Friday, October 21, 2011

Return to Shiloh BMW Rally

September 30 through October 2
by Jill and Tony Barcia

Return to Shiloh in western Tennessee is hosted by BMW RAMS based in Memphis (Rider Association of the Mid South) is held by the Tennessee River at Pickwick Dam in the TVA campground.

We trailered our R75/5 "toaster" along with our dog stopping in Murfreesboro, TN on Thursday night and arrived at the campground on Friday morning. For those who don't want to camp there are motel rooms in Savannah, TN about 12 miles away and in a Comfort Inn 5 miles away in Mississippi.

On Friday afternoon we rode the motorcycle to Shiloh National Military Park about 15 miles from the campground. Expect to spend 3 to 4 hours driving the 12 mile tour through the battlefield where 23,000 civil war soldiers died during the two day battle at Shiloh. Along the tour route are many monuments erected by the states and 20 strategic tour stops and a 35 minute movie at the visitor center.

There are many local restaurants (good food, inexpensive) in Counce a small town five miles from camp, a restaurant at Pickwick State Park and a hotel/restaurant "Botel" right on the river within walking distance of your tent. The Botel had draft beers for $2 all weekend for rally attendees. Both mornings there was a $5 pancake breakfast provided by the boy scouts.

Saturday there was a motorcycle show. The Vintage, over 40 years category winner was a 1941 R12 which had been ridden 200 miles to the rally and beat out several R26 and R27's (one in immaculate condition). The Vintage 20 to 40 year winner was a 1983 R100RT, beating out the three Toasters (one of which was ours). Other categories were classic, modern, side car, rat and "other" brands.

Saturday evening was the award ceremony, prizes, a live band and included in the registration fee, a delicious BBQ dinner. Thoughtful extras such as hot, fresh coffee all day (wonderful on crisp cool mornings and afternoons) and a long power strip for electronic devices.

It was a great rally, well organized (265 attendees) and everyone got a plastic mug and rally pin.

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