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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Completed an iron butt yesterday. Will have a write up coming eventually.

Broke my go pro mount halfway though the ride, so I don't have many pics other than a handful while stopped.

Old school navigation is the best navigation. Keeps things exciting when you have to actually pay attention to signs.


I don't take many selfies, but when I do I go big.

Basking in the sun after an hour of rain

The day's work is done.
 

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How many hours did it take to make that trip?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Left at 2am, back at 830pm, so about 18 1/2 hours. Saddle time was likely in the neighborhood of 15 hrs. Gas stops, food breaks, etc were good for about 3. It was almost entirely interstates so a very high avg speed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Unofficial SaddleSore 1000 Totals:
1074 miles
18:25 overall time
15:24 moving time
The story:
I was trying to figure out something to do for the 4th of July weekend , but just couldn’t get any solid plans being that I still had to work either Sunday or Monday, and my wife wasn’t too enthused with some of the options I threw out. I’m not sure why, but I thought to myself, hey I’ll do an iron butt. I had two routes “planned” which were 550 miles a single highway and uturning, and running down to nags head NC to see a light house. I threw both of those away because 550 straight miles was just too boring, and heading to the beach on 4th of July might [would] be a disaster.
In comes plan C. Something else in my head clicked and I remembered I wanted to see Niagara Falls. Popped it into google, and what did you know, 430 miles away. Perfect. I built a loop using that as the center piece and the plans were set. I then found the necessary requirements on the IBA website and picked out gas stations to verify the route. The plan was to start around 330am to maximize my time in the daylight at the end of the ride. I am NOT a night person, so pounding out hundreds of highway miles at night were not something I wanted to do.
The day of:
My alarm was set for 230am, but I was half awake by 1230, and out of bed by 130am. I have a tendency of waking up ahead of time when I have these real early alarms set. Oh well, guess it’s an even earlier start.
I got geared up, triple checked that my logbook and sharpie were in the saddlebags, and rode to the first stop a few miles from home. Once there I grabbed bagel for breakfast, checked my stuff again, took a picture of my odometer for my initial reading, and filled up for the first time of the day officially starting the clock. I needed to be back by 2:04 am tomorrow, with 1000+ miles completed.
The route started on familiar roads, and I made great time seeing just one cop in his usual spot. Nothing eventful happened until I was at the 4th stop in Syracuse. I pulled up at 5:50 and the station opens at 6. No big deal, I’d been riding for almost 4 hrs straight now, a 10 minute stretch break would be nice. 6 rolls around, nothing. 6:05, 6:10. Still nothing. Now I’m just wasting away time so I hop back on the bike and take off up the street to find another station. I eventually find one and fill up. Got a little lost trying to find the highway since I’m just winging it at this point, but I eventually got there and only backtracked a tiny bit. (Old school navigation doesn’t work too well when off the path….)
After jumping back on the highway, it’s a seemingly never end straight stretch on I90 (even by interstate standards) I run into 290,190 and eventually I am at the falls. It’s my first time ever there, and it was kind of underwhelming. And super touristy, which I hate. I’ll take a mountain in the Adirondacks over the falls any day of the week. Wound up spending about an hour there, which was more than enough for me and I was ready to get moving again. Right as I’m setting out the rain starts. Rode in the rain from the falls, through buffalo , past erie, and eventually into Ohio. Pretty easy riding despite the rain and being so near the city. I made one mistake when I followed a sign for 90 that took me in the wrong direction and had to double back a bit. Cost me 15 miles or so and some time, nothing too bad but it was frustrating.
From there it was a short run down a 2 lane road to connect with I80 which took me back to NJ. It was so much nicer than being on the interstate (the sun had also come out which certainly didn’t hurt!) and I will try to make a point to avoid interstates if I do another saddlesore ride. Got gas to verify this corner of the route and hopped on 80 for the home stretch. I knew that getting to 80 was the key to finishing the ride in a day so I was pretty relieved to be there by early afternoon.
The next stop was a dinner break at an arbys in the truck stop, where I noticed the weather report for “severe thunderstorms and tornados” on the TV. Well crap. I saw them in the forecast yesterday but hoped they wouldn’t occur. Luckily the tornado warnings were well out of my way, but the thunderstorms weren’t. I had finally just dried out from the last rain and it was time to get wet again….
I was just 250 miles or so from home so I was time to just suck it up and get it done. I rolled up my jeans a bit to help keep them dry under my rain pants and set off. Figured I’ll just stop and toss my windbreaker on over my jacket when I got to the rain. This turned out to be a fairly poor idea (I should’ve known better). It went from cloudy, to drizzle, to steady pour in about ¼ mile. Had to pull over on the shoulder of the highway and throw on that jacket. Once I got it on I set back out and the rain just continued to get worse to the point that it was ridiculous. Traffic was crawling, the road was flooded, my visor was fogged, my glasses were fogged and I couldn’t see ****. I pulled off at the first exit I could (which took way too long to get to) and hid in a gas station for a few minutes to check the radar on my phone. Pretty sure this is the first time I’ve ever pulled off a road for rain on the bike. Luckily that little burst was gone in just a few minutes and I set back out into a far more reasonable amount of rain.
By the time I reached the NJ border it was clear but the sky did not look promising. I was lucky enough to hook up with another car determined to stay ahead of the storm and we hauled it down the highway. 14 hours of riding on that bike and the little 300 that could was still just humming along. Got my second to last tank of gas to verify a corner, and set off to do 40 miles down the parkway to get home.
I commute this road every day so I thought it was all over, but that was not quite so (is it ever easy at the end of a ride?). I’m 20 miles from home and traffic is at a dead stop. All four lanes, for as far as I can see. Uuugghhhhhhh. I just want to be home at this point. I split traffic for a few miles before I came to a car on fire blocking 3 of the lanes. Fair enough, at least traffic isn’t stopped for something stupid. Once I cleared that final obstacle it was a 15 minute ride back to the starting gas station to get my final receipt and stop the clock at 8:25pm. A little shy of 1100 miles 18 and half hours. Not a bad day of riding.
Once I got home I showered and was asleep within about an hour. Slept for a solid 12 hours which was amazing. I’m still in the process of filling out all the paperwork and route info for the certification, but I have everything well documented and should be done by tomorrow. Then it’s just a waiting game to see if they can verify the distances and give me the certificate.
Here’s a breakdown of the ride and stops for anyone interested.
 
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