Traveling through time with the Gulf South BMW Owner’s Club

The day finally arrived. We had all been waiting in anticipation for our first group trip of the year. Being a Southern club, most of us ride throughout the year with a few exceptions. With that said most don’t go on longer, winter trips. This trip was special, our first club trip of the year.

The Gulf South BMWOC gathered in front of the museum during their trip.

Our president, Greg, had thrown out the idea of making a pilgrimage to Barber in January. It was well received and picked up momentum as the time closed in on the date. He had contacted Barber Motorsports Museum in Birmingham Alabama and set up a group tour. Most of us had been to Barber’s at least once and looked forward to the return visit.

Club president Greg Beck with a Dakar race bike.

Our club spans the area roughly from New Orleans to Baton Rouge and over to the Mississippi Gulf Coast. To date we are 97 members and growing. To make things easy, it was decided that we would meet at the Rest Area entering southern Mississippi, near Louisiana at I-59. Like all riders, we don’t care for the interstate, but with a large group covering 340 miles with dinner time set at 6, we started there.

On March 25, 2022, 12 of us left the gathering site at 0930, picking up some more along the way. This was a great opportunity for a few of us to learn more about riding in a large group.  In total we had 15 bikes and 20 members in the group.

Gulf South members waiting to ride off!

After a fair-weather ride up, we settled down into the hotel and walked to a nearby pizza parlor to eat, enjoy each other’s company and a beverage comparable with overeating Pizza.

The hotel offered us a group meeting room since we had booked so many rooms. This was an especially nice touch as we used this space all weekend.  After dinner, we met back there to discuss tomorrow’s plans and fellowship.

Arriving at Barber at 1030 on Saturday, we met our guides, Jack Goertz and Alfred.

Jack Goertz leading a tour.

Wow, what a difference having knowledgeable tour guides was. Jack and Alfred guided our group through the museum of about 1,500 motorcycles and vintage race cars, stopping to tell us a bit about certain exhibits and their history. We also toured the restoration area on the bottom floor, where an acquired motorcycle’s fate is determined.

Our time at the museum lasted well over four hours. This museum is huge and well worth the trip to Birmingham. One could spend a lot more time there, since there’s so much to see. In addition, a group from a GP motor club had rented the track so we enjoyed watching them as well.

Returning to the hotel, we talked about our day, reminisced about bikes we once owned, wish we owned and all the others. What a great time.

Part of Barber’s extensive motorcycle collection.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “Traveling through time with the Gulf South BMW Owner’s Club

  • The photo of the “Dakar race bike” is actually a street-legal BMW R100GSPD.

  • Glad you all had a great trip! I’ll make it one of these days.

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