Back in Frackville on Friday and Saturday, some of the closer by gang from the Goldwing Forum site dropped by for a gathering and of course the required copious amounts of food and em, adult
beverages. Some I've met before but several I hadn't and it was good to meet some that were only screen names and first names or pictures on a screen, as many of you on this site can attest to. Then it was an early turn in Saturday evening as we had to head into Newark at 3:00 am to drop my wife at the airport for her flight home. she is dealing with a spinal issue(forget which vertebrae) as well as a torn shoulder thing that requires surgery so riding long days and distances is out for her right now.
After we returned from Newark, and a much needed breakfast of leftover everything form pizza to cheese steaks I donned the gear and loaded the Wing for the return trip across PA,Ohio nad some of the midwest. Plan was to meet up with John (Madbuyer) in Indy, but he was working so a phone call had to suffice. One of the other Goldwing members met me in Bloomington IL for lunch and then rode with me until he had to peel off for his return jaunt to Joliet. No he wasn't an escapee!
Then into Spencer Iowa where my great Grandparents are buried. Great Grampa and my Great Uncle Raymond were Civil War Vets and I managed to find their burial sites. Just something I had to see.
Then into SD and the highest temps I had encountered yet. 36*c translates into 97*f, and it just kept getting hotter. Buy the time I crossed into Montana on Thursday noon, it was registering 40*c on the display, and outside Miles City I saw 44* at 75 mph on the highway. That's 111*f! Hottest I've ever experienced riding anywhere ever.
I'd been to Sturgis before, but never seen Devils Tower so that was a must do. I got to the lot at just before 9 in the morning, and it was already in the low 90's. Since I had removed my riding jacket the day before due to the (to me) unbearable heat I was more than a tad burnt in places where I got careless with the sunblock. I did my best to keep the full gear on until I stopped in Miles City for lunch and fuel, and then the coat got bungeed to the back seat and the gloves went in the trunk and a long sleeve tee was my respite from the blistering sun. As many of you know there is a serious issue with wild fires in many parts of the northwestern States and BC this year, The pic of my bike with the clouds and smoke plumes is a prairie wildfire that had me nervous from Jordan to Lewistown MT. Great Falls for the night and then a straight shot home Friday where I finally encountered rain in the Calgary area and then pretty much a downpour through Edmonton and off and on the rest of the way home. Didn't mind that a bit.
All in all, 11 days riding and 9700km or just over 6k miles. Great trip even if it was mostly solo.