coast to coast in 4 days
[SIZE=6]below is a post about the ride. I made the news paper several times, tv twice, and alot of good info about motorcycles and BMW bikes. One report stated that he didnt know that BMW made a motorcycle. They raised about 5k on my behind. all of the procedes went to the Middle Ga United Way.
Coast to Coast Trip Report
It started about a year ago with an idle conversation. Every guy who has ever ridden a motorcycle would like to say, “I’ve been coast to coast.” So, I started planning and thinking. I studied the weather patterns and routes. Interstate 10 was the most direct and perhaps the most boring. “And boring is good.” Just riding is enough excitement. Then I mentioned to Mr. Draper, the director of the Heart of Georgia United Way, that I wanted to do something for Dublin and it clicked. “A benefit ride for the United Way.”
So, I told my wife the plan. She gave me that-look, the one that every guy knows, but she didn’t say no.
The plan was set I and departed Dublin on the 23rd of April. I spent hours packing the loading the bike the night before. Bags of carrots, broccoli, peanuts, goo-packs, bottles of Ensure, and enough snack bars to stock a Kroger shelf, I was set. I didn’t sleep the night before. I tried to come-up with an excuse, but it was too late. The departure went off without a hitch. A 7:00 am depurate resulted in flowing though Valdosta by 10 AM. The bike felt good. I caught myself singing under my breath and waving at strangers. After stopping for lunch, I realized that I’d been on the bike for 6 hours. No more singing but, the sprits were high. Back on the bike after 30 or 40 minutes. I really wanted to make it to New Orleans before night-fall. With fatigue sitting on my shoulder, I made it and found a national chain hotel. It smelt like matholide or embalming fluid, but it had a bed. While walking to a restaurant, I tripped on a curb and did a very ugly fall and roll. I jumped up, hoping no one saw. When I realized that my 51 year old frame wasn’t hurt, I chuckled to myself how dangerous walking could be
Day 2, I was on the road by 7 am. The morning was cool and I was rested. Back to singing and waving. That ended pretty quickly west of New Orleans. I was in the middle of three lanes of I-10. Ahead there was a piece of 4x4 lying in the road. It was about 3 or 4 feet long. I was following a pickup, had a car on my left, a semi-truck on the right, and a suv about 3 millimeters from my rear. The truck in front of me straddled the wood and the semi moved to right so that I could go around the wood. The suv hit the wood, and smoke rolled from vehicle while they pulled over. Thank goodness the trucker was looking out for me. He might have saved my life. The rest of the day was uneventful. That night, while checking in to a holiday inn in Texas, I told the receptionist what I was doing. An older gentleman came from behind a blind wall. We talked for a few minutes. He stated that he always wanted to ride a motorcycle across the country.
Day 3, The next morning when I was checking out. The clerk stated. “The owner comped your room to benefit the United Way ride.” I thought, “how about that,” and started the day with a good attitude. However, a couple hours later the trill was over. This day, I would be tested to the limit. Texas was on fire that week; I could see the brush fires for as long as the eye could see. And In the desert, that’s a long way. The winds were blowing at sustained speeds of 30 with gusts of 40 all day. It was a side wind, so I fought the bike to stay in my lane. It was renlentless. I was starting to second guess myself and the whole trip. The trip started to seem like a mistake. However, I couldn’t stop. There was no place. No gas station, hotel, or even a house to ask for help. Just when I thought it couldn’t get worse, I started to wondered why it was foggy up ahead. Then I realized that it was sand-storm. It was too late to turn back. I just slowed down and rode in a wall of sand for 2 hours. It was worst riding event I’ve ever experienced in 30 years of riding. When the bike and I came through the other side, we both were grey with sand. It was in my mouth, ears and boots. I made it to El Paso just before night fall, and completed a 12 hour riding day. After checking in the hotel, a set down in a high back leather chair in my room. I managed to get my boots off and one leg out of my riding pants. I woke-up three hours later, sitting the chair. One leg out of my pants, and my arm was asleep. It was the best 3 hours sleep ive ever had. No supper that night, I just finished un-dressing and rolled into the bed.
Day 4. Feeling pretty good. However, the gps showed 960 miles to SanDiago. If was going to make it, that meant a long day without any hick-ups. Big Blue, “the bike” liked the cool desert air that morning. The highway was flat and smooth. Traffic was light and moving briskly. So, brisk it was. I flowed through the morning comfortably. Fuel stops were completed efficiently, with little conversation or stalling. Then the afternoon came and day turned long and hot. Temps were mid 90s all afternoon. I knew it would take a deg-deep attitude to make it. My behind was hurt, my back was stuck, and the my knee was on fire. I made it through New Mexico and Arizona, and It felt really good to make it to the California line. What I was not expecting was a drastic change in tempuature. All day, I rode in 90’s temps, on a flat, straight, black ribbon of asphalt. Then the California mountains pop-up out of the earth. What I was not prepared for, was in one hour, it was 5000 feet of elevation and the temps were 34 degrees. It was such a shock on the body that I had some mental issues that I’ve never experienced, and hope never happen again. I couldn’t focus properly, and was have minor holisinations. I pulled over, and put the heated gear on. I just sat there for a few minutes and thought I couldn’t go on. Then I remembered that another guy questioned Mr. Draper that I couldn’t or wouldn’t make it. I warmed up, the mind became clear and the motivation level went up. I pressed on. Two hours later, I topped the last mountain peak and down in the valley were the lights of the California valley. It was great, better than great, it was satisfying the energizing. I don’t remember much about the rest of the trip. It was a 14 hour riding day upon arrival, but it felt great to make it.
So, It was a 2436 mile trip in 4 days. I completed 2, 10 hour, 1, 12 hour, and 1, 14 hour day. I averaged 76 MPH. Drank at least 26 liters of water, and consumed 16,000 calories. And I managed to lose 8 pounds, not wanting to.
Observations. Our great county is huge. Texas is massive. The south smells totally different than the west. There are still some very good people out there. The donations made to help Dublin were much greater than I expected.
Last edited by katnapinn; Jun 11th, 2011 at 3:08 pm.