Tag Archives: first motorcycle

Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet She’z a.k.a. @Shelina93

I’ve got another great gal for y’all to meet! She goes by She’z, is from the small town of Petaluma, CA, a friend of Jen’s (we met her back in July), and another motorcycle racer! You can catch She’z on twitter @Shelina93 and check out her web site She’z Racing!

@Shelina93 Photo courtesy of Seppes.com

Catch her on Twitter: @Shelina93
Photo courtesy of Seppes.com

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? I’ve been riding motorcycles my whole life. My dad put me on bikes before I could walk. I have a photo of me on his old flat track bike when I was a chubby toddler.

How did you learn to ride?  My dad (and mom) taught me to ride the ranch quads as soon as I could walk so that I could learn how to bring in the cows from the fields (dairy kid). Growing up on a ranch meant we had chores to do, and so we learned to ride more as a responsibility than for fun… though dad probably saw us out there spinning donuts and popping wheelies on his 4-wheelers in between working  😉

What was your first motorcycle? My first motorcycle was a Kawasaki 80 that my brother and I saved our “wages” for. Dad matched what we had saved so that we could buy it together. It’s quite the memory actually. I still remember us going to pick up that bike and getting used to the snappy throttle! And the love for Two Wheels Began!!

My first streetbike was an old Kawasaki Ninja 600 that I snuck home with… Mom and Dad wanted to KILL me!!

How many motorcycles have you owned? Well… I still have that 80, though it doesn’t run anymore. I had upgraded to a KDX 200, then a 125. Now I have a Honda CRF 450 and a little 100 that I ride flat track on. I also have two Streetbikes, a Kawasaki zx636 and a Brammo Enertia (electric motorcycle). Plus my racebikes… a Harley XR1200 and a Yamaha R6. Jeez, you make me feel like I need to clear some bikes out of here…. [Pam says, No way!! Keep the bikes!]

She'z sitting with her Kawi Photo courtesy of $theRiders.com

She’z sitting with her Kawi
Photo courtesy of 4theRiders.com

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? Because my dad rode a motorcycle, and raced a motorcycle (and still does). Because I saw two guys pop a wheelie through an intersection when I was a kid and I thought it was the coolest thing ever. Because even at 4 years old on a ranch quad, I felt like the world was at my fingertips when I was on a motorcycle. And at 12 years old I felt like I was unstoppable when I was on that dirtbike. And because for us, it was a family thing, something we got to do with my parents, and it has had a major impact on how close we are as a family.

Tell us about your riding. Commuter, pleasure, vacation, racing, or ? All of the above. The reason I started racing was because I had “too much fun” on the street, and I wanted to see what I could do with my skills that was productive. I still ride on the street, for fun or to get to a meeting with the Parker Hannifin guys. I love to race, I love to train to race, I enjoy instructing at the She’z Racing and FIM girls camps now, and I consider the trails with my dad and our friends one of my favorite vacation destinations.

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? Go for it. Don’t do it because you think you’ll look cool, or for any other reason, ride if you want to ride. Learn How. Wear proper gear. Listen to the motorcycle, it will teach you a lot. Don’t get discouraged when you are working on improving, we all do, just keep learning. And come to one of my Girls-Only camps! I’ll teach you, and you Will have fun learning! You can actually find out info on our schools at www.ShezRacing.com and Check out our Video

What is the longest trip that you have taken on your cycle? I don’t do a lot of adventure riding, so not terribly long distance, usually 100 miles in a day is a good ride for me. However… At Indy this year I think I rode quite a lot of “Distance”… I raced the Harley and the Brammo, back to back all weekend. Literally hopping off of one and onto another. That was a ton of riding.

Shelina Moreda with the Brammo / ICON Spec 32 - Eboz Edition Photo courtesy of Brammo

Shelina Moreda with the Brammo / ICON Spec 32 – Eboz Edition
Photo courtesy of Brammo

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? I actually just joined forces with the newly formed Women’s Coalition of Motorcyclists. It’s the strongest and largest organization of women riders in North America and they are working hard to promote motorcycling and grow the number of riders. I’m stoked to be a part of a group with the potential to help grow the sport of motorcycling so much. Getting more people involved in motorcycling (girls and guys) is something that is very important to me.

Do you have a favorite riding story? Seems like every time I go riding I have a new favorite riding story. A more recent favorite for me was when I was at an electric bike race earlier this year. I won my class and was standing on the podium with Eric Bostrom (my Brammo teammate, who I’ve looked up to for a long time) who had also won his class, we were 1st and 2nd overall! That was one heck of a day for me.

What do you do when you’re not riding? Think about riding… 🙂  When I’m not riding I’m planning and working on chasing my next goal (mostly riding related). Working on sponsorship a lot of the time. It’s hard work to find sponsorship and grow a racing career.

When we are talking about non-motorcycle related activities, I have a lot of other hobbies too. I love the outdoors, I like going to the lake, kneeboarding, wakeboarding, I love to travel, try new foods, I enjoy time with my dog (Rampage), and I like hanging out with my friends. I also like remodeling old houses, my granddad is a contractor and has taught me a lot about fixing up houses. And one of my favorite things is making Halloween costumes.

Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Wendy

Don’t you love a good referral? Whether it is for a service provider, restaurant, or product I always appreciate hearing what a friend has to say on the topic. Well, that’s how I met my next guest. Back in June of this year I profiled Sofia a.k.a. @CandyStripes327 (who was recommended by Krystyna a.k.a. @KK352) sent me an email introducing me to Wendy! I reached out and she agreed to add her story too! Wendy is from Manhattan Beach, CA and was given the nickname “Diablita” by her fellow Crest Riders when she use to ride the canyons in SoCal. You can find her on Facebook at Helmets n’ Heels! Without further delay, here’s Wendy’s story in her own words!

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? Since 1994

How did you learn to ride? Tried to teach myself on a boyfriends Vespa, wheelied it across the street and up the curb into the wall, I never told him. I was 18. Scared myself and thought I wasn’t coordinated enough and should stay away from bikes.

Then tried again at 27 on a Heritage Softail with a boyfriend’s instruction, got it that time. Was hooked 🙂

What was your first motorcycle? Bought my own ’93 HD Fatboy, as the boyfriend’s bike had too many rules.

How many have you owned? 23

Too Many Kids - T. Schmieder, Germany

Too Many Kids -photo by T. Schmieder, Germany

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? Love the feeling of freedom also the challenges of two-wheels. The ability to get thru traffic, living in LA  has its practical advantages.

Catalina GP 2010 -photo by Joe Bonello, California

Catalina GP 2010 -photo by Joe Bonello, California

Tell us about your riding. I love meeting people and new challenges.  I have found motorcycle people are usually really interesting characters, and I feel very at home especially when racing motorcycles. I like to compete, have since I was a kid. Like to push myself, even if I am a little scared.  Street riding, touring, collecting and racing have introduced me to very cool experiences and people from all walks of life in many countries, in ways I would have never experienced otherwise.

Just recently for example I was very frustrated after breaking my wrist in February this year while practicing at the track. In addition I had only managed one race in April due to mechanical problems and a not so good mechanic and then work conflicts.  So I decided to go to race at the Barber Vintage Festival in Alabama and then race Daytona the weekend afterwards. I bought a used motorcycle trailer and fixed it up so I could camp from it and haul it cross country by myself. Normally I have the bikes transported and fly out.

Daytona

Daytona

This was my first time and chance to see the country driving, mix in some work and go racing.  I got to Barber and the bike broke in practice, I holed the piston, not sure what was exactly wrong with it, I was reluctant to put in a new one and do it again and have worse consequences.

I was set to go home and one of my fellow racers Craig Breckon offered up his Honda Ascot 500cc and said I could race his bike in Middleweight Superbike (Vintage). He said “We don’t come here to watch we come to race!” I couldn’t believe he was offering and was a bit nervous I had never raced anyone else’s bike and I had no practice on it. I slept on the idea and the next morning I did a couple of scrub laps on it and said okay. I got 8th out of 13, even though I was out horse powered as some of the bikes had 860cc!  I had so much fun I raced it again the next day.

Barber 2013-Borrowed Ascot TT -photo by T. Schmieder, Germany

Barber 2013-Borrowed Ascot TT -photo by T. Schmieder, Germany

Then I was approached by another fellow racer Jack Parker a very fast two stroke racer who asked if I wanted to race his very fast Yamaha CT-1 two stroke at Daytona. I told him I have a two stroke race bike but haven’t raced it, and didn’t feel competent yet.  He said “My bike is “unseizeable”.  So I said okay why not a little practice on a two stroke.  Well I went to Daytona got one practice session in, he made a gearing change so it would go faster and I seized it two laps in the race just as I came off the banks after passing a couple of packs of bikes. I felt really bad about that, he offered up his other bike, but I was not wanting a reputation of breaking bikes so I passed.  But that is the spirit of the vintage racing scene, people helping each other.  This weekend taught me many things not only about the bikes but the people who own them. I also got approached by several expert tuners offering assistance on fixing my bike who live all over the country. And I met many more racers who also live in other countries, as we have a World Challenge.  You don’t get these opportunities sitting at home. So traveling either on a bike or with a bike is to me the most fun.

Hat Trick - WSMC

Hat Trick – WSMC

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? Practice, practice, practice for those who already ride, as well as try taking a couple schools and don’t be afraid to learn. Same with those beginners, and if you can, learn on a dirt bike first.  If riding street, when you put on your helmet have the attitude that someone is going to try and kill you today so think about what you want protected, wear the best gear, always be scanning traffic, anticipate and keep your guard up.  Unfortunately people in cars and trucks don’t see motorcycles especially with all the new distractions.

What is the longest trip that you’ve taken on your cycle? Not sure. I have gone on many trips that typically are over a week touring Utah, Arizona, California, Europe and off the coast of Africa, so I would say those trips averaged over 1K miles each.  I have about 20 bikes, of which several are modern-street bikes that I have put over 60K miles pleasure in the last 10 years, I don’t commute.

Motorrad MidTest 2013-Marseilles - Motorrad Magazine

Motorrad MidTest 2013-Marseilles – Motorrad Magazine

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? I join the forums to learn about a bike I have an interest in or own. Before I “adopt” a bike I try to learn about it and who are the “go to” people if you need help with it. We never really “own” anything but simply the guardian. So I try to be a responsible owner and take care of the bikes. If you show the bike some love it will give it back tenfold.  So I belong to several forums for example several different Ducati owners forums, R6 owners, most recently Vintage BMW owners club, I have a new interest in those now.

Do you have a favorite riding story? Many. One that the ladies will appreciate happened years ago and does not belong to me but happened to a woman vintage racer I met in England at the Goodwood Revival, Sophie Melcion Smith. She is a very elegant, stylish and beautiful French woman who used to ride her Triumph everywhere in Paris, and did not own a car.

She was a flight attendant and then became a pretty renowned journalist in Europe. She also races vintage bikes in Europe on her Seely Manx G50 and is very fast. It was during one of her races that is every girl’s worst fear happened. She had just found these amazing vintage leathers that fit her like a glove, and she said she felt wonderful in them, like they were custom made, tight in all the right places and very flattering. Which of course makes you go faster 🙂

Anyway it is during her first race with them on that she experiences this sudden gush of cool air in a place there shouldn’t be mid-race. And she realizes that the bottoms had split open exposing her almost completely bare behind, and she was wearing a thong! Now she quickly looks to see who is behind her “behind” and sees a fellow racer approaching as she had let off the gas. So she gasses it full throttle motivated to make sure he didn’t get too close. She podiumed that race. She raced again in them the next day borrowing her boyfriends boxers and some duct tape.

So now when I race I imagine that my suit is split and don’t let the guy behind get too close, quite a motivator 🙂

What do you do when you’re not riding?  I work in the IT industry for income, as well as a part-time commercial rider/model. But I like collecting and learning how to work on my bikes so right now I am building out my “she cave” with some lifts and tools so I don’t have to bug the guys so much.

Bultaco Metralla

Bultaco Metralla

Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Lynnea

I have a new cyber friend for y’all to meet! Her name is Lynnea and she is from upstate South Carolina (I’m already jealous of her because I’m guessing she can ride most of the year). She found my blog and answered my call for lady motorcyclists! Yay!!

Lynnea and her Morini

Lynnea and her Morini

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? 35 years

How did you learn to ride? By the seat of my pants! Just bought a Honda C250T and taught myself–in Boston, no less.

What was your first motorcycle? See above

How many have you owned? At least 11. I currently ride a 1975 Moto Morini which we had restored–I had it repainted to look like a cafe racer from TRON.

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1975 Moto Morini

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? I tried driving my high school boyfriend’s Honda 350 and instantly loved it. I already loved horses and riding, but this was even better!

Tell us about your riding. Pleasure, although racing is still on my bucket list.

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? Take a MSF course first to see how you like it and to get real training.  Then buy a smaller bike to learn on.

What is the longest trip that you’ve taken on your cycle? Indiana to Massachusetts and back.

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? Italian Motorcycle Owners Club of North America, Inc. (IMOC), a club I founded in 1982 in MA. The annual rally draws over 600 bikes and is now the largest all-Italian motorcycle rally of its kind in the country. Yes, I am proud of my baby, and extremely grateful that the current officers have kept it alive and thriving over the years. Also belong to Old Crap Riders! group in Greenville, SC.

Do you have a favorite riding story? Not specifically, but my husband of 28 years, Roland, and I met through mutual motorcycling friends. We have a 25-year old son who is a CPA, and our 19-year old daughter had taken the MSF course. We have met wonderful people over the years and made some great friends.

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What do you do when you’re not riding? I am a corn snake breeder; belong to a Star Trek Club; travel every year overseas (Roland is Swiss); former belly dancer and hand-weaver; love to be with my family and friends.

Profile of a Female Motorcylist: Meet Laurie (LB) a.k.a. @LaurieOnTheBike

I’m so excited to be able to introduce y’all to my new cyber friend Laurie (LB) from southwest Virginia! Laurie says she’s a novice on Twitter a.k.a. @LaurieOnTheBike so let’s welcome her with a follow. And she is a blogger!! Check it out, Life on the Bike and Other Fab Things.

Meet my new cyber friend Laurie!

Meet my new cyber friend Laurie!

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? 4 ½ years

How did you learn to ride? Officially, I took at MSF Class at a local community college, but I have also been mentored by a couple close friends. Meet “My Guys” over on her blog.

What was your first motorcycle? A 1983 Honda Rebel which I bought immediately after taking the MSF class. I rode my “baby bike” for 3 months / 1500 miles before moving on up to my next bike, a 2008 Sportster, 883 L;  I rode my “middle bike” for 3 ½ years / 13,000 before moving on up to my first new bike, built just for me.  My 2013 Softail Slim was such an amazing ride!  6500 miles of pure pleasure … until 4 weeks ago, when I was hit in an intersection.  I always thought that would be my final bike.  I’ll have a new one by spring.

How many have you owned? See above.

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? I rode behind a boyfriend for a year and when that relationship ended, I knew that I had to continue riding. It is the wind in the face, the adventure, the adrenaline rush, the joy and the sigh.  

Tell us about your riding. Commuter, pleasure, vacation, racing, or ?  I primarily ride for pleasure and travel.  I ride with friends and I ride solo.  In fact, each year I take a week long solo trip.  I explore new roads, towns, and states, and I take photos along the way.  My blog is a space for my riding and my photography.  I do commute to work, but not frequently (computer, coffee, lunch bag, purse).  I’m working on it though!

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What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? Take a class and then start with a bike that you feel comfortable with and that will allow you to learn. Buy a used bike, learn to ride, and then ride the heck out of it.  Get comfortable and move on up as you gain experience.

What is the longest trip that you’ve taken on your cycle? 1300 miles in this year’s solo ride to Southern Maryland, Eastern Shore of Maryland, and Delaware.

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups?  I’m a member of HOG, and am a regular rider with a large group of friends.

What do you do when you’re not riding?  I’m a Women’s Health and Family Nurse Practitioner, as well as a Certified Menopause Practitioner; I’m an amateur photographer, have served on my City Council and am very active in civic and volunteer groups.

Copy of IMG_2666

Calling all Female Motorcyclists!

The riding season for me here in Minnesota is pretty much finished. I don’t have the gear to ride in the cold. Hubby and I were not able to do as much riding as we hoped. Looking forward to next year.

You maybe like me and winter is slowly descending upon you. You longingly gaze out at your motorcycle while bundled up in your winter woollies hoping for another sunny 50 degree day when a blast of cold air brings you back to reality. The optimist inside thinks it could happen it is only November. Sigh.

Here she is like a caged beast at the zoo, my Suzy Suzuki 650 VStrom.

Here she is like a caged beast at the zoo, my Suzuki 650 VStrom.

Focus Pam … this is where I turn outward to vicariously “ride” through all the fabulous lady riders I’ve met! And send a call out to meet more! If you are a female motorcyclist and would like to add your story to my series Profile of a Female Motorcyclist shoot me an email at pamela(dot)court(at)gmail(dot)com < trying to keep the spammers at bay!

Your story, your ride, your experience are all unique! We – your fellow female motorcyclists – need to hear your story too. xoxo

Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Michelle a.k.a. @SturgisChick

I have a new friend on Twitter! Her name is Michelle, her family calls her Shelly, and goes by @SturgisChick on Twitter. She was born, raised, and lives in Sturgis, South Dakota. How cool is that?! Well, it gets even cooler … Michelle has a blog too, StrugisChick where she tells stories of her travels, adventures, and experiences. Another must follow.

Michelle near Sturgis, South Dakota on her Harley Fat Boy

Michelle near Sturgis, South Dakota on her Harley Fat Boy

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? Since I was 15 technically but I didn’t get my license until I was 30 and didn’t ride for about 10 years during that gap.

How did you learn to ride? My boyfriend had a Honda XR500 dirt bike that he used on his family’s ranch. He taught me to ride but had to ride on the back with me because I couldn’t touch the ground when we stopped. After about 10 years without riding, I decided to sign up for the Motorcycle Safety Foundation course and start from scratch.

What was your first motorcycle?  The first one I rode regularly was a Kawasaki Sherpa 125,  which I borrowed from a friend. I later borrowed a Sportster from the same friend for a couple of years (I know! How generous is that!). The first bike I owned was a Harley-Davdison Fat Boy with a 1550 which I bought for my 40th birthday.

How many have you owned?  2 – the Fat Boy and my Kawasaki KLR650 which is a dual sport bike.

Bike trip, July 2013

Bike trip, July 2013

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? I was born and raised in Sturgis, South Dakota, home of the world-famous motorcycle rally.  How I could I not get bit by the bug? Although I was a ranch kid I always loved riding 4-wheelers and snowmobiles and eventually learned to ride a motorcycle.

Tell us about your riding. Having the Black Hills to ride just outside your door provides the best curvy roads and beautiful scenery. I love to ride for pleasure after work or on weekends and took my first motorcycle vacation in 2011.

On her way up Independence Pass near Aspen, Colorado last summer

On her way up Independence Pass near Aspen, Colorado last summer

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? ATGATT – All The Gear All The Time.  No exceptions. South Dakota doesn’t have a helmet law which means many of my friends ride with t-shirts and no helmet.  But I’m willing to be a little warm on hot days to be safe and NEVER ride without my gear. [Amen, sister!]

What is the longest trip that you’ve taken on your cycle?  I’m on it now. 8000 miles and counting so far. Left South Dakota to go up through Canada and do the Trans Labrador Highway and then down the east coast of the US.  Planning to head to Mexico and Central America and on to South America.

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? Several online – ADVRider.comHorizons Unlimited and Two Wheel Females and I’m a member of H.O.G. I plan to be active with local clubs (a dual sport riding club and my local H.O.G. chapter) and national groups when I get back home.

Do you have a favorite riding story? Strange as it may sound, it was when I had a wreck on my bike this summer. While riding the Trans Labrador Highway in early July in a remote part of eastern Canada, I came off my bike. It was an awkward fall and I broke my leg and had to be flown several hundred miles from there to have surgery. My boyfriend posted a message on a local forum and received several offers for help including places to stay.  People helped with all sorts of things – storing my bike, hauling my bike, taking me sightseeing while I was on crutches, and providing us with incredible support.  I met some of the most generous people who will be lifelong friends because of that event.  It forced me to let go of my schedule and be open to the entire experience (good and bad), which was one of my goals for this extended trip.  My accident was a life changing experience I wouldn’t trade for anything.

Taken in New Mexico, 2012

Taken in New Mexico, 2012

What do you do when you’re not riding? I was a hotel manager for 21 years and it was a full-time-and-then-some job.  In my spare time I went riding, hiking, gardening, camping and have always loved to travel.

Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Krista

1009854_10151846110861273_1587886099_nI’m so pleased to be able to introduce another lady motorcyclist, Krista a.k.a. Bikermissus from St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada! Krista is also blogs over here, RideNewFoundland. And here’s Krista …

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? Since 2009

How did you learn to ride? When I was probably 23 or so my then-boyfriend had a CBR600. I bugged him to teach me to ride, and I did really well…until I popped the clutch and the front wheel came off the ground. I almost dropped the bike, and gave myself a bit of a fright. The next time I rode a motorcycle was five years later when I did the beginner course. It was a much better experience!

What was your first motorcycle? 2009 Yamaha V-Star 250

How many have you owned? I traded the V-Star on a 2006 Harley-Davidson Sportster 1200 Low, which I still own. I’ve since added a 1997 Yamaha YZF600R and a 2009 Suzuki Vstrom 650 to the garage. The Harley is going up for sale in the spring though. It’s a tough decision but I really don’t need three bikes.

Krista1

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? I’ve loved motorcycles for as long as I can remember, I don’t know why really. Maybe it was an image thing, or it seemed like the epitome of freedom. I always knew that one day I would have a bike. When I went house-hunting in 2008 I would only consider houses that had garages, and I didn’t even know HOW to ride at the time! It was always in the back of my mind.

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Tell us about your riding. As long as the weather is co-operative, I use my bike the way other people use their cars. Commuting, running errands, going to appointments, picking up groceries. On the weekends I like to get out of the city for a day-trip or an overnight visit with family. Since meeting my boyfriend four years ago, we’ve been using our vacation time to tour Newfoundland on our motorcycles, which is absolutely amazing. He’s a bike fanatic too, which is necessary I think.

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? If you have the interest, definitely go do the course. Don’t coerce your boyfriend into teaching you how to ride on his 100 –horsepower sportbike. Don’t let anyone discourage you by saying that you’re too small to handle a bike, don’t have the co-ordination, don’t have the nerve, etc. I’m a small woman, and I can’t even drive a standard car but I’ve ridden big, heavy Harleys and very powerful sportbikes. Once you learn the basics and gain experience, you can ride anything.

When you’re deciding what to get for your first bike, go with your gut. Only YOU know what you’re comfortable on, and if that’s a 250, get a 250. Get a bigger bike when you’re ready, beginner bikes are always an easy sell. Better to start off small and build your confidence than to start off on a bike that’s too big and scare yourself out of riding altogether.

What is the longest trip that you’ve taken on your cycle? Last summer for our vacation we spent 11 days going from St. John’s to St. Anthony (and many side-roads in between!) and back, a distance of about 3000km (1875 miles). It was a truly epic experience, and we’re planning a similar trip for next summer, with some off-pavement thrown in as well since we both own adventure-touring bikes now

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Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? I used to belong to a riding association, but it got political and dramatic so I left. Right now I ride mainly with my boyfriend and our small group of friends. Riding in big groups makesme a little anxious actually.

I’m active in several forums online and in the motorcycle blog community. I love seeing pictures and reading about the rides that people have done all over the world. There are so many people doing amazing things to/with/on motorcycles, I spend my winters reading about them. It’s very inspiring.

Do you have a favorite riding story? Almost every time I head out on the bike for more than an hour I’m left with a story…which is a big part of why I started a blog. Right now my favourite story is our ride to Cape Pine, and the strange coincidences we encountered. Cape Pine is one of the most haunted places I know of, and I’m convinced that  someone or something did not want us to leave. 

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What do you do when you’re not riding? I like to keep fit, and usually run about 50km (30 miles) a week. I’m not really competitive; I usually do only two races each summer. If I wasn’t so into riding I’d probably do more races…they cut into precious weekend riding time! I also love to read non-fiction, and usually have at least two books and two magazines on the go at any given time. To relax on the weekend you can’t beat good beer and good conversation!

A Good Fitting Helmet is Important

This little guy is learning about wearing a helmet even on his four wheeler!

ATGATT at 2!

Four wheeling in the house!

My grandson has recently updated his ride to a Piaggio MP3 250cc scooter and a new helmet! Looks like he needs to grow a bit to fit into both!

Upgrading to a 3 wheel scooter!

Upgrading to a 3 wheel scooter!

Okay, maybe it is his parents that bought the Piaggio MP3 250cc scooter! They picked this up for a song. Needs a few little things, but overall it was a great deal. They sent me a link to JustGottaScoot.com to learn more about this scooter. I’ve never heard or seen a Piaggio before. Check it out!

Piaggio MP3 250cc

Piaggio MP3 250cc

Piaggio MP3 2500cc front view

Piaggio MP3 2500cc front view

Piaggio MP3 250cc twist and go!

Piaggio MP3 250cc twist and go!

Being in marketing, I love a nice logo!

Piaggio logo

Piaggio logo

Have you ever seen or heard about this scooter??

Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Paige aka @Filosoficalfish

Delighted, that is how I felt when my next guest Paige a.k.a. @Filosoficalfish said yes to adding her story here on my blog! She lives in North Vancouver, BC and has a blog, The Philosophical FishOh my it is a must see and follow! Paige has quite a good eye behind the camera. Seriously.

Paige hanging out at the Cheakamus River

Paige hanging out at the Cheakamus River

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? I was on my brother’s dirt bike decades ago, and often rode on the back of his street bike. I had a couple of boyfriends with motorcycles, so I spent a lot of time riding two up. So although I’ve always been around motorcycles, I’ve only been riding my own for about four years now.

How did you learn to ride? I played in the gravel pits out at our cabin on my brother’s dirt bike many years ago, and when we travel abroad we often rent scooters to explore. But my husband encouraged me to get formal training and get my full license, so I took a week long course with the Pacific Riding School in Surrey, BC. Spending so much time on a scooter made learning a bigger bike a cake walk.

Paige on her SV650S

Paige on her SV650S

What was your first motorcycle? Well, if we are splitting hairs, my first motorized two-wheeler was actually an Aprilia SR50 sport scooter, and I still have it. I don’t think I’ll ever get rid of it because it’s just so much fun and so perfect for around the city streets. It’s so easy to maneuver in heavy traffic and drivers don’t have the hate-on for scooters that they do for motorcycles. Win-win! Plus it keeps me on two wheels all year round.

How many have you owned? If you include the Aprilia scooter in the count, I’m on number three now. After a year on the Aprilia I bought a Suzuki SV 650S and rode that for three seasons and put about 25,000 km on it. It was a great bike to learn on, even though I’d really wanted to start on a Ninja 250. The SV taught me a ton and it was such a wonderful torquey ride in the twisties. Nimble and fabulous and we grew together since it had so much to offer.

I traded the SV in for a Ninja Z1000 just a few months ago and already have 8500 km on the new ride. It is a major jump in power and it’s been interesting; a lot more twitchy but we’ve become good friends.

Two of my favourite toys

Two of my favourite toys.

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? I didn’t. It honestly never entered my mind. Scooters were for vacation fun, and I was happy on the back of a motorcycle because we could have conversations while on the road. But getting a motorcycle of my own was a bit of a chain reaction event. I ended up with the scooter because I was trying to buy a new truck and had become frustrated with dishonest dealers. I killed two truck deals and went and bought the fastest and sportiest little 50cc scooter I could find instead. I had it derestricted and put a Leo Vince pipe on it. I can wind that little bike up to over 95 k/hr! My husband started getting misty eyed about missing riding, so I encouraged him to get a new bike. I’d been telling him to get one again, for years. But when he did, the one he chose (a Triumph ST) wasn’t terribly comfortable two-up.

He wanted me to get my Class 6 license “just in case”, so I did, with no intention of ever owning my own, and I’d clearly made that statement when I took my course in a room full of testosterone. Day one on the lot in the course and my instructor, a former supersport champ, just started laughing and pointing at me and said “YOU are sooooo getting a motorcycle!” He’d thrown pylons at my head, buckets of water in my face, and jumped on the back and pulled my helmet around and covered my eyes said he’d never seen anyone keep smiling and laughing the way I did while maintaining focus and total control.

I bought the SV two weeks later. The rest, as they say, is history, and Kirk says his plan worked magnificently.

Ninja at the top of Mt. Baker

Ninja at the top of Mt. Baker

Tell us about your riding. I commute on the scooter, it’s perfect for it. The Ninja is for pleasure and vacation riding. It’s great for a rip up the Sea to Sky or down Chuckanut Drive for fun, and with the luggage kit I now have, it’s perfect for long trips. And sometimes I get to combine the two and use it for work travel too. Can’t beat that!

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? Take a course, have fun, stay calm. Don’t get pressured into anything. You don’t have to feel that you have to keep up to more aggressive riders, or have a bigger bike. Don’t play the numbers game, it doesn’t matter. Riding is an individual thing, even if you are in a group.  Leave the ego behind, you don’t have anything to prove to anyone. And stop over-thinking and planning, just do it. The more you think about doing it, and the more time you spend planning, the more time you waste! Maybe it will be for you, maybe it won’t be, but there is no time like the present to try.

What is the longest trip that you’ve taken on your cycle? We just returned from a nine day trip down the Washington and Oregon coastlines, and then back up through the volcano region. It was a fabulous trip full of challenging roads and incredible scenery. And just four hours after we passed through the North Cascades highway there were eight mudslides closing the road until further notice! We logged 3,456 km by the time the bikes were put to bed.

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? Not really. I’ve never really enjoyed group riding – sometimes the dynamics become too much about egos and that tends to irritate me. So offline, no. Online, I have been active in a group that has been advocating for better motorcycle parking in Vancouver (www.mcarking.ca), but that’s about the extent of things. Mostly I ride solo or with my husband, and occasionally end up with unplanned small groups when I accidentally come across friends on the way.

Do you have a favourite riding story? So many to choose from! But I think my fave was actually on the scoot. I was waiting a a light when a guy on a big cruiser rode up next to me and looked at my scooter and puffed up and said  “Maybe you’ll graduate to one of these one day.” I smiled and said, “Why would I, my scooter gets up to 95km/hr” and costs 4 cents per km to operate. His jaw dropped and he said “That goes THAT fast?!?” I nodded, beat him off the line and left him far behind in the causeway. 🙂

Never dis my little scoot!

Don't dis my scooter!

Never dis my little scoot!

What do you do when you’re not riding? I am so happy to do what I love. I work for the Federal Salmon Enhancement Program in British Columbia as a biologist. I work with the major salmon hatcheries to support rebuilding, conservation, and harvest opportunities for Pacific salmon. I am also involved in fish health education within the SEP program, and teach a few courses in the subject area at the University of British Columbia. Outside of work we are boaters and are switching from power to sail soon. I also love kayaking and downhill skiing, and am a hobby photographer.

Profile of a Female Motorcyclist: Meet Heather a.k.a. @harleygirl122

Hello friends! Hope all is well with y’all. I’ve been busy making lemonade out of the lemons life has been handing me. All is well and life is moving on. Now for some fun. I love sharing stories of lady riders and so excited to have another one to share!

My next guest comes highly recommended by Janet a.k.a. @BikerChickNews and catch her on her blog too, Biker Chick News! Without further ado I’m pleased to introduce Heather a.k.a. @harleygirl122! She does have a blog, but hasn’t been out there in a while.

heather 001

How long have you been riding a motorcycle? Since I was 12 years old.

How did you learn to ride? Trial and error and then riding courses including a course with the police in the UK

What was your first motorcycle? Honda 250

How many have you owned? 10 in total. Mostly Harleys. Now own a 2013 Fat Boy Lo and a 2010 Street Glide Trike.

Why did you want to ride a motorcycle? I always tell people that the itch to ride started when I was 3 years old. My Granddad gave me a little red tricycle and it was my first form of transportation. I went everywhere on my trike. I was brought up in a remote part of Scotland where there were no concerns about kids being out all day and not coming home until dinnertime. From there I went to two wheels and then added a motor. Mostly inspired by my Granddad and the wonderful feeling of freedom and peace that riding on two wheels gave me. It was my independence and now it’s my meditation.

Tell us about your riding. I ride to work every day I can and take long trips across country. I’ve ridden in other countries with friends and any chance I get I will get on a motorcycle to really experience the country I’m in.

What advice do you have for women who ride or want to ride a motorcycle? Don’t give up! Take a course like Rider’s Edge and find a good dealer or female rider to support you. If people are honest it’s tough at the beginning. When I got my first Harley in the late nineties when I moved to the US I was the only women rider the dealer had dealt with. I was an anomaly and I was teased mercilessly but also well supported by the guys. They took me under their wing and many of them are really great friends today. But getting your confidence and going at your own pace is really important. Don’t outstretch yourself. Make sure you are comfortable on the bike. Take your time and don’t go too big too soon.

What is the longest trip that you have taken on your cycle? 5000 mile trip across the country to the Grand Canyon. Life-changing in so many ways.

Do you belong to any motorcycle groups? HOG and my friends and I formed a group called the IRG which was our answer to all the crazy clubs around that had rules, officers, dues and the like. We just wanted to ride..and not just bar to bar. So as a joke we formed the IRG and we had people at rallies coming up to us asking if they could join 🙂

Do you have a favorite riding story? Our trip to the Grand Canyon was so incredible and I still talk about it even though it was a couple of years ago. As we stood on the rim of the Grand Canyon to watch the sunrise having gotten up around 3am to ride up there…there was not a dry eye in the house. a bunch of leather clad bikers who were not only speechless but also highly emotional. Such a magnificent sight and one I will never forget.

What do you do when you’re not riding? I love spending time with my furry children Rufus and Hemi.