Posts Tagged ‘two-lane highway’

Holly and I took advantage of a moderately decent day after a stretch of cold and rain to run over to Pittsford Plaza. We took the interstate over, not my favorite, but I must say the Fatboy is much nicer to ride on such roads than my little Honda ever was.

Our errand done, Holly turned to me and said “I want to go for a long ride.” So I headed down 65. Drove all the way to Honeoye Falls: beautiful small village.

From there we headed east toward five points, and picked up Rt 15 south  to East Avon. Was great fun just to run through the New York countryside. Passed some family farms—a rarity these days–and a great big winged something-or-other bug met eternity right in front of my eyes on the windscreen, leaving a quarter-sized yellow splotch.

We took a left on 20 and headed over 390 to find a little roadside place called the Countryside Diner. Holly ordered the fried chicken, and I had the hamburger-and-macaroni soup with fried clams and a salad. Good food and generous with the soft drinks, all for the price of a deep-fried carb & starch meal at a burger franchise. A good meal for a decent price.

We headed home the long way, Rt 5 west to LeRoy, then north. It was a good day, and all the more fun for having Holly along. We can’t talk much on the ride, but seem to like the same kinds of places, and when we stop it always seems to lead to good father-daughter conversations. I’ll miss that when she moves on in a few years.

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I have driven everything from dirt and gravel to six lane interstates,  Southeastern Utahbut my favorite ride will always be the two lane country highway, with a yellow stripe down the middle and a white stripe down the side.

They say the safest road is the interstate, because the travel is all going in the same direction and there are limited entrances for traffic. Yeah, safe like NASCAR—they all drive the same direction too. When every other steel-cager drives like he had a restrictor plate, and a turn signal is viewed as a sign of weakness, safe is not  a word that comes to mind.

Gravel roads are just no fun. Slow to a crawl, worry about stones dinging the chrome, and try not to let the front end hit a hole or a pile of loose soil. In fact I just found out I have a small stone embedded in my belt and it’s going to have to be replaced.

The single lane country road can be nice, but very slow going. Okay for a leisurely afternoon cruise, but one always has to watch for potholes, frost heaves, broken shoulders (when there is one), blind turns and blocked driveways.

Arches National ParkThe two lane highway is my favorite. I love watching the lines seem to weave back and forth as I shoot the curves. Making good time on most  stretches, from 55 to 65 mph, makes up for the slower parts. I think what I love most is working through the gears. For the same reason I always preferred road racing to NASCAR. Oval tracks are all about suspension geometry and tuning. Road courses are more about timing of the shift, out-braking the other driver, trying to get the inside line without losing too much speed. Read the turn, light touch on the brake, shift down at just the right moment  and lean into it, roll the throttle as I pass the apex and kick it up a gear as the V-Twin rumbles; there’s no more exciting feeling on a bike.