Boy howdy, kin that Thump rite purty or what?
Had just gassed up in Crested Butte and took this picture:
I was texting it home to Sukirider aka Mrs Jaw, when I felt a "WHUMP", looked up just in time to see my front wheel disappearing under the bumper of a large truck. I had stopped cursing many years ago, but some old habits tend to surface in times of great stress; I didn't know that Granny Clampett and her Hispanic Jethro were in the truck, and I don't think it would have mattered; I cut loose with a string of expletives, she panicked and threw it into drive, yanking the bike forward and over, with me under it. Before I could free my self from the carnage, she had leaped from the truck and grabbed me in a bear hug, crying and apologizing profusely, which immediately took the fire from my cannon, but also prevented me from assessing the damage to the DR. Fixing the damage wasn't too difficult, calming granny down not so much, but the situation went from tongue scorching to "you Arkansas boys are just the nicest people!" Maybe we laid up a little karma that day...
The sticker above mine accurately depicts me reaction at seeing my front wheel disappearing into the angry maw of the Tundra:
As Fat Tire Week was happening in Crested, Kebbler Pass was closing, so we had to sneak past the barricades and skedaddle out of town; Kebbler is a fantastic mix if asphalt and dirt sections, on we began to really get our mojo working:
Until we got behind this tiny brained animal food trough wiper in his wee red truck, and got dusted out for the next 10 miles, but who's counting?
We stopped to regroup in Hodgkinvillopolis, a Uncle Rico-type wearing a shirt emblazoned with pot leaves, spots our Arkansas tags, hands us a business card and starts touting the quality of his herb. Bryan tells him that if he's not providing samples, he's just talking, so he quit talking and tucked his bud and left.
Ran into this guy at Hermit's rest on the North Rim of the Black, was riding an awesome old Gold Wing; I asked him which required more maintenance, the Wing or the 'stache, he said definitely the mustache. What a great guy, people like this are one of the reasons I ride.
The part of the story involving Fletch's rear tire shreddage has already been told, what wasn't recounted were the bear tracks I spotted in the creek bed. We have bears in Arkansas, and I've camped in the Ozarks and Ouachitas for years and not given them much thought, but the sight of these bad boys gave rise to a primal fear, and Uncle Jaw was not fixing to camp in this area. Little did I know that Corporal Goose, who shall appear later in the story, had shot the following picture a short distance away on Owl Creek Pass.
A quick note on my buddy Kyle; to say he is one of a kind is to say Miley Cyrus had issues.
He is the kind of guy to win a PT Cruiser by snorkeling through a swimming pool of creamed corn, finding the winning key in a promotional contest in which HE WASN'T EVEN ENTERED!!! I know it sounds like I have a man crush on the idiot, but he's one of my oldest friends, and a chance to ride with him and my son together is a priceless opportunity.
Luckily, he lives in Montrose, a short distance away, and had traded his precious little PT for a truck, so he quickly came to the rescue;
Fletch sprung for the pizza, we admired and fondled Kyle's amazing collection of guns, and we crashed hard in the basement, safe, for the time being, from the bears.
Gus-"here's to the sunny slopes of long ago"