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  1. #1
    Senior Member RAW's Avatar
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    Wandering in the humid stuff

    Well, after my failed ride with Meathead, I had to schedule something. So I came up with a few routes that would lead me from the Return to Shiloh rally over to the Mississippi River, down to New Orleans, and back up to the No Clever Name rally. My buddy TorqueWrench (aka Keith) thought this sounded like a pretty good idea. So we adjusted the routes and set off.

    Up and packed early


    Stopping for breakfast (where we saw a couple of other riders)


    About to cross the Tennessee River (Lake Guntersville)


    Made it to Pickwick Dam Campground



    Sunset on the river


    The next morning on the river



    Cannon demos at Shiloh


    Monuments





    And another sunset on the Tennessee River


    My bed the next morning


    Packed again and ready for the road


    Twentymile Bottom



    Cruising along the Natchez Trace Pkwy



    Pee break


    Further along the Trace




    We set up at a campground in Jackson, MS



    Where a local buddy came to join us

    He was nice enough to bring beer with him.



    The requisite Cracker Barrel stop


    A beauty shot at another small river.


    The old and new bridges




    A stop at a historic Coca Cola location



    And though I'm not a huge fan of Coke floats . . . it seemed appropriate


    Then we would enter the Vicksburg battleground . . . .

    The Cairo





    Had to get this shot

    Makes the hammocks sound pretty heroic, eh?


    It took us HOURS to get through the battleground. I can definitely say I was over it.


    Then on to another campground along the Trace


    Where it was time to do some laundry



    Ultimately, it would end up raining on my newly washed clothes before they were able to dry.

    Then we took some roads off of the Trace to find the Windsor Ruins




    Then some more back-roads to the nearly-deserted town of Rodney






    After that, we headed into Natchez, intending to explore the historic city. But a pouring rain started and drenched us for the afternoon. By the time we checked into a hotel (I wanted to watch the presidential debate that night), we were both done for the day. So that evening ended up just being a time for laundry and relaxation.

    The next morning, we had a little transportation problem


    While we were taking a break there and re-figuring our route, a sheriff drove up.
    He took one look at the sign and said, "Well, $hi7."
    Then he broke out the maps to figure a way around.

    We found the spot to cross about 30 miles away


    Keith and I hopped on a route that hug the levee on the west side of the Mississippi River. We zipped along that for quite some time. I sped up to the top of the levee to check things out, but there were signs marking it all as Private Property.

    Eventually, we got on the interstate and hauled *** over to Datadaddy's house. When we got there, I was tuckered out from holding the KTM on course around all of the speeding vehicles on the interstate.
    Last edited by RAW; 10-15-2008 at 08:35.

  2. #2
    Senior Member RAW's Avatar
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    That night, Datadaddy was an excellent host, showing us around New Orleans and taking us to a great restaurant.

    The next morning, after Datadaddy cooked breakfast, we said our goodbyes.


    Our route then took us along the coastal highway, still showing signs of damage from Katrina.



    But as we neared Biloxi, we started to see more and more classic cars. It was "Cruisin' the Coast" week. I wish I could have photographed the many, many beautiful cars we saw, but there just wasn't time. They were everywhere.

    Another side-trip up near Meridian, MS

    Apparently, this used to be a local swimmin' hole

    But the new owner (a relative who inherited the property) has let it go.



    That night, Keith and I would stay with his cousin. And we ate at Long's Fish Camp, where I stuffed myself with fried crawfish tails. MMMMMm

    The next morning, Keith and I rode a while before splitting up. Keith was headed to visit his parents. I was headed to NCN.




    Finally made it to Casa de Meathead



    and got to drinkin'.
    Sorry no pics from me for that portion.

    But the next morning, I was ready to ride.
    Although, Bender needs some help with his hammock setup.



    There were a bunch of other hammockers there (a couple of Hennesy hammocks, an ENO, a backyard hammock of some sort, and Bender's Clark)




    So . . . out to ride.



    Admittedly, I was ready to ride SLOWLY.
    And Meathead obliged by stopping every now and again to recalculate


    That ride started looping back to the lake. So I split off and went wandering on my own.




    That evening, I would see some ambien and an early bed.



    And the next morning, I knew it was all over but the hurryin' home.
    The wind kicked up pretty good on the ride back. I felt like a kite.

    I was thrilled to get home to my wife after 10 days on the road.
    But I must admit that it felt weird to not pack up the bike and keep rolling the next morning.

  3. #3
    Peter_pan's Avatar
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    Nice pics... looks like a great ride... Thanks for sharing.

    Pan
    Ounces to Grams.

    www.jacksrbetter.com ... Largest supplier of camping quilts and under quilts...Home of the Original Nest Under Quilt, and Bear Mountain Bridge Hammock. 800 595 0413

  4. #4
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    Wow, that was cool. Quite an adventure.

  5. #5
    Senior Member thecrumb's Avatar
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    I'm sooo jealous... Going to have to jot some of those locations down for future trips!

  6. #6
    Senior Member headchange4u's Avatar
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    Awesome trip report. The pictures are great. Thanks for posting Raw.

    The freedom of the open road coupled with the comfort of sleeping in a hammock. Does it get any better?
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it." -Terry Pratchett



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  7. #7
    Senior Member angrysparrow's Avatar
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    Great report..

    I've been to several of those locations myself (Shiloh, Pickwick, all along Natchez Trace, etc). Shiloh is a good place to do some stealth hangs. I'm not fond of the campground at Pickwick, though. About 30 miles east of there on the same highway is a state park called 'Big Hill Pond' that really is a beautiful park that's almost perpetually empty. It's worth checking out the next time you're in that area.
    “I think that when the lies are all told and forgot the truth will be there yet. It dont move about from place to place and it dont change from time to time. You cant corrupt it any more than you can salt salt.” - Cormac McCarthy

  8. #8
    Senior Member RAW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by headchange4u View Post

    The freedom of the open road coupled with the comfort of sleeping in a hammock. Does it get any better?
    I must admit that the hammock has definitely improved the quality of these trips. I sleep SOOOOOoooo much better.

  9. #9
    Senior Member thecrumb's Avatar
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    Amen! That's why I gave up moto-camping in the past cause it would suck to

    1) sleep terribly
    2) wake up sore and have to hop on bike

    Now my biggest problem is over-sleeping. Think every morning during my last 2 outings I overslept.

    Jim

  10. #10
    Senior Member RAW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thecrumb View Post
    Now my biggest problem is over-sleeping. Think every morning during my last 2 outings I overslept.

    Jim
    Yep, I think my biggest issue with sleep now is other people making noise in the campground.
    There's always someone who is up and making noise at the crack of dawn.
    And at these motorcycle gatherings, some ridiculously loud snorer always manages to find me and set up real close by.

    You'll notice in my pictures that at the last rally (NCN), I was in one spot on Friday night

    and in another spot the next night.

    You guessed it: a snorer. Some guy (who knows he snores) set up his tent just a few feet from my hammock.
    It was so bad, I was seriously considering pulling up his stakes and dragging his tent down into the lake.

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