Monday, October 24, 2011

LSBMW Arkansas Fall Colors Ride

 
That time of year has arrived. The air is colder and the days are shorter and fall is right around the corner. We have had a brutally hot summer here in North Texas so I don't think anyone is going to complain about the temps dropping. The Lone Star BMW Club has an annual ride each year at this time. The ride is up to Eureka Springs Arkansas. The little town is great and the hotel rooms are very affordable and the best part of this location is... you guessed it, those awesome North Arkansas roads.
Jamie and I would be spending the first half of the week in Las Vegas Nevada celebrating our 6th wedding anniversary. We would fly back on Wednesday and then I would jump on the C-14 and head up to the springs. Jamie would be driving up Friday afternoon. She had some parent - teacher conferences that needed to be taken care of. I met Herman and Richard at the Starbucks on Bethany and 75. We had a quick cup of coffee before heading out to hook up with Pete. He would be joining us just a few miles down the road. We were meeting Jackie at our breakfast destination in Paris Texas. We had told him we would be there at 8 - 8:30am. 

We rolled into Paris right on time. There was a little mix up already on the journey. I missed a turn that we have taken a number of times. We got right back on the route, but we did bypass the gas station that Pete was waiting at to join the group. He had to ride up to Paris by himself. I am sure he was not happy. He waited an extra half hour before heading to breakfast.. sorry about that Pete. We had a great breakfast.
 
Herman, Jackie, Richard and Myself. Pete was taking the picture that I borrowed for this write up. Thanks Pete. 



We took our regular route up through Broken Bow and then we jumped on the Talimena National Scenic Byway. We had lunch at the lodge before heading the last 200 miles into Eureka Springs. Lunch was good and the weather was fantastic.

Our usual gas stop in Broken bow.
Looking out at the valley right before eating lunch at the lodge. The lodge will close in Nov and be closed for a year to be remodeled. many a good time in that place.

We made great time and actually got to the Springs around 4PM. We were one of the first groups to arrive. We checked into our hotel and then headed down the street so that we could eat and get back to watch the Texas Rangers in the playoffs. We ate at Pizza Hut and I have to say that they were in no hurry to get us served. I guess small towns breed slow service. The food was good and we got back in time to watch the game.

Bikes sitting in front of our rooms.
  We needed the rally caps on Thursday evening. the good news is the rangers won and were one step closer to becoming WS champions. 

We woke up Friday morning and it was cold. The temp got down to 33 that night and it was a steamy 35 when we rode over for breakfast. I am glad we had the cold weather gear with us. Little did we know that the rest of the weekend would be beautiful and not cold at all. Today was going to be a fun day of riding. We were doing Push Mountain, 14, 16 and parts of 123 to go along with 7 and 74. 300 miles of motorcycle heaven. It was cold after breakfast but warmed up quickly. 

Told you it was a chilly morning.
Just a few more miles to 341 and riding push mountain.
No better road in America to ride fast and enjoy the feeling of being one with your motorcycle.
 Pete had never been to this part of Arkansas. He got to see the reason why our group heads up to these parts any time that we can grab a 4 day weekend. Pete enjoyed Push and the tight twisty 123. I think he likes it up there. 

Pete reflecting on the past 12 miles of motorcycle nirvana.
The gangs all here: the great riding is nice, but sharing it with good friends is even better. L-R: Richard, Herman, Pete, Jerry and Jackie.
 We had a great selections of bikes. We could have been doing a magazine comparison article. We had 2 BMW RT's, 1 Honda ST, 1 Yamaha FJR and my Kawasaki C-14. Not a bad group of hardware. The bikes were well up to the task and it was a beautiful day for a ride. We got back to the rooms around 4:30pm. It was a great day on great roads. 

We hung out at the hotel and just kicked tires and the rest of the gang starting showing up about that time. The hotel provided the grills and the LSBMW club supplied burgers and chips for diner. Not a bad way to finish the day. Jamie was on her way from N Dallas to ride with us tomorrow. I was looking forward to logging some riding time with my best friend. 

Saturday morning arrived and it was already 10 degrees warmer than the 34 we started off in yesterday. Today we would be riding new roads up into Missouri. I had done some research and heard that the roads were almost as good as those we played on yesterday. We ate breakfast in Shell knob MO at a nice little diner. We road 76, 160 and 125 all nice little roads. Jamie enjoyed the rising as she had not been on the bike in a few weeks. One of the things that the group misses when Jamie is not there is the fact that she takes many pictures from the pillion seat. She has it down to an art. We never stop as a group, so it is cool that Jamie can be the photog of the group.  

Pete riding along behind us.

 

We did do the Peel's Ferry as Jamie had never done this. It is a cool little ride and it is something that should be done if you get up this way. It is a nice break and a cool chance to get your bike on a small hometown ferry. Yes I am easily amused. haha!
Jamie and Herman awaiting the ferry.
L-R: Richard, Jackie, Jamie, Herman and Pete


My connie getting a lift.
Jamie; on a ferry posting on facebook.. ahh technology.
We finished the day up on some more nice Arkansas roads. We logged 250 miles on this Saturday. the temps were actually warm as it hit 79 in the afternoon. I have never been to Arkansas this time of year and experienced such nice warm weather. it is bad for the changing of colors but it sure was nice for riding. I can't wait to go back. 


The guy on the Goldwing looked up and there we were!
The bike rolled 20,000 in Colorado and 25,000 in Arkansas not too shabby.
Till next time.. ride safe. You can see all of the pictures from the trip here.


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