Wizard's Wild Weekend

July 25th & 26th


Wizard (Kevin Healey) is a riding friend from southern Florida. Kevin rode in the 2007 Iron Butt Rally (IBR) and will ride in 2009 as well. Kevin was offering his friends a ride to varous points in Florida on this particular weekend. One of the stops was going to be Calico Jack's in Gainesville. Kevin's daughter is attending the University of Florida and she works at Calico Jack's. Therefore, I thought it would be a good destination for a weekend ride. And, since I am preparing for the IBR, I thought I would just pick out a few bonus locations from the 2007 IBR and grab those along the way as practice.

Betsy Young is a fellow Iron Butt rider and was needing to burn a few miles on this same weekend. We joined forces and made a hot pursuit to Florida. We left here on Friday at 5 pm and was back home by 10 pm Sunday night.

I have posted the pictures from the bonus points that we stopped at on the way to and from Florida. The IBR is all about achieving the most points within the allowed time limit and getting back to a designated point (usually a two hour window). Therefore it is helpful to practice riding while achieving points and honing your skill of following directions and knowing how long it takes to get a certain bonus point. I go into more details on the preparation for the Iron Butt here.


This is a copy of my Spot tracker as we made our route to Florida and back
Our first stop was Doe's cafe in Greenville, MS. The picture looks calm enough, but the neighborhood definitely "did not" feel the same (near midnight Friday night).
Sciples Mill is near DeKalb, MS. This picture can't do this location justice. After following a one-lane paved road for several miles, we approach a gravel road. I stopped at the entrance because the gps was telling me "that's" the direction to go. We are nestled in heavy trees on both sides of the road and it leads over a hill and disappears down to the left. The gravel is loose and freshly graded. I told Betsy to wait here patiently, but that wasn't for her. She said she was committed for the whole trip and to lead the way. We topped the hill and meandered down the twisted tree-canopied road to break out in a small opening about 1/4 mile from the pavement. It was silent with no one in sight. We pull up on the grass just past the small bridge and dismount. I didn't know if we were in the right place, but it felt weird enough to be. I couldn't imagine what traveling that road at night would have felt like.

The Sciples Mill converts water to energy to produce corn meal, but apparently it has cut some wood in the past. It wasn't open for us to view.
The information in regards to the history and useage of the Mill (click on the picture to enlarge it)
Betsy needed a picture by the Gator at the University of Florida, so this worked great for another practice check point. It was just as hard to find as well.
T-55 Tanker at the Battleship in Mobile, AL
This glassed in container holds the reminents of personal items collected after Katrina. The city also has had a project of sculpting tree trunks that were remaining as described here.
Memorial Plaque at the site
Bourbon Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans (It will be a while before this town recovers)
Getting a snapshot of the dome of the Superdome seemed simple enough. However, as you can tell, it's hard to distinquish the dome from the cloudy sky. Sometimes even the simplest challenge becomes difficult.