#118 Georgia On My Mind

March 28, 2008
527 miles

Georgia On My Mind
Day 1

Friday morning about 9:30am, I pull out of the driveway headed south with Georgia on my mind.
Someone called a RTE at Sconyers BBQ in Augusta, Georgia and this is where I feel I need to be.

This will be the first road trip with my new Bill Mayer Saddle (BMS). The RT's stock low seat was a torture device. I could only go 50-70 miles before I was fidgeting around in the seat, standing up on the pegs while trying to relieve the hot spots. By 80 miles in the seat I was looking for a place to pull over and get out of the seat long enough to get some circulation going again. Now what is the point of having a 250 mile range fuel tank if the seat limits me to less than 100 miles?! I ordered the BMS with a promise of a one week build. Good to Rocky's (Bill's son) word, I had the new seat on my doorstep in 9 days via 2-day shipping.

You may be able to see in this photo that the BMS even looks comfortable. I can now ride tank fill-up to tank fill-up with no need to pull over for butt relief. This RT thing is beginning to come together nicely!

Compare to the stock seat in these next two photos.

I am still concerned about the seat height. I think the BMS raised me about 1/2" when I really didn't have it to spare. I do fine when on level pavement, but if I stop where there's a slight dip in the pavement...I could have a problem. If you have ever been on a roof and used a step ladder to get down you may know how I feel. It's the unsure moment when you start hanging yourself off as you blindly feel for the ladder with your feet. If you misjudge, you will miss the ladder. Or as you are reaching for the ladder with your outreached toes, you may aim wrong and tip the ladder over. That's not good! The feeling of hanging off a roof searching for a ladder barely in reach of your extended toe is how I feel when stopping and reaching my foot to the ground. As it is, I can only get a tiptoe to the ground on both sides at the same time OR I have to choose the better side (smoother, leveler, higher) and slide my butt to that side so as to get the ball of my foot to the ground or, just maybe, a flat foot to the ground. If I have a flat foot on one side, the other foot is dangling on the other side somewhere above the foot peg (about 1 foot off the ground). That's a significant Butt Slide!

Now that we've discussed butt comfort issues and stretching feet to the ground, let's move on down the road. My goal for today is to ride from Fredericksburg, VA to Augusta, GA. Today's ride isn't about side trips and sightseeing. I95 will take me 360 miles south to I20 at Florence, SC where I'll continue the last 150 miles to Augusta, GA.

This was my typical view riding down interstate highways for most of the day.
Notice the additional mirrors attached to the windshield. These are great "scanner" mirrors from Saeng. www.saeng.com/scanners.htm
They allow me to see into the blind spots. I can see me, the area to my left & right, and all the way down the road that I just left behind. And I can see all this without having to turn my head or look down! I received these from an MTF member that no longer had use for them. I think they are great. On my way back home the right mirror came off and failed to stay stuck. I took it off and will deal with re-attaching it later at home. Even with only one in use, I could see much better than without. After trying them, I would buy new ones if I didn't already have these.

You may also notice that I've added stalk mirrors. These new stalk (GS) mirrors allow me to see better and take my fleetering photos that y'all Fleeter Followers have become used to!

After turning onto I20 in Florence, I have Camden, SC coming up less than 50 miles away. I start thinkin'....

Even though this trip really isn't about collecting stamps, some habits are hard to resist. I make a quick exit and find a stamp at the Camden Revolutionary War Site.

This group that I often refer to -- The Motorcycle Touring Forum (MTF) -- is an Internet group that discusses topics regularly via an online forum. But what makes this group special is that we also get together on a regular basis face to face. We often even ride hundreds of miles to eat together. (Ride To Eat = RTE)

One of the members decided that since we were coming to his neck of the woods for an RTE, that he and his wife would organize a bonus supper. He invited everyone to his house for a hotdog roast. This is a photo of the 20+ motorcycles lined up in their driveway outside of Trenton, SC. I hadn't decided for sure whether I would attend, but as I closed in on the exit to their house I saw the timing was right so at the last minute I switched on the blinker and headed down the road for a hotdog! Thanks to Andy and Susan for the hospitality!

We even had birthday cake for Alex as we celebrated her 9th birthday.
After about 3 hours of hotdog eating, birthday celebrating, and visiting, I made it to my motel room on the south side of Augusta, GA.

As I was checking in, the clerk mentioned that someone else on a motorcycle had just checked in. I inquired of the name, mentioning that I may know him. She declined to provide the name -- citing security reasons. But knowing that I just rode in from Virginia, she said that she doubted that I knew him...that he was an older fellow from Florida riding a big motorcycle. Little did she know that this was a good description of many MTF members. Sure enough as I pulled around the corner, I saw a gray haired gentleman wearing an Iron Butt Association t-shirt unloading his Goldwing. I stopped and we introduced ourselves. Yep, we were both in town for tomorrow's RTE.

I settled in for the night and dreamt of BBQ and Butt Slides.

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