Monday, October 25, 2010

Rider's Roost Recap

This weekend was spent with some JABG friends at Rider's Roost Campground. We had a gorgeous weekend for viewing the fall colors along the Blue Ridge Parkway. And bonus, it wasn't too terribly cold either! (i.e., I didn't have to be thawed out). The key to riding in 50-ish degree weather (which means the "feels like" temp when you're riding is 10 degrees colder) is to wear LAYERS! Any colder, and I'll definitely need some leather chaps.

The campground was just right for a bunch of bikers. There were fire-side chats until the wee hours, most of which were led by our very own "caveman", Charlie. There is a river that runs through the camp and when we go back again (hopefully in the summer time) we'll get in. It's also convenient to great area rides.

During one of our stops for a rest break, there were three puppies in a little shed. Apparently, these puppies were free! They were so sweet I just wanted to take one home. I wonder if they make helmets small enough for the little guys?

Along with all of the gorgeous mountains and leaves, we saw TONS of churches and nurseries (plants, not kids). There was a church around every corner and on every mountain, trailer, cliff, and parcel of land to be found. Mountain-folk sure do like their religion. And the nurseries! Now I know where Christmas trees come from! If I wasn't looking at a steeple, I was looking at a future Christmas tree.

Here's a slideshow of a few pics.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Camping Preparations

This weekend will be just the second time that I've been camping in my life. If you recall from the FAQs, Sturgis was my first camping experience. Nothing like jumping right in with both feet! This weekend we're headed to Rider's Roost in Ferguson, NC for another camping experience. Luckily, we're staying in one of the cabins since it's supposed to be colder than cold. The leaves should be just changing and viewing the fall colors from the bike should be really pretty. The best part about it is I have Friday off to prepare and Monday off to recover. I think I'll need it just to defrost myself! Can't wait...just don't forget to pack the portable heater! (that's not camping cheating, is it?) Check back in about a week for a summary blog!


Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Great Fall Weekend

I think most of us would agree that we work for the weekends. Lately, this has been more true than ever, especially when you have weekends like this one. Friday night started with roses from Jim, dinner, and a movie, all to celebrate our six-month anniversary. I know that six months doesn't seem like a long time, but good men are hard to find, and lucky for me, I found one.
6-month roses

Then we move to Saturday where we went to the fair with our friends, Dave and Cathy. It was Jim's first time at the NC State Fair, and my first time in several years. We rode the bikes there to hopefully find an easy place to park, and we did! Then we made our way through the crowds, saw the livestock, giant veggies, a bluegrass band, and the big Smokey! I wonder if we can get Jim to volunteer to run it next year...doubtful!

Then there was the food. We shared kettle corn, funnel cake, fried pickles, and yes, the Krispy Kreme burger. Before you get all grossed out, it really wasn't that bad. We took the advice of someone else who tried it and only had it with bacon and cheese. No lettuce, ketchup, or mustard, 'cause THAT would've been gross! 

The taste 

The reaction? Pretty good!

The worst thing about it was the mess the doughnuts left on your fingers. Which actually, I wouldn't know anything about since my gentleman boyfriend held it for me while I took my bites. It's the modern-day countrified version of covering a puddle of water with his coat. Chivalry at its best!

After the fair we went to Steve and Patty's house for movie night under the stars. Granted, it was a little chilly, but sitting by the fire pit snuggled under a blanket made it very cozy. And the awesome popcorn didn't hurt either!

Sunday, we rode with JABG folks 210 miles through Uwharrie National Forest then Asheboro. The trip took us through Star, NC, which is the exact geographical center of NC. Seems fitting since we've also been through the geographical center of the US (all 50 states, not the 48 contiguous in case you were wondering), Belle Fourche, SD. I also saw something I've never seen before-members of JABG consulting, of all things, a MAP! Not the GPS!! The fellas went old school, y'all.

Ended the night with Mexican food, Young and the Restless, and an early bedtime for one tired Shanpie.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Sturgis Pics...Finally!

So...finally...after about two months...I've organized and loaded the Sturgis pics into some sort of web album slideshow thingy (hopefully) that y'all will be able to click through and view. I'm still relatively new to Flickr, so fingers crossed that this thing actually works.

After five hours of going through about 1,500 pics, I've narrowed it down to these 100. There are bikes, babes, boys, boobies, booze, and blacktop. I tried to find a little something for everyone. As I stated in my first blog, the disclaimer still applies (i.e., some of these pics are PG-13, some may qualify for Rated R). And some of the pics stay just between those that actually went...what happens in Sturgis...

Most of you already know the back story behind this trip (and if you don't, just click through my earlier blogs!), so I won't go into great detail here. Hopefully the captions on the pics will describe all the beautiful, fun, interesting, crazy sites we saw. If there are burning questions, just email or comment and I'll answer!

Grab a seat, grab a beer, and away we go!

P.S. It looks like the captions don't show when you view the slideshow through the blog. If you click "Sturgis 2010" or any of the pics it should bring you to my flickr photostream where you can view the captions and descriptions. If you run the slideshow, make sure you click "show info" in the upper right hand's worth it, promise!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Raleigh Bikefest

Last weekend was the Raleigh Bikefest. The best feature of this rally? We only had to travel 20 minutes rather than 36 hours to get there! Jim and I went down on Friday night after work. Had a couple drinks, listened to some bands and walked around. At one point I thought I was going to get hit by an Amtrak, but no, it was this bike with a train horn rigged on the front. Bikers are so creative.


In comparison with the other rallies, we saw a lot fewer people, a lot more clothes on these people, and lots of kids running around. Bikes were still cool though. It's nice to have this event in our little city.

The next day we went back with some JABG friends. Met at Ray Price then rode through downtown.

Fayetteville Street Mall

There were some events, more people (still with more clothes), and tons of dogs. All of which were Great Danes. I guess it's not cool for bikers to be seen with dogs less than 100 pounds?

Also, whose idea was this booth? Shocker, bikers don't like crepes.

There was also a Carolina Hurricanes bike. So I took some pics just for my mom, and cousin, Claudia. Both of whom I think would actually ride this bike. Signed by the players and complete with hockey stick-shaped rear view mirrors.
Hurricanes seat

Skipping back to Friday night, we went to BoneDaddy's Hideaway after we left downtown. What's a BoneDaddy's you ask? (well, one of you asked) I don't know, but I like it. IMG_4849
And as it turns out, I am now mayor of BoneDaddy's - for those that follow foursquare. It wasn't much of a competition as it seems that bikers aren't really into the whole foursquare thing. I guess having your whereabouts known at all times isn't an attractive feature for bikers. Kinda ruins the whole badass thing, huh?

The best thing about Friday night was the band, Automag. A cool blend of southern and hard rock straight out of JoCo, even wrote a song about it. Good covers and good originals. Can't wait for when they come local again. Warning, some content may not be suitable for children under the age of 18, or non-biker adults over the age of say, 65? No offense.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

It's N.C. State Fair Time!!

Having grown up in Raleigh, the N.C. State Fair is in my blood. As well it should be for anyone who has grown up in North Carolina or lived here for at least one Fair season. If someone says they've never been to the Fair, I can't help but look at them like they're from outer space, or, horror of horrors, New York! And that's just what happened about six months ago.

That's when I met my boyfriend, Jim. Jim is a biker from New York. He's lived in Raleigh for five years but has never attended the Fair. When I heard this, after picking my jaw up off the floor, I immediately started thinking about what a deprived child he is! Never had the sweet and salty taste of roasted corn? The free hushpuppies in the Mill? The embarrassment of eating a huge turkey leg? The ice cream made from cows' milk just down the road? And then there's the deep fried goodies-oreos, cheesecake, and milky way bars! But, my favorite by far, fried PICKLES!!

When I saw the post for a Deep Fried Ambassador on Facebook, I thought what better opportunity to show Jim all the tasty delights that the Fair has to offer. Let this southern girl show that Yankee how it's really done. After all, if I can get on the back of a bike for him (shhh, don't tell him that I secretly LOVE it!), the least he can do is eat some greasy, tasty, artery-clogging food for me!

Side note, and something that has now become my life's mission, is getting Jim to adore southern food the way I do. Thank the dear Lord he's already a fan of good ol' Eastern North Carolina pulled pork BBQ. However, despite his insistence on calling it Cream of Wheat (wow that was hard to type), my quest to turn him into a fan of grits (extra butter and salt please) continues!!

And, I can't think of anything better than the chance to be Deep Fried American Shanpie.

Friday, September 10, 2010

25 Random Things About Me (complete with video links!)

About a year and a half ago, a "note" was going around Facebook where you were supposed to list 25 random things about yourself. Since I've now started this blog, I think I'll repost here, plus or minus a few of the random things (NSFB is my own spin on NSFW, for those of you who know what that stands for. If you don't, is your friend). Also, the title of my blog is "tales from the back of a bike (and other random tidbits)." I have shared lots of tales but not many tidbits. Here goes:

1. I always have Coke Zero stocked in my fridge. I have to drink it over ice in a glass. I don't like fizzy drinks in cans-except beer.
2. I have a super-sensitive sense of smell. Sometimes fun, like in a bakery, sometimes dangerous, like in a bakery.
3. Close talkers annoy me. My mom is a close talker and I often have to tell her to step off(!), only nicer, I mean, she is my mom after all. What's a close talker? Watch and learn.
5. I can recite any line from the movie "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" along with the actors.
6. It gives me the heebiejeebies to touch or think about anyone touching my inner arm (opposite elbow area). 
7. I like to organize people's DVDs into movies vs. TV shows and then alphabetical. For those of you whose DVDs I have organized this way, be warned that I just may stop by for an inspection when you least expect it.
9. I used to torment my little brother with the song "We Will Rock You". Not such a good idea today as he is now 6'5".
10. My "little" brother used to torment me with bacon grease yelling "grease, fat, bacon". Why this bothered me then, I have no idea, since "bacon tastes good, pork chops taste good". Come on, you must know what movie that's from! 10a. It's one of my faves. If you still don't know, check this out. 
11. I collected (ok fine, collect, present tense) Beanie Babies and am waiting to cash them in for retirement.
12. I still sleep with a Smooshee. It is missing an ear, all its stuffing, and its face. (update: said Smooshee died and has been replaced with a new Smooshee from my 1990 collection). What's a Smooshee you ask? Awww yeah, there's a commercial.
13. I got kissed by a local in a discotheque in Florence, Italy when I was 16.
14. Florence, Italy is my favorite city.
15. I have my closet organized by short sleeve/long sleeve and then by color.
16. NSFB
17. My parents once called the police on me when I was in high school. I came home at 3:30am to blue lights and a hysterical mother. But I had fun at laser tag. No judgment, it was 1994!
18. I recently discovered that I lisp when I drink too much. Well, I didn't so much discover it as my friends made fun of me for it. Apparently it'ths lotths of laughths.
19. NSFB
20. I've never had a cavity (knock on wood).
21. I once smoked a whole pack of Marlboro Reds just to see what would happen. I got sick.
22. I don't like the smell of cigarette smoke. Reference #2 and #21. Strangely, cigar smoke doesn't bother me.
23. I was once in a commercial with my dog, Joey, for the Westminster Dog Show. I have the videotape, but no link. :(
24. I once drove my Honda 120 mph just to see if I could. I can. Foreshadowing of fast times to come??!! Hmmmm

Monday, September 6, 2010

Happy What?

So, on the way to a Labor Day party, with normal Labor Day celebration things like pool time, sun, grilling, and beverages, I had to stop at my parents' house to pick something up. Imagine my surprise when I see this in the yard.

Um, excuse me, but I was under the impression that it was still summer. Why my mom decided to wish the summer away, I have no idea. So I called to tell her I was sad, and she laughed. I don't find this funny at all, and I'm sure most of you will agree (well I know at least one of you who will, Penny).

Luckily, pulling up to Jim's pool, the apartment complex was in a more festive mood. Not nearly as cute, not nearly as southern, not nearly as rhymey, but dangitall, I love it!

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Mom and Dad's house

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Lake Gaston ride

Today Dave planned and Steve led a ride to Watersview Restaurant on Lake Gaston. The view is gorgeous, right on the water (as if the name didn't give that away already). We had a nice table outside so we could enjoy the boats driving up and the skiers skiing. Wish I could be out there with them.

Slowly but surely I'm learning that it's not about the quickest or most direct route, it's about the ride. I'm one of these that likes directions, a map, a clear route (hello, have we met?!). But with bikers it's a whole other ball game. And it's actually not so bad (once you get in the right frame of mind. Which takes about, oh, well, I'll let you know when I've come to peace with that). You get to experience the area in a totally different way. Sights, sounds, and smells that you normally wouldn't experience in a car. Little towns that you never knew existed suddenly come to life. Did you know there's a Macon, NC? Inglewood, NC? To name just two.

Anyway, back to the group at the restaurant for lunch. Here we have, from left and around the table, Cathy, Dave, Patty, Steve, Pete, Melissa, and Jim. (appreciate this pic people-I almost fell in the lake for it!)

Of course, college football started yesterday. Cathy and Dave, in true team spirit and support, despite our recent, shall we say, "issues", are sporting Carolina blue (and very nicely coordinated as a couple which makes me happy).

Finally, here's what happens when a sharp-ish kick stand sits in a freshly paved parking lot in the hot sun.

Yep, Dave left his mark on Lake Gaston.

- Posted from my iPhone
Location:Littleton, NC

Friday, September 3, 2010

Eh? (Likes and Dislikes of Canada)

So-I traveled to Canada twice in the last year for work and documented a few of my thoughts in my Facebook Notes. Some of you know of my love/hate relationship with all things Canada. In keeping with the "tidbits" portion of my blog, I decided to post here.

Smells like piss.
Immigration didn't stamp my passport.
I have to listen to all instructions twice (English and French). At least English is first.
They sell milk in bags.
There are diagonal crosswalks-seems dangerous.
People don't understand what it means to wait in a line. There are rules people-don't break in line!
I haven't heard "Eh" enough to get tired of it. I'm in Canada, I want to hear it dangit!
Can't connect to gmail.
They have this fruit that looks like an apple, you eat it like an apple, but it tastes like an unripe peach...I'm not sure how to feel about this one.

Canadian bacon is different in Canada-it's better!
There are diagonal crosswalks-seems efficient!
I get to watch SYTYCD-Canada!
They have this fruit that looks like an apple...
You get to leave!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Birthday Surprises

Somehow, the month of August has come and gone. It started with getting ready for Sturgis, then recovering from Sturgis, then getting ready for Los Angeles, then recovering from Los Angeles, then getting ready for my birthday, then recovering from my birthday-see a theme here? I still have not had a chance to get all the pics from Sturgis organized and loaded, but it is on my to-do list. It's coming people, I promise!

But first, the important birthday was Monday, the 30th. No, not my 30th birthday, rather August 30th. I'm several years past 30. I'll let you decide what "several" means. A few blogs back I posted about surprises that my friends, well, surprised me with. Little did I know at the time that Jim was planning a surprise party for my birthday. Some of you may know that I'm a details gal. I like to know details. Details make me happy. Jim did not give me any details. I couldn't even trick or bribe him...I'm telling you, he's good. He enlisted several accomplices to help with various parts of the operation, and it was perfect. There was food, cake, decorations, tasty beverages, roses, and presents. It's been quite a few years since someone threw me a birthday party, let alone a surprise party, and this one ranks #1.

Side note: the party ranked at #2 is when my friend Angela along with several of our friends surprised me with a four-foot tall plush Kerokerokeroppi. She was with me when I loved and hugged on him every time we went to Sanrio at Crabtree when I was 13-14. That thing is 'da bomb stuffed animal, and yes, I say is because I still have him. There, I said it, I'm 30+ and still love stuffed animals.

Ahem, now, where was I. Ah yes, my 30s. Although this is not where I saw myself at this age by society's standards, I am happy to be here and feel lucky to have such wonderful friends and family in my life. My friend, Diana, who has an appropriate quote for every situation known to man (and puts them to very good use I might add), told me, "If things are tough, remember that every flower that ever bloomed had to go through a whole lot of dirt to get there." - Barbara Johnson.

Now for a few pics from the party.

Sneaky McSneakerson:
August 2010 027-cropped

My Diddy:

Ma and me (and a picture crasher):


Luckily, Jim is trained (among other things) to fight fire: 

"Yay! We didn't have to break out the fire extinguisher!"

Thank you, baby. The suspense was well worth it! 

Friday, August 20, 2010


Since I finished my reading material, I also perused Sky Mall (someone please tell me who needs/buys this crap!) magazine which provided a few laughs. Ironically, this was the cover!

If you've ever browsed SkyMall, you know just how bizarre some of the items are. If you haven't, allow me to share. Here we have the oversized stadium chair if you're a giant or just want to piss off the people behind you:

Below are stalker glasses which will assist me in my new profession as a P.I.

Here we have the car mouse, a Christmas gift for my dad and brother:

And lastly, a birthday gift for Penny, provided he's a good boy.

- Posted from my iPhone

Just call me P.I. Shanpie

Penny, I now know why you get kicks taking pics and writing blogs on planes. It's kinda fun to take sneaky pics of your neighbors. This neighbor ruined having my row to myself because he couldn't handle the chatter of wifey and daughter discuss the intricacies of packing lotion. Sadly, he would not allow me to be on his lunch tab. Note the Corona (with lime) and the big cookie. Apologies for the photo quality. You gotta take what you can get when you're in stealth mode.

- Posted from my iPhone

On the road again

Though the title implies another road trip, it's actually a flight. (yay for no 30+ hour rides in a truck!) This morning I left on a trip to LA for work. Throughout the year I find myself making four to five work trips, mostly day trips to DC, and most all requiring a flight somewhere. My airline of choice is American Airlines, or AA, or EE as a few work peeps like to refer to it. The EE standing, of course, for Evil Empire. Their airline of choice? USeless Air. But with the new travel and expense policy at work, we often do not have a choice which airline to fly. (Da man prefers Southwest; I prefer to get to my destination safely with as little "flair" as possible). I got lucky this time and the cheapest, most convenient flight happened to be on AA. Yay for frequent flier miles! (ask me how excited I am about this when I have to take the red eye back next Monday night).

Parking tip from one of the smart and well-traveled work peeps: take a pic of where you parked so as not to wander aimlessly upon your return (especially when that return is after a red eye). I typically like to park on level four as you can normally find a space relatively close to the elevators, but without having to circle up so many levels that you're dizzy.

(There used to be a pic here, but thanks, Alf, for alerting me to my mistake)

While I am not the most frequent flier, I have been on my share of large cross-country and cross-ocean planes. Much larger than the 3 x 3 I'm on now. However, I haven't ever sat over the wing in those large planes. I don't recommend it. My view out the window at take off was not pleasant. I know it takes huge amounts of gas and power to allow a plane to take off, especially with my big behind on it, but to see the wings struggle to cut through the wind?? NOT FUN!

I wonder what marketing genius decided to put on the wing of a flight that doesn't have WiFi?

Another tip? Don't pack the second book in your checked bag when you only have a few chapters left on book number one. I've read the in-flight mag twice in English and once in Spanish. Si, intiendo un poco de los articulos y no necesito leer espanol para mirar a las fotografias. Enrique is hot in any language.

- Posted from my iPhone

Monday, August 16, 2010

Back to Life, Back to Reality

After nine days away, it's back to the old routine. Luckily, that old routine included a soft bed with soft sheets. I probably could have slept until noon, but it was an early day for me. I picked up boys from the kennel this morning. They were very glad to get back to their quiet home and had a nice long walk tonight. Now it's time for catching up with my friends in Genoa City. Wow, I've missed a lot (and actually nothing at all...soaps are good that way).

Now for the not so pleasant part. I brought something(s) back with me from the trip...chiggers!! Yuck!!! I thought it was just nasty skeeter bites, but when I showed some people at work, then Googled it, it's chiggers. I nearly passed out. I'm trying every home remedy there is and took some Benadryl which should help with the itching. I will spare you the pics on this one. I hope my friends don't quarantine me to a leper colony.

Sunday, August 15, 2010


After 29 hours on the road we made it back safe and sound. Since it took 34 hours to get out there, I'm not sure how we cut five hours off, but thankfully we did. Now comes the fun part of unpacking, laundry, and arranging the pics we all took.

Thanks to everyone who kept us in your thoughts and prayers for a safe journey. Thank you, Diana for looking after my house and getting the mail. Thanks to my awesome parents for taking care of my yard. It looks great and I don't have to cut the grass!!

Also, I had a nice little surprise waiting for me when I got home.

I wonder if my mom knows just how true that is. Now off to sleep in my very own bed tonight!!

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:My house

Dirty bikes

After an 1,800 mile trip to Sturgis, 900 miles on the bike while in Sturgis, and 1,800 miles home we have four very dirty bikes. Two of the bikes were washed at the camp on Thursday. Though that was more for the boys' entertainment and less about actually cleaning the bikes since the ones doing the washing were bikini-clad girls.

We hit a couple of rainstorms on the way home (which actually did nothing to rinse the bikes), lots of bugs, and even more dirt. The result is below. Pictures just don't do the dirt justice. Before anyone gets any ideas (Jim) I will not be washing your bike in a bikini. It is, however, a good idea for a car/bike wash business.

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Greensboro, NC

The fly

We picked up a hitchhiking fly somewhere in Missouri and he's been tormenting us ever since. Mike caught him then released him accidentally (sadly I didn't get that on video). I did get Dave's Kung Fu skills on video though.

YouTube Video

Let this be a warning to all flies out there-Don't mess with bikers.

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Inside the Denali, I-40

In my mind I'm goin' to Carolina

Never have I been happier to be back on home soil. After seeing some parts of the country I've never seen before, I'm so lucky to live in a state as pretty as NC. Don't get me wrong, South Dakota, Wyoming, Iowa, Illinois, and the rest of the states we either visited or drove through are nice in their own way, but there's nothing like the Tar Heel state!!

Driving update: we are just over 25 hours in and have averaged 61.7 MPH including stops. The boys maintain their safe efficient driving record, and I maintain my record of not asking to stop for a potty break. Yep, I'm like a camel.

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Asheville, NC

My boys

As most of you know, I refer to my dogs, Buddy and Bailey, as my "boys". During this trip I've affectionately referred to the two-legged men as boys. So as not to confuse the two, I just want to clarify that this blog is about my four-legged furry boys, not the two-legged hairy boys.

They have been in the kennel since we left last Friday. I miss them terribly and will pick them up before work tomorrow. I can't wait to get their slobbery kisses and throw the ball for them.

Along the trip we saw a lot of dogs. Every time we passed one I had to pet it. Some people came with their dogs in their RVs and some on the bike (not sure the logistics on that one though).

The sweetest dog was Shorty who we met in Spearfish Canyon during lunch. His owner is a farmer and was one of the vendors there. Shorty is an eleven year old Border Collie with 20,000 miles on him from herding cows and sheep. Such a sweet pup he was.

There was also the docile dogs at the Longhorn Bar in Scenic, SD whose sole job it was to lay on the sawdust floor and greet the patrons.

Every time I pet one of the dogs it made me miss my boys even more. Can't wait to see their sweet faces!!

Location:40 east, TN

The sun rises over Nashville

The sun is rising over Nashville, a Citgo station, and five tired bikers. The boys have done an excellent job of driving safely with efficient stops (sometimes it really pays to be a woman, like when it comes to driving large cumbersome vehicles and packing up camp). And finally we're on 40 East! I can see the light at the end of the tunnel!! After 21 hours on the road we're 1,300 miles down and 500 miles to go. We're making MUCH better time on the way home. I can already hear my bed calling my name.

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Just east of Nashville, TN

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Eastbound and down

We're 605 miles in to our 1,800 mile trip home. Thanks to Dave, the math guy, we know we're averaging about 59-60 miles an hour including stops, which is way better than the trip out. The boys have done very well with their potty breaks.

At my suggestion we had discussion time (did you really think one of the boys would suggest discussion time?!) during dinner (which we ate while driving to save time) when I asked everyone to share what their favorite part of the trip was. Steve, Dave, and Mike enjoyed the Rushmore ride. Jim liked the Spearfish ride with the waterfalls. I would have liked the Badlands the best if the ride wasn't so hot to get out there, and so I liked the Spearfish ride the best because it was cooler (temp) and the scenery was pretty.

It's now nap time for the boys, except Steve who is driving. Naps and driving don't mix. One-third down, two-thirds to go!

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Somewhere middle America

Raleigh or bust

We woke up to rain this morning which is actually pretty relaxing to listen to from inside a tent. We got lucky that this was the first day it really rained, and our ride today is in a truck rather than a bike. Steve and Patty left camp today too, but thankfully it had stopped raining by the time they were on their bikes to leave.

We packed up the rest of our stuff and got on the road for our long trip home. We're hoping to cut a few hours off of our trip and make it home by Sunday night. We'll see if the boys can keep the potty breaks to a minimum.

It's nice to have a boyfriend that will do all the packing for you. I didn't have to touch the tent, the air mattress or anything-and in the rain no less. Thanks, Jim!

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Shade Valley Campground

Spearfish Canyon ride

Since today (Friday-in case I don't get to post this tonight) is our last full day before our trek home we decided to take an easy and short ride through Spearfish Canyon to see some beautiful waterfalls. There were three main falls, and below is a pic of Roughlock Falls.

On the way home we rode through Deadwood (I think our third trip through Deadwood) to stop and have a shot at the saloon where Wild Bill Hickock was killed.

Then on back to camp to load up the bikes and as much other stuff as we could and get ready to go.

A couple of things I've noticed while camping: the stars are gorgeous without the interference of city lights. You can see all sorts of constellations that I wish I knew the name of (though I did see the dippers).

Turkeys really DO trot. We have a nice family of turkeys that visited with us the entire time. They also lived in the trees above us, which was slightly annoying, just BTW, and I won't have any qualms about eating their brother in November.

Lastly, a week in a tent is about four days too long. I think, though, for my first camping trip I did pretty good. And bonus, I'm still alive! The bike didn't kill me and neither did the bugs!

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Spearfish, SD


Today (Thursday-in case I don't get a chance to post this tonight) we rode over 244 miles round trip to a place called Badlands. That was probably the hottest driest ride we've had so far. We stopped along the way at Scenic, SD at the Longhorn Saloon. Complete with a saw dust floor and an Indian that couldn't wait to tell us about his heritage (which I'm not sure was very accurate since he'd had quite a few Bud's and asked for five dollars for us to take his picture). Yes, those are cow heads (and the cell phone case in the way).

Then we kept on driving into Interior, SD to another whole in the wall saloon called Horseshoe. I must remember next time I go on a trip to bring my Sharpie. Just about every bar we've been in has writing on the wall. Luckily the bars have Sharpies for our use. Here is a pic of JABG that I wrote on a dollar bill that we taped up at the horseshoe. I really needed Diana's skills (and better lighting). Hopefully it turns out better than it looks on my phone.

Then we made it to the Badlands which was just awesome! Words can't describe the site from going from completely flat land to these mountains that used to be under water 300 million years ago. Here's a pic of Jim and me.

By the time we made it back to Sturgis it was dark and we had an awesome lightning show for entertainment. Luckily it was off in the distance and not at our campsite.

Now it's time to relax for another day of riding tomorrow (our last day).

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Badlands, SD

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

What happens in Sturgis...

Last night we went to the Full Throttle Saloon and it's everything it promises to be. It's one crazy party and all of it captured on film for a new season of the tv show on TruTV channel. It's the world's largest biker bar and an all around cool place. Marshall Tucker Band played last night, but we only ended up hearing maybe one song. There was fire, nakedness, dancing in cages-and that was just from the bartenders. Can't wait to see the new season and I sure hope I won't be on it.

After breakfast this morning we went back to the Full Throttle to hook up for the Hoel ride. We rode with a huge group through South Dakota and a little town that is the geographical center of the US (not sure how exactly they calculate that) over to The Little Stone Bar. Then on to Hulett, WY where Apparently it was "no panty Wednesday. I wonder if the boys knew that before we left. Then it was on to Devil's Tower.

We rode 220 miles through the two states. Luckily Steve G. kept us from the rain which was threatening us for the whole trip back from Devil's Tower.

Now it's dinner at the campsite and then we'll see what kind of trouble we get in to.

- Posted from my iPhone

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Things I've learned so far, Part 2a

So this morning I posted a blog about things I've learned. It was fairly clever, long, and even included a pic. Some of you may have seen it, but now it's not showing. So, I'll try to remember the different things and write it again.

I know you've been itching for your American Shanpie fix, and I've been a little slack. That's because service out here with AT&T is horrible. It's very spotty, and my Verizon friends aren't having any issues (I now feel your pain, Penny!). So, I've learned that AT&T and their so-called "map" only really applies to places where there are more people than cows (i.e., NOT South Dakota).

Thing 2 that I've learned, and a suggestion from Dave (go figure). You know what smells worse than a port-a-pottie? The truck that comes to clean out the potties. The take-away from this one, don't park next to the potties or the clean-up truck at a gas station.

South Dakota-ans (the second state that I don't know what they call themselves) really like to blast and bang on their granite. Yesterday we went on a 225 round-trip ride to the Crazy Horse mountain and Mt.. Rushmore. Did you know that the Crazy Horse scultpture isn't completed? When complete, it's going to look like the pic below. Considering it took about 50 years to complete just what's been done so far, I imagine my great-great-great-great grandkids might get to see the finished product.
Crazy Horse Now:

Crazy Horse when finished:

Mt. Rushmore:

Another thing I've learned, the minute it starts raining and you stop to put your rain gear on (which is not too easy for 7 people), it stops raining.

And lastly, for today at least, Zel was right. There IS a Wal-Mart everywhere. We went there today!

No attitudes

Just about every bar/restaurant has signs like the one below. Think I could steal this for my bulletin board at work?

Location:Main St., Sturgis

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Our buddy Jack

Yeah, we had shots of jack, courtesy of Mike (thanks Mike!!!).

No, I did not have two shots. Just one...for now.

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Main St. Sturgis

We made it!

After 34 hours on the road, we made it to Sturgis last night (this morning) at about 3am. The boys set up the tents (i.e., I watched) and I was in my "bed" by 4am. Never has an air mattress felt so good. We were up by 7, some a little earlier, and we showered. Facilities are pretty nice. We're now headed out for coffee and to find gas and supplies.
- Posted from my iPhone
Location:Sturgis, SD

Saturday, August 7, 2010

The sun sets on SD

Only 26 hours and 1300 miles in and we made it to South Dakota!! Too bad for us that Sturgis is on the OTHER side of SD! Which means we have about 450 miles to go. We're (that's the funny we b/c I ain't driving this thing) gonna try and drive straight there and should arrive about 5am.

We had a pretty sunset greeting us when we crossed into the state.

- Posted from my iPhone

Location:Elk Point, South Dakota

Related Posts with Thumbnails