2012-07-10 01:23:57+0000

Day 4 started with visit as mentioned to J&P Cycles www.jpcycles.com. They are one of North America's largest online retailers of motorcycle parts. Though there seems to be a bias towards Harley Davidson, the do have catalogues of parts for metric bikes as well - though not British bikes (sorry Alex).

Next stop was the National Motorcycle Museum www.nationalmcmuseum.org/. To tell you the truth I wasn't expecting much as it is located in a strip mall in the tiny town or Aramosa IA. Boy was I pleasantly surprised. While the location seemed wanting compared to the HD Museum the collection of bikes was spectacular. Of course there were Harleys and Indians, but there was a vast collection of early 1900's motorcycles as well as many many examples of every other motorcycle manufacturer. There were many Triumphs, Ducatis, BSA, Vincent, Honda, etc. etc. I spent at least two hours in there.

Also here they have one of the two original Captain America bikes ridden by Peter Fonda in Easy Rider. This bike is the one used in the crash scene and after the movie was completed it was scooped up by a collector and rebuilt. There is even a certificate signed by Peter Fonda attesting to its authenticity.

After finally leaving the museum it was time to get out of Iowa. I headed out on US Route 30 through the endless cornfields. Route 30 is also known as the Lincoln Highway which is one of the earliest transcontinental auto trails in the US. Originally it went from Times Square NY to Lincoln Park in San Francisco. It was America's first national memorial to Abraham Lincoln - pre- dating the Lincoln Memorial by 10 years http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lincoln_Highway. I was headed for Omaha Nebraska but decided to stop in Missouri Valley IA about 20 mins from Omaha. I found a room at the Hillside cottages http://hillsidecottages1.vpweb.com/,which aren't cottages at all but a row of funky low slung motel rooms. I didn't expect much for 40 bucks but I was pleasantly surprised. The tiny room was all funkily decorated with draped fabrics and a king size bed. There was even a kitchenette. It was all creaky and had a sloping floor like a cottage. Rooms start at $39 for the night or $175 for the week.

The last hour of my ride tonight was splendid. The straight corn field filled road morphed into a hilly twisty 2 lane hwy. The temperature had dropped a bit and the light was beautiful. I was smiling inside my helmet as I was riding. Then I found this unique spot. All in all - a good day.

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