Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Horizons Unlimited North Carolina 2016

Once again Horizons Unlimited held their annual Traveler's Meeting at the Iron Horse Motorcycle Resort in Stecoah, NC.  Horizons Unlimited is a group of like minded individuals that share a love for long distance motorcycle touring.  We get together once or twice a year (there is another meeting on the east coast near Appomattox, VA in the spring) and discuss all thing motorcycle.  Most presentations at the meeting relate directly to a trip but some teach an aspect related to travel.  This year I was most interested in the presentations on photography.  We had a professional photographer show us photographic techniques including Smartphone photography and related apps.  Hopefully this will improve my photography for future postings!

My campsite at the meeting

The Horizons Unlimited tent city
Of course, I had to first ride to get to Stecoah.  Stecoah is about 80 mile from my home.  I could ride there in about and hour and a half, but why should I?  I live in a beautiful area for riding and decided to take the Blue Ridge Parkway.  The BRP can be beautiful this time of year.

Above the clouds on the Blue Ridge Parkway

At the time I was not intending on continuing this blog, but several folks asked me to pick it up again.  I am now retired and have more time to give to this blog.  It does kind of seem funny to start or resume a blog about motorcycle travel in October.  Oh well, so be it.

Soon I will be posting about the ADV Old School Fall rally held in Tellico Plains, TN.  Stay tuned!

Monday, October 10, 2016

I'm Back!

I have been asked by several people to revive this blog.  I have kind of let it slide for more than a year.  You can look forward (?) to new post in the coming week.  It kind of sucks that I have decided to revive this in October, the end of the riding season.  But, that's life.  I have just returned from a Horizons Unlimited Traveler's Meeting and will post on that next week.  I will be attending an ADV Old School Rally this weekend and will post on that shortly after the HU post.  Stay tuned and let's see where this goes!

Monday, October 12, 2015

ADV Girls Weekend 2015

Due to my son, Niels, arriving from Japan I was only able to spend one evening at the 2nd Annual ADV Girls Weekend.  This is a little get together mainly for women who habit the ADVRider.com site, but men are allowed to attend as "umbrella boys".  The rally is held annually at Willville Motorcycle Camp in Meadows of Dan, VA just off the Blue Ridge Parkway.

As I said I just rode up and back for one evening so I don't have many photos.

My camp site at Willville

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Weekend at Kickstand Lodge

I spent last weekend at the Kickstand Lodge in Stecoah, NC.  There isn't really much to tell about this trip.  I spent most of the time just hanging out at the campground.  I didn't even put a key in the motorcycle on Saturday.  It's always good at Kickstand Lodge.  It is sort of a guilty pleasure for me.  Each time I go I meet new and interesting folks and this time was no exception.

My campsite at the Kickstand Lodge

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

ADV Old School Spring Rally 2015

From April 23 to 26 I attended the ADV Old School Spring Rally.  The ADV Old School group is a great bunch of guys that get together twice a year.  It is a relatively small group and more a gathering of friends than "motorcycle rally".  This year, as usual, we met at the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground in Cruso, NC.  This is really close for me, about a 45 minute ride down the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Since this was the "Old School" rally I decided to ride my 1985 BMW R80RT.  I really love this machine even thought the Frau is always wanting me to sell it.  This year I got a cabin instead of tenting it and found that at my age I really enjoyed the added comfort.  I still like tenting, though.

My 1985 BMW in front of my cabin
 The weather was predicted to be lousy. The forecast was for 80% chance of heavy rain all day Saturday.  The forecast was wrong.  The weather was beautiful!  On Saturday I got a good ride in on the old airhead and had a great time!

On the Blue Ridge Parkway near Mount Pisgah

What can I say?

Of course, the best part of this rally is getting together with old friends and riding.  This rally was no exception.  Great friends, great bikes and great locations!

Using my new selfie stick

 I have a couple of videos to add to this post.  I hope you enjoy them!

Stay tuned as this is just the beginning of the season.  I have many more motorcycle trips planned this year!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Horizon Unlimited Traveller's Meeting - Virginia

The 2015 riding season has begun!  My first trip of this year was to the Horizons Unlimited Traveller's Meeting near Appomattox, VA.  The HU meetings are gatherings of like minded souls that like to travel internationally by motorcycle.  A normal group of people we are not!  The weekend was filled with several trip reports ranging from Mongolia (a favorite among us for some reason) to China to the Middle East.  I did not present at this meeting but plan on presenting at the October meeting in Stecoah, NC.

We were just a few miles from the Appomattox Court House where General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant.  This weekend was the 150th anniversary of the surrender.  At times we could hear cannons in the night while laying in our tents.  There were re-enactors on the site re-enacting the events of 150 years ago.

The camping area
A class on travel photography

It was a great weekend and I got to reunite with some old friends that I have not seen in years.  One had ridden around the world on his motorcycle since I saw him last.

There will be more events and weekends coming up soon, so stay tuned and check back often!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

ADV Old School Fall Rally

The ADV Old School Fall Rally was held between October 16 and 10, 2014 in Tellico Plains, TN.  The weather could not have been better!  It was a great weekend to see old friends and ride the great roads of eastern Tennessee.

The banner welcoming us to the campground.

The rally is held each year at the Cherohala Mountain Trails Campground.  On Thursday night just a few of us showed up with the majority arriving Friday.

Cherohala Mountain Trails Campground

 On Friday I took a long ride through east Tennessee.  I rode to Reliance, TN which is basically a gas station / post office.  It's kind of a landmark for motorcyclist in the area.

Reliance, TN

The rest of the weekend was spent reminiscing about rides taken this past year and plans for next year.  The Old School rallies are my favorite rallies of the year.  They are small (generally less than 50 people) and more like a gathering of friends than a rally.

Doin' what we do at these things
My campsite

 On Sunday I packed up and rode home in beautiful weather.  This will probably be my last event of the season.  I already have some plans for next spring so stay tuned!

Packed for the ride home

Monday, October 6, 2014

ADV Nottarally

The annual ADV Nottarally was held October 2-5, 2014.  I rode up on Friday October 3.  Despite having organized camping, meals, rides, t-shirts, stickers, etc. this is not a rally.  Hence the name "Nottarally" does not make sense to some.  Those of us that are "initiates" understand the reasoning behind this name and we prefer to leave it esoteric.

Packed and ready to go.

I left on Friday and got to the site in Del Rio, TN before the rain began to fall.  The rain was predicted, but it was supposed to be a couple of bands and then move out.  Friday night a third band moved through to our surprise.

Set up and ready for the rain.

Thanks to a few volunteers we had a hearty breakfast and then most of us hit the road or trails to ride the day away.

Volunteers cooking up a high protein breakfast of bacon and eggs.

Riders getting ready to get dirty

I had a great campsite with a little stream running behind the tent.  During the rain I just laid in my tent and read my Kindle.  I really enjoy the sound of rain an a tent or the sound of a stream nearby.

The stream behind my tent
As predicted the temperatures dropped on Saturday night and we woke up to a chilly Sunday morning.  Some people broke camp fairly early and had to ride as far as Pennsylvania or even upstate New York.  I'm not sure but I think someone mentioned that we had visitors from our neighbor to the north, Canada.

I arrived home before noon and took a well deserved shower and took a much needed nap.  I don't know how many more weekends I will be able to get out this season.  There is one more event I know of in two weeks, but it seems that fall has arrived early (and I am getting old).

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Weekend in Cruso

I spent September 19 - 21 at Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground in Cruso, NC.  There was no real reason, I just needed to get away and get a little tent time. There is not really anything exciting to report about this trip but on Saturday I did have a great ride in the Smoky Mountains.  Here are some photos from this past weekend.

Riding on the Blue Ridge Parkway
Balsam Lake

View of the Smokies near Devil's Courthouse               

Packed up and ready to ride home on Sunday morning
I do hope to get out a couple more times this year before winter sets in.  Check back often!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Horizons Unlimited Eastern Traveler's Meeting 2014

The Horizons Unlimited Eastern Traveler's Meeting was held September 4 - 7 at the Iron Horse Motorcycle Lodge in Stecoah, NC.  This is an annual meeting of international motorcycle travelers.  It consists of three days of presentation covering "how-to" and reports on trips taken.  Some folks are there that have never done long distance motorcycle travel and others have been on the road for years.  I gave my presentation on a 2008 trip I made to Alaska.

My bike and tent at the Horizons Unlimited Traveler's Meeting

There was a little rain, but since most the events were held indoors we were not bothered.  Iron Horse is a fantastic venue for such an event.  The food is also great!  The highlight of the culinary offerings is the prime rib on Saturday night.

The evening fire at Iron Horse.

Prime Rib dinner at Iron Horse.

It was a great week and it inspired me to reactivate this blog.  I had suspended this blog due to political considerations while I was overseas. 

Here are a few more photos from the week.

Tent city

Lots of bikes

A beautiful setting in the Smoky Mountains

I should have another posting in couple of weeks.  Fall is approaching and that is some of the best motorcycling weather in my part of the country.  Stay tune!