Had some time off today, and hadn't done much riding since returning from our trip South, so...
Fired up the K100 and headed North- for a change. I really wanted to get up to Milheim, PA- to have a beer and lunch at the Elk Creek Cafe. HOWEVER, they are closed on Tuesdays. Tho I did ride up PA 325 (one of my favorite local roads), I didn't go as far up as Penn's Valley, turning left onto US 522, a stretch of it I hadn't ridden before.
First, I buffed up the K a bit, scrubbing off the the grunge from riding in foul weather on our trip to Western NC and back... She ain't a real beauty queen, but does clean up OK- she's like an older former super model- The faster she goes by, the younger she looks!
Anyway, I rode straight up river along 11/15, turning of at Liverpool onto PA 17.
Couple miles up the road is PA 325, where I turned right and headed out into the countryside. Didn't stop at all until I got to this church, where I got off to stretch a little.
It was a really great day!
Anyone who knows PA, knows there's lots of farming going on here. It not only makes for some wonderful views, I enjoy seeing all the equipment, the farms dotting the valleys, and the old barns. Here is a really nice vista looking more or less West- just off PA 35 & 325:
It amazes me what folks are willing to leave laying about. Here's a guy who not only has a bunch of junk- he has it all lined up so folks can SEE it all! With the big car shows being nearby -at Carlisle & Hershey- I bet people are stopping to try to buy some of these all the time. Since these have been here for years, pretty sure he ain't sellin'- just showing off, maybe? Who knows, but it makes for nice pictures.
Got his old junk house sitting here empty, too... Looks like the rhododendron bloom is about done here...
The light was fantastic, and the flowers looked great against the old wood... Sadly, I only had my phone along- please excuse the crappy iPhone pix!
Stopped a little farther up the road to take a minute in the woods...
This little trickle was drying up... There was a native trout trapped in one of the small pools there.
Out on 522, I was back to riding [West] down one of the impossibly long valleys in PA's Ridge & Valley region... at least that's what I call it. Further north, the mountains are more solid, further south, it's the Great Cumberland Valley (extension of the Shenandoah?) but in the middle part of Pennsylvania, there are a series of long ridges separated by awesome valleys that run for miles. And miles. E-W, you're up & down the valleys, N-S, it's over a ridge, cross a valley, back over another ridge, into another valley.... etc.
I rode 522 for quite a way, until I crossed US 322- where I found myself riding on a major section of the road- Looking out south, I saw the mountain, and knew the Juniata River was down there, too. Since I could see farms along the base of the ridge from my high vantage, I figured I could get down there and follow the ridge. I had no idea where I was going however, so eventually wound up back out on 522- but after it had choked back down to a two-lane. Meanwhile, I had a sweet little meander out in the boondocks.
I gassed up at one point along the way, and asked a local old timer if there was a hard road crossing the ridge nearby. Nope- I had to go all the way down 522 to Shade Gap, to get around the ridge, before I could cut back East & South towards home. Since I was on open two lane highway, I wasn't sweating it too much, and rolled along quickly in traffic, finally turning left to cross the Juinata.
Hopped back on the bike and went about a mile or so- and came up under this great railroad bridge over the river.
Finally, I made a left onto PA 641, heading back towards home- more or less. 641 intersects with PA 75, a couple ridges down- after also intersection PA 35- the next valley road South, which I couldn't get onto off of 522. There are lots of Amish folks who live in the big valley along PA 75. I sat at the store at 641 & 75, having a drink & a snack, watching the Amish World roll by. These particular Amish are fairly affluent- not like the top-o-the-heap Amish down around Lancaster County, but more so than the [so-called?] Nebraskan Amish up in Center County.
In the foreground of the photo below, you can see what Amish "motors" leak... I have bikes that leak oil, the horses leak.. well, YOU know.
All the local stores and whatnot here in Amish Country have hitching posts and parking lots, catering to all the customers...
A couple boys were commandeering this rig, toting a gas stove along. The Amish Culture does not use electricity, but they do use Propane for lighting and cooking purposes.
Riding back towards home after this stop, I went my typical route- PA 75 down to 274, over the ridge and down to 850, and rode along 850 back to the Susquehanna, then downriver to the house.
All in all, I'd had about a 200 mile ride. Thanks for riding along!