Friday, July 31, 2009

Thug: Day 3

Day 3: July 31
Are we there, yet?
I made it to Sioux City. Actually, I nudged across the state line so I am officially in South Dakota. 14 hours and 850 miles of land so flat that I could see the curvature of the earth.
I really didnt ride that hard, and didnt get up early, but almost made 1000 miles in 24 hours, as in the Iron Butt Saddle Sore 1000 qualifier (ride 1000 miles in 24 hours). I was just a few minutes over 24 hours.

Super-slabs all the way. That is not the way to subscribe to the its not the destinationits the journey approach to riding. Someday, Ill take the time to get to Sturgis without touching an interstate, but that will have to wait. For now, I just need to get there.

Nevertheless, two wheels are better than all the other choices. I spent the first few hours waiting for things to warm up, which it didnt. Finally, in Illinois, it got about 70. Just over the Iowa border, the rains cameshort, but drenching. I didnt switch to my rain gear instead adopting the Caribbean mantra that its just a cooling shower. After the rainit got clear and the winds came.
Lots of northwest winds. Blew me sideways a few times. They even dislodged my Perewitz half-helmet from under my bungee-mesh thingy attached to my topcase and left it somewhere amongst the cornfields. Likewise a pair of reading glasses out of my jacket pocket.

The winds were spinning a new array of ginormous wind turbines in western Iowa. They werent there three years ago. They werent obtrusive at all..not like the way they ruined the landscape in Germany when I was there visiting in 2006. I guess there wasnt much to ruinthey just stuck them in cornfields.

I am really glad I didnt ride the Baggah out. The BMW (the Muddah?) has really got trashed. Some truck in front of me was spewing something that covered the front of the bike. Every bug stuck. There is so much construction that, combined with the winds, riding through construction zones sand blasted the bike. I felt like I was behind a 300 rear tire riding along the beach on A1A in Florida.

I skipped the largest truckstop on I-80. Too many cars..not so many trucks. I guess its a tourist attraction. Maybe Ill stop there on the flip-flop.

Most of the ride was carefree. Only one pucker moment. In a construction zone, a cage ignored the yield sign and entered the highway without the benefit of an acceleration lane or me moving out of the way. Thanks to my 58 year-old used-to-be lightning-quick reflexes, disaster was averted. I even had time to lay on the horn and shake my head in disbelief.

I was surprised that I saw very few cool cars all day. There was a new Porsche Turbo in red, albeit dulled by all the goo on the road and a Buick with a great set of rims. Other than that, nada.

My GPS tried to re-route me ever since I decided to skip Chicago and take I-80 back in Gary, IN. Like at every intersection! Now I think its mad at me for not following directions. When it says recalculating and make a legal U-turn, the womans voice speaks with such contempt that I know Im in trouble.

So, overall, a great day. I saw so many trailers, that I was glad that I was able to ride. Cant wait to get to Spearfish, meet up with Kory, and get on the Baggah.

One final thought: riding alone great distances sucks. The last time I rode out, Da Pope was with me.

Maybe next year, Streets and Da Pope can make the trip.



Anonymous said...

A Sturgis trip is definitely on my Bucket List. This year just didn't work out. But look out for the 3 Amigos in 2010!


Anonymous said...

This is great reporting! Be careful out there by yourself!
- Donna

Da Pope said...

Da Pope wishes he was there. Got my daughter married and off to Venice Italy on Saturday, now breaking opent the piggy bank to see what's left. Have a GREAT time Thug. I will be there on the next one.

Da Pope

Anonymous said...

Sturgis in 2010? My 25th anniversary? Thug, Streets and Da Pope? Ooh baby, this could be be fun.


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