Friday, June 29, 2012

Born Free Trips From the Past

Another video from the past, this one is from the Born Free trip two years ago(BF2).

Camping out in the Rockies, riding through the Mojave, Cajon Pass, repairs at Sunrise Cycles with Koski and Johnny Surprise, L.A. night-riding, breakdowns, garage parties at Dustin's, Huntington Beach, and the ride back through Arizona and Utah.

What a trip this was...

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Pabst Blue Ribbon - Thirsty Thursday

You might think it's stupid, I think it's hilarious.

I've got a taste for livin', I'm thinking cold blue ribbon, I've got Pabst blue ribbon on my mind.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Leading Up to BF3

Already posted this in the past, but thought those of you going to Born Free, or sitting at home wishing you were headed to BF4 would enjoy...

Footage from the months, days, and hours leading up to Born Free 3 last June. Did a full re-build of my chop for the show, which Irish Rich and I put in the builder's circle there. Rode that son of a bitch half way around the country on this trip. Having the heads shaved, a new cam, new lifters, and new pushrods put into the engine, I couldn't give it hell right off the bat. Finishing the bike on the 19th of June and having to leave town on the 22nd, I only had 3 days and 250 break-in miles on it before taking off for Cali. Once we hit the Utah border, I felt the time was right and opened that mother up.

If you got your bike ready, or built a bike, I hope you ride out. It's worth checking out and taking a chance at breaking down on the way, whether you make it to Cali or not. Those that ride to events like these will tell you that you don't know what you're missing... Hot as hell, horrible weather, break-downs at the most inopportune times, encounters with cops, crappy food, great roads, amazing scenery, and memories along the way that'll last for a lifetime. I would hate to look back and say "Why the hell didn't I ride out", which is why I always travel on my motorcycle. That's what motorcycles are about right?... Riding.

Friday, June 22, 2012

A Year Ago

Today, Rich and I were on the road to BF3. With three days of break-in, my chop was rolling cross-country on a trip I had been anticipating for a large part of my life. To L.A., up the coast, seeing friends(Kirk and Lisa Taylor)to Washington, over through Montana to see more friends in Helena, then back down to Colorado through the great state of Wyoming. Ten states in ten days...4,000 miles on a chop re-built, partially for Born Free, but mostly cuz it was time for a change. No trailer, just gear, extra gas, and tools to get me where I was headed. That's what events like Born Free are about, at least for those that get their bikes ready, pack their shit, tell their jobs adios, and leave the rest to chance. Nothing better than the open road on a chopper with no clue as to how or if you're eventually gonna get back home.

If your heading out to Born Free, good luck and godspeed. Get it on, get loaded, get arrested, get your kicks.... Forget the haters, fakers, and trailer queens.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


Like I posted before, got a chance to see Kevin Bass while I was in the Twin Cities. Checked out his chopper classroom over at Kennedy High School in Bloomington, MN, then took a ride to a biker bar in downtown Minneapolis.

He and his wife Amy are great people...

Friday, June 15, 2012

Keep Ridin'

I have a problem with stopping for the night. Whether it's too early for me to stop, I'm not tired, or I just feel that I need to cover more ground - I don't usually stop where I plan, I keep riding. It's not always the smart desicion, but it's one I make time and time again when I'm on a cross-country trip. Who's to stop me, I usually travel alone.

So, after getting a head start on Tuesday night and riding from Stevens Point, WI to Albert Lea, MN, I got a late start on Wednesday. I woke up at 8 am and checked the weather to the west...rain from the southern part of Minnesota to the southern part of Iowa. So, I went back to sleep figuring that it would pass by the time I woke up again later in the morning. It didn't. Instead of waiting it out even more, I packed the bike and got on the road around 11 am, heading West on I-90.

55 degrees and overcast when I finally got going and it didn't take long for the rain to start falling. About 100 miles east of Sioux Falls I hit a thunderstorm. It was one of those rides where you see a storm off in the distance and the highway looks as if it's gonna miss it. Then the highway turns towards the storm and you get an "oh fuck" type of feeling, only to have the highway turn away again. This can go on, over and over again until you either hit the storm or luckily skirt past it, but it's happened to me more times than I can remember. This time, I was fortunate enough to hit the edge of the storm, only getting the light stuff dropped on me.

Further down the highway, once I was in South Dakota, the clouds opened up to blue skies and the sidewinds started pounding me. Heavy sidewinds in South Dakota, no way? Seems as though more often than not, I'm riding sideways through the state due to frequent winds hitting me from the south or north. Whatever, I'll take wind over rain/hail any day.

To make matters worse, my kickstand has a tendency of not wanting to come down from time to time. I got to Mitchell, SD and started cranking on it to drop it, and nothing. So, I had to back my bike up at an angle to a wall/pole and rest my back tire onto whatever was available at each stop, holding my bike up as a result. Damn kickstand, I've taken it apart, checked it, lubed it, you name it, nothing has worked. It works when it wants to, but on occasion, likes to give me hell.

I hit Murdo, South Dakota and headed South on highway 83, through the Rosebud Indian Reservation, towards North Platte, Nebraska. Hot as hell, roughly 95 degrees rolling through this stretch, but I didn't seem to notice it - a temp sign had to remind me of how hot it actually was. Drafting cars to keep my gas mileage up and watching the sun as it sunk lower and lower in the sky.

I hit North Platte at dusk. Being on the far edge of the time zone, it was 9:30 pm once the sun had set, but I wasn't tired or ready to quit. 600 miles into my day, I slammed a 5-hour energy drink and got right back on the road. Here's where things started getting a little faded. My head wasn't feeling too normal by this point. I think the wind, heat, and length of time on the road(almost 12 hours at this point) started getting to my head. Dizzy and dry-eyed, feeling like a tweaker who hadn't slept in days, I kept going. I could smell Colorado by now, so I wasn't about to quit after all of this time.

The white lines were messing with my head and traffic was scarce, both of which weren't helping me stay focused. I got behind a couple different tractor trailer trucks to block the wind, bugs, and possible deer, but they never seem to like when I do that. If any of you reading this drive a semi, realize that I can maneuver and stop a lot quicker than you can, everything's gonna be fine if I'm two car lengths off your ass. Stretches between gas stops got shorter, and the length of my stops got longer. Later into the night, truck stops seemed to get weirder and the people hanging out at them creepier. Didn't bother me, I just felt like I was in the twilight zone.

Finally pulled into the Denver area around 2 am, hitting warm and really cold spots of air along the back-coutry roads north of the city. Felt like certain areas were gonna dump snow on me, but I just sped up, faster and faster to get home.

In all, 855 miles by the end of the day - a new record for me on a single days' ride. A chaffed ass, a sore back, cramped hands, burnt skin, and a smile on my face. It comes with the territory and is what motorcycling is all about. It's not a glamorous lifestyle, but damn if it isn't the greatest style to live.

My bed never felt so good...

-pictures along highway 83(between Murdo, SD and North Platte, NE)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

It's not always fun and games

Always something... Luckily, shit hit the fan at a good spot, with good people to help me out. Tried firing the bike to get out of the twin cities, heading northeast, and I had nothing. No sounds coming from the bike, no lights, nothing. But, I was at a friend's house with my tools, a fridge full of beer, Rich on speed dial, and Kevin Bass ten minutes away with a shop full of supplies I needed.

Wire from my positive battery terminal to my circuit breaker was torn in half under my transmission. Before noticing the wire issue, I got on the phone to Rich who helped talk me through it. Obviously, I get pretty pissed off when these things happen to me. Rich helps get me focused on the issue at hand, no matter what it is, and the dude is a genius. I explain the situation, whatever it may be, and he can diagnose it over the phone. Priceless for me on the road, solo. On top of that, Kevin Bass and I had a chance to meet up earlier in the week, so he was more than willing to help me out. Kevin came over with some wire and I got to work, cutting, stripping, butt-splicing, crimping, etc, while the two of us downed beer after beer.

Got the problem fixed and everything hooked back up and the battery was drained. So, Kevin got back on his knuck and road back to his chopper class shop to pick up a battery and tester. Got back, I threw it in the bike, and she fired right up.

3.5 hours of mostly waiting for needed parts and drinking beer, but I got it fixed and ripped 275 miles up to northern Wisconsin. Great weather and a full faced to gaurd me from millions of bugs on my way. Pulled up to a cabin filled with food, beer, a bon fire, great friends, and a bottle of bushmills to keep me company.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

550 Miles

Blasted 550 miles on Monday, Denver to Chamberlain, South Dakota. Took highway 83 up to I-90 from North Platte. For those of you who have been through Nebraska, this road is nothing like the rest of the state. It feels more like you're in Western South Dakota or Eastern Wyoming, great road if you ever get the chance. Spent the last hundred miles in the dark, howling at the full moon and blowing by tractor trailer trucks. Camped out along the Missouri River for the night, clear to the East, with a lightning storm coming up behind me from the west. Great to get back on the road again...