I woke well rested from one of the better nights of sleep I’ve had in quite a while and surprisingly it was in my tent. My strategy of adding another to my gear paid off. This new blanket/comforter was folded over my bright blue camping pad and by laying right on the comforter and using the unzipped sleeping bag as a blanket, I stayed nice and warm and was able to stretch out. It only took 77 days to figure this out. Sometimes my light bulb isn’t to bright you know. Page-Lake Powell campground used to be a KOA and the leftover facilities are still pretty nice from its former existence. Even with no real reason to improve their tent sites they are still making the effort anyway. A bit of construction is going on in my secter of the campground. At first, thoughts of getting a discount because of the construction came to mind, but like many times before a blessing was waiting in disguse. One of the construction workers, named Cameron, took a brief break and came over to my spot to ask about the Goose and my ride. I filled him in on my mad scheme and he took to it pretty well. In fact we got along just fine and he kindly invited me to the annual Frosty Balls poker run on New Years Day morning with him and his fellow riders. I commited to it and will stick around Page until after the morning ride, which should be nice and frosty. Since I’m sleeping in a tent everynight, my balls will be nice and conditioned for the, not so warm, joyride.
Two days ago I received an email from a fella named Mike who lives out here in Page who has been following my journey via ADVrider.com and IndirectRedirection.com since October. His timing with the email could not have been more perfect. He emailed me with some recommendations for sights to see while visiting the southwest. Little did he know that Lake Powell was pretty high on my list and I’d be heading due north to visit his little town way sooner than he expected. I jotted down some of his recommendations and replied via email that I be in his neck of the woods (uhh desert) the next day. He responded back with an offer of a free lunch at a nearby restaurant. I didn’t hesitate to accept his offer. An interesting dynamic was born at this point. Mike would be the first person that I’ve met in person who found me via the internet and my blog. Another part that just makes this special is that he lives roughly 2000 miles from me. It gave me a new found respect for how impressive the internet can be as a tool for linking mankind. Mike suggested that we eat at a floating (yep floating) restaurant that is at the Antelope Point Marina on Lake Powell. I take it that this is not the only floating restaurant in the world, but it does take the cake for being the world’s largest floating restaurant. Access is from a really long pier from the lakes shore. Mike arrived about three minutes after me on his Honda Pacific Coast 800, that he rides everyday to work, at the local power plant, in all sorts of weather. A golf cart shuttle is provided for the poor folks that eat to much delicious food and are to overcome by food coma to hike up the pier back to their vehicles. We being the big manly adventure riders that we are, took the golf cart down the hill/pier to the restaurant. Inside, Mike treated me to lunch. I ate a wonderfully prepared burger with cheddar and sautéed mushrooms. It turns out that Mike’s son-in-law is the general manager of the restaurant and marina. They are planning a massive New Years party with a wickedly upgraded fireworks show. A cover of $40 would get you in to party, see the live music, take part in the balloon drop, have dinner, and basically hang out at one of the coolest spots on the planet for the New Years celebration. I was all in except for the $40 part. I love to party down, but that was just outside of the budget. I think that Mike sensed that and somehow his son-in-law came over with a comped pass for me. I am so grateful for their generosity and can’t wait to see the fireworks over Lake Powell. Mike and I finished lunch, I promised him that I’d see him at the next days celebration and he headed off to tend to his duties. I stuck around the restaurant for a bit to absorb some wi-fi and give another go at uploading those dang pictures.
Once I was defeated by the wi-fi gods again, I decided that I wanted to get some exploring in before dark and Utah was the target. The state line is about 6 miles north of Page and off I went. First stop was the 500 plus foot tall Glen Canyon Dam. That thing is BIG!. The dam holds back the massive amount of water that creates Lake Powell and provides electric to the surrounding areas. A few pics under my belt and yet again I was off. With the Utah sign in sight I made one last stop at a convenience store for some caffeine and boy was I surprised when I noticed that the brand FMF, a motocross performance exhaust manufacturer, now has their own energy drink here in the west. There was no way to pass it up, so I bought it and snapped the corny pic of me taking my first sip. Lovely. In the parking lot I met a few ladies from Utah who were heading south for the winter. (Just like the Goose and I) They recognized my WV license plate and said “Isn’t your state motto for lovers or something?” I said “No that’s Virginia. Our motto is wild and wonderful. In West Virginia we get wild and then ride on over to Virginia for some lovin.” They enjoyed that little motto modification. After my chat with the snowbirds I headed off for the Utah border. At the sign I let loose a bit and snapped off some really fun pics. Their motto is “Utah. Life elevated.” So I did my best to get elevated in Utah. Soon after it was dark and I had to make it back to town.
Being Friday and New Years weekend there was no way I could just crawl in the tent and hibernate. I had to go try to meet some townsfolk. Page has a place called the Dam Bar and Grill so I strolled into that dam place like a dam high roller. And then I sat there like a bump on a log until this fella named Wayland, who lives on the Navajo reservation, sat beside me at the bar. We chatted for about 20 minutes until his wife called. He had to make a quick run to the little airport to pick her up. When he returned to the bar Wayland, his wife, and I had a very amusing conversation about anything from riding, to taxes, and of all things Forrest Gump. Wayland lives just a few miles from the spot where Forrest stops running in the desert and says that he’s tired and wants to go home. I asked him where it was and he gave me his contact info and told me to call him the next day and he’ll take me to the spot. One could say that I was stoked. I told them about the blog, my journey and it’s semi Gump-like theme. They couldn’t believe it and at one time Wayland actually said “I’m just waiting for the hidden camera to pop out.” like I was pranking them or something. Anyway they left shortly after and I followed suit, making my way back to my lush palace in the RV campground.