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Old 06-03-2013, 06:04 AM   #1
Krazyjohnny OP
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Joined: Mar 2011
Location: McKinney, TX
Oddometer: 424
What a weekend...

Well it was time for our semi-annual gathering of the Yard Sale Racing crew over the past weekend. This time we had changed our ride format a little bit by staying in one location and riding routes from there and back over the weekend.

Our base of operations would be The Mountain Harbor Resort on Lake Ouchita, Arkansas. We are an odd crew of folks consisting of (2) geologists, a civil engineer, an airline pilot, an attorney, and a doctor. We usually have the obligatory IT guy along also, but his work go tin the way on this sojourn. Our bikes also vary from Ducati, BMW, Honda to Yamaha.

We all got collected up in Atoka, OK and set out for the Lake Ouchita target. We managed to miss most of the rain over to Clayton, OK where we stopped for some lunch. We departed Clayton with full bellies and made our way into Arkansas around Cove with our expected travel route to take us down Highway 70 then over to Mt. Ida to 270 for an easy traverse to Mountain Harbor.

As many of you know Mother Nature was not going to have any part of that. Let me just say Reed Timmer with his armored car and Bosch wipers aint got squat after this little adventure. We were travelling along 70 and as we came into Pearcy the sky got dark and low really quick. Then there was the rotation and crap spinning in the air. As we passed one of the Volunteer Fire Departments the crew was out in the driveway pointing and talking on their radios. We turned up 227 and headed for Sunshine and to 270 to try and get away from the storm.

When we were heading north out of Sunshine I noticed over my left shoulder the dark clouds falling and starting to rotate. It is raining and there is little I can do except keep going. We made it to 270 and were quickly met by the local Sheriff who told us to go and seek cover to the east. As he was talking we could see the debris circling behind us and bolted down the road to Royal, AR. We ducked into a Car wash that was a brick structure and watched the canopies at the gas station next door got flopped around for a few minutes as the storm blew through. We watched the transformers on the power poles flash and some lines come down.

Yes, I know this is not the best place to be, but we had nowhere else to go. We are on bikes and had no other cover except to get away.

What felt like 30 minutes passed and we walked over to the gas station where several folks were huddled up watching the weather on TV we found out there were two "rotating wall clouds" that we had essentially rode in between. We gathered our wits and then headed to the west to Mountain Harbor. On the way we had to negotiate trees in the road, saw power poles and trees that were snapped in half, and sheet metal wrapped around trees from building that had been torn apart.

What a trip and this was just the first day..

Friday was a pretty epic ride day. Very little traffic and near perfect temps. We rode from Mountain Harbor up to Jasper via Hwy 7 and 123 via Mount Judea. We cam back via Hwy 7 and 123 to the south and then Hwy 27 out of Dover back to Mt. Ida. Absolutely awesome even for a road neophyte like myself.

Saturday was a total rain out. We stayed in and never left our hide out. The road out of Mountain Harbor was under too much water for us to cross most of the day.

Sunday ended up being more epic than Friday. Perfect temps, no traffic, and clear skies all the way home. Highway 8 to Mena, then over to the Talimena Drive all the way to Talihina. Rode down to and over the Indian Road to Honobia. Over to Antlers where we all began to spilt off and head back home.

Great weekend and racked up another 1000 miles of smiles and riding experience.
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Old 06-03-2013, 08:08 AM   #2
Tom48
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A grand review. Thanks
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