Big Motorcycle Ride Complete

I have been lax in updating this blog. Sorry about that… I have been really busy since I returned home on 20 September.

I described in my previous post that I flew from my home in the Eastern Mid-Atlantic U.S. state of Maryland to Phoenix, Arizona. That is about 2,500 miles away. Due to self-imposed limitations, I can only ride about 200 miles maximum per day, so if I rode my own Harley, it would take me about two weeks to get there, one-way, and two weeks to return. That is not feasible, safe, or reasonable.

When I have done these big rides in the Western U.S., I fly to a destination, then rent a Harley suitable for long-distance touring with a more comfortable seat and storage for my gear. My personal motorcycle is no longer a touring model (it is a small cruiser with no storage), so that is another reason why I would not ride my own bike.

Where I left off…
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Mid-Big Ride Update

Greetings from the middle-of-nowhere, Arizona. Day 4 of our “Crazy-Awesome Motorcycle Adventure III” is complete.

We picked up our rental bikes on Tuesday September 12. Unfortunately, they did not have the Harley model I reserved (a Street Glide) and gave me a similar model — a Road Glide. I don’t like it; it does not fit me well. But I will manage.

Our first day out found us riding on poorly-maintained roads, but not terrible. We made it to our destination safely.

However, the next two days of this ride have not been so awesome.
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Next Big Motorcycle Ride

Readers of this blog know that I am an avid touring class motorcycle rider and enjoy opportunities to ride in scenic places in the United States.

A long, long, LONG time ago, when I was on a first-name basis with Julius Caesar, I rode a cousin’s Ducati from Rome, Italy, to Naples, then on to Sorrento, then on the most iconic (and frightening) ride to Salerno along the Amalfi Coast (dodging sheep, goats, and trucks on very narrow, curvy roads.)

However, that was NOT the most adventurous ride I had ever done. A few months later, I found myself in Anchorage, Alaska. I rented a bike especially built for off-road motorcycling. Together with three buddies, we rode the Alaska Highway through mud, snow, rivers, and a million mosquitos to arrive in Dawson Creek, British Columbia. Two weeks, 2,000 miles, 20 million bugs removed from my teeth later, we arrived.

Ah man, what great experiences to have had. These days, there is no way I could endure or want to take such rides. Honestly, I do not know how I survived those two awesome adventures on a motorcycle. (Age of being “invincible,” I guess.)

Then I went to work; real work; real job; didn’t leave much time for motorcycling except for commuting and weekends around home.

I renewed my interest in adventure riding back in …
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Riding in Full Leather

It is glorious Fall! Crisp, dry, sunny and pleasant days make for perfect motorcycle riding weather.

While I prefer to wear ballistic nylon motorcycle jackets, there are times when the “old guard” biker in me roars, “wear your leather!”

I will not argue with my Leatherman alter ego! Lately when riding for fun (not for commuting), I have worn…
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New England Ride

This week, I flew to New Hampshire and rented a Harley Street Glide. My riding buddy “S” met me. “S” lives here. I followed “S” to his home and settled in as “base camp.”

We will ride 5 days throughout some of the U.S. States of New England — New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont, and Massachusetts.

Our rides are not aggressive, though the first two days, we rode a total of 371 miles. We saw…
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Back, Booted, and on the Saddle

I had a great time on my favorite island. However, it was time to come back to my home in Maryland. My return flights were delayed but made it, so I have no complaints.

However, it is a hell of a lot warmer on the mainland than in Puerto Rico!

I have caught up on lost sleep, and today I pulled on a favorite pair of motorcycle boots — Chippewa Harness — and before it got too hot, I…
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Skills Practice

I have been riding motorcycles for more than 40 years. Thus one might think I know how to ride safely.

Road riding is generally good… until it isn’t. “Things happen” like a vehicle suddenly crossing your path of travel, debris in the road, or an animal deciding to run out in front of you and freeze.

Crash avoidance is a skill that even the most experienced riders need to practice, especially…
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Motorcycle Gear Choices

I have ridden motorcycles for more than four decades, and enjoy it. Over the years, I have acquired, tested, and worn many different motorcycle gear products designed for wear for rider protection and comfort.

“Back in the day” like all Model T Fords, I could have any color of gear I wanted as long as it was black. Black leather. Denim & leather jeans. Black boots. Black gloves. And that was about it–though even back when I first started riding, I could choose a helmet color that was brighter and more visible than black.

Technology innovations and fabric improvements nowadays affect my choices of what to wear when I ride, as well as my level of tolerance of heat, cold, and humidity.

I always wear motorcycle boots, but above my feet, what I wear varies based on the ambient air temperatures and humidity for safe, protective, riding gear.

Here are my current choices of what I wear and why–
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Riding Reset

Friday February 11 and Saturday the 12th, we had delightful unseasonably warm(ish) weather in Maryland. After taking care of chores at home, I stopped reminiscing of my last trip to Puerto Rico with my beloved husband (two years ago this week), turned off the blasted computer and …
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