It felt really good to get into the “mountains”, okay compared to the Rockies the Ozarks aren’t much in the way of mountains but curvy forest roads are far preferable to flat plains in this rider’s opinion. This was one of the most enjoyable days on the scoot since we left Pinedale. There were moments on days 6 & 7 that were lots of fun. Maybe it is just the contrast with the last couple of days with flat and boring, or high winds, or sleet and snow but it was a great break from the bad weather.
Earlier I passed Eric on the side of the road. The California support truck was with him and there was little I could do so I continued on without stopping. When I rolled into the Super 8 in El Dorado, Arkansas I found out that he had plugged a tire leak only to be hit with some sort of fuel delivery issue a few miles after he got back on the road. Eric was trying to either get it running again on the roadside or he’d have to trailer it the short distance to the hotel. Which is what he ended up doing with a plan on getting it running hopefully with assistance from Mike Smith – Helix guru and Hank, the other Helix rider in the cannonball in time to go back to where he was trailered from in time to finish the last leg before midnight.
Bill’s scoot also came in on a support truck with more serious issues. Mark (Maroy), Doug (Old as Dirt), Binh (DaBinChe) and several others worked with Bill to get frozen parts off his GT. Tom (Bagel), the crazy guy who did an Iron Butt on his way TO the cannonball start allowed Bill to take parts off his no longer running GT to get back on the road. Tom was extremely generous allowing his GTS to supply parts to several folks once it was clearly going to be on the truck for the rest of the trip. Never fear though, Tom had a spare GTV in Austin he managed to get friends to truck up to Norman so while he was out of the cannonball competition he was still able to ride most days.
Being the last night the plan was to go dinner as a very large group. Kudos to Dave (Feb31st) who tends to leave at the crack of dawn well before anyone else for securing space for such a large group at a downtown Mexican restaurant – one that did serve margaritas.
In the meantime more work went on in the parking lot.
Vintage repairs were often the most creative. I believe I was told that is a bathroom fan duct taped to Greg’s (Wire89) 1964 Vespa GL150 (newer 1983 engine)
None of the modern scooters including Linda (Teacherquinn) replacing her lost tail light with a trailer light reached quite that level of creative repairs IMHO.
Not all of the scooters needed work.
Soon it was time to head off for dinner. I think even those who still had work to do were glad of a break.
It did take awhile for everyone to get served but that’s what happens when you have a group of 40+ people show up for dinner on a few hours notice.
Everyone to the back row table in this photo except the guy in the green shirt bottom left is either a rider or providing support for a cannonball rider. Well except for the guy on the left with the gray shirt. That’s Mike’s son who came over to visit with his dad while he was more or less nearby.
By the time Eric got his Helix running again it was too late to return to where his scoot went on the trailer to finish the last leg of the day. Ed tracked down his short and Bill was able to get his GT running again. By morning only Bagel’s GTS was still on the truck since David (Cochid) left the cannonball when he was unable to find replacement parts in time to get back in. Pity he wasn’t able to get running again or find a second scoot to finish riding the cannonball with like Bagel was able to do. We hardly had a change to get to know him.
Tomorrow is the last day with this group of fine folks before we start scattering back across the US and Canada, bittersweet.