Thursday, September 29, 2016

Two- wheeled long ride.

   We had a beautiful Sunday. Why there were only seven bikes in our lot for a ride at 11:00 AM is strange to comprehend. However, the seven of us had a GREAT ride.

     The weather was perfect. The temperatures were just right for wearing your gear and having a comfortable ride. "Leather weather" was what we used to call those days. We set out on back roads with a destination in mind.

     On the way an apple tree became an impromptu stop and a nice spot for a break. The sidecar rig rolls pretty well down the mountain. That Stella was doing a great job of keeping up. The apples weren't bad either.
    If you notice, the buddy 170i is parked out front. He got to the top of the mountain first....THIS time.

After a beautiful ride off the top of the mountain. We stopped to look at an iron furnace and take a few pics.

I think Cody was enjoying the cafe racer Yamaha.

After remounting the bikes, it was time for a place more fun than a puppy!

         Mr. Eds Elephant Museum. A great little roadside attraction for candy, unusual soda, and a collection of elephant trinkets you just have to see.

After an infusion of sugar and sweets. We needed some real food before the sugar coma kicked in. A few miles down the road to the Lincoln Diner for lunch.

A few of our riders had to head home after lunch. So, the rest of us did a mini-tour of the Gettysburg battlefield for our out-of-town visitor. 
We checked out a few of the battlefield's little known secrets; dinosaur bridge, the castle, and even a rock you aren't allowed to walk upon. These were just some of our stops.

If you missed it; shame on you. The weather was PERFECT. The ride was nice, and the stops were fun. See you on the next one!

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Sunday, September 25, 2016

Buzz in the Valley #5

     I look forward to this ride and rally every year. It's a great time and I have made every one. A friend with a sidecar contacted me (as I have one too) about riding out together. " Do you realize how slow we will climb the long mountains? "... "Yes, I do" was his simple reply. I could detect the grin from 100 miles away. So, a simple plan was hatched. Oil was changed, tires were checked, and extra Spectro 2T oil was packed. It was going to be a long, slow WONDERFUL ride.
      We met up in Shades Gap outside of the famous Orbisonia (ask us sometime) at the only gas station in town. Fueled, a new gas can packed; we were ready to go. We took a slight detour on a little side road with a nice covered bridge to avoid the "Shadow of Death". Why take chances at the beginning of the ride?
    There is a cool church across the road, so we needed a picture of that as well with the bikes. As you can see, a SYM Symba decided to join us for the ride. Possibly the only time a Symba had to slow down and wait for a pair of Stellas.

    We decided to get back on the road and put a few miles on the bikes before needing fuel again. We hadn't gotten to the steep climbs yet, but we were anticipating the sidecar rigs to get horrible fuel milage climbing at WOT.
    We made sure to take a break here and there; sometimes just to stop and look at the scenery. The best part of this ride out is that we were not on any sort of schedule or in a hurry at all. Something the riders in this group enjoy quite a bit. We were looking forward to the rally, but half the fun is the ride there.
      We began the mountain climbs after filling up on the other side of Raystown lake. The sidecars did not disappoint as we both averaged about 40 MPG or less climbing the mountains. Keep in mind these are both two-stroke machines modified with big bore kits for the sidecars, but we were climbing at FULL THROTTLE the whole time. Speeds you ask? We aren't going to talk about that, but that kid on the bicycle could really go.
    Upon reaching the top of the mountains, we decided to give the engines a rest at our usual secret paved windmill parking spot. If you ever get a chance to listen to those big windmills in the mist; make sure you take the time to stop. We were close to the rally and ready for some food so it was soon time to head out.
     We arrived at the site to smiles and warm welcomes. They had waited for us to arrive to do a food run to the famous Coney Island in Johnstown, PA.

 If you want to try the local fare; the sundowner can't be beat. I had a young man hoppin' in place to ride in the sidecar. I think I almost had as much fun as he did seeing how much he enjoyed the ride.
    We were headed to ride the famous Incline Plane but the police had part of the city locked down and that was out for the night. So, following our host and keeping an eye out for pterodactyls (inside story) we headed back for a warm fire and some adult drinks.Cards against humanity waged on way into the night. It's a great way to learn how your friend's minds work...It's always the quiet ones..There are no pictures from around the fire; you just had to be there.

      Saturday started with a warm breakfast of pancakes, sausage, juice and coffee by our hosts. I made sure to get my share of all the choices. The weather looked a bit iffy, so we all made sure our rain gear was packed...Well, those of us that brought rain gear :). I had another person ask to ride along in the sidecar this time.
    Let's just say Denny doesn't always get the pretty girls. The sidecar did it's job and I had a great passenger for the day.
     We did catch a spot of rain. We stopped,many riders donned their rain gear, and one even pulled up the full canopy on her sidecar rig to stay dry.

We rode on through the rain and decided to stop early for lunch. A brilliant idea, as the rain passed over us during our meal and we had smooth sailing the rest of the day.

     We went by the Flight 93 memorial. A somber, but honourable field to visit. The new visitor's center is a place to see  if you ever wanted the full story on what happened that day to flight 93. We spent our time, paid our respects, and headed back to rally central for an evening meal and a warm fire.
     What an evening our host had planned. FRESH corn shells from Punkys for homemade taco's. There were several people that had brought home made canned salsa, chipotle, peppers, mmmm, mmmm, mmmm. I was in food heaven.
     The same two usual fire-bugs were at it again and got a warm fire started. We all settled in for a few drinks and....The Whiskey River Panhandlers decide to give us a show from the back deck. You had to be there, the warm fire, a talented group of musicians playing just for us while we sat enjoying our drinks. It REALLY doesn't get much better as far as I am concerned.
       A few hours later, and the rain decided to make its presence known again. Luckily, the tents were set up, the bed was made, and it was time to snuggle in for some much needed rest for the night (I love the sound of rain on a dry tent).
     In the morning we were greeted with a dry day and a warm breakfast. THANK YOU to our hosts for good warm food and drinks in the morning. I know it is work, but we truly appreciate it. This rally does feel like coming home and hanging out with friends.
     Finally, it was getting time to pack up and get ready for the ride home. There was one surprise left.  If anyone would like (and 6 people did); Brody had arranged for a tattoo session at Matthew's Party Tattoo for anyone that wanted a permanent rally patch. I didn't get one, but went along with the folks who did. Michael's work was top-notch and he took his time with each client and placed their ink just where they wanted. There was even one of the smallest detailed tattoos I had ever seen inked.

      As we headed home, the Stellas had one more trick up their sleeves and we suffered a breakdown on the way up one of the mountains. However, being prepared, we also had the part and the skill to fix it roadside. Expedient field repair. If you own a vintage bike or a 2T Stella. It IS something you should be good at.

  Miles and smiles on the ride home. Time for one last picture before we had to part ways. The Symba was still putting up with our pace and I may have detected a smile from the rider.

   We had one last stop for gas as the rain finally caught up to us.

    He will never say it, but I feel the same. It's almost over....this time. We filled the tanks, said a quick "see ya soon" and headed off into the rain and the dark. Only another hour to home. Take it easy, watch for deer, and put them away when we get there. Another great ride and rally in the books. Thanks to everyone for a grand time.

   If you would like a view of the ride from another angle. Try A scooter in the wild

  For a fun video montage of the weekend, be sure to check out this masterpiece as well. Created by our very own Stiltz. His poetry in the Anglo-Saxon style was not to be missed, but you had to be there.