Wednesday, September 25, 2019

A Drive though the Heartland: Walking some Great Towns

When we visit Northern Wisconsin, where my mother lives, we like to take new roads.  We love the road less traveled.  This time we decided on a trip to Toronto, Canada, with a stop at Niagara Falls the highlight of our trip.

We had a lot of other stops before then and managed to walk 4 good American Volkssport Association (AMA) Year-Round Events (YRE).  Also, a YRE we walked in Toronto, Canada. These were places that we usually would have just drove by.  It was the walk that made us stop and take a look.  We live on a vast continent; everyone should get out to see it.

Washington, Missouri (YRE) - A fantastic Year-Round Event. A great town with the start point at an actually operating Train station. Just west of St. Louis it has an Amtrak stop.   After leaving Washington, Missouri, we ran across this by accident. Daniel Boone’s Burial site. Pretty cool stuff almost drove right past it.

Galena, Illinois -  There was not an AVA event here, but still a pleasant walk.  Grants home before and after the civil war. He only lived about 3 years in his new house in Galena. His National Campaign HQs was also here in Galena. This impressive town we caught it during the week and after the 4th so no real crowds. We had a great dinner at a German Restaurant.

A great Mississippi River Town. Grants wife was the first wife of a president to be called the First Lady of the land. Later shortened to First Lady. Twain and Grant were good friends, Twain was a big help to Grant in writing his autobiography, which saved his family from financial ruin.

Madison, Wisconsin (YRE) -  I have driven by madison at least 30 times.  It was good to find out what I've been missing. A great walk through the Wisconsin State Capital. Lots of Frank Loyd Wright Architecture. You walk down from the capitol building to the top of the convention center designed by FLW that directly overlooks the lake. Several great parks and lots of significant buildings.

Appleton, Wisconsin (YRE) - A walk thru the downtown and Lawrence University. Also by a Papermill, a Wisconsin staple as much as cheese. Also interesting the first-ever hydroelectric power station.

Manitowoc, Wisconsin (YRE) -  Before taking the Ferry over to Michigan, we walked Manitowoc, there was no walk box, but we registered online for the 5K.  We also went to the Wisconsin Maritime Museum. Very interesting, there were 29 submarines manufactured here during WWII. The ferry ride was a hoot 4-hours across the lake on the SS Badger the only active coal-fired vessel in the US, a working national landmark.

Toronto, Ontario (Canadian YRE)- It was an incredible week in Toronto.  This is a foodie town lots of great restaurants.  Last day in Toronto, we did the Ontario Director’s Capital City Walk. We registered for this through the Canadian IVV web site. We had already walked a lot of this over the last 4 days that we’ve been here. It was good to see the Capital of Ontario, Toronto University, and we were surprised by a Netflix mini-series that’s being filmed downtown. They say the name is top secret and will make its Premiere in about a year.

Niagara Falls, Ontario-  On the way home it was a short stop at Niagra Falls there was another  Canadian YRE here, but we are ready to get back home.  So it was a quick tour of the falls, then a long drive home.

This was a great trip saw a lot of neat things the highlights were doing the walks and seeing Niagra Falls.  Thanks to the Canadian Volkssport Association for the ease of online registering for the Canadian marches. We will be back. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Col Sanders and Undiscovered Roads in Eastern Kentucky

There are a lot of excellent motorcycle roads to ride in east Kentucky. I have only scratched the surface there.  I’m the type of person that hates to ride the same route more than twice, I love to take the road lightly traveled.

So Terri and I decided to take a ride to Corbin Kentucky home of Col Sanders and the original Kentucky Fried Chicken.  Someone told me that they invented the chicken here, then came the egg.  When I was a kid in Oak Harbor, Washington, one of the only chain restaurants in town was the KFC on Pioneer Ave.  My Mom ever once in a while would bring home a bucket after work.  Even though today we rarely eat at KFC, it was good to see this historic site.  It started all here, where fast food was invented.

To get there, we take TN 52 to Red Boiling Springs.  Then TN56 up to Kentucky 100 to KY 90 to KY 92 across the Plateau to Corbin Kentucky.   These are some fantastic motorcycle roads that must be ridden with a shout out to KY100; this road is a must.

After the original KFC, Cumberland Falls was a bit of a letdown, but it was refreshing to see. Great riding on the Cumberland Plateau. This waterfall called the Niagra of the south is on the Cumberland River.  This river flows through Nashville and then Clarksville. All this water is making a slow journey to the Mississippi River.

 After the falls, we ride back to KY 90 to Whitley City to stay the night. Next morning KY 92 to 90, then come across to KY 163 back through Red Boiling Springs Tennessee.   Tennessee Highway 52 is a familiar way home.  In all, this was a challenging 2-day ride.  There are many great roads in Kentucky.  I want to ride every one of them.