Friday, July 25, 2014

Sioux Falls, SD, July 24

i-29 south dakota
I-29 northbound heading into Sioux Falls, SD
The last leg into Sioux Falls, SD was the roughest. It had actually started out as smooth sailing with the wind at our backs. But by the time we crossed into South Dakota from Iowa, the wind changed directions and was hitting us from the side.

Considering all the stuff Sash had packed on her bike, I was concerned. I mean, I could feel the wind really pushing me hard, and me having to fight to stay on the road. I kept looking in my mirrors to see how she was holding up. And she was right there behind me all the time.

Sioux Falls represents a week of downtime for us. We'll be here until July 31, when head to Mitchell, SD for the pre-Sturgis party at Klock Werks. While we're in Sioux Falls, we get to catch up on our work.

It's a challenge to get up on our marketing business when we're traveling 200-300 miles everyday. We do get some work done in the evenings on those days, but there's just not enough time. I'd rather spend at least 3 weeks at a time in a city, because experience has shown that we get a lot of work done, and we're able to earn more business.

As the schedule is right now, we won't get that long downtime until we reach Boulder, CO in the latter half of August. So while, we're here in Sioux Falls, we have a lot to get done.

The other thing is that we did several consecutive days of Interstate.  That's not something I prefer to do.  But on the other hand, we had to cover a lot of miles fast so that we could have a week to spend in Sioux Falls before we hit the final descent into Sturgis.

As for Sioux Falls, the town looks like most other cities in the Great Plains of the USA. Flat. There are the usual Cracker Barrels, the Kum & Gos, and the Taco Johns.  It has all the amenities of a modern city, just a little smaller in size than my hometown San Diego.  I wish there were more craft breweries, but I did manage to find some good beer bars.

Also while we're here, Sash wants to visit this biker chick shop in town called, "Ride Empowered".  She's been following it on Facebook.

Oh, and if you think Sash is a little late with her social media postings recently, it appears the 802.11 LAN chip on her laptop went kaput.  It won't turn on anymore.  She's been having to do everything on her Android.

Me putting another quart of oil
into Sash's bike
The bridge over the Missouri
River along the I-680
Entering into Iowa from
Nebraska along the I-680
At a rest stop along the I-29 in
Stopping at a Kum & Go in
Iowa along the I-29
Sash took this patriotic photo
of me
Sash still riding strong in the
last stretches
The crosswinds blew fierce
heading into Sioux Falls
It started raining when we got
to our hotel

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Thursday, July 24, 2014

Lincoln, NE, July 23-24

microtel lincoln, nebraska
Arriving at our hotel in Lincoln, NE
Sash and I felt pleased our ride to Lincoln, NE would only be 230 miles from our motel room in North Platte. It somehow made us feel as if we had tons of time to kill before heading out on the road.

We actually had a conference call with a client on our calendar at 11:00 AM. So we packed up our stuff, checked out of the motel, and found a Starbucks in town to set up temporary office.

The call seemed a success in that it took us another step further towards a hopeful contract.

After the call, we met a guy named Rob on a Ducati Multistrada. He was from Chicago on his way to Boise, ID. But he had already been all over the country. Rob does website development work. Somehow, that made me feel more connected to the guy. Sash went on talking to him, and it seemed like the two had burned a good hour.

We rode to the Sinclair gas station across the street, and Sash met a couple on a purple Road King-turned-Electra Glide. Going by the names Sweet Pea and Taz, they run a shop in Hastings called G&D Leathers. They also run their local BACA (bikers against child abuse) chapter.

After they took off, another guy walked over and asked me about my bike. He rides a Goldwing, but was driving this time. He had ridden all over as well.

Later, Sash and I stopped at an Arby's Roast Beef near Mormon Island for a butt break, when a guy walked over and mentioned he owns a Honda ST1300 as well. So, we struck up conversation about our favorite motorcycles.

Even though the ride to Lincoln was relatively short compared to previous days' rides, we didn't get to our hotel until sunset. The time we spent chatting with folks burned up time. But it was fine. Sash's body was getting sore from the consecutive days of riding.

By the time checked into our room, we ordered up some chinese delivery, got some work done, and then hit the sack.

Photos from today's ride. Tomorrow's ride: Sioux Falls, SD

Taking a conference call at a
Starbucks in North Platte, NE
Me with a fellow web
developer from Chicago
This couple leads their local
BACA chapter in NE
Me talking to a guy who asked
me about my bike
Stopped at this Old Chicago in
Kearney, NE for lunch
Sash enjoying a pizza at Old
The Archway, a giant bridge
with a museum inside
Never thought I'd see a BMW
getting trailered
The water tower in York, NE
looks like a hot air balloon

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

North Platte, NE, July 22-23

Lincoln Highway Wyoming
Lincoln Highway (I-80) Wyoming
Lincoln Highway is the first transcontinental highway in the United States, having been dedicated in 1913. Originally it connected Times Square in New York with Lincoln Park in San Francsico.

It was the first memorial to Abraham Lincoln, predating the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC by 9 years.

Since then, it has gone through numerous realignments.

Much of the route Sash and I have been on from Utah to here in Nebraska, has been along the current incarnation of the Lincoln Highway. Four years ago, on my way back from Alaska, I wrote about riding a portion of it along US-93 through Ely, NV.

Evidence of Lincoln Highway's presence can be seen along the entire stretch of the I-80 and paralelling US-30. We've seen bridges with "Lincoln" in the name. There's a Lincoln Memorial Statue between Laramie and Cheyenne. There are restaurants and cafes with menu items like "Lincoln Burger" or "Lincoln Highway Omelette".

But the Lincoln still doesn't seem to have all kitsch and celebrity that Route 66 has. Even though Lincoln Highway predates Route 66 by about 13 years, and it runs a longer distance, it seems to generate less interest. Perhaps it's because it opened up at a time when automobile travel wasn't significant, or maybe because folks preferred to go to Los Angeles instead of San Francisco.

Once Sash and I left Wyoming and entered into Nebraska, the Lincoln Highway leaves the I-80 and continues along the US-30.

There's actually a Lincoln Highway Association that displays a map of all the routes it once ran, and they publish some cool media about the entire length:

We pulled into North Platte, NE on a Tuesday night, with storm clouds rolling in from the north.  It was a really long day, and our bodies were full of aches and pains.  After some tacos and burritos from a nearby Taco John's, we hit the sack early.

Here's photos of our day from Rawlins, WY to North Platte, NE...

Sash met a new friend Stacy
a fellow motorcycle rider
Having lunch at CK
Chuck Wagon in Laramie, WY
The Lincoln Memorial along
the Lincoln Highway
We're along the I-80 near the
Wyoming / Nebraska state line
They apparently live pretty
well in Nebraska
Sash's reflection in the back
of her turn signal
Sash's motorcycle behind tall
grasses in Sidney, NE
A shot of Sash's motorcycle
against Nebraska fields
Our bikes at a butt break in
Sidney, NE
Flies eating the bug splatter off
my bike
This fly held on for 12 miles at
80 MPH until he lost grip
Cabela's in Sidney, NE is big
enough to be its own city
Sash along the I-80 in
Nebraska should be called
The Road Construction State
Sash still misses her sport bike
We met a V-Star 650 rider
carrying as much stuff as Sash
Our bikes at a Flying J Truck
Stop in Nebraska
My Honda ST1300 along the
Dusk over NebraskaIf Darth Vader had married a
biker chick...
Storm clouds coming in from
the northwest

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About Steve

San Diego, CA-based motorcycle rider who likes long road trips, old rustic bars, craft beer, and tough women. Can often be found where there's free Wi-Fi, writing about the mysteries of life. (Read more...)