We started out from South Orange County, CA on Tuesday morning, August 3rd. Weather was looking good, and I was "praying" for no rain in Sturgis when we got there. Unfortunately, my prayers were answered...get to that later.
Out on the bike at 5am to Barstow to meet up with HarleyMan, Debrajo's main man. DebraJo couldn't get the time off, so she was flying in to Rapid City on the 7th. I had no back up on this trip. Just two dudes against me. Not cool!
We meet up with HarleyMan (aka Richard) in Barstow around 7:30am, eat breakfast, get our lottery tickets (oh, well, just me!) and on our way through the Nevada Desert in August. Nice. Not. By the time we get to Mesquite, it's over 120 degrees! We stopped at McDonald's for some water and I begged to just camp in McDonald's. I don't know why we didn't pack water? Who needs water riding a motorcycle through the DESERT?!
We survive and enter Utah and make a quick stop into the Zion Harley Dealer. Water! I notice how late it is: 4:00 pm. I'm thinking, wow, we are lagging. Duh. Forgot the time zone change. I was delirious from the heat. Forgive me.
Stop for the night in Beaver, UT. (Ha Ha! I said "Beaver"). We stay at The Beaver Lodge which was quaint and very reasonable. There was a little cafe a few buildings down where we could eat dinner. We check in, get unpacked, shower, and ready to go eat. WHAT? Thunderclouds. I'm actually happy for a little rain. Relief from the heat we had. But no...............Really? It's hail! Now if anyone here knows Lucky, he does not like to walk, not even the few buildings away to the cafe. So we ride the bikes, in the hail, two buildings away, to the cafe to eat! Man, that hail hurts. I'm ready for a beer! Wrong. Forgot I was in Utah. The kind waitress tells me "we have no alcohol, but I can get you a root-beer!" You could only imagine the look I gave her.
The next morning was a little chilly. Well, to me it was! The boys were acting like they were having hot flashes. Don't care. It got up to 90 degrees and I still had my chaps and leather jacket on. Go ahead, laugh at me. I'm used to it.
The trip through Provo, UT was actually very pretty. We were going to try to go East towards the mountains, but there was an ominous black cloud. So we kept going North to Wyoming. We ended up staying on the 80 and stopped in Rock Springs, WY for the night. Visited the Flaming Gorge Harley Dealer. Talked to a man from New Zealand. Now that was an experience! I didn't understand a word he said. We just laughed and nodded our heads. Damn Kiwis. (That was for you, Boof!)
That night we needed a drink, since we didn't get one in Utah. Went to a bar that was recommended called "Porky's". Good country music and Bud Light. But we were so tired, we didn't party long. Got hungry, though! Decided on KFC. Did we ever make a scene there! Kept teasing the poor young lad working there and Lucky finally gave him a tip! Maybe we were too tired AND a little too much beer! You know the patrons were thinking "typical Bikers".
Thursday, we were very lucky dodging those thunderstorms through Wyoming. Everytime we saw a dark cloud, we would stop, check the map and change course. As long as we were going North or East, we were heading the right way! We started on the 191 and I was freezing! This time, so were the boys. We stopped at a corner store (which was the only building around for miles) and asked for some directions to make sure we were on course. I'll tell you this: people in Wyoming are the most helpful and friendly. Everyone we talked to would tell us which way to go for sightseeing and which way was safe, etc. etc. Good folks in Wyoming.
We left the 191 and took the 29 East and that was beautiful. It also started to warm up a bit. Then to the 789 and had lunch at McDonald's and a family there told us to take the 16 and go visit a city called Ten Sleep. Ten Sleep got its name by being ten sleeps (nights) between the Great Sioux Camps and the Platte River to the south, and the northern camp located near Bridger, Montana. Looked more like a biker town to me! After getting gas and water in Ten Sleep, we rode through Buffalo. Did I see any buffalo? No. Lying town name. Finally got to the 90 and hit Gillette. But we still had energy and decided to ride for another hour into Sundance. I'm glad we did. It was nice small town and we stayed at the Bear Lodge. Walked across the street (didn't have to look both ways as there was no traffic) and went to a bar called the Turf Bar & Lounge. The bartender-cook-liquor store guy was great. Yep. He gave us our drinks, made our food, and tended to the drive up liquor store! What a great employee!
Finally Friday morning, the day we ride into Sturgis. Bikes everywhere! Got to the Buffalo Chip and our Cyclefish Camping Area that was saved for us. It was hot! Why did I pray for no rain? Set up tents and got beer and ice. Now is the waiting game. Waiting for all our CycleFish friends to show up! But they wouldn't be with us until Saturday, so our job was to guard the CycleFish camping area. By bedtime, Lucky and I are exhausted and Richard is sick of the Sturgis traffic and heat. Richard wanted DebraJo by his side! Lucky and I go into our tent for the night and a huge wind comes up. I'm thinking tornado, but what do I know? I only know about earthquakes! Our stupid tent zipper breaks. Looking back now, it's funny: Lucky was trying to use duct tape to fix it. Didn't work. So now he's taking out his knife and making holes and getting string so he can sew it together! Not working. Finally, we get our tarp, thread it to the outside of our tent and hold it down with our cooler full of beer and ice! Time to finally sleep....in Sturgis!!
My next blog: "Being in Sturgis".
More pictures in Lucky's Road to Sturgis Album!!!