Author Topic: C14 Ride Report--IBA Solar Eclipse Gold SS1K and BB1500  (Read 815 times)

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Offline VP01

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C14 Ride Report--IBA Solar Eclipse Gold SS1K and BB1500
« on: August 28, 2017, 08:09:58 pm »
Herein lies the saga of my IBA sojourn to see the mid-day sun fully obscured from the skies of eastern Tennessee--the good, the bad, the lessons learned, and the pride of ownership that comes with a journey completed and a tale to tell, all purchased at the price of persistence, self-reliance, effort, and luck.

Note: To meet COG posting size restrictions (this is long, yeah, I know, too long) I’ve had to post a pared-down version. Those thirsting for all my droll bon mots can find the complete ride report posted over at ADVRider Feedback welcomed, snark ignored.

Note 2: Also, in the event there are other Connie riders who share an interest in LD riding, I’m in the Northeast region of COGdom. Let me know if such an interest exists, and we’ll see what Folie à Deux can be arranged. Hmmm, been looking at a run around the Great Lakes before winter. I wonder…


IBA Solar Eclipse 1000 Rides

Notice of the IBA Solar Eclipse rides arrives shortly after the resolution of some medical issues. Once I’ve rediscover my resolve and decide I am as physically recovered as I am going to get, I decide Yes sir, this is the ride for me. Who cares if my butt is more olio than iron? Who cares if the bike isn’t fully farkled? Who cares if invertebrates have greater planning skills than I? I’m going riding!  Detailed planning be damned—it’s for sissies anyway!

Well, not exactly. I’m certainly more OCD than cavalier, so proper eclipse viewing glasses are obtained, a generally proper route with timing intervals and gas stops is configured, proper gear and accessories are organized and packed, bail-out contingencies considered, and a decision is made as to which ride to attempt. I elect to go for the Solar Eclipse 1000 Gold, which requires, in addition to 1K+ total miles, that I ride at least 300 miles to view the eclipse and that I view it from an area of totality (where the view of the sun will be totally eclipsed by the moon). The band of totality (locales where the sky view will show a total eclipse) is about 70 miles wide and will cut across eastern Tennessee, just south of Knoxville. Good! Then that’s where I’m heading. It‘ll only take about 760 miles to get there, so tack on another 250 miles after the eclipse and the ride is in the bag. What could be easier? Hey, come to think of it, since I haven’t done a LD ride since 2015, why not double down on dumb and shoot for a BunBurner ride? Yeah that’s the ticket! So, as departure date and time approach, I have it in my head to do the Solar Eclipse Gold ride, turn around post eclipse, and use the return mileage to complete the BunBurner. Easy-Peasy! What could go wrong!

Reality Dawns

My rides start at 2:30 am on the Palisades Interstate Parkway Sunoco station in Tappan, NY. I awake a bit late, take my time getting to the station, and arrive at the latest possible time that I feel will allow me to be successful. Nonetheless, my SPOT tracker is tracking, and although clumsy and haphazard, I’m able to take a photo of my starting gas receipt next to my odometer, locking in my start time and mileage. This photo, for redundancy and security purposes, I then email to my email addresses. My lack of practice, photographic, smart phone, and detailed planning skills begins to intrude on my plans. I’m pretty lame at this and a planned 15 minute max/stop is now taking 20 to 30 minutes. Not good. I step on it, but know making up time is really a myth as there is no real way to recreate time already lost. You can only do so much to close ranks temporally, so proper accounting and cushioning for time in your initial planning is the only real way to go.  Oops.

Still the ride progresses well and I have not lost hope yet, though it is still early. Subsequent gas stops yield continuing technologic clumsiness, and in order to increase photographic legibility I take greater pains with each receipt, adding to my stop times. Similarly, half the gas pumps I stop at fail to print a receipt, necessitating that I go inside and stand on line to get my receipt, further increasing my already too slow stop times.

It’s a beautiful day, the bike is humming, and I still believe I can make it to the totality on time. That is, until I hit traffic, road work, a motorcycle only detour putting me on Rt. 11 (Lee Highway) for a stretch (prophetic-you’ll see), and Rt. 81/40/75 and Knoxville convergence issues. Now, I’m a bit panicked. I can definitely view the eclipse and still get the regular Solar Eclipse 1000 certificate, but I need to be in the area of totality if I’m to earn the Gold, and time is getting very tight. I press on, knowing that the total eclipse starts at 2:32 pm and I need to get to Lenoir City, TN by then to get the Gold. As I speed down I75 I find it curious that the northbound lanes seem to be clogging with traffic. Oh well, no time to ponder that now. With minutes to spare I get off for the Lenoir City exit, dive into a Shell station, and document my arrival in time for the totality with a full tank of gas at 2:30pm.

The eclipse is spectacular. The sky is cloudless. My special glasses work. It becomes still. It gets evening-like dark. Do I hear crickets and other night-time wildlife? People cheer as the sun emerges after being totally obscured. The initial glint of light as the sun just reemerges is dramatic, stunning, and stirring. I’m so glad I made this trip and so glad that I’ve now witnessed, first hand, a legendary celestial light show. Time, effort, and money well spent indeed!

Adding the BunBurner

Having planned to submit two rides for IBA certification, nesting one ride inside the other, I decide to travel down to the next exit off I75 to assure that I cover the 1500 miles for the BunBurner. I pull out of the Shell station in Lenoir City just after the eclipse has ended and it is once again full light, and find that traffic is really starting to build. I make my U-turn, head back to I75, fight through some traffic, and get on I75 S, sure that whatever is causing the northbound I75 traffic will soon clear—Sucker!

At this point let me digress to describe the basic BunBurner options just to clarify my thoughts up to this point. Basically, the BunBurner consists of traveling 1500+ miles within a certain time frame. Varieties include: BunBurner Gold = 1500+ miles in 24hrs; BunBurner Silver = 1500+ miles in 30hrs; and BunBurner 1500 = 1500+ miles in 36 hours. Permutations galore exist, but for my purposes, I am aiming for the BunBurner Silver, hoping to complete my 1500+ miles within 30 hours, or by 8:30 am the following morning. 

Now, back to the chase. I get off in Loudon, TN, hit a McDonald’s for a burger and drink, wolf them down, joke with a fellow motorcyclist about how beastly hot it is (he looks fried and comments that he wished it were California so he could at least lane share to get some air), and again note how badly the I75 N traffic is backed up. It REALLY is. It’s now a slow slog just to get to the entrance ramp. There are tons of police around, but all they are doing (actually can do) is observing. I sneak back towards the entrance ramp, cut across a couple lanes of traffic to await my turn to get near the ramp, take advantage of a gap created between a car and a semi, and sit in line as I crawl onto I75 northbound. I eventually make it onto the highway itself, passing more police, who are sitting in their cruisers, no doubt with the AC on.  I’m jealous, but still delusionally optimistic that the traffic will soon break.

Reality, My Cruel, Cruel Mistress

As I slog northward to home, the sun is full on my back, the air is hotter-n-hell, the C14 is now my own personal thermonuclear crotch radiator, and traffic is at a dead stand-still or slight crawl, at best.  I now know why my fellow motorcyclist seemed so haggard and desirous of a flowing air stream—there simply is none—just miles and miles of bumper-to-bumper stand–still traffic, heat, and dead air. Always an advocate of ATGATT, I find my adherence to, and faith in that, now challenged. Images of me riding up the highway, Rollie Free style, belly down in a Speedo fill my mind. That is until I realize that to roll like Rollie and catch the very breeze itself, you need to be able to move forward faster than a slug. And that just ain’t happening here.

My reverie is soon broken by a fellow motorcyclist. We are on a highway bridge over Watts Bar Lake. I’m stopped in the far left lane. He is passing on the very narrow left shoulder. I notice New York plates (prophetic, again), and readily identify with the assertive/aggressive, knuckles-and-know-how, balls-to-the-wall style that is de rigueur in the daily navigation of the asphalt war-zone AKA the New York metropolitan area. He is cutting from shoulder to shoulder and anywhere else in between, but at least he is moving. I lose and regain sight of him on and off, seeing him on the right shoulder, then on left, then in the middle. I eventually lose sight of him altogether, not knowing if he took an exit to hole up for the night or if he made it home in time for cognac and cigars.

While I’m familiar with such driving tactics, I’ve witnessed them both win and fail. A win would be making time with no penalty other than torqueing off a lot of trapped cagers. The fails are more significant, with crazed cagers pulling out in front of lane sharing motorcyclists, cutting them off, trapping them, or worse. A dropped bike and a fist-fight are not on my agenda, especially as I’m sure pistol-hot tempers are flaring all around me, so I elect not to follow his lead and stick with the bumper-to-bumper crawl. After all, the traffic has to break soon, right?

Wrong. The traffic continues. The heat continues. The profuse sweating continues. My cursing continues. That burger that was so tasty and that oh so refreshing cold drink are now repeating on me. I try to belch myself to wellness, but no dice. In all honesty, I’m now assessing my state of health as a priority over traffic or IBA rides as the symptoms of nausea are growing, and they are not alone. I’m also experiencing cramping, and my senses of strength, balance, and coordination are failing. I’m no Dr. Oz, but I’m guessing that I’m experiencing the early stages of heat exhaustion. I decide to get off the road ASAP at the next available safe spot rather than risk becoming part of the road under the wheels of a semi. A truck weigh station appears up ahead and I drive in and head for the nearest available shade.

The truck weigh station is pretty Spartan and there is limited shade. I find what there is near a pre-poured concrete highway divider (Jersey barrier) and gingerly get off the bike.  Forget the center stand, I can barely set it on the side stand. I peel out of my Roadcrafter light, pry off my sweat saturated gloves, open the top case, and take out a bottle of water. The water is quite warm, hot even, and it strikes me how nice a temperature it would be for a shower on a cool morning. Be that as it may, I pour half the bottle on my head, neck, chest and back. It goes on hot but soon evaporates and I can feel it begin cooling me off. The other half I drink as I squat in the shade by the barrier.

I try to get comfortable by the barrier but find it difficult to do so. I take out my bagged bike cover and try to use it as a cushion or backrest. I still can’t get comfortable or catch some rest but snack, keep drinking, and remain mindful of the mosquitoes, biting flies, and ants that seem to call this barrier home. The sun keeps moving in the sky and what little shade I can find keeps rapidly disappearing. Still I rest and hydrate. Strangely, I also keep watching the traffic, thinking that it has to clear at some point, and that when it does, if I’m feeling well enough, I’m back on the road. FYI—the traffic never lets up.
Trucks come in and out of the weigh station. Sometimes they need to park and go in to review matters with the troopers at the station. Where I’ve parked is off to the side, but trucks are driving by and then backing in towards where I am so that they are parked facing out toward the highway. The real estate is getting a little crowded with trucks backing towards me and the bike, so I elect to move us both to some new found shade (I was there from 4:30 to 7:00 pm so the sun had gone far enough West to create a new pocket of shade).  A young man rolls in and anxiously asks if there’s a rest room. I’m so dehydrated that peeing seems a forgotten ritual and advise him to ask one of the truckers. He is informed of a bathroom and finds relief. He tells me of its location before leaving to rejoin the traffic. I only hope I’ll have need of it as I continue to wait and rehydrate.

I watch others come and go (truckers, fender bender victims, and police) and soon enough, after 2.5 liters of fluid, I go to check out the bathroom. It’s a one-man operation, single commode affair, and I find that some poor soul has dropped their sunglasses into the bowl. Ever the Good Samaritan, and not wishing to add insult to injury, I deftly use the handy plunger to rescue said glasses and leave them on the floor to the lee of the throne. I’m sure somebody will come back for them. Wouldn’t you?

Waste soaked sunglasses notwithstanding, the real discovery was that in addition to a bathroom, there was a stocked and functioning drink vending machine.  I peel out a sweat soaked dollar and feed it into the machine. I select an ice-cold water and sit in the shade and nurse it down. I’m feeling OK at this point, at least well enough to move on. I’ve now rested and been out of direct sun for about 2.5 hours and have taken in snacks and 3.5 liters of fluid. I discard whatever trash I have, use the restroom again (but leave the glasses), see that traffic is still a nightmare, recognize that it is still as hot as Hades, and begin to worry over what gear to wear as I certainly cannot afford another bout of heat exhaustion.

Since traffic remains, at best, at a crawl, I debate limiting my gear since high speeds are not an issue. However, recognizing, and hoping, that things may change traffic and speed wise, I elect to stick with the Roadcrafter. However, I will maximize all venting, and open up the leg and chest zippers to their safety zone max. I also usually ride with a mil-spec safety vest, but elect to stow it, as although it is mesh, it may tend to impede venting and therefore, air flow. By 7:00 pm I’m ok with my gear plan, dressed, and leave the weigh station, slowly picking my way home. I’m also loopy enough to think that I can still make it home in time for a BunBurner Silver. Silly me. At this point I still haven’t gone far enough to complete the Solar Ellipse 1000, and the way traffic is backed up, picking up another 200+ miles and documenting it before 2:30 am is not by any means a given.

The chugging home continues. Slowly crawling up I40 to I81 through unrelenting traffic that stops, crawls, accordions open and closed. There are brief periods of 60 mph driving only to be cruelly cut off by stand-still dead stops. Lane movement is variable and unpredictable. One lane stops while another moves, then vice versa without rhyme reason or warning. Trying to keep the bike moving and your feet on the pegs requires gentle slow weaving within one’s lane to stretch distance and buy time for others to move. It also leads to sitting at the margin of your lane when stopped only to receive the unpleasant hello of a semi Jake braking in what seems like mere inches from my elbow. Gets the blood flowing. I have great respect for those magnificent machines and their drivers, but greatly prefer to keep them at the greatest distance possible.

I eventually make it to Kingsport, TN for gas by 10:15 pm. I get back on the congested highway with only 100 miles to go to make my 1000 before 2:30 am. I’m feeling more optimistic now, but still recognize nothing is in the bag or as simple as I once thought it was, and that as soon as I have sufficient mileage, it’s time to find a gas station and officially clock-out on the Solar Eclipse portion of the ride. I am also am now recognizing that the window is closing, if not closed, on the BunBurner Silver. Traffic is not lifting and shows no signs of lifting. I’ll be lucky to finish the Solar Eclipse 1000, so maybe it’s time to rethink the BunBurner options. 

Traffic continues. The road ahead is a river of red tail lights. Trucks are parked all over the side of the road with their flashers on. Any designated rest stops are mobbed. Flashing trucks stop on the shoulder well before and well after each rest stop. Cars piling out of the entrance blocking access for all except the serpentine approach of a motorcycle. I’ve seen this scene repeatedly on my journey home so far, and have elected to stay out of those areas. They seem to represent madness itself.

Soldiering on, by 1:30 am, I’ve reached my arbitrary 1000+ mile goal of 1057 miles. I wanted to exceed 1000 miles by at least 4%, to be sure the C14’s overly optimistic speedometer would not short-change my efforts. Ride mileage is carefully calculated when applying for ride certification, and it is better to have too much, rather than too little due to relying on an inaccurate speedometer/odometer. For example, at this point my odo tells me I’ve traveled 1057 miles. However, in preparing for ride certification, at this point, Google Maps has me traveling 1040 miles. The need to go over and above in mileage is clearly evident, as it is all too easy to tragically lose vital miles due to misleading mechanical inaccuracies. And, above all, the IBA determines ride sufficiency for certification, so best not to be caught short on miles.

It’s 2:00 am. Traffic still is atrocious. I come up on a rest area that is mobbed but not excessively chaotic. I pull in and there are no spots. Knowing things are only going to get worse further down the lane (as people panic about being thrown back out on the highway without finding a spot), I stop early on. I spy a handicapped zone marked off for wheelchair access to a curb-cut ramp up onto the sidewalk. Someone has parked in the “roll up” zone. However, I see I can thread the needle and get the bike up on the sidewalk next to a bench upon which I intend to snooze. I’ve given up on the BunBurner Silver at this point, and recognize that a little shut eye and a safety break may do me a world of good.

Although it’s very early in the morning and has been dark for hours, it’s still hotter than Satan’s G-string. To reduce vulnerability, I rest with full equipment on. I crack the helmet visor, lie down on the bench, but am still roasting. Nonetheless, I patiently relax my mind and body, try to ignore the constant stream of entering cars and passersby, and soon, actually fall asleep. About 45 minutes later my sleep is rudely interrupted by a vehicle across from the bench noisily discharging passengers. 

Oh No! Hippies! After so many miles of hell I have realized all this traffic is the result of everyone and their mother traveling to see the total eclipse of the sun, and now my precious personal space is being callously invaded by hipster’s gung-ho on celebrating that cosmic celestial moon doggery. They pour forth from their van as if it were a clown car force-fed on Ex-Lax. Long haired mescaline man, mega-beard and all, stumbles forth, his wild eyes roll in his head as they adapt to the dark. He trundles off to the toilets with the stiff-legged gait of one affected by neurotoxins. Immediately he is replaced by slender man, all 6 feet and 100 pounds of him. He starts to do yoga poses mere inches from my thankfully shielded face—downward dog, twisted scrotum, weeping abscess, you name it! The up-chuck of emerging humanity continues with hippie chicks, dressed just as I remember them from the Sixties, halter tops, babushkas, prairie skirts—been there, done that, hated it. Who’ll pile out next? Squeaky Fromme? Perhaps Cher herself!  Time to go!

I button up and get the bike off the sidewalk (with clear nonverbal signaling to slender man that the C14 and I regard reciprocal personal space invasion as fair play, irrespective of his yoga) and start down the handicap curb-cut just as mescaline man returns. I fire up the C14, snick it into first, and start out slow and cautious. I do not look back. The remainder of the rest area looks like a scene from the zombie apocalypse. Cars strewn all over, parked anywhere, trucks with flashers on, people flat on the ground or milling about, sitting on cars, curbs, or on the grass. It’s 3:00 am and I’m glad for the sleep. I do feel refreshed, physically tired but mentally alert and on my game, and I’m glad to be back on the road. Amazing what a brief, but good, rest can do for you. Now if there was only something that can be done about the traffic.

I continue North on I81 still battling the same old stop and go traffic, elbow to elbow with semis, pickup trucks, vans and cars. There are a few bikes, but I’ve notice a lot of them have peeled off. It is now 4:00 am and I’m not liking what all this stop and go is doing to the bike. The C14 is hot, the radiator fan is running just about constantly, the battery looks to be draining. Lord knows I can’t get any speed going to help boost RPMs for charging, and I don’t like the way she’s sounding. So, I decide to peel off the highway, which isn’t moving anyway, when I see motel signs. It may be time to punt on the BunBurner. There are a series of motels up and down the road. I stop at one that looks nice. Parking lot is full and there are bikes parked under the front portico. I go inside and wait to be found. Eventually a clerk emerges and lets me know there are no rooms. I helmet and glove up and go on to the next motel. Same story, no rooms. Again I helmet and glove up and start the bike. Doesn’t sound happy and the battery gauge is reading low. All this stop and go and now frequent stops and starts are taking their toll. I go back up to the very first motel off the exit ramp hoping people may have overshot it and taken lodging further down the road. Stop the bike, take off helmet and gloves, and wait for the clerk who is helping another victim of the traffic. Again, no rooms. Anxiously, I go out and start the bike. It starts, but I get a voltage reading of only 11.8 volts. That’s enough. It is cooler now and the bike is running. Time to drive it around in the cool air to cool it down and charge it up. I don’t know where I am really, but I do know what I left on the highway and, at this point, that’s nowhere as far as I’m concerned. Time for an explore.

As I leave the motel, I’m still on the hunt for lodging, having decided that enough is enough, and one certificate for this ride will have to suffice. So, rather than have to repeatedly peel off my sweat soaked leather gloves which now fit tighter than a second set of skin, I do not put them on and stow them deeply within the confines of my Roadcrafter. I know, this is an ATGATT no-no.

I head East passing closed gas stations and another motel that I consider useless judging from the parking lot, and then come to an intersection with Rt. 11, Lee Highway. Remembering the MC only detour, I recall that Rt. 11 sort of parallels I81, so taking it North may not be such bad idea. I turn left and slowly poke along Rt. 11, enjoying a steady breeze for once and raising my RPMs off idle for a change. I’m in no rush and still looking for available lodging as I ride a seemingly happier bike glovelessly along.

I am then passed by two cars with New York license plates, appearing to be on a mission to make time. One of the cars is a Tesla with a custom license plate derisive of hydrocarbon users. I wonder how funny he’ll find that plate if his batteries die in traffic or on this secondary road. The second car is a run-of-the-mill Honda, but the driving style of both is awfully reminiscent of the NY metro area, and I’d be surprised if that Tesla was not chock full of navigational wiz-bangery. I elect to follow them, nothing to lose, and who knows, maybe they’ve found a route that will finally crack this interminable traffic. No time to lose, I throttle up, despite the lack of gloves, and fall in behind.  We run up Rt. 11 for a bit and then the Tesla and Honda signal for a left. This is a construction zone, but I can see this is also an access ramp to I81. Figuring it’s worth a shot I follow and get back on I81. Happy days! The traffic has broken! At last I can make some time, although occasional crawls and disruptions occur. I’m on the road, moving with a seemingly happy bike, and feeling pretty good. My thoughts soon return to the BunBurner ride.

Oh yes, my ATGATT foible. So happy was I to look down the highway and not see a red river of brake lights, it took a moment to realize I am now doing 65 with no gloves on. A get-off on local roads at lower speeds would certainly be damaging to my hands, but a get-off at these speeds—disastrous—I’d have to use both hands to order 3 beers! So, what to do? Not wishing to stop (I’ve done enough of that already, thank you) I elect to try putting them on, sticky though they are, while on the fly. I slow, open my modular helmet, make sure no one is nearby (what a luxury at this point!), and using biting, wiggling, and stretching cajole my left glove on. The right is done using the same technique, but is complicated by slowing due to loss of throttle and fear over compromised braking. I have the space and time to do both gloves successfully, and then close my modular, and thank heavens for being a lucky bastard.

The Road Home

With traffic no longer having a choke hold on me and the C14, we are buzzing north, making good progress. We hit gas stations in Northern VA and Central PA. The early morning sun highlights the great beauty of the Shenandoah Valley, and we race on in through Harrisburg with its morning commuters. This traffic is nothing compared to what we’ve been through and the C14 is burning along in high style. Ever since the break in the I81 traffic, my thoughts have returned to the BunBurner 1500. I know I have a stupid bias against it, but in reality, it is doable, and to me at this point would signify a great deal more than a noneventful BunBurner Gold (750 miles out and back on the super slab in 23 hours and 59 minutes). Not that that isn’t something to shoot for or something I wouldn’t love to do, it’s just that the BunBurner 1500 I’m now trying to complete is special and unique, containing so many challenges, issues, memories, and experiences that it stands singularly distinguished from any of my IBA rides, past or future. No, at this late hour there is only one ride certificate that could remind me of riding through some of the worst traffic I’ve ever seen; prioritizing matters, taking appropriate steps, and keeping my head in the face of heat exhaustion; trusting my powers of observation, intuition, insight, and discernment; being willing to take thorough, calculated risks, and to remain calm and flexible in the face of adversity; surviving the great hippy deluge; putting a plan into motion and seeing it through till the end; and almost as a second thought, working out a plan to see, first hand, a total eclipse of the sun. Not too shabby. A lot has gone into this ride and a certificate I erroneously held in lower regard, may turn out to be one of the most personally valuable certificates I’ll ever earn. Or perhaps not. Every ride is an adventure so you never really know what you’ll get till you in the thick of it. But if nothing else, at least for now, I have a story to tell.

The final stop and end point of my BunBurner 1500 brings me back to the Sunoco gas Station on the Palisades interstate Parkway in Tappan, NY at 11:53am. By my calculations I traveled a total of 1552 odometer miles (and a total of 1535 Google miles) in 33 hours and 27 minutes. Hopefully, all requirements for certification of both rides have been met, and over the next few days the data and documentation are collected and submitted to the IBA wizards.

It’s a relatively short ride home for me from Tappan, NY, and I arrive contented and satisfied. It has been two days to remember, and I’m glad to be back to LD riding after what seems like a lengthy hiatus. I drink some water, have something to eat, and then go to bed for a nap, knowing that I’ll get up soon enough to put the bike away and clean up after myself, maybe.

Final Ride Note

While I think I have met all the criteria for ride certification, that determination can only be made by the IBA alone. It is my job to plan and ride the ride, collect and submit required data, back-up data requests and answer questions, and do anything else to document that I did, indeed, ride the ride. However, only the IBA can certify the ride, and as they say, there is many a slip between the cup and the lip.  Just because I believe I did everything correctly, does not mean that I did. I have just recently submitted theses rides for certification, so to date they remain uncertified. Here’s hoping I did everything right and the rides are certifiable. If not, I still have this story, the memory of adventure, and a solid base to build upon with the lessons learned—can’t ask for much more than that.

Offline Tour1

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Re: C14 Ride Report--IBA Solar Eclipse Gold SS1K and BB1500
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2017, 02:26:22 pm »
I am a relatively new rider but my youth was ripe with overheating junk cars, in NY metro / suburb traffic so I have some habits that avoid traffic jams.

First, when you see that sea of brake lights, get off the interstate.  It could be 20 miles of stop & go before you get another chance to exit.  Most interstates parallel (really intertwine) an older, slower route and you can hop on again at every crossing.  When there's a crossing with no exit you might get a visual on whethe there's still a traffic jam up there.

Second, keep it moving or shut it off.  Idling along at a crawl or stopped is a strain on the cooling system and your clutch/brake/throttle muscles.  Having the burger break was a good move, and it's a great time to consider alternate routes. 

Third, the old routes are hard to follow but they are usually moving even at rush hour.  They also have businesses such as fast food & auto parts.

It's still on my bucket list to spend a couple of hours watching a random movie just to cool off, stay dry, or pass the time with a siesta.  One time I really should have and slid my bike when I might otherwise have been just feeling guilty about not rushing home to the wife.
1987 Concours
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