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Art Garvin

Adventurer and Endurance Rider

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March 2003

Monday - March 10, 2003

The day was finally here that I had been looking forward to. I packed the bike and headed over to the starting witness location. We started at the Shell station at 1539 S 3rd St in Jacksonville Beach. There were 17 50CC (Coast to Coast in less than 50 hours) and 27 100CCC (Back to Back 50CC’s) riders.  Gregg Burger played the National Anthem before the first riders left. John (Pirate John) Gilmer signed my starting witness form with 20272 miles on the odometer and I reset the GPS to 0. The witnesses were letting 3 to 4 bikes leave at a time. I was rider number 24 so I had a little wait while those before me fueled before leaving. Finally Assistant East Coast Ride Coordinator Randy Stallings mentioned number 24 was next. I filled both the main and auxiliary tanks and got my first receipt. The time was 5:57 AM ET. I logged the information on my log sheet and then was on my way to the beach to get sand and water for the momento I received after completion of the ride.  The temperatures were in the mid 50’s as I headed south on A1A to RT 202 where I went west to I-95 north and finally west on I-10. After 3 days of rain in northern Florida it was great to see the sunrise in my rear view mirrors as I headed west. I had gone only 35 miles and I needed to make a quick 3-minute stop at the rest area. My goal was to ride between 300 and 350 miles between stops. Just 30 minutes into the ride and I was already not meeting my goals. I would have to stop at another rest area 60 miles later. 315.7 miles into the ride at 9:41 AM CT I had stopped for fuel in Mossy Head, FL. The pump did not give me a receipt so I had to go inside to get one. I noticed the time was wrong so I asked the clerk to make a note of the correct time on the receipt. She punched it with the time clock. Only my second receipt and I already had to note the incorrect time. The sun was shining and it was a beautiful day for riding. This was my first time on I-10 between Tallahassee, FL and Mobile, AL and I was amazed with all the bridges. I-10 has many long bridges through the swamps and bayous of western Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Shortly after crossing the Mississippi River I stopped in Port Allen, LA for fuel. I had rode 313.5 miles non-stop. It was 2:02 PM CT and I had ridden 629.2 miles since the ride began. Feeling good about getting back on my planned distances between stops I took a 10-minute break after fueling before getting back on the highway. I was making excellent time and was ahead of schedule until I got to Houston during rush hour. I missed the HOV lane and there was not another opportunity to get in it. As I was sitting still I watched many of the other riders go by me in the HOV lane at posted speed limits. 45 minutes later I was finally through downtown Houston. 312.6 miles since my last stop I stopped just west of Houston in Sealy, TX for my next fuel stop. It was 7:14 PM CT and I had rode 941.8 miles since the day began. After a 15 minute break the sun had fallen as got back on I-10. I missed all the San Antonio traffic by taking the RT 1604 bypass. My goal was to reach Junction, TX or further that evening. Knowing I was ahead of schedule I stopped in Kerrville, TX for a short 15-minute visit with my nephew and his wife and newborn baby. I was feeling pretty good and wanted to make it as far as I could so I would have fewer miles the next day to get to San Diego. I passed the Junction exit feeling I could ride all night. At 1258.1 miles into the ride at 12:53 AM CT I stopped in Sonora, TX for fuel. I decided to get a room and get some rest. I went up the street to Zola’s Motel and paid $26.00 for a room. The odometer read 21579 and the GPS 1258.5.

Total Miles: Odometer: 1307 GPS: 1258.5

Tuesday - March 11,2003

After getting a little over 4 hours sleep I was back on I-10 heading west at 6:15 AM CT. It was in the mid 50’s and the speed limit changed from 70 to 75 in western Texas. I was excited about being on schedule and feeling really good after one day down and three to go. My first stop was in Van Horn, TX at 9:36 AM CT with the GPS reading 1521.6 miles since leaving Jacksonville Beach. I stopped at McDonalds next to the gas station for breakfast. I met a rider that was in the process of a 50CC from Daytona to San Francisco. I wished him luck as he left before me. As I was about to leave Rocky Brown pulled in. I asked him how he was enjoying his ride only to find out his shifter had just broken. I offered to stay and help but he suggested I get back on the road. I stopped at the New Mexico Welcome Center to take a 15-minute break and call the wife to let her know my progress. The desert heat was starting to become more noticeable as the day went on. Shortly after leaving there I came upon the first of three Border Patrol inspections I would have this day. My next stop was at 2:43 PM MT (GPS 1876.0) in Wilcox, AZ. John Oravec and Greg Martin rode in right after me. I saw these two more than anyone else during the ride. There were some riders I saw occasionally and others that I did not see at all going across country and back. As I entered Tucson, AZ I was delayed for only a short time due to construction. I wished I had more time to spend in the Tucson area. I plan to return to visit Saguaro National Park and ride US 191 between Alpine and Clifton, AZ. 60 miles northwest of Tucson I finally left I-10 as I headed west on I-8. Only 350 miles to San Diego and I was on schedule. As it was getting dark I stopped in Yuma, AZ at 7:19 PM MT (GPS 2184.7) for fuel. I cleaned my windshield and ate some beef jerky before starting out again. West of El Centro, CA I was heading up the mountain and noticed spotlights ahead covering an area that crossed the highway. It was another border patrol inspection. As I pulled up they waved me on. At the time I did not realize the beautiful area I was missing due to darkness. I arrived at the Shell station in San Diego’s Ocean Beach at the corner of Voltaire and Sunset Cliffs Blvd at 9:37 PM PT (GPS 2369.7). I had gone from Jacksonville Beach to San Diego in 42 hours and 40 minutes. My average speed was 55 MPH and my driving average was 72 MPH for the first leg of my Coast-to-Coast-to-Coast ride. I went to the beach and got sand and water before going to the Motel 6 (GPS 2374.9).  It was 10:30 when I got to my room.
Total Miles: Odometer: 1159 GPS: 1116.4

Wednesday - March 12, 2003

It seemed as if I had just fallen asleep and it was time to get moving again. I managed to get 4 hours of sleep and it was time to prepare for my return trip Jacksonville. Bob Coffland and his assistants did an excellent job organizing the west coast midpoint. They set up the witness location just across the street from the Motel 6 in the Hunters Steak House parking lot. I arrived shortly after 4:00 AM PT and socialized while I enjoyed a couple of donuts and an orange juice that was provided by the organizers. Glenn Clave signed my witness sheet at 4:26 AM PT with the odometer reading 22739 miles and the GPS at 2375.2. Shortly after I headed back to the Shell station where I had been just 7 hours before. I topped off the fuel tanks at 4:48 AM PT (GPS 2378.7). It was dark and a cool 55 degrees as I left San Diego heading eastbound on I-8. Traffic was light and I was able to make good time heading into the mountains. As the sunrise I was able to see what I missed the evening before in the dark. The sky had shades of pink, purple and blue and the sun gleamed on the south sides of the mountains. What a beautiful morning for a ride. As I arrived at the summit it had dropped to 34 degrees. As I dropped down into the valley it warmed up very quickly. Going through El Centro, CA there was the smell of fresh cut hay. Along the Mexican border 35 miles east of El Centro I entered the Buttercup Valley of the Imperial Sand Dunes. This looked to be a dune buggy enthusiast’s paradise. Shortly after entering Arizona I noticed my voltmeter was showing the Wing was not charging. I stopped at a rest area for a short break to see if I could determine the problem. At the time I thought my quest for the 100CCC was over. I rode to Gila Bend, AZ and stopped at the Goodyear Service Center to check my charging system. The Wing was charging fine so at that point I knew my voltmeter was defective. With a big sigh of relief I stopped at McDonalds and got an Egg McMuffin and an OJ. At 10:19 AM MT (GPS 2667.3) 292 miles into the ride from San Diego I filled up with fuel and after a lengthy delay I was headed east again on I-8. Going through Tucson was uneventful and at 1:27 PM MT (GPS 2873.1) and 206 miles from the previous stop I exited for fuel in Wilcox, AZ. Again John Oravec and Greg Martin pulled in after me as they had done 23 hours earlier in this same town. With my feet on the highway pegs, the cruise set, and listening to the 70’s channel on the XM satellite radio I cruised through New Mexico without incident. Just before joining I-10 again near Las Cruses, NM I went through my last Border Patrol inspection. As I entered Texas I did not realize at the time this big state was going to check my endurance abilities. Entering El Paso traffic was stop and go due to a truck accident. Shortly after getting through this long delay I stopped at a rest area for a short break and stretched my legs and munched on a few crackers and beef jerky. I arrived at my next fuel stop in Van Horn, TX at 8:13 PM CT (GPS 3225.6) 352 miles since my last fuel stop. I saw more riders here than anyplace else on the ride. Most of them were getting a bite to eat at the restaurant. I later found out that some of these West to East to West (WEW) riders would end their quest shortly after. After leaving Van Horn before the I10-I20 split the interstate was closed down for over 2 hours due to a truck fire. I was really starting to get tired while waiting for the road to open again. I tried sleeping on the bike but could not. After the road opened I entered a rest area at mile marker 233 at 11:00 PM CT and found a nice picnic table to lie down on and get some rest. Shortly after midnight as I was walking back to the bike and Gregg Burger pulled up on his Ultra Classic. He informed me had stopped earlier and missed the highway closure. Heading east again on I-10 knowing I need to get some miles behind me I made a difficult decision to stop in Fort Stockton and get some quality sleep. Once again my goal was to make it as far as Junction, TX and this time I came up 200 miles short of that goal. 1400 miles from Jacksonville Beach at 1:00 AM CT I stopped at the Motel 6 in Fort Stockton to get some sleep.
Total Miles: 1009 Odometer: GPS: 969.9

The Final Day of the 100CCC – 1400 miles
Thursday - March 13, 2003

After 4 hours of sleep I was ready and anxious to meet the challenge ahead of me. I was 1400 miles from Jacksonville Beach and I had 24 hours to get there. I departed the motel at 6:15am CT (GPS 3344.8) and headed east on I-10. It was a beautiful morning for a ride. The temperature was in the mid 50’s and the sky was full of clouds that looked like cotton. The further east I went the lower the cotton appeared. It was a strange feeling watching the clouds get lower and lower. Finally I was right dab in the middle of it. I eventually rode out of the fog and I arrived at Junction, TX at 9:01am CT (200 miles). I filled the tanks and had breakfast at Micky D’s. I headed toward San Antonio and took the 1604 bypass. The sun was shining, I was making pretty good time, and everything seemed to be going right. As I got closer to Houston all I could do is think of the traffic a couple of days earlier when I missed the HOV lane. The skies started to darken ahead of me. As I got into the Houston area the roads were wet and it appeared that a heavy storm had just went through. I was able to ride through Houston without any delays and I stopped for fuel in Winnie, TX at 3:01pm CT (369 miles). As I was getting off the exit I noticed high water in every direction. Entering the gas station I rode through the water going over the top of my foot pegs. After leaving Winnie the skies really blackened and just before entering Beaumont the skies let loose. I was in an extremely bad torrential downpour. I decided to keep riding and the rain eventually went from extreme to a heavy downpour. I noticed the FI light on the Wing’s instrument panel had come on. I called my wife on the cell phone and asked her to call my dealer to see if I could keep riding the bike with the light on. She called me back and informed me that I would need to stop and put the kickstand down, turn off the key, and then turn the key back on and watch the light flash. I stopped at the next exit at a gas station under the canopy to stay out of the rain. After 4 long flashes and 1 quick flash I called Greg at All Seasons in Wooster, OH back to let him know I had a code 41. He checked the service manual and stated that a code 41 was a faulty side stand switch. He said it would not hurt anything and to keep on riding. After a short delay from me riding through high water I was back on the road again. Shortly after I was back on the interstate the code apparently cleared itself as the light went out. Only 276 miles since fueling, at 8:08pm CT I stopped in Covington, LA for fuel.  The rain had really taken a toll on me and I had 580 miles to go. I considered getting a room and calling it quits. I decided to head east further before giving up. The rain started to lighten and all of a sudden I was feeling much better with an attitude to complete my quest. Mississippi and Alabama came and went without incident. 30 miles into Florida I stopped at a rest area to take a short break. To my surprise Rocky Brown was there. The last time I saw him was in Van Horn going west with a broken shifter. I did not realize he had it fixed and made it to San Diego in time. We decided to ride together and I took the lead. After about 45 minutes he took the lead, which really helped me out as I was starting to get sleepy. I only followed him about 15 miles and flashed my lights to let him know I was going to exit and stopped in Ponce.De.Leon, FL for some needed rest. At 12:08am CT, 269 miles since fueling in Covington, LA, I pulled into a gas station and noticed Wally Nichols was there. I told him I was going to go back to the rest area beside the station and check into the ironbutt motel for an hour. He said it was a good idea and after fueling we both found a picnic table. Shortly after falling asleep a female security guard woke us. She stated that if her boss noticed us there that she would get into trouble for letting us sleep there. She suggested a place in the rest area that we would not be seen. It seemed as if I had just fallen asleep and Wally woke me up to let me know it was time to ride. We had less than 300 miles to go. We rode together for a while before I decided to stop and get something to drink and take a break. After a short break I was on my final leg of the ride. Rocky Brown and Richard Buber were sound asleep as I pulled into the Shell station in Jacksonville Beach at 7:31am ET (GPS 4747.9) 291 miles since I had done the same. 
Total Miles: 1460 Odometer: GPS: 1403.1

Friday - March 14, 2003

At 7:52am ET Gary Wothe signed my 100CCC end of ride witness form. The ride was complete, I had ridden 4747.9 GPS miles coast to coast to coast in 97 hours and 34 minutes. It was great watching the other finishers arrive. Not only did I feel good about my ride but I was glad for those who finished as well. We started with 27 East to West to East riders with 26 finishing setting a new world record. The following is a list of those who were part of the new record:

Will Allender, Don Braziel, Rocky Brown, David Bruischart, Richard Buber, Gregg Burger, Art Garvin, Michael Glass, Bruce Harris Jr., Steven Hebert, Ulrich Hermeler, Dave Hinks, Chuck Huber, Jason Jonas, Victoria Juodenaite, Alan Leduc, Greg Martin, Ron McNary, Jeff Miller, Bob Moore, Wally Nichols, John Oravec, Jon David Power, Gerald Roberts, Gary Schaefer, Bill Wade