Thursday, September 27, 2007

Muskoka And Back

A colourful day........

Last evening at the monthly Freedom Riders supper, Leo (remember him from the May Georgia trip?) and I talked about taking a ride today.  We thought maybe south.  Leo called Dave Butler, a rider we have known since the old Nickel Rider days, to see if he wanted to go.  He said yes.

Leo showed up at 8:50 this morning, ready to go.  Surprised me because I thought he said 10:00, but he said we were supposed to be across town in ten minutes.  I dressed quickly.  We headed out through the same damn construction I came in through last week.  Still no change.  We got to Timmy's in the south end a tad late, and Dave was already there with his 1986 K model BMW.  It looks like Dave has the go ahead to upgrade and has his eye on a 1998 RT.

We set out south on Hwy 69 towards Parry Sound.  It was 16C when we pulled out but rapidly dropped to 12C and then 10 before we got forty miles out of town.  We were in a mild overcast with some light fog before breaking out of it south of the French River.  We arrived in Parry Sound without incident.

The trees are changing more north of the French, although all along there are long stretches of green punctuated by sections with brilliant yellows, oranges, reds and burgundies.  The leaves haven't started falling yet, so this is the best time of fall.

We had coffee in Parry Sound and then headed south on Old Hwy 69 to Hwy 141.  It was a spirited ride through the sweepers from Humphrey to Rosseau.

20070927 Bracebridge 001

Here we are at a small park in Rosseau.  Leo is on the left and Dave is in the red.  Lake Rosseau, behind me when I took this, has some cottages of the rich and famous on it.  Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn, Steve Martin and others have found this to be an excellent getaway.

I mounted the solid state video camera I've been testing and followed Dave and Leo on the next (and best) part of 141.  Unfortunately, we ended up behind three slug vehicles that slowed for every corner.  By the time we passed them, we had missed some of the best curves but we made the best of the ones remaining until we got to Bracebridge.

I stopped the camera when we got into town.  After lunch at Harvey's (another Canuckian phenomena) and 95.5 cent gas at Crappy Tire (still one more), I let Stella take us back to Rosseau via Hwy 118.  The plan was to go to Port Carling and then cut up the west side of the lake to Rosseau.  Stella had other ideas.  When we turned off 118, I started the camera again, thinking this was the road I wanted.  Instead, it took us to Windermere Road and up into Ullswater.  This meant we had to ride 141 back to Rosseau from Ullswater, but this wasn't a problem since this is the absolute best part of the road.

In Rosseau, I stopped and took the camera off.  Then Leo and I traded bikes for the rest of Highway 141.  Not counting my mechanics and Sherm, Leo is the first person other than me to ride this bike.  After a few miles on his R1150RS, I am amazed that he went all the way to Georgia with me on it.  It certainly isn't my style.

Trading back, we road Rankin Lake Road back to Old 69 and on into Parry Sound where we swung onto New 69/400.  As we turned on the ramp, there was an OPP cruiser with a constable standing on the roadside.  Seatbelt check, I guess.

We made one more stop at Timmy's in Nobel, where a fellow from Kincardine pulled in on a 1976 Honda 750.  It looked pretty good.  Dave also talked to some Bultaco fans, since he deals in them.  Then we headed for home, stopping to take a couple of inadequate tree shots.

20070927 Bracebridge 002

20070927 Bracebridge 003

There were so many more that were better than this, but I was past them before I could stop and we were running too short of time to turn around.  Maybe I'll take another run down in the next few days and get some better ones.

We also got to see one of the new black and white OPP cruisers with the red and BLUE lights pull someone over.  I know blue lights are old hat in most states, but up until now the only things in Ontario that had them were snow plows. 

We got in before 5:00 after covering over 300 miles.  It was a good day.  The only bad part was that when I went to upload the video footage, I somehow either erased or overwrote the first segment.  The second, with me leading, is pretty good right up until the camera shut itself off (for some unknown reason) part way through the Bent River Chicane.  If I ever get a camera, it's going to have easier buttons to use.

Here's to some more great fall riding days before winter storage time arrives.

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