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Ozark run


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Monday and Tuesday of this week, I took an overnighter in the Ozark mountains of Arkansas.  Two of us were supposed to go, but my friend had to cancel at the last minute due to work and family emergencies.  First a quick run across the Delta and up into the mountains.  Then loosely followed the Buffalo River crossing at a few different points.  This photo is from near the Hasty boat launch.
I stopped at the Rush zinc mining "ghost town".  More of a mining work site run from the late 19th century through WWII along Rush Creek (that feeds into the Buffalo).
And on to Rush Landing along the Buffalo River.
Never seen this sign before (pavement ends).
Continued on from Rush through Hasty to Jasper for dinner.
Caught a couple of folks checking out the FJ while I was eating.
Based on weather, this was planned to be a camping trip. Then we had the cold snap after weekend rains.  It was still a camping trip, but at 26 degrees.  With a sleeping bag rated to 30.  I camped at Steel Creek near Ponca. It was a wide open field but close to the river.  The new tent worked great and, with most of my clothes on and my Aerostich pulled over my legs, the bag did, too.  I'm VERY glad I added my heavier Thermarest pad on top of my seat bag at the last minute.  New moon and no clouds meant beautiful stars.  Day 2 started cold but quickly warmed up into the 50s.
Headed back through Jasper with a quick stop for photos at Wayne's Place.  Near as I can figure, that's the front half of an Oldsmobile.  Could be the 3.8L V6 with transaxle out behind the motorcycle front end to make a rear wheel drive trike.
Started heading home from there.  Stopped at the Arkansas "Grand Canyon" then Marshall for lunch.  Took a short hike at Pedestal Rocks to sightsee, but I didn't capture any good photos.
My original plan had been to run Push Moutain Road then home. I considered skipping it for time, but it's just too good not to ride. I at least had a pleasant cruise from Harding back to Jonesboro before jumping on the interstates home.  Almost 900 miles, total.
Givi handguards and windshield worked well.  Bose earbuds worked better than 32 dB Leight earplugs.  There is popping around other traffic at highway speeds and crosswinds, but they're still overall quieter than the earplugs.  With heated grips, I was able to wear summer gloves (with much better feel than my winter gloves) into the 30s.  I regretted not bringing my electric jacket especially Monday morning.  I had planned just to bulk up to have the layers at night, but left most layers and electrics at home.
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Sounds like a great trip! Even though you had to do it alone, and in a bit colder weather than I'm sure you wanted.
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Sweet!I've been on a few of those roads and they are great. We make a ride up there every May. One of my good friends has an uncle in Ponca and we base camp from his place. We are going for Memorial day weekend this year and you are more than welcome to do some riding with us.
Ozark cafe has a good breakfast too!
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Great ride! Happy you didn't freeze.
From the picture of the bike covered in frost, it looks like he DID freeze... Brrr! 

***2015 Candy Red FJ-09***

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Thanks. Pulled into the campground after dark and set up the tent for the 2nd time no problem (1st time was in my living room). It was GREAT to sit under the stars by the river before it got really cold. I mean like released a month of stress great.
And... I bring a roll of toilet paper everywhere. Just in case. One in my truck. One when touring - bicycle or motorcycle. And it finally came in handy - one vault toilet + 20 or 30 campsites = no toilet paper. Prepared!
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