by Robert "Trip" Hilliard

Since my first trip to the Texas Hill Country back in 2001, I have always enjoyed riding the Texas Hill Country. This trip made the 7th time I've ridden in and around Leakey, Texas on my motorcycle.

When Dale McCorkle, Rodney Lee and I started planning this trip back in August, little did we know that the weather would be absolutely perfect for our four day ride. This year, our plan was to leave on Black Friday and return home on Cyber Monday with 2 days of solid riding in between. As I always do in my trip reports, let me introduce the participants:



Dale McCorkle - Bedford, Texas
2007 Honda Gold Wing GL1800 "Sparky"
 
Rodney Lee - Grapevine, Texas
2008 Yamaha FJR "PITA2"
 
Robert "Trip" Hilliard - Lindale, Texas
2006 Honda Gold Wing GL1800 "Cisco"



Video of the Twisted Sisters (Individual road videos below)


Friday, November 24, 2017 - I packed up and left the house in Lindale at 5:45am. The plan was for all three of us to meet in Hillsboro, Texas at the Love's located at Hwy 22 and I-35. It would be a 2 hour journey for me from Lindale to Hillsboro. Dale and Rodney were coming from the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. Weather was clear but cold, almost 40 degrees! I broke out everything I could to stay warm... thermal underwear, heated grips and foot heaters on Cisco. I was chilled at first, but after riding for about 30 minutes, I was used to it. I watched the sun come up over the East Texas countryside and arrived in Hillsboro about 8:00am.

After getting some coffee, Dale and Rodney rolled up and we welcomed each other and talked briefly. We hadn't seen each other in about 8 months. We decided to find a local cafe and catch up on things over breakfast. Once ready, we put on our gear and headed for our destination... Leakey, Texas.

It had already been decided that I would lead us to Leakey for the day. My plan was to take the "old way" that we used to travel to Leakey for memory's sake. So, we headed to Hamilton by way of Hwy 22 and Hwy 219. Hwy 219 is a sleeper of a road. It sports gentle "sweepers" that we always loved to ride on. It didn't disappoint this time. We made our way through Hamilton and down through Evant and on through Lampasas and Burnet where we arrived in Marble Falls. That's where we fueled and ate lunch at the Blue Bonnet Cafe. The Blue Bonnet is known far and wide for its pie! In fact, Hwy 281, which cuts through Marble Falls has always been referred to as the "Pie Road".

We stopped and ate a fantastic lunch at the Blue Bonnet, then we mushed on through Johnson City, Fredericksburg and then down to Kerrville on Hwy 16. From there we stayed on Hwy 16 down to Medina then we turned West and rode into Leakey on Ranch Road 337.

We arrived in Leakey at the Historic Leakey Inn about 5:00pm. I had already made arrangements for us to stay at the Lantana Room. The room didn't disappoint at all. We went to eat at the Bear's Den in Leakey then settled in for the night. Tomorrow we ride some of the best roads in Texas.


Lindale to Leakey: Hwy 31 out of Tyler to Corsicana, Hwy 22 out of Corsicana to Hillsboro, Hwy 22 to Hwy 219 then back on Hwy 22 to Hamilton. Hwy 281 out of Hamilton to Marble Falls. Hwy 281 to Johnson City, Hwy 290 to Fredericksburg, Hwy 16 to Medina, then Ranch Road 337 through Vanderpool to Leakey. Over 400 miles for the day.


Saturday, November 25, 2017 - We got up and ate breakfast at the Mill Creek Cafe in Leakey. Breakfast was so good there that we ended up eating there for breakfast every morning. We also ate Dinner there to celebrate Rodney's birthday.

The plan today was for Dale to lead us and cover 2 of the Twisted Sisters, Ranch Road 336 and 335 as well as some additional roads that we found to be interesting on the map. I brought my GoPro for the purpose of taping RR337, 336 and 335. After breakfast, I attached my GoPro to my engine guard, started the camera and away we went.

Weather for the day was perfect, total sunshine. Temperatures started out in the high 40's and leveled off in the mid 70's for the day. Perfect for riding!

We made our way through Ranch Roads 336 and 335, then we headed East and went through Utopia and Tarpley before heading South down to Hondo. We fueled in Hondo and headed North up to Bandera where we stopped for a BBQ lunch. Then, to top things off, we went further North and stopped in Medina at the Apple Store for some apple ice cream.

We left Medina and rode for another 3 hours through the Northern part ending up on Hwy 83 and back down to Leakey. We arrived in Leakey around 3:30pm. After fueling and eating dinner at the Mill Creek Cafe in Leakey, we made our way back to the Leakey Inn and discussed the days ride. Tomorrow we ride RR 337 again and whatever else we can come up with. Can life get any better? I don't think so.


Saturday's Ride Route: 336N to 41W to 335S to 337E to Leakey. Then 83S to 1050E to 187N to 470E to 462S to Hondo. Then 90E to 173N to 16W to medina to 337W to Vanderpool. Then 187N to 39W to 83S to Leakey. Over 300 miles for the day.


Sunday, November 25, 2017 - We did our usual...got up, showered, talked, laughed and ate breakfast at the Mill Creek Cafe. With Rodney leading today, we decided to ride RR 337 again and head North to eventually end up in Llano, Texas for lunch at Cooper's BBQ. So, away we went at about 8:00am. Once again, the weather was perfect and the morning started off warmer than the previous two.

Rodney wanted to hit some roads in the North Eastern section that we haven't ridden before. He picked some really good roads. We made our way up to Kerrville, then on up North to Harper. From Harper we took several roads that took us to Hwy 2323. Hwy 2323 took us into Llano. And it just so happens that when we arrived in Llano, it was time for lunch.

Cooper's BBQ is known far and wide for having the best BBQ. Not only is the BBQ excellent, but they allow you to pick the meat you want right off the grill. After filling our guts, we filled our tanks and started heading back to Leakey.

We got back to the Hunt area a little early, so it was decided that we would ride up to Mountain Home then over to RR335 using Hwy 41. While we rode down RR335, I came to the conclusion that RR 335 was probably my favorite twisted sister. For years I've told riders that RR 337 was my favorite, but over the years, I've changed my mind.

After traveling through Vance, Barksdale and Camp Wood, we made our way back to Leakey arriving about 4:00pm. We fueled up, ate dinner at the Bear's Den and went back to the room to talk, laugh and while the time away until time to turn in.


Sunday's Ride Route: 337E to 187N to 39E to 783N to 648E to 2323N to Llano. Then 16S to 965S to 16S to 27W to 39W to 1340W to 41W to 335S to 55S then 337E to Leakey. Over 300 miles for the day.


Monday, November 26, 2017 - And so it begins... the travel back home to reality. After getting up, showering and eating breakfast, we hit the road about 7:45am. Today, Dale was leading us and he did an excellent job. The day started out cloudy and cold, something we hadn't expected. But by the time we made it to Medina, the skies cleared and things started to warm up.

Dale lead us on a somewhat different route today. We traveled North on Hwy 16 which turned out to be very picturesque in places. Traffic was lighter. I don't know if it was because it was Monday or the fact that we took Hwy 16. We made our way from Kerrville through Fredericksburg and up to San Saba and Goldthwaite.

In Goldthwaite, we took Hwy 2005 to Hamilton. Hwy 2005 is a "less traveled" highway but the countryside is pretty. Once we made it to Hamilton we fueled and ate a hamburger at Storm's Hamburger, Inc. Once done, we headed on up Hwy 22 and Hwy 219 to Hillsboro.

I always hate the goodbye part of trips. It just seems so final. We stopped at Love's at the corner of Hwy 22 and I-35, wished each other the best and said goodbye. Dale and Rodney headed up I-35 to their homes in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. I continued on Hwy 22 and Hwy 31 to Tyler and Lindale. They got home about 3:45pm... I got home about 4:45pm. And another Texas Hill Country trip is in the books!


Leakey to Lindale: RR 337 out of Leakey, Hwy 16 North from Medina through Kerrville/Fredericksburg/San Saba to Goldthwaite. Out of Goldthwaite we took Hwy 2005 to Hamilton. Then Hwy 22 out of Hamilton to Hwy 219 and back on Hwy 22 to Hillsboro. Then Hwy 22 to Corsicana then Hwy 31 to Toll Road 49 in Tyler and North to Lindale. Over 400 miles for the day.


Videos of Ranch Road 337, 336 and 335








I traveled almost 1,500 miles on this trip and had a blast getting to see the Hill Country and riding the Twisted Sisters again as well as other roads we found to be enjoyable.

My thanks to Dale and Rodney for helping in the planning of the trip and being a part again. I always enjoy riding with them. All three of us have grown to respect and trust each other when riding. We give each other insight and keep an eye on each other. That's a benefit not many have in the motorcycle world and I am thankful. I hope all three of us can travel back to the Texas Hill Country very soon.


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All requests to use material from this page should be sent to Robert Hilliard.