MIG Northeast Midsummer Ride version 2.0 - Ride report
Sat, 28 Aug 2004 17:17:45 -0400
I just got back in from the 2nd coming of the Midsummer Ride, this time will
Bill (Grumpy) and Jeanne (Lacey) and Rob (Jacuzzi). It was a lot hotter,
but also a lot drier than version 1.0 last week. ;-)
I have to compliment Jeanne, she's doing very well on the "thumpette"!
I arrived at the starting point at about 10:15. As I pulled into the
parking lot, I see this blue Marauder sitting there and think to myself,
"Self: Who the hell has a blue Marauder that would be coming along..."
Surprise! There's Jacuzzi who decided to surprise me with his presence.
Cool! We're off to a good start...
After establishing that Rob was the only one there so far, I decided I'd
like to try out his forward-controlled, belt-driven Marauder. I must say
that I really like the Mapam forwards, they provide just the stretch I need.
As for the belt drive, I'm actually pleasantly surprised. Rob gave me the
impression that the power off the line was nearly gone. I didn't find that
to be the case. Just a little more modulation of the clutch was all that
was needed and acceleration was just fine. The bike definitely has longer
"legs" in each gear now. I'd like to see it on a bike that's equipped with
a tach to see what the real differences are. The other thing I did notice
was how quiet it is. No chain noise. Might be a nice winter project....
As I returned from my brief test ride, I see Grumpy and Lacey pulling into
the station just as I was. They both looked a little confused! ;-) (What's
Eric doing on Rob's bike? Rob?) After a few minutes, we decided that no
one else was coming, but I'm still up at least one rider more than I
So the group was set. Jeanne on the Savage, Bill on his gorgeous, new
V-Star 1100, Rob on his Marauder and me on mine. A quick ride for fuel gave
me a chace to try out Bill's new bike. SWEET!! After out pit stop, we set
out at a leisurely pace on some more of NJ's finest back roads. One of
these days I'm going to run out of new pavement to ride around here.
That'll be a sad day for sure. We took a break near the Round Valley
Reservoir to stretch the legs and so that I could make sure Jeanne was doing
OK with the pace and such. After our little break, it was back on the road
again. More country back roads finally brought us to the historic little
town of Stockton, NJ (George P knows where this is...), right across the
Delaware River from Bumfuck Nowhere, PA! ;-) About 75 miles logged so far.
We had lunch at a little deli there in Stockton and watched the "colorful"
people that are generally found at any time around there. Double when
there's an antique show nearby like today. After the entertainment, we
fueled up and hit the road northbound. More country backroads, more farms,
etc. Rob's comment over lunch, "Where's the chemical plants?" had me
smiling for miles and miles of *my* part of NJ. Speaking of NJ backroad
riding, has anyone else seen this month's issue of Motorcycle Consumer
News... Their Great Destinations feature is none other than... The Garden
After heading northward for about 60 miles or so, the sky started to turn a
little grey, the air got a little cooler (not bad considering the heat and
humidity), and then the sprinkles started. It looked like if I continued on
my current course, we might run into a pretty sizeable thunderstorm. I
decided a change of course was needed. We didn't make it up into Sussex
County and to the 50's drive-in that was my destination. Instead we headed
down to I-80 and put a few miles between us and the storm. We jumped off in
Ledgewood and stopped for gas, then for ice cream at a little stand called
Cliff's (right near where Lenny got his new bike). All home made, lots of
different flavors (except the one I wanted...<grr>), Cliff's is an area
landmark. They were doing their usual land-office summertime business.
With an alternate selection in hand, I gave Rob, Bill, and Jeanne diretions
back onto the interstate so they could head for home. I'm sure they're
still on the road, hopefully dry...
It was probably a good thing that we detoured when we did. You see, my
house is just a little ways west of where we stopped, and as I headed home
from a thoroughly enjoyable trip, the sky grew darker and darker the further
west I got. I got into the driveway, put the bike in the garage, and after
I stepped out, I could still hear rumbling. Funny, I thought I shut the
bike off... FLASH! Lightning. Time to get inside. I was probably home
for all of fifteen minutes when the sky opened up and dumped a torrent of
rain on us. Fortunately for the others, they're heading east, away from the
storms. I expect they'll get home dry.
To Bill, Jeanne, and Rob... Thanks for coming along!! As usual when I ride
with the MIGs, it was a great day indeed.
Here's hoping to see many of you on Sunday, October 17th for the 5th Annual
(can ya believe it???) MIG Northeast Fall Foliage Run. I'm looking forward
to it already!
Eric, MIG 379 and Damn Proud Of It