Barns and Gas Stations and Totem Poles – Oh, My!

Yesterday’s ride took me past some … interesting … roadside distractions – er, *attractions*. These are some of the reasons I didn’t get to Joplin until about 8 PM last night.

First, let me present “The Round Barn.” It was built in 1898 or thereabouts, and it was restored (rebuilt, actually, because by that time the original roof had fallen in) in the late 1990s. There is a ground floor and a loft. The peak of the roof is 34 feet above the loft floor. There are no joists or anything; It’s just a huge open space:

The Arcadia (OK) Round Barn

The Arcadia (OK) Round Barn

Custom-curved rafters were built by putting green wood in a jig and letting it cure

Custom-curved rafters were built by putting green wood in a jig and letting it cure

One of my Facebook friends lives in Tulsa, and we had hoped that my timing would work out so that we could meet in person – our first thought was that I might get to Tulsa two days ago and stay overnight, but that didn’t happen (I stayed in OKC). Then we thought I might get there in time for lunch yesterday, but that didn’t happen, either – a late start and those darn distractio – er, ATTRACTions – slowed me down (as did getting lost in Tulsa). But as we were bemoaning the fact that a meeting didn’t work out, she told me that she’s descended from the family that built the original Round Barn. It’s tidbits like that that you don’t find in a guidebook, and one of the things that can be so fascinating about Facebook.

Next, we have an old gas station that has been converted into a motorcycle museum. This place has the usual collection of road bikes, dirt bikes, and such, but have you ever seen a wicker-basket bike?

The accompanying sign says "A real basket case"

The accompanying sign says “A real basket case”

And how on earth a small place like this could have not one, but TWO still-in-their-original-crate bikes – I have no idea. One of them is from a  company that tried to revive an old nameplate (Excelsior-Henderson) but only made 2000 bikes total before quitting.


And then there are these motorcycles (a good-guy one and a bad-guy one) from “Captain America – The First Avenger”:


And the totem poles – who knew there was a “totem pole park” out in the wilds of northeastern Oklahoma?



I added two new states to my Route 66 list yesterday – Kansas (all 17 miles of it) and Missouri. I found a shady spot in Depew, OK, to have lunch yesterday:


I found a roadside attraction in Tulsa, celebrating some of its industrial history:


And I saw (and rode over) the only remaining Marsh bridge on Route 66. They were designed by Mr. Marsh, and at one time they were quite numerous.


Today I will cross Missouri and stay somewhere in / around / near St. Louis. I *may* try to follow Route 66 through the city, or I might give up – again. Only time will tell.

2 Comments on “Barns and Gas Stations and Totem Poles – Oh, My!

    • Yes, it is. There are two reasons – First, I’m on the bike for 5 weeks so I need more stuff than for just a one-week trip; and second, I plan to do some camping before I return home. If not for the camping stuff, I could probably get away with just the 2 big, dark-blue dry bags.

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