Friday, February 19, 2016

Quick. Top five riding essentials.

I stumbled on a little blog challenge from Gary at Files In Your Teeth via Torbairitz.

Gary asks: "What are five things you cannot ride without?" I threw my must haves in the comments and thought a re-post was in order.

  1. For the bike: Tire repair kit with plugs and CO2 filler. Enough to get me to a gas station a shop.
  2. Wear: High-viz jacket. What can I say, I’m a convert. I notice an immediate difference when I wear my non-highlighter yellow mesh jacket. Not just occasionally, but every time is switch. (I ride mostly in city traffic) That and bicycle shorts, the padded spandex ones.
  3. Tech: My phone, more specifically I love GPS Essentials for Android. It’s an old-school GPS “simulator” and gives me all the control I want. I should note that I make maps for a living, yep you can get paid to do that. Post: Making maps with smart phones. 
  4. Essentials: Water. A Camelback type system works great and can be worn under or over your jacket depending on your flappy strap threshold.
  5. Luxury item: Cycle Shade, it keeps the dew off your seat in the morning so you don’t have to head out with a wet ass. 

- Ride North

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Wild and Scenic (rivers) Film Festival - March 22nd

For those of you in the neighborhood, UW - River Falls is hosting the St. Croix Summit, a two day conference that will be capped off with the Wild and Scenic (rivers) Film Festival at Juniors Bar and Restaurant. Film fest tickets are ten bucks and can be purchased here.  You'll need to register for the conference and purchase just the film fest ticket. 

Wild and Scenic Film Fest
March 22nd
6:00 PM
Junior's Bar, River Falls, WI

Friday, February 12, 2016

Road dogs

The Progressive (TM) International Motorcycle Show offers an annual explosion of motorcycles in the otherwise dull winter riding season, an opportunity to shamelessly fondle the new bikes. For those of us whose dog drool has slowed to a skeptical drip, Progressive offers a ton of additional entertainment for folks of all ages; who doesn’t love motorcycle themed slot car tracks?

Small and mid-sized bikes really turn my wheels and the manufactures have been steadily improving their line ups. The progression myth dictates we start on something small and upgrade to bigger, because bigger is better. I rode this wave, to a point, but in the end a day on the Wing is not the same adventure as a day on a 500. And the 500 is way more accessible, in all aspects, than a 1500 (or whatever size they are now).  I’ll stop bagger bashing now, there are few things more pleasant than a Road King on a sunny day.

It’s interesting how the different brands handle their mid-sized models, Guzzi’s V7 Stone is unashamedly a stepping off point while Yamaha invited RSD to polish their gem into a precious stone. Honda’s CB500 lineup overflows with potential for the hard-code small bike enthusiast. And there’s no denying that Enfield’s Continental GT, at 75 MPG, is the shiniest toy in the toy box.

the GT is the real deal: Harris frame. Brembo brake.

The Africa Twin did not disappoint.
Honda can be sneaky with their new models,
did you know they have a V4 adventure bike?

The MV Agusta Dragster wins the most-beautiful-wheel-on-a-production-bike-ever award.

I wish I had more information on this BMW, every one-off piece
from the Weber carb to the shift lever is worthy of it's own rotating stand.
I'm sure it will turn up on that bike.exif site, if it hasn't already. 

Because Guzzi. (say it like "pizza")
Our crew was a little lighter than normal this year, the intrusion of responsibility being as it is, just a father-son duo. We hit up a few ethnic joints, the Dubliner on Friday night and Britt’s Pub for meat pies and a pint after the show. I’m very fortunate to share this “hobby” with my old man. The guiding hand of a fatherhood is always present, but when we get talking about bikes we often meet  on a level track. I think next year we’ll take the boys. 

(All the grand kids are boys. If they were girls, their motorcycling would be strictly restricted to the front seat.)


-  -  Ride North

Fargo sun dogs.