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Old 06-11-2012, 07:19 PM   #1
Ezekiel
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Ezekiel Goes East

Sunday May 27th –


Thought maybe I overpacked like usual, but whatever…I was ready to ride! Wasn’t sure exactly where I was going, but had my passport packed just in case I needed it. The morning of the ride I decided to take along my camping gear, which I had been going back and forth on bringing. Finally to bring it won out. Left around 9AM, took 101 to highway 25 out of Hollister, hooked up to highway 58 to cut east. Around Bakersfield I decided to spend my first night in Las Vegas. Booked across the Mojave which really I got pretty lucky and wasn’t too hot.


Made my way to Imperial Palace in Las Vegas where I had a reservation. Once I was to Vegas I realized I really felt like still riding, but already had the reservation so that was that. It reaffirmed my plan to try and not make reservations though and just find places to sleep as that time comes. Anyway Imperial Palace is a cheap hotel I’ve stayed at before but won’t be staying in again. The whole floor smelled like dead mice. Gross. It was Vegas, so I went and did what I do in Vegas, gambled!!! Lost $50, which really isn’t bad at all. Someones gotta pay for all those lights.
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:20 PM   #2
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Monday May 28th –
Figured out I wanted to take Interstate 40 east so that’s where I headed. Crossed into Arizona rather quickly

I’d been in the neighborhood of the Grand Canyon before but never stopped in to see it. Kept seeing the signs for it though so figured “why not?”. Took a little detour and started heading up that way. Along the road I noticed this Flintstones Campground. At the time I thought it was unique, I had never seen such a thing anyway. Now I can tell you though that they seem to be a bit of a franchise, with multiple locations throughout the US. Still kind of an interesting place though


On to the real deal, the Grand Canyon. The reason I always skipped it was because I figured it was just some big hole in the ground. I couldn’t have been more wrong, it really was VERY impressive. Pictures don’t do it any justice.

I decided to take pics from one of the ledges, yet was too scared to get REALLY close…it was a long way down!






After the detour to the Grand Canyon it was again east where I soon passed into New Mexico

Getting late so decided to camp at Blue Water Lake State Park which is just before Albuquerque New Mexico. As you can see, it’s set on a nice little lake. I believe the campground might be haunted though…I had some very crazy and vivid dreams like I’ve never had before. I ‘ll leave it at that!
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:21 PM   #3
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Tuesday May 29th –
This day took me across the Texas pan handle. Not a whole lot to see there, and the humidity was starting to set in, but they did have some interesting roadkill…Armadillos! I saw two dead on the side of the road this day in different parts, wish I had snapped a pic of them, because even dead that’s probably as close as I’ll ever get to one.
I did take my usual photo with the "Welcome To" sign

Once I got into Oklahoma the clouds started looking…interesting

Soon it started raining, hard enough that people were pulling over under overpasses, but rode through that quick only to find wind…BIG wind, 70 MPH gusts. Time for a hotel. You know it’s a good storm when locals are all watching it with awe, and it was all over the news as well.
The lightning show this storm gave was hands down the best I’ve ever seen. I LOVED IT!!! For a good 2 hours straight it did this.

youtu.be/lbGX7PJReE4

Later the wind and the rain came, mixed with a bit of hail. I had to hope I guessed the correct side to put my motorcycle on as the wind was shifting. Dumping buckets of rain, the type of rain you see in movies. Not as impressive as the lightning, but still cool to see. I was glad I pulled over when I did so I could watch and enjoy from the comfort of my room.

youtu.be/MA83oULfyfY

Last edited by Ezekiel; 06-15-2012 at 09:26 PM..
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:21 PM   #4
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Good start E... Mice of the dead sort
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:22 PM   #5
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Wednesday May 30th –
Woke up to clear skies so continued heading east…into Arkansas


It was here that I discovered the goodness that is Waffle House. Not only does this picture stand out to me because it was taken in that holy land known as waffle house, but it also shows how we are getting the short end of the stick here in California on gas prices. You see those prices in the background? That’s about what most everyone else was paying around the country while you were paying $4.50 a gallon.

Sometime after eating at Waffle House and being molested for my long hair which I guess they aren’t used to seeing in that part of the country, I came across this bridge into Tennessee

Maybe you didn’t notice, so let me point out, Tennessee has apparently stolen the Luxor. It’s no longer in Vegas and can currently be found in Memphis.
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:23 PM   #6
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:24 PM   #7
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Thursday May 31st –
Don’t even remember what town I spent last night in, but it wasn’t too far before Caigletown Tennessee which is where I had breakfast this morning at Loretta Lynn’s Kitchen. I’m used to people asking me how long have I been growing my hair but here a man didn’t ask anything, but instead told me “I think that ponytail is older than my dog.” Hahaha I think he’s right too! Loved sitting and listening to all of the deep south accents all around me. It looks like a tourist trap, but it was the real deal.



After breakfast it was on to slay the Dragon. They had 3 photographers setup in different corners on the day I went...that's better coverage than a track day! Pictures are cheaper too. Crazy this is a little 11 mile stretch of public road.





And to prove I was there I had to take a picture in front of the sign


This is what the parking lot looks like middle of the day on a Thursday. I can’t even imagine how packed it must get on weekends…I wouldn’t want to be up there on a weekend, it must be scary.

You crash and your plastics just might get added to the tree of shame


My fat head blocking the North Carolina sign…unfortunately this was the best pic I got of it!


The Dragons version of The Wall. A nice little turn out with a view

All of this goodness is located in the Great Smokey Mountains. All of the roads in that area are good, I don’t know why it’s only the Dragon that gets the attention. The area is definitely worth a visit, but be warned, the Dragon is super touristy. The Great Smokey Mountains themselves are beautiful though

I know the riding is about done for the day, but no reason for the long face

Last edited by Ezekiel; 06-15-2012 at 09:29 PM..
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:25 PM   #8
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Friday June 1st –
Woke up in my wonderful campsite in Cosby Campground in Cosby Tennessee. The night before just as the sun was setting I noticed blinking in the bushes…took me a few seconds to realize I was looking at fire flies as I had never seen them before. COOL!!! I watched the fire flies a long time and enjoyed it immensely, something I’ll remember forever. Finally, it was time for bed and just as it was, a few raindrop started falling, so I moved my tent a bit under the tree. I stayed dry all night, but slept horrible due to the sound of the rain being loud on my tent and keeping me awake. Still, very nice campground, I’m glad I stayed there.

Real quick it was apparent that I’d be getting rained on today so I pulled under this awning to put on my rain gear and try and bag up my sleeping bag

If I had my way I would have chosen for it to stay dry but I have to say, the weather sure did look nice on those Smokey Mountains

Somewhere along the way it started raining a bit too hard so I pulled into a highschool that was apparently out for the day, ducked under some cover and took a minute to read and send some emails, post a few photos to facebook, and see what the weather radar was showing. Looked like I was in the eye of a storm, with the storm moving the same direction I was! Good and bad I guess, good if I could stay in the middle and only catch edges of it, but if I fell out of the eye of it, it looked nasty. Ok, so back on the bike and time to cross a few states! The first of these, 2 friends and BARFers live in, Virginia! I should have planned to stop in and visit but thought they lived in Vermont for some reason…all those V states sound the same when you’re on the west coast! Looking back, probably best I didn’t visit because that weather I was running from hit them in a big way later in the day after I had already passed through.



Made good miles through the day rain gear needed off and on, but that night in Pennsylvania the storm caught up to me. Raining SO hard I couldn’t see anymore, had to pull off the freeway into a gas station for cover to look at my phone and see if there were any hotels in the area. While I was looking at my phone a gentleman in a FEMA truck pulled up and told me we were under tornado watch for the next 6 hours and I might want to get a hotel. He looked at me with pity…he’s driving a FEMA truck, surely he’s seen worse sights than me? Maybe he felt the pity because he thought I didn’t have enough sense to get out of the rain. Well, I did. I found my hotel a few blocks away and called it a night in Harrisburg, PA.

To be continued
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:25 PM   #9
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:26 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by budman View Post
Good start E... Mice of the dead sort
A dead mouse is good...the smell of a dead mouse, not so much!
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Old 06-11-2012, 07:52 PM   #11
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Old 06-11-2012, 08:09 PM   #12
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Old 06-11-2012, 09:48 PM   #13
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Awesome blossome. I've always liked your avatar btw, one of the first I remember seeing when I joined barf.

Curious what kind of stuff you packed other than the tent and sleeping bag.
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:26 PM   #14
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Ah, so beautiful!

I want to ride back to NJ sometime. Or fly out there, get a bike and ride back with my uncles and/or poppop. The expirience alone would be awesome, though.
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:35 PM   #15
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Never really been into travel, but for some reason I'm super jealous of this trip! Can't wait to see more!
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