Tuesday, June 26, 2012

NEPA by Motorcyle

The plan was made the evening before as we all sat on the back porch catching up.  We would be off at 8AM on Saturday and ride all day until 2:30PM and see how far we could get.  Since I've been having problems with my rear caliper seizing on my bike, I opted instead to ride my dad's other bike.  The Harley softail is about twice as heavy as I'm used to.  The handlebar position is not ideal for a lady with short arms, but it's pretty tough looking, right?

We took a right at the bottom of the hollow down the road from my dad's house and made our way towards Nicholson, PA.  The sleepy town laying beneath the bridge is already awake, fresh and ready to take on the Saturday.  We stop to get gas and give everything a second glance before really getting into the ride.

After about an hour of being in the sun and the day warming up we had to break and take off our jackets.  Stopping under a bridge, we packed the leather into the touring bike before continuing on.

We stopped in a dusty town called Clifford to check out a seemingly abandoned building that used to be a car dealership.  There were some pretty cool vintage cars, bikes and snowmobiles inside.  This Trail-Breaker bike never really caught on back in the '60s, but my dad told us about his neighbor when he was a kid that had one.  I couldn't imagine handling something like that, imagine the torque on the front wheel.

We continued on through windy mountain roads and over the crests of the mountains.  Stopping through the one streetlight in some towns, Hop Bottom and other funny sounding places that actually exist.  Big cumulous clouds decorated the blue sky, so vibrant that it almost seemed unreal. 

We found this motocross track 20 mi. outside of Carbondale.  It was built on the side of the mountain and had some pretty fast riders out doing tricks and wheelies.  My dad tried explaining the physics behind specific moves.

All of this coming from the man that built one very steep ramp for his lawnmower into his truck.  It didn't end well.  The ramp won and the lawnmower ended up face down on top of him.  A story for another day.

He did make sure to remind me again and again all of the rules of riding a bike.  "Look through the turn," he would say and adding "always search ahead for an escape plan."  You really do have to be very vigilant and on your toes.

About when we hit the Carbondale Highway up on the side of the mountain (wind gusting, tractor trailer trucks blowing me around) I envied my dad's bike accessories we teased him about.  The windshield and java holder would've been so nice.  We stopped in Olyphant to grab a bite to eat.  Then headed to the little town of Jermyn, PA.

After this we meandered our way back to Tunkhannock, PA and enjoyed the rest of the afternoon.  Even with sunburned wrists and the stinging memory of bugs hitting my face, I still smile when I think about how nice that ride was.

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