by Trip Hilliard

On Friday, April 30, 2004, three brave souls braved the inclement weather and rode their machines to Northern Arkansas to ride the "Pig Trail". Better known as Highway 23, the Pig Trail, runs from Waldron, AR. up North to Eureka Springs, AR. The best part of the Pig is the stretch that goes through the Ozark National Forest. The participants:

Dale McCorkle, Bedford, Texas.
1986 Honda Magna V65

Rodney Lee, Grapevine, Texas.
Kawasaki Concours

Robert Hilliard, Lindale, Texas.
1998 Honda Magna VF750C

First, let me apologize ahead of time for the lack of pictures for this write-up. I purposely didn't carry my camera on this trip due to the amount of rain that I figured we would ride through, but since I'll be visiting the Pig Trail again real soon, I'll have another chance to bring the digital and provide some pics of the trail.

Friday, April 30, 2004:
I met Dale and Rodney in Mineola, TX. at the East Texas Hamburger Factory. We ate a fulfilling burger and embarked for Arkansas at about 12noon. We traveled East through Jefferson, TX. with minimal rainfall and into Louisiana where we headed North on Highway 29 and then East on Highway 67 eventually landing us in Hot Springs AR. By the time we reached Hot Springs skies were clear. After getting a room at the Vagabond Motel, we left to dine at Colter's Steak House and capped the night off with some ice cream.

Saturday, May 1, 2004:
We slept late on Saturday morning because we knew it would be raining and sure enough, it was. Rain fell most of the morning and we finally left Hot Springs bound for Waldron after a quick brunch at the local IHOP. We arrived in Waldron about 2:30pm, got a room at a local motel, unloaded our stuff and headed for the Pig Trail. We figured we could ride the Pig and get back to Waldron before dark. About 13 miles North of Ozark, AR. we ran into so much rain and wind that we had to turn around and go back. The Pig Trail is not fun in heavy rain and high winds. On the way back we stopped at Shane's Cafe and ate a good meal. We gassed up in Waldron, then it was back to the motel to warm up and get a good night's sleep.

Sunday, May 2, 2004:
Sunday morning brought us fog, but about 9:30am, the sun peaked through and skies were clear. We decided we didn't have time to ride and complete the Pig and get home all in one day, so we headed West through Mena, AR. and rode the Talimena Highway, then turned South on Highway 259. We arrived back in Mineola, TX. around 2:00pm for another excellent meal at the East Texas Hamburger Factory. After the meal, laughter and goodbye's, I got home around 3:30pm. Dale and Rodney took off for Dallas traveling along Highway 80. All in all, it was a good trip. We put in around 900 miles, but the Pig still awaits. Maybe we can complete it another weekend. Stay tuned...

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