Archive for the 'Tour Gasconade 2010' Category


lost on the gasconade

Temporary domicile

There was no “reason” for this get together ‘cept it was July 4th, and HiTech had a nice place to camp in, and Matty and I felt like a ride. BYOS – bring your own shit, cook outside, relax on the creek. It was actually quite fun and relaxing. Matty helped install the last nuts & bolts on the box stove that became the cooking station and HiTech got some skills going … cooking on a wood stove is a bit different than a cooking grate and open fire.

Beer will make you stupid.

Our river rides

So on Saturday afternoon we decide to float down to the camp, about 4 miles from the put in. The 3 of us in the canoe probably tip a cumulative IQ over 400, however when you factor in the Murphy stuff and compound with excess beer, our piloting skills were nil at best. By the time a boater offered a tow we had already gone past our takeout point. We weren’t smart enough to ask the kind boater where we were on the creek !! So he begins towing us further from our goal under the misconception that ‘it must be just around the next bend – ad infinitum.

Chad's KickAss Scoot

All was not lost as we did have good company as we dithered our way downstream on a river tour. These folk were kind enough to ship us overland back to camp and we did offer them suitable cash compensation. Not so much for their time and idling fuel, but as an apology for our total stupidity. Once back in camp, we refueled with more beer and great food.

So all in all it was a great weekend. Over a 100 acres on the spread and two houses down by the crick, so there was lots of visits from various sorts doing various activities, and lots of dogs, lots …..

(In case you don’t know, if you click the pictures you’ll get a better look at the photos)

Let these out on the Range

Of course, what is a nice property without a resident, New Age Wizard? Hell, that would be damned booring wouldn’t it. Trust me, we weren’t boored. This grand poo-bah lived up to all kinds of idiotic stereotypes, and was always accompanied by his hounds from hell which were forced to drag 6 ft. logging chains from their collars.

Of course, it was deemed necessary to keep a fine flock of Plymouth Rock chickens contained, penned, and cooped up 24 hours each day. No Ranging Allowed, can’t have them chickens pecking chiggers off the plants and eating proper food. No Way Dude !! Keep them locked and feed them corn just like stockyard beef. Make sure they produce yellow yolks. This is Grand Wizardry at it’s best.

Free Them God-Damned Chickens You Fool!

Despite the bitchin’, it was a great weekend and well worthy of a repeat. So kudos to HiTech for the eventful non-event. Mat and I got to do some great riding there and back in safety. I did the last 75 miles on familiar roads which may sound dull, but certainly was not. I stopped in Ava around 8:00 and picked up a 24 oz. can of brew and got onto 76 hiway and buzzed down to the first bridge over Beaver Creek for a well deserved break. This road clears of traffic about this time and is composed of high speed sweepers connecting each Ozark hill to lowland hollow, just the kind of stuff the Beemer will eat up. So the evening cools off really well and the last 35 miles are covered lickety-split at 75+ mph and not one car in site the entire way. Riding doesn’t get any better than this, an empty road filled with cool night air and you are not grinding out the end of a long ride. This is where the old girl shines, despite turning 40 next year, she runs like a young filly.

Sunday morning – The Movie

Mat and I did run a working test of our beer can stoves, but the testing was a bit unfair as his taller stove was closer to the cup giving him unfair advantage. I was then forced to make up this loss during the pistol target shoot. The 9mm Glock is a fine little shooter but ruined the hearing in my left ear. Gotta wear shooting muffs for that thang.

Matty can wrap a lyric with melody and regaled us with an original tune in the afternoon.

Todos Los Photos


Time * Speed / distance ^ unknown = road miles

Lower Gasconade River

I made the trip up to HiTech’s for the 4th, had a great time, and I returned safe and sound. That is the main point of any trip, completing it so that you can do another. The main enjoyment is the journey itself … enjoying the wind and smells, new roads and scenery, and those never-to-be-repeated chats with other bikers stopped for gas.

I lucked out on this trip as I didn’t leave from home which meant two separate routes. The ride up was 150 miles and the ride back about 200. For me that was almost 5 hours getting there, and about 6 to get back home.

At some time during the weekend someone mentioned the “how many miles do you ride in a day?” topic. Of course there are more answers to this than there are bikers, as it’s a rather rhetoric question. Even when answered specifically, each person leaves out points that relate to their situation. You can’t just apply a formula like Time * Speed / Distance since that gives you AN answer which may or may not be anyone’s THE answer.

Some answer with “I can ride xxx miles” or “I have ridden xxx miles” and a 1/2 a dozen other ways of phrasing an answer. It usually breaks into 3 large groups though …. group 1 rides all damned day, group 2 rides most of the day, and groups 3 rides a healthy portion of the day. In miles that is > 400, or 200 to 400, and say 250 miles and less per day.

I’m firmly in group 3, usually, as any day’s journey must fit inside of the real 3 dimensional world. I got to spend the 5th just chatting with HiTech and the neighbor girls, had a couple of beers while I complained about packing the bike. I rolled out at 3:30, had a lovely ride except for about 30 miles on the slab, and rolled into Ava at 8:00 pm. That 4 1/2 hours and I was still 45 miles from home.

200 miles / 5.25 hours = 38 road miles per hour.

The bike had been running better and better all day. I ride an airhead which runs better the cooler it is outside and by 8 that evening it was shade and coming twilight. At Ava I consider myself home so it’s not like grinding out the last miserable hour of the trip. The road is extra fast sweepers and hills, so you can sort of crank it if you keep an eye out for the state mounties.

I decided to get a 24 oz. Busch and I hit the road and stop at the first bridge over Beaver Creek for a nice long break and give the night air a chance to cool. The sun drops behind the hills and I walk along the creek bank. In a few minutes it has become it was a trip, now it’s just an evening ride and any trip stress is vanished.

The Busch as vanished, the bike wants to run, and I don’t like riding at night so I start her up. She runs like a stallion in the cool, moist air and keeps wanting to push 4,500 rpm’s so I give her some rein and fly past Brownbranch and then Leon’s elk ranch. No traffic at this time of night, just the thrum of on old airhead down a familiar road. I stopped at the bridge over Swan Creek and watched some fireworks as there’s always campers on the gravel bar on the 4th. The cabin is just over the hill and I pull into the shed at 9:30, get a beer and unpack.

Damned nice little ride today.


Raid on the Gasconade 2010

So I have a ‘scooter’ bud who likes to get out and site-see, do a bit of camping and fishing. We’ve been trying to meet up for a year. Have another buddy HiTech who has purchased new property on the Gasconade River. Things come together and we schedule the whole July 4th weekend for a little roundup cum Chautauqua. Camp, fish, cook, drink beer and bullshit around the campfire. Rinse & repeat as necessary, Friday thru Monday.

These two are graduating this summer, are knee-deep in dissertations and that type thing and need a break. Not a weekend party with a bunch of people where it takes you a day to recover, but the type thing that allows you to put a brake on the speed, tension and stresses of life. Some ‘glide time’ is a good way to phrase it.

Heading for Gasconade River

For me and Matty it’s about a 150 mile ride which is probably more of a morning jaunt or a short cruise. I’m planning on leaving early Friday and taking the slab to Lebanon (55 miles) for breakfast. I know the slab is no fun, but I grew up here and won’t miss a thing. Then I take off north of I-44 and cruise about 45 mph up the backest of roads with camera and tripod handy. All new roads and vistas for me, and I’ll still probably get there by noon 🙂

HiTech is supposed to have a cooler waiting on the gravel bar for ice and beer and we’re arriving with simple sleep and cook gear, and fishing equipment.

I’ll have my flyrod and a 4 1/2′ fiberglass Shakespeare spinning rig. We’ve all made some homemade beer-can alcohol stoves so there will be an official “stove off”. We’re all hillbilly engineers and delight in these type low-key games.

I’ve got all my gear ready to go, and am heading out Tuesday afternoon. I’m starting a house remodel in Springfield and have to work the next two days. Friday morning the journey begins. Be back in about a week.

Why is this?

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3 other followers