OK, we all like to be on a motorcycle and travel, even if it's just for a short head-clearing ride.
On any of your rides or long distance travel, have you ever had a great experience when you found just the right motel or the perfect campground, or a great place to spend some time. Maybe it was just a roadside stop to please nature calling and something happened, or you met somebody or something.
Tell us all about it. I have a feeling many folks will come together when they find out you've been in their "neighborhood".
I found this place in South Dakota, and it's NOT in Sturgis or the Black Hills. I'll tell you about it in a few days.
New albany, IN - across the river from Louisville, KY. We stayed at stone mountain - swiss chateau. great place - awesome views and excellent long winding roads full of nature - perfect for that low speed cruise.
Last Fall, a buddy of mine, a business owner with not much time to get away, and I took an impromptu trip from Saint Paul, Minnesota towards South Dakota. We were just gonna ride out to the Black Hills and back with no itinerary and not much time.
It was October. It was cool weather. We did hit a great streak of weather good enough to make the trip enjoyable, at least for the first four days.
On our way home, we were cruisin' East on Federal Hwy 14. We had passed through Pierre, SoDakota. We had to get back because my friend had to get back to his business. That last morning, the temp was a balmy 37 degrees. Our weather luck had run out. Now, we had to ride to get home. We had cold weather gear, but it was a chilly ride.
We come up on this small town. It's in the middle of no-where and the name implies it, Midland. Just about right smak dab in the middle od South Dakota.
On an old faded highway billboard sign, we saw the words, "Thermal Hot Springs". We high signed each other and took a right into the town.
The place was empty. The old bank was a brick building crumpling to the ground. All the storefronts except a couple were closed and empty. The place had a pole barn in the middle of town with a door on each end. One marked "Bar" the other "Restaurant". The place looked closed.
Up the street, there was a dilapadated old City Park and another block away was a huge old house marked with a hand painted sign that said, "Stroppel Inn".
When we got near to the Stroppel, there were some signs about hot springs and the place was open. We went in to find that this here woman owners Grand Dad had found thermal hot springs in the area a long time ago. He diverted the stream via a pipeline and had two large cement pools with this 108 degree water flowing through them right in the building.
The Stroppel also had some rooms for rent. If you wanted a bed w/ a bathroom down the hall, it was $10.00. Two people, 2 beds with a bathroom in the room was $30.00. Of course if you stayed there, you could use those two hot water pools.
We were hungry and the proprietor of the Stroppel sent us to the Bar/Restaurant. We told her it didn't look open, but she said they were open and just to go inside.
We went back and stepped into the Restaurant part. The huge pole building had a doorway right in the middle and the bartender was the cook/waitress. She had one customer in the bar and came through and gave us menus.
We ended up eating a hot roast beef dinner made from scratch and a bowl of hot soup. We were starting to warm up a little by now and we really wanted to go sit in those hot pools at the hotel.
We finished eating and went back to the Stroppel Hotel. We paid a couple of bucks to use the tubs for an hour. Now, we really were warming up and the thought of heading back out on the road and freezin' to death was NOT on our agenda . We ended up getting the $30.00 room and spent the rest of the afternoon and the next morning in Midland. Not much to do. We spent enough time in the hot tubs to wrinkle every part of our bodies that weren't already wrinkled. We ate dinner and breakfast at the Bar/Restaurant. We talked with all 3 or 4 people in town and sat in the hotel lobby on old wooden rocking chairs and read old National Geographic magazines.
My friend had to get back, so we had to leave. The next day was a little warmer, but not much. We still froze our b utts off. That's what we get for trying to ride 1400 miles in the middle of October up here in the North.
I still use that route. It's a nice size quiet road and I always plan my time for a stay at the Stroppel Inn in Midland South Dakota.