Victor joined us and we rode thru "The Valley of Fire" together. In St.George we had our first real meal and the best ribs ever in my life!!
Zion NP was more beautyful as I imagined and it was an outstanding ride. I love those orange colored rocks and tiny curves! We reached Bryce Canyon in the early evening. Because it was getting dark and cold (at 7700 ft) we decided to visit the canyon in the next morning. Which was a good one because the light was much better.
It was a very special day for me because I wanted to ride the Burr Trail from Boulder to Halls Crossing. The only things I knew was: maybe water crossing, 3-4 miles on sand, only the first part is paved. It was the kind of adventure I was looking for and it was absolute FANTASTIC!!
Camping was part of the plan but as we arrived in Halls Crossing (there was nothing else than a marina and a gas station on a campgroud) we couldn't resist to sleep in a trailer. Never seen something like this! Three bedrooms, a big kitchen and a living room .. wow!
On the next day we rode thru the Monument Valley and had lunch at the Trading Post. Of course we made a picture of the long road, maybe the most known in the world. What a great scenery!! But here I wont show you it to you because I'm sure you've seen it several times. Hope you like this one:
After some advices we didn't rode the classic tourist route to Flagstaff. Instead we rode to Farmington, which was really boring (80 miles and just one gas station) and from there to Taos (a very nice town) and Santa Fe. The first part to Taos was a little bit windy, but from Taos to Santy Fe we had some curves .. fine to ride.
Here in Santa Fe we met up a german guy who lives there for about 14 years ago and has now own a motorcycle workshop.
After our arrival in Alamogordo we spent the rest of the daylight in White Sands NP. It's a small area of white sand (dunes and couple of plants) and the first rockets was tested there for spaceflights (if my memories don't lie). Next to White Sands there's the Holloman Air Force Base where a german soldier was there for a week or so. Normally he's stationed for 3 years in Washington D.C. We met him at the Motel, talked for about 2 hours and he invited us to stay in his house in Washington. He also told us about the "Rolling Thunder", I didn't know until then, and were now trying to get there.
The next two days we rode thru Texas with a short stop in Roswell, where we visited the UFO museum (and bought a sticker of course ). Quite a funny place but not really that interesting as I thought it would be. Ah .. yes, I just forgot that I met a retired police officer from Florida there. He's a member of the IPA, as me. So we had a talk.. of course.
However, we took the hwy (70?) directly to Roswell thru the "hills". Holy .. this was the coldest ride we had in the US by now. The temperature was at 7 degrees (c) and we put all on we had (incl. rain gear.). Didn't know that it could be that cold - and yes, I didn't mentioned the details because I didn't wanted to plan too much. It's more fun that way.
Somewhere on the road after Roswell I saw a guy next to his bike on the hwy. So I stopped and asked if he needs help but he just wanted to make a picture of this huge open land. Glad that I'm not the only one who's amazed about that "boring" wide land. I met him several times again and in the evening we was neighbours in the same motel. He's from New Orleans and gave us some great tipps about what to do there. Sadly that we didn't changed our contacts.
The ride from Brownsville to Fort Worth wasn't really exciting, just a lot of farms, straight roads and open land. Only the arrival in Fort Worth was great. Before we me up with James, we rode to the BMW dealer in hurst. The bike was ready for the 7000 mi service and in fact that we would stay for two nights I wanted to know if they could put me in for the next day. There I met Justin, a guy from the service team and the most craziest man I've ever met. Ithink it was something they called "bike night" going on in the evening. So we stayed a little bit longer than we expected. We had a lot of fun and talks about the trip.
James was great!! This was the first time we saw an american house from inside and it was like to meet an old friend. He gave us a room to sleep, a lot of information what we could do (while he's at work) and took us to the Stockyards for dinner. If I would write songs, one would be about him. In fact that his parents live right next on our route to Florida, we'll stop there to bring them a letter from their son. :-)
After a lot of advices to ride thru the Ozarks, I put them on the list. But before we leave Texas I tried to get a real Texas cowboy hat. Ok, thats not so difficult, but to find one which I could transport on the bike it was. We stopped in Justin, as James said, to visit the stores there. But.. none who would survive our trip, and they don't ship to Europe. So we left after breakfast and rode into rain, the half day long and until we quitted in Mena.
In the next morning, I was online to tell the people at home whats going on, a guy from BMWMOA invited us for a stay in his guest house right next to the Ozarks. So we changed our plans and rode the Pig Trail on hwy 23. Ken was amazing! Because he and his wife was invited for dinner, but didn't wanted us to wait, he left his and the guest house UNLOCKED for us. Ok, the people in austria outside of the cities are not really scarred and of course they know and trust eachother in the neighbourhood, but I'm quite sure they won't leave their houses unlocked for foreigner they never met. I felt very, very honered about that and I'll never forget this. Ken, this was AWESOME!!
We talked a lot, in the evening and at breakfast. On our way to Memphis, Ken and his father (90 years old!!!) Joined us the half way to West Plains, where we split up after lunch. It was a beautyfull ride and we had a great time with Ken, his wife and his father. Thank you very much again!
Just for dinner and a short view about whats going on in Memphis.
On the map the roads look not that straight as they are in real. Down the Mississippi we rode thru small towns and saw a lot of farming. But the river, we saw him just once. Only the Natchez Parkway was good to ride but way too short.
Today was a short day. The plan was to ride on smaller roads and see some plantages. But the bridge I'd planned was gone - thats about the details. *grrr So we just saw some old houses, which was great, but had to use the Interstate to ride around in the same time. As you can imagine, staying in the French Quarter isn't cheap and because of that we wanted to arrive as soon as possible to have time for walking around - what we already did.
Tomorrow we'll continue our trip on the coastline to Florida, where we'll visit another guy from advrider.cm in Tampa. On the way to Daytona Beach, maybe we'll stay there for a day to relax on the beach, we'll - hopefully - visit another most wanted point of interest.