I am about a month out from departure to Virginia and eventually Michigan & Canada. I just changed the oil and will do so one more time prior to leaving. I am guessing we will be traveling roughly 3,000 on this trip so that last oil change should last until I get home.
RTM has ordered new Avon Tyres for me. I put nearly 8,000 miles on this set and could not be happier. They are just great tires. I love the way they grip when cornering and they gave me about 3,000 more miles than the OEM tires.
Thanks to Sue & Steve at Hudson Valley Motorsports Parts (hvmp.com) for my new bar-end weights. Riding the Blast is, well, a blast. However it is a single cylinder “thumper” and definitely has vibration. The HVMP bar-end weights not only look great, they significantly reduce hand/wrist fatigue.
I have been riding every day to work which means more traffic laden roads (think lots of clutch work). Where my fingers used to get sore, numb and tingly – NO MORE! Thumper is even considering a set for his new FJR 1300. If you ride, you should have a set of HVMP bar-end weights – they will make your ride more comfortable and your hands will thank you.
Hhhmmmm, can’t wait to hit the road!
Spent the last couple of days riding around south central Michigan. Saturday we visited Grand Ledge and went to see The Ledges. These are rock formations that history says used to be part of a huge underwater cavern system.
Met Billy & Marty there. These two guys have a passion and dream themselves. Just as it was my destiny to ride from Florida to Michigan on my little 500cc bike, they are on a quest to play all the "Disc Golf" courses in Michigan. In case you have never heard of this sport, we hadn’t, it is golf by way of a Frisbee. The rules are the same as golf, each hole has a par and you score just like in golf. They are serious players – even used different discs of varying weights, just as you would choose a club. Hey Phil – wanna change your game around a little? Thumper said he would go disc golfing with ya!! You will see photos of Billy & Marty in the photo album.
Then it was off to Ron & Val Clewley’s for rest and relaxation. They have a beautiful home that is situated at the edge of a cornfield. This is my definition of heaven. Peaceful and beautiful – we truly enjoyed the company. Ron, the Master Griller, cooked up burgers and dogs and everybody brought a dish. Unfortunately the photographer was too busy doing other things and she neglected to do her job. I am sorry gang – we had a great time, but I have no photos to prove it. Thanks for your hospitality - and for having us over.
Sunday we met up with my sister Sherrie her husband Eric again. Eric and fellow riders from The Bloodbrothers, Bob & Melissa, Chris & Carry took us on a great ride through the country and then on to lunch.
Later we were privileged to have my niece and nephew along for a ride. John boarded Thumpers ride and Elainnie jumped on back with me (brave girl) and off we went to Thornapple Lake. It was a great way to end the evening.
Monday we head north to see my older brother Mike and catch up with his better half Karen and son Ryan and his girlfriend Ashley. Then off to Mackinac Bridge and the U.P.
Wednesday June 14, 2006 8:50 PM
We have had a couple of very busy days. Spent Monday morning just meandering north towards Clare and Farwell, where my brother Mike lives. Made it to Clare and was lucky enough to get my nephew Ryan on the phone and hook up for pizza.
Ryan was very knowledgeable about local history and when we asked about a good hotel he was quick to suggest the Motel Dougherty. Rumor has it that during the days of the Purple Gang they used to hang out at the Motel Dougherty and that there are tunnels under the motel used as escape routes. Ryan even had a friend in school who lived in a house which had one of these tunnels that connected to the Dougherty.
After relaxing in the hot tub we rode out to Mike’s house. He lives in a beautiful home in Farwell. While deciding on dinner the conversation turned to deer and wouldn’t you know it, just then a little doe walked right into the street in front of the house. I decided it was time to go back to the motel and park the bike.
Mike & Karen picked us up and we met up with Ryan & Ashley for a great dinner at Yackies Riverside Grill.
Tuesday we got an early start – we were both excited about our destination –
It was awesome! First we stopped for a pre-crossing photo-op and then it was off to ride the bridge. I had always dreamed of riding a motorcycle across the
Odometer: 17,303, just about 2,424 miles since leaving Wesley Chapel.
Back across the river we stopped at the Dixie Saloon in
At the local IGA we ran into Phillip & Paul who where riding to Milwaukee. In a most interesting journey – they were going to put their bikes on a ferry which goes across Lake Michigan and lands them right in Milwaukee – how cool!
At JR’s Tailgate we met Ruth and Calvin. They are there on his custom made motorcycle, which he gladly allowed me to sit on for a photo-op.
Wednesday we headed down the coast on M119 and M22 – through
Tomorrow we head back to
Special hello, hugs and kiss to Gaynell McKenzie - Thumps Mom & Hapi
We miss all our buddies back home – Trent, Marisol, Ben, Amy, Phil, Tonia, Kevin, Toshia, Clayton, Bobby, Dale, Ralph, Amanda, Shea, Shelly & all the Bloated Goat Gang, Glenn & Kelly & all our friends at Hog Pen – we will be home soon!
Saturday June 17
Friday we rode all day. We made it from
The last part of the day was on
Today we will be heading generally south on
66 ends in
Plan is to be home by Monday or Tuesday.
Sending a hello out to Wanda, Allen and to Crystal and Scarlett at Bloated Goat Saloon!
Hi Hi Seka & Bob Elliott
Hi Mom, Hi Dad
Hello to Eric, Brian & Tom at RTM - will need to see you when I return!
Monday June 19, 2005
Yeah – I know here it is just two o’clock and we have already called it a day. Many reasons. We rode about 250 miles, the rains were catching up to us and heck, we just wanted to spend one last night pampering ourselves in the hot tub.
It was a great journey. The ride down
Sunday found us among some of the most congested areas we have traversed so far due to the tourist factor. Cherokee, NC is beautiful, but very crowded. We decided against hanging out and continued on down the road.
By late afternoon we had made it half way through
This morning we headed south on 129. This road, heading north is the same road that Trent & Marisol will be riding come Tuesday – Deals Gap – where 129 crosses from North Carolina into Tennessee, The Dragon – 318 curves in 11 miles – have fun guys!
Tomorrow this trip ends but the memories of the journey live on in our minds continuously as we plan and prepare for our next adventure.
When it is all said and done….
The Buell performed magnificently. The only problem, a minor one, was when the carb boot came off and needed to have the clamp tightened down.
Departing odometer reading: 14,879
Final odometer reading: 19,100
Total trip mileage: 4,221
And I am ready to do it all over again.
To all those we met on the road – thanks for the memories, meeting new friends like you is what makes motorcycle travel so much fun.
Thanks for hanging with me. Keep a watch on the site, you never know where I’ll be next,
On every trip there is a guardian angel - on this trip it was
Terry & his Wife!
We met Terry two and a half weeks ago as we were preparing to
depart for Michigan. Tonight Terry & his Wife informed the desk
clerk I had inadvertently switched my ignition too far and left the
running lights on. Thanks you two for your thoughtfulness