Trans Am Trail From TN to Nevada on a KLR

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by olegmc66, Jan 10, 2009.

  1. olegmc66

    olegmc66 old chevy

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    NC
    I bought a new helmet in Bartlesville since old faitful was a little windy with the increased wind in OK. Spent the day and another night in Bartlesville just poking around, and letting it dry out a little from the tornado the night before. It had come up the path of the trail from the west.

    Starting to get flat outside Bartlesville, headed for Alva, OK.
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    Okie water crossing, nice stuff.
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    Had both pavement and dirt/gravel, about 70% dirt/gravel. This is the first time seeng the flatland like this for me, amazing.
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    Green and Flat.
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    With a few rolls here and there, they would soon smooth out.
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    A little color thrown in. Walmart special tent, bag and selflatable roll now atop my bag.
    Say what you will, but on the trail, Walmart is always not far away
    and stuff is cheap. This combo serverd me great. I guess if I had
    spent more time planning I may have gotten into the higher dollar, lighter stuff.
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    End of day 2 in OK at Alva, OK. That pool looks good. What a wimp.


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    Notice I took my windshield off. For my height, 6'2", I found I got less wind turbulence with it off.

    Wind noise is a concern out here when you are riding all day long, day after day.
    I had earplugs in which helps alot.

    Can't remember the name of the motel, maybe Holiday Motel, but if you see
    the big yellow flower stop in. The guy was great, I left my phone charger in Bartlesville,
    he had a drawer full on ones left there, found a match for mine and gave it to me.
    Local guy.

    OK, tomorrow on to Liberal Kansas, which is the only big town around
    and it is right on the OK border.

    Bill
    #21
  2. olegmc66

    olegmc66 old chevy

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    NC
    OK, here we go loop de li to Liberal, KS.


    Somewhere west of Alva, OK, headed west.
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    Still headed west, at a different spot on the trail :)
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    An ole International contemplates 3 different size bushhogs.
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    And 3 ole Chevys
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    Well up to now me and the trusty steed had not ridden thru any mud at all except at the water crossings. That was about to change.
    Guess it was left over from the tornado.
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    Some hills and pipe sheds.
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    OOPS. It happens so fast, you know? The first of 3 spills on the trail.
    Each one was harder than the last. This one was pretty soft.
    Just be aware if you are going alone on a late model KLR, it takes
    all you can do to get it up since it is so top heavy. Side bags
    would help I guess and not let it go down so flat.
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    Dries out a little. This is nice, not a cloud in the sky, but I am
    now trying to be a little more attentive.
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    OK up the panhandle into Liberal Kansas for the night. This is
    nice town with lots of stuff going on. Had a nice meal and a few
    drinks at the local bars, then turned in with visions of New Mexico
    in my head.

    Return here later for the run out of the panhandle into New Mexico
    and up the Trinidad Colorado for the next night.

    Bill
    #22
  3. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Andover, N.J.
    :1drink
    #23
  4. Kyler

    Kyler Geezer

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,848
    Location:
    Just north of Keedysville, MD
    when do you go? what month? My brother and I are doing just TN & MS next year - can't the time off for the whole thing.
    #24
  5. olegmc66

    olegmc66 old chevy

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    78
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    NC
    I was on the trail from about mid april to mid may.
    The guy in the shop in Trinidad said, man you're early. I guess I was because I had to go around some of Co because of snow. But it worked out that it was not too hot in the desert. I think. Docking Pilot said it was best to wait till sept, but man it is just hard to wait that long.
    #25
  6. Kyler

    Kyler Geezer

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Just north of Keedysville, MD
    In other words, a April/May trip in just TN & MS would be nearly perfect?
    #26
  7. Seth S

    Seth S Will _____ for _____

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2004
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    sanity?
    I concur Devils Den is a fantastic place to spend the night or a couple of days and it is very close to the trail. I seem to remember the ride into the park was a little sketchy but the park was a little oasis.


    Its always fun to remember those roads...perhaps next year I can ride it again.
    #27
  8. olegmc66

    olegmc66 old chevy

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    NC
    Yeah late April, anytime in May would be great TN/MS
    I would try to time it with the dogwood blooms
    One good way to get to Jellico from MD is hook up to VA #58 to
    Middlesboro KY, then there is a very windy stretch thru the mountains
    from there to Jellico, route 90 is the one in TN, not sure what the
    KY # is

    bill
    #28
  9. olegmc66

    olegmc66 old chevy

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    NC
    Left Liberal Kansas, out the panhandle towards NM.


    Ole Chevy basking in the sun beside his younger brother.

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    My first encounter with sand. You can see where I paddled
    thru.
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    Ole Dodge just hanging out near the NM border.
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    Into New Mexico!
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    Hang on, I think I see a mountain.
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    Man this is getting good.
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    If I had to pick one ride out of the trip, this road would be it.
    I think Docking Pilot said this also. Maybe it was just seeing
    the hills again after the flatlands, but I wish I had taken
    more pics, I think I was just in a stupor is why I didnt.
    Cant explain it.
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    Snap out of it!
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    Here is the only time I really got lost on the trip, altho I did take alot of
    wrong turns. The rollchart and map said hang a left, and this road was
    at the right milage. But down a few miles it went thru a gate, then
    another gate. I should have known right then that something was
    wrong. But I kept saying just go a little further. Turns out I went
    to the next turn and it was not there, only thing it took me about
    5 miles to find out. But, it was one of the most beautiful rides
    of the trip, just like the one I had just done. It was a ranch I guess
    and I just kept getting deeper into a long ravine, with all kind
    of game, elk or moose? rabbits, etc.
    And when I got back and made the turn where it started there
    was a sign about a mile up the road "Biker Trail", that I have seen
    on Docking Pilot's report. Oh well.
    Just be aware that if you get here and have to go thru a gate that
    you would have to open, turn back and get the next road up.
    (Unless you have time to have a beautiful ride I assume
    trespassing on someone's property).

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    Here I am after taking the correct left turn to the top of the
    switchbacks.
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    After the swithbacks, heading towards Colorado.
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    I thiink that may be a Colorado mountain out there.
    Close to the CO border in NM. What a day?
    Guess I will have to do some riding in the dark to get to
    Trinidad, thanks to my little detour.
    But it was worth it.
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    On the acutal NM/CO border on
    the trail, you go across a cattleguard thru a
    fence, then ride along the CO side of the fence for awhile. Cool.
    On up to Trinidad CO for the night, I end up staying another night
    just checking it out. There is a cool old movie downtown that
    a guy has renovated. If you get a chance and it is still there
    support it. He was struggling against the new cinaplex.

    Tomorrow will post the first day in Co.

    Bill
    #29
  10. manfromthestix

    manfromthestix Lost in Space Supporter

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Lexington, Virginia
    Very cool ride report! I've spent most of my life in New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming with trips to surrounding states riding roads like that. Now I live in Virginia and think it would be a hoot to ride "home" on this route!

    Doug
    #30
  11. SAFETYFIFTH

    SAFETYFIFTH Let's Rip Lip!

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Arkansas
    awesome
    #31
  12. schismatic

    schismatic Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Oddometer:
    195
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    great rr! looking forward to more!
    #32
  13. Nukem

    Nukem Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2008
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Peterborough, Ontario
    Awesome RR, come on give me more, I need my fix. How long did the trip take you??
    #33
  14. Utah Bones

    Utah Bones Gas X ready!

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2008
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    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Great ride!:D
    #34
  15. maquette

    maquette Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2004
    Oddometer:
    235
    Location:
    Oriental, NC
    Where are you in NC?
    #35
  16. Brent4ADV

    Brent4ADV Enjoying empty roads...

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,006
    Location:
    B'ham, AL
    Great ride report. It's interesting to see a ride report from the TAT where there was virtually no planning. I'm tuned in to see the rest. :lurk
    #36
  17. TimberWolf

    TimberWolf enslaved by employer

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2008
    Oddometer:
    413
    Location:
    Randleman, NC
    :lurk
    #37
  18. BlueBuell

    BlueBuell Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Oddometer:
    421
    Thank you! I am really enjoying your report. I like your casual and low stress approach to the trip. I was relaxing as I read it! The pix of the old trucks are really cool. I like seeing them all rusty and faded, I used to have a 51 chevy.
    Four of us are picking up the TAT in OK from Austin, TX and hope to get to Utah. We have the last 2 weeks in June, I hope we can do some good passes in CO!
    Cheers
    #38
  19. Bob

    Bob Formerly H20Pumper

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    Location:
    Corral de Tierra CA, Ketchum ID
    Great pics, love those old trucks!
    #39
  20. olegmc66

    olegmc66 old chevy

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    NC
    Well, here I am in Colorado. I first was only going to Tennessee, then I thought what would Oklahoma look like?
    I have to turn back now.
    But riding back would be a long way.
    And it would be backtracking. And this is exciting.
    My granddaughters in California are calling me now wanting me to keep coming. The whole family is telling me to keep going.
    But Colorado you might think is a western state, but it is really only half way to the coast.

    I need a new knobby if I am going to climb mountains.
    Decisions, I dont like to make em anymore.
    So I figured I go one more day to see some mountains and then decide.
    I could then ride to Denver and fly back, in the back of my mind.
    Maybe sell the bike on ebay.

    Anyway, heck with it I wanted to see the mountains of Colorado. Decide later.

    First day of the trail after Trinidad. The mountain looks imposing.
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    What a morning. Glad I decided to keep going.
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    Getting Closer. Nice riding surface.
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    Getting in amongst them now.
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    This is so nice, but is that rain? Haven't had a drop the entire trip?
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    Now why was I looking at the scenery and hit that rut?
    Down she goes. Broke the right front fairing. So that's why
    Frank put on the side guards. Bungee it on the top,
    maybe some JB Weld can put it back.

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    My first snow. Cool. Have not seen any of that in awhile being from Eastern NC (Rocky Mount). Check out the broken fairing.
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    Uh Oh. It's getting a little narrower.
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    Winter Wonderland. And it's snowing. Excuse my excitement but
    we just dont get it where I'm from and I have not been
    skiing in a while.
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    Clears up later. Man look at those snowcaps.
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    In amoungst again.
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    So glad I kept going.
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    Deer weren't afraid of me.
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    The road ahead looks promising.
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    Gettin up there.
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    Note to Self: Come back here in the fall and see what these
    Aspens look like then.
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    Wow! Going down into Salida is just a nice as Sam said it would be.
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    I decide to keep going for another day since today was so nice.
    Pick it back up tomorrow.

    Bill
    #40