Sunday, July 30, 2017

Curves in 5th gear

Had breakfast in Pigeon Forge at my favorite Apple Barn restaurant
One good ride this week.  I rode Wednesday to work and it was a GREAT day, but nothing special :)  I mean, it WAS special, but I didn't go "the long way" or anything like that.

GIANT moth

Awesome pic of Khaleesi and Cheyenne outside of Norris Lake

Saturday we rode 300ish miles up north close to the KY border.  The teenager had to stay behind due to having all 4 wisdom teeth removed the day before!  He's doing good, but definitely didn't need a helmet pressing against his chipmunk cheeks. The road on the map is called "The Copperhead", but it's made up of several state roads.  Hwys 31, 63, and 66.  The first leg of the road was actually a little bit scary.  Lots of sloppy patch work, open cracks (that my front tire caught a few times), tar snakes, and a crumbling shoulder.  We also had the good fortune (sarcasm) of navigating that stretch behind a tractor trailer.  Um, 15 mph switch backs behind a tractor trailer (cue the Tail of the Dragon pics of shame!).  There WAS road construction, so at least they're fixing it, but it was dodgey riding at first!

The mountain leveled out and opened up to 50/55 and we pushed the bikes to about 8 over.  It is flat out EXHILARATING to  sweep through curves at 60+.  A little counter steering goes a LONG way to smooth turns!  The cool air wrapped around our bodies as we leaned and rolled our way towards the next mountain.  I had to rig up a system for my very expensive piece of crap "made in China" Indian helmet.  (that NONE of my local dealers will help me with)  It has a visor that will NOT stay up.  When my speed gets up above 30 mph, the visor SLAMS back down.  I like to have the option of pulling it down while on the higher speed roads, but the rest of the time I like it up so I can feel like I can breathe.  So, I stuck a ... panty liner under the shield to keep it up.  I mean, it worked!  Only problem is then it's in the up position until I pull over and put it back down.  I am completely disappointed in that helmet and I will never purchase another Indian helmet again.  I like my HJC so much better, AND it was cheaper.  Live and learn!

Yep, that's a sanitary napkin!:o

At about the half way point, I had my first OH $HIT moment in a WHILE.  We'd approached an intersection, and I did as I always do and backed off.  It seemed as though David was going to keep going straight, so I rolled back on the throttle and THEN he decided to turn left.  I locked Khaleesi down so bad she fishtailed right then left then right again.  David saw me in his mirrors and rolled on down and pulled over.  I managed to keep it rubber side down and we pulled off to the side.  My heart was pounding and I sort of yelled at him a little bit and the look on his face made me back off.  HE wasn't locked down, so I'm not sure why I did.  I wonder if either my tires had something on them, or if I tried to apply the breaks in a sandy area or something.   Our angels were riding with us b/c we safely executed a U turn and continued on our way.

We found a cute little spot with actual motorcycle parking to eat a light lunch of fried pickles and potato skins, then pulled up and over the final mountain.  THIS mountain road was FRESHLY paved with nice bright white and yellow lines and not a single tar snake or pothole :)  We smoothly took the turns and hills and before we knew it it was back towards home.  The scariest part of the entire ride is the spaghetti junction like curves of the interstate system to twist around and through Knoxville towards home.  Traffic was BAD and David was flying through like he was driving the truck and not his bike.  In fact, he even had to give me the "speed up" motion but DANG.  Those ramps are concrete and I had You Tube videos of motorcycle crashes running through my head.  :o

We made it safely home.  Thanked God like always for a beautiful and great ride with more than perfect weather.  Today almost felt like an early Fall day instead of late summer.  Not sure what next weekend will bring, but I hope it involves 2 wheels!

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