Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Cody Trip - Motor Maid Convention Days 1 & 2

Day one started out with a "get to know you" type meeting. All the red ribbons (first time conventioneers) were seated up front and asked to turn their chairs around to face the rest of the members. All the regular member introduced themselves, periodically the president would stop and ask members questions, such as their advice to red ribbons, fondest memory, something they got away with, about previous trips to convention. Then life time members, silver and gold members were recognized and introduced themselves. Wow! these women are an inspiration. Note to self: next time bring tissue.

Next was the red ribbon/golden life members lunch where new members were able to enjoy some time with the members who have 50 years or more active riding membership. It was a great time to get to know people and hear great stories.

That afternoon there were district meetings and the ride meeting for the Dot Robinson Time Race the next morning. The basic premise for this race is that riders are given a trip sheet and draw numbers for starting positions. Riders are started at one minute intervals until all riders are dispatched. The goal is to average 30 MPH from start to finish.

Wednesday morning we are up and early, sign up for the time race begins at 6 AM. Even though we were there by 6:30 we were still numbers 51 & 52. This actually allowed us time to get some breakfast and shower before heading to the starting point.

I started off a bit rocky by forgetting to reset my trip meter and missed the 4th or 5th turn by a couple of miles causing me to back track some. By the time I reached the first check point I was already behind. Then I got lost again, had to stop along the way to fix my mirror that was coming off due to the vibration in the construction zone. Unfortunately I didn't gave the correct size hex so I ended up riding most of the race holding it on with my thumb. Hit a couple more check points, got lost AGAIN and took a detour down a road where the pavement just stopped and I had a couple miles of gravel. Finally, more by luck than anything else, I made it to the end point.

We had a nice BBQ lunch then, like a line of blue and white ants, made our way to the bleachers across the street for pictures. When that was complete, we were back across the street to line up for our parade through Powell.

We had a police escort through Powell and as far as I could see in front of me and behind me were motorcycles with blue and white riders. It was really awesome. When we finished in Powell, we hit the highway and gravel construction zone back to Cody where we paused at the local Ford dealer for a photo op and water. Then Cody PD escorted us as we paraded through Cody. What a blast! Can't wait to see pictures that were taken of the parade itself.

Finally back to the hotel after a long day, dinner, photos uploaded, blog updated. Time to relax and watch a little TV.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Cody Trip - Rexburg, ID to Cody, WY

We left Rexburg this morning before 8 AM and boy was it chilly. Bundled up in as many layers as possible to stay warm. The temp was about 56 when we hit the road. Fortunately for us most of the traffic was headed away from Yellowstone so the traffic to get in at the west entrance was not bad. Just before entering the park we spotted a couple of Motor Maids stopped for gas. Turned out they were in Rexburg last night also at another hotel. We agreed to ride into the park together. After stopping for some pictures we agreed to meet up with them again at Old Faithful.

The speed limit in most places is 45 so it was a nice sedate ride with big sweeping curves. We were along the water almost the entire time. As we entered the geyser area we got to see a couple different geysers go off from the road. It was pretty spectacular and a bit smelly due to the sulfur. The scenery was breathtaking. We made it to Old Faithful and I walked up to the viewing area. It wasn't scheduled to go off for quite some time and clouds were rolling in so I headed back to the bikes where Deb was studying the map to get us out of the park and on to Cody. While we saw the bikes of the other Motor Maids we had intended to meet there, we didn't see them.

As I approached the bikes, who do I see parked in a group on the row behind us but the Conga Crew! A group of riders, all decked out in pink who started in British Columbia and are traveling around the states to raise money for breast cancer research. Deb & I had been following them on Facebook, so we went over to say hello. Ended up having a great chat with them, got our pictures taken with them and wished them a safe trip as we parted ways.

Continuing throughYellowstone we were enjoying the ride even if we were a tad cold and hungry by now. We hadn't had much luck finding breakfast on our way into the park. At the next gas top we picked up something to tide us over and continued on. A few miles down the road what do we see? Several buffalo grazing in the field off to our left. Of course we stopped for the photo op, then moved on.

The last 50 miles or so in the park were nice easy S curves along the lake or river. We went up in elevation, we went down in elevation. The ride was quite lovely with very little traffic in our direction. However, having started early and had poor luck finding decent food along the way neither of us were feeling at the top of our game. So we started singing silly songs and making up even worse ones. The town where we thought we might be able to get coffee was all of 5 buildings, none of which served coffee, so we pressed on the final 20 miles to Cody.

In the middle of Cody, on a main street as we were waiting for a light, I looked to my right and there were three deer grazing in the yard next to me. I could have almost reached out and touched them they were that close. I'm saying "deer...deer....deer" Deb's saying "where? where?" I think she thought I was kidding, after all this was a main thoroughfare with heavy traffic.

Finally we found the hotel, cold and hungry. Checked in and found out that we had a brief district meeting at 5, so we decided to wait until after that to eat. We visited with some friends, picked up our registration packets, did a bit of shopping at the MM store then off to dinner.

Now we are settled in our room, relaxing. We didn't ride terribly far today but the temperatures took a bit out of us. Oh and the dead skunk count for today - 1.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Cody Trip - Arco, ID to Rexburg, ID

Not a whole lot to tell today, we don't have to be in Cody until Monday so we have been meandering around Idaho. When we started packing up to leave Arco, we discovered that they were lining up for a parade right in front of the motel so if we didn't get out quickly we would be stuck there for a while. So we hustled out figuring we would have breakfast in Atomic City.

While we had dressed about as warm as yesterday, we quickly realized that this was going to be a much colder ride. We missed our turn off to Atomic City and didn't get breakfast until Idaho Falls. We had to stop to put on more clothes because we were freezing.

Since our reservation in Cody isn't until Monday we had two days to dally. So we found a Quality Inn in Rexburg and decided we would stay here until Monday morning then move on to Cody. Tomorrow we'll do a day ride somewhere in the area. Dead skunk count for today - 1.

Cody Trip - Meridian, ID - Arco, ID

We left Meridian around 9AM I think headed east. Missed all the morning traffic through Boise and the temp was a chilly 64 degrees. After 20 miles on the interstate we pulled into a rest area so Deb could put the liner in her jacket and I could put on my glove liners.

We got off the interstate at Mountain Home on Hwy 20/26 called Peaks to Craters Scenic Highway. The phrase for the day was "freaking gorgeous" wish came out of our mouths around every curve it seemed. Who knew Idaho was so beautiful? Mountains to the west still capped with snow looked like they were covered in green and rust velvet. Lush green fields, awesome rock formations, cliffs and creatures. The dead skunk count for the day is 4.

For lunch we stopped at the quaint yet modern General Store in Peekaboo. This is the town that the skier Peekaboo Street is named after. Darling little place where the few locals hang out as well as sportsmen fishing or hunting in the area. it was a combination gas station, post office, general store, deli, museum really pretty cool.

Also, we spent the majority of the day in heavy winds, leaning left to go stay in our lane. We started seeing evidence of Craters of the Moon long before we got to the entrance of the park. The 5 miles loop through the park is well paved and breathtaking. The rock formations are eerie and the fact that trees and flowers actually grow there is amazing. In the flatter areas the whole area is covered with tiny yellow and pink flowers. The wind here was enough to nearly blow the bike over which made stopping along the way for pictures a tad dicey.

Back on the road towards Arco, where we found a darling old style motel called Lost River Motel. High speed wifi, fridge, microwave and cable all good, unfortunately the beds suck. However the submarine monument we came to see is practically in the front yard. The con tower or sail of the USN-666 Hawkbill aka The Devil Boat is planted right off the highway.

Dinner at Pickles' Place, home of the Atomic burger and down for the night.

Today I think we are headed to Atomic city, not sure where else as we wind our way toward Cody.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Cody Trip - Jackpot NV to Meridian ID

With a planned short day we took our time getting started and since the temp wasn't even 80 we weren't concerned about the heat. Two miles from the hotel we passed into Idaho. Lovely scenic winding road into several small towns. There were some of the cutest little cottages lining the roads through the towns.

We stopped in Buhl for coffee where they were experiencing a heat wave. Apparently last week it was freezing. The temp at noon was 74, now depending on where you live that is either sweater weather or bikini weather. Most of the folks there were clearly enjoying the warmer weather and dressed accordingly.

Deb's been frustrated with issues with her camera and not able to take as many photos as she would like. Since she lost the batteries a few days ago the issues have been intermittent. We believe it is because of the cheap batteries we had to buy so today we will get higher quality ones that should last longer.

Going through Boise, just when we needed our communicators the most they died. Our fault for not fully charging them the night before. However, we did make it through to Meridian and were just unloading the bike when Deb's aunt and uncle pulled up. We cleaned up and went to dinner with them and their son and daughter-in-law. Great conversation, good food.

Decided that since we have the time, we will spend and extra day here, do a day trip, oh and did I mention that Sierra Trading Post is across the street from the hotel? We'll do laundry and just relax. We're going to look at maps with Terri and Don to determine the most scenic way to Yellowstone. I want to go to Arco and see the Devil Boat.

Well, Deb is sitting here waiting for me to finish so. That's yesterday's update and today's plan. More later.