A Little About Us

A Little About Us
INTRODUCTION: First, allow me to introduce the members of this group...I'm Mike riding my 2003 Heritage Softail Springer...my wife Juju is on her 2015 Freewheeler...and Ed and Nancy are on their 2009 Heritage Softail. For the purposes of this trip we are referring to ourselves as H.A.R.P. HARP is a made-up name and it simply stands for Hogs And Retired People...and all that means is that we are members of HOG (Harley Owners Group) and we are...you guessed it...retired! The name came about when seven of us made a trip out west, but just the four of us this time. I've done blogs before, and this one will be for the same reason...to refresh our memories in our "Golden Years" (they say the memory is the second thing to go...and I can't remember what the first thing was). What is different this time is the blog is being shared by THUNDER ROADS PENNSYLVANIA MAGAZINE...Truly, an honor. This journey will be a round trip from, and to our home town of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The plan is to travel to the Atlantic coast at Ocean City, Maryland for the "Official" start on U.S. Route 50. We will follow U.S. 50 west for over 3,000 miles to its terminus in Sacramento, California. From Sacramento, we will head a bit further west to the Pacific Ocean before we begin to travel south. California Highway 1 and U.S. Route 101, better known as the Pacific Coast Highway, will be the route for about 500 miles to Santa Monica. At the world famous Santa Monica Pier, we hop on Route 66...The "Mother Road". Travelling about 2,500 miles to the north east, we'll arrive at the end of 66 in Chicago, Illinois. The "Official" end of our journey. From Chicago, it's just another 450 miles and we're back in Pittsburgh. We've made very few lodging reservations, thus eliminating the pressure of trying to get somewhere by some deadline. The whole purpose of this ride to see this country and whatever piques our interest along the way...and we will be looking for that giant ball of yarn! So we invite you to ride along with us. We hope you will find it both entertaining and informative. Please feel free to leave your comments and share this with anyone you feel would have an interest.

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Friday, August 21, 2015

Day 28 Friday August 21, 2015

Days without incident - 4
Days without rain gear - 14

Our early start this morning was met with cool temperatures and overcast skies.
 The sky condition made it very comfortable riding today, but the winds were something to deal with.  The clouds also made for some stunning scenery.

Tucumcari was the next "big" small town in our path; a city that takes Route 66 seriously.  The town is filled with memorabilia from the Mother Road.  Unfortunately, because of our early start today, we passed through before anything was open.

Before crossing into Texas at Glenrio, one of the last towns in New Mexico was Endee.  I thought it was appropriate since it was the "Endee" of the State.  Here 66 joined Interstate 40 for a considerable distance.

One of the biggest problems with following Route 66 is the lack of signage.  You will see a sign on the interstate showing "Historic 66" next exit, so you take it.  At the next intersection, you have to guess which way to go.  Too many times I guessed wrong and was back on I-40.

About 50 miles into Texas, you come across the "Cadillac Ranch".  A bizarre
artist's idea to bury nine Cadillacs, nose down, in the middle of nowhere.  Since it's inception in 1974, millions of visitors have come by and spray pained names, greetings, and graffiti on the cars.

Not far down the road is the Big Texan Steak Ranch.  A famous eatery that touts the FREE 72-ounce steak...If you can eat it, along with the accompanying shrimp cocktail, salad, baked potato, roll and butter in less than one hour. Currently, the record is held by the rather diminutive Molly Schuyler, who completed the task in a mere 4 minutes and 58 seconds.  In doing so, she shattered the record set by Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eater, Joey Chestnut, who did it in 8:52.  To celebrate, she ate a second complete meal in 9 minutes and 59 seconds.  That's 15 pounds of steak in less than 15 minutes.

Moving through Texas and into Oklahoma, we once again saw a change in our surroundings.  We were entering the great plains and the surface was markedly greener and the land was obviously flatter.  This, explains the wind we had to deal with on today's ride.  There just wasn't anything to slow it down.

Ending up in Elk City, Oklahoma, we relaxed for another early start tomorrow.