'The Ride', 2017 version
If you have followed my travels and/or adventures at all, you know that each year I've tried to take one 'big ride.' These rides have included three trips to Alaska, one to Fort Saint John, a Colorado and New Mexico portion of the Continental Divide Ride, one to Maine by way of many states with a turn-back in Maine, and two years ago, a ride to pick up three missing mid-western states, Iowa, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Last year I didn't do a 'big ride' as my wife and I took a two week vacation trip to Ireland (you can read about that non-motorcycle trip on the TRIPS page.)
So anyway, this year, 2017, I intend to finish off the remaining seven continental states that I have not ridden in. I once thought about flying out to New Jersey and borrowing a buddy's bike; that wouldn't do though, as I've ridden from home to all the other 42 states. If my travels ever take me to Hawaii, I'll rent a scooter and add the 50th, but it is not on my bucket list. So back to the plans for 2017.
School is over for the summer on June 1, this year so I can get an early start, Tuesday the 6th. For once I'm not going to plan my entire trip on a day by day basis with motel reservations made in advance. I decided to take the slabs from my house to Cherokee just to save time. I'll take more time coming back. Why Cherokee, NC? Because that is the start of the Blue Ridege Parkway. Friend Colorado Chuck and I rode most of the center section of the Parkway but I want to do the entire length. And when I reach the northeastern end of it, I'll pick up the Skyline Drive and take that on further northeast. Once I've finished Skyline Drive, I'll clip the corner of West Virginia at Charles Town and check it, Maryland and Delaware off on my way to a freind's place in New Jersey. From there it will be a matter of a loop from his place to 'far away places' like Rhode Island, Massechusets, and Connecticut. I will try to visit some friends on Maryland's east coast in Easton on my way to New Jersey. Then it will be a simple matter of turning around and pointing the front tire west, taking whatever route happens.
Fast forward to June 25,2017. I arrived home today from this trip, the final seven states checked off! I'll update this page with photos and more about the ride, but for now, IT IS DONE! Where next I've been asked? I have no idea, just need to decompress from this ride (I came back by way of OKC, Denver and Durango, adding about a week to the trip.)