TAT Day 11 – Detours and Debacles


Redding Campground, AR – No Head Hollow “Campsite”, OK

Miles Ridden – 160

Total Miles – 1,587

Today’s Travel Time – 10 hrs

Animal Totem – Snapping Turtle 

What I learned today – Life (and the TAT) is more enjoyable when you decide to stop worrying. 

It’s been obvious that surprises during the day are an inevitable part of the TAT. When camping, surprises during the night also occasionally occur. Despite a clear doppler radar before heading to Redding Campground the night before, it was about 3am when another thunderstorm hit. Being that we were camping next to an already swollen river in a flash flood zone this was a slight concern.  

 Dad fired up the emergency weather radio, and I rolled over and went back to sleep. I knew he would alert me if we needed to evacuate โ˜บ๏ธ 

We woke up a little soggy but no worse for the wear. 


 Something dad said a few days ago rang true- “Sometimes when I wake up, I feel like I can’t hardy move, but once I get going and get on the bike, I feel fine.” Yep. That about sums it up. 

 Back in the saddle for some more great riding in the beautiful Ozarks. Luckily the storm had come and gone during the night and the day was clear and bright. 

We had some miles to get under us before our planned lunch pit stop in Lincoln, AR, close to the Oklahoma border, but the morning wasn’t without its usual breaks. 


snapping turtle! dont let it get your tire…
side of the road bike maintenance
swollen creek
Well as I’ve said before, planning is priceless, plans are useless…. 


I’m not saying we went around the barrier…but I’m not saying we didn’t. 

A ways down the TAT we encountered another road closed/road work sign, which we promptly ignored. I actually didn’t have a great feeling about this one, but I figured we’d ride until we were forced to turn around. And forced to turn around, we were. 

So. Back tracking for a while down the TAT left us pretty well worn out. It was fun riding, but lots of rocks and gravel and by this point it was getting pretty hot out there. We paused for a rest and snack break and I came up with another motorcycle yoga pose- legs up the bike! Stefan also rigged up a plastic bag so my dash flowers would last a little longer, and dad took one of his traditional laying-on-the-ground naps. 




We decided at that point to punch Lincoln into the GPS and head straight there for gas and food – we weren’t carrying extra fuel on the bikes and it was already 2:30. After coming down off the mountains we stopped at the first gas station we found and decided to eat right next door since we were pretty worn out. 

There was talk of hopping into the motel across the street, but after some food and time in the AC we felt revived enough to continue down the trail. Even though we were off the TAT, we stayed mostly on backroads, and the scenery was beautiful. We stopped to top off our gas in Lincoln and set our sights on a campground about 30 miles down the road- we were gonna make it to Oklahoma tonight!

Well what we didn’t know at that point is that the plethora of campground resorts on the map were all right along the Illinois River in OK, and after the storms from the last few days they were all shut down due to flooding! After stopping at 3 places which were completely deserted, the last place had a few people staying in a cabin. The owner came out and solved the mystery of why everywhere was deserted, told us about a small open campsite down the road at a boat put-in, and let us use the hot showers. 

We finally got to our sleeping spot just before dark. I set up my tent, ate, and was fast asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow.  



13 thoughts on “TAT Day 11 – Detours and Debacles

  1. If you make NE Oklahoma today … if you are even still on the TaT at this point ,,,, You can always stop by to see the sheep, goats and alpaca at the Straw Family Farm … We love Tatters!! Watching your blog and the fun


  2. Enjoying the blog. Saw the address at the TAT Stop in AR. We were two days behind. Camped in Ozarks last night (Ozone 5/28). We are going get ahead of the rain and jump ahead to just east of Newkirk OK. Camping at Osage Recreation Area. Family adventure also. Grandfather, son inlaw, two grandsons. We have it a little easier – we are truck supported. Maybe we will see you on the TAT. Good luck and keep writing.


  3. My dearest very much missed Larkin, You are awesome, I didn’t know you were driving your own bike!!!!! Awesome๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰. So happy for you! Rose๐ŸŒน



  4. A Yamaha with a Husky emblem on it. Nice! No wonder I was confused. In the video going over a log, generally it’s a good idea to stand on the pegs going over obstacles for better balance, in case things sudden go south. I hope to do the TAT one day! Keep up the great riding and writing!!


  5. my buddy and I are doing part of the TAT starting Saturday. We will be around Alva , OK that morning. Maybe see you all on the trail?


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