Colorado Cruise 2003 – Day 7: Iron Butt Practice

(click to enlarge map)

Friday

  • Ogden, UT to Seattle, WA (Scott)
  • 850 miles

I have no intention or need to ride all the way to Seattle today but the thought of seeing how far I can get comfortably and safely is intriguing. Joe and I are fans of the Iron Butt crowd, people who enjoy riding 1,000 miles a day for fun and call themselves the “World’s Toughest Motorcycle Riders”. I’m in no position to disagree. I’ve been following their guidelines for distance riding for years and they do know their stuff. (See Archive of Wisdom.)

I’m rested, my mind is clear, the weather is clear and warm, the tires are properly inflated, there is nothing but Interstate ahead and I’m riding a Gold Wing with cruise control and a six CD changer filled with rock and roll in the trunk. The conditions are optimal. I leave Odgen at 7 AM.

Hour after hour, I cruise. Deep Purple, B-52s, Lord Of The Rings soundtracks, and then NPR on the FM radio as I pass through urban areas. I cross Idaho and then Oregon and by the time I reach Yakima, Washington, night has fallen. It’s Friday night and people are out enjoying the Summer evening. I’m 180 miles from Seattle and I check in with Inga. My butt’s tender but the Wing and I are in the groove. We’re going to press on. We ascend the Cascades on I-90 and we sail over 3,000 ft. Snoqualmie Pass in the dark. The heated grips and vest are on to push back the chill in the air and Steely Dan is playing on the stereo. I’m filled with elation. It’s been an amazing seven days and I’ve achieved what the doctor ordered. I roll into my driveway at 10:30 PM.

So could I have ridden 1,000 miles in 24 hours to earn a “Saddle Sore” award from the Iron Butt Association if I had more miles to go? I think so. Stopping for a salad for dinner and a bit of a rest would probably have tuned me up enough to polish off the last 150 miles. But not today. I’m home, my own bed calls, and I’m satisfied with my accomplishment. The Saddle Sore will have to wait for another ride. — Scott Bruce Duncan */:-)

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