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Day 177 – 3rd June 09

Posted by TravellingStrom on June 3, 2009

Wednesday – Key West, Florida

Sunset at Key West, can it get any better 🙂

Well, as I planned on being at Key West, I needed an early start, I already worked up a sweat just walking back and forth loading the bike and it promised to get hotter and stickier.

I left about 8am and headed down the island to the south and then west over the water, and I thought I was coming back from Tassie again, because on the other side of the water was Melbourne!

There was a fair bit of this

With some of this in between. As I could not use the camera in the real heavy traffic, it looks light on, but it just means I found some air. Soon after this when I got to Ft Pierce, I decided to get off the road I am on and try a different highway, I told the GPS to avoid toll ways but the next thing I know I am on a turnpike, which is I think, an American toll way. I kept seeing all these signs about paying, but when I entered I was in the wrong lane in bad traffic and ended up through a Sunpass lane. I kept on for a while, but everyone had to stop near Boyton Beach for a check, this is where I had to pay, not cheap for 50 miles, $7, so no way was I going all the way to south like that, so I got off at that point and back into the traffic.

I eventually got to a place called Fort Lauderhill, although I did not know it at the time, but I was hungry and hot and needed a rest, so I spotted a Subway and went in. The cops were busy booking some people right outside, so later when I asked where this place was, he said don’t stop next time, go right on past.

More traffic as I am going down to Miami and the road works do not help a bit.

I found a bank to see if my money had come through, but it hadn’t so this left me a bit short for the next few days unless the transfer hurried up. Every other time I have tried a transfer, public holidays have been on at home, so I do not how long it takes in normal time, this is the test. Anyway, grabbed the remainder and afterwards saw a great old car, not sure about the colour though.

It is half two in the arvo by the time I get to Homestead and of course I am heading south, I am still thinking about turning around at this stage, because the stop start traffic is horrible. Traffic lights everywhere and I am sure they bought a job lot of red lights with no green ones! You just get up to speed when another light turns up. This has been going on for the past hundred miles, so next time I get caught in the ten sets of lights back home in Musgrave St, I will know it can get worse.

I still had about 160 miles to go, or 250km but eventually I was at the start of the keys and saw my first bit of water. And lo and behold, I am in Key Largo!

A place of continuous strip malls and of course tourist attractions, but in between there are bridges and reef, the wind was great it started to cool me down a bit as well, no turning around now, I have committed myself.

Sometimes all you see is this

And sometimes this

After the town of Marathon there is the 7 mile bridge, there is an older one off to the side which must have had a draw bridge at one stage for boats, but it is no longer used.

Then I entered a Deer habitat, these are special deer and are endangered, so they strictly enforce the speed limits along here.

Eventually at 5pm I was in Key West, the first place I stopped at was a welcome centre, these guys help you find accommodation and recreation etc. Well, it pays to book ahead apparently, the rates were of course holiday resort rates, but there was no turning back, as the next closest place was an hour back at Marathon. They know that people will come back there and their prices go up late afternoon. I bit the bullet and got a room at a B&B, by this time I was real hot and sweltering in all the riding gear. But, the room turned out OK when I found it, but you have to pay for parking which is on top of the room rate, space is at a premium down here.

I found the internet only worked from up near the office, so I quickly checked email, had a cleanup and headed down to the sunset viewing place, it was about 1 mile away. There were a stack of scooters around, no ATGATT for these people, also a lot of bars. Beers, scooters and young college graduates, makes for accidents waiting to happen I reckon.

I bypassed all those bars without a drink, just to get to the Sunset Pier, here I bought a beer or two while waiting for the sunset. This is the in place to be apparently for this occasion, either that or on a cruise boat.

There was a cloud bank on the horizon, so sunset was a bit of a fizzer 😦

I then wandered back up towards the room, slowly and stopping for a beer now and then. As I intended leaving early in the morning I did not need a hangover, as I knew it would be the same as today. This place is for partying, I was here for the ride, although a few beers now and then is fun 🙂

I met a chap in Jimmy Buffets bar called Jeremy, we had a few beers before moving on, some weird stuff here. This is a place called MargaritaVille, after the song of that name, read it and weep Alan 🙂

The next beer was at a cowboy place where they had a mechanical bull, apparently they have ‘sexy’ riders later on, but that will be beyond my bedtime, there was some fluff around though 🙂

I like the writing on the dude’s shirt, “Liver is evil, it must be punished”

A few more chicky babes before I headed off home, before I was roped into a hangover 🙂

So, a late night again, but as breakfast was not until 8am, I could maybe sleep in a bit, I doubt it though, I have been up at 6 every morning just about. I enjoyed being here, the sunset was not right on the horizon due to cloud cover, but in the end, I think it will be worth it. It may take a few years for that to sink in, maybe I will come back and do some diving etc, spend a few more days, who knows. If I had not of come here, then I would have been kicking myself down the track.

Day – 370 miles and 595 km
Trip – 15,897 miles and 25,584 km


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12 Responses to “Day 177 – 3rd June 09”

  1. Another stellar ride report. There is a bit of “fluff” down there for sure. Enjoy the stay and the sunset celebrations.

    • travellingstrom said

      Hi Charlie, yeah it was fun, but gone now. BTW, that bloody tyre that was put on is not what I ordered, too late now, but I specifically ordered the V type tyre, I found out yesterday the one that is on there is the H type, not a good outcome as the rated psi max is 42, I have been ruuning 46+ for over 4000 miles 😦 I will have to check my reciept and see if it mentions anything like that. Cheers Richard

  2. pirate63 said

    looks like your having a blast,this report is great,looks like that bike has been a great buy,do you think you will have any issues selling it when your finished?
    cheers from bris vegas!

    • travellingstrom said

      Well, I am not sure, it willhave racked up some miles by then, but it will have ‘character’. Also beyond a certain point, it is still worth a certain amount, so I should come back with some beer money 🙂 Cheers TS

  3. Donunder said

    Mate that was always a place I wanted to get to when I was over there. You say you’ll go back there one day — let me know when and I’ll come with you! You look like you’re having a good time. Stay well and keep safe.
    Cheers, Don.
    PS: We kicked their arses in Origin!!!

    • travellingstrom said

      Sounds good for a beer trip Don, keep it in mind. QUEENSLANDER I have heard nothing, what was the score, and is Becsta spitting chips 🙂 Cheers TS

  4. Jack Bowen said

    TS again good stuff. You are like the girl from Kansas City. You went about as fer as you could go. Actually south you did go as fer as you can go. Still enjoying you ride report.

    • travellingstrom said

      Like anyone from Oz, I did what was needed to be done 🙂 Only 3 more corners to do 🙂 Cheers m8 TS

  5. Muddy922 VRSI said

    Not too many places better on the East Coast to go on a drinking binge then Key West. Spring Break the entire town smells like urine and vomit! 20 years ago Sloppy Joe’s had the best hot wings.

    • travellingstrom said

      Hi, I reckon it would be a blast with an open wallet and time for a few days pub crawl, not good for a motor biker though. Cheers TS

  6. Guy said

    Hey Richard,
    Guy here from Organ Pipe Arizona. I sold the wide glide and bought an Ultra Classic. Having a good time here and planning a Colorado trip in August. Not sure what your plans are but I, or we, all agree that you need to stop in here on your way back through. Dangerous Dave is still here holding his own. Looking forward to seeing you again and downing a few beers together.

    Ride safe


    • travellingstrom said

      Hi there again Guy I will try and work something out around that time. I am still unsure where I will be, but coming back from Alaska late July probably. I wil see if I can meet up somewhere for a beer 🙂 Cheers TS

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