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Is this heaven? No it is Arkansas! Ozark Escape

The riding season has finally arrived. The weather for the weekend was forecast to be the best three days in a long time. Let’s Ride.  I could hardly contain myself on Thursday as the clock seemed stuck for several hours. I left the store around 2P, headed to the house, got my gear on and hit the road. Even taking my time and not slabbing it, I was sitting at the hotel in Harrison around 4:30PM. While checking in,  I met Barbara and Steve from Tulsa Oklahoma. They had seen the ride on the MSTA facebook page and decided to join us. I was glad they tagged along. 

I asked the kind lady behind the counter if she had seen Yeeha yet. She looked into her handy dandy computer and gave me the news that he did not have a room reserved. Well I knew he had signed up so that was rather odd. After I checked in, I gave him a call. The news was not very good. He had brought his RS up via his trailer and had already been to the hotel. The bad news was, some how the RS wanted to play dead (fell over) and broke one of the cases. Yeeha had already reloaded the RS on the trailer and was headed back to Ft Worth. He did say that he would go home get his RT and he would see us Friday before dinner. Now that is a dedicated dude right there.  Another Rider named Bob joined us as well. He was from the Kansas City area. And that’s all I got to say about that. (said in my best forrest gump voice). We headed over to the Neighbor’s Mill for dinner. If you are ever in the area, this is a must. Great food and a cool environment. 

As with every trip on the bike, PIE is a must. The Mill did not disappoint. I took it to go and headed back to the hotel. We chatted a little longer, getting to know each other and had our dessert. It was not a late night, as we were all tired from the day. The weather looked to be great for our Friday ride.  Friday morning came as my alarm went off around 6:30am. I looked out the window of my hotel room. I could feel the smile spread across my face. It was looking like a beautiful day was ahead. It had been a while since I had ridden in Arkansas and to say I was a little excited was a true understatement.  We had breakfast at the Mill and then headed out. We spent the morning doing the Arkansas shuffle. First was 7, then to Jasper, over to 74 across to 123, then 16… yes we were hitting all of the cool stuff. We did Push Mountain twice and just enjoyed a FANTASTIC day in the saddle. 

The only thing missing was my beautiful pillion. I was hoping that she would get to ride with me over this weekend. However she missed the trip for a very good reason. It was Prom weekend and our girl Megan needed some mom help to be prepared. 

Friday evening saw the arrival of the DFW gang. Rick, Robert and Yeeha joined us. We went over and had a great dinner and just caught up. It had been a while since I had got to spend some time with the gang. I don’t really miss North Texas (except for my wife and daughter) but I do miss my moto friends. This was a much needed fix. 

Saturday morning greeted us with sunshine and promises of a great day of riding. It would not disappoint. We had another rider join us today. Bill came over from the Fayettville area to ride with us. He and his wife Gayla are the presidents of the Arkansas MSTA chapter. Gayle could not make it but I look forward to riding with her as well. Bill rolled into town on Saturday morning. I met him for a quick cup of coffee while he had a little breakfast. 

After we got back to the hotel, and all of the introductions were complete, we hit the road. Today we rode around Bull Shoals, did the ferry thing, rode some fun roads in Missouri, enjoyed each others company and did another lap on Push Mountain. I forgot to mention lunch. We had some tasty pizza at Bush’s Pizza on Bull Shoals. It was worth the wait!

Bill broke off and headed home as the rest of us headed back to Harrison. We enjoyed a nice steak dinner with a couple of adult beverages that evening. It was a great way to end the day. It was a day of telling stories, getting to know new friends and reconnecting with old ones. The weather was AMAZING! It stayed cool enough where the gear was nice to have on but not unbearable. If the weather would stay like this for the next 3 months, life would be so good! Yes I am greedy. 

Sunday is get away day. The DFW gang was headed back to Texas. Barbara and Steve headed back to Tulsa and I took the long way home to Joplin. We said our goodbyes and parted ways. I can’t wait to ride with the DFW gang again real soon. 

Barbara, Steve and myself headed down to Granny Kitchen in Huntsville Arkansas. I had messaged a long time friend to see if he could join us for breakfast. I have known Paul for many years,  12+ and it is always great seeing him. The good news is, Jamie and I will get to see him more often as he lives in the Spingdale area. We will be neighbors soon. We enjoyed a good breakfast and even better conversation. This was a wonderful way to close out this weekend. After breakfast, I said my goodbyes to Barbara and Steve. I look forward to riding with them again real soon. Great people and we got to share some interesting stories. I am looking forward to being closer to Paul. We will get to spend more time together and get some riding in real soon. 

I took some fun roads home to Joplin. Love the fact that I can be home in a few hours from such great riding in Arkansas. I am really looking forward to Jamie joining me in NorthWest Arkansas. 

On a back road I was reminded of my days in Texas as a steer greeted me, as I was making my way home. Until next time everyone! Ride safe! – You can see all of the pictures here.