Sailboat Trailer Restoration [Before]

We picked up the trailer on 9-24-2006 and began working on the restoration. The seller drew us a comical map of where it was located and we are confident that we picked up the correct one. The trailer wasn’t too bad off. Like the boat, it just needed some cleaning, sanding, and repainting. We decided on a deep red paint color. Eventually we will have to replace the tires in order to haul the boat any significant distance. Here are the before photos.

The trailer was still in solid condition with little rust, just needed a little work to get it in a respectable fashion to move a sailboat.

Purchase of a Slightly Used 1972 Catalina 22 at $1,000 for Restoration

We purchased our Catalina 22 from a gentleman in Auburn, AL. Prior to the purchase we went out to Lake Martin to look it over a couple of times and take some photographs. Here is what she looks like in her slip today, 9-15-2006.  The plan is to haul her out and bring her home around the 12th of November 2006 and begin work on her restoration. You can see from the photos that she has been sitting here quite a while. From all we can tell she has been sitting on the lake here for the better part of 5 years. At least it was fresh water. There is a lot of work to be done.

First stop in November is going to be a car wash if we can ever get it up on a trailer. It is a good hull, and one that many Catalina owners love to use for racing, so it should clean up real well. We will see I guess.

Catalina 22 Racing Sailboat For Sale at Lake Martin

We had been thinking about a purchase of a Catalina 22 from a gentleman in Auburn, AL. Prior to the purchase we went out to Lake Martin to look it over a couple of times and take some photographs. Here is what she looks like in her slip today, 9-15-2006. It hadn’t been moved from the slip in some time and needed some TLC but we knew it would clean up nice, after all, it was still floating, and from all we gather, it hadn’t moved in about 4-5 years at the time of our purchase.

It is a 1979 Catalina 22 [hull number to follow], purchase price was $1,000, which included the trailer.  The plan is to haul her out and bring her home around the 12th of November 2006 and begin work on her restoration. There is a lot of work to be done but it will be fun to work on her. See next post for full photo shoot.

Motorcycle Riding in Hot Springs Arkansas is FUN

What did you do to celebrate American Labor Day, September 4-6, 2006? This year we trailered the bikes to Hot Springs, Arkansas. Apparently, Hot Springs is a Mecca of sorts for motorcyclists. It is one of the more beautiful places to ride and there are several long, winding roads in the area that we had read about. These roads were supposed to be fantastic for motorcycling. They were touted as having some beautiful curves and vistas (See below). We were not disappointed.

We did a little geocaching on the way there and back, as well as during our motorcycle rides. We dropped off several travel bugs and picked up a few more to bring back to Alabama. One thing we enjoy about geocaching is that it takes us to places we never would have ventured into. We crossed the bridge in the below photo on our bikes several times, but it wasn’t until we went to find the cache down below by the river that we were treated to this view.

Headed for a cache just off the Natchez Trace Parkway in Mississippi

Found it!

One of the bridges we crossed on one of our bike excursions.

Found this one in Memphis, TN on what appeared to be an abandoned golf course.

While we were out caching on our bikes I came across this little guy and decided to go back and save him from squashing. Doesn’t it look like I am giving him a lecture about the benefits of staying out of the road? Even though he wouldn’t come out of his shell, I think he listened to me and will stay in the woods from now on.

The rides we took each day were tons of fun, with lots of winding curves, switchbacks, and mountain vistas. Once I got up next to the sign I couldn’t believe how big it really was. These signs were one after another up and down the mountains. What a blast!

There he goes….

Here he comes…

There he goes again…

As I said this place is no secret to motorcyclists so the roads were filled with them every where we went. We had loads of opportunities to see all kinds of different bikes (and riders). Everything from trike riders with female drivers and male passengers to a man with his dog, front paws perched on the handlebars balancing nicely. We really didn’t know that there would be so many bikes there. It really was a treat.

Two of the many riders we met along the way.

OOOOOOHHHHH Pretty!!!!

We stopped by Wal-Mart and bought a disposable camera for our rides after we realized that it might be fun to take pictures of each other and anything else while riding. Be sure to check out the last photo in this set. That is Scott in the back of that 1/4 mile long group of motorcycles roaring down the road. I was actually the last rider in the line and it was so much more fun to ride in a pack than I thought it would be. Some of the photos are a little blurry, but hey, try taking photos with one hand and cranking the throttle and steering with the other. YES, mother, we were being careful…

Everyone has to eat and of course we found some of the coolest local places to go. Dwayne’s Bar-B-Q and Grill is located in Dover and their parking lot was full of bikes when we passed by. Since Dover was at the end of our route for the day, about a half an hour later on our way back we decided to check it out. We have learned to never underestimate the ability of bikers to find great food at fantastic prices. The food was abundant and excellent and we got out of there for under $20.

Our hotel was located on Lake Hamilton and there were a couple of resturants on the lake to choose from. Fisherman’s Wharf was located one bridge over from our hotel and we decided to eat there, overlooking the water and the city’s fireworks display on Labor Day evening. There was so much boat traffic going across the lake for the fireworks it was great fun to watch them all. Dinner was so good and the people/boat/firework watching was so much fun that we ended up staying long enough to watch the boat traffic returning from whence they came after the fireworks were over.

At the end of each day we made time to come into town and actually enjoy walking the city of Hot Springs and the National Park that is the heart of down town. I had been here many times before, but Scott had not. So, as we walked the streets I explained how the city had fountains that were piped from the springs and the water that came out of them was super hot, 115 degrees. The citizens of the city and anyone who cares to is able to go to these fountains and fill their containers (containers vary as much as individuals) with all the water they want, i.e. can carry. The water is pure spring water and tastes great once it cools off. He was a little skeptical so we visited one of the more famous fountains so we could fill up a few water bottles we had saved. The water is very hot and under quite a bit of pressure so when you open the spigot the water flows out very fast. It takes some practice to get it in the bottle and not all over yourself. We both got soaking wet, but it was a lot of fun anyway.

The bath houses here are all undergoing intensive remodeling, thanks to the federal government and are slowly reopening to the public. They are quite majestic and were very popular in their day. If you walk up to the windows of the bath houses they have displays behind the windows explaining the history of the houses and the redevelopment plan.

Weekend Mortorcycle Riding in Panama City Beach Florida

About a month ago, August 18-20, we rode our bikes down to Panama City Beach for the weekend. We were originally going to ride down with a group of riders from Hog Heaven, in Columbus, GA for the Ride to the Beach, an annual bikers trip to raise money for the March of Dimes. We found out about the ride a little to late to garner sponsors this year so we just decided to make the trip ourselves for the fun and sun.

Along the way we took time to do a little geocaching.

We arrived at our hotel just as it began to rain. Since afternoon showers are common here we hung around in the room enjoying the view for a while until the storm subsided.

Once there was a break in the storm we headed out to dinner and to observe the nightlife of Panama City Beach. We decided to eat at a place called Pineapple Willy’s. This place is supposedly famous for it’s ribs that were featured in a Visa commercial some time back. The ribs were average, but the dinner was quite memorable. We arrived at Pineapple Willy’s just before it started to storm again. We were seated out on the far end of the gazebo pier and enjoyed our dinner while it rained heavily, complete with simultaneous lightning and thunder. Apparently we are braver than most because all the other tables in the gazebo cleared out as people finished their dinners and no one else wanted to sit out there in the storms. Eventually we had the entire end of the pier to ourselves. Magnificant!!

Saturday we spent the day exploring the city, marinas, and geocaching. We had lunch at a great little spot called Lime’s that was tucked away and was a bit of a challenge to find. Dinner that night was even more fabulous as we enjoyed the boat traffic and the sunset from the upstairs open air dining area of a place called the Boatyard.

We made our way back home on Sunday taking a few detours here and there to investigate some of the backroads of Alabama. Although the trip was very short it was a lot of fun and we were able to get a feel for how far we can travel comfortably on our bikes in one day (and how much stuff we can take along).