Who went with us
Weather didn't look like a problem so all plans of trailers were scrapped. On Thursday Feb 26th Dave Monnier (1200 wing), Harold Patterson (K75c) and Steve Rosenbaum (Road King) met up at Spencer IN and rode together to my (Jay Wolf) (K75RTa) house in Vincennes, IN. They got there about 7:00 PM after hitting a rain shower on the way down.
We went over our plans to ride "The Dixie Bee Line Highway" with stops and any National park with in 50 miles.
Friday the weather was nice but brisk we left my house about 7:00 AM and headed in to get gas and meet Joe Todd (Royal Star) We picked him up at about 7:15, got gas and headed for the Dixie Bee Line Café for breakfast. We were waiting at the door when the owner arrived to open it up for breakfast. We went in and had an adequate breakfast. We talk to an old guy, who told us there was a Dixie BeeLine monument in Evansville, so we got directions. We lined our bikes up in front of the sign and the owner took our picture and we were off (8:45 AM). During Breakfast we listened to The Professor about his calculations of miles and types of roads and all we were riding that there was a 1/200 chance that one of us would be killed. Great Thought to start our trip.
We were in Evansville in about an hour and waste and other hour look for the monument, that nobody seemed to know existed. We finally decide to just go on monument or no monument. We stopped for lunch at about 1:00 in at a small restaurant (Cisco's Country Kitchen) that served cafeteria style in Goodletsville TN. Food was very good. At this stop I notice I had a nail in my rear tire. It was holding air so I decide to just leave it in and hope it makes it. Goodletsville TN had soom real neet old motels including one named the Chicagoen. We got lost several times because old 41 is not that well marked anymore. After lunch Steve lead us to Stone River National Battleground. Nashville was slow going on 41 but worth it, but it did take us 2 hour to get through. Old US 41 up to Monteagle was fun lots of turns and some major elevation changes.
We got lost in Chattanooga ending up at the Aquarium, no one seemed to know where 41 went from there. So we had to get back on the interstate for a few miles to find it again, the new missed another turn, but we finally made it.
Through northern GA 41 was only about a mile over from the interstate and was deserted no places to eat, no gas, nothing. At about 9:00 we decide we had to break our rule of no chains if we wanted to eat. So we ate at a Huddle House.
(at least we don't have Huddle house in IN). It had been a long day and we hadn't even gone 350 miles in 14 hours. So we decide we didn't want the hit morning rush hour in Atlanta, so we would grab the interstate and get to the other side of Atlanta before finding a motel. So we caught the slab and tucked and rolled Atlanta and stopped at Joneboro GA for the night. I guess it was about midnight when we got settled and went to bed.
Saturday we left the motel at about 8:00 AM and headed down 41 towards the
Atlanta Motor Speedway, About a mile before the speedway was we found M&M Biscuits, a nice place made out of the finest plywood. We stopped had breakfast and helped the ladies unload their truck full of supplies. Food was good and we enjoyed the company of the locals. From there we went on to another National Site (I can't remember?) Then on to The Andersonville Prison Site (Not a good place to be held prisoner). Then on to Plain GA to Jimmy, he wasn't home, but Steve got a stamp. We were ready for Lunch, Steve said when in Southern GA do BBQ so we were off looking for some Good BBQ and we found it. It was in a small town of Leesburg. The place didn't look like much it was a old falling down gas station the had some old picnic table out by and old gas truck, a crashed school bus and the dumpster, so we ate there and felt right a home. Food was good, pricing was a little odd as it cost $5 a person including tax no mater what you got.
From then it was on to Valdosta to catch 41 again. We got lost again, but what else in new. Flooding was very evident in northern FL. Then it was on to Williston and Bryan and Kris's We stopped a Gas station and call, Bryan came a got us. Bryan a Kris were great and had real nice place. Our plans had been to just have dinner then go find a motel, but after meeting Bryan and Kris we decide to spend the night with them. We went out to dinner, the real men rode the others trucked. Food was good and service was fine, but the waitress was unwilling to wash my bike, but the rain on the way home took care of that. Bryan and Kris's dirt road was fun in the rain. The night was pretty uneventful except one of their dogs took Dave's boots out for a walk in the rain. But it was OK because we didn't tell him for 2 days.
Sunday morning (The Crash) I don't even remember the time we left Bryan and Kris's. Joe was leading for the first and last time. We were all having a good time On the red road fishtailing a grabbing gears. The rode was wet but it wasn't rain at that time. Joe got quite a bit a head of us so when we got to the paved road we need to make up some time. Steve and I were riding almost side by side at a bout 70 mph. All we could see Joe's helmet up ahead of us. We crested the top of a hill to find Joe stopped in the middle of the road waiting on us so we didn't miss the turn. We both went in to full braking mode. The Beemer's ABS went in to function and I had the open lane to the left, Steve lock up the rear on the Harley. Steve said the front brakes were on full to but weren't up to the task. With Smoke trailing the Harley I thought Steve might make it. But Joe had started to turn and Steve hit him in the right rear. It spun Joe around but he stayed shinny side up. Steve almost stayed up right but ended up high siding at very low speed. He went hands and belly first on to the pavement. Ruining his gloves but leaving his Stitch unscathed. The Harley went on to turn totally upside down. Damages, Human: none to Joe and Steve scratched his palms and did something to one of his wrists, we wondered if he could ride that evening, but it was better the next day. Bike damages. The Royal Star had a bent turn signal that straightened out and a crushed saddle bag the we weren't men enough to straighten out, it was crushed by Steve's Crash Bar. The Harley suffered a little more damage, The crash bar, driving light and bar, windshield, and saddlebag top and latch ($680). After making sure no one was hurt and picking up the broken glass we went on our way a little wiser. From there it was forward to the next place we were lost. Lunch was kind of exciting we are a a little diner over looking a disgusting swamp. Food was good but the place didn't have indoor restrooms, but it did have a real nice outhouse. We got to Daytona USA (NASCAR place at DIS) at about 2:00 PM. Dave felt $12 was to much so he left to visit a friend in Orlando.
Steve, Joe, Harold and I went in and stayed a few hours. We left there and headed for the Beach at a bout 4:00 we were at the Beach by 4:30. We road down town and did main street. Then we rode out on the beach to find the sand was pretty soft. Steve even got the Harley stuck at one point. Well having done Daytona it was time to head for the Motel in Cocoa Beach. We rolled in to town then stopped to get out the map. After looking at the map I said I think it is down that was towards that big
Motel 6 sign. We had pulled in to a lot right across from the motel.
The motel reservation we all screwed up and the guy wasn't very peasant.
We told him what we wanted 2 rooms for 3 nights and 1 room for 2 nights and a rollaway bed for tonight only. Well he said they didn't have rollaway beds, never did, but they told us on the phone they did, he went on to say we only needed to rooms for 2 night if we were leaving Wed. By then stuff was so screwed up I agreed. We had made reservation for bottom floor rooms near parking, no such luck We ended up on the second floor. One room was nice but the other room was small and very cramped, it was like a half a room still with 2 beds. Soon after that Dave showed up and he said you need the rooms for 3 nights. We down to pay again; the guy screwed everything up. I signed and paid for my room on Harold's card and he signed and paid for his room on my card. We explained that we had another friend meeting up tomorrow, named Ben Zaborowsky and that they were to give him the other room we had reserved even if we weren't there. He wrote it all down and said OK, Once unpacked it was off to supper, we went to a stake place, but they refused to seat us and they were closing in a few minutes. We ended up eating a seafood place on the pier at Cocoa Beach. From there we went back to the Motel 6. Steve's wrist was hurting and he wasn't sure if he could ride the next day, but he was able.
The next morning I again stopped and told the Desk that Ben Zaborowsky might be coming in. We had breakfast at the Sunrise dinner and headed up to Daytona We did main street and followed signs to a secured lot to park for $3. It was run by the local police and was a great place to park. All day Monday we did the Daytona Thing, until we were bored with it so we headed out of town. We stopped at the Daytona BMW dealer, then headed out to the fairgrounds to see the advertised trial demos. We also stopped at the just over HP contest at MMI,
I think the top for the day was 175 hp no Blowers or nitrous. Then went to the Fair grounds to find out the poster was wrong no trials till Thursday. By then we had to haul to make the park by meeting time. The plans were to meet and Nance's motel but someone changed them, but we found out an Bryan and Kris's. The spot picked of the map was a problem the corner of the park we were to meet was not reachable, so we drove in to the park and met up with Joe Steve. Then we met up with Todd and waited on Nance and Ben Steve said he thought he seen a red bike in the station across from where we were to meet so I ran over and yelled at Nance and Phil to meet us. We talked and waited on Ben at least 45 more minutes. Steve and I even walked over to the corner and looked for him. Then, where to eat. I had seen a neat place called Back to the 50's near Scottsmorr, it was about 28 miles,
Well 28 miles was too far so Phil on the little Harley so we had to look closer. We pulled in to the first place we passed. A fine stake house it was,
It was highlight by a mobile message board, raw meet, a drunken waitress with personal problems, a stoned chief and a moose, and I will leave it at that. We did discuss Nance's underwear, but that is another story. We stayed till late and we had a cold ride home. When we got to the motel after midnight we looked for Ben's bike but didn't see it. We went to our rooms and Steve and Dave went down to check on Ben. He was checked in but not in the room we had reserved for him. The clerk wouldn't give out his room number but would call him and did. I let Ben tell his story but the Motel screwed everything up. Steve did room with Ben. We all decided we had had enough Daytona and all the traffic so we would split up the next day.
Joe went to see 2 of his sisters,
The rest of use went up to Port Canaveral and then to the Space center. At about 1:00 Ben split off from us and headed to see his sister. Dave stayed with us till 2:00 then headed back to Orlando to see his friend. Steve, Harold and I just screwed around. We ate at drive-in in Titusville Where the Waitress was sick and pissed off and yelled at Harold for trying to be a comedian.
(Steve Adds, "And she still got a very generous tip from the kind hearted biker scum.")We then went up to New Smyna (I think) to the bad bike part of Daytona, with the tattoos, japs bike hang from trees and all. Almost bought a new leather jacket (First Gear Scout $450), but I resisted. Our plans we to meet at a place called Crossroads in Titusville for Seafood. This was no mistake, great food, the best on the trip, worth the trip. The Dixie Crossroad is a must eat. We a had
All we could eat and then some Lobster, shrimp scallops, more shrimp for
Only $19,I have pictures. It was all we could do to ride home. There were some overloaded shocks.
on to the keys, We started out on A1A but after a few hours of averaging 25 mph we stopped and had breakfast and the Oceanview dinner. We had a large waitress that told me I could taste her biscuits anytime. I passed on that. We decided to try highway 1, it wasn't much better so we jumped on to the slab till in Miami In Miami we stopped at Shorty's Bar-B-Q . Good BBQ but not a good as the dump in GA. Then it was on to the Key
With a get lost and stop and Biscayne national Site. We watch a moray eel, left by way of Homestead Motorsports park and took the long way to the keys.
We arrived at Summerland Keys at dusk. Driving down the Keys look directly in to the sun was no fun. We drove around aimlessly till Ed Schunke (our host) walk out in to the middle of the road and flagged us down. Ed was a very interesting old man that has been retired for 30 years. He has a nice place on a canal with and airport in his back yard and airplane parking under his house. In his front yard he has a boat lift slip with and older cabin cruiser in it and the sail boat tied up in front. These boats would be our sleeping arrangements for that night. Ed was a delight we all wished we had more time to spend with him and his stories. Ed showed us some engines he had designed and built in the 30's including a 2 cylinder horizontally opposed 2-cycle model airplane engine. It was quite a piece of work. Steve tried to talk Ed in to donating it to the model airplane museum in IN. We went out to eat at a local place called the Galley and decide on sleeping arraignment. Joe would take the House with Ed, Dave and Harold would take the cabin cruiser on the lift and Steve and I would sleep on the rocking sale boat. The cabin cruiser was an older I would guess 50's vintage 24' steel hulled boat that kind of reminded me of the SS Minnow (You know 3 hour tour). It hadn't been used for a while and smelled a little musty, but the price was right. Ed brought the cruisers to the Keys himself, Via the Ohio and Mississippi rivers and across the Gulf of Mexico to the keys, cool story. The sailboat was a small 22-foot boat needing a little polishing but was a real neat boat, although small in side it had all you needed. The inside was finished with teak and mahogany. Beds were small but long enough. Steve and I didn't have to worry about tossing and turn in out sleep. I would guess Steve's bed was 2' wide x 1.5' high and 7 foot long between the engine and the outside hull.
(Steve adds, "Coffin like") Mine was a little roomier but not as long. Like the cabin cruiser it smelled a little musty from lack of use. My bed was under the front deck, there was a entry hatch over my bed so I opened it up for some air. It was strange. Although I didn't really feel the boat rocking with the hatch open I could see the stars going back and fort. Ed said that was because the boat had a 2200 LB keel and it rocks very slowly. (Please no Sail boats a Rocken Don't bother Rocken, jokes) I really enjoyed the boat and would love to someday return for an ocean cruise instead of just a sleep over. Getting in and out of it was a chore but I would do it again in a minute. After our trip in to the sun on Weds we decide not to leave heading in to the sun and instead leave the night before and drive up in to Southern FL.
Joe headed up to visit another sister and the rest of us headed for Key West.
I was the first and only warm day we had 80 degree and sunny. I found the Key West to kind of run down, past its prime. We cruised the place and stopped at the Southern most point. By cruised we mean drove around on our motorcycles, not cruised like the local. It was full of Gay Bars and Strip Joints, We weren't interested in the Gay Bars (Not that there is anything wrong with that). So
we spent a few hours in Teasers. It was quite and eye opening experience.
After Teaser it was time to head back to Ed's to pack up. We stopped and a few places to buy souvenirs. A shell necklace for Haley my 6 years old and stuffed whale keychain for for my 12-year old Marcie's backpack and some Mel Fisher Atocha earrings for my wife, who was nice enough to let me go. I was surprise the earrings made from 360 year old Gold and silver from Atocha were only $70.
Back at Ed's we had a chance for a few more stories for Ed and we were off to meet Joe up the Keys. If your in the Keys get Ed's # or Email address from us and look him, it will be worth your while. The trip up the Key's was uneventful, only seen about 50 LEO's in the 100 miles. I think that may be a record. We rode out of the keys and made a night run across the everglades. I did like the signs, that said 45 mph Panther Crossing. Stopped for dinner and had some more good Bar b Q and Steve had his Brunswick stew. Started looking for a motel, lots of no vacancy stopped in one dump, $55 looked at the rooms and decided not to stay, and if we won't stay it is bad. Stop and another $80 not that nice we went on. We after about and other hour that first one didn't look that bad, but we finally found a nice Mom and Pop, The Floridian a Petel (sp) place for $55 in ?? about and hour south of Venice. One other thing in Ft Myers we crossed Sea Gate Drive. At the motel we met a guy from Canada who was at the BMW rally in Key West and was lost heading for Daytona and he was really lost. motel at about
We left the 8:00 am and headed for breakfast. We found the Old World Restaurant. ad a great but filling breakfast. I had a Strombolli omelet. From there is was a stop in Venis to visited the man who made the biggest mistake GM ever made (hired Dave to work there) We stayed about an hour then headed bake in the the jungle of stoplights.
We spent the whole day in stopping, 100 miles of a stoplight every block. First 41 then 19 We seen lots of accidents. One a lady talking on a cell phone hit a car from behind and kept driving until she spun him around hit the van in front of me and making the other guys dodge his bumper cover. We were all glad when 19 got in to some open country.
WE kind of joke that we were going to get T-shirts that said.
" I survived HWY 19, 318 stoplights in 11 accidents". We stopped at a Honda motorcycle shop, we were surprised to find very few off road bike mostly street machines, far different than the dealers in IN. Once in the country we picked up the pace to make time. We grabbed the slab with hopes of making AL that night. Our luck of good weather ran out. We hit rain and lightning storm. We suited up and headed on.
We took 10 up to 231 we stopped for dinner at Dothon AL We eat at a fancy Italian place (Pappararri) I thrilled the waitress by removing my pants. If I had of known how much it trilled he I would stripped to the BVD's.
Steve said, he thinks shock and disgust were the actual emotions of the waitress, but I like my story better. Food was good even if we couldn't pronounce it or even knew what it was. We went in to Dothan for a motel and some beer. We put the motel room chairs on the balcony and sat watched it rain and talk for a while.
Saturday, in the morning it was still rain without any chance of it letting up. Steve lead and we headed for Tuskegee AL. We found some great roads, some of the best on the trip.
We were going though a small town Union something (I think) and there was s sign that said "Bird Dog Statue" I yelled at Steve lets see the bird dog statue.
Steve circled the block and cruised through the town. In the middle of the main intersection between the 2 largest streets, was a statue of a bird dog on top of a 6 for concrete post. It was the home of the National Trials championship of something. But nice dog, it is a shame Steve never seen it he only drove around it. Steve said he was hungry and looking for a dinner, not for K9 replicas. From there it was on to Tuskegee, nice old town with big run down houses.
Once again we were lost so we stopped for directions. We were making fun of the Bird Dog Statue and found out the lady working at the gas station was from that town. Those people take their Bird Dogs seriously. But she was a lot of fun.
We found the National Historical site, nice place if you are in the area.
We got direction of a place to eat. Pierce's Home Cookein' Great place only I was a little embarrassed to go after I notice that Steve had had an accident in his pants. He blamed it on the Stitch suit, but aren't they supposed to be waterproof. Great Food and nice people, we almost took one of the cooks with us. Most of the people thought we were crazy riding off in the rain. I bet they are still talking about the white boys who came to eat and one of them wet his pants. Heading for Horseshoe Bend National Park. Our directions were less that correct but we got back on track only about 15 miles out of the way. It was still raining and temp were dropping by Horseshoe Bend we were ready to put on some more clothes And find some slab to put on some miles. We made it up to Birmingham we couldn't decide do we ride on home or stop in Nashville for the night? We decide to ride up to Nashville and stop to eat and decide. Well we made Nashville by 6:30 pm. We could be home by midnight so we split up and headed home. Dave and Steve heading up 65 in Indy and Joe, Harold and I
Heading across 24 for 41. Well the later it is and the closer we are to home the faster we got. Running 80 mph across 24 my bike was having a heck of a time changing lanes bad rode steer, We got of on 41 and the bike still wasn't right but I just chalked it up to the road construction. We got gas before getting on to the Pennyrile. On the Pennyrile at 75 the bike was hard to control. I changed lanes, it helped some, but I thought this road is in bad shape.
After about ½ hour I was wore out so I slowed down to 60 it wasn't much better Finally I slowed down to 50. Something was wrong the bike was a hand full, we were only about 10 miles out of Henderson. I stopped. My rear tire was totally flat. At least the rain had stopped or at least down to a drizzle What to do, do we call Motow or just fix it. I had the BMW tire repair kit with 3 co2 cartridges. I decide to waste one to see how bad it was leaking we were only 10 miles from civilization. It was leaking bad, the nail/screw was out and left a big hole. The nail had made it at least 3000 miles it couldn't go 100 more.
Well I tried to plug it with one of the BMW plugs it was too big for the hole, but I got one in, I cut it off and aired it up and we took off. We went about 5 miles and the plug was out and the tire was flat I rode about an other 3 miles and decide to hang it up. We stopped again. We tried to put I the other 2 plugs in the kit without any luck. I decide to Call Motow. While I was calling Motow on the cell, Joe and Harold we working with ½ a plug. I was still giving information and she was looking up my file, when Harold said I think I got it.
So I told the lady, we are going to try to make it to Evansville I may call you later but for now forget it. We used the last of the c02 cartridges and head down the road. In Henderson we stopped and put air in the tire no gauge so I just aired it up hard. We decide we would stop and eat in Evansville and if the tire was still up we would head home. While we were eating it started raining again.
The tire was still up so we road home I got there at about 11:30 Harold still had 1.5 hours ahead of him. The tire was still up. I took it off yesterday and had it fixed right. We had a good trip but only OK weather, I did call Motow but never gave them a chance to deliver services.
My impressions Sturgis or Daytona. Sturgis no doubt. Daytona has too many cars and stoplights. Fl doesn't have the nice roads the Blackhills have.
It was odd but I traveled about the same distance on both trips 3400+
You were with a lot more bikes in Stugis, I guess maybe less cars and less gas stations but car were the minority in Sturgis, in Florida it was 50/50.
We saw a lot more crazy motorcycle driving in FL. I think it was the frustrated bikers tired of all the traffic. We didn't seem to meet up with as many bikers heading there on the road on the way out and back. The trip was fun, but Daytona wasn't worth it to me, I enjoyed out Key's trip and the Alabama day the best.
I don't think I will make Daytona and annual event for me.