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Author Topic: Share It With Someone Else  (Read 199 times)

Offline hppants

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Share It With Someone Else
« on: December 09, 2017, 04:16:28 PM »
Over the 2017 Labor Day weekend, I rode to Arkansas with 3 buddies.  MikeP introduced me to Randy and Tom about a year ago.  They’ve known each other through bicycling and Mike thought we would all be a good fit for motorcycling, and he was right.  Over the year, we’ve ridden together on weekend day trips, including Randy’s stepson often as we run the back roads around southern Louisiana.  Everyone enjoys being together as our riding expectations and interests are similar.  It became something to really look forward to.

During stops on our day trips, Mike and I started dropping hints about going a little farther.  Maybe take a few days and explore something more adventurous.  As the summer wound down, the idea took root and it became apparent that the Labor Day weekend felt right for our first big adventure.  We talked about destinations and given the circumstances, the Arkansas Ozarks seemed like the best place to go.  It’s far enough away to feel like you’ve been somewhere, but not too far given our 5 day limitation.  We decided not to camp, and Mike made hotel reservations at places we knew were decent. 

As go day on Thursday approached, the weather forecast started getting iffy.  A cold front approaching from the northwest threatened crappy rainy weather for Thursday/Friday and the guys started getting cold feet.  But I know that often the forecast changes and by Wednesday, it did.  Thursday would be rainy but not cold, and then the rest of the weekend would be cool, but nice.  So Mike and I convinced the others to go for it, and it worked out great.

I will readily admit that as a younger man, I cherished things much more selfishly.  I had this paranoid attitude about things, always wondering if something bad would happen, and if it did, would I be able to deal with it?  As I got older, I learned much more about the error of my ways.  I’m not sure if that happens from having experience, confidence, a reduction of testosterone, all of these, or even something else.  I suppose it doesn’t matter.

One product of this revelation for me is the true inner satisfaction of sharing.  I get a sense of pride and happiness watching others enjoy whatever it is I can give them.  Of course, that might apply to something tangible, but it doesn’t always.  Mike and I know how to ride Arkansas, and it was our pleasure to share that with someone else.

I hope you enjoy the pics.

Day 1.  Lafayette to Mountain View, Arkansas

As expected, I woke up to a crappy radar.  Nothing to severe, but widespread rain all around.  I can see it’s gonna move through later today, though.  We meet at the gas station in Lafayette, everyone covered in Frogg Toggs.  Considering the conditions, we decided to just slab it north to make miles while the rain and wind were falling on us.  I took the lead and set my cruise control at a safe 68 mph.

Tom uses his cell phone for GPS and about a hundred miles in, he got a severe thunderstorm alert on his phone, and motioned to me to pull over.  We took the next exit off and sought shelter at this gas station.  Randy has several motorcycles, and calls his 1000 V-Strom the “Bumble Bee”.

After about 30 minutes, the tail edge of the front is just about on top of us, and we pressed north on Hwy 167 hoping for improving conditions.  Just across the border near El Dorado, Arkansas, we stopped for lunch at this place, which was recommended by a local.

I can’t remember the name of this place, but it was kind of neat with a bunch of nostalgia lying around.

After lunch, the rain started and stopped and we found ourselves playing the rain gear shuffle.  Tom likes his Wee Strom and I do to.  He bought a Givi top box for the trip.

Mike’s Versys 1000 LT is the perfect bike for him right now.

Later in the afternoon, the rain finally pushed through and that was just in time for us to cross I-40 and get into the good stuff.  We stopped at Greer’s Dam, which was also a historical Ferry location back in the day.

If this dam ever breaks, the Little Red River is going to cause some major havoc on peeps down stream!

The Wee and the Vee!!

As we ride further north, the roads start getting nice and twisty.  Early evening, we find our destination in Mountain View, Arkansas.

My new friends look like they are having a nice time.

We settle in and pop open a cold one for some relaxation.  Mike offers his warm salutations and greetings!

The gal at the hotel desk suggested this fish house for dinner.

Not too bad.

After dinner, we rode around the town square just to check out the place.  Mike took a right on a street that looked inviting and 3 blocks later, we stumbled upon this bunch of pickers messing around.

They were playing bluegrass mixed with some gospel oldies and they were fantastic.

I wanted to ask the banjo player for a snort of this stuff, but I thought he might think I was rude.

We enjoyed doing a little knee slapping with this music, and when it was time for us to move on, I asked a patron where I could leave my tip in thanks.  She looked at me funny, explaining that “these people don’t do that here.  They just like to share their talent with others.”  I get it, I really do.

We rode back to the motel for a warm shower and some night night.  It was a great start to a great trip.

Day 2:  Mountain View, Arkansas to Jasper Arkansas.

I woke up rested and refreshed, that mattress was better than I expected.  We made do with the crappy hotel room coffee and I even had time to wipe down the red horse.

Randy’s ready to go!  Me too!

We packed up and rode a short distance to this diner in town.  As you can see, the weather is going to be just perfect.

Offline hppants

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Re: Share It With Someone Else
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2017, 04:17:09 PM »
Using old sign boards for ceiling tiles – this is my kind of place.

After a hearty breakfast, we saddled up and headed out across the Ozarks for some great riding.  Today, we have all day to get basically no where, and every road in any direction is terrific.  There is no need to strap ourselves down to anything.  I love riding days like today where we can just wing it and go wherever the wind drags us.

It doesn’t take long for the fun to begin.

Later in the morning, we stopped at this nice overlook of the White River

Plenty of green all around here, as it is too early for the leaves to change.

From there, I hopped onto Push Mountain Road heading north, the better of the two choices.  Now, for those of you that don’t know about PMR, trust me, you are missing out.  With Randy in tow just behind me, I waited until the road got smooth and twisty, and then I down shifted to 3rd and left it there.  Those guys where having a hoot ripping the V-stroms through the curves!!!

Now we have a big decision to make.  In this part of the country, if one would like to have a cold beer at the end of the ride, one has to be mindful of the places where one can actually purchase said beer.  We stopped just outside of Marshall for essentials.

Then lunch at the buffet at this place.  I’ve been here before a couple times and its pretty good.

After lunch, I grabbed hwy 27 north and then crossed over hwy 7 and picked up Hwy 16 for some more roller coaster.  We stopped anywhere we felt like it.

Later in the afternoon, I jumped onto Hwy 123 heading north for some more spirited riding.  We stopped for ice cream and by now, it’s getting a little warmer.  So I led the group to the Buffalo River crossing at Hasty.  The water was running a bit more than I expected, so we grabbed a beer each and walked down to the river.

Cheers Mike!!

Well, one thing led to another and Mike, Tom, and I stripped down to our skivvies and sat in the river.  It was nice and cool.

We dried off “au naturale” on the bank and waited for the beer to metabolize.  Back up at the bikes, I realized that my bike key is missing.  Crap.  We walked back down to the bank, but it was like looking for a needle in a haystack.  Thankfully, I keep a spare key where I can find it.  I would suggest doing the same.

Then it was a short run northwest to Jasper, where we are staying tonight and tomorrow night.

This place is just across the street from the motel, and I couldn’t resist the urge to poke around.

It’s owned by this cool dude that happens to be quite a bike mechanic.  For being in the middle of no where, this place has some neat stuff.

He showed me his shop and there are some cool old bikes in there.

He says this old RD runs like a top, and I bet on these roads, that bike would be a blast.

After a couple of brewskies, we walked a couple blocks to the downtown metropolis and ate at this café.  I think I had a chicken salad.

After dinner, we popped into the Ozark Café for some pie.


We sat on the porch and sipped on my rye before turning in for the night.

Day 3:  About 225 miles of roller coaster.

We woke up fairly early and excited about whatever was coming.  After a hearty breakfast at the Ozark Café, we jumped on hwy 74 toward Ponca and stopped at the Lost Valley to take a walk.

This is a cool place.

When I was here in the Spring, the water was running so hard there would be no way for us to stand in this location.

Lots of places to explore here.

We walked up to the cave entrance and the water was low, so we wandered in.

The farther back you go, the tighter it gets.

Things got to snug for Randy, but Tom, Mike, and I made it to the end.

Pretty cool place.

Back at the bikes, we rode a short distance to Kingston and ate at this café.  I’ve eaten here before and they have pretty good sandwitches.

After lunch, I ran south on hwy 21 toward Hagarville, and then turned back north on hwy 123.  The 52 mile run on Hwy 123 from Hagarville to Mt. Judea is about as good riding as you can get.

We stopped at Haw Creek to look around.

My new friends are having a great time.

Then it was back on the bikes for some fun.  I like this old one lane bridge on Hwy 123 and have stopped there many times for pictures.

The farther north you get on this road, the better it gets.  Randy and I were ripping it pretty good on this stretch.  The weather was perfect, the road was clean, and we were really feeling it.

I stopped at Sam’s Throne to let the adrenaline wind down a bit.  We walked the short trail to the overlook.

This dude was having his own kind of fun that day.

Up here, a man can put things in perspective.  We’ve all got our priorities straight today.

Now late in the afternoon, we rode up to Harrison for a couple brews and pizza at the Brick Oven Pizza House.  Good pies at this place.

After dinner, we ran to the liquor store for some goodies.

Then it was a short ride to Jasper back at the hotel.  We had a good time on the porch with the fermented agave cutting up.  It was a nice time and everyone is have a great trip.

Day 4:  Jasper to Prescott, Arkansas

I woke up pretty dry.  Man, I think we hit that tequila pretty hard.  We had a good time last night.

Slowly, the gang stirs and we walked up to the Ozark Café for breakfast.  While there, a cool looking BMW pulls up and its my buddy Bug Doctor!  What a pleasant surprise.  Last time I saw him, he was riding a Versys, but I guess the big bike bug bit him (pun intended).  I asked him to ride with us and he agreed.

We had a nice time zipping along those great Arkansas roads.

Shortly after that, the battery on my camera crapped out.  I managed to squeeze a few more pics out of it, but they weren’t very good.

Bug Doctor split off around lunch time and we continued south.  We ran up and down Mt. Magazine (highest point in Arkansas), and then continued south until late afternoon, stopping in the town of Prescott, mostly because of timing (there is NOTHING in Prescott worth knowing).  We did eat a decent meal at the Mexican restaurant, but that’s about it.

Day 5:  Prescott, AR to Lafayette, LA

We basically skipped breakfast and hit the road pretty early.  The temperature is warning up and we wanted to enjoy what little cool weather we could.  Once we crossed the Louisiana border, roads started getting pretty familiar and we were all ready to make it home.  In Natchitoches, I hopped on the I-49 slab and set the cruise at a comfortable 85 mph.  Everyone got home in the mid afternoon.

So it was another good Arkansas trip in the books for Mike and I.  It was nothing overly spectacular.  We’ve seen everything we did before, but this time it was special because we got to share it with someone else.

Stay Thirsty, My Friends….

Offline clearviewx

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Re: Share It With Someone Else
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2017, 09:01:29 AM »
Thanks for sharing enjoyed it. :claps:
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Offline Hog Dog

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Re: Share It With Someone Else
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2017, 06:08:56 PM »
Good times when traveling with Pants.  Glad there was no Pants on the ground.
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Offline Hawks Nest

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Re: Share It With Someone Else
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2017, 08:18:06 PM »
Enjoyed reading your ride report. Thank you for sharing.


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