Friday, July 18, 2014

Into The Urban

 Many riders head for the hills, familiar destinations and open spaces. However, the life of a city mouse can be very interesting. When wondering around the city on two wheels, you never know where you'll end up. The only wrong turns are those of habit. It's amazing how much we have to explore in The Urban, if you're open to it.


It's 8:30 on a Thursday evening. The Boy is sleeping. The house is picked up. Annie mentions something about wanting the latest gossip mag and my ears perk up, I'm just the man for the job. On this particular Thursday evening there just happens to be a grocery store and a bike show in close proximity to each other. Time to fire up the bike.

Pictures from a previous event to give you a feel for the crowd.

Blue Cat Motors puts on a monthly bike show-customer appreciation- ride in event. Today's bike night featured a taco truck and brass band! The bikes and bikers never dissapoint, good people who love motorcycles. I didn't stay long, just a quick lap around the lot to see what folks are working on and I was out of there. It was such a nice night, I couldn't bring myself to leave the bike on its side stand for too long.

the SOHC CB is the Japanese  Norton

 an XS650 meets FZR suspension.

I know a fast way to the store, remember I'm running an errand. To complete my task I decided to go in the opposite direction. There's an industrial section of town where the streets are empty and the views of the setting sun over the rail yards are distracting.

A mural by FM on University Ave.

Great big empty streets, old buildings and tiny corner bars had completely reset my clock. The springs were unwound and the hands could care less about the expectations of others. I thought about stopping in for a beer but I am just a tourist and it wouldn't be the same. I did stop eventually to photograph a mural and an old rail car.

The store was still open when I arrived and a gossip mag was purchased. I even got home before its audience fell asleep on the couch.  

the Mississippi River in St Paul

the Minneapolis Public Art Map

Looking for an excuse to ride? Check out the Minneapolis Public Art Map

Ole, a world famous Norwegian violinist from the 1800s, was the first public sculpture commissioned by the City of Minneapolis in 1895. 

the Courtship of Lena

Maps: You've got to know when to hold them, know when to fold them... and when to run.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

the Lake Superior Circle Tour

Follow Jeff and Mike on their trip around the Gichigami.

Duluth looking East into Wisconsin
I'm putting together some "required reading" for the sidebar. This would fall into that category.


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

I've called it many things over the years.

I guess I'm feeling the need for a fast bike on the open road, and time. Lots of time with no commitments.

In a former life I rode a Moto Guzzi.

That sounds a little too passive, there's nothing passive about riding and maintaining a V11 sport with Italian aftermarket exhaust. The dealer knew what he was doing when he let me take it for a test ride, I wrote the check the second I got back.

I'm not one to name my bikes although I've called it many things over the years. Mostly it's known to my friends and I as the Goose, freaking awesome, or purdy. Much post-ride time has been dedicated to staring at it and grinning. In my seven years of ownership and 40k miles it has never left me stranded, although it pays to be a problem solver.


more curves (Wabasha, MN)

the annual Wisconsin Dells spring ride

Marathon, Ontario


new clutch time!

spring in Minnesota: 50 and sunny with 2 feet of snow

Finland... Minnesota

A snowmobile trail in Michigan's Upper Peninsula
out with the new, in with the old

There must be some magic location, time and displacement triangle. Keeping these things in harmony has helped me get the most out of my riding. In 2012, my time was getting shorter and my location more metropolitan. The Guzzi's love of the open road was upsetting the balance.

I've never regretted my decision buy this quirky Italian motorcycle or my decision to downsize.