The Plan: Roll west through Detroit on I-94 to US-12 south of Ann Arbor. There Pam and I would peel off into the 2 laners and wind down through the Irish hills area of Michigan. I wanted to explore the old towns and one horse bars hidden off the beaten path across southern Michigan with an over night destination of Sturgis Michigan or wherever we end up.

The weather forecast called for leather weather on day one holding in the 60s and plenty of sun. Day 2s forecast was for isolated showers and thunder storms but mostly dry. This turned out to be mostly wrong...

We got held up in a bad traffic jam due to an accident on the freeway but once we rolled of the super slab life was smiling on us. A couple of small towns into the adventure landed us in Clinton Michigan. There we found the king of dive bars, the Captain's Lounge. Our mission of finding a pile of bacon and eggs with a good spicy Bloody mary. As the available ingredients for a bloody mary got smaller and smaller as the bartender searched the plan turned into Vodka and burgers.

Doc was in charge and did a great job on the bar burgers making us feel right at home. The bar's supplies were running low so he would list what he had and we would figure out what we wanted from there. It was the first time Pam had ever tried deep fried green beans so that was a treat.

From there we rolled west feeling energized from a belly full of burger and fries. A little farther down the road we rolled into Moscow Michigan and hit the Moscow Cantina. The row of bikes was already growing out front when we got there. The kitchen was humming but we were still full from breakfast. Our quest for a good bloody mary quickly hit another snag. Moscow Michigan is under Christian Sharia Law and doesn't allow liquor sales on Sunday, only beer and wine. Apparently Jesus wasn't a vodka kinda guy.

Rachel set us up with a couple of good draughts and all was good. There wasn't an empty bar stool in the place and spirits were high. US-12 is a popular ride in lower Michigan and even this early in the season the roads were buzzing with riders.

We fell into a small pack of riders for a batch of miles and had a blast winding through the foothills together. I got a bunch of video of a couple riding in front of us before we split off. I just realized I forgot to include them in the video here (they are the speck of a bike in front of us at the 7:45 mark of the clip) and I don't have the energy to redo the clip. I gave them a card and will gladly hook them up with some great footage if the contact me. You know who you are, shoot me an e-mail and tell my your plate number for verification and I'll send you a link to download your ride.

I picked a small back road to explore leaving the main tourist bikers behind as we roared off into the farm land. After a while we rolled into a small town and decided it was time for a break. We quickly stumbled upon a small bar and as we turned around to park saw the historic placard on the corner proclaiming the town to be Fremont Indiana (yes I know I miss spelled it in the video). We didn't even know we had left the state and for a brief moment was concerned about Indiana's helmet law status as I was without.

My memory served correct that they are a helmet free state also so we decided to kick back in our newly discovered dive bar and soak up the local energy. As I opened the door to walk in the fact that we had left Michigan hit us right in the face as the stench of old musty moldy cigarette smoke flowed out into the street. As a non-smoker it made me appreciate the newly no smoking bars of Michigan.

I know, I know, the right to 12% of the population to smoke in public out weighs the remaining 88%'s right to breathable air and clothes that don't reek like an ashtray blah blah blah. My second hand bar smoke induced COPD cries a tear of sympathy ....NOT.

We had found the Fremont Bar & Grill. I Liked this place. It is the quintessential small town blue collar beer and shot bar. The people were very friendly and the Woodpecker hard cider was cold and refreshing. We settled in for a couple and enjoyed the atmosphere. The juke box was jammin some kick ass tunes.

We had so many people take the time to tell us to "be careful out there" with big smiles that it started to feel like a weird backwoods movie. I joked with Pam that behind our backs they're really saying "I bet they don't make the parish line" (Easyrider movie reference for you'all born to late to get that joke).

We finally said good bye and headed off for our next adventure. We zipped the leathers up tight since the temps were dropping as the day was winding down. We decided to roll west across the top of Indiana to US-66 where we could slide up to Sturgis Michigan right on the state line.

Before we could get out of the parking spot in front of the bar an old pickup truck slowed down full of an.... ahh lets say an earthy looking group of people that all smiled great big almost creepy grins and told us to "be careful out there" before roaring off.... I laughed and told Pam as we rolled off "This is either the friendliest city in America or we're never gonna make the parish line...".

From there our dive bar tour down whatever road we were on brought us to the Draft Horse Saloon miles later in Orland Indiana. This place was really relaxed and comfortable. Stacy hooked us up with some awesome dark beers from the tap and all was good. The building was done in some interesting art work and was old with a lot of character. The bar stools are big and solid, just right for the weary traveler.

The evening was closing in and the decision was made to get to our destination and find a room before it was dark. We set the GPS for Sturgis by back roads and away we went. Sturdis is the home town of both Mini-Me and "we'll leave the light on" Tom Bodett. We did stop at a cool ass old cemetery on the Indiana side of the state line for a walk about before hitting town and grabbing a hot tub room at the Best Western.

We then hit the only place kickin on a Sunday night, Applebees for a great dinner. To our surprise it was raining pretty good when we walked out and the ride was cold and nasty back to the room where the hot tub turned out to be a good decision, well worth the extra $10....

The next morning was a lazy one with a noon checkout after a breakfast from the hotel mixed with ribs and chicken Alfredo leftovers from the night before. From there we braved the rain for most of the several hours to get back home on the freeway. Every time we got a break in the weather we would jump off onto a two lane only to be chased back on the freeway by the next down pour.

We did make a great stop off of I-94 at exit 127 You know, the exit with the winery across the street from the Lion's Den dildo store. There we hit the Cherry Creek Winery for a wine tasting with our hostess Shannon. She was great and a lot of fun. We left rested and happy with a bottle of Summer Breeze, a nice white wine we really liked.

The rest of the ride was wet and ugly. Detroit never looked so good as we shot through it to get home on the other side. Once we got warmed up at Pam's we made a big pot of Potato Soup and enjoyed our bottle of wine reminiscing over a great road trip.