Day 6 – Super Slab
By getting onto the super-slab today I was going to be able to chew up some serious mileage, after the hot tub and a full nights rest the 550 miles from Walnut Iowa to Cheyenne Wyoming was not too bad at all.
With the fantastic 75MPH speed limits it did not take too long at all to get to the SAC museum. They had a lot of great stuff, but it was so crammed into the hangers it was hard to get good photos. Most of what they had was fairly standard fair B1A, B52, SR71, U2 etc. but they also had a B-36J which was one of the oddest planes I had ever seen with its six props and four jet engines. Really odd.
As I got deeper into Nebraska the terrain lost most of its feature and it was just flat in all directions, most people had warned me that Nebraska was a boring state, but I didn’t find it too bad at all. At speed it went by pretty quickly. It was also sort of cool seeing the combine harvesters (I am not sure what the US name is) out working the fields, the entire machines were just covered in layers of dust they were kicking up while doing their jobs. Funny that my allergies have not been a problem on this trip, must be something in Virginia.
To help blend with Nebraska I had selected to listen to Zen and the Art of Motorcycle maintenance as an audiobook. Last time I read that book I came away with an opinion that is quite different to me this time, of course I am not at the end yet, but it seems different. I suspect it is not the text that has changed in the past ten years.
The blending of iPod with trip had come up a few times naturally on this trip, when riding in Canada when “Blame Canada” came on from the SouthPark Movie I felt like a fugitive, on the big line “When Canada is dead and gone, there will be no more Celine Dion” I cheered even louder then usual. The played the song again and responded equally well.
Earlier in Nebraska I was listening to the Moth Podcast and the speech was talking about a fifth generation Nebraskan trying desperately to get out.
On my last gas stop I performed my routing inspection of the bike, after some 27K miles and plenty of fruitless inspections I noticed something this time. One of the bolts holding the rear brake caliper in place had worked itself loose with the vibrations. Thankfully it is a really long bolt so it had not quite fallen out. Loosing this bolt would not have caused things to stop working, but who knows where a bolt dropping into a wheel at 90MPH would have ended up.
I tightened the bolt, and then performed a second more thorough inspection but found nothing else. I had rolled the tires at the gas stop before and made sure they were good all the way round, as the miles continue to rack up on the Bapper it will be key that I keep looking at these things, and now I have a reminder of why it is important.
Finally arrival in Cheyenne gave me the chance to see the Dougherty’s, the whole clan seem to be doing very well, the night ended with Karin doing a cross word, Dan and I playing on the Internets (you don’t think this blog writes itself), and since I am deprived of an iPhone, damn Apple, I have to geotag by hand while I still remember where I have been.
Tomorrow we are going to do some tourist stuff around here, so should have more photos from that, then the actually trip is just 245 miles up to Gillette for the rally. I knew there was a reason I was riding for the past five days.
I am not sure how connectivity will be there, so if I go offline for a while, please don’t be concerned. Sunday I leave and come back to Cheyenne or Denver depending on the timing, so I would suspect programming to restart then or Monday.