working.
As promised Paul and Vikki cooked us up a feast for breakfast, before sending us on our way in at least 35C heat. I have to say that I don't know exactly what temperature it was as the screen that usually tells me had gone black. I could feel the sweat trickling down my back as we said our thank you's and goodbye's, and it was such a relief once we'd got moving and the wind cooled us down.
The heat became unbearable as we rode on to Kentucky, and both of us felt like we were going to pass out or fall asleep. We were forced to stop for a rest and a cold drink before we continued, and with a new lease of life we carried on and finally made it to Kentucky. Much to Ed's delight KFC had an all-you-can-eat buffet for $5, which is absolutely ridiculous.
Coming from England the cheap prices for food and fuel just blow our mind. To put it in to context, a gallon of fuel here is around $2 a gallon, whereas in England it works out at $10 a gallon. After getting his fill of KFC and enjoying the air-con, we eventually made the trip back down to Nashville, Tennessee.
We'd planned to go and explore the city that night, but after a day of riding in sweltering heat we soon found ourselves passed out in a budget motel room.
Is he going to try Rocky Mountain Oysters when you get there???
Sun 9th, Mon 10th, Tues 11th
There hasn't been much to report as far as riding goes (hence putting 3 days in 1 post) so I won't bore you too much with the other stuff. We ended up visiting Broadway in Nashville on Sunday morning, and had a whiskey and deep fried pickles while listening to some country music. We're not actually whiskey or country music fans but it seemed like the right thing to do at the time.
We also needed to get some supplies for the trail that we'd forgotten, so spent the afternoon doing that. The good thing about the T.A.T is that you're not thrown right in at the deep end, so if you're useless and unorganised like us you have time to sort out extra bits and pieces that you need without putting yourself at risk. It was at the first river crossing that we realised that we'd forgotten to buy dry bags, and when trying to reattach my headset to my helmet we discovered that we'd run out of Duck tape; a code red for adventure riders!
After a night in a free campsite (a rarity in the land of the fee) we made our way back down to the town of Corinth, MS, not only to pick up the trail again, but to visit the legend that is Sam Correro; the creator of the T.A.T. It was an absolute pleasure to meet Sam, and I was very surprised to discover that he's 75! You wouldn't know it to look at him, obviously staying active and riding motorcycles is good for you; any excuse as far as I'm concerned.
Sam welcomed us with open arms, and not only bought us dinner that night and lunch the following day, but also took me to do our laundry and drove us back to a town 30 miles away, as numnuts here had forgotten her purse while picking up a parcel at a UPS store.
He was such a great guy and made the T.A.T more meaningful to us. He has invested endless hours over the last 30 years to creating, maintaining and rerouting the Trans-Am Trail, and has inspired thousands of people to get off the road and explore the multitudes of off-road trails that the U.S. has to offer.
He's dedicated more time than you can imagine to riding and plotting the trail, giving riders the best off-road experience that they could have in the U.S. without having to ride the not so good stuff to find the good stuff. The latter is particularly useful if you're short of time, as you know that you're not going to be wasting time trying to find the good trails. The leg work has already been done for you, leaving you with map reading and navigation which can be a full time job in itself! And talking of full time jobs, despite Sam being retired he still has a full time job with the T.A.T. In between looking after us he's been darting in and out of the office to answer emails, print and post maps, and sort out roll charts.
I also didn't realise that he goes off on trips along the trail several times a year to map diversions and to re-route it when needed. While this may seem like fun and a bit of a holiday, it's actually a lot of work. Yes he gets to go out riding every day, but he also has to stop every mile or so to write down gps points. These then have to be typed up on the computer and changed on the maps and GPS system. Motels, fuel stops and restaurants also need to be kept up to date, as many are sadly closing due to the economy.
Talking to Sam and seeing him in action showed me just how important it is to support him, and show appreciation for the time and money he has dedicated to creating the trail for everyone to enjoy. Buying the gps points and maps from him not only supports Sam and the time and effort that he has invested in the trail, but it also makes it possible for him to continue his ongoing work in keeping the trail up-to-date and current. Sorry if this seems like a plug, but seeing as this thread is about the trail, and after meeting and talking to Sam, I felt it was important to explain just what goes in to making the Trans-America Trail what it is today.
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Talking of which, we're back on it tomorrow!
I like your style, Ed!! And the always smiling Rach!
Enjoying reading this report. Love the humor!
This is exactly what RR's has been missing since Sydney to London on a 105 called Dot. I'm in every which way I can find. Keep it coming guys!!!!
Thanks for your plug about Sam and his efforts. It is under appreciated and the TATis a gem for adventure riders. It is a great experience and a chance to see the country in a way very few people will ever experience . It's not a plug, it's a true statement about what it takes to make it all possible thanks Sam. And thanks Ed and Rach for a great RR.
Such an awesome adventure!!
I can't wait to see what happens!! PM me if you come to the San Francisco area. Best of luck you two!!