The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

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Wildhorse Cafe
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The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by Wildhorse Cafe » Wed Oct 05, 2022 5:21 pm

The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Last Year when we moved to North Carolina, from King City, California, we threw all our things into the back of a 20x8.5 cargo trailer towed by an RV, Sue and my sister drove the Mazda and towed the 2013 Black Retro, Chernaya Krasota. But sadly we didn't have room for the 2011 Patrol, the Bison Super Collider. The Super Collider was put in storage in the town of Green Field. So began a plan to recover my beloved, Bison Super Collider, a plan a year in the making.

On September 14, of this year, I flew back to California to bring the Super Collider back to her new home. I serviced her inside the storage unit, new fluids and grease, and took her to the spray w@$# in town. l had foresight to have left a lithium battery jump starter on board, so getting her going was not an issue. We had also left our camping gear behind in a small trailer which I intended to pull with the collider. Needless to say, with my personal belongings and a fully loaded trailer, we where hauling some freight.

Roger99a, was to be my traveling companion to Las Vegas, where we would meet up with Llard79, at Nelis AFB, where he RV's with his lovely wife. Llard79, is retired Air Force.

On Friday the 16th, after finishing my service and loading, I hopped on road to Coalinga, to meet up and spend the night at Roger's and get an early jump on our jouney the next day.

We started out the next morning, not so early, but greatly refreshed. We planed to camp our fist night at the Tioga Pass campground in Yosemite. We traveled to Fresno, but before we got there I ran out of gas in the San Joaquin valley, which was a little confusing to me, I was used to 200 km on a tank of gas but ran out at only 174 km. I had not thought to check my spare gas tank but luckily it was full. On to Fresno and up hwy 41 to the Southern enterance to Yosemite. Roger and I had made it our habit of stopping every 100 km to refuel and as it turns out, it was the same endurance for our backsides and kidneys. Roger had the foresight to secure road passes into Yosemite and with my Senior pass we were in. We stopped at the Yosemite valley for a brief look see, then onward to Tioga Pass. Tioga Pass is at 10,000 feet and as we rose it began to get cooler and cooler. When we arrived at Tioga Pass, it was down right freezing and the Campground was full (no reservations needed). We then moved on to the Aspen campground down on the eastern side of the Serra's, which thankfully was 20° warmer than Tioga Pass.

We pressed on to Las Vegas, the next mornig after finding a gas station. We took hwy 120 to hwy 95 into Las Vegas. Hwy 120 was an absolute hoot, having a rollercoaster roadway. Hwy 95 was not so enjoyable, We were buffeted by 25 mph head winds and with hill climbs my gas milage dropped to 12 mpg, causing me to rely on my spare gas can serval times. We weren't able to make our intended goal of Las Vegas, that day but stayed in Beatty at the Atomic Inn, where we made friends with a ferrell donkey, who was running free in the streets of Beatty, and rifling the trash cans at the Atomic Inn. On the road again to Vegas we arrived and were signed on to Nellis AFB by Larry. The next day Roger returned to Coalinga and work but not after making his world famous biscuits and gravy. I spent a lovely couple of days visiting with Larry and his misses.

Now back to business, leaving Las Vegas, I took hwy 612 to hwy 564 to hwy 167, Northshore Blvd, which travels along the northside of Lake Mead and followed that to Overton, Nevada.

At this point my GPS tried to lead my astray. I had designated it to select secondary roads only. On the outside of Overton it lead me to a dirt road, which I was happily about to tackle, but my hand shifter came apart at this exact moment. Having seen a NAPA autoparts store in Overton, I went back. The handshifter had lost a 1/4 bolt which NAPA supplied along with a washer and lock washer. I talked with Mike the owner of the NAPA, about the road I was about to take, and he told the road was throughly bad news and he had resently cut up a set of tires on his four wheeler on that road and that the road wouldn't take me where I wanted to go. Thank God, for minor breakdowns.

My intended goal was Monument Valley Arizona, I also intended to ride accross the entire country without using the Interstate Hiways. So came the realization that I could not make it from Overton to Monument Valley without traveling on Interstate 15, from N. Moapa Valley Blvd, to St George, UT, a distance of 73 miles. However this was the only time I used the Interstates for all of my travels across the US. I also forbade eating at fast food restaurants during my trip but had to break this rule in Tennessee out of desperation on a sunday. I ate in small town diners and slept in independant small town motels and never had a bad experience, by and large.

After resting in St. George, the next day, I took hwy 59 to Colorado City, then hwy 389 to Ferdonia, and to hwy 89a to Page AZ, where I stopped to see the Glen canyon dam and the Horseshoe canyon, both spectacular. My daily goal was to reach the 6 mile campsite, in the Marble Canyon, on the Colorado river. Trouble again with the GPS and my willingness to follow it blindly it took me past the six mile campsite and almost into Flagstaff, a three hour screw up. But, in my defence the road signage was no help. Arriving at 6 mile camp, I set up my camping site and settled in for a few days.

At 6 mile campgrounds, I was able to do some site seeing, the Red Cliff Monument being worthy of mentioning and procuring some Navajo gifts and trinkets. I intended to do some swiming in the Colorado but the desingnated beach was just flat dangerous, I learned too late, from my camping neighbors where the good swimming could be had. The 6 mile camp is from where they launch the Colorado river tour's using john boats and inflatables. After talking to another camping neighbor, who has taken the three week tour twice has me very motivated to go on one of these tours but at five grand a pop it's an outside chance.

On to Monument Valley, using hwy 98, to hwy 160, to Kayneta, and hwy 163 to Oljato- Monument Valley, AZ.
Moment Valley, what a jewel, superb scenery, highly recomended. Onward to Blanding for a night's rest and a Navajo Taco, which is Navajo fry bread and pinto beans, very good.

A time for inflection, the original plan had me going through Moab, but it would have me getting on interstate 70 and going through Denver. Recalculation time, I will take hwy 491 to Cortez then hwy 160 to Durango, and Pagosa Springs, over Wolf Creek pass, to Del Norte.

In Cortez, I saw the only other Ural, other than Roger's on the entire trip, it was a coral or burnt orange CT, the rider had no helmet, wore a t-shirt, shorts and deck shoes. I don't think he saw me, but if you recognize youself let me know.

Wolf Creek Pass is at 11,000 ft. across the continetal divide, I had installed .38 main jets on the carbs prior to the journey and surprisingly they worked marvelously at 10 and 11 thousand ft. I barely noticed any loss of power at altitude and in the hot and dry west. But the jets came back to bite me when I got into the cooler dense air of the east, Kentucky, Tennesse, Virgina and N. Carolina. In the east, the carbs barked at me alot and surged at low rpm end of the shifting curve, since I had no other jets with me, they would have to do. From Del Norte, Colorado, I took hwy 160 across to the east. This route avoided any large cities in Colorado, Kansas and Missouri. Hwy 160 to Walsenburg, hwy 10 to La Junta, Hwy 50 to Holly, Colorado. Time to sleep.

From Holly, hwy 400 to Dodge City, Kansas, to hwy 60 to Mountain View, Missouri. I have to say Eastern Colorado and Kansas had to be my least favorite parts of the adventure, too flat and they smelled like cow $#!+. That said, they were interesting as to the wealth of agriculture and of the few people I came in contact with were pleasant and charming.

After Eastern Colorado, and Kansas, Missouri, was a breath of fresh air, good roads with hills, sweeping turns and as green as green can be. I spent the night in the Ozarks, in Mountain View. The GPS certainly had me going over some interestly rual road. After Mountain Veiw, I hit the Mississippi flood plains, a lot of cotton and other things growing here. Hwys 60 and 62 to Cairo, IL. It was like Google says, Welcome to Illinois the within 5 minutes, it's welcome to Kentucky. Hwy 268, 62 and 68 to a KOA which I don't think was a legitimate KOA where I met a new friend named Catfish.

From The Land Between the Lakes, I traveled to Dansville, Kentucky, on hwy 62 to Bardstown, then hwy 150 to Dansville. I stopped in Dansville to visit an old friend who is also a transplant to the south but she moved two years ago with nine cats and two dogs, my wife helped drive her across the country.

Spent two nights resting, recovering in Dansville and having a wonderful visit. I also took time to service the Collider and trailer and getting ready for the final push. The weather was also a concern, after two weeks of beautiful clear blue skys. The remaints of Hurricane Ian, loomed on the horizon.

That sunday, October 2nd, I left Dansville, KY. taking hwy 150 to Mt. Veron, hwy 25E to Barbourville, hwy 25E to Middlesboro, then over the Cumberland Gap, on Hwy 58 to Jonesville, hwy 58 to Gate City, Hwy 36 to Johnson City, hwy 321 to Boone NC, and hwy 421 to Wilkesboro.

I estimated one and a half days to complete my trek from Dansville. This the point were things get interesting weather wise, Sunday started out with blue skys but on the chilly side but the temperatures had been dropping ever since I had crossed the Rockies, so I had been adjusting and layering up. Now on the east side of the Appalachian Mountain the weather turned overcast and without the sun it was down right cold on the collider with a 50° ambient temprture, but it gets worse. After Johnson City, the Smokey Mountains earned their name, in the form of clouds and rain all the way through to Boon, NC. When I hit the rain in Johnson City it was too early to quit so I pushed on to Boon and then to Wilkesboro NC. I was only an hour and a half from home at this point but I was wet, cold, tired beyond believe and it was getting dark. And I am deathly afraid of buffalo at night. So it was Wilkesboro for the night.

The next morning I took hwy 268 to Pilot Mountain, almost a direct shot to home. And I made it safe and sound. Friends and family all cautioned me to be safe. But life isn't safe and if I tuely wanted to play it safe, I would have stayed at home.

The distance traveled from Greenfield was 3164 miles; without excursions, taking a direct route would have been 2500 miles, mostly interstate miles. My damages and loses were two hats, one a favorite, three pairs of reading glasses one electric toothbrush, a quart of Mobile V twin 20/50 oil and 4 oz of gear lube. I had a new set of knobby Hiedenau's, the driver is completely gone but it did much better than the new Duo 307, I had on durning my Yellowstone trip which had be replace at 1200 miles. Four nights camping, five nights in motels. I tried not to use the online booking sites, they alway had a come on price, that disapeared after you called and then they laboured so hard to get you a good deal but after every try the price keeps going up. I did better on my own just going in cold and asking for a room. Except in the Colorado Rockies, where the beautiful people all hang out, and you're bound to take in the rear.

Link to hi-res pictures and video, down loadable:
[https://1drv.ms/a/s!AilBLNSriQhGgeV8kKoyX9LqQ8njyw]

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Last edited by Wildhorse Cafe on Thu Oct 06, 2022 9:16 am, edited 4 times in total.
2011 Patrol, The Higgs Bison Super Collider, formally known as, the Orange and Silver Pumpkin Coach.

2013 Black Retro, Chernaya Krasota, formally known as, my name is nobody.

When you set out on your journey to Ithaca
pray the road is long , full of adventure, full of knowledge
not expecting that Ithaca will offer you riches
Ithaca has given you the beautiful voyage

C.P. Cavafy

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Snakeoil
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by Snakeoil » Wed Oct 05, 2022 6:08 pm

Sounds like you had a great trip.
Regards,
Rob
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by Tomcatfixer » Wed Oct 05, 2022 6:08 pm

Awesome. I'd love to do a trek like that.
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Lokiboy
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by Lokiboy » Wed Oct 05, 2022 6:54 pm

Love the write up. I’ve been on most of those roads. You picked a good time of year.

Glad you made it home safe and sound.
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by Unkle » Wed Oct 05, 2022 7:57 pm

Feeling like the little boy on the Incedibles movie That was awsome jumping around all excited wow nice adventure
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by stagewex » Wed Oct 05, 2022 9:47 pm

Love that Monument Valley picture.
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by rougaroo » Thu Oct 06, 2022 6:39 am

Great write-up! Those are the trips to remember..

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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by tgtrotter » Thu Oct 06, 2022 9:32 am

Awesome journey. Great pace. Trailer in tow too.

I too have enjoyed some of those roads But not on a Ural. Cumberland Gap gave great 2 wheeling memories to my 14 yr. old and I. Durango, Pagosa Springs, and the surrounding passes. (Wolf Creek, San Francisco, ). And yes our last trip across Kansas felt Like eternity. Hot and smelly AF.

Love your style and like the way you think Dennis.
Thanks for sharing.
Home sweet home.
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by tetejaunecache » Thu Oct 06, 2022 11:11 am

Great trip, you enjoyed many of our favorite roads/sights. You were only 2 miles from our place here in Pagosa. sorry we missed you. gale

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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by Kilometers2 » Sun Jan 15, 2023 7:31 pm

I just read your trip report. AWESOME report. Thanks for sharing.
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atomicfumes
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Re: The Great Bison Super Collider Adventure

Post by atomicfumes » Sun Jan 15, 2023 8:01 pm

Fantastic read! Sounds like it was a great and memorable trip. Thank you for sharing it with us! :cheers:
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