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Old 04-07-2014, 07:49 PM   #1
moontower OP
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Location: Bastrop, TX
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Deep in the heart of Texas.

Howdy fellow inmates! I thought it was about time that I started my own day tripping thread to share a place that I have come to know and love. Hopefully this will be a good practice run for my upcoming CDT and TAT rides.

Central Texas is a place that outright defines what Texas should be. Home to cowboys, cattlemen, college kids and even the world famous long haired Austin hippies, you would be hard pressed to look in any direction without seeing a friendly face. It's no eden, but to a guy that grew up in 10,062 square miles of clogged and congested city hell hole, Central Texas is a slice of heaven.

This thread will focus mainly on my trips through the Central Texas area, but may bleed over to other parts of Texas as well.

Ill be traveling on a 2006 klx300r that I bought over the winter for $900 with only 27miles on the odometer. After a little work, it was street ready.


My wife will be travelling on her heavily modified klx140.


Here is the build thread if you are interested. http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=937027
She isn't quite ready for exploring yet as we are sticking to short trips through the neighborhood until she is more confident with her riding ability. I'm sure she will be joining me soon though.

On to the first Report!
Last Friday, My wife and I decided to head out to Fredericksburg to see if we could catch the blue bonnets in bloom. My wife wasn't feeling up to riding, so we threw my 300 in the back of the truck and headed west.


The plan was to drive out to Willow City, unload the bike, then start exploring. She would follow me through the willow city loop, we would part ways at the end and we would meet up later in Fredericksburg.

The sprawling metropolis of Willow City Tx.


The willow city loop is a mostly paved (w/ dirt road spurs) road that cuts through private property for its entire length. There is a sign at the entrance stating that stopping and exiting your vehicle is prohibited and considered trespassing. I bent the rules a bit as there wasn't any other traffic (it can be packed on spring weekends) and made a couple quick stops for pics.


The foilage was pretty disappointing this year. Damn drought.


Still had some pretty good views though.






The spousal unit snapped this one of me.


Shortly after this pic was taken, I caught up with the local constabulary.bI crested hill and there he was, cruising along at 15mph for the rest of the way. I passed some bubbling brooks and a couple shaded groves that I would have loved to snap pics of. Oh well, I guess that just means I have a reason to return.

I explored a few dirt roads but felt uncomfortable dismounting to take pics as I the road didn't feel entirely "public". Next time I will definitely do more homework and bring a damn map. I did enjoy riding the twisty back roads around Fredericksburg at a healthy pace though.

Later that day, I met the boss in Fredericksburg. Fredericksburg is a small old town with a population of around 10,000 and an interesting history going back all the way to 1846. I found this interesting tidbit on wikipedia.
Quote:
The town is also notable as the home of Texas German, a dialect spoken by the first generations of German settlers who initially refused to learn English.
After pulling into town, I parked next to this Texas German bad boy...

My wife thinks that it was an American flag theme, but the last time I checked, Old Glory had more than one star. The Texas flag on the other hand....

We wandered around the main drag exploring all the old buildings and storefronts for the better part of the afternoon.

This guy was outside of a western outpost store. Inside was a ton of western clothing and guns.

Welcome to Texas.

This cactus grew up right next to the outpost and over the years people have been leaving their mark.


This marker stood in front of the town square.


In the center of the town square, we came upon this.


They also had a beautiful church. We didn't go inside as it appeared that they were having a service.





These crosses were leaned against the side of the building under the shade of a giant tree. I snapped this last pic before we left the church in search of food.



From there, the hunt was on for some tasty German treats. About halfway back to the bike, we found this poor Autobot stuck mid transformation.

The nice fireman explained that it was not a transformer and denied my request to sit on top and make firetruck noises. Disappointed and thirsty, I wondered over to the Fredericksburg brewery to cry in my beer. The food and beer were great, but the view was even better.


After dinner, we were too fat and tired to do anything else so we bought some bottles of wine, loaded up the bike and made the long trek home.

moontower screwed with this post 04-09-2014 at 01:04 PM
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:36 PM   #2
mineolaman
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sweet!

Nice report . Look forward to many more. Also, that's a sweet klx!
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:05 PM   #3
moontower OP
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Nice report . Look forward to many more. Also, that's a sweet klx!
Thanks! I wish I could have ridden the bike out there, but I'm waiting on new sprockets to come in so it will be more highway friendly. I did a little riding this morning down in the Gonzales area around and on friends ranch, ill post about it tomorrow. Thanks for reading!
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:54 PM   #4
Hesaid
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Looks good. I'm curious about your bike, not having heard of the KLX300 before. I doubt it would be plate-able here though. We are also a couple on dual sports, and we're having a great time. Hopefully this summer we'll be able to work camping into the mix as well. Hopefully you'll be able to find somewhere to ride AND stop.

MV
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Old 04-08-2014, 08:14 AM   #5
moontower OP
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Looks good. I'm curious about your bike, not having heard of the KLX300 before. I doubt it would be plate-able here though. We are also a couple on dual sports, and we're having a great time. Hopefully this summer we'll be able to work camping into the mix as well. Hopefully you'll be able to find somewhere to ride AND stop.

MV
Thanks hesaid, your daytripping thread was what convinced me to start my own. As far as the 300 goes, its a great bike for the price and very nimble. Not CA plate-able anymore if I'm not mistaken. I have heard that you can register them in Ohio (iirc) online without having an Ohio address. The klx300 weighs 40ish lbs less than the klx250s and can be bumped up to 351 fairly easily.

My next outing, I will be much more prepared with my gopro mounted for quick shots of areas that I cant stop in. Sprockets are in the mail and moto gp is just down the road this weekend...
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Old 04-08-2014, 06:51 PM   #6
Mudclod
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Old 04-08-2014, 09:31 PM   #7
moontower OP
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Thanks mudclod! I love reading your daytrippin thread! We need to meet up and ride sometime, are you going to be at motogp this year?
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Old 04-08-2014, 10:01 PM   #8
surg7498
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Originally Posted by moontower View Post
Thanks mudclod! I love reading your daytrippin thread! We need to meet up and ride sometime, are you going to be at motogp this year?

I was coming back from Louisiana on my new to me '01 Super Sherpa and the flowers between Katy, Texas and San Antonio were pretty darn amazing!

Did you see any near Gonzales?

Sergio
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Old 04-09-2014, 05:13 AM   #9
txplants
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Nice report!

I bet the Willow City Loop was a blast on that 300!
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Old 04-09-2014, 07:21 AM   #10
Mudclod
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Thanks mudclod! I love reading your daytrippin thread! We need to meet up and ride sometime, are you going to be at motogp this year?
Friday night on fifth street for the Handbuilt MC Show is as close as I will get this year. Yes, lets ride soon!
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If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there.

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Old 04-09-2014, 10:37 AM   #11
moontower OP
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I was coming back from Louisiana on my new to me '01 Super Sherpa and the flowers between Katy, Texas and San Antonio were pretty darn amazing!

Did you see any near Gonzales?

Sergio
Gonzales is getting a few wildflowers this year. So far, the best place for wildflowers this year is Bastrop County. They have sprouted up all along hwy 21 and 71. If you take any of the back roads around Smithville out towards Winchester you will find that almost every field is bursting with color. If anyone has the weekend free, head out towards LaGrange, (once home to the infamous house of ill repute) and stop by the Rohan Meadery ( http://www.rohanmeadery.com/ ). The couple that runs the meadery are nice as can be and the area is great for riding. Ill try to head out on friday on a wildflower scouting mission, until then ill post up a couple previous rides from this spring that yall might enjoy.

Quote:
I bet the Willow City Loop was a blast on that 300!
It was indeed! Riding this bike reminds me of terrorizing the neighborhood on my cousins cushman when I was 12. There is something to be said about riding a low tech, lightweight cheapie.

Quote:
Friday night on fifth street for the Handbuilt MC Show is as close as I will get this year. Yes, lets ride soon!
I might have to make it over there for the show, I work downtown but prob wont be off until 10ish on friday.

I thought you guys might enjoy this, my buddy Tim from surfporta.com made a little teaser vid for our upcoming CDT ride. Hope yall enjoy it!


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Old 04-09-2014, 07:50 PM   #12
moontower OP
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Come and take it!



The above flag has become synonymous with the pro second amendment movement. What many people don't know is how the flag actually came into existence or the very important history of the flags birthplace, Gonzales Texas. The following information has been clipped together from legend, lore, lessons from my middle school history teacher and the much more reliable wikipedia page.

In 1831, the Mexican government gave the settlers of Gonzales a small cannon to defend themselves from Indian attacks. Over the following years, political tension rose as the Mexican government began to seize firearms from settlers. The mexican government wrote a letter to the local officials demanding that the cannon be returned to the Mexican military to which the local official replied "I cannot, nor do I desire to deliver up the cannon...and only through force will we yield."

As Mexican troops arrived to seize the cannon, they were greeted by 140 pissed of Texans flying a hastily made battle flag cobbled together by the women of Gonzales. The flag read bore a simple cannon, five pointed star and the words "come and take it".

On October 2, 1835, the first battle of the Texas revolution began in Gonzales. The battle ended with the retreat of the Mexican military and the story of the Gonzales victory spread in every direction like wildfire.

My story begins not all that long ago when I decided to visit my buddy Special Ed down at his redneck retreat in Harwood. With my still stock gearing, I drove the truck down to his house and unloaded there. We rode some rather disappointing chalk roads all the way to his grandmothers house just outside of Gonzales.

The first stop on the property was the old barn that they had abandoned almost twenty years ago.


Here it is from the other side.


20 cool points to the person that can tell me what this came off of...


Im guessing that this might have come from the same machine.


From there, we tore off onto some tight cow trails through the woods. We really need to get out there and do some clearing as most of the trails were impassible.



This photo doesn't do it justice, but before this section is a sharp drop into a narrow creek with the rough patch obscured by an overgrown cedar tree. This is what you saw as you burst out from under the tree.
http://insearchofgilead.smugmug.com/...IMGP0082-L.jpg

We stopped for a bit to pick the cedar branches from our teeth and identify where we needed to clear the path later.


Eventually we emerged here and practiced our high speed drifting.


Ed took me to the original homestead that his great-great grandparents built after they left England and settled the original 12,000 acres.

The rough chipped limestone steps and some rotting floor joists.


This is looking from the front "porch". These trees mark where the original road to the house was.

After some more high speed shenanigans, we decided to hit the local dirt roads and see what we could find.


About 2 miles down the road, we stumbled upon this aging beast.

You had to duck your head while riding under the bridge, as the clearance was less than 8 feet. All along the top you cound see long scrapes in the wood where someones roof had drug across it.






Pretty old...


The road continues, shot from on top of the bridge.


We didn't get much farther as we were planning on hog hunting that night and needed to go do some scouting beforehand.

moontower screwed with this post 04-09-2014 at 09:21 PM Reason: changed wording
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Old 04-10-2014, 05:32 PM   #13
Mudclod
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Now that's a "road!" Great images man!
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If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there.

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Old 04-10-2014, 05:52 PM   #14
exoff-roadgoat
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Willow City Loop flowers usually bloom in late April, even in a bad year.

. 22 points? Chevy small block valve cover?
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:36 PM   #15
Hesaid
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So tell me, how does the countryside look in another few months? We have nice springs, but summers get hot and dry. All "golden" hillsides (we call dead grass "golden"). Do you stay greener? Do creeks run year round?

MV
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