2014 Outer Banks motorcycle trip

The last few years my brother Monty, Mike Padgett, and I have taken our girlfriends on a fall motorcycle trip. Last year we all had things going on and and a trip never materialized. This past spring Donna and Stephanie decided they wanted to go to the Outer Banks. They chose the hotel they wanted to stay at and some sites to see on the way to/from. Places were added and places were deleted. The days were moved around to fit changing schedules. Eventually it morphed into this trip. We would take four days to ride out, spend three days in the Outer Banks, then take four days coming home.

Mike has been wanting to do a long trip like this since our trips in 2009 and 2010. Unfortunately, his girlfriend changed jobs and wouldn't have enough vacation time to go on the trip, so he had to cancel. He wasn't happy about it and I kept nagging him to go by himself but he couldn't. Too bad. Mike is a great riding partner.

September 3

Eureka, IN. Initial mileage 75,347 - The plan is to leave at 5pm and ride a couple hundred miles to get the trip started. I had the bike pulled around when Donna got home and we packed the trailer.

Monty and Stephanie have arrived. Stephanie put some stuff in my trailer since Monty doesn't want to be a trailer guy. We like to tease him about it.

A couple weeks ago we went on a memorial ride. During the ride my left headset speaker quit. I worked on it when we got home and got it working again. About four miles into this trip the speaker sputtered and died again. Crap! It sucks because one of the nicest parts of the trip is talking to Donna. It breaks up the monotony. Even though I lost 50% of the speakers it felt like I lost 90% of the volume. I kept asking Donna to repeat herself. Looks like I have a project for the trip.

From Orleans the GPS led us down country roads that bypassed Paoli. The roads are nice roads that we've ridden before. The temperature is in the mid-80's. The weather forecast is great.

Eventually we made our way to US150.

This gas station in Galena is where we normally stop on our fall trips. Today we passed it by.

Crossing the I-64 bridge and leaving Indiana. Traffic has been great and we are making good time.

Once we cleared Louisville it felt like we had the interstate to ourselves. It's about this time in a trip when the vacation starts to feel real. You're down the road aways with the whole trip in front of you. Your sweetheart sitting behind you. Good people traveling with you.

Shelbyville, KY. 18:48, mileage 75,452 - This was our first stop on our trip to Georgia this summer and it is our gas stop tonight. No one was really hungry so after a short break we decided to push on to Morehead and check out the restaurants there.

A great picture for the trip. It was nice seeing the black Goldwing in the mirror.

We arrived at our stop for the night, the Morehead, KY Holiday Inn Express, just as the last bit of sunlight disappeared. We checked in, stowed our gear, then met outside to figure out what to eat. We decided on a Mexican restaurant next door to the hotel. The food was good but the service was a little slow. Monty & Stephanie headed back to the room but Donna & I were going to Walmart so I could buy some supplies to fix my helmet speaker.

A few times on the ride today my shifter felt odd. It seemed hard to shift. I thought maybe it needed to be cleaned or the linkage was binding. The thought of a mechanical problem always haunts the back of my mind when we are on trips even though the Goldwing has been super reliable. As we were headed to the nearby Walmart the source of my shifter problems revealed itself when the left side cover fell off against my leg. We pulled into a parking lot and I handed the side cover to Donna.

When I had checked the fluids I guess I hadn't gotten the left side cover back in place properly. It doesn't pop back into place like the right side does. Apparently the loose side cover would move out and get in the way of the shifter. When we got to Walmart I made sure the side cover was securely back in place and I could tell a big difference. I had a lot more room for my foot to shift.

We always seem to go to Walmart on our trips and it was fun walking around this one. I got a soldering iron and a cheap pair of headphones to rob the speakers from. The bike shifted normally on the way back to the hotel. Whew! Problem solved and I could rest easier. It was pushing 11pm by now so I decided to work on the speakers tomorrow. Donna the dynamo (the Donna-mo) had everything unpacked so we watched TV for a while then went to bed. We have a couple stops tomorrow and ~300 miles to ride.

206 miles.

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