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Old 04-03-2014, 01:51 PM   #151
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyclad View Post
Huh, I see three pictures. Must be that strange German counting.

Thanks beautiful.



Looking forward to it.

I planned on two... but I couldn't decide (it's a gal thing )
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1.(Zool.) A cephalopod of the genus Sepia, having an internal shell, large eyes, and ten arms furnished with denticulated suckers, by means of which it secures its prey. 2.A foul-mouthed fellow
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Old 04-03-2014, 02:30 PM   #152
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Really great Sky! Livin good!


I can hear your voice speaking the lines you are typing.
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:38 AM   #153
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One nice thing about being on rotating shift work is that I get lots of days off when Elf is working. Not that I don't love spending time with her, but if she is working and I am not working, that means I get to Wander.

Yesterday's Wandering took me to Bald Eagle State Forest, the home of the Bald Eagle Bastards. First thing that I did was to stop by a campground to check it out for the 7Mts Campout. Looks like we may have found a new venue.

After I took care of business, it was time to hit the forest. First up was Longwell Draft Road


I did see four or five turkeys on Longwell Draft, but they just would not stay still long enough for me to take a picture. Damn birds, don't they know I well make them famous? The stream, however, was cooperative.


I dropped down off the mountain on the south side of Strong Mountain Road. There were a few moist spots.


Picked up Hunter then Treaster Valley Roads. They are in pretty damn good shape, considering the winter we had.


I then climbed back to the top of the mountain on Strong's Imporvement Road. Not sure who Strong is or what exactly was improved, but it is a nice bit of gravel that took me to Flat Hollow Road.


Flat Hollow Road is one of those somewhat misnamed roads. It is what they call a driveable trail, which means there is very little maintenance done, which means it is lots of fun. Whatever it is, flat is NOT it. Even a few places that I may have caught some air, if I was that sort of person

Flat Hollow Road brings me back to Strong Mountain Road, which I took down the north side of the mountain to Havice Valley Road. That is where one will find this pretty camp.


And this pretty stream


And yet another pretty stream a little down the road.


BESF has lots of wildlife that leave lots of tracks. Here we have the tracks of one of the faster moving creatures, the Bastard.


I rode up Poe Paddy Drive and took a break for lunch...


...with a view.


After that, it was down Pine Swamp Road, to Big Poe and Sand Mountain Roads to get back out to pavement. I did find out the dual sport trails are blazed in a new color. They say it is purple, but it sure looks pink to me. I do like the signs though; they are new as well.


One last overlook and I was out of the forest for the day.


I took the long way home after that, but it would appear that I forgot about my camera for the rest of the day. Oops, I hate it when that happens.

It looks like spring may have finally arrived. There were only a few puddles in the forest that still had rather firm water. Looking at the weather, there are not even any nights forecast to get below freezing. It's about freakin time. Means that more Wandering and more gatherings are just around the corner. Ain't nothing wrong with that!
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Skyclad's Wanderings - Bald Eagle Bastards - The Mountains are Calling, and I Must Go
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Old 04-26-2014, 05:58 PM   #154
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New farkles

Getting ready for Rick's Rendezvous, so it is time for the next round of upgrades. Mattie is growing up rather nicely.

Can you spot the new stuff?


Hints -




Look on the racks
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Old 04-28-2014, 04:51 PM   #155
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very nice - see you in a few!
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1.(Zool.) A cephalopod of the genus Sepia, having an internal shell, large eyes, and ten arms furnished with denticulated suckers, by means of which it secures its prey. 2.A foul-mouthed fellow
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Old 04-28-2014, 05:50 PM   #156
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Old 04-28-2014, 06:29 PM   #157
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So I pretty much have my route planned to get down to the RDV.

This year, instead of heading south along the mountains, I am going to go west first. I figured that it would be good to check out the western branch of the TeT, which starts in Illinois. Since I was going to be that close anyway, I though that a quick visit to St Louis would be in order. You know, get a picture of the Arch and maybe a bit of BBQ.

After St Louis, I will have fresh knobbies waiting for me in Salem IL, then it is time to hit the dirt route. Gonna make a few side trips to check out Mammoth Caverns, and also a loop around Jellico, TN on part of the Kentucky Adventure Trail. After that, it is time to head to Black Bear.

By my reckoning, it is a little over 1900 miles to get from southern PA to northeast TN. Strange, it never seems like it is that long when we head down to Julie's folks in December...
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Old 06-07-2014, 06:40 AM   #158
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OK, it is about time that I get the pictures from my ride to Rick's Rendezvous posted. I did not get anywhere near as many pictures as last year's ride. Part of that was due to just not getting the camera out as much; part of it was due to technical difficulties that will reveal themselves later.

Day 1 - Home to Athens, OH

I am getting better gear and better at packing said gear. Here is a comparison between this year


and last year


The shape of this mountain reminded me of Beartooth Mountain


the real Beartooth Mountain


Sitting in West Virginia, looking into Maryland


I pciked up US 50 in West Virginia and discovered that there are actually straight roads in WV. Who knew?
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Old 06-07-2014, 06:48 AM   #159
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Day 2 - Athens, OH to Salem, IL

US 50 would become my friend over the next couple of days. I don't know where it ends out west, but it does go through St Louis. Certainly make navigation easy when you stay on the same road. However, I will say that it is not exactly an exciting road.

Good morning, Ohio.




Somewhere around the Ohio-Indiana border the wind started.


The wind was coming in from the left, and it was continuous My arms, neck and shoulders were screaming by the end of the day.

I did find a few turns, but not many of them.
.

This is more the norm for US 50 through the Midwest




with the occasional grain silo tossed in.
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:20 AM   #160
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Day 3 - Salem, IL to St Louis, MS to Salem, IL

When I was planning this years route, I realized the west end Out of The Center portion of the Trans-eastern Trail was pretty close to St Louis. I had never been to St Louis. Now I have.

First sighting of the Gateway Arch


Crossing the Mighty Mississippi


Pretty cool old building near the Arch.


Bridges...lots of bridges


And, of course, the Gateway Arch






If you have never been to the Gateway Arch, it is worth the trip. One thing that I found is that it is hard to get a picture of the whole thing in one shot. You will have to settle for this.




Now, if one visits St Louis, one must stop for BBQ. I think there is a law about it, and we all know that I am a stickler about obeying laws.

You could do worse than choosing Smoki O's for your required BBQ






The wind was still blowing on the way back to Salem, but at least it was coming from the right now.




Interesting name for a town. I wonder if there are any Asatru living here?
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Old 06-07-2014, 08:16 AM   #161
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Day 4 - Salem, IL to Evansville, IN

The adventure starts when things stop going as planned. Well, today would be that day.

I had fresh tires installed in Salem, and it was time to get the bike dirty. Today I would be hitting the OTC portion of the TeT for the first time. I was looking forward to it.

The day started off with more straight roads, but it was not US 50. The secondary roads were at least prettier, if no more twisty (twisty and Midwest are terms which really don't go together at all).






Just because the surface changes doesn't mean there are going to be any more turns.


The gravel could be rather interesting. Illinois seems to use two versions of gravel. Regular pea gravel, which isn't too bad except where it is deep.


The other gravel is the same size, but appears to have been dug out of river bottoms. Nice and round; feels like riding on marbles.


This day brought two closed bridges. The first was only mostly closed, which meant it was still a little open.


Oh yeah, there is a third choice for gravel...none. It was by far the most interesting choice, considering the rain we had the previous night.




Time for a video!


Oh look, a hill . . . kinda . . . sorta


The bike is starting to look like a KTM is supposed to look.




And the roads continue


This tree looks like it may have experienced lightning a time or two in the past.


The first bridge was only a little closed. This bridged was CLOSED!!


Time to reroute...
Check GPS...the closest bridge is right there...cool, there is a road along the river to get there...OK, let's go.


^ that led to this


I was headed for I-64 to get across the river, so I figured it would be a good idea to make sure the brake light and turn signals were clean. When I was doing that, I discovered that I had blown a fork seal somewhere along the way. I rerouted to get to Evansville via pavement. This is what I had the time I got to the Super Bike Shop.


Shit!
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Skyclad's Wanderings - Bald Eagle Bastards - The Mountains are Calling, and I Must Go

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Old 06-07-2014, 08:34 AM   #162
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I pulled into the parking lot at Evansville Super Bike Shop about 5pm Friday afternoon, hoping they would be able to help me out and replace the blown fork seal. I did not know that they had recently moved, and Saturday was the grand opening at their new location.

Alex, their suspension guy, took a look at my bike and asked if I could leave the bike with them overnight so they could start working on it first thing in the morning. I had no problem with that, especially since they even gave me a ride to the hotel.

By 10am the next morning, my bike was ready to go with completely rebuilt forks. When I asked about buying a t-shirt, they gave me one for free. Sheesh, how can I says thanks when you guys keep doing stuff like that?

Huge thanks to Alex and the rest of the crew at Evansville Super Bike Shop. Now you will understand why I have their decals on the front fender of my bike, when it is clean enough to see them anyway.
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Old 06-07-2014, 02:09 PM   #163
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Old 06-08-2014, 06:30 AM   #164
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Day 5 - Evansville, IN to Mammoth Cave, KY

As it turned out, blowing the fork seal was not a terrible thing. About an hour after I dropped the bike off, a rather nasty storm rolled through the area. I would have still been on the trail when it hit if the seal hadn't failed. AS it was, I just had to change my plans for supper since the Chinese place I called was without power.

Anyway, I picked up the bike and got back on the road the next morning. Still pretty much the same kind of riding that I had the previous day.

Good morning, Indiana.


There were more things that resembled hills. I was happy to see them.


I did have to route around a few closed roads due to fallen trees/wires, but I only had to drive around one the whole day. I would have expected more.




A little after noon, the skies were looking ugly, and I was getting hungry, so it seemed like a good time to have lunch. The skies opened up while I was eating, so I took my time and waited for the worst of it to be done. After lunch, I crossed into Kentucky and played tag with rain showers most of the afternoon.






As I got further into KY, the terrain was starting to get hillier and more forested. More like I am used to, and to be honest, much more what I prefer. The Midwest makes for an interesting change, but give me the mountains and trees any day.


A little surprise for me just before I got to Mammoth Cave


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Old 06-08-2014, 06:47 AM   #165
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Day 6 - Mammoth Cave, KY to Jellico, TN

First thing I did was to do one of the cave tours. I learned that most of Mammoth Cave is a dry cave. That means there are none of the formations that most folks think of when they think about of cave. I rather like said formations, so I tooka short tour of one the the few wet cave portions of the cave system. I was pretty happy with the way these pictures came out, considering I could use neither flash nor tripod.





















OK the cave was nice, but I was on this trip to ride. Time to get on with that.

Back to the ferrry...


...and onto the roads of Kentucky.


the weather was much nicer than the previous day.


And the roads were much more interesting (and wet)


Can't complain about the scenery either.




After all the water crossings of the previous video, I was feeling a little overconfident dealing with the snot covered rocky bottoms. As usual, when this happens, Mother Nature says fuck you and puts you on your ass.




No damage to the bike or myself. However, my point-and-shoot camera did not appreciate getting the full submersion treatment. That sucks, because the little camera is my tool for on-the-fly photography.
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