Friday, June 8, 2012

Trip is Done!

I rode on through the mid-west which, as you know, is a lot of flat, straight riding where 500 mile days are easy.

You see a lot of this in Kansas.

Typical downtown in wheat country.

While riding through Dodge City a lady talking on her cell phone almost ran me down.  I was riding in the right lane of a four lane road and she was pulling out of a veterinarian's parking lot.  She was too busy talking on her phone to even check traffic before pulling out into the road.  She never looked in my direction.  Luckily no one was passing me and I swerved into the left lane.  My right pannier missed her front fender by no more than six inches.  I leaned on the horn and looked back at her and she just shrugged her shoulders.  I really hope that call was important. 

About the only stops I made were to get gas.

The next day I made it to Oklahoma.  Northern OK is a lot like Kansas.  I made it into Muskogee and stayed in the Catalina Motel.  The proprietor of this establishment likes motorcyclists.  The room was only $35 and was really pretty good.

The next night I stayed somewhere east of Memphis.  My GPS decided I should experience the wonders of downtown Memphis during rush hour.

The next day I made it home to an empty house.  The frau is away on business in Washington, D.C.

I would like to thank the several thousand bugs that died making this trip possible.

So, that makes eight countries that I have ridden in and I really don't know if I will ever add another.  But...  my frau is trying to get a sabbatical to Germany in the next year or so.  My brother-in-law has offered me his bike if she gets it and I would really like to ride in eastern Europe.   Hmmmmm!  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Almost Home!

I rode 515 miles today and did not mean to.  It took me three hours to find a motel after my GPS decided I should experience the wonders of downtown Memphis at rush hour!  I will probably get home tomorrow and on Thursday I will wrap up this ride report.  It's gonna be weird getting up Thursday with no where to go!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

I'm Officially Out of the West

I have ridden from San Diego to Kansas in three days.  It is hard to believe that I have not take a photo since leaving the Sonoran Desert.  I guess I have spent so long out west that I have become jaded to the beauty.  I did figure out how to use the screen shot feature on my GPS.  After leaving New Mexico I entered Colorado and reached elevations of more than 10,000 feet.  It was nice cool riding.  But from there it was down into Eastern Colorado and Kansas.

It is looking like this trip will come to an end on Wednesday or Thursday.  What a great, exhausting, long, wonderful trip it has been!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

With the frau winging it back to Asheville I got back on the bike and started my cross country trip home.  My first stop was Salvation Mountain at Slab City near Niland, CA.  I had first heard of Salvation Mountain while reading Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer.  Christopher McCandless spent time in Slab City before heading for Alaska.

Salvation Mountain is the work of Leonard Knight.  He bagan painting the mountain with Bible verses and religious art in an effort to acquaint people with his beliefs.  The mountain is constructed of adobe and straw and thousands of gallons of paint.

From Salvation I rode on through the Imperial Dunes and the Mojave Desert.  It was HOT!!!!  While riding through Scottsdale, AZ I saw a bank sign telling me it was 113 degrees.  Later while watching the news in my motel room the weatherman announced that it was a record heat day for June 1.

Along Highway 60 I saw this giant dirt devil.

Then on the Sonoran Desert in Arizona and the famous Saguaro Cactus.

Right now I am in Bloomfield, New Mexico.  I should be home sometime this week, but I am taking the back roads and US highways.  I also do not know what kind of weather I will have to deal with while riding through the mid-west.

Hoover Dam & Las Vegas

The next day we headed for the Hoover Dam and Las Vegas.  I had always thought that Hoover Dam was operated by the Army Corps of Engineers or the National Park Service.  It appears that it is run by a concessionaire.  It is expensive!!!  The tour is $31 and just to see the Visitor Center is $8!  The best view of the dam is from the opposite bridge.

After viewing the Hoover Dam we headed to VEGAS!!  Yeah, baby!  It was my first time in Vegas and I knew I wasn't in Kansas anymore!

We found a motel in the Fremont area of town.  The Fremont area is where Vegas began.  The "strip" is relatively new.  There was a great light show on Fremont Street.

And a lot of live bands and entertainment.

On our second day in Vegas we went to the "strip".

The Luxor

The fountains at the Bellagio.

Caesar's Palace

The next day we headed back to San Diego to put the frau on a plane and spend more time with the granddaughter and her family.

Breakfast at Kono's in Pacific Beach.

Grand Canyon

Disregard the previous post.  I am at a motel tonight with a much better Wi-Fi connection so I will try to update you on the happenings of the last week or so.

The frau and I left San Diego to see the Grand Canyon.  Words cannot describe it!  I found myself taking a lot of panoramic shots because of the vastness of the Canyon.

We stayed in Williams, AZ which is a major tourist stop on Historic Route 66.

The next day we went to Sedona.  It was like an upscale hippy kind of place.  Not really our cup of tea.

I did see this sign at a church.  There's a lot of truth there!

The next day we went back to the Grand Canyon and visited the eastern side of the park.  The views there were even more spectacular!

Next up... Hoover Dam and Vegas!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Payson, AZ

I am currently in Payson, AZ.  Yeah, I had to look it up too.  A lot has happened since my last post, Grand Canyon, Sedona, Vegas, Slab City and Salvation Mountain!  I  have been having problems uploading photos from the hotel Wi-Fis so I have decided to wait until I get home to update the blog.  There I can relax and really explain all the amazing events of this trip.  You can always click the the "Where's Kurt" button on the the right of this post to see how far I have made it.  So until Asheville.... stay safe!