Morris county near Diamond Springs
June 26-27, 2004 in the Flint Hills of Marion, Chase, and Morris counties. Forecasts called for rain and thunderstorms both days ... we got lucky.

Arriving in Cottonwood Falls on Saturday were: Craig Roth, McPherson - KLR650, Dave Dixon, Wichita - XR650L, Michael Krehbiel, Pretty Prairie - XL350, Larry McGillivary, Manhattan - DR350, Clark Luster, Lawrence - DRZ400, Chris Greenhoot, Lawrence - KTM625 SXC, Jeff Roth, Hutchinson - KTM 620 RXC, and Roger Baugh, Wichita - KLR650.

After breakfast at the Emma Chase Cafe, we rode south to a minumim maintenance road along Coyne Branch Creek that connected us to the ghost town of Clements. Several stream crossings were enjoyed along the way. We also encountered two flats on two bikes within ten minutes of one another. Tools, experience, and patches were abundant ... and our downtime was minimum.

We then threaded our way along the Rock Creek valley east to Bazaar, then turned south along Sharpes Creek to Matfield Green. We hit the pavement at Matfield Green, then burned to Cassoday for a late lunch. Following lunch, Chris, Clark, Larry and Michael decided upon some extended riding to the east, while Dave, Craig, and Roger turned north to ride the thirty-odd miles to Country Dreams B&B in Marion county.

On highway K-177 outside of Matfield Green, BT Kansas almost got a new webmaster when an errant pick-up truck driver made an abrupt left-hand turn in front of him without signals or consciousness. (a KLR is indeed capable of two-wheel controlled lock from 60 mph without the need for stainless steel hydraulic brake lines!)

Chris, Clark, and Roger stayed over at Country Dreams Bed and Breakfast Saturday evening. Fishing was great, the meal prepared by our hosts Kent and Alice Richmond was delicious and plentiful.

Sunday morning, we were greeted with the appearance of Craig Roth, who had ridden back from McPherson, and Tom Harmon, Durham - KLR650. Tom led us north into the Diamond Springs area of Morris county. Heavy rains hours before and deeply rutted minimum maintenance roads hidden in tall grass .... get the picture? Craig got a little dirty on a get-off or two, and Roger experienced his first get-off in nearly three decades. Both bikes fared well ... and more importantly, so did the tired riders who had to lift their machines up out of the mud.

Leaving Diamond Springs, we rode more open range and minimum maintenance roads along the northern edge of the Prairie Grasslands National Park, then cut north to Council Grove and lunch. Following lunch, we went our separate ways home.

It was a great weekend. The Flint Hills are emerald green and full of wildflowers this year. We tried a number of unknown roads, met a few deer and cows along the way, and came out grinning on the other side!

Click on a thumbnail to view a larger image. Use your browser's "back" button, or the "left" arrow in the navigation bar to return to this page.
home | safety | links | photo gallery | e-mail | bulletin board