Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Tag is On!

Two more tag write ups that I have been putting off.

First:  July 28th took a lovely little saunter towards Madison, GA to capture this little beauty.

Trimble Bridge (area)

I know.  This doesn't appear to be a bridge at all.  See that guy walking down the trail on the other side of the rock pile?  That leads to here:

Trimble Bridge remnants

This was a fun tag to catch for the miles of surrounding gravel roads.  Some would consider this deliciously wonderful.  While others (me) might not be so enthusiastic about it with street tires and little experience.  I can say that I was still fairly excited about it none-the-less.  And part of that excitement came from actually having a little difficulty finding the tag.  This was a well hidden one!  

We took our best guess at the location.  Since it was down gravel roads there wasn't any way to confirm our ideas with a Google Street View.  (Humph...they aren't advanced enough to have all of the roads in all of the countries in all of the world??  They have the Dalton Highway in Alaska for crying out loud!  And my house.  Yes...need to build walls around that...) 

In all, we headed towards the side of the river that "appeared" to have a larger street leading towards it.  It didn't.  And it ended at a little gate that I wasn't about to cross.  Being the South, they have guns (no big deal), but they can be pretty vicious defending their marijuana fields and meth labs down here.  :)

No way am I crossing this fence with the lovely new No Trespassing sign.

Given that we weren't crossing this fence.  And that it didn't matter since the bridge was out, we had to get around that river somehow and to the other end of this road.  The shortest way around was 12 miles.  Not bad.  But I still had to go back a mile of loose gravel into the sun!  We hung a left at the pavement thinking all was well.  Right.  About a mile down the road it turned back to gravel and didn't show any signs of letting up.  I was doing good to reach 20 mph!  Yeah.  And I even negotiated an actual corner!  I would have landed on someones hood it anyone had actually been there, and I never really turned the front wheel more then 15 degrees...but I DID IT!  LOL.

Here is some video to prove it.  I picked the nastiest, most washboard-ish road for you to view.  Mr. Oilburner was checking his speakers when he heard my cackling laughter over the headset.  Not quite what he was expecting.  I was having a grand time over all the bumps.  He was enjoying watching the shock absorber at work.  Ok...and watching my hiney, truth be told.

This was a great road.  I even found the 479 acres that I would love to buy.  Weyerhauser seems to be pulling out of the area.

We made it around the gravel roads and regained solid pavement with a couple more rattles and knocks coming from the bikes.  Upon reaching the other side of the bridge road it was now 2 miles of gravel road...but this one had a few more slopes and slipperies.  I was still game and just followed the leader.  My motorbike didn't always want to follow in the RT's footprints and I squawked a few times when it wasn't going where I thought it should, but we made it.  Now I just had to not dump her in front of the guys walking up from the fishing hole...

With our incorrect location and detour we were sorely behind our hoped for time to reach home.  We started booking it home, but cautiously since it was dusk and I had already seen one deer standing by the side of the road.  It didn't help that we still had our darkly tinted lenses in the helmets.  We stopped to swap them out for clear and let me capture a little sunset.

 Dusk was settling deep into the forest

Sunset over the mirror

But I noticed that my clear lens was terribly dirty and obstructing my view.  We stopped in front of a little church and discovered that it was horribly scratched and mangled.  The only thing we could do was swap in the yellow hi-vis lens to prevent fogging in my shield.  It was quite an experience seeing the night-time world through yellow tinted goggles.  Vehicle headlights were generally yellow.  Except for the people that had new high intensity bulbs.  The bright blue bulbs appeared green to me.  And stoplights. lights were a little on the bluish side.  I really need to take a picture through the lens sometime.  :)

I moved the tag to the little parts dinosaur I had previously written about.

137 miles
Probably a whopping 12 miles of dirt roads  :)
One more tag under my belt
Seeing the world in a different light

Second:  August 8th.  We headed out for a day ride in the general direction of the GA Tag.  Given the wonderful weather, for here, we didn't expect to get it at all.  We just needed somewhere to head.  So the location was only about 20 miles from our house, mostly through urban area.  But we found some back roads to cut through the traffic.

The tag we hoped to get was at South River, in the news here lately.  Mind you, this river runs smack through downtown Atlanta.  Do you think it might not be wise to swim in it?  But people felt that since there was a naturally occurring sandbar here it would make a great swimmin' hole.  People only recently became upset once they realized it was full of dangerous bacteria and virus even though this river has been on the EPA's impaired water list since the early 90's.  People just can't seem to think for themselves anymore.

South River

 Finally!!  A picture of me on my bike!!

We headed down the road with the intention of taking the tag to an interesting archaeological feature that everyone always seems to know about, but has never been.  However, we started talking about the fact that we have been there probably 5 times in the last year.  If we were just going out for a lazy day ride, and didn't really have any hopes of winning the South River tag, why were we going someplace we have been so many times?  Just as we were discussing this we passed a sign for Gray, Ga. 

The wheels started spinning in my head quickly now.  No worries of overheating yet...  One of they guys on the tag boards lives in Gray.  And he is always posting how badly he wants to get one tag or another, but always seems to have an excuse when he doesn't.  Knowing he was a firefighter, my bright idea was to put the tag in front of his firehouse.  Not knowing which one he worked at made that plan a little difficult.  I was actually getting ready to start touring some in the area and see if I could find him.  Instead we rode around the little town looking for an obvious location.  And we found it.

Gray, GA.  Courthouse.
My clue?  "This tag is so hot it should be on fire and needs a fireman to put it out... "

I did give other clues for everyone else in the game... 

Right away people started commenting in.  I wasn't intending on making this difficult at all.  I wanted it to be recognized quickly.  The primary point for the tag games is just to get out and ride.  The secondary one is visiting new places.  So the intent isn't to make a tag difficult to find.  But I wanted this one to be downright easy.  And it was.  Comments of all varieties quickly rang in, but we all knew where it was and who it was intended for.  There was even discussion of moving the thing around the town to mess with him.  But no word from the fireman.  I was disappointed.

My evilness was vindicated in the morning light.  Mr. Oilburner arose early and started thumbing through his reading.  He noticed there had been a flurry of activity during the night.  I had one of the best laughs of a long time at what was written next...

I chuckled over this for days!!  I did ponder over the fact that it had taken him 5 minutes to realize the location.  He later admitted that this is across the street from the church he was married in. He had that tag posted with 40 minutes.  He isn't going to live it down that the tag was placed on his doorstep.  He was never going to live it down if someone snagged it in the morning if he waited.

It was a great day to be tagging.

201 miles
Relaxing roads and a new part of the state
Great weather, a little warm but Dairy Queen compensated nicely


  1. Lori:

    you are very brave to navigate those gravel roads. I hit gravel once when the pavement stopped. They were putting a fresh layer of pea sized gravel on top for the cars to trample down. I tried to follow the wheel tracks but the bike got squirmy and I didn't like the feeling

    You are lucky to live in a very scenic area

    Wet Coast Scootin

  2. Hi Bob! biggest fear...pea gravel. Isn't it insane that it is acceptable to leave roads in conditions like that without thought to two wheeled conveyances?? You didn't like the feel at the time, but I am assuming you made it through alright?

    What really scares me is trying to put your foot/feet down and just having them slide out: so the bike is going down and you are either doing the splits or breaking a leg.

    Thank you for reading. I just discovered your blog a couple days ago and have been reading the overlapping stories from you and Dan from "Musings of an Intrepid Commuter".

    I'm in awe of you thinking it is scenic here when you have cliffs, beaches, oceans and twisties in your backyard! And you are taking some wonderful pictures to capture them!

    Thank you for reading and commenting!


  3. Lori:

    I have frequented your blog many times but have not commented until now. It's funny how you take things for granted, like the water and mountains. You just expect the scenery to be there. All of our waterfalls are in the mountains and you have to hike to most, unlike your waterfall ride where they are just a few feet from your bike. That's why it is nice to be able to see photos from other parts of the country and to meet friends along the way

    Wet Coast Scootin

  4. Hi Bob, Thanks for reading and writing in. Sometimes it's just nice to know there are other people out there! :) It has been a long time since I have been to Oregon and the pictures I see in ride reports are generally landscapes, scrub and twisties. Sometimes you really miss that with the close canopy and humidity here. I agree it is nice when people share, so that you can see what they see every day. Look forward to reading more of your travels too! Thanks for reading!


  5. Dear Beemer Girl (Lori):

    At the risk of exposing myself as a raging dope, I do not fully understand the rules behind the tag game. But I do appreciate a nice ride through the countryside. Great pictures. I loved the lines of the Gray County Courthouse.

    And that is a nice shot of you on your bike, not giving someone the finger.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  6. Dear Jack,

    No stupid questions only stupid peop...errr...I question goes dumb people, only dumb questions? No that doesn't seem right either...

    Ahhh!! There are not stupid questions, only stupid answers. I've got that one covered! :)

    The tag game can be confusing at first, but is easy to get the hang of. Take a look at the PA Tag Game. It initially started with one person posting a picture with their bike next to some interesting feature or other and clues to its location. The goal is for someone in the audience to determine the location, ride to it and take a picture of their bike in front of it. This could be termed "snagging". It is then your responsibility to be the first person to post the picture up to claim it as a win. If you are the first person to post it up, it is then your obligation to go take the pretty bike out, ride to some interesting location and take a picture of your bike with it. Post the picture to the forum with some moderate clues for people to find it. Then it is the challenge for one of the other inmates to ferret the location out and ride to take a picture of their bike at that location.

    Different tag games (per state or geographic region) have some minor rules in between these. They cover such things as, no archive photos, hours you have between snagging the one and posting the new location, if someone is allowed to bruce you, etc.

    Brucing is defined in many ways among many tags. It can be something as simple as someone thinking they have snagged the current location, ride home to post and find that someone has already posted a picture of their bike. Thereby brucing here would be that you thought you had it, but didn't. You could post your picture up for laughs to say that you thought you had it. Take a look at one of the lastest posts to the PA Tag where someone was thinking he would get it.

    Others take it to a new level. Say you post your picture of your bike with the current tag. But you haven't yet posted a picture of where you want to put it. In this bruce, someone could post a picture of their bike with the current tag and post a picture of a new tag, thereby nullifying your "snag".

    The rules of each tag are generally on the first page. If it is a state wide tag the tags must remain within the boundary of the state. State borders are completely legal, as long as the bike is in the proper state.

    Other tags are regional, like the Philly Tag O Rama that is all about Philly environs.

  7. ...was cutoff for being long-winded...

    And some even create public maps with little google pins in them showing the location of all tags to date, so noobs don't go placing tags at locations that have been previously used.

    Thanks for the photo compliments. I just feels naked without fingers, eyes-crossed or tongue being stuck out. Rare and elusive moment of photo capturing. :)


    Oh...and did that help clear up the game a little?