Death Valley, California

Death Valley, California


This is my first blog, so forgive me for any technical blunders.

Why the blog?  Simple.  Because I love riding, I love motorcycles and I really love the places a motorcycle can take me. (or you)  As I've gotten older, riding has kept me healthy, happy, and at some periods in my life, sane.

Motorcycles have allowed me to witness, learn and feel many things.  I've seen wild mustangs running by my side in Baja. I've watched camels roam the Sahara.  I've pushed my mechanical limits wrenching on bikes and I've pushed my personal limits, riding and racing in challenging circumstances.  

This blog will be a dump of sorts, dedicated to all things motorcycle adventure related.  Photos, thoughts, ideas, past memories and future dreams will all be a part of it.  If you enjoy it, great.  If it leads you to ride more, even better.  But if it motivates you to do something you've never done or take the ride you've never taken, that would be the best!  

Welcome to Adventure Rider Dude.


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Why Harley?

This is my first blog entry. (of my life) It was supposed to be entitled “why 14 bikes?” and I was pretty excited about writing it.
I mentioned it to my lovely wife, Maggie, and a conversation ensued. I told her that people don’t understand why 14 bikes, and how I always let those who looked at me funny for owning so many, know that 14 wasn’t enough. I had zero Italian bikes, as well as zero British bikes, and I called those two facts “a sin”. Then it all went south.
I mentioned something about my utter distaste for Harleys. She called me a “snob”. A snob? I’m not a snob, I just don’t care for Harleys.
For 30 minutes we bantered the subject, I was speaking Venus and she was speaking Mars, or whatever. She talked about my respect (or lack of) for people who love Harleys and I talked about “Riding”. Real riding.
As she continued about Harley lovers being people too, I talked about miles. I talked about hours in the saddle, pushing oneself to go further, to push the limit, and to go beyond. She talked about Harley riders loving their bikes too. I said “Harley riders, (and I covered myself with the phrase 'for the most part') don’t get it. This blog is not for them, as they simply won’t understand. This blog is for real motorcycle riders." Then she called me an "elitist".
Seriously? C’mon. An “elitist”???
I am not a snob, nor am I an elitist. I simply love to ride and at 48 years old, I’m intelligent enough to know that those who truly love to ride, do not ride Harleys. BMW’s, KTMs, Hondas, KLR Kawasakis, Suzuki’s, Yamahas, Ducati’s, and so on. Riders. (sorry if I left you out, but I’m a bit frustrated.)
Riding, and especially Adventure Riding, requires personal stamina and a bike that shares that stamina. Since when has “Harley” and “stamina” been used in the same sentence? As my 13 year old daughter would say, “that would be never.”
My first blog entry of “Why 14 bikes?” will have to wait. All is not right with the world, as my wife does not understand, and after years of marriage, I thought she did.
What do you think? Am I a snob? Am I an elitist? Or am I an Adventure Rider? Being the latter, does not by default make me either of the two formers. It simply means I like to ride – as in, the act of riding versus the act of posing.

There is one huge exception to all this, Mr. Scott Whitney. You know who you

OK, two exceptions... These Harley riders rule!... 


  1. I agree, you're not an elitist just because you have a passionate, and experience point of view. Would a Harley rider do the desert thing? Don't think so. More like a Sunday cruise with Momma in the baby's seat. Go for it adventure rider dude. Can't wait to read more.

  2. Maybe you don't get it. I currently ride an F800GS that replaced a KLR. I have been on some adventure rides, though not as many as some that include Baja and Death Valley. I have 4 bikes, and when people ask why I have 4, I respond, cause there's no more room in the garage.

    One is a 2000 Harley Road King. It is the poorest handling, maybe slowest of the bunch, has pretty crappy brakes and is a bit too loud. Talk about endurance. With the short suspension travel it has, 100 miles on it is like 200 miles on either of my BMW's.

    So by now you figure I am proving your point. But I like to ride it, maybe more for what it does't have, than what it does. No tach, no GPS, no radio. Just a motor and some wheels. It makes a great sound and feels great to ride it.

    So there it is, you either get it or you don't, and there's noting wrong with not getting it. But it is another facet of motorcycling that I am glad to enjoy.

  3. Good Point SactoDan. I never really looked at it that way. "Just a motor and some wheels" is where you got me. That has a good ring to it and if it brings a smile, it's all good.
    I like 8-900 mile days on the road, or 300 or so off road. The raw Harley probably delivers the same fatigue in less time, so from that standpoint it could be viewed as "efficient". I'll have to ponder that one. Thanks for the post.