GasPipe and BigDogAdventures Team Up
April 22nd---24th 2005

Go To for a much better report than is here.

There has been a very noticeable absence of one of my riding buddies (initials: Kevin Sweet) from rides lately-----I was sent this confidential JPEG from a concerned buddy taken in Kevin's front yard-----well you can see what he has been doing-----at least he's getting some ride time in.



Me and Moore Rider were to meet GasPipe at a campground on the castor river in Southern Missouri---but first you have to get there. GasPipe---real name Bruce Crawford has been an internet friend of mine for quite awhile. He has been to Mexico many times and I invited him to come ride with me.
On the way we stopped near Pomona, Illinois (population 23) and found this natural bridge out in the boonies. It a beautiful thing to see and you can walk across it. It is well worth a visit and you only half to hike about 500 ft. to see it.

N37°38.903' W89°20.582'



1st Lie-------there was this girl walking nearby who had a striking resemblence to Shania Twain---she smiled and I stuck my foot in the front fender of my bike do to an impressive "Stoppie". Lesson 3,458---you can't do a stoppie in gravel.

2nd Lie----I was looking down at my GPS and ran over a 57 lb. possum which flipped my bike violently

3rd Lie-----A bank safe the size of a pickup fell out of the sky on me

Well that was what I thought----!!! I hit the ground hard and Moore Rider pulled up and wondered what the heck happened as there was nothing in site ???
He said "wait and I'll help you" !!! Click---got you Big dogA rock about 2" in diameter got flung into my low fender on the 950 and got wedged in there locking my front wheel up solid. I hit the ground hard and was really looking for that bank safe--what the ????? I wasn't sure my ankle wasn't broke as the hard luggage did a number on my foot. I was in severe pain in this shot and thought it was broke--I'm still not sure it isn't.


This could be called the "Big Dog" walk I suppose. Well--------imagine the way Tim Conway walked as the old man on the Carol Burnett show. I was hurtin---I couldn't walk----skip rope--run---jog---or leap tall buildings in a single bound-------but, I could still ride



Gas Pipe finally arrives and immeditately goes to settin up---er---down his tarp as rain was still lingering in the area.




All this--while "MooreRider" soaks up the fire.




We were all up before the crack of dawn Saturday morning and were off for breakfast----we crossed several low water creek crossings on the way on a remote one lane road that I had never been on then ended up at the "Hideaway" pictured below. Great food---population a lonely zero--but people come from miles around.



Ok on to more riding----the riding was great and it was a nice cool 45°, just the way I like it. I was keeping an eye on my GPS cause I have jillions of waypoints of a lot of neat stuff in Missouri------bingo !!!----a waypoint "Cox Spring pops onto the screen. Never been there---found it on some topo mapping software I have and marked it years ago. We went down a narrow gravel road for a couple miles and there she was--right on the money. Now try to do that with a map !!!!



I was riding injured and was trying not to dab my sore foot----so I sat out while GasPipe and Chadd found the end of the trail and Chadd got some air on his 950. 98hp is a lot of hp in dirt.



We rode for miles and miles on one lane beatiful gravel roads making a dozen low water creek crossings. We arrived in Van Buren, Missouri for lunch to ride the "Tram Road". This is a little known old railroad bed built in the 1800's for the growing lumber industry. It runs right against the East bank of the Current river South of Van Buren, Missouri. While all the touristy hustle bustle is on the West side of the river---we rode on the East side. This is the 3rd time I've ridden it and you never see anybody down this old railroad bed. It is so neat.




You can almost see the old steam locomotive a comin' down the tracks.




Shortly we were haulted by a large tree.




I wasn't much help---but the rest of the guys hoisted each bike over the big tree.





A Victory celebration !!!



The railroad bed finally turns into almost a trail and gets rough with very large mudholes------ we crossed probably 15 creeks that flowed into the Current River. It was a very beautiful ride with the large Current River always to one side. I knew a nasty section was coming up and hoped I wouldn't have to dab with my injured foot.





A two fisted drinker---I think he was wishing he was still in Mexico !!




We were all up before the sun came up and hit the road for breakfast in Marble Hill, Missouri. It was just me and Gaspipe as some had other obligations and one who's name I'll not mention on the internet for fear of ridicule rode his KTM 950 (oops) home---said he had to mow the grass. HHHhhmmmmm------mow or ride ?? mow or ride ??? mow or ride???

So me and the Pipe took off -----------there was a bridge, but we refused to use it---stinkin' Missouri bridges--ought to be a law






The nest was bigger than a bathtub and momma was at least 3 ft. long. Daddy was cirlcling above us--we never seen the little ones--but a friend of mine sent me a picture of this nest a few weeks ago and two little heads were poking up out of the nest. I now know what all the fuss is about in eagles. It was an awesome moment and me and GasPipe just stared for a long time not wanting to make any noise or even leave. Such a magnificent bird--I had never been so close.
Go to N37°52.082' W89°47.199' and look up !!!!





This is the levee road where the eagles nest is---and GasPipe is looking up at it.








1st lie: GasPipe got tired of trying to keep up on his thumper and stole my 950---then got stuck in the mud !!!
2nd lie: GasPipe--afraid to ride thru the mud--pushed it for 250ft.--see his tracks ???
3rd lie: You can't do a "Stoppie" in the mud either
4th lie: GasPipe---just toying with Meoni, Sainct and Alfie Cox---- stopped to let them catch up.




There were 3,001 bikers on top of bald knob in Southern Illinois this Sunday afternoon for the blessing of the bikes. It was a chilly 46° and the wind was howling. 3,000 riders in doo-rags, chaps and fingerless or no gloves were standing around freezing and shaking----and then there was me--nice, cozy and comfy after a 200 mile morning ride to bald knob. I couldn't stand to watch it no more--and couldn't stand the noise and left after pie and coffee.

Thanks GasPipe for making it such a great ride !!!!


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