New Season

A friend reminded me that this blog was here so I thought I would come in and unpack a little.

My daughter and new son-in-law are about to mark their first anniversary. They went camping in Cherokee, North Carolina so I thought as the dad/father-in-law I could give them no better gift than surprising them and moving in beside them.

Okay, it was a few spots away, it wasn’t a surprise, and they actually wanted me to come hang out with them a bit, or at least made me feel like they did. I loved it. Saw my first wild elk. I’ve been up and down the Smokies but have never bumped into one of these guys until this trip.

I truly love my new son-in-law. He’s a fantastic addition to the family and the way he and my daughter are entering into this marriage helps me sleep well, even when I’m sleeping in the trees.

Comfy into the 40’s, and it all fits on the bike!

And I’m starting to hone my moto-camping gear to fit my very specific needs and desires. It’s not easy when you want enough gear to keep you comfy, want to sleep in the woods, but still don’t want the bike to get too far away and off the pavement. I’m hoping to make a longer trip this summer to upstate New York, but I’ll save those details for another post.

For now, it’s enough to put this post up and start a great new season. I hope your season of life is full of peaceful rest and just enough wildness to keep it fun.

Camping with Betty-Sioux

Many of my friends know that I like to camp. But when I camp, I usually pack my backpack as light as I can, walk a few miles into the mountains, set up my hammock, start my jet boil, hang up my bear bag, and enjoy life. But I’ve decided to try a different style of camping, and that will mean a different approach.

This is Betty-Sioux. She is a 2015 Indian Chief Vintage. My wife semi-affectionately refers to her as my “mistress.” That color is a throwback to a 1957 Ford Thunderbird. The sheepskin seat is from Alaska and only needs to be fed once each week.

So, I have almost the same problem when I take my wife camping as when I take my “mistress.” Sweetie-Pie doesn’t like to stay in hotels under 4 stars. Betty-Sioux doesn’t like to dip her tires off the pavement. Fortunately, my motorcycle doesn’t get to vote. Sweetie-pie on the other hand has been exercising her veto power over accompanying me on camping trips for a long time. Although she does sometimes pick me up after I’ve been a few days in the woods. I am very grateful that she drives hours sometimes to haul me back to civilization, and I don’t even complain that she makes me keep the windows down all the way back home.

After a bit of research I found a campground just off the Blue Ridge Parkway that is oddly enough called the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground. They offered everything I was looking for in a camping spot, and I was very pleased that the trail around the campground was a tightly packed gravel and dirt path. Not bad at all.

View of the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground’s cabin area

So I spent one night sleeping warm and snug and letting the creek serve as my lullaby. The chill in the mountain air in the morning still let me know that this was truly camping. And as I piloted my bike up the hill and onto the Blue Ridge Parkway that morning I decided that I need to do this again. Soon.

Nice campsite