Sunday, May 30, 2010

Giving memories

Spent the night at my Father's outside of Oakwood, IL. My brother, his wife, and 4 of their boys were there. I was able to give each one of them a decent ride. Josh, the oldest and in the picture, rode with me out to my Aunt and Uncle's in Sidell, IL by way of Westville which ended up being 52 twisty country roads. We followed my Father who was in the car. 2 of my brother's were there with their kids, my daughter with my special 2 granddaughters were there as well. I don't see Josh (or my brother Dennis and their kids) as they live in Lexington, KY. So I had to make of the most of this visit. More later on the hot ride home.
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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Stereotypes and the motorcycle classes

I just finished a 3 day BRC class. The class began Thursday evening and was classroom only. 3 friends and another student all sat together with sporty riding jackets. Two of them had icon helmets with nearly black shields and shark fins down the center. During the introductions, they shared that they all had street bikes and were hear to get legal. All of them have sport bikes. There was a side of me that said, oh this is going to be difficult and they are going to want to do their own thing. I apologize for my pre-judgement. In past classes, it's those experienced riders who aren't as receptive as beginners even though they are taking the Basic Rider Course.

I could not have been more wrong. They were some of the easiest guys that I have ever worked with. They were receptive to coaching and really added some skills that will help them on the roads. I thank them for humbling my improper judgements. Here are a few clips of them riding Ex 13, Cornering. Yes I did ask for there permission for making the clips and posting them on the site.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Wind and cold

Thursday of last week I rode the Connie from Homewood to Champaign after I got off of work. I needed to ride over to Indy for the day with my brother to do a few things for my mother around her house. The ride down was sunny and in the 50's, great weather for the overpants.

Saturday I really needed to get back home. It was overcast, in the 40's with a solid 25-30 mph coming at me at the 10:00 position. I stayed on the open highway for around 15 miles but was not enjoying the ride. Even fully loaded and with a full 7.5 gallon tank, I was being pushed around. Feeling a cold wind running from left to right under my chin (wearing my full face helmet as always) and consistently having a sensation of my head lifting and being pushed, I switched over to the old US HWYs and country roads. Knowing that there would be a tree line among much of way dictated which roads I was to take. I've been on all of these roads before. For those not in the Midwest, along many US HWY's running N to S, you will find scattered tree lines on the west side of the road. This helps to keep some of the drifting snow banks off of the road. In this case, it eased much of the ride home. Instead of a quick 1:45 ride, I took 3 hours getting home and included a stop at a great small town motorcycle shop "Watseka Motorsport". As I lament the closing of my local MC Shop, I will probably being bringing my Connie to them for service. They have a seasoned mechanic who should be familiar with the Concours.

Anyway, getting off of the superslab provided led to a much more enjoyable ride (especially with Gerbings gloves and jacket liner). I will be seeking this type of riding as time permits for a slower but more meaningful experience.