Wow. Yesterday was something else; 440 miles total, combined rides. And ALL for a cheap little "multi-tool" with the Indian Motorcycle logo on it!
I had been pushing since Wednesday to do a "long" ride on Saturday. Rain all week was pop up showers, which had prevented me from ANY work rides. I keep having a hankering to ride out to Rock Island State Park, which is out in the general area of all the other little state parks we've been to. But then Indian Motorcycle of Marietta had to post their little poster on facebook that not only were they doing the IMC "multi-tool", but they were also doing a key chain. Soooo, we HAD to head down that way to get both!!
|City of Knoxville at midnight|
The morning dawned WET. Lovely clouds, wet roads, and dry people! We took our 3rd Muskateer with us; he's undecided whether or not he really enjoys the longer rides. I think he comes along for the food! We hit trusty 'ol 411 S down to the Ocoee area, where we then hit Hwy 68. We just took it easy, as the roads were wet enough to be kicking up water and wetting the bottom of our pants. We went through Suches, which we coined "The Cherohala Low Way". Dang, that would be a FUN ride on a dry road. Twists, curves, and twisty little easier switchbacks going DOWNHILL. Plus, on Hwy 68, we've come UP that way twice, but never down. Totally different experience going DOWN.
|Barely missing a downpour|
I was still shaking off my shakiness. I have been reassured that my tire is just fine; that back one will be replaced within about another 1000 miles (which, at the rate we're going, will be about a month). For some weird reason, I'm just in my head. I don't know why. I tried to analyze it as I'm riding, and I think I'm downshifting/upshifting in the wrong place in curves, and when I accelerate after the shift, it messes up my trajectory. I've just gotten in a BAD habit of shifting period IN a curve, and you're supposed to be all set BEFORE the curve. So, with that self diagnosis in place, I made a conscious effort to fix it, and I THINK it got better. Once we got down the mountain, there weren't too many more curvy, curvy roads.
|Love having our buddy with us|
We stopped off at a hiking spot in Suches to stretch, use the potty, and take a pic, and we had NO idea how lucky we actually were! We'd hit enough rain to that point to have to close our face shields, but it wasn't enough to soak through anything; no soaked thighs. Like I said, lower legs up to knees were wet, but that was mainly because the road was so wet there were standing puddles. As we pulled out and began the roller coaster, curvy descent, you could tell a SOAKER had just come through, WOW!
We were uneventful down in to Dahlonega, GA. It has been forever and a DAY since I've been there. It is so interesting driving through areas on a motorcycle that you were used to driving through 7+ years ago in a cage. We hit GA 400 up north to head into Alpharetta, and we just HAPPENED to see our lunch destination on our left; The Varsity. We had no idea Dawsonville had gotten a Varsity; we were planning to hit the one in Kennesaw. Whipped a U turn at a light, and enjoyed a delicious lunch of chili dogs and onion rings from a famous Atlanta iconic destination.
|Areas not been in in a LONG time!|
|"What'll you have, what'll you have??"|
From there, it was to Indian Motorcycle of Alpharetta, where I ended up schooling one of the employees, lol. We loved their logo, which is why we even bothered to stop there in the first place (aside from we'd just never been there!). As we checked out with our "dealer" T-shirts (with the cool logo on the back), the employee said he had no idea why their logo incorporated a train. Um, hello! The Polaris take on the Indian Chieftan fairing is BASED off the front end of a locomotive! So I informed him of that little fact;) On to Marietta!
|Seriously? Why the train?|
We took back roads from Alpharetta to Marietta that I hadn't been on in SO long. Certain areas were unrecognizable, it's crazy! We dodged more rain, and finally the skies seemed to really clear up. By the time we arrived, it was 3:00; 7 hours on the road. We needed to get in a small hurry b/c the teenager had a party back home at 7 he wanted to attend. We went in and they still have their race inspired Chieftan; oh, how I LOVE that bike! When I win the lottery, I will get one, then have Jared Mees autograph it!! The guys at Indian of Marietta really are awesome. Super nice, very knowledgeable, and up front with all of their customizable options.
We hit the Interstate up to Emerson; I-75. Blech! Crazy Atl drivers ... AND a Braves game. Driving 80-90 mph on the interstate doesn't bother me at all, but all the stupid cars and idiot drivers make me hold my breath. My windshield has made ALL the difference in the world, and my bike feels nice and steady at speed with no more head buffeting at all. We filled up for gas for about the 400th time, then took backroads all the way to Calhoun. In Calhoun, we hit a NEW road we'd just found in the car, Hwy 225. It was fun; that area is just beautiful and peaceful. Not too curvy, but not much traffic either. That ended back on 411 just below the GA/TN border, and we took 411 home (dropping the teenager off an hour and a half late for his party). My butt was SORE, lol. And my glove was rubbing a spot on my clutch hand; and my hands were sweaty b/c these gloves don't breathe. So I rode with naked hands for a few miles :) And it got warm enough that I stripped ALL the way down to a Dri-Fit tank top, and my mesh jacket. Felt pretty good! Started with the tank top, T shirt, long sleeved technical pullover, and mesh jacket with liner. Thank goodness David has saddlebags, lol!
|First time seeing one of these in person; WEIRD!|
You THINK this story is over now, don't you? Haha, NOPE! We hopped in the car, went to the grocery store, stopped to get dinner, then sat at home for about 45 mins. We then suited back up at 10:30 to get back on the bikes to go pick up the kid ... AND HE WANTED TO GO HOME. Dropped him off, then David and I thundered off alone ... in the dark ... to who knows WHERE. We took back roads over to Chapman Hwy, then into downtown Knoxville. More traffic than I would have expected. We rode over a bridge and looked to our left to see another bridge that was lit up so pretty; so we tossed in a U turn ... on a HILL ... to go back and get some pics. By that time, we were so sore and exhausted, we made our way back home. We rolled into the garage around 12:30.
|Just a pair of crazy kids!|
Our longest mileage ride so far. I don't think we've rolled over 400 in one day at all yet, even on our 2 overnighters. Iron Butts, we do NOT have! I can't wait for my Mustang seat to break in; it's really not that comfortable yet. I still need handlebars and floorboards for my baby before those long rides can be done with no Ibuprofen, lol. Happy to say ZERO issues. No sliding stops, no close calls, no drama. That's what I call a "SUCCESS". Until next weekend! Y'all have a great week.
|Beautiful! Never seen this park before!|