Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Spring Equinox SaddleSore 1,000

This adventure is the last in a series of four 1,000 miles in less than 24 hour IBA challenge rides on each of the celestial events to qualify for the "Four Seasons SaddleSore 1,000" certification.

Full SpotWalla Maps:    BubblerGPS Pro and SPOT

Certified!  Received Iron Butt Association certification for my successful completion of the Four Seasons SaddleSore 1,000 Challenge.  I rode the final SaddleSore 1,000 on March 20, electronically filled using the IBA Premier Member Certification program on March 30 and received certification on April 7, 2015.  IBA Premier Membership...near-instant gratification. 

I completed all 4 of the Four Seasons SS1K events in Texas.  From the start in Orange, TX I rode Interstate 10 all the way to Anthony, turn around and ended in either Van Horn, Alpine or Fort Stockton.


The 2015 Spring Equinox occurs Friday, March 20th at 5:45 CDT.  And in the true spirit of the IBA Four Seasons Challenge I will be riding my motorcycle heading into El Paso.  I will post a couple of remarks before I depart and again when I get settled into my hotel at the conclusion of the ride.

Fri, 3-20:  OK, here's the ride plan:  Depart the motel and head for the Exxon station to gas up and obtain the starting DBR.  Then ride east to the Sabine Turnaround to start at the most eastern Texas exit on I-10.  It's only a couple of miles but I want to duplicated the route I took on the Texas Solstice 1,000 I did in June.  The fuel stops are San Antonio, Fort Stockton, Anthony then back to Fort Stockton to end the ride. 

Left Orange at 0430 in a dense fog.  Oh, not my head but the weather was socked in with visibility about 1/4 mile.  By the time I got to Houston around 0600 it had cleared away.  It was overcast with temperatures in the mid to high 60s all the way to west of San Antonio.  I checked the radar on my zumo 665 and saw it was wet starting near Kerrville.  So, at my first pit stop just outside of San Antonio I put on my electric gear and Gore-Tex gloves.  It was wet all the way to Van Horn then cleared up nicely with blue skies and fluffy clouds all the way to Anthony. 

I did a quick pit stop and turnaround for the last segment back to Fort Stockton for the finish.  Filled up at the new Pilot station, popped over to Burger King for a veggie burger and medium fries.  Then to the Days Inn for a hot shower and a good nights sleep after 1,137 miles for the 2015 Spring Equinox.  Met two riders from Newfoundland at the hotel, who were just tickled to sign off on my IBA witness form.  Ah.....another Hard Riding Adventure in the clipboard.

Thu, 3-19:  Departed home around noon heading to Orange to spend the night.  The SaddleSore 1,000 will be done on Friday so I'm planning on leaving early from Orange to minimize traffic delays through Houston.

The ride to Orange was dramatically uneventful....and the weather was good.  I stopped at the Taco Bell for a Cantina Bowl before heading to the Days Inn to get settled in for the night.  The desk clerk witnessed my IBA form, as he had done once before.

Monday, March 9, 2015

IBA JAX Daytona Party

I am attending the annual IBA Daytona Party in Jacksonville, FL this week.  It's towards the end of Daytona Bike Week so there are lots of bikes to see. 

Full SpotWalla Maps are:   BubblerGPS Pro and SPOT Gen3

It is always loads of fun seeing fellow Long-Distance riders and meeting new ones that come to the IBA Daytona Party for the first time.  I hope to be busy at the gathering promoting The George A. Wyman Memorial Grand Tour that was just made available on line. 

Sun, 3-15:  The ides of March....just a short ride home to Wimberley and the end to another Hard Riding Adventure.

Sat, 3.1415 Pi Day!  After enjoying the full breakfast I headed west to Texas.  The weather was good and the traffic pretty normal.  I got all the way to Orange before stopping for the night.  I stopped at the Super8, the same hotel I have been using for the IBA Four Seasons SaddleSore rides I have been doing.  One left, the Spring Equinox on Friday, March 20th.  I made a reservation for Thursday night.

Fri, 3-13:  Got up early again and waited on breakfast to open.  I set up the GAWMP Grand Tour display again, this time on an nice marble table across from where everyone would be signing in for the evening's banquet.  It would get lots of exposure and judging by how the cards and bumper stickers were disappearing, lots of interest.  Around 1000 am I was drafted to help scoring the Full Court SaddleSore 1,000.  That entailed examining the riders ending dated business receipt and verifying each of their required pictures were in order. 

About 3pm the IBA Daytona Party sponsors had a couple of kegs of beer in the Comedy Zone room.  After we were all loosed up with the adult beverages Mike Kneebone made the ride presentations to all the successful finishers of the Full Court SS and BBG rides.  All except one that is.  At the official IBA Daytona Party banquet Mike would present Greg Rice his completion certificate for the Full Press Bun Burner Gold, 1,500 miles in less that 24 hours.  This was Greg's 30th BBG....establishing a new Iron Butt Association record.  Now, what was something to drink about.....not that any of us really needed an excuse.  

Thu, 3-12:  I got up early to see off the riders for the Full Court 1,000 and 1,500 miles in 24 hours ride.  The official start time was 0555 and about 75 riders head out on the prescribed route.  The wouldn't be returning until about midnight.  Everyone had to be back to the hotel by 0555 on Friday morning.

I set up the GAW Memorial Grand Tour display with the blessing of Lisa Landry, the IBA Daytona Party event master.  She was very gracious and accommodating, providing us a table use all day. 

Wed, 3-11:  It was foggy when I left the motel in Pensacola.  I wanted to arrive in Jacksonville about noon so I was on the road at 0630.  I-10 was pretty much empty eastbound.  After the sun came up the fog started to lift and was completely gone by the time I was east of Tallahassee.  I did a quick stop to gas up and have a cup of coffee.  Smooth riding all the way into Jacksonville and I arrive at the hotel a little after 1235.   Arrived alive.....!

Met up with Dr. H to discuss getting the George A. Wyman Memorial 50cc Gold and Grand Tour rides certified by the Iron Butt Association.  He was meeting with Mike Kneebone, President of the IBA on an assortment of IBA items, one of which was the finalization of our Project proposal.  I would hang out with comrades while Dr H. met with the Grand Master of the LD world.  The good news came in a sms text msg at 1804....All Approved!  I celebrated with a couple of other LD guys by going out to dinner at the local Italian eatery....then back to the hotel for some beers.

Tue, 3-10:  Departed for JAX just after sunrise.  The weather looks a little unsettled as a big rain system moved through Texas heading east on Monday.  I'll post an update on the ride when I stop for the night somewhere in Florida.  I want to arrive in Jacksonville, at the IBA Daytona Party Ramada on Hartley, late morning or around noon on Wednesday.

It was cloudy all day but I didn't reach wet conditions until Lake Charles, LA.  Just sprinkles but it made the highway wet.  The spray from other vehicles on the road was wetter than the sprinkles.  By the time I got east of Mobile, AL, the rain had stopped.  I stopped east of Pensacola FL for the night at around 8pm.