In This Issue
- Attendees Needed for Rally Site Choice
- How about a Campout / Ride?
- Where’s Captain Kirk?
by our roving reporter, Randall Eggert
Martin Regional Library, 2601 S Garnett at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 9. Somewhere in the bowels of the conference rooms.
I need to get input on what is necessary in a rally grounds. I have five rounded up, each one is not perfect. Some may be dismissed rather quickly, but I’d druther not make the decision to upset everyone myself.
Jeff Hill and I did a ride to the Kansas Land Of Oz rally and talked about planning a long weekend to ride to Arkansas, stay in a park, and explore the local roads by day and sit around the fire by night. Wanna go?
Key personnel who I wished to discuss the rally with did not show. Otherwise, I did learn what images I can put on my computer and then use the overhead that shows a totally washed out image. Fortunately the pictures of the sites were projected well.
Love’s Lookout Picnic – East Texas BMW Motorcycle Club – May 16
Got the RT ready, packed it lite, just a one day jaunt down and back and was planning to leave by 6, but didn’t make it until 6:15. I looked at the clock rolling up the street from the house. The weather wasn’t promising, as a full overcast, moisture in the air, but not falling and about 62-64 degrees. Where I really made time was passing I-40 going south toward Paris by being on the Indian Nation Turnpike. All of Oklahoma’s pikes have a BMW rated speed limit of 75.
I used every bit and a little more. Having put on a new rear tire the prior week, I didn’t feel apprehensive when I hit a moderate rain approaching the Hugo exit. Fortunately it only lasted about 10 minutes. Now, how far do I push this machine after the LOW FUEL comes on? As the display shows the bar disappearing into a triangle, and then it slowly vaporizing, I remembered there is still a gallon left after the range hits 0. I continue on. I know there is that Phillips station before crossing the Red River at the casino is just about 15 miles further, and I can make it. Phew! 6.37 gallons. See! I had over a half gallon. The remainder of the trip is on the fine, wide 2 lane, but 70 mph roads that Texas is so famous for. The last jaunt is down a bit of Interstate and get off again in 3 miles to go south on T-49. Woah! That’s a toll road. I guess that is why it has a “T” prefix. I flip around and proceed to go down US-69 into Tyler. Awww gee, this is slow. It has also cleared up and is warming up too. Hey! It’s Texas.
On the outskirts on the other side of Tyler, the GPS counts down the miles to the overlook, and I start looking for a place to grab something to take with me. I pull into a Subway. Run into another BMW rider who offers me ½ of his footlong, so all I have to do is to purchase an overpriced drink that he’ll even carry for me.
The ‘right down the road’ turned to about 6 miles. Long way without earplugs. This place is an elaborate highway rest stop with historical markers, overlooks for the change in terrain that allows one to look some 30 miles to the east, and something that goes on below, but I don’t go there. Beemer bikes are there in force. I’ve been told that they’ve been having lots of rain also, so the crowd is less than 60. All right, that means I’ll get something from the door prizes. I find out my meal benefactor is an associate dean over tech at a junior college in the area. Heat and Air, electronics, welding, power plant education. We get along great, hate what the government is attempting to pull, etc. His wife and daughter are there to, but have to leave as they have an appointment with a horse. Also there are the Jackie and Paul Mulhern, stopping by on their way from San Antonio. One of the common discussions was the amount of rain they have already received. That Saturday was great!
I really didn’t need to buy anything. (well, I didn’t, actually), as someone was roaming the crowd offering brats and other goodies. A controlled commotion, some quick announcements and distribution of the door prizes. Your name gets called, you go up and select what you want of what’s left. Good deal.
Things are being wrapped up, so I pop back on the bike and head back north after removing a long sleeved shirt and stuffing it in the pannier. Ten, twelve miles later, T-49 shows up again, and I dart on to avoid going through central Tyler. Basically a really nice two lane with about 6 exits and entrances that goes around the periphery of Tyler. I go under some structure with antennas and cameras so I guess my picture was taken so if my Oklahoma Pike pass don’t work, they’ll send me a bill. I’m still waiting.
The trip north is a mirror image of coming down. I don’t think I’m gonna get to Oklahoma before I need gas, so I push it to within several miles of the border before finding a Valero to tank up at. 6.72 gallons. Ooooh, a bit closer to fumes! I know that I can do the rest of the way without filling up again. Warmer now, but still comfortable, the miles pass under the setting of the cruise and my butt doesn’t complain until after Okmulgee. I pull into my driveway at 6:30 p.m. 636 total miles. The following day I get out and fill the bike up again. Just a partial fill, but with the headwind out of the south and cooking on the Indian Nations, the quick calculation was at 52 mpg. Better than the 42 & 43 for the prior 2 fill-ups.
Land of Oz – KC BMW Club – May 29-31
It was raining on Friday. Let’s not go today. OK. Tomorrow? OK. Jeff Hill and I meet up at QT on 161st North and US-169. No, make that Oologah. Another overcast day with the temps in the mid-60s. We head into the north wind, but the identical Biarritz Blue, ’08 BMW RT just punch through the air, ‘cept Jeff’s is clean. I like Mr. Hill’s mindset, lets keep off the interstate and run up this road, and come back on a different road. I can deal with that very well. Ain’t much traffic on Saturday, I think I see one official Kansas vehicle, but we’re flowing with traffic, so generate little interest. Approaching Osawatomie, Jeff indicates a time to fill up. Good thing, as I started out the morning with 60 miles already on the clock. We pull into a Sonic and use there picnic tables for ordering and eating, pull out the maps, and re-assemble to head over to get gas. I don’t pull out my Phillips card very often, but Jeff likes there premium. I tell him another couple of members prefer Exxon’s premium for their exotic qualities. As we approach K.C. outskirts, I see him in the right hand lane, looking to make a right turn on the expressway. My GPS has a different course in mind, perhaps due to the ‘avoidances’ I’ve plugged into it, and stay in the left lane going straight. Since I’m in front, he gets the idea and ignores his.
I later wonder if his idea wouldn’t be better, as we’re going down a boulevard with a number of lights and traffic. Fortunately, this peters out and becomes a country ride, making all right time. It takes us right into Leavenworth. The word that Col. Potter used on Maj. Winchester to get him to see his way. Winchester didn’t like the idea of ‘living’ in Kansas. We go right by the old structure, with signs all over it stating not to enter. No problem. We get dumped out on a new 4 lane that has barricades on it for us to follow the old existing 2 lane country lane at 40 mph. It goes right up the hill, over dale, with driveways on both sides and curves. I found it delightful. We don’t have much further to go, so why complain. After about 10 miles of this, we get to the blockaded other side of the 4 lane and resume on our way. Now I’m ignoring my GPS to turn on these little, unmarked country lanes, as a short cut to the rally grounds. If I slowed down, I might be able to make one of these turns. I think Jeff finally figures to heck with me and does a U turn and takes one of the routes. This is really nice. High ground, a small lake in the middle, grassy all around, the quiet camping off to the left (cemetery). We run around the road to see the field events taking place. With the ground this squishy, I’m surprised they are carrying it off. Still, awards for individual’s skills were presented later.
The main camping area was on top of a knoll, surrounded by the single lane road, with RVs around the circumference. Some of them belonging to vendors. We park where we think we will camp, and go visit the vendors. Coffee vendor, slurpee vendor, sparkly hat vendor, artsie vendor. LED lights for your bike vendor. Left over Girl Scout Cookie vendor. We pony up $4 each.
Returning to the bikes, we change from boots to shoes and casual and set up the tents. The fellow next to us is from the Detroit area on his 1150 RT and another guy is on his Suzuki twin for just scootin’ around bike. Long distances he uses his K1200 which sucks more gas, but has a cruise button.
In talking with some of the club members, we find Atchison is as happy with the club as they with the city. The city mowed the park (and closed it for the event) and also sprayed for bugs prior to our arrival. So far, I haven’t found my token tick. There were trams there to haul attendees to showers and downtown to shop and look around. Since we got there after 3, most of these had already been done. We also heard Friday was wet there also. Still in the 60s with overcast, but it was dry. Lacygne State Park had lost them for lack of maintenance and cleaning up. All night you could hear the power plant. Everyone was happy with the move. Attendance at the ceremonies was 232. Found another friendly face, Marcus. Trish asked were Dave was. The oldest rider was only 83. Saw his bike, but not Dave.
There were a couple of Harleys there, about as many as other brand X models. Looking around the field of bike, were basically all BMWs. Some fellow cobbled together a R-60 looking bike, no Earles forks, with a diesel 10 hp stationary engine and a variable speed pulley drive system attached to the chain final drive. Looked it up on the web, a recoil start, 10 hp engine.
Turning in after a while at the bonfire, Jeff pondered putting in his earplugs, but found at 10 p.m., the place was dead quiet. Maybe we were in quiet camping after all.
Breakfast was obtained from the girl scouts for a contribution to the cause. One of the cooks (a local hardware store owner) asked if I was from the Health Department after watching me take pictures of their cook gear with my camera. No, just getting ideas. It actually looked very similar to our club’s early rallies where propane powered about everything. Jeff was lucky, winning two chairs from Engles, giving one to me. He didn’t have to run to Walmart to get one. I in turn gave one to the fellow from Detroit who was interested, and I told him to contribute to the Girl Scout breakfast kitty as I didn’t have my wallet to contribute with, when I did breakfast. We made a deal.
Packing up, the ground cloth and my knee were damp from being in contact with the soil, but got everything put away in Bristol fashion. We came up US-169 and whatever else connected us here, so we’ll go home via US-75 to see a different part of Kansas. Fortunately it warmed up from the 58 at the campsite to about what it was yesterday coming up.
Sunday morning, not much happening. Got the Senas running. I turned on to I-35 for a short 20 mile stint and had to slow down after merging on at 80+. The GPS showed a place we could get off and kind of parallel the interstate. Yeah, it would be slower, but more interesting and less busy. I took the exit. After accelerating across the overpass, I then realized this little road was gravel. I slow down and ask Jeff how he feels about his RT on gravel. No biggie. We resume and within 3 miles we’re on the section of asphalt that parallels I-35. I’m right. Nobody is on it.
Jeff has his coffee filtering through him and we stop in Burlington for a rest and fill up. His computer has been reading that his bike is getting 6 to 8 mpg better than mine, so we’ve been running side by side for the last 226 miles so it is time to find out how much more my bike is consuming since I’ve got so many more miles than he. He puts in 6 thousands less than me. I think his computer is a bit optimistic.
The fellow from Detroit told us about a great Chinese buffet in Atchison that was good and had a very reasonable price, so we have that in our minds as we hunt for a place for lunch. On the west side of Independence, we find such a place. The parking lot is loaded, so, we do too. More than $7 each, but better than a burger with fries and a Coke.
I’m now in familiar area, being raised in Bartlesville. As we roll through Dewey and Bartlesville, I start counting the traffic lights we go through. Nine. Bartlesville built two of them to satisfy Walmart, standard, and Superstore. The crossing light at the high school in Dewey I didn’t count.
We split up at OK-11 where it turns to the airport from US-75 north of town. We discussed having a weekend ride to Arkansas, setting up camping over there and having some fun on the roads to get away. Another location for the NEO Rally site will also be inspected before the next meeting. Both reasons to come to the next meeting to find where and when we’re going to do these things.
All in all, I found the new location of the Kansas rally a Win Win and look forward to going next year with the weather is a bit more cooperative. The stories about those who showed up and the tick farm seems to be a thing of the past.
Ramblings of a Retired Guy
5/9 – The Ridings of the club started out a wash. Showed up at QT East and filled the tank and parked to wait It is interesting watching others in and out of the parking lot. Had about 3 minutes of rain so I snapped on the helmet to keep myself dry. I had failed to bring MOA Mileage Contest applications, but that’s OK. No one showed up anyway. After a polite period, I headed out and stuck another 60 miles on the odo, as it was in the low 70s and the sun wasn’t turning my Stitch into a sauna.
Speaking of MOA’s mileage contest. I’ve heard several complaints about they (MOA) not stretching the contest to more months. I think everyone knows the answer, but in my opinion this process of 6 months gives everyone in this country a fair shake of making everyone’s riding season equally long, thus everyone has that equal chance of being 1st, 2nd, 3rd, or average in the annual awards. I’m sure the guy in Hawaii can ride about every day of the year, along with those in Florida, Texas, Arizona, and Southern California, among others. I am curious how Hawaii gets an Interstate highway system when it doesn’t even connect island to island, much less another state. Probably something to do with Federal Highway Funds. Alaska doesn’t have any “I” highways. Anyway, I’m regressing. I’m somewhat envious of those in colder climes going out with snow or frost on the ground. I think I know of a couple of ‘Rounders’. Have met several die-hard Harley riders who ride year-round. I better stop.
Dropped by BMW of Tulsa and queried about their annual Oklahoma ride. It, like MOA’s contest, isn’t available until Memorial Day and goes to Labor Day. Just a couple more weekends and I can find out more about it. Like now, since it is now June!
Older Garmin® devices no longer holding updates? My Garmin® powers up with a copyright date of 2011. I do have some trip logs from it dating back to June 2010. The issue is when the device was manufactured, they put enough memory in it to store the software and data that was available at that time. The data has grown. Garmin® handled the updates as well as they could without telling you the device was out of space and you had to buy a new one. My annual update a couple of years ago had me choose parts of my original configuration (maps) to load onto my GPS. So, I lost Canada. Routes plotted to Alaska or Montreal could no longer be calculated. (Makes me wonder how I got to Nakusp, B.C. several years ago to the rally there.) Most of the Garmin® models I’m aware of have a plug in memory port for a microSD/SDHC chip. The 4 gig chip I added to mine did nothing to supplement the 1.8 gig device’s capacity on updates, but there it was. Starting hearing about people managing to utilized these extra micro cards to expand the devices’ maps back to their original coverage. Dr. McBratney used a set of instructions found on the Zumo® forum to get his Zumo back to covering everything it originally came out with. I went to the POI Factory web site to copy instructions for updating my Nuvi®. I think there was one location in the instructions where I had to venture a bit further to accomplish what the writer was telling me to do, but in the end, I was successful. All the instructions involve treating your device as hard drives and files, and manipulating the data that is out there. The re-installation of data from Garmin® went successfully on the external microSD chip, then some files have to be copied from it to your device’s internal storage, and other files renamed. Yes! THE POTENTIAL OF DISABLING YOUR DEVICE IS POSSIBLE. I deleted all the data on my internal device. It still worked, but had no maps and the GO TO function didn’t know the name of a single location. Upon copying the data back on to the device, it returned to normal. Renaming the files per the instructions opened the magic of all this work restoring all the original maps the Nuvi® had on it when purchased. I’ve tested going to a city in Canada, or crossing Canada to get to Alaska. It all worked. Magellan®, DeLorme® and TomTom® I know nothing about. I know Chuck has a DeLorme® head unit which plugs into his laptop PC. Of course, you guys with Smartphones can go anywhere in the world. The updates occur at the Mapping sites’ providers.
Bold New Route
Tulsa World says William Shatner, Trekkies remember Captain Kirk, will be motorcycling on OK-66 this summer as his lifelong dream of traveling across the U.S. on a motorcycle. I guess he will be doing his own version of Irish comedian / actor Billy Connelly when he did the same thing several years ago on a trike and the journey was broadcast on PBS. Shatner at 84, will be riding this, from Rivet Motorcycles.
I think there is a V-8 hidden under the bonnet. Hope the radiator’s air goes under the machine instead of directly to the rider. Otherwise it’d be great for Wisconsin in winter! Go to the site for more information on Bill and the ride. Big ½ page writeup in the June 2nd edition of the Tulsa World on the event. He’s skipping Tulsa and overnighting in OKC.
Take a peek at this Google Map. One fellow on the IBMWR shared blog created a map of all the locations of the National MOA rallies. Those in the east were thinking a disproportionate number of rallies were being held west of the Mississippi. Upon completion of this map, he found out he was incorrect.