Rach & Ed ride the TAT on Honda C90's

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by WanderOnAHonda, Aug 7, 2015.

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  1. tlub

    tlub Long timer Supporter

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    I hope you two are keeping hydrated. The dehydration one can experience in the South during summer is insidious- especially if you are not ATGATT. Just stopping every hour and drinking will not do it. Water is absorbed into the blood quickly, but absorbed by the tissues (where you really need it) much more slowly. So you can drink a ton every hour, pee clear, and still be dehydrated, losing electrolytes as well. (I read that whereas a dog or horse can hydrate in minutes, humans can take up to 16 hours to completely rehydrate after dehydration. I think we have probably ruled the water holes, or stored water in camp, for a long time during evolution.) You really need a few small drinks every 10-15 minutes, and keep it up. It will make a HUGE difference in how you feel. Not to mention keeping you alert and safe. The most practical way to do this without stopping is with a Camelback or Platypus or generic WallyWorld equivalent. Plus the reservoir holds a lot of water for later camping!
    BTW, The Iron Butt Association has an excellent article on hydration on their website, and I encourage you to read it.
    It's a shame you didn't route through Madison, WI. It's a great place that is a very nice alternative to the mundane sameness reality of most of America. Bicycles and two wheels rule, at least in the summer, and studded bicycle tires and small cycle tires are sold a lot for the winter. I have seen many bikes the size of yours plowing through the snow in the winter. Plus you could experience great beer. And more great beer. And have a place to stay.
    Enjoy!
    #61
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  2. RyanFL

    RyanFL Long timer

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    Rach, do not let Ed reroute to Cleveland, no matter what.
    #62
  3. tlub

    tlub Long timer Supporter

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    This. :D I don't even like flying over Cleveland.
    #63
  4. PFFOG

    PFFOG Richard Alps-aholic Supporter

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    But maybe they want to see all those famous American's enshrined in the rock and roll hall of fame, like The Stones, Beetles, Kinks, The Who, Zeppelin etc..............................;)
    #64
  5. appliance57

    appliance57 Long timer

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    Tonight we dine in Cleveland!!!!
    #65
  6. tlub

    tlub Long timer Supporter

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    Yeah but for you and me, that's Rock and Roll. For them, it's grandpa's music. Have you seen any of those guys from those bands lately? It's depressing as hell. I mean, I don't look that old so what the heck happened to them? And who is that old guy looking at me every time I pass a plate glass window?:lol3
    #66
  7. PFFOG

    PFFOG Richard Alps-aholic Supporter

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    And for them it could LITERALLY be grandpa's music, as they are all British bands.
    #67
  8. Lone biker

    Lone biker Adventurer

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    Dark Helmet, I second your comments about Sam and his continued effort on the TAT. I live in MS and have know him for quite some time. He is a class A person.
    Great report Ed & Rach. Keep them doggies rolling.
    #68
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  9. resslerm

    resslerm Adventurer

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    I was wondering if you two would start a RR on here! Hope to catch up to you guys before you finish the TAT, or on the road south. Enjoy!

    Matt Ressler
    #69
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  10. singletrackjack

    singletrackjack Adventurer

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    Got my pic (in black) with Sam on the loosenut 2014 ride last November along with Loosenut Himself and Bigdog - all legends in my eyes - where you guys at now? I'm thinking somewhere south of me - been watching your progress for months - would of loved to been in your paths - keep up the great RR and will be following along!

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    #70
  11. justplainray

    justplainray ucancallmeray

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    Hey!
    What's up with you guys?
    Haven't heard from you since August 11th.
    Hope all is well.
    justplainray
    #71
  12. WanderOnAHonda

    WanderOnAHonda Been here awhile

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    Day 7
    Weds 12th Aug

    I thought Sam was underestimating what we can achieve when he said that we'd probably only do about 100 miles, but when we only managed 30 miles I thought that he was actually quite optimistic! We would have got a lot further had we left town straight away, but we decided to stop off at the local Honda dealer to get a few things for the bikes and admire their collection of vintage motorcycles. I'm pleased we went there as not only was there an extensive collection of gorgeous bikes, which saw me saying 'I want that one, and that one, and that one...' over and over again, but we also got top notch service which seems to be lacking these days.

    We got some new air filters as ours were on their last legs, and also a new ignition barrel each as the Chinese ones we'd bought on ebay only lasted a week, suplise suplise. Ed was very happy to have a key as his bike has been hot wired for the past six weeks, and I was happy to have a new one as my bike keeps turning itself off every five minutes which is rather annoying. By the time we'd done that and had lunch it was around 2pm when we finally left Corinth.

    It was when Ed got a flat about 20 miles later that we remembered that we were supposed to get another spare tube and some more rubber cement, typical.


    Continued...

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    #72
  13. WanderOnAHonda

    WanderOnAHonda Been here awhile

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    Luckily we had just enough rubber cement to fix the puncture, which was caused by a long piece of metal going right in.

    We were just setting about fixing it when a local woman drove past in her car and stopped to see if we needed any help. Here name was Jessica and she was brilliant. Not only did she go back to her house to get us a tub of rubber cement to take with us, but she also presented us with a little box of things she'd found on the road, ranging from a flint arrow head to some prehistoric black teeth.

    They were fascinating, and as Jessica had a love for history we got an insight in to what the road used to be used for back in the day. You forget that hundreds of years ago native Americans walked the roads we ride now, and that thousands of years before that it used to be the sea bed. She chatted to us about all sorts while Ed fixed the tyre, and then invited us back to her house as she wanted to give us more things. She used to be in Intel in the Marine Corp, based in Iraq, and had so many stories and insights that really got me thinking. And being in 'the buckle of the bible belt' as she called it, it was refreshing to talk to an American i n that particular area that was so broad minded and got straight to the point. She certainly had a way with words, having us laughing a lot with all her stories, and we very much admired her outright honesty with her thoughts and feelings. She pointed out that if she voiced her opinions to anyone that lived within a 30 mile radius she would probably be outcast. I think we were a breath of fresh air for her, and she jumped at the chance to chat with us and help us, in fact she couldn't do enough for us. We left with water bottles, army rations, freeze-dried food and some waterproof matches, and if we could have carried anything else she would have plied us with more.

    It had been great chatting to Jessica but as we were losing light we had to make a move, and managed another 10 miles or so before we spotted a place to pitch our tent. Everywhere has 'POSTED' and no trespassing signs, but we managed to find a little spot hidden from the road and put the tent up for the night. Despite not getting that far it had been an interesting day, it's amazing the people you cross paths with when you least expect it. I think it was Ted Simon that once said that he looked forward to his bike breaking down, as that's when the adventure starts. So true.

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    #73
  14. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter

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    So neat you got to meet Sam.
    At the local bike shop you stopped at in Sam's home town---you mentioned looking at all the old bikes.
    One of those old bikes in there is the Honda XR600 that Sam originally laid out the Trans America Trail on.

    I was down to Sams in the spring---and he traded it in on his new Honda 250 while I was there.
    The owner Dewayne has put it on display for all to see from now on---------now how cool is that.

    BigDog
    #74
  15. ROAD DAMAGE

    ROAD DAMAGE Long timer Supporter

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    You two are very entertaining :lol3 ................... and somewhat inspirational :pope .................. and a little mental !! :wings :happay

    Thank you for posting your adventures!

    Hi Mark. :wave

    Holler if you get to Colorado ............. we can all go out and ride bikes in the snow and ice.
    Or at the very least we could show you two some Rocky Mountain hospitality.

    RD Rob
    #75
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  16. Luna Tique

    Luna Tique dreamer of adventure

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    I applaud your moxie and wonderful sense of adventure.
    I love seeing smaller cc bikes on long trips showing how capable they really are. [​IMG]
    and look forward to your next chapter!
    #76
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  17. WanderOnAHonda

    WanderOnAHonda Been here awhile

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    Day 8
    Thurs 13th Aug

    I got up around 6.45am to a beautiful morning. I love the light at that time of the day, and the red dirt glowed as the sun shone through the trees.

    I absolutely love the colour of the dirt here, and with the green on the trees and the big bright blue sky it was the perfect place to wake up for another day on (and off) the road.

    It was a 50/50 split between country roads and dirt and gravel roads, which was quite good as far as getting into the swing of things goes. The dirt was easy to ride on apart from the odd pothole here and there, which I always seem to hit despite my best efforts to miss them.

    The deeper gravel on the other hand was much more challenging. I soon discovered that cornering on gravel with the 90 is interesting. I told Ed that I was struggling with cornering as the bike kept sliding out, and he said 'Which end?' 'Back end' I replied. 'Back end?' he said, 'Normally it's the front end. 'Well maybe it was the front end... actually I think it's just the whole bike'. Ed then explained that you'd normally steer in to it and power through, but having only the former and none of the latter it would just have to be a case of teeter round and hope for the best.

    The bikes snaked around on the gravel and you really had to concentrate, but it was satisfying navigating it and finally reaching another section of pavement. They, whoever they are, often say that you have to have the lows to appreciate the highs, and the same goes for pavement and challenging off-road riding. It can be a bit of a love hate relationship, as when you're riding on deep gravel you're wishing for pavement, but once you get back on to the pavement you're wishing it was gravel again. The thing with gravel is you kind of need to let the bike do what it wants within reason, but reign it back in when needed. Despite our best efforts at holding on to the handlebars loosely we still managed to get a bit of forearm pump keeping the little bikes under control. We both managed to remain upright for the entire day though, despite a few major wobbles and me veering wildly off course at one point, due to a corner full of gullies and me managing to take the worst possible route, as always.

    We were whizzing along at one point when Ed came to an abrupt stop in front of me; enter... sand. Thankfully it was only a very short section of it, but it gave us a glimpse of what it'll be like when we get to the very sand sections; slow. With a whopping 8hp we just don't have enough power to get through it easily, but with a slight change of gearing and our usual smiles and determination I reckon we'll be ok. I mean, it'd be boring if it was easy now wouldn't it?

    Continued...

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    #77
  18. WanderOnAHonda

    WanderOnAHonda Been here awhile

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    So that was the day; hot southern sun, country roads, dirt roads, dirt and gravel roads, deeper gravel sections and the odd bit of sand thrown in for good measure. It was so dusty that I was absolutely covered by the end of the day, and had achieved by the end of it what we call in England an Essex tan, which is basically a very shit orange. Oh and I also got stung by the same bee three times. It went straight down my top and proceeded to sting me while I shouted ouch and help repeatedly until Ed came back to assist; extreme adventure right here folks ;)

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    #78
  19. WanderOnAHonda

    WanderOnAHonda Been here awhile

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    Day 9
    Friday 14th Aug

    Well we didn't get very far today, in fact we only did about 50 miles in the wrong direction so Ed could go 'walking in Memphis'! We had a late start due to a late night, as we couldn't find anywhere to camp. Everywhere had posted and private property signs, and when we knocked on someone's door to see if they knew anywhere we could camp (ie. can we please camp in your yard) we spent 10 minutes talking to a guy that wouldn't listen and kept repeating useless information to us over and over again until we finally managed to ride off. That's 10 minutes of our lives that we're never going to get back. We eventually found a campsite about 15 miles away, and it was worth every cent for the shower that I had that night and the following morning. I was absolutely covered in dust, and the thought of getting in to a sleeping bag all grimey and dusty wasn't very appealing.

    I also thoroughly enjoyed the cold air that was being blasted out outside the shower block.


    After a leisurely start to the morning we rode to a local town to pick up a new helmet for Ed, and I also got a replacement visor. I've been riding with what can only be described as privacy glass for the last 5 months, and apart from making all the colours seem dull, I've discovered that it's a nightmare when riding off-road later in the day when the sun is low, you can't see a thing! And because of all the dust you can't open it either, unless you want your mouth and eyes full of dust, which results in the same net result of not being able to see.

    We also gave the chains a good clean and oil, as they were looking on the rather dry and dusty side.

    Continued...

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    #79
  20. WanderOnAHonda

    WanderOnAHonda Been here awhile

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    It was a direct route up to Memphis, and we only rode as far as the city limits. Ed was happy with that, despite me saying that it really had to be walking the streets of Memphis, not just behind the sign of the city limits.

    We were only there for around five minutes or so, before we headed back down south to pick up the TAT again.

    As the sun was setting we decided to find somewhere to camp, and discovered that you could camp for free in the car park of a casino about 25 miles away in Tunica. It was really weird arriving there, there were so many bright lights and illuminated signs for multiple casinos and gaming halls, we'd never seen anything quite like it.

    After a quick bite to eat we followed the camping sign and set up our tent on some grass at the back, and fell asleep as soon as our heads hit the pillow.

    It was around 2am when we were woken up by the security supervisor, who told us that we couldn't camp there; it was for RV's only, no tents, despite there not being a single sign to tell us so. After saying that we had to pack up immediately she drove off, and Ed decided to follow her to see if we could at least wait until sunrise. No chance. Despite his best efforts there wasn't a hope in hell that they were going to let us stay. Ed said that the security supervisor was actually really nice and friendly, but it was her manager that had instructed her to remove us. And their excuse as to why we couldn't camp in a tent? Skunks and racoons. Yes that's right, the skunks and racoons are too dangerous. Ed pointed out that we'd wild camped in Alaska where there are bears and moose but it didn't make a difference. So there we were at 2.45am, half asleep and homeless.

    Thankfully though we managed to convince the RV park over the road to let us stay, and as it was now 3am the lady very kindly did it for half the price.

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    #80
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