Sunday, July 10, 2016

2016 Iowa Moto Guzzi Rally

Some corn, some beans, a fence post and the red bike.  I was out the door around 6AM Friday morning, this time not on a Guzzi but I did at least manage to get the Country of Origin correct.

An absolutely perfect morning to be out, nice enough for me to get an "Eleven Over" infraction; thank you for your kindness and flexibility Officer Tom.

It was just after 9:30 when I rolled into the Elkader City Park and I was thirsty, started with the coffee and then later moved on to a 50:50 mix of lemonade and iced tea.

 And 2 cookies.....

Setup went fast down in the far corner of the grounds and it was soon time to start exploring the equipment and see which friends at already arrived.  Mike, Dave and Dan were already there on Thursday.

Dan and Dave loaded up the dogs and sidecars so that we could head over towards the river and Guttenberg.  Enjoying the shade as well as the fact that the river was flowing by, it was time for lunch so we stopped at Joe's.  No ice cream though.

Eric and Jeff did their very best to communicate the fact that they'd soon be in town to me but apparently I was oblivious to their plans.  It worked out in the end though and our pokiness gave those two guys time to show up in town just before we'd left.

A nice loop down through Osterdock, Colesburg, Eastwood, Strawberry Point, a quick sashay over to Volga and then a trip up, over and along the ridge on Hwy 56 back down into Elkader.

I saw a lot of cool bikes though missed the Suzuki Mike W. told me about, missed the Hercules as well.

These young cheepers forced a major change in the strategic placement of the food line but an adjustment was made and Johnson's fine catering managed to persevere, much to the delight of all.  No one went without, even the little cheepers; mom was in and out of there non-stop.

Saturday morning, it was surprisingly time for food again.....and photos.

I took off on my own over towards the river.  Everyone else was crossing on the ferry and I didn't want to be left out.  There on the west (Iowa) side for the first trip of the day, we had quite a wait.  The ferry was over at the Cassville ramp and as I was later told, the Signal Call Box hadn't yet been put in place, so we patiently waited for the load to fill on the other side.

This Iowa HD couple was first, I was next in line.

The ferry is downriver, just behind the tall grass at the right of photo.

 Once we were all loaded, the Deck Hand two-wheeled the Call Box over in place.

By the time we loaded, some more rally-goers had arrived for the trip to Wisconsin.

I've seen this a dozen times now, here and on the Missouri River but it's fascinating every time to see it happen.

I circled down through Potosi, crossed the river at Dubuque and took US 20 up top as far as Peosta, then headed north via some very Fine and Dandy roads towards Balltown.  I've been to Five Points and Boy Scout Road before, will be there again.

The overlook at Balltown (no Breitbach's this time).  Down Iowa's famous C9Y, back into Guttenberg and then a nice long stop at the park and a very much deserved Raspberry cone at Joe's.

Back to the campground, on with the shorts and sandals, a summery flavored beverage or two and some discussion time around ye old Circle of Chairs.

 The Suzuki was back.....

 The kids were busy on these scooters all weekend, making the loops through the campground and naturally, standing up gets tiring after a time......

Steve's Quota......

 Rob's RX-3 was of course there......

 Omni present Bob.....

The local Pork Producers were busy out back doing up our Pork Chop Dinner and that means.....

the Pork Queen and Dairy Princess were there to help serve as well.

Randy and Louise with personalized plates......

Mike was once again gracious enough to let me take one of his machines out for a spin and now I'm more enthused than ever about owning a rig.....I may not even hold out for one of those Russian models.

At 7:45 we had to be lined up for the Sheriff-led parade through town.

The Queen and Princess were going to join us this time.  What good are sidecars if you can't take a passenger along once in awhile?  I know the Princess had candy to throw, I was too far back to know if the Queen had some too.

Action shots of the parade in progress....


After the parade I went up to fill with gas and thought it wise to get one more photo with Goosi.

As of last night, the forecast was great but this morning early I saw Special Weather Statement on my phone.  Further checking revealed a horseshoe-shaped blob of red, heading our way.  We waited for awhile and then finally decided to head for home.  Other than a couple of pulses of wind, we only rode through some moderate rain and not long after I got back into Minnesota, the rain stopped and the sun returned.

Rod and I finishing up our loading as the far corner of the grounds was emptying out.

Sort of the parade route.....downtown Elkader.

My Iowa loops......

The Trip in total......just under 590 miles for me.


  1. My most enjoyable rally so far! Great people

    1. Eric, it felt like an especially good one to me too. I agree, a lot of people very easy to spend time with.

  2. Resistance is futile, join us on the hack side.... :)

    1. Take me Dom, I offer no resistance.

      Getting closer......

  3. It sound like they keep everyone well fed at the rally. Must keep the energy up for all that riding.

    Bummer about the "performance award" guess it was just your turn.

    Still can't decide if I like that Suzuki Gladius or not........

    1. The rally is a "no hunger zone", one if not the best on that score.

      I was lucky....I promised to slow down and I did.

      Liking the Suzuki is subjective but I can tell you that the workmanship is first class. He does very nice work!

  4. You folks out there just seem to have too much fun. Glad you missed the weather - hope that keeps up, north of you looks pretty nasty right now.

    1. Karen, the rallies seem to be a perfect mix for us and I can't imagine how they might be approved.

      I was north today and drove through some horrible weather, just missed a big tornado near St. Cloud. Tonight our county is just outside the Severe weather watch as things dissipate.

      Please pay attention to what's in your path; it appears to be the season for warnings.

  5. I enjoyed your blog of the Motto Guzzi Rally in Elkader...great 2 days...your pictures are also awesome and really covered all the adventures of the event.

    1. Thanks Speed Bump, nice of you to say. I have great fun chronicling our bikes, my friends and fellow rally-goers. It's enjoyable while the event is being held and I'm discovering that it's fun to go back and look at what is now becoming years later.

      At least for the near term, I plan to continue.

      Again, thank you!