Day 22, Blue Ridge Parkway

September 27, 2017

471 miles…

Got on the road before 7 this morning to beat the traffic and find cooler temperatures. The ride from Knoxville to the Parkway took me through the Smokey Mountain State Park. The ride through there was exceptional. Lots of great, twisting roads. A little bit of traffic but not that much. The motorcycle has such acceleration that passing can be done very quickly. Continue reading “Day 22, Blue Ridge Parkway”

Day 21, Trucks, Trucks and More Trucks

September 26, 2017

510 miles…

6835 Miles total this trip…

All day on Interstate I-40 East. What a joy, just couldn’t believe the truck traffic. The economy must be in great shape with all goods moving on the highways. I can’t tell you how many times trucks quickly pulled into my lane as I was approaching them. It was a struggle to stay out of their blind spot and 2 of them tried to run me off the road. Makes for a anxious ride in the heat.

The only good thing that happened today was I finally found a dealer who could change my oil and a few other service items. I changed fluids just before I left but that was almost 7,000 miles ago. Service schedule is every 6,000 miles. The bike has 24,100 miles since I purchased it just 15 months ago. I was going to have to do it myself in the hotel parking lot tonight. Not a problem but disposing the waste oil would be tricky. If you think car dealerships are expensive, you ain’t seen nothin’. Oil change with filter, 2 spark plugs and oil change for drive shaft was $240. None of it is hard to get to either.

Nashville was a mess. Major traffic jams everywhere. There’s just too many major Interstates intersecting in that town. It’s really a disaster. It was 95 degrees in the stop and go traffic. My riding jacket doesn’t vent very well when stopped. Plus I was wearing my helmet of course. Good thing I switched to my Kevlar jeans today.

Not much else to report. I’m in a Best Western in Knoxville tonight and plan to get an early start tomorrow hoping for cooler temps and less traffic. Should be on the Blue Ridge Parkway by mid morning. This will be 180 degrees from the riding I’ve done for the past 3 days. 45 mph speed limit for 400 miles. Hopefully the scenery will be as good as advertised.

If things go well, I should be in Dayton by Friday afternoon. We’ll see…

 

Day 20, Hot Interstate, all Day

Took off this morning with a threat of rain so I put on the rain gear. I was able to outrun the rain but couldn’t outrun the heat. My plan is to hotfoot it to the Appalachians as quick as possible and get on the Blue Ridge Parkway. That means rolling down the Interstates. Ugh… I wanted to head Northeast so I could go through Missouri but my Garmin got confused and took me across I 40 all the way across Arkansas. Maybe it wasn’t the Garmin that got confused, but I have been taking my Vitamin D every day. Continue reading “Day 20, Hot Interstate, all Day”

Day 19, Route 66

September 24, 2017

456 miles…

Took off on I-40 and pulled off at virtually every Route 66 turnoff for over 400 miles. My day ended in Elk City, Oklahoma, still on I-40. The scene through New Mexico was really bleak. Nearly every business was shut down and most of them were totally dilapidated. There’s some pictures in the today’s gallery. Things picked up a little bit in Texas but there were long stretches with no sign of the old Route 66. I stumbled onto the famous Cadillac Ranch by accident. Continue reading “Day 19, Route 66”

Day 18, Rest Day

I woke up still feeling rotten from yesterday. I didn’t sleep well. I decided I needed a rest and booked the room for another night. I like the room and the location. I went back to bed and slept ’til 10. Then took a nap in the afternoon. Then went for a long walk and finished up in the sauna. It’s been a exciting 2 1/2 weeks but I guess a bit tiring. I’m feeling much better this evening.

It’s off to Route 66 in the morning heading East.

Day 17, New Mexico

September 22, 2017

278 miles…

5332 miles total trip

I woke up with a hangover. It was those damn Margaritas. I was planning to make a loop up the Rockies in the San Juan National forest. My research showed it to be one of the top 3 ride in the state so I was excited. After the 180 mile ride, I would then head south to New Mexico. Continue reading “Day 17, New Mexico”

Day 16, Off to Durango and Another State

September 21, 2017

343 Miles…

After a reasonable nights sleep in the tent I was off to Colorado. I headed east on rt. 160 into Cortez, Colorado and then into Durango. The ride through the Arizona desert was really cool. So many rock formations and mountains to see. Each area seems to have it’s own unique color of rock. I was struck by the openness of the state. There is vast areas with virtually no evidence of civilization. Small little towns with 1 gas station and maybe a small motel every 60-100 miles. After a long, hot, and windy day, I pulled into the Best Western. Continue reading “Day 16, Off to Durango and Another State”

Day 15, Sensory Overload

September 20, 2017

361 miles…

As I begin to write this post, I’m sure I’ll run out of superlatives before I’m finished. The day was, breathtaking, awesome, inspiring, incredible, etc.

I mentioned yesterday that I was going through the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in the morning. The Bureau of Land Management describes it, “Grand Staircase-Escalante remains the largest national monument in the United States – spanning 1.9 million acres of America’s public lands. A landscape roughly the size of Delaware, the Monument was the last place in the continental United States to be mapped.” Continue reading “Day 15, Sensory Overload”

Day 14, Back in Business

September 19, 2017

206 miles…

Got out of the dealer around noon and took off for Torrey, Utah. I planned to do a trip through Grand Staircase-Escalante National Park the next morning. A guy at the dealership told me I shouldn’t miss it. Roads to Torrey were quite scenic and I arrived about 6:00. It was also quite windy which isn’t a bunch of fun as you ride down the road getting pushed all over the place. Fortunately, I made a reservation about halfway because I began to see No Vacancy signs. I booked a room at the Broken Spur Inn right in Torrey. Continue reading “Day 14, Back in Business”

Day 13, “Adventures suck when you’re having them.” ― Neil Peart, Rush

September 18, 2007

349 Miles…

4133 Total Miles

Spent Sunday doing some sight seeing with Chris. We drove up to Elk Mountain. Saw tons of wildlife and were blessed with semi clear skies and some beautiful views. The ranches in the area are massive with lots of cattle, Pronghorn Antelope and other creatures. The top of the mountain was cold and snowing but the views were special. Continue reading “Day 13, “Adventures suck when you’re having them.” ― Neil Peart, Rush”