Tuesday, July 13, 2010

BMW Rally 2010 - Day 5

This morning we got a late start because we didn't have so far to go. So we slept late, ate breakfast at Peggy's Place and then shipped some things from the Keystone Post Office. While at the post office we met a gentleman from Canada who works at the Can Am Spyder factory and he pointed out the part that he's responsible for building. That was sort of a cool way to start the morning. Reagan found out, there's a 50 percent chance that he actually worked on her bike. Cool.

We left Keystone on US 16 toward Deadwood. Then picked up 385 north toward Deadwood. The scenery was great, temperatures were cool and traffic was minimal most of the time. When we arrived in Deadwood we parked in the city parking garage and walked around the tourist section of town. Reagan wanted to show me where Wild Bill Hikcok was shot. Unfortunately the bar was closed for renovations so we couldn't go in. Although the sign said closed for renovations, it looked more like they had just closed and never reopened. But time will tell.

I was sort of turned off with Deadwood as it seemed all there were along the street were places selling bad motorcycle leather and junky western paraphernalia. And lots of casinos. We went inside a museum/casino to get some iced tea and see what was in the museum. There were lots of old cars and bikes from movies, plus various props, costumes and guitars signed by various artists. After a while, I decided to play a slot machine and stuck a dollar bill in and pressed the button to bet 3 credits.  I didn't win but this strange button in the middle kept lighting up. I was unable to get my last credit to play or to get it back. So I just gave up and played another machine while Reagan was playing the slot machine ajacent to it.

Well a little old lady came walking by and asked if anyone was playing the slot machine I had just vacated. I told her I had been and that it was messed up because I couldn't get my last credit out. She told me it wasn't messed up and that she'd split the winnings with me 50/50. It turned out I had won a video bonus round at the top and was supposed to shoot some bottles with that button that kept lighting up. Thank goodness she knew what she was doing because she won 110 coins with that bonus round and then promptly cashed out the machine, handing me 55 quarters. 

I played a few more rounds on other machines but then decided to cash in my luck. The cashier gave me $20 but before we could get out of there Reagan and I spent a few more dollars on the penny slots. Even so we walked out of there ahead. Even after the $8 it cost to park the 2 bikes we still had a few dollars left after the visit to Deadwood.

We left town via US 85 north and followed that all the way to Bowman, North Dakota.  About 40 miles north of Belle Fourche, SD we stopped to gas up and get a bite to eat for lunch.  This store was actually a small 6.5 acres town known as Crows Butte, SD.  It's for sale if you are interested, I think the asking price was $248,000. You get a gas station with 1 pump (diesel and unleaded), 6.5 acres, some RV camping area, and the store has a little kitchen on the back. You'd truly be out in the boonies.

After lunch we continued on toward Bowman. We encountered some construction and had to wait on the pilot truck. Then we resumed our ride into North Dakota. We stopped in Bowman for a bio break and some more fuel. From here it was only 120 miles or so into Miles City so I knew we'd be ok even if we didn't see anymore gas stops. Which we didn't.

We headed west on US 12 from Bowman to Miles City. There was road construction along the way and again we got stopped due to a Pilot Truck but the line started moving just as we arrived so we didn't really have to wait on the Pilot truck. After the construction we had to pass some vehicles and then it was clear sailing into Miles City.

Thanks to the GPS, finding the hotel was a snap. We're staying at the Econolodge tonight just off of I-94. There's a 24 hours Exxon across the street and a family restaurant in the parking lot. There's even free guest laundry machines so we are taking care of laundry as I type. One other thing that makes this place a great stop is the friendly service. The young girl is friendly and helpful.

Today we travelled 316 miles with an elapsed time of 7 hours 48 minutes. We didn't even get on the road until 8:45 this morning but the temperature never seemed to get above 85. The only time I found it uncomfortable was when we were riding along in the second construction zone. At speeds of 10mph, with the bright sun blasting down on my black boots, I thought it was going to roast my left foot. But once we got back to regular cruising speeds it was nice and cool.

Tomorrow night we'll be in Redmond, Oregon. Reagan's plan is to leave the gas station by 5am. If all goes according to Reagan's plan, we'll be at the Super 8 by 8pm (10pm CDT). We are gaining an hour of day light thanks to the time shift, so the whole ride should happen in daylight with the exception of a few minutes in the morning.  We will see.

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