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Old 06-08-2013, 09:27 PM   #31
ABee OP
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Joined: May 2013
Location: North Georgia
Oddometer: 140
Spot Tracker

RideDualSport, AZ Tom, Ks-Rydr, Gunslinger, Bob, huzar, Ferguson Valley- thanks for the comments.

JackB1- I am looking forward to taking you up on that!

MUS- Facebook? What's that?

socalhodaka- Cool, you have one of the Toad's siblings!

prsdrat- That will become my new slogan when I arrive at my destination at the end of the day: "Hodaka esta aqui!"

TomW- Careful, our I will tell everyone how you land a Cessna!

In case anyone is interested, you can track my trip progress on my Spot device page at the address below. You will note that I am a couple of days behind in my ride report posts, but hope to get caught up soon. I am currently in Ozark, AR, about to cross into OK.

http://share.findmespot.com/shared/f...GYqt3uO1LZBNJv
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Old 06-09-2013, 08:06 AM   #32
TomW
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABee View Post
...TomW- Careful, our I will tell everyone how you land a Cessna!
Hey, we walked away. Thanks for noticing the 2,000 FPM rate of descent.

Cheerios,
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:44 PM   #33
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Day Five


When Kudzu Attacks! Near Rudyard, MS
Sardis, Mississippi to Beebe, Arkansas.
I was looking forward to the sight of the Mississippi River today as it would symbolize the “gateway to the West” on this trip. The roads to the west of Sardis soon had me back on the dirt, and the Toad and I soon found ourselves winding through fields taken over by Kudzu, an invasive vine that was once imported from Asia in an effort to control erosion and supposedly provide feed for cattle. As it turned out, the cattle did not like Kudzu all that much. The vine thrived in the hot and humid climate of the south, and you will see sections of the southern landscape that are completely overrun with the stuff. Abandoned houses, barns, and anything else stationary in its path gets covered up. When I first moved to the South from California, I saw Kudzu for the first time along roads in Mississippi. I said to my wife Donna, a Southerner, “How nice, they plant ivy here to landscape the roads.” She just looked at me and rolled her eyes.
The bridge crossing the Mississippi River at Helena, is narrow, so there is no way to stop on it for photographs. Once across on the Arkansas side, I wound down to the water’s edge at a loading dock for barges for a few pictures. Before too long I was paid a visit by security. I was informed by these men that the whole dock area was closed to the public and that taking pictures of a “secure facility” was not allowed. I did not know that a dock for gravel barges could be so strategically important, but now I do.
After a quick visit to the Arkansas Visitor’s Center, I was back on the TAT. One of the first things you notice about the dirt roads in Southeastern Arkansas is that they really like to lay the gravel on thick. Either that, or it was just my luck that the gravel trucks had just been by for the season. Anyway, the course gravel can be four to six inches deep in many places, causing moments of excitement, especially in turns. The Toad did not have enough power to blast through this deep stuff. Instead, we just did our best wallowing along searching for the shallowest covering.
Just outside of Marvell, the home of musician Levon Helm (The Band), I noticed a sign that read “TAT Sign-In and Rest Stop, ¾ mile.” Sure enough, sitting outside of an old country store that was now closed was Percy Kale, a retired gentleman who now enjoys spending time welcoming riders on the TAT to Arkansas. Percy has a logbook that he keeps of riders who stop to visit. It is interesting reading all the comments that riders have left in the log about their ride experiences or goals. Percy also enjoys showing people around the old country store, which he has turned into a kind of museum. Toys, glassware, tools, farm equipment, antique household goods and photographs are just a few of the items in the building. If you do the ride, stop and spend some time with Percy, it will warm your heart.
Outside of Marvell, on the way to Beebe, you will pass through the White River National Wildlife Reserve and some smaller state parks. You will enjoy riding through the scenic forest roads, but again, deep gravel was an issue here as well.
When I finally arrived in Beebe, I had traveled 221 miles for the day. This makes 1,062 miles (Toad odometer) traveled to date. No real mechanical issues so far. I broke a kickstarter spring (not a problem-Hodakas have external springs) and the oil pump is still not delivering enough oil to the motor. I have been compensating by mixing additional oil in the gas. Other than these things, it is still buzzing along like it was 1978.


Riding the Levees near Ark Bayou, MS
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:48 PM   #34
ABee OP
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Photos Day Five



Mississippi River Barge Port, Helena, AR



Wecome to Arkansas
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:54 PM   #35
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Photos Day Five



Percy Kale and the TAT Arkansas Rest Stop



The deep gravel roads of southern Arkansas
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:57 PM   #36
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Photos Day Five



Read the sign. Near Roe, AR
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Old 06-09-2013, 10:11 PM   #37
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Humboldt County

Aeroscott,

Fred sold me three bikes, a 1977 250 Bultaco Pursang, a CZ 175 Sport streetbike and the Toad. I did not not know Danny that well, only from the shop and at the track. Fred had him on a 1977 125 Bultaco Pursang that was heavy and slow compared to the Japanese stuff at the time, but he would keep up with anyone out there. I raced against Danny at French's Camp, near Garberville. We also raced at Ruth Lake and the Eureka Fairgrounds locally. Danny, along with Lance Burgess from Phillipsville, were among the fastest riders in Humboldt County at the time. I am not surprised that Fred helped your friend on a Husky. (Although he never sold them, Honda of Arcata did.) Fred helped out many up and coming riders at that time, regarless of what they rode. He would work on anything and everything.
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Old 06-10-2013, 12:34 PM   #38
bymbie
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ABee * Just wanted to let you know that I love this ride report and your bikes
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Old 06-10-2013, 05:51 PM   #39
LJHrider
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Enjoying your ride report. Have rode Tenn. TAT twice , seeing lots of famaliar places also met Jonathan. Thanks
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Old 06-10-2013, 07:19 PM   #40
ShiftHead
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I grew up in Conway, AR, not far from where you are now. I will be watching your RR to see some of the old homeland down that way. Cool bike and very cool RR!
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Old 06-10-2013, 09:12 PM   #41
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Day Six



Curious onlookers, Central Arkansas

Beebe to Ozark, AR
After spending the night in an RV park in Cabot near Beebe, I set about servicing the Toad before the day’s ride. One of the benefits of riding solo is that you really don’t have to eat much dust on the dirt roads, so your air filters (and eyes, nose and ears) do not need to be cleaned as often. When I checked the filter again today, it still did not look bad, but I cleaned it anyway since I had yet to do it so far on the trip. The only dust I had seen was the occasional car or truck. I have yet to see a single motorcycle going in any direction on the TAT.
I was excited about the ride prospects today as I was going to get into the Ozark Mountains, which I had heard so much about. Before the Ozarks however, I was going to have to wind my way through Central Arkansas, which was experiencing a gas and oil boom of sorts. New wells were being constructed everywhere, with trucks, men and equipment clogging the roads. As I climbed in elevation, the farms and fields gave way to forested hills. The tiny town of Scotland served as the gateway to the forest service roads of the Ozark National Forest. These gravel roads were well maintained and reminded me of the Chattahoochee National Forest roads back in north Georgia. This was a Saturday, however, and it seemed like every other person in Arkansas was out enjoying the forest on this beautiful day. There was moderate to heavy (at times) traffic on the TAT in this area. Most were hunters and fishermen in pickups and jeeps, but there were many four wheelers on the road as well. I had a close call when a young man and woman on a four wheeler (tee shirts, shorts and no helmets) came sliding through a corner on my side of the road. We both turned to our right-hand sides in time to barely avoid the collision. Despite the traffic, the scenery was beautiful and I was treated to majestic views at the overlooks at the top of the ridges. After lunch in Hector, I passed through the Illinois Bayou and Big Piney Creek areas of the National Forest. The scenery here was even more spectacular, and the riding was great. I finally wound my way down to the little town of Oark (no Z) which is home to a cool old 19th century grocery store (now convenience store, gas station and diner). I stopped here for some fuel and was immediately approached by a patron who loved vintage bikes and used to own an Ace 100. (How many of those things did they sell?) After talking about Hodakas, this kind gentleman warned me about a Toby Keith concert that was happening that evening at Byrd’s Campground a few miles down the road. He said that the crowds would soon clog the road out to Ozark (with a Z), so I might want to get going soon. That was good advice, as the road looked like I-285 in Atlanta at rush hour. A short time later I met Donna at the Aux Arc Campground run by the Army Corps of Engineers on the Arkansas River in Ozark. This is a beautiful, clean, cheap and wonderfully maintained campground and has my highest recommendation.
237 miles, 4.3 gallons of gas, one close call and the Toad rolls on.




The Scotland, AR Post Office

ABee screwed with this post 06-11-2013 at 06:17 PM
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Old 06-10-2013, 09:16 PM   #42
ABee OP
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Photos, Day Six



You may not be able to mail a letter, but you can still get your hair cut in Scotland.



Ozark National Forest
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Old 06-10-2013, 09:20 PM   #43
ABee OP
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Photos, Day Six



Toad of the Ozarks



Big Piney Creek
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Old 06-10-2013, 09:24 PM   #44
ABee OP
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Photos, Day Six



Big Piney Creek, II




Oark General Store
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Old 06-11-2013, 01:41 AM   #45
tattewell
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That's awesome, my first bike was a very clapped out 73 Hodaka 125 Combat Wombat... while not quite the same, it still puts a smile on my face to see you having an adventure on that thing.
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