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Showing posts from June, 2015

GOE XIX, Day 11: I Can Tell By the Weather - We Are Close to Home

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Kasey's Birthday, Monday, June 29th, 2015

Our final day, the one that would carry us home, started out familiar in the that the air was cool, but the sun was actually shining. We grabbed some breakfast at the hotel, and then packed up to hit the road. We were making our way from north of Pittsburgh down to US 40, the National Road.

We would make our way to US 40 in Cambridge, Ohio. While waiting at a red light, I noticed a cafe and deli next to each other, and an empty parking space right out front. After getting my riding partner's approval, I backed the bike into the space, and we settled into Guernsey's Cafe for lunch.

Up until this point, we were dry, but the skies were turning more and more to Indiana skies as we sat and ate. The grayed up, and then started to let loose with some rain. Lunch was good, and it was time to hit the road, and the wet roads. Before we left town, and connected with US 40, we filled the tank.

The rain increased as we drove the 80 miles to get…

GOE XIX, Day 10: The Wet Journey Home

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Sunday, June 28th, 2015

So our first stop wasn't even out of the town of Norwich. We were tired of wet feet, and decided to invest in new footwear, especially some that are waterproof. Kasey also bought some gloves. My old boots, no longer holding water out, went into the trash, and I wore the new boots out of the store.

We braved through the wet weather, with the hope of heading west, and the rain heading east, we would drive out of it. Well that happened, once in a while, and in waves. I use my phone as my GPS with an app from Sygic, but I had the first part of the route memorized. We did out ride my memory. After a stop, I got it out, and decided to let it get wet, since it would be better than being lost.

During a dry stretch, and when we were getting back on the route, we hit Monkey Run Road. It was hard packed gravel, better than some chip and seal roads I have been on. It did turn to dirt and mud, but we made it through.

We made our way back to Route 6 through Pennsylvania,…

GOE XIX, Day 8: The Short Day

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Friday, June 26th, 2015

Well, the first day back home would be just a short hop for Kasey and I. After a brief visit, Kevin and Virginia would head on down the road. We started out making our way down 9N, and through a few New York Towns. The first stop would be at yet another former home of my favorite riding partner. It wasn't a place she had fond memories, or lived for a long time. This was more a place where she lived, not a home.

After a few photos, we headed back out south and west through the empire state. The route to Norwich would take us on all back roads. Before we got there, it was approaching lunch time. Just in the nick of time in Oneonta, we arrived at yet another Friendly's. We decided what the heck, pulled in and parked for the noon meal.

It was not many more miles before we entered Norwich, and made our way through town to Kasey's Grandmother. The 90 plus year old woman didn't come to the door, or out the door until we stepped up on the front porch. T…

GOE XIX, Day 7: Never Say Good Bye to Fort Ticondoroga

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Thursday, June 25th, 2015

So we all started out as a big group, but that didn't last long. The last part of the group, including Kasey and I at the end, the trikes, and Ray from the Virginia Chapter were all left behind. Now the last person in the group ahead is supposed to wait for us at the next turn. Problem was, we didn't get to the last turn.

Ray was leading, and took off the Interstate about two exits too early. Then we went north on the main road through Lake George, missing Fast Eddie waiting at the exit. Eventually, we ended up back on the Interstate, heading north, with Fast Eddie's Daughter leading Ray, the trikes, and The Black Pearl.

I guess when your nickname is Fast Eddie, and you are his daughter, he probably taught you how to drive, then you learn to drive fast. Running along the highway, we and the trikes got further and further behind. After a long stretch, we exited to SR 74. There was also a sign pointing to the Fort. Ray and Eddie's daughter were …

GOE XIX, Day 6: Games, Poker Ride and a Poolside Banquet

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Wednesday, June 24th, 2015

Wednesday Morning already of the rally, first on the schedule: Biker Games! Before that was a trip to get Dunkin Donuts. They were had at the picnic tables outside our hotel door, and we had company. As things started up for the Biker Games, Kasey wasn't feeling well, so I missed most of the games up in the room with her. I did see my brother compete for the first time in the slow ride, but he didn't make it past his first round. Neither have I. We did have an addition, a Trike Only Game of joust.

Next on tap was the Ralph Barnard Memorial Poker Run. It is a fixture of our Gathering, and has been for nearly 15 years. Hard to believe it has been almost that long since I was able to share the road with Ralph. I didn't know him nearly long enough.

We exited the hotel, and started north on Interstate 87. It was only for a few miles, then an exit to head east on State Road 149. At Fort Ann, we took SR 4 north. Near Whitehall, we veered off onto SR 22,…

GOE XIX, Day 5: Return to the Blue Ben

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Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015

So the gathering is under way!! Actually, like every year, it kind of started the night before, as we greeted people who showed up after us. That is a rarity, as we usually end up the last one to join the gathering.

So Kasey and I got registered, and the rest of the afternoon is open for a free ride. We needed to be back by five to join the group for the dinner ride. First off was stop at the closest Best Buy, as I needed some new SD Cards to record the GoPro Footage. We headed south on the Interstate, and then through Glens Falls. Kasey lived her in younger years, and her father worked at the big paper company in town.

We made the errand, and then began our journey to Vermont. We left Saratoga Springs on Louden Road. It was a nice, wooded and winding road through some pretty nice homes. This road spilled us out on State Road 29, and we continued east. We took a bit of a jog in Schuyleryville, and then continued on SR 29.

At Greenwich, we peeled south on SR 37…

GOE XIX, Day 4: Used Meat and the Adirondacks

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Monday, June 22nd, 2015

Time for the last leg of the journey to get to Lake George and Gathering of Eagles. The last 250 miles started near Rochester, and with a tour of the town. First off, I went to adjust something and hit the engine kill switch. It took a second to see what I did. Enough time for Kasey to remind me of my talk of retiring The Black Pearl and replacing her.

My brother, Kevin, was in the lead, and that lead started with a bit of a loop around the town of Irondequoit. We didn't got through the bad areas, at least. Finally we got back on State Road 104, and heading east.

The weather would be fairly clear, but we would still find lots of water, I guess it is just the way the trip is going to go. We were heading to Lake George, so I guess we were destined for the water. Near Hannibal we got onto SR 3, and then SR 49 to head east and down to Oneida Lake. Yep, more water.

A few more miles down the road and we pulled our two wheeled chariots into Rome, New York. I guess…

GOE XIX, Day 3: Rodney's, Niagara Falls, and the Anti-Menu

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Father's Day, June 21st, 2015

We started out father's day cool, but dry. We would take it! We fueled up with the complementary breakfast at the Comfort Inn, and then fueled the bikes at the gas station across the street from the hotel. The real part of the ride started north on State Road 60.

We then turned  right, and headed north and east along Lake Erie, on SR 127. We got a few good views of the lake, but thick air made it hard to see to far out. Also, lots of houses were dotted along the shoreline. As we neared Buffalo, the homes started going upscale, although, every once in a while, an older house still stood.

We spilled back out on State Road, and after a short jaunt, we arrived at Rodney's Restaurant, and empty parking lot. We found out that they don't open until noon, we had arrived at eleven, since that is when their website said they opened. So we headed back down the road to a city park on the beach. We still couldn't see to far across the water, until …

GOE XIX, Day 2: No Denying Lunch

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Saturday, June 20th, 2015

I would like to say we started out the day bright and early. It was early, but the skies were not bright, and we were not the most alert. Breakfast at the Comfort Inn, and hearing the engine fire up would help that.

We headed north out of Van Wert, and then veered to the east on 224. Or dining partners from last night, Brent and Callie, were heading east on Highway 30, which runs parallel, but further south. The bit south would be a big difference. Over us, the clouds were a deary, yet light shade of gray. As we looked south, the skies drew darker, that odd blue and gray combination. You could also see the softness below, the curtain of rain that was falling.

224 is a pretty major road, so we only ran into one issue with water. It had rained quite a bit in the area, and in fact, this was one road that hadn't been closed because of rain. We did hit one detour around flooding.

The CB Radios that my brother and I used to use to communicate have not been work…

GOE XIX, Day 1: There's Something in the Air

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Friday, June 19th, 2015

There was something in air...moisture. Lots of moisture falling from the sky. So we were starting this journey to Gathering of Eagles, GOE, with lots of liquid sunshine falling from the sky. We were suited up, and started out heading north on State Road 39 towards Lebanon, Indiana.

In Lebanon we made our way east on State Road 32 to the town of Jolietville, and turned north on Mule Barn Road. The rain continued, not a hard rain, but it was steady, and soaking. We continued east on SR 47 until it turns into 236th Street into Strawtown, Indiana. We turned north on SR 37, and continued for a long distance.

Our first stop came just bit north of Elwood. Since I didn't start with a full tank, we fueled up, had some snacks and drinks, and then made our way back into the rain. Not sure if it was the break or not, but it felt like it was raining harder.

State Road 37 comes to end in Huntington, Indiana, so we took SR 9 north from there. Cambridge City would be our n…

Breaking Back Into Things

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Friday, June 5, 2015

Both Kasey and I whittled the morning and early afternoon away trying to get things we needed to get done, well, done. We both had mentioned something about a ride, but it didn't seem like wither one of us were pushing the issue. It is one of things that doesn't happen unless you make it a priority and make it happen. I think at one point, Kasey figured I was going without her, so we had both get our things done.

One of things we did need to check out was the new pads I put on Kasey's Floorboards. She had gone a long time without, and I finally found a couple of options, and got to work on getting new rubber on there, so her heels were not resting on metal.

We started out in Danville, and headed north out of town on State Road 39. Across the bridge, we beared to the left to get on 236 headed for North Salem. This is another one of those stretches I have been on numerous times, so I get the feel of the bike for that day. I have to say the new front tire…