Ozark’s to York PA 2016 Day 2

Steve Kinchen, Sr/ May 28, 2016/ BMW R1200RT, General Rants & Raves About Riding, New Orleans to Ozarks to York 2016, Touring/ 0 comments

Departure Location: Hot Springs, Arkansas

Time: 08:10

Weather Conditions: 68

Daily High Temperature: 89

Destination: Eureka Springs, Arkansas

Arrival Time: 18:53

Daily Miles Logged: 392

State Visited: Arkansas, Oklahoma

Our route for day 2 of our quest to ride all that Arkansas has to offer!

After the challenges of the day yesterday, we were unbelievably blessed with amazing weather, fantastic roads, and beautiful scenery.  We left a little later than we had planned due to a last minute cancelation from another rider that was going to join us for the day.  Mark was also feeling a little sore from his tip over at the gas station yesterday, so he decided to take a direct route to the hotel and rest up to be better for the comings days riding.

It was worth the ride to get the shot, regardless of the fog!

Without much fanfare, we were off to ride the Talimena Nation Scenic Byway that follows the ridgeline of the Winding Stair Mountain and ultimately leading us to Southeaster Oklahoma.  We were treated to a few sharp curves and a varying grade switchback that were a precursor to what the day held in store.  Most of the scenic spots along this route were blanketed with fog to the point of obscuring visibility much beyond the guard rails in the parking areas.

I guess they wanted to live up to their name…

Hey Jon, get your hands off of my pizza!

Way to let folks know where you are and that you’re open for business!

We found ourselves in a small town named Heavener, OK where it appears there is but one place open to eat on a Saturday afternoon, Simple Simons Pizza.  It seemed like a relatively new establishment in certain respects as towards the back of the building there were boxes that still needed to be unloaded and their contents placed in their new home.  There was no signage outside the building advertising its existence, and we just happened upon it as we were looking for a different establishment that was closed for the weekend.  The food lived up to its name… simple, no frills pizza and calzones with just a small range of choices.  The crust was acceptable, but a bit too doughy for my taste and it had a sweetness that was a little off putting.  The toppings were typical pizza schlock with little finesse or personality in its presentation and there was a glaring omission of parmesan cheese from the table.  We were the only diners in the restaurant at the time and I must admit, more than once I thought how long would they survive?

As the day progressed, we had to postpone our visit to Mount Nebo until another day, but we followed the Pig Trail towards Mount Magazine.  Here we were treated to what is known as one of the most enjoyable motorcycle rides in Arkansas.  This short loop circles where the Ozarks meets the Ouachita Mountains and features the highest mountain peak in the State of 2,753 feet.  This ten mile loop is often compared to the infamous “tail of the dragon” in Robbinsville, NC, but I did not find it to be nearly as challenging.

It was hot and we were bushed…

Jon made a new friend!

We found our way to what will be our “camp” for the next few nights in Eureka Springs and, other than a mix up with Trent’s reservation, everything was in order for our stay.  Dinner was a quick bite at the hotel restaurant where I ordered the “open-faced” hot roast beef sandwich.  This was just ok and not worthy of a photo to document its existence and there was a scoop of the absolute worst mashed potatoes on my plate that was inedible covered in a thick gelatinous gravy that could double as library paste, that is, if there is ever a shortage of library paste.

Tomorrow, we will ride a big loop totaling nearly 309 miles continuing our exploration of all that Arkansas has to offer the motorcycle enthusiast.

The open road awaits and she sings the sirens song…

-Steve

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