May 26 through 30, Kate and I rode out to the Moto Guzzi Owners Club National Rally in New Cumberland, West Virginia. Thursday night, we rode from Jackson, NJ to Kate's house in Philadelphia. Friday, we did a 420 mile day, from Philadelphia to Weirton, WV.

We took the PA Turnpike from Philly to Route 81, and then rode south from there to Route 30, a.k.a. the Lincoln Highway. We stopped there for lunch at the Roadsters Diner in Chambersburg, PA. Then we took the fun part of Rt 30 west over the Appalachians to a few miles past Bedford, PA.

Bedford, PA deserves special mention -- it has a number of interesting sites: Dunkel's Gulf Station, the Coffee Pot restaurant, which was recently preserved, and the Pied Piper. Tragically, the Ship Hotel burned down since our last visit.

From Bedford, we took the PA Turnpike, I-70, PA 18, and US 22 to Weirton, WV, arriving around 6PM, just in time for the evening rain.

Saturday morning, we got up and rode up to the rally site in New Cumberland, WV, arriving just in time for the parade, in which all the rally attendees ride their bikes the length of the town (with fire engine escort) while the towns people line the main street and cheer and wave. This has been a tradition for many of the 27 years that this rally has been held.

After the parade, all the attendees lined up for the group shot, which involves a professional photographer who has a motorized camera that he uses to shoot a 180 degree panorama on a continuous piece of film.

I hung around the rally site the rest of the day. Mark Etheridge of Moto Guzzi Classics of Long Beach, CA had been flown out by some of his appreciative customers, and he was wandering about the rally site, tuning carburators in return for beers. Saturday night was the big dinner prepared by the fire department (on whose land the rally is held), and then after the awards, Kate and I adjourned to our hotel in Weirton. (Long distance female rider was Alice Sexton, who rode from California.)

We Left Sunday morning, and rode east on US 22 to I-79, north on that, and then east on I-80 to PA 8, then northeast on that and then PA 62 to US 6. This part of PA is near Titusville and Oil City, and is the home of the original oil wells drilled since the first one in Titusville in 1859. On Route 62, we came across the Simpler Times Museum. A summary from the web:

  Local interest museum featuring oil and gas production equipment. 82 gasoline pumps, hundreds of signs and globes. 100 tractors and farm equipment and engines. Antique cars and turn of the century exhibits. Six miles north of Tidioute, PA on U.S. Route 62. 814-484-3483  

We didn't have time to really do the place justice, we just tore through it in 45 minutes or so and then hit the road again. Miles to go before we slept and all that. We stopped for a late lunch at what I think was the Fireman's Dining Room between Roulette and Coudersport, PA. There we were offered two 1970 vintage BMW's, owned by a widowed friend of the proprietor, who lived nearby. Probably nice bikes, but quite over priced at $7000 each.

We stayed Sunday night with our friends Jack and Debbie in Ulster, PA.

Monday, we rode back from Ulster PA via US 6, I-81, I-380, PA 33, PA 611, PA 32, NJ 29, I-195. Total mileage was 1050. Both the 33 year old Moto Guzzi Ambassador and the 15 year old Honda CBR600F ran fine the whole way.

Kate and Bill at the Roadster Diner
rainbow in Weirton
Red and White Ambassador
People's choice winning blue Eldorado
Purple Eldorado
Cam of Manahawkin, NJ and his Eldorado
Amazing custom Guzzi chopper
Ambassador with Eagle paint job
Jack Arnold and his (50's ?) Galletto model
Lannis on his Eldorado
Mark of Moto Guzzi Classics testing an Eldorado
Photographing the group shot
Kate lounging by the Ohio River, Ohio in the background
Bill in front of Simpler Times Museum
bikes in front of Simpler Times Museum
tool display at Simpler Times Museum
stationary engine at Simpler Times Museum
old tractor at Simpler Times Museum
another old tractor at Simpler Times Museum

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