Myrtle Beach Bike Week trip
I recently returned from a 2 week motorcycle camping vacation on my recently purchased 89 R100RT. Here are the highlights for your amusement:
Solo trip (mostly). 15 days, 3140 miles, 84 gallons gas, 2048 miles per quart. Longest day 12 hours, 543 miles, rain: Day 1 had to stop for ?¢ hour, and last day final 3 hours were continuous rain, all other days 90% sunny and hot. Kept the tires on the ground at all times (ok, 1 small wheelie in Myrtle).
Myrtle Beach Bike Week segment (via east coast): Butt started to ache about 1 hour out of Detroit. Boy, this is gonna be a really long trip. 82 in a 65 1st day eastbound on 80. I was smugly visually detecting all the troopers hidden in the median. However, my pea brain didnÔÇÖt take note of the LARGE WHITE timing marks used for the aircraft. Only good part is that Ohio doesnÔÇÖt have reciprocity with MI. 543 miles 1st day. Aborted New York City visit due to impending weather and 60 minute delay just to cross the GW bridge. Headed down east coast in 90 degree sunny days ahead of the weather.
While entire east coast was under rain, my little section at Myrtle Beach was clear and sunny for 4 days. My sons drove down to join me for boogie boarding and poker (took about $25 off the punks, then grounded them to the campsite for playing lousy poker). Second day in the ocean with Ver 2 and Ver 3, Ver 3 got smacked in the lip with his board and was bleeding quite a lot. Since one of the surfers had told us that tiger sharks were seen yesterday out by the pier we decided it was best not to do a shark/human interaction test.
Myrtle Beach Bike Week had 10,000 Harleys, 4 BMWs (2 were police), 3 Hondas, 1 Suszie. Those Harleys apparently run like crap because it takes about 5 minutes and 20 throttle snaps to get one to come to life. I enjoyed the noise, cause, hey, itÔÇÖs an engine. But, one dÔÇÖhead thought 4 am was a great time to synch his carbs. Saw one nut case in town that had on black leather pants and jacket, with full coverage helmet. This is midday. His mirror surfaced visor was closed tight. He must have been from another planet on recon, or had outstanding warrants in MB. Most of the rest of us were in shorts and T shirts because it was 93 FÔÇÖing degree and NO CLOUDS.
Visited Suck Bang Blow. CouldnÔÇÖt decide if the name of these two establishments are based on 3 of the 4 cycles of a typical cycle motor, or something altogether not cycle related. Watched the nut cases do burn outs until their rear tire blew. I think I did develop a small Woodward at one point which was a little disturbing. Must have been the rubber/air combo I was choking down at the time.
On the day I was hanging around the campsite waiting for my sons I thought IÔÇÖd check the fluids, and do some Beemer maintenance. Engine needed about 400 cc of oil, so opened my RH saddle bag which contains all sorts of tools, equipment and supplies (drill press, lathe, etc). Got out a quart of oil and funnel and topped her off. As IÔÇÖm putting the container in the trash bag I realize I used 80/90 gear oil. Well, guess it was a good time to change the oil. Course now IÔÇÖm not sure IÔÇÖm packing enough engine oil to do a change. Turns out I did have enough to hit the ÔÇÿminÔÇÖ mark. However, now I have NO gear oil for the trans or rear end should I need it. I swear I heard a small squirrel in a very shrill and high voice say WHAT A DUMB ASS. His comment didnÔÇÖt anger me, but when I turned around to size the little **** up for a egg carton coffin I saw him and his four buddies sitting on the furry butts laughing so hard they were holding their stomachs. No nuts for you!!
Cooked the boys over easy eggs with crispy bacon and French bread each morning. Tropicana Fresh Squeezed OJ. Dinners were dogs and canned stew. Hooters were in town, but that would be wrong. Figured if I hit a semi on the way home, at least IÔÇÖd be the Great Dad Who Cooked Breakfast and Boogie Boarded. Just to hedge the down side I bet my buddy $200 that I wouldnÔÇÖt make it. The $200 to be used to purchase certain ÔÇÿservicesÔÇÖ for my boys in Windsor during their mourning period.
Great Smoky Mountain National Park:
Medium length day to make the run from MB to GSMNP. Did (2) days of medium twisty riding to refresh my mountain road skills.
Ran the dragon on the 3rd day. Yikes! Used three sport bike loonies ahead of me to set the pace. Kept up with the young guns. No thoughts about clutching, braking, shifts, apexes, or really any thing else. I imagined my internal organs shut down to free up more CPU for avoiding the oncomings and the trees. Never rode that hard before! Just looked at the road ahead and tried to stay in my lane. Some of those right/lefts with no straights were hairy trying to whip my Beemer over. After the 11 miles went by in about 15 seconds found I myself abruptly at the Deals Gap store/gas/campground. About 30 bikes were there. I was so hyped at that point it took all my brain to slow down, turn left and stop without running into someone, or dropping the bike while trying to sidestand it. The counter person asked if I was going to make the run back up. No thanks, I figured I had a lucky day. She asked me if I saw the large stain from a guy who had gone wide and slid under a truck. IÔÇÖm guessing that if he made a large stain he probably didnÔÇÖt survive. A day earlier I had draped my brand new jacket over the windshield and melted a section on the exhaust pipe. So, I found a small black/silver patch ÔÇ£129 DealÔÇÖs GapÔÇØ that would nicely cover the melt spot. Could life be any better?
Hoping Lady Luck (that beoitch) was still with me I headed to HarrahÔÇÖs casino in Cherokee. As you may know that place is about 98% slots. They only had 6 BJ tables, and those were with a dealer but the cards and game are video. ThatÔÇÖs BS. I want real cardsÔÇª manly cards. They probably didnÔÇÖt have a 25 cent table anyway. Ate a decent sandwich and played nickel slots for a bit.
Donated my cell phone to the Smokey Mountains somewhere after doing the daily 7 mile trip to take a morning shower at an RV park. I remember putting the phone face down so as not to be conspicuous to some little RV rugrat. Either a rat took it, or I drove off and it fell through my fairing. (I bought a $40 refurb to replace it when I got home, so actually my loss was equivalent to only about 4 liters of vodka).
I imagined a bear in my campsite on one of the moonless nights. Decided that I was insane and no self respecting bear would eat an insane human so went back to sleep. Ah, the logical mind of the engineer once again came to my rescue. However, I did move the bar-b-que covered in steak drippings out of my tent, and changed my pad.
On the way home I visited my friend Mike Janko and his lovely wife, Susan (the plaintiff). Drank up their vodka. Taught them how to play Holdem, then watched them beat me. Hmmm, maybe they already knew how to play. Hung around the next day until 4 pm because I was weary of driving in 90 degree sun baked days. Full fairings are nice for rain, but itÔÇÖs nothing but dead air behind them. Headed up a state road for a few hours until I hit I-75, then put in the ear plugs and dialed it up to plus 8 or plus 13 (depending on sightings).
Wright Patterson AFB:
Spent about 4 hours at this spectacular Dayton museum. I hadnÔÇÖt been there in 20 years. If you havenÔÇÖt been there, it great because you can walk up and under most of the planes on the ground. I had my super bright Luxeon flashlight and used it to carefully examine items such as the Norden bombsight, the tail section and engines of the SR-71, B2 gear, and the Apollo capsule. I saw some mothers direct their children away from the man with the flashlight. DonÔÇÖt know why. BTW, they also had the small cart that is used to spool up the SR-71 engine prior to ignition. This power unit has (2) Plymouth 300 HP V8s tied together with a 7ÔÇØ wide toothed belt driving a vertical shaft that mates to the underside of the engine. Slightly larger than the starter on my cycle. Studied the main gear of the B2B and could not understand how that multi-link nightmare functions. Other interesting displays were P51, F-117A, Apollo and Gemini capsules, B29, and one old lady who didnÔÇÖt realize she was only wearing panties and a bra (waitÔÇª that was me!).