2011 Goshen motorcycle trip

August 4

I put my bag on the backseat, and it took up the whole space. Where to put my laptop that I hadn't planned to bring? After some ponderance I decided to take the trailer...that I hadn't planned to pull.

And so started our second long weekend trip of the year. Destination...Northern Indiana. Goshen to be exact. Cruise the flatlands. Hit a craft fair. Relax.

The inviting morning sky looks promising. The past 20+ days we have had temperatures over 90* and heat indexes in the 100-110 range. The weatherman says the next couple days should be better with the temperatures in the 80's.

There is some low lying fog and the temps are frisky as I head the three miles into town.

Bedford, IN. 6:53 am. Mileage 53,268 - Normally we meet at John & Debby's house but today it's the BRMC parking lot next to Mike & Jerri's house. John & Debby were talking motorcycles with BRMC maintenance supervisor Phil Crulo when I arrived.

The route today will bring back memories of our South Dakota trip as we'll take SR39 through Danville. We'll ride a country route to avoid Indianapolis before linking up with US31. John has been looking for LED lights for his trike and trailer, and I have been wanting to find some antenna ferrules, so we'll be hitting some truck stops along the way. At 7:06 we fired up the bikes and took the new road that now connects the BRMC parking lot with Michael Avenue.

I-70 & SR39 Travel America. 8:19, mileage 53,328 - Fuel up, then went inside to look for LEDs and parts. Hmmmmmm...pretty sad selection.

We went to the attached restaurant and had breakfast. Pork chops and eggs for me. We spent almost an hour and a half here before moving on in ever increasing temperatures. Being close to Indy I listened to Q95.

Lebanon, IN. We stopped at a Pilot truck stop to look for LED lights. Hmmmmmm...the exact same wimpy selection as the Travel America we had stopped at earlier. I had went to the Travel America truck stop in Seymour a couple weeks ago and it was the same. It looks like they all stock the same stuff. Discouraging.

We spent some time socializing in the parking lot before moving on.

I need one of these in my yard producing income.

A tower repo? We saw several of these.

After our recent Georgia trip Mike has been looking for a larger road bike. As we rode up US31 John and I were talking on the CB about Maxx Pitts Honda in Peru. They are a large Honda dealer. A plan was being hatched. We could stop and check out bikes. After all, it's a vacation. They might have something Mike would like. I always input the local Honda dealers into the GPS when we go on trips, so I had it take us to Maxx Pitts.

The GPS led us here. An abandoned building. John googled a phone number and called them.

Maxx Pitts is now Maximum Powersports and they are no longer a Honda dealer. They had a nice GL1500 that had sold earlier. That was the only Goldwing and the only touring bike they had.

Peru, IN. 13:20, mileage 53,442 - We rode up to another truckstop for fuel and lunch at Subway. They had the same poor selection of LED lights. Since we were now in bike hunting mode we found there was a Honda dealer in Elkhart. We might go there later.

Goshen. 15:52 - We arrived at our home for the next few days. It was a scenic ride up. People stereotypically think of Indiana as flatland. The northern half of Indiana is. Flat as a pancake.

We lashed the trailers together and checked into our rooms.

About 4:30 we met up outside for the ride to Elkhart. As we stood there I heard something I haven't heard for awhile. The rumbling of a train. Then about a half mile east I saw it. Apparently Goshen is on a busy mainline between Fort Wayne and South Bend. I'd hear and see lots of trains this weekend.

We took the GPS-chosen route up US33 to the Honda dealer in Elkhart. Holy stoplights, Batman. It took us forever to get there.

The GPS led us precisely to North End Cycle. They have a good sized store. They had a couple 2010 Goldwings and a few of the newer 2012's. The bike that caught our attention was a used 2003 GL1800. Burgundy red. Lots of nice accessories...CB, spoiler, luggage rack, backrest. Not chromed out. ~26K miles. When a salesman came by we asked the price. Not for sale. A regular customer had put a deposit on it. John was still curious how much they were asking for it so the salesman said he would find out. We started wandering around the store.

The next bike Mike and John honed in on was a 2006 Yamaha Venture. It was a similar color to the Goldwing, and had driving lights and a luggage rack. The exhaust tips were turned to the side (looked odd) and the price tag said $11,499. A little high. Mike sat on it. He's tall and the cruiser style seating fits him a little better than the Goldwing style. He talked to a salesman about getting a trade-in price for his bike.

Meanwhile, we had meandered back to the Goldwing. The salesman came by and said they were asking $13,499 for it. Not a horrible price. Too bad it's not for sale. "It's for sale", said the salesman. What? It's for sale now? He said he spoke with the owner who said it could be for sale if someone was interested. Hmmmmmm.

We moved back over to the Venture to look at it again. The salesman came by to tell Mike he could sell him the Venture for his bike plus $7500. What?!?! No way. We moved back over to the Goldwing. The salesman came over while we were looking and had more news. Now the owner says there's something on the Goldwing that needed fixed so now it's not for sale again. What???? This is getting silly.

It was getting near closing time so we headed to the bikes. As we were milling around the salesman came out and told Mike he could drop his price on the Venture by $500. Nope. He did tell us of a good restaurant down the road, and he told us a much better route to take back to the hotel. He said he would talk to the owner and see if he could get Mike a better price on the Venture, and he would call him by 10:30 the next day (he never did).

We rode up the road to the recommended Mexican restaurant. I had a chicken chimichanga. It was pretty good. It had a white cheese sauce, and sometimes things like that can mess with my innards.

Debby remembered the salesman's directions so John led us out of town.

The route back was MUCH nicer. Very little traffic and stoplights.

We stopped at Krogers for some supplies. I got a case of Throwback Mountain Dew.

We saw a paraplane at a high altitude.

We got back to the hotel a little after 9pm. We stood in the parking lot discussing the day's events. The trip to the Honda shop had been a little odd and disappointing. I listened to more trains passing by. The evening weather was perfect.

We retreated to our rooms to clean up and do our nightly stuff. For me, that involves downloading pictures and GPS tracks. Hmmmmmmm...I left my USB cable at home. Crap. I'll need to get a cable. I had also assumed my room had a refrigerator. It didn't. Warm pop.

John texted me and said he was going outside to smoke. I met him out front on the bench. We decided to do an internet search of area Honda dealers to see what was available. We found the Honda dealer in Plymouth had a 2006 Midnight Venture (nicer edition) with less miles and a $1000 lower asking price. We would meet in the breakfast room at 8:30 in the morning and talk to Mike about it.

Later that night the white cheese sauce started to make itself known...grrrrrrrrr.

281 miles.

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