Follow by Email

Monday, April 21, 2014

Experience motorcycles--all kinds

Over the many years I have been riding motorcycles I have seen a lot of prejudices. Dirt guys that hate street. Street guys that hate dirt. Harley guys that hate other brands. Other brands that hate Harleys. You get the idea.
Me, I love all bikes and love riding all bikes. While I was the editor of Hot Bike one of my favorite questions to ask radical custom bike owners--which coincidentally were not Harleys--was this: if a law came down and made air-cooled engines (Harley) instantly illegal and you could only ride water cooled bikes (Japanese) would you still ride? So many said no that it shocked me. They were not riders, but owners. That typos of prejudice exists all throughout motorcycling and it has to go. It hurts us.
For me, its about the ride. That blending of rider and machine into one entity, slicing through traffic, dodging cars, hitting the apex of every corner that approaches and launching off jumps and climbing hills. Cool how I worked street riding, canyons and dirt into one metaphor, huh?
That said, I encourage you to ride any bike you can for the experience. If you have spent the majority of your time on a Harley--or Ducati--ride an in-line four. There are very few things that equal the rush of a sporting in-line as it hits the last four thousand rpm in its power band. Only been on sport bikes? Ride a Harley--or Vulcan, Star or Boulevard. Try the slowed down pace of a rumbling V-twin. Its interesting what you might see running your favorite canyon at 40mph less in each corner--could be some great scenery.
Never rode dirt? Try hopping on a dual sport bike and run down a firewood. Its the ultimate adventure feeling.
Remember, no matter what you ride, you are part of a bigger thing: us versus them. Us--those that ride and represent motorcycling. Them--car drivers that don't care about us. By developing a better understanding and respect of us internally, its a lot easier to spread that thinking to them--and more of us will get to ride another year.