Posts Tagged: travel

Favorite Central PA Motorcycle Ride

I enjoyed an amazing motorcycle ride today. It all started when I was reminiscing on a vista I had discovered when I was about 17 years old and hadn’t seen it since. I live in Harrisburg but really needed to start the trip from Newville, PA. I could have taken Route 641 from Mechanicsburg. But that road from Mechanicsburg to Newville is dreadfully slow. So I decided to simply take I81 south from Harrisburg to Route 233 into Newville.

From Newville I followed Route 641 south-west through Newburg and Roxbury. Once past Roxbury, 641 winds through the mountains with spectacular views! Finally I come to the intersection of 75 and 641. Going straight through this intersection take you to the top of another mountain. This is where I park and take a short hike up to a radio tower. The undergrowth was too thick to enjoy the view. But in the Fall you would have a beautiful view of Franklin County.

Path Valley Vista III

Path Valley Vista II

Path Valley Vista

Continuing over the mountain to the north brings you to Route 35 in Shade Gap. Make a right and follow this north until you reach Route 850 which is on your right. Make a right onto 850 for a nice twisty ride into Perry County. Pass through Honey Grove and cross Route 75. You will pass along the edge of the Tuscarora State Forest and come to an intersection at Route 17.

Rural Bridge

Make a left onto Route 17 and follow through Ickesburg until you get to Millerstown. Make a right at the square in Millerstown onto South Market Street. From here you can follow South Market Street along the river to Newport where you can pick up 322 east. Or you can take 322 east to Harrisburg right outside of Millerstown.

These rural roads offer beautiful scenery and avoid big towns. The small towns you go through really showcase rural life here in Pennsylvania. The trip was roughly 160 miles in length and will take you through Duaphin, Cumberland, Franklin, Huntingdon, Juniata, and Perry counties. If anyone would be interested in going on this ride and want company, I’d be happy to go along.

Great Salt Lake from Above

Having recently flew into and out of Salt Lake City, Utah, I thought I would share this beautiful landscape. About 10 years ago I had the opportunity to drive across the country and found Utah one of the most beautiful states to drive through. The scenery is such a contrast from what we have on the east coast of the United States.

The Great Salt Lake is the largest salt lake in the northern hemisphere. This lake is very unique as it has no outlet besides evaporation. The lake is fed by the Jordan, Weber, and Bear rivers which deposit minerals into the lake making it far saltier than sea water.

For more info on the Great salt Lake, check out the Wikipedia article. Now enjoy the photos.











2011 BMW Finger Lakes Rally

This weekend was the 37th annual BMW Finger Lakes Rally at the Hidden Valley campground in Watkins Glen, New York. The weather was calling for showers and thunderstorms all weekend. But I decided it was worth going.

Last year’s Finger Lakes Rally was the first rally I attended. This year I would be travelling two-up with Erica riding pillion. We packed our gear into the two system cases, tank bag, and a U-Pac. Photos of this setup can be found on this previous post.

Breakfast done, time to hit the road.

Friday morning we met up with my friend Jon and his friend Doug and Chris at the Summerdale Diner for breakfast. After breakfast we hit the road and headed north on route 15 towards the New York border. We arrived at the Hidden Valley Campground in Watkins Glen, NY in the early afternoon in time to find a good camping spot and set up the tent.

After setting up camp and unloading the bike, we headed to the Village Marina Bar and Grill for dinner. I chose the fish and chips and we ate our dinner overlooking Seneca Lake which was quite beautiful as the sun was setting. After dinner we retreated back to camp with a bottle of local wine to enjoy while hanging out with friends.

Beer battered fish fry

Sunset on Seneca Lake

Saturday morning we woke up to more warm and humid weather. My friend RJ asked if we were coming with him. He mentioned something about the world’s largest pancake griddle, the letters “USA” mowed into a field, and a trip to Monica’s Pies. We decided to join him and some others and head off to see what RJ had planned.



The group stopped to have breakfast at Angel’s Family Restaurant in Penn Yan, NY.


While waiting for the group to have breakfast (we had breakfast back at camp), we enjoyed socializing the local vendors who were selling goods on the sidewalks of Penn Yan.


After breakfast we headed to the next block to see the world’s largest pancake griddle hanging on the side of a building. Note Erica standing at the bottom for scale of this thing.


Following the pancake griddle photo opp, we rounded the corner to check out the Penn Yan Diner. The diner was closed but it was interesting to see how low the ceiling was on this diner. It looked like it was designed for fun-size people!

Penn Yan Diner II

We left Penn Yan and headed out in search for the letters “USA” which were supposedly mowed into a field nearby. A few miles out of town we found it.


Finally, we headed to Naples, NY to visit Monica’s Pies for a blueberry pie. I had made a trip to Monica’s last year with Elsie and a few others. Now I think it has become a tradition. I bought a blueberry pie which was brought out by Monica herself. We grabbed some forks and headed outside to enjoy the pie before heading home. RJ bought an apple pie which we enjoyed for dessert after dinner Saturday night.


A thunderstorm blew through Saturday evening drenching everything. Luckily we were already at camp. By morning all seemed fine but at breakfast Sunday morning people were discussing the weather in the area. It looked like some storms were heading in from the north and west. We were originally going to stay until Monday. But with the forecast I had decided it was probably best if we headed out Sunday morning for the best possibility of making it home and avoiding the rain.

We packed up the tent and gear and started loading up the bike. We were being slowed down by some fellow rally participants who wanted to chat about the R1100S and our gear. This may have been a blessing in disguise. Heading out on our way south we travelled through Horsehead, NY, then to Towanda, PA. Many times the sky looked like it would open up and rain at any moment. Some of the roads were wet from a recent rain. Pushing forward we wound our way to Williamsport, then Sunbury where we stopped for fuel and a late lunch. The sky to the west looked almost black and it is my guess that the storm had recently passed through the area and was heading east. We made it back to Harrisburg, PA safely and without a drop of rain which in my mind was a successful trip.