Texas Hill Country Adventure

DAY 1 - MARCH 12, 2008

It was like the old movie..."Four For Texas", or maybe the recent movie "Wild Hogs" would be a more appropriate comparison. Myself and two other motorcycle riding buddies decided to ride our bike to Texas, where we would meet up with another friend to ride the Texas Hill Country. The hill country was our destination, but the journey there and back was equally memorable.

Charlie Pope, a retired Coast Guard Chief from Crystal City, and Keith Falkner, a retired Computer Programmer from Sarasota, Florida, and myself, from Clermont Florida met in Crystal City, Florida early in the morning of Wednesday, March 12th. Our first destination was the Huddle House in Chiefland for a hardy breakfast. After waffles, eggs, sausage, and enough coffee to drown an elephant, we set our sights on Georgia. It was going to be a long day, so we didn't plan on too many stops along the way, but Charlie thought we'd enjoy seeing Providence Canyon State Park just West of Lumpkin, Georgia, and he was right.  It's like a mini Grand Canyon with the pink, orange, red and purple hues of the soft canyon soil, which make a beautiful natural painting.  You can hike into the canyon, but we opted not to since it would take a couple of hours to go in and back out, plus we weren't sure that we'd make it back up the fairly steep trail.  We hadn't planned on spending the night at the bottom of this canyon. 

From there we set our sights on Alabama, which was only about 10 miles away.  Once across the border we headed northwest between Montgomery and Tuskegee, and then on to Wind Creek State Park,  Wind Creek is about 120 miles from Providence, and it took us about 3 hours.  The roads that Charley picked out had plenty of nice scenery.  We pulled into Wind Creek a little before dusk, and what a beautiful park it is.  Our camp sites couldn't be any better.  We were on a little peninsula, with the lake on either side of us.  We drank in the beauty for a short while, and then got busy setting up our tents.  By the time we had the camp set up, it was just about dark. and we were getting hungry.  We  decided to run into town for some pizza, which hit the sport.  I was leading on the way back, and blew right by the turnoff to our camp.  Thankfully, I realized it right away and we finally got back on track.  I was so busy looking for deer that I wasn't watching anything else. If you'd ever hit a deer, you know how all consuming it can be to ride in the dark, but that's a whole other story.

We arrived at camp about 9pm and decided to build a fire.  We had stopped in town and got a few quick burn logs.  In no time we had a fire going and Charley whips out his private stash of Captain Morgan Spiced Rum.  A few fingers of rum and a splash of coke and we were all set to chat about the days ride.  We didn't polish off the rum that night, but there was only a couple of shots left for another time.  The days ride finally caught up with us and we decided to call it a night. 

Photos - Day 1

DAY 2 - MARCH 13, 2008

We were all up at daybreak, and there was a chill in the air.  Thank God he bathroom/showers were heated.  We decided to build another fire, but we had used all of the logs the night before,  so we went on a wood collecting mission.  We scrounged up enough wood and whatever was combustible and built a little fire...sure felt good.  We got our dew covered tents down and loaded on our bikes while the sun was starting to warm thinks up a bit.

We had discussed earlier about taking a detour from our planned route and visit the Barber Motorsports Museum near Birmingham.  It was only 60 miles north of our route, so we decided that we would go.  The ride up to the museum was great, especially a neat little road in the hills called Bailey Road.  If you ever visit the museum, this is a MUST road to ride.  Extremely curvy, and narrow.  There's only room for one vehicle, and two way traffic could be a real problem.  Luckily we only ran into one truck that was coming down the hill.  We had to pull off to the side of the road to let him by.  Once we got off Bailey road, we got on another road that was only marginally bigger and also very curvy.  For a while we thought were were lost, but finally saw a museum sign.  When we turned up to the museum, the road reminded us of a road race course as it wound around the hills.  Our first sight of the museum was awe-inspiring.  Out in the middle of nowhere was this very impressive 5 story glass structure.  Even though I had checked out the museum on the internet, I had no idea of how impressive it really is.

We parked our bikes right up in front, which was reserved for motorcycles only.  We snapped a few pictures outside before we headed into the museum.  When we walked through the door.....WOW....how amazing.  It was like a bunch of kids in a candy store.  There was so much neat stuff that we didn't know where to start.   I've separated most of the museum pictures into it's own album because there are so many pictures....370 to be exact.  We could have spent all day there, and probably most of the following day.  Not only was the museum itself impressive, we got to watch a bunch of Porches going around the race track just outside the back windows of the museum.  Did I say WOW  before? 

After about 3+ hours we finally pulled ourselves away from all the CANDY.  We still had a long way to go, and in fact there was no way that we could make it to our planned camp site via our initial route.  Reluctantly, we decided to jump onto I-20 try to make up some time. but wouldn't you know, we hit some late afternoon traffic in Birmingham.  We stayed on I-20 the rest of the afternoon, and finally decided to stop somewhere in Mississippi to search for a campground or motel.  There was a KOA campground showing on our GPS, so we headed straight for that location.  When we got there all we could find were homes.  We drove around the area in hopes of finding it until a spotted a couple of young girls walking down the road.  I stopped and asked them if they knew where the KOA campground was located, and they said it had shut down two years earlier.  Discouraged and tired, we set out in search of a motel, and eventually found one.

Photos - Day 2   (Click here to view the complete photo album of Barber Motorsports Museum)

DAY 3 - MARCH 14, 2008

Today we've set our sites on the big "T"....TEXAS!

Photos - Day 3

DAY 4 - MARCH 15, 2008

Photos - Day 4

DAY 5 - MARCH 16, 2008

Photos - Day 5

DAY 6 - MARCH 17, 2008

Photos - Day 6

DAY 7 - MARCH 18, 2008

Photos - Day 7

DAY 8 - MARCH 19, 2008

Photos - Day 8

DAY 9 - MARCH 20, 2008

Photos - Day 9

DAY 10 - MARCH 21, 2008

Photos - Day 10