Sunday, August 24, 2014

“Uh oh, guess what day it is. Guess what day it is. Huh? Anybody? Julie, hey, guess what day it is. Aw c’mon I know you can hear me. Mike Mike Mike Mike Mike, what day is it Mike? Wuuhahaha. Leslie, guess what today is.”

They say it's your birthday, well it's my birthday too, yeah.
They say it's your birthday, we're gonna have a good time!

Yes my little langoliers, it's my birthday. Now Joan says I'm 61. I just say I'm more mature and experiencd than I used to be! I kept wondering why Joan was constantly running over to the campground office every day for the last few days, when finally while Dave & Lydia were here she gave up the ghost and stated she had made an executive decision.....she was giving me my birthday present early. So I opened the newly delivered parcels and what to my wondering eyes should was a GoPro camera! Alright. What an unexpected surprise.

Our friends Dave & Lydia arrived the Thursday after Sturgis ready to ride with Dave's 1996 Harley. It only has 95,000 miles so Dave figured it needed to be ridden just a little. Dave & Lydia started riding Friday morning and I joined them just after lunch. Friday we went looking for bison and it didn't take long. We drove up on a small herd of about 200 just outside of Wind Cave as they were crossing Hwy 87. Let's just say Lydia was very excited when several of the bison decided to walk along the edge of the road just 10' from where we had stopped.

We drove on through Custer State Park and turned onto Iron Mountain Road. Iron Mountain Road is made for motorcycles with 314 curves, 14 switchbacks, 3 tunnels and 3 pigtails all within a 17 mile stretch of road. About 3 miles in we came to a stop behind a couple of dozen cars and close to 1000 bison. It was a 2-fer day! There were bison on the left and bison on the right....bison in front of us and bison crossing the road from both sides. We spent about 15 minutes waiting for traffic to move, but that never happened. We did see a sightseeing jeep simply pull out and kind of slowly maneuver his way through the meandering herd. After a few more minutes of standing still, I decided to follow the jeep's lead, so I pulled out of my traffic lane and started slowly working my way forward through the herd...making sure I didn't crowd any mama's with small calfs or seem too aggressive approaching any of the bulls that showed an interest in the motorcycles. We 'plowed' our way through the herd passing all of the cars that were blocked and soon had the entire road to ourselves. A few miles further down the road we stopped at a scenic overlook, only to be approached by a woman who started thanking us for saving her. She stated she had been 'trapped' by the bison herd for quite some time and was afraid to move her car with so many bison roaming back and forth. Once we passed her, she simply pulled in behind us and followed us to safety. Ah shucks ma'am, it weren't nothin'.

Full Throttle Saloon
Over the remainder of the weekend, we visited Mt. Rushmore, Sturgis, Needles, Vanocker Canyon, Devils Tower and Spearfish Canyon.

Mt Rushmore
Devils Tower, Wyoming

Crazy Horse

Driving Around the Black Hills
You Just Never Know What
You Might See
You Also Learn a Lot About Your Friends

We had a great time. When we stopped in Sturgis we noticed quite a difference between the 'during' and 'after' event city.

During Sturgis
After Sturgis

Dave was telling me that he was starting to experience small problems with his bike....he had to wire up one of the exhaust pipes as he had discovered a small hole that had rusted out and he was afraid it might get worse while we were riding. Well the pipe never fell off, but the hole nearly tripled in size. His shocks were 'bottoming' out whenever he road 2-up and his front forks were looking much worse the wear from 18 years of riding in all types of weather. The paint on the bike was starting to wear and his speedometer cable broke the first day out. All things considered he was thinking about shopping for a newer bike. He took me up on an offer to ride my streetglide one morning and he couldn't stop smiling when we eventually stopped for breakfast. It's my opinion that a new bike is in Dave's near future. I'm glad I didn't tease him too much about his maintenance concerns because as we were riding one day I noticed my shifter pegs gently rocking back and forth.....for those of you that don't know, that is not a good thing as the shifter pegs should be firmly attached in order to shift gears. We pulled to the side to check things out and it turned out not to be too bad after all. Just a loose nut and we were back on the road in about 10 minutes.

When the weekend was over we had ridden a total of over 700 miles. What a great time. For any of you FOSJ riders. Keep us in mind next time your planning your vacations!

And as most all full time RVers know, there are almost always some sort of maintenance issues that need to be taken care of around the RV. On Thursday we had the lower doors of the refrigerator replaced under our warranty contract. They had begun to sag and the doors were rubbing against each other when opening/closing. Also we had been noticing that the foot pedal on the toilet was sticking, so I decided to check it out Saturday morning. I tried checking a couple of items, but to no avail. I ended up having to remove not only the toilet bowl, but the pedestal as well. And as I was disassembling the various parts of the pedestal I figured out what was wrong.....a broken spring attached to the foot pedal. Let's's 11am on Saturday....what are the odds I can find an RV shop with the part I need that will be open today...oh well, to the phones! First call, Dakota RV in Rapid City...."Well we don't sell the springs but we do have a kit that includes the spring. And we're open till 4pm today"....yipee! Off we go about 45 miles to Rapid, pick up the part, lunch at Outback, then on to Walmart for groceries before returning home. Reassembling the pedestal turned out to be a little trickier that taking it apart, but finally managed to get everything back together just before dark. A happy ending to a crappy job.

2 of my favorite ladies

This pic is for Tom Davis. Wish you could have been here.

Doug & Tristyn

Shout out to my oldest son Doug......birthday upcoming September 1. Happy Birthday son. Looking forward to seeing you and your family soon!

Well, that's it for now. Stay Tuned. More to Come!


  1. What a great weekend. You took some amazing rides.

  2. Happy happy Birthday Steve!
    Wow...700 miles is a lot ...any chance you and Joan will be receiving the "iron butt" award? It's great to spend time with friends!

  3. Happy Birthday, Steve:) We seem to be the same age young:)

    Great motorcycle riding! Sturgis is much better "after." You are in a wonderful area for the bikes.

    Let us know what you think of your GoPro!!

  4. What a fantastic way to spend your 39th birthday!

  5. Happy belated birthday! Based on the photos, Lydia is one smart lady....if you know what I mean!

  6. Hope you had a great birthday. We will actually be in Yuma from mid-October through February. We'll leave to go to Wisconsin and be gone from mid-December until a few days after Christmas. Depending on when you are coming through, we will probably be there. It sure would be fun to get together and meet you both!!