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 Taking a Break

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k_enn

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PostSubject: Taking a Break   Thu May 22, 2014 9:52 am

It looks like I will be taking a break from wheeling for a while. While I still have the Xterra (and like it), I did not get around to modifying it for offroading after the old Xterra got totaled.

This year, I got a new motorcycle. I have wanted a larger bike for a long time - something that I could ride across the country if I wanted. In celebration of our 25th anniversary, my wife and I are going to take trip to Santa Fe this year. Part of the arrangement is that I will ride the bike there, and she will fly out and meet me there.

With the new motorcycle, and the work/modification needed on it for a trip to the southwest this summer (including a couple of high mileage weekend test rides), I will not be getting around to modifying the Xterra this year. Based on what I know an X can do, and what I would likely try to do with this one, I don't want to run bone stock.

So I will be taking a break for a while from wheeling. I will still hang around the board a bit, and I might even take a ride out to Rausch some time to watch a compettition. If anyone else rides and want to do a one day or weekend motorcycle run in eastern Pennsylvania, I am up for it.

k_enn
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JeeperX
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PostSubject: Re: Taking a Break   Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:22 pm

Sounds like a great fun trip! We will be here when you get back, and are ready to wheel again. Keep us updated on the trip with pictures and reports.

Stay safe
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k_enn

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PostSubject: Re: Taking a Break   Tue Dec 16, 2014 4:42 pm

Update:

Well, my wife and I did celebrate our 25 anniversary in Santa Fe. She had a nice, routine flight there and back. I had a bit of an advernture on the motorcycle. The new bike performed flawlessly.

I went in the beginning of October. Being from the northeast, I expected the southwest to still be warm and sunny. Since I had to travel light, I planned on taking only one set of riding clothes, which was lightweight ventilated mesh. A guy in office who also rides jokingly said to "watch out for the white stuff." I asked him what he meant, and he said "snow." I laughed, but then I thought and decided to take my leather gear instead. Good thing.

Weather was my enemy, but not as I expected. I expected that I would end up riding a couple of days in the rain. Not so. It was wind and temperatures that were the issue. On the second day out, I hit some viscious cross winds that were blowing me all over a wet road surface. I was down to 45 mph to keep control on a 70 mph interstate when I bailed out to lesser highways. After my direction and the wind changed, I was able to get back on the interestate, but still had to ride easy. The next morning, the wind was better, but the bike was covered with frost. It started off chilly riding, even with my rain gear on top of my leathers for extra warmth. I almost decided to cut down to Nashville where it was warmer, but something said to keep on heading out to St, Loius. I did, and was glad because the next morning Nashville got pounded with rain but there was none where I was.

Oklahoma and Texas are big, and flat. Winds were tolerable on the way out, and even pretty mild in some places. The ride into Santa Fe was beautiful, leaving the prairie and heading towards the mountains. Believe me, God is quite an artist.

Santa Fe is a lovely town. The old section by the Plaza is quaint, and almost completely in a adobe style. Plenty of nice shops, and good restaraunts (everything from great everyday southwestern to up-scale French and Spanish). There a several notable churchs that are not to be missed, the Baslica (just off the Plaza), the Loretto Chapel (with the so-called miracle stairs), and the oldest church in North America. Great town.

The return ride was a real adventure. On the first day, I rode up Taos, then east across the mountains. While in the mountains, on a road where there was no place to stop or pull over, it started hailing about the size of small marbles. It was a nervous ride for about 4 or 5 minutes until I could finally stop and pull over. I waited that out for about an hour, and rode on. Within an hour, I was coming up over some mountains from a town when it started snowing - yes, "white stuff." It was cold, about 34 degree temperature. I turned around back to town, for a big cup of hot coffee and waited it out. Eventually I got over the mountains, and near the border with the Oklahoma pan handle. Turned out the hail and snow was the trailing edge of dip in the jet stream, bringing in a lot of cold air (and a couple of days later, a lot of destruction in the south).

The next day was the worst. Heading east with 90 degree cross wind at 20 to 25 mph with gusts up to 45 mph. A real tense ride, until my heading changed to southeast and I was being blown sideways a little less. Very tireing and low mileage day. The next day was not a whole lot better, but at least it was better as I headed across Texas and Arkansas. The winds were not bad when I rode into Memphis, and I had a great time touring Graceland. Heading home over the next few days through Tennessee, and Virginia were windy. I did manage one high mileage day (550 miles) to make up for the lost time in Oklahoma, and three hour sit on a blocked interestate in Arkansas.

Would I do it again? yes and no. I would definitely go to Santa Fe again. But I would not ride out there. Been there, done that. But I will do more long distance rides to the central and mountain parts of the country over the coming years.

k_enn
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Mudslinger
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PostSubject: Re: Taking a Break   Mon Dec 22, 2014 8:48 am

Sounds completely awesome!  I miss my motorcycle at times- it just is a different experience.  Keep us posted, be safe and God bless! Merry Christmas!
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JeeperX
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PostSubject: Re: Taking a Break   Thu Dec 25, 2014 7:37 am

That sounds really fun.I loved driving across the country I just wish we could have taken our time my dad has a book coming out with his photos from their 35 day trip to the states they had not been to yet
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XterraXtian
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PostSubject: Re: Taking a Break   Wed Jan 07, 2015 6:01 pm

KEN! I totally enjoyed reading your trip report!!!
What an amazing way to see the country! I love road trips!
Praise God for your safety! People are paying attention to anything but the road sometimes!

I'm feeling the same way about my Xterra. I haven't modified it like I did with Pete. I probably won't either. I love it just as it is. Although I will get a beater eventually.

We hope you stay in touch and stop in from time to time to let us know how everyone is.

~Pattey

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