Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Day 2 – 584 miles

i90 rain BELLE FOURCHE, S.D. – I did another 584 miles today, 4 miles less than yesterday but way easier despite encountering rain.

My day started with free breakfast at the Crossroads Best Western Motel in Council Bluffs. There were no empty tables, so I asked to join a guy who turned out to be a pipe fitter named Kip from Kansas City who rides motorcycles and used to have a BMW. It was a pleasant start to a good day.

The weather was clear and cool through the morning, but began to warm a bit by the time I got to Chamberlain, S.D. where I had a cheeseburger at Dairy Queen and called in a reservation to the Econo Lodge in Belle Fourche (pronounced Bell Foosh).

Back on the road, I noticed rain on the western horizon and nursed the hope that it would track south of I-90. It didn’t and I pulled under an overpass on a surface road east of Belvidere to pull on my Frogg Toggs rainsuit top and wait for the rain to slacken. Presently a couple of guys joined me. The were brothers – one a Harley rider from the Bakersfield, Calif. and the other a Gold Wing rider from eastern South Dakota. They were headed west too – aiming for Bakersfield.

Presently the rain slowed to a drizzle and I headed off again, but ran into heavier rain a few miles on that forced me under another overpass for a few minutes.

The rain was made worse by a strong crosswind from the south that amplified the windblast from trucks at stretches where construction routed eastbound traffic into one of the westbound lanes.

Somewhere along the line, I crossed into the Mountain Time Zone and arrived at the motel at 5:15 p.m. MDT, rather than the 6:15 p.m. my watch and bike clock and GPS registered.

Dinner was a so-so chicken enchilada at the American West Bar & Grill next door to the motel.

Barring any surprises, a four-hour ride should put me at the rally site in Billings around mid-day tomorrow.

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