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I left Tuesday morning for the northern part of the Sandhills area of Nebraska. Spent Tuesday afternoon, Wednesday, and Thursday roaming around on very rural 2 lanes just south of the South Dakota border. Actually I did cross over into South Dakota Thursday, and found a wonderful road with some tight curves - unlike the gradual sweepers that exist in the Sandhills occasionally. Rode back home this morning. The entire trip was on 2 lane roads, with speed limits typically 60 or 65 mph, except when passing through the occasional small town. I covered a bit over 1000 miles in all.

A lot of the recreational riding was through very unpopulated country. I could often ride for a half hour or longer without seeing another vehicle. Rarely saw a building or any sign of civilization - just herds of cattle scattered here and there. The landscape and the sky seemed absolutely huge. One of the routes I rode was aptly nicknamed the "Cowboy Trail" on my map. I remember thinking how much trouble I'd be in if the Burgman broke down out there... The cattle seemed to find me interesting. Sometimes an entire herd would collectively lift their heads and watch me ride by. No place to buy gas on those roads, so I had to keep a close eye on the fuel gauge, because it might be 30 miles to the nearest road that cut south - and then another 20 miles to a town big enough to have gas stations.

Further south, on the more populated roads, small towns were still 30 miles or further apart. I saw one extremely small Suzuki dealer and one equally small Kawasaki dealer. The only things parked out front were ATV's. Not very promising if I needed scooter support...

The scooter did well though. All of the modifications I've done worked out well. The Ikons shocks smoothed out rough roads nicely. The Clearview XXL windscreen kept me sane on Wednesday when I encountered high winds all day. The Pirelli rear tire did it's job, and the re-upholstered seat was comfortable. The Remus pipe gave me audible feedback on engine load, without being intrusive.

A couple of minor issues surfaced. The centerstand started sticking again. I need to try some 3-in-1 oil on the pivots. For the rest of the trip, I used the sidestand wherever I could, and had to remember to lift the centerstand fully up with my foot when I did use it. On the last two mornings, I heard a minor squeal, just after starting the engine in the morning. I'd guess that it came from the CVT belt. Someone mentioned finding their CVT filter clogged with dirt - I think I'll check mine this weekend. A little dust on the belt might be the problem.

I packed an unbelievable amount of stuff under the seat, including a good size duffel bag with my clothes in it. The Givi trunk was also about 3/4 full. I did not end up needing the hump bag, so I left that home. Of course, I left a lot of that stuff in the Hotel during the week.

I avoided the major "tourist attractions" this trip. There are some up in that area, enough to justify another trip later on. I saw some interesting terrain, and talked to some very friendly and interesting people along the way. I had a good time.
 

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Sounds like my kind of trip. Better add that one to the list!!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
You could always ride Nebraska Rt 12 on your way to the Badlands & Black Hills of South Dakota... Just keep an eye on the gas gauge. Most gas is a few miles south on Rt 20, and even there it can be 20 or 30 miles between small towns. At Valentine, NE, fill up the tank and head north on Rt 83 through the Rosebud Indian Reservation. It will take you up to I90 in SD, about 70 miles from the Badlands. The little town of Mondo, where you intersect with I-90 has an auto museum - about 250 cars I think. Might be worth a visit if you like old cars.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Rod said:
where did you stay overnight?
I stayed at the Golden Hotel in O'Neil, NE on the Cowboy Trail trip. $29 per night. Not fancy, but the bed was fine and the shower worked and you could walk to restaurants, pubs etc. after the riding day was done. Parking is on street, but it was never a problem to park where the scooter was visible from the lobby. There is a cafe across the street for breakfast.

I stayed at the Redwood Motel in Wassa, SD on th Black Hills trip. Again, not fancy at $35 per night. Biggest drawback was a course gravel parking lot. I didn't like that - but I managed to get the scoot in and out OK. No nearby services - have to ride to Wall 11 miles east for restaurants, etc.
 

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Last month when I took my trip to Spokane I found a motel for $29.95/night. Couldn't figure out why it was so cheap. Comfortable bed; nice, clean bathroom; cable TV w/ Showtime & HBO.

I found out why when, at 3AM, a train went by on the elevated, unseen, track right behind -- and I mean right behind -- my room. :shock:
 

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Brian said:
I found out why when, at 3AM, a train went by on the elevated, unseen, track right behind -- and I mean right behind -- my room. :shock:
Cool! Could lead to some interesting dreams. :wink:

Yeah, There is always something with a $30 room. But the difference between a $30 dollar room and a $90 dollar room buys a lot of meals and gasoline...

The Redwood Motel room didn't have a bureau in it. The Golden Hotel wasn't equipped to process long distance calls (needed phone card or cell phone - but the woman who runs the place offered to let me use her personal cell phone if mine didn't work there). Forget about clock radios and hair dryers and irons and high speed internet connections. But both places were acceptably clean and quiet, I slept well, and the showers worked fine. That's about all I look for in a $30 room...
 

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pauljo said:
Brian said:
ar room buys a lot of meals and gasoline...

Forget about clock radios and hair dryers and irons and high speed internet connections. But both places were acceptably clean and quiet, I slept well, and the showers worked fine. That's about all I look for in a $30 room...
I cant stay in a place without broadband....
 

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abm said:
Brian said:
ar room buys a lot of meals and gasoline...

Forget about clock radios and hair dryers and irons and high speed internet connections. But both places were acceptably clean and quiet, I slept well, and the showers worked fine. That's about all I look for in a $30 room...
I cant stay in a place without broadband....
I didn't write the quote attributed to me; pauljo did.
 
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