Spring 2006 One-Nighter
Thursday [April 18, 2006] was such a beautiful day that when the chance offered itself to do an overnight tour, I jumped for it. Doesn't take long to load your bike when all you are taking is a tent, sleeping bag, pad and what few clothes. With the burn ban in effect, any sort of cooking was out of the question. I grabbed my small travel case of toiletries and was ready to go, but realized that I hadn't decided where. The Canadian River meanders along southwest of Moore, through Newcastle and just south of Norman. A number of roads go to within a quarter mile of it and trails branch of from them to spots along the bank where noodlers like to feel out the big catfish.
I had never been to that area, having only heard about it but it offered a possibility, all I needed to do was find a spot far enough away from people that I would never be noticed. I stopped at a Subway for dinner and a 20oz Coke and chips. I'd worry about breakfast tomorrow morning. Six miles south on Eastern to Tecumseh Road, west four miles to where it turns south again just across the river from Newcastle. It had turned to dirt by then but was good riding.
I checked out one of the paths turning off to the west but it took me to a clearing littered with beer bottles and other trash. I figured that I'd probably end up in the middle of a drunken party there so looked further south. I finally spotted this trail too narrow for a vehicle and pushed my bike to its end at where the dirt turned to river sand. Back a few hundred feet and off the trail I found a small clearing that like Goldilock’s, it was just right. By the time I got the tent up, the sun had set and dusk was creeping in.
I turned my small radio on and found little choice other than thumping hip hop or the local station carrying the last dying gasps of the Hornets as they lost to the Lakers in their last game of the season. When the Hornets were down by about twenty-five points, I turned it off and settled in for the night.
Along some time past midnight, I was awakened by a fracas going on not far from my tent. I was never able to figure out what sort of critter or critters were involved but from the growling, squealing and thrashing around, it must have been a good one, went on for at least ten minutes before it suddenly became quite. Don't know if they called it a draw or one gave up and got out of Dodge.
It was light in the east when I woke up and the sun was up by the time I had struck camp and loaded the bike. Pushed it back to the road and headed for home with a stop off at Ozzie's Cafe at Max Westheimer Airport for a typical Okie breakfast of biscuits, gravy, scrambled eggs and sausage.
Any more, these occasional overnight tours are about all I can manage but I find them almost as much fun as something longer. You gotta take what you can get.
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Copyright © 2006 by Jim Foreman