Sunday, October 11, 2009

Heading Home from the Ozarks

Yesterday was a great - and productive - day of riding, and today I head for home.

I took the on-ramp to I-40 east and headed straight for Little Rock where I stopped at the Central High School National Historic Site. I was just here a few months ago, but now find myself in need of an AR national park stamp, since I was unable to get out on Friday to Pea Ridge near Bentonville AR. This route would also be the fastest way home, not because it is more direct, but because it would be all interstate.

I arrived at Central High visitor center around 9:30 AM and the park rangers were excited that I was their first visitor of the day. I stamped my NPS Passport and then went ahead and took the tour through the visitor center, not wanting to disappoint the over-eager park ranger, before going outside to get some photos.

Mission accoomplished, I got back onto the interstate and pointed the bike south toward Texarkana. I briefly considered getting off the interstate when I saw the signs for Hot Springs, but came to my senses and stayed the course. It would be late enough getting home as it was, without adding a 60 mile detour.

I stopped in Hope AR for gas and lunch and decided to go check out Former President Clinton's birthplace. It was sad. The parking lot was empty and weed-filled, the sign for the home peeling paint and generally looking derelict. I guess this former president is not important enough to have his birthplace designated a national historic site as are so many other presidents' childhood homes. I rode through town and took a photo of a neat restored train station...about the only thing "happening" in this tiny forgotten little town.

Another stop for gas just north of Nacogdoches, some heavy rain between there and Livingston TX, and then straight home.

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