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Another report on a trip up to Kinzua Dam in Northwest Pennsylvania. Some of the Lake Erie Tri-State group went up there about 2 weeks ago. I was intrigued with this trip, so had some days off and got some work friends together and took a ride up.

1997 Valk (mine), 2005 Suzuki Boulevard C50, 2006 VLX

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/10Motors.jpg

275 miles total on a PERFECT day... 80 and sunny!

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/11Map.jpg

The route took us out of Mercer Pennsylvania up US Route 62. This is a great motorcycle road that takes you between the Allegheny River and the Allegheny National Forest. The road is lightly traveled (during the week) and has many sweeping curves (40-60mph) and ups and downs.

There are some really interesting sights along the way...

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/01Polk.jpg

This is the Polk Center, a state home for mentally challenged. The center opened in 1897 and if I would have made the picture "Sepia" you would think the picture was from that time! Feels like you are stepping back in time.

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/02Country.jpg

Great farms and small towns the whole way up.

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/03Franklin.jpg

That is downtown Franklin, PA. What was most interesting is that the downtown is so clean and bustling with people and business. This area of Pennsylvania and Ohio is economically depressed and it was encouraging to see a town doing it right! Not one vacant store front!

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/04Venango.jpg

The Venango County Courthouse in Franklin... another step out of the past!

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/05OilCity.jpg

Oil City is another small river town...

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/06US62.jpg

This is one of the more unique bridges across the Allegheny. We crossed the river probably 6-10 times through the course of the ride.

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/07Kinzua.jpg

The mighty Kinzua Dam! It is no Hoover, but pretty impressive all the same.

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/08Downstream.jpg

Downriver from the dam.

http://home.neo.rr.com/pgibb/kinzua/09Lake.jpg

The resivo... resiuo... resivuo... LAKE behind the dam. It extends up into New York State.

The return trip, I never return the way I came, was nice, Routes 66, 666, 6, 322, and 208. Again, long sweepers and elevation changes, traffic a bit heaver, many small (read micro) towns along the way.

Some things I learned (should probably post this part Friday):

1: The Mustang Seat is great except for the seams that chafe. Ordered a Alaska Leather sheepskin pad tonight for both me and my wife.
2: Most Pennsylvania drivers (contrary to popular Ohioan opinion) are aware of motorcycles and give you a wide berth. Never had one "oh s***" moment.
3: Valk got a tad under 30 mpg... but I don't care... I didn't buy it for its "reputation" for sipping gas and don't drive it as such.
4: I prefer long rides to short ones (my friends don't though)
 

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What a beautiful ride you took. I like the way you posted the map too for any of us that way who might want to follow the same route. Thanks!
 

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Yea that does sound like a great ride and the pics are nice. I'm only around 30 miles from the dam and am through there frequently during the riding season.(pic of NYS side of the res. in my sig pic) There is 90 some miles of shoreline and the few roads that follow it that are pretty cool also. You just reminded me I need to make the trek down around Franklin/Oil City area later this summer(haven't been there in a long time). Great idea showing your route on the map!
Most Pennsylvania drivers (contrary to popular Ohioan opinion) are aware of motorcycles and give you a wide berth.
Don't worry, PA has more than it's share, believe me!
 

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Well it's about damn time you got that bike out and cleaned the cobwebs out of her !

Looked like a great ride. Get that saddle time up there. If we are going to be doing the IronButt, we will both need to get the our stamina up.

Let me know how the sheepskin cover works. I got a corbin touring seat for my Valk and love it. But if the sheepskin helps keep things cool, I might be interested.

Look out for a package in the mail bro...

Nick
 

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Man, that sure brings back some fond memories! I grew up in Greenville, PA and I spent a lot of time riding those very same roads. Great pics and thanks for the memories!

Happy Trails!
sanoke
 

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sanoke said:
Man, that sure brings back some fond memories! I grew up in Greenville, PA and I spent a lot of time riding those very same roads. Great pics and thanks for the memories!

Happy Trails!
sanoke
I work out of Greenville, i don't know what year you left,but many changes have been made. The Entire state is a riders dream.
 
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