August 22, 2014 – Mountain Home, AR to Hope, AR – 400ish miles
The nice thing about using an onboard camera is that I never have to find a safe place to stop to capture an awesome curve. The not so nice thing about it is that when there are a lot of awesome curves, I end up with over 1300 pictures to sort through. Also, the Ozark Mountains are beautiful, sure, but the scenery sure doesn’t vary much. I have a lot of photos of the road curving through tree-covered hillsides.
I was up late last night finishing a book on my Kindle. I still felt tired as I started down AR-201 towards AR-341. Driving east in the morning can be painful.
Following some cruisers, I turned onto the famous Push Mountain Road. They were taking it really easy through the appetizer curves, so I soon left them behind. There were a few groups of riders coming the other way, but I mostly had the road and it’s glorious twists and turns all to myself.
Leaving Push Mountain behind, I turned west onto AR-14. The morning had started out crystal clear and very hot. By the time I reached AR-27, the clouds had rolled in over the highlands.
Oh look! Another of those signs!
Pretty wildflowers. Yellow predominated.
I followed AR-16 west across the Ozarks. Fewer tight curves, but plenty of scenery.
I’m getting quite the collection…
Reaching AR-7, I turned north to take in the views of the Arkansas Grand Canyon.
The Cliff House Inn was just a few miles north of the vista point. My other options being the odd roadside quilt shoppe and bait shacks, I stopped for lunch. Gazing out over the canyon while eating my “Company’s Comin'” pie, I thought back to the impromptu group lunch at this restaurant back during the 2007 ST.N National. Glory days.
After a rather intense morning, I was content to zone out on the hills and sweeping curves of AR-7 all the way back down to Hot Springs.
Friday afternoon in Hot Springs was the quietest I’ve ever seen it. I’ve done the baths tour several times now, so I just rode through.
Reaching I-30 just before 5pm, I decided to get ahead on my ride for tomorrow. The R1200ST capably ate up 50 miles of interstate, putting me in Hope, AR for the night.