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October 20th Edition

In This Issue:


Riding BE-cause ~ Charitable & Educational Events in the Carolinas

Lil' Weather

Free Thinking with FancyFree

EVENT REPORT: The Tomorrow Organization Ride

Your Myrtle Beach Discount Card

Orangeburg Ron: Riding to Myrtle Beach after the Floods

Ride Safe: Class List & some Safety Questions for us all

Toy Runs?

Loose Talk with Jon

CLICK BELOW to buy your money-saving "Carolina Rider" discount card for Myrtle Beach businesses!

CLICK ABOVE to buy your money-saving "Carolina Rider" discount card for Myrtle Beach businesses!


The Carolina Rider is happy to help promote this worthy effort. Please help! ...

The Little Weather Quickie for the Greater Charlotte Area

for Week of October 20-27, 2015

Wednesday 74h & clear, Thursday 77h & clear, Friday 79h & clear, Saturday 71h & p-cloudy, Sunday 73h & overcast, Monday 71h & m-cloudy, Tuesday 57h & 60% rain (as per on 10/20/15)

If you wanted to, you could stay pretty darn busy supporting the various charitable motorcycle events from the northernest northern parts of North Carolina to the southernest southern parts of South Carolina. There's usually more than one event just about every weekend during our warmer months and then the toy runs take over Nov and Dec.

The Carolina Rider enjoys supporting charitable and educational not-for-profit motorcycle events. If you still aren't aware of how we do that, take a moment and look at this info. We're tickled whenever someone asks for our marketing support. That's why we're here!

From poker runs to bike shows, awareness events to club endeavors, we appreciate giving our help to Organizers' efforts to help out Carolina communities and individuals. Everyone wants these things to be successful with hundreds or thousands of riders participating.

Often; however, despite organizers' best efforts, weather determines the turn-out. Such was the case for The Tomorrow Organization's ride at the end of September. While The BIG RIDE 2 Bus's own scheduled appearance at Bikefest in Raleigh was cancelled due to 100% rain for 2 days straight, TCR team members were still on schedule to set up our tent at the ride in Rock Hill. It was a drizzly day for this first-time event but a strong handful of riders did show for the first LBM Memorial Ride and TCR's Paul and Caroline were proud to be there in support of the organization's support of our world's teens. Thanks to all who showed up!

This Saturday the Charlotte HOG group has a poker run going on leaving from Harley-Davidson of Charlotte. Check it out and join it or another charitable happening near you.

If you're involved in a not-for-profit charitable or educational motorcycle event, please don't forget to get in touch with The Carolina Rider. We're here for you!

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A couple weeks ago, during the flooding, I had a meeting in Myrtle Beach.  There was talk of cancelling, however, it was decided to proceed...

Now how to get there from Cope, SC with all the road closures?

First, Highways 301/601 were closed going into Orangeburg where it crosses the Edisto River near the Rose Gardens, which was underwater. So we had to detour around on a small back road called Shillings Bridge. This is a good road, and we often take it into town, however now that all of the traffic coming from the west had to use it, it was very backed up. Our normal 20-minute trip would be an hour to an hour and a half.

We usually go up to Manning on I-95 and over to Turbeville and 378 through Lake City to Conway and take 501 into Myrtle Beach. I-95 was closed from I-26 to Florence, so no crossing the river and lake that way. Some of my staff went up to Columbia and took I-20 to Florence and over; which had only a couple of detours, but is a long way around and about 4-5 hours. Since we couldn’t cross the river on 95 we also couldn’t go to Andrews and over to Georgetown and up through Pawley’s Island and many of those roads were closed also. I’ve also taken 17A through Monck’s Corner, but that had a number of closures as well.

Google said the quickest way would be to go down to Mt. Pleasant and up 17, so we tried that. We went down I-26 to 526 and got 17 in Mt. Pleasant. This road, especially around Mt. Pleasant, is known as the sweat grass basket highway, as there are numerous people with little roadside shacks selling baskets. On a Wednesday there weren’t many open.

The main problem with this route is the bridges. I’m not a fan of big bridges, but in the one picture you may be able to barely make out the Ravanel Bridge out of Charleston. This is one of the largest suspension bridges; but maybe more amazing is that it was finished under budget and in less time than planned with no major injuries.

We saw very little flood issues on this route, we did pass one lake that had a dam that gave way and was drained. It was a great day for a ride, about 70 degrees with sunshine. The road was fairly good, at least going. But we learned coming back that the "other" side wasn’t so smooth. We had great weather all week and some spectacular sunrises.

We left for home on Friday around noon and the weather was a little warmer, but since we didn’t have room to pack the leather, we wore it, and was glad since it was a cool ride home. We stopped in McClellansville for gas and asked about lunch. We were told by one of the local guys with his lawn mower in the back that "Buckshots" right down the road was the best place. We have seldom been directed wrong by local people and eating places so we tried it. It was a very nice lunch buffet with the typical chicken, whitefish, BBQ, sweet corn, yams, rice and other stuff and some really good banana pudding. As the very nice waitress was bringing us a picture of water to fill our glasses unfortunately she slipped in some of the water she spilled and went down hard, water and ice everywhere and a very sore hip. I was able to help her up and to a chair, but she went right back to work. Marcia left a little larger tip since she worked so hard.

It was a great day for a ride and the weather was great. The only hitch we had was that the road became so rough and since we had just eaten at a nice buffet – and yes, eating more than we needed - it didn’t set well. We ended up stopping at the exit just up from Harleyville (Yes there is a little town called Harleyville. And since the town signs were stolen so often, you can buy them from the town hall for $10.00)

We went on into St. George and up through Branchville and Bamberg to 601/301 to Cope since we didn’t know if the road through Orangeburg was open.

And yes, as usual when we go, a great day, a good ride – especially on the new Road Glide (Marcia really did appreciate the better ride and comfort over the Wide Glide, and we knew we were going to make it there and back without breaking down along the highway.) Great company as always.

Just Ride!!

QUICK LINKS to the above:

Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF)

Harley-Davidson’s Riding Academy

NC Motorcycle Safety

SC Rider Education

Harley-Davidson of Charlotte in Matthews

Cox’s Harley-Davidson in Rock Hill, SC

Central Piedmont Community College in the Greater Charlotte Area

A Safety Question from Orangeburg Ron:

What to do about SUN in your Eyes?

I remembered an incident this morning on the way in that happened in Michigan. On our way over to the fair early Wed. morning the sun was right in our eyes.  When I say right in our eyes, I could not get any relief and could not see.  If I put my hand up, it blocked my view of the road.  If I lowered my head to try to get some shadow from my helmet I also could barely see the road and had a very short vision.  As we were going and struggling at one point Marcia said I think I see a car coming.  I put my hand up and got a brief view ahead and in wasn’t a car, but a tractor moving along a tractor speed, much slower than my 45-50 which was as fast as I was willing to go since I couldn’t see.  We had about 20 feet or so before running into the back of the tractor, and fortunately there was not a car coming and I could pass him quickly instead of testing the new ABS system on the Road Glide.  But it was a close call.

Which is Safer: Highways or Back Roads?

Now the question Highways or back roads?  I have friends that say they won’t ride on the highway –interstate- because it is too dangerous and too fast.  Then I have friends that say the back roads present much more danger between tractors, slow moving other vehicles, people turning in front of you or pulling out of side streets or driveways.  I think the deer/animal danger is there on both situations - there are deer on the side of the interstate as well as running out on backroads.

Oct is great riding weather!

It's that time of the year when riding is great. The weather is cool and the air feels light and crisp. It's also the time to take stock of your riding skills. They constantly need to be honed. A great way to do that is with a riding course. MSF has put years of research in how to ride more safely and the New Rider Course (NRC) is a great way to help. Even if you have been riding for years the NRC will help you remember things that you might have forgotten over the years or that you are not thinking about currently.

Watch THIS VIDEO. It's a stark reminder that you have to be alert at all times. Clearly the car driver was at fault but if the rider had just given a small/short blast of the horn, the accident might have been avoided.

Invest in Your Life

In today's Weekly Magazine, we've provided you with links to several training programs. Why not invest in your life and brush up on your safety. And, if you want to see a class in action, I will be at Harley-Davidson of Charlotte this weekend teaching a class, helping riders be safe. Why not stop by and say hello?

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