This little trip has been in the planning stages for several years. My Harley riding cousin Byron, has been wanting to get his Uncle up to see Mount Rushmore and has been urging me to do this for a long time. The obstacle was the horrible, flat, boring, windswept fly over states of Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska. I have spent many hours plotting a route across these states trying to find something interesting. Turns out those "fly over states" are pretty darned wonderful. I was ignorant of how wonderful those states really are. In the background I can hear Jason Aldean singing Fly Over States... Like all Redfish Trips this one started out with bike maintenance. Both FJRs got fresh oil and filters, Pop got new tires and I serviced my clutch lever and bled/flushed my clutch fluid. I also found a huge rat nest in Pop's air filter which got cleaned. Pop's bike waiting on tires: My clutch lever and bushing: My faithful Garmin Zumo 660 died when I tried to update it. No idea what went wrong but I had to quickly install a brand new Zumo 396 for the trip. We met at Pop's for a pre-dawn breakfast and were rolling right after good daylight. We got on the Interstate at Denham Springs, LA and jetted across the Mississippi River so I could get us on two lane backroads ASAP. We traveled WNW to Toledo Bend Reservoir where we crossed Pendleton Bridge into Texas. I was a little bit out of my way but Pop had requested lunch at Martin's Corner in Milam, TX. I have to thank Hppants for showing us this wonderful place on another ride. http://s1064.photobucket.com/user/andrewlewis1/media/IMG_0461_zpsfjzfdmcg.jpg.html][/URL] It was worth the extra time. Very Good Stuff. I had parked the FJR atop a grassy hilltop due to lack of parking. With my recently honed dual sport skills my departure was straight down that hill with my cousin right behind me on his Harley. Of course there were problems. One issue was that a very dear cousin of mine from Sacramento CA was somewhere in Texas and we were trying to intercept one another and at least say hello and swap hugs. The other was that somewhere in Texas was the Awesome Gixxerjasen who was also on an intercept mission. How was I going to coordinate 3 seperate trajectories when I can barely navigate my way across my kitchen? Problem number 2 took care of itself. Gixxerjasen was able to find me, catch me and ride with me until after dark. God Bless that man, he went waaaay out of his way just to ride with me for a few boring hours. Friends like that... Jasen and Pop, Jasen doing his best no-smile-Redfish imitation: The flat but fast Texas roads: Problem number one got solved when my cousin and her husband were able to get in front of us and we met at a gas station in Commerce, TX. We spent about an hour in the hot Texas sun but it was great to see them again. Family that is Far Away is still Family. Aaaand...the first of many, many sections of Road Work we would encounter. This one sucked, we almost had head on with another vehicle because I got confused about what lane was open and what lane was closed. My fault entirely. At least there was lots of loose gravel. A supper at a Dickey's BBQ a few hundred yards from our motel that night.