On the Road: From Buffalo to Idaho and Back
(Page 16 of 19)
There are some really nice roads in Missouri and Arkansas on and around US 62 into Eureka Springs. We took turns leading, and this time I missed a turn, but fortunately didn’t go too far before I noticed the Bandit’s headlight was missing in the mirrors (just cars). We stopped at a little store about 10 miles out of town to grab something cold (it had cooled to maybe 95, but now had the added feature of humidity!). They were actually closed, but the proprietor was kind enough to get us each a pop (sorry, “soda” to the rest of the world…). I drove the rest of the way in, and actually didn’t drive past the campground in the dark (I did just that about 10 years ago… but the signs are better now!). We idled through the place looking for Craig’s FJR1300 Yamaha, and there was Craig waving a flashlight to direct us in. Craig had ridden up to Eureka Springs from Russellville, AR earlier, and we’d been playing phone tag as we were both en route. He’d reserved the spot for us before the office closed, and I guess it was close to Midnight when we arrived. The last time I stayed here we’d gotten in about 3 AM. It’d be nice to see what the place looks like in the daytime someday!
June 24, 2010
I probably shouldn’t even be telling you this, because I don’t want you, your friends, and your families to spoil it for me, but Eureka Springs and the whole northwestern part of AR is probably among the best motorcycling roads you’ll find anywhere. The ‘Springs is just a lovely town with older Victorian style homes (“painted ladies” we’d call them in the Allentown District at home). They even painted the curbs red throughout the town. There are plenty of boutique style shops, and all manner of things to do there. You’ll find grand old architectural treasures; along with plenty of fun for the kids, and a wealth of naturally mountain fed public springs that are the town’s namesake. You could easily spend a week in the area, and Branson, MO is right up the road too.
But I’d been telling Mike about Route 23 for years now, and I wanted to see if it was as good as I remembered. If you’re reading this you’re obviously into bikes. But if you’re really into turning, accelerating, and braking hard with them (ie: with sport bikes or sport touring rigs), then this is where -- if you’ve been really good -- you go when you finally “walk into the light.” Craig led us though some wonderful roads the next day, and being able to ride the whole day without rain AND luggage was immensely liberating. Clearly my old GS Suzuki is seriously overmatched by Craig’s sweet ride, and Craig’s a very good rider, but he did a nice job of creating the illusion that I was doing a pretty good job hanging with him. We had lunch at Cliff House, whose deck majestically overlooks the deepest valley in the Ozarks. We enjoyed a great reasonably priced meal, some nice raspberry iced tea, and I picked up a couple of tee shirts for my wife and my new granddaughter there too (really nice little gift shop). Then it was back off for an afternoon fang around the Ozarks, with a little sightseeing mixed in. We had a remarkable opportunity for Mike to get some nice close up pictures of a few of the members of the elk herd that inhabits the area.
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