2017 Regional Rallies
2017 Canada West Ride
When: August 10-12, 2017
Where: Chewelah, Washington
Rally Headquarters: The Nordlig Inn
Rally Leader: Al "canuckrider" Leonhardt
The CanadaWest guys had a ride but they are very secretive about the details. Maybe someone will speak up at some point.
2017 South Central Regional Rally
When: May 19-20, 2017
Rally Headquarters: The Lodge
Rally Leader: David "Framer" Marang
Written by David "Framer" Marang
This is going to be the shortest recap in history..... It rained everyday... the end.
Well that was the forecast. Actually it rained every night and was cool and a little misty at times which made for some
of the best riding conditions you could of ask for. In all 24 people from 7 states attended the rally.
The Lodge proved to be an ideal spot, owners Paul and Kim Dutile were great hosts.
Thursday: I left for Eureka Springs in the afternoon with both bikes in tow. The forecast had been for rain all day Thursday so I thought this would be a perfect time to trailer 2 bikes before the trip to Lake George, NY.
We got to ES about 7:00 and there were already quite a few people there.
A few early birds like Troy and Carla, Jim and Liz, Jesse and Gina got a ride in on Thursday while some of us had to work. Well kinda work.
I proceeded to unload the bikes and socialize with the other VBA members.
Most of us were tired and went to bed early to get a fresh start in the morning. When morning came around my wife told me my phone had been going off all through the night.
When I checked my phone there had been severe thunderstorms warnings and a tornado warning In the area (I guess I slept through it).
Friday: After breakfast and the morning rain Dave and Jesse got a ride plan together (when you have that many people from Arkansas at the rally you don't want an Okie plotting your course). Thanks to Jesse for leading the ride.
So about 9:30 we hopped on the bikes and headed south.
After a short gas stop it was on down highway 23.
Somewhere after we turned on 74 we stopped for a photo op.
Then it was on to one of the most Beautiful places I've seen
in Arkansas, the Boxley Valley. Since we were on the move and there isn't any shoulder to speak of we weren't able to take any pictures but here's a pic I got online.
So it was on to the upper part of highway 123.
This is usually one of my favorite roads but as fortune might have it we somehow happened behind a truck pulling a forklift. We were sure he was going to turn off, after all the switchbacks at the end of 123 are so
tight it's hard for cruisers to maneuver through them. Well he didn't and we got to smell burning breaks all the way down the mountain. Just what you want right before lunch. On to the Cliff House for lunch.
After lunch we headed to Jasper to gas up and then ride 74 towards Ponca. When we got back to Berryville the sky was turning black towards Eureka Springs.
I ask Jesse if he wanted to pull off and check the radar.
He said "it's only 10 miles let's go for it" and we did.
It started sprinkling 2 miles out of town and we pulled into the hotel just as the skies opened up.
The rain that was forecasted was back but short lived.
Saturday: We got up to rain again. Amin text me, he wanted us to wait on him and Jim for breakfast. When they arrived some of us went to my favorite breakfast place, The Mud Street Café.
The rain ended around 9:00 so we rounded everybody up for a group photo.
Today our ride would take us south to the Pig Trail. It started off normal, we gassed up just out of town and headed down 23. The problem happened at a quirky intersection in Huntsville. I'm not going to go into details or fault but we had two bikes collide with each other. Luckily neither rider was hurt and only one bike was really damaged.
So some went back while the rest of us continued on.
The Pig Trail was a little sketchy at best, the road was wet from rain and had pushed rocks and gravel onto the roadway. Someone forgot to tell us to pack a chainsaw as there were trees down too.
Then there were your usual idiots on sport bikes but we made it through.
So we headed to Oark for lunch.
This road wasn't much better than the Pig Trail.
So when we got to the Oark Cafe I ask Jesse if the road back
was going to be better. He looked at me, smiled and said
"there's only one way in and one way out unless you like dirt".
So we had lunch.
After lunch we made one stop to look at one of the flooded rivers.
The sign by the bikes explained why the river was so green... hum. Then onto Turner Bend Store on the Mulberry River.
On the way back it started to rain lightly and was a bit cooler.
So when we stopped in Huntsville for gas I put my liner in and changed gloves. The radar showed the rain was about to stop but it was wrong. It didn't rain hard but it did rain for the next 30 miles.
That evening we headed to the Rockin Pig for dinner.
After that it was more socializing (nice word for beer drinking) and on to bed.
The next morning we got up and said our goodbyes and headed our separate ways.
For more pictures of the rally click here.