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The Shark And The Bat

In the world of American made touring bikes, the battle for fairing dominance often comes down to personal taste (look and feel) over performance. I must admit, when initially shopping for my first bagger I was drawn to the look of the batwing fairing on the Harley Davidson Street Glide. The idea of cruising behind a set of 12” bars with my feet up on highway pegs just felt right in my mind. So in September 2017, I made that dream a reality and picked up a 2014 Street Glide.

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Return of the Wild Rose Squad

Nothing keeps the Wild Rose Squad from Canada. Undeterred by attempts ruined with rain, terrible traffic or broke down bikes, this smaller, quicker offshoot of the Wenatchee, Washington based Mild Hogs touring group always returns. Despite life’s determined pull to keep us shackled to our daily drudgery, we break free and head north during this same time window each year.

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Struck By A Meteor

An admission up front- as much as I’ve been looking forward to sampling this brand new offering from Royal Enfield, I didn’t have high expectations. Heck, it’s a single thumper 349cc for Pete's sake, making all of 20 horses to the rear wheel, and would be the smallest street bike I’ve ever ridden. I planned to ride it mildly, and report on it as the small displacement stepping-stone bike to their 650cc Twins that I perceived it would be. Talk about mistaken first impressions!

Revisiting Why We Ride

The other night, while the wife was working on some budget stuff, I was thumbing through our DVD collection while cleaning up a shelf. The movie “Why We Ride” caught my eye, and I decided to pop it in while I worked, since I’d not viewed the documentary in several years. Soon I was transfixed, seated on the floor, gazing at the beautiful scenes of riding, soaking in the stories and testimonies of motorcycle riders, racers, builders and adventurers. I’d intended to merely click though various scene selections, but instead found myself captured again by the movie and the people in it, watching it from start to finish. From road trips to racing, asphalt to dirt, senior adults to children, the sheer love of riding the movie displays across all lines was palpable. By the end, I was in tears, so thankful I’m able to experience the joy of two wheels and a motor. Lisa, a non-rider, had slipped in near the end, and as I sat through the credits where each person interviewed for the movie was identified, she remarked, “That was really good.” Yes dear, it was, and is.

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God Sent Us Road Baloney

“There are two things I can’t stand doing slow,” Mots softly says, “skiing and riding motorcycles.”
Having done both with him, I can attest that he is slow at neither. Mots was my speedy riding partner that day as he ran point, carefully dissecting eastern Washington’s rolling farm country with scenic cuts through green fields, red barns and brown cattle.

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Skool of Moto

It’s Independence Day, a Saturday, and students are in school. But the four students attending summer school were not lackluster performers or behavior problems, nor are they being forced to attend against their will.
Quite the opposite. They paid to come here, some traveling thousands of miles to attend. Even more unusual, the curriculum at this school involves clutch control, lofting the front wheel and monkey lifts. All of them, including the instructor and her support staff, are female.
Welcome to Skool of Moto.

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Riding The Upper Left- A Photo Album

Recently, Road Dirt’s owner, senior editor, chief cook and bottle washer Rob Brooks flew 3,000 miles from his Georgia home to Wenatchee, Washington to join me and eight others on our annual seven day, 1,500+ mile tour of the upper left. I promised him blue Pacific Northwest skies, great food and a memorable experience. One out of three isn’t bad.

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