Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Shirley

I sent out several emails Sunday night requesting help and the response is phenomenal! I’m so excited to be able to profile other female motorcyclists! My dilemma – who should start these posts rolling?! I decided to go in order of submission. Seemed fair enough!

First up, I’d like y’all to meet Shirley from Iowa. She replied to my email lighting fast!

How long have you been riding a motorcycle?  8 or 9 years (rode when I was a teen but got out from behind hubby and on my own about 8 yrs. ago)

How did you learn to ride?  Dad rode so I just started.  When as an “older” adult I decided to ride again my husband re-trained me.

What was your first motorcycle?  250 Virago

How many have you owned? three  – the Virago then a 650 V-Star and now my Harley Fatboy (1450 cc)

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle?  My family, including my husband, has always ridden so it was natural.  But what I love is the freedom whether riding alone or with a group.

Tell us about your riding. Pleasure for sure.  I have ridden to work but not on a regular basis.  Have also ridden while on vacation (we take them toTexas with us for the winter) and as a vacation – rode to Sturgis

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle?  Start with a size you are comfortable with – you can always move up as I have.  Don’t be pressured into anything.

What is the longest trip that you’ve taken on your cycle?  To Sturgis from Carlisle, Iowa (about 1200 miles round trip I think).

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? I am a member of both the National and local Harley Owners Group (HOG).  Last Fall my friend Janet Green (BikerChick) and myself along with two others started a local chapter of the Chrome Divas, a woman’s national motorcycle organization.

Do you have a favorite riding story?  It is really silly but probably the day when everyone was busy and it occurred to me that I didn’t need others to ride with!  Although it was only about a 40 or 50 mile round trip it was an amazing feeling to get my Harley out of the garage and just ride.  Besides I love the looks women still get on a bike. [Me too!]  Should probably say the ride to Sturgis since it was long and due to a very high cross-wind it was challenging  (and on my bucket list and it was also amazing) but as a woman rider who had ridden several years it just never occurred to me to get on and ride by myself.  Now I do!

What do you do when you’re not riding?  I retired just over a year ago – spent the last 9 years as the Executive Director of a library foundation.

Shirley, female motorcyclist


8 responses to “Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Shirley

  1. Shirley is cool! Love her attitude and courage in getting on two wheels. Nice profile.

  2. Well hello Shirley. Nice to meet you.

    It is always nice to hear of other lady riders and how they got into riding and why they enjoy it.

    Great idea Pam.

    • Care to join in and be showcased? Let me know and I’ll shoot you an email.

      • Maybe. I started out riding a motorcycle almost 30 years ago but quit and wasted time until I took up riding a scooter 5 years ago. I am again thinking about getting back on a motorcycle too. I am “moto obcessed” and crank out a blog sharing my passion. I am loving reading these stories because I often feel like I am the only crazy old gal out here doing this stuff! Thanks!

  3. This is my good friend and I am honored to get to ride with her often! She’s a hell of a lot of fun and a smart, courageous, accomplished woman! Congrats on a great profile, Shirley!

  4. Shirley, I can recall the first time I took my bike out alone – exhilarating, and intimidating – and something I will never forget.

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