Saturday, July 13, 2013

The Family Trip to Wisconsin : Day 1&2

My family and I are currently on day two of a three and a half day ride to Lacrosse, WI to see family.  My father-in-law is turning 80 and most of the regional clan is gathering to celebrate.

We left yesterday, in the early afternoon, in truly sunny and hot conditions in the state of Colorado.  For the first time ever, I was trailering my motorcycle to the final destination.  Yep, trailering.

At a fuel stop, somewhere in Nebraska

Being on a trailer, Valencia achieved unheard of sustained speeds for a URAL.  We averaged 70 mph with no issues, Valencia resting comfortably on the trailer, probably wondering why she was on a trailer.  I must admit, the heat of the day (it would peak at 102 degress Farenheit) would have made for miserable riding conditions while following ATGATT.  

I saw plenty of motorcycle riders though, some with gear, most without much in terms of protective gear.

As we weren't in a hurry to get to Wisconsin (we're not expected till Monday evening), we did some touristy stops along the way.  First stop was the Strategic Air Command's Air and Space Museum in Omaha, NE.

 A pretty good museum, specializing of course in the aircraft used by the
Strategic Air Command

 The first thing one sees as one walks in, the SR-71 Blackbird.

 The "Goblin", never deployed, it was apparently going to hang in a B-36's 
bomb bay, and be dropped/launched when needed to provide fighter
escort services to the bombers!

The front entrance to the museum has missiles displays.

We continued driving eastward and soon were pulling off of I-80 and heading south on State Rd 169 to the town of Winterset.  The objective had been to go look at the birthplace of one of my favorite actors of the silver screen: John Wayne.

 John Wayne's Birthplace

Coincidentally, it turns out Winterset, the town where John Wayne was born is also the county seat for Madison County of "The Bridges of Madison County" fame.  In addition, there was a small vintage car show in the downtown area today so it was all bonus tourist stuff.

 I liked this car the best, and while it wasn't a bad turnout, it wasn't 
exactly a great one in terms of vintage car examples.

Madison County Seat

 A bit anti-climatic, here's one of the "Bridges of Madison County"

Cedar Ridge Covered Bridge

Tourist stuff over with, and with night closing in on us, we found lodging north of Des Moines in the town of Ames.  Long day on the road and yet it was done in guilty comfort within the confines of the BMW X5, I could get used to hauling my rig over the long boring interstate slab portions of trips.....

An Iowa Sunset, almost as good as a Colorado sunset.


Unknown said...


Wish RD Happy Birthday for me. You are right on my flight path. I will pass you in 2 days

I was in Omaha on a Sunday and the SEC was closed. Did they allow you "underground" there are silos down there for people to work in case of nuclear attack

Riding the Wet Coast

redlegsrides said...

Bob, if you meant you'll be in the vicinity of Lacrosse, WI in two days, we should try to meet up!

Safe riding and remember to hydrate!

Trobairitz said...

It looks like a great day of driving and sightseeing.

I find that as I get older the thoughts of trailering the bikes a long distance gets more appealing. One can travel a longer distance in comfort and be rested when you get to your destination and be ready to ride.


RichardM said...

I visited the SAC museum in 2008 and your picture of the SR71 is almost identical to mine. That's a nice looking trailer, easy to load and low to the ground. Where's the video of you riding it at >100kph?

Those temperatures seem too hot to ride. I got used to the 40°F temperatures in Barrow and now Fairbanks seems almost unbearably hot.

redlegsrides said...

Trobairitz, getting to one's destination rested vice tired and drenched in sweat......its working out pretty good so far.

RichardM, it's damn hot. One has to wear protective gear but even the vented stuff is pretty much cooking you when the outside temp is near body temp....or above! soaking one's t-shirt helps, for about 15 min.

Unknown said...

Hello Charlie,

Saw your review on the following product "Motoport/Cycleport' Air Mesh Kevlar Riding Gear" posted in Y2009.

I reside in Asia, Singapore. I am interested to make a purchase from them and wanted to get a first hand confirmation from you on the following questions below.
Couple with the long distance between Asia and USA. I wanted to be careful so as not to have too many "ifs".

1. Are you still using the riding gear?
2. How well does it fair in the summer? most of the time we are having temperature around 90F?
3. Any comments you like to add?

Thank you.

redlegsrides said...

hello Ronnie

Yep, still using the gear! It helped me survive a 40 mph+ lowside a couple of months after I got it. All it did was get scuffed up a bit where my shoulder impacted the pavement.

Once temperatures get in the high 80s and above, no vented gear feels "not hot" when stopped. It feels OK when moving because now you're running air over the sweat you built up while stopped! An evaporative vest helps, soaking down your tshirt and riding helps until the tshirt dries, then you have to stop again to soak it. Bottom line: You're going to be hot riding in Singapore with this stuff, but then again, you can always take a shower can't you? You can't really shower away road rash....can you?

Riding my sidecar has induced some less than ATGATT thoughts/behavior when its really hot outside. I wouldn't ride two wheels without being ATGATT though.

Hope this helps