First a couple of photos from Michigan where the weather seemed promising early on
We filled up and spotted this beaut doing the same
Great shame we couldn’t hang around for another day as dozens of classic antique cars were arriving in town for the start of The Great Race.
But for us, it was back to the road – in this case US2 which goes all the way across America, clean to Washington, our intended destination.
The weather stayed good almost all day and we made 436 miles – Michigan is a fairly big state and the Great Lakes really are Great Lakes. We rode along R2 with Lake Michigan (apologies for transposing the two lakes in an earlier post – oh, and on the post about the wind on the road from Canada to the USA, I said the wind was 45 -75 mph; it should have been kilometers per hour) on our left for over 150 miles. On the right hand side, we had hundred miles of the Hiawatha National Forest.
We filled up with fuel six times over the whole day – usually at around 70-80 miles. At around 7pm, we had had enough and stopped at a tiny town called Brule – strangely enough, we have stayed there before about four years ago.
The town mainly caters to fishermen and the cabins were rather basic – but clean. Way over-priced at $70 but beggars can’t be choosers. I was a bit disgusted at the thread-bare tiny towels.
But, tired and aching, we got out of our gear, opened the one tin of beer each we had in the saddle bags and collapsed on the bed. I fell asleep very quickly.
we woke bright and bushy-tailed at 6am and were ready for breakfast at 7am! Oh yes, we had gained an hour as we were now on Central Time – that helped a lot.
It was a scrummy brekky
I had the Sportsman
Jan had the Fisherman’s
Back at the motel…..
we got chatting to a Canadian couple who were riding from their home in British Columbia to the other side of Canada – Newfoundland; they were doing the main drag through the USA because the fuel and motels are so much cheaper.
They gave us lots of advice – they had gone through the detours yesterday and warned us about problems in North Dakota where a new oil pipeline is being laid and it is almost impossible to find a motel room all along HW2 as they are all taken by construction workers. We will probably re-think that part of the route across. They also told us a bear had been routing around the trash during the night!
We were on the road by 8am and the clouds soon broke making the riding uncomfortable – we were pretty cold in a very short time and Jan had problems with his visor misting up when we were stuck in traffic in the towns ( the stopping and starting tends to heat the body up and the visor fogs. There were a lot of delays as the severe weather had damaged a lot of roads.
At around 11am we simply had to stop to warm up. So we stopped at this gas station
Well, they sold gas – but it was actually a bar and it even had its own early-morning drunk who the barmaid was trying to send home!
The newspaper on the bar showed this incredible photo
The coffee was good and strong – a nice change from the gas station dishwater usually found – and the barmaid was very friendly and chatty and kept filling our mugs with steaming hot camp-fire strength brew until our circulations were recovered enough to hit the road again.
But first we checked the tyre pressure – and it was free; many gas stations charge for air!
The rest of the ride was tolerance really. Within a short time, we were both cold again. Although the rain did ease off. But, by 3pm, we decided to call it a day. The mileage was only 290 – not enough – but enough in the conditions.
We are now only a few miles from North Dakota now and needing to check out alternative routes. This town is called Crookston. We booked into a motel that seems to cater to construction workers during the week. The room was $50 and is basic but clean.
One final thing…..
Can anyone explain this sign to me? 😀
Next town down the road is Grand Forks and we will be in N Dakota.
All for tonight – bed is calling.
Route Friday and Saturday