Monday, June 19, 2006

Cats-Cade 2006
Edited 6/29/06: I got a message last evening from Sassy (of the Skittles coment below) that the park you see here is now completely underwater. There is widespread flooding in this and the surrounding area. People have lost their homes and even their lives. Pray for them in this difficult time.
As promised, pictures and notes from our recent trip to New York.
We belong to an online group of folks who ride motorcycles, mostly Honda Gold Wings. There's a link in the sidebar to GL1800 Riders .com----->
Last year Bulldog and Meesh, a couple from Woodbourne, New York, decided to host a little get-together for people on their way to Americade in Lake George, NY. About sixty bikes with a little over 100 riders showed up for a weekend of camping, good food, and great fellowship in the Catskill Mountains. We didn't go but wished we had and we decided to make the trip this year.

We started out on Wednesday, May 31st, with new rain gear in the saddlebags and our little camper on the back. I had a pair of socks to work on and knitted away until it got too windy on the Ohio flatlands. We were having some trouble with our camper, which made us a little nervous. Rich had replaced the brakes just before we left home and they kept seizing up, so we had to periodically stop to bleed them before continuing.

It was hot, hot, hot on the Indiana Toll Road and Ohio Turnpike until we reached the Cleveland area. From there we had much cooler temps as we followed a line of rain squalls. Less than seven miles from our first night's destination we hit rain, but not enough to warrant putting on our rainsuits. We spent the night with our friend Peggy in the Youngstown, Ohio, area. Peg had made her world-class spaghetti sauce, and we had a wonderful supper with her family and friends.

Thursday morning we struck out again after breakfast with Peggy and family. We had a seven-hour day ahead so stayed on the interstates once more instead of riding the backroads we prefer. We hit rain east of Wilkes-Barre, PA, and that was pretty much the last time we were completely dry for several days.

We reached Woodbourne early Thursday evening, called for directions to the Firemen's Park,and bled the camper brakes again. Ranger Polecat directed us to our campsite. We set up our camper and after meeting some of our online friends headed for Liberty for some supper. We stopped in at the Liberty Days' Inn, where we found the non-camping contingent, then grabbed some burgers and headed back out to the park.

We had rain most of Friday. Joyce and I worked in the regstration booth, collecting camping and registration fees and handing out Cats-Cade hats, shirts, and name tags. It was fun to finally meet the people we've been talking to online and put names and faces together. In the evening we gathered at the fire station, where the campers met up with the motel-ers for a dinner ride.

There were at least this many more bikes in front of us. Ours is the yellow bike on the right in this photo. That's "Buster Crabbe" on the red bike in front and "Sassy" on our right. Sassy made the comment that we looked like "someone spilled a bag of Skittles!" The car you see a couple of bikes back nearly caused a tragedy. The driver pulled out directly in front of Buster then pulled off, came out again in front of us, pulled off, and pulled out one more time in front of another rider before getting out of the way! After that we had a lovely ride through some beautiful country.

Woodbourne was once known for its summer tourist trade. There were many camps where city folk could send their children or come as a family to escape the city heat and pollution. With the advent of cheaper airfare, people became more willing to travel greater distances and began heading to the Hamptons and similar areas. We saw several wonderful old camps now sadly falling into disrepair, many with their names painted in Hebrew on their gates. Someone told us that a large part of the movie "Dirty Dancing" was filmed in the Woodbourne area. I don't know if that's true, but it would have been a perfect setting for it!

Here we are at dinner with some of our friends: Rich is in the yellow shirt, then me, then "Dicepilot" "Robeth", Ross and Joyce, and a very nice fellow from Asheville, NC, whose name I can't remember. Robeth lives in the little town in North Carolina where Rich and I lived when we were newlyweds and he was in the Marine Corps, Dice is from Alabama, and Ross & Joyce are Hoosiers.

After a lovely supper we headed back to the campground, where we sat around the campfire talking and laughing until late in the evening.

I'll post more later but until then, here are some links to pictures from Cats-Cade '06:

Ross's pictures
Ronbien's pictures
Alpster's pictures
Hedo's pictures

Be sure to check out the Cats-Cade Web site, too.