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The Writing On The Wall

Our life is but a blip in the expanse of time and tomorrow is guaranteed to no one.  Money, fame, and millions of Facebook or Instagram followers will not buy anyone an extra day.  God decides that.  It made me reflect on how I would end the sentence on the board.  If I had the chalk, what would I write?  Years after taking the picture, I know the answer.

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In My Blood

Motorcycles are in my blood, in my DNA. I’ve seen them under a microscope, floating in my blood stream, riding the highways and byways of my veins and arteries. Microscopic sport bikes, cruisers, old classics, inherited from my mother and father, racing through my circulatory system, dodging in and out of the red cell traffic, avoiding the white cell cops. I was born to ride.

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Chasing George Wyman: Great Lakes to New York

It was at this point that I had a strange realization of the scale of the North American continent. Up until now, I had been putting in 500 to 800 mile days and the vastness of the mountain ranges, deserts, and plains had made a mere hundred miles feel like nothing but a short jaunt. Now, however, riding from Chicago to Goshen (a trip I had made many times), I realized just how far a hundred miles is, even when traveling in a car!

Dunlop Roadsmart IV vs. Michelin Road 6: Dry Handling Comparison

For the second year in a row, Road Dirt will be pitting two tire giants against each other in a head-to-head battle for sport touring tire supremacy. Last year, Dunlop’s Roadsmart IV easily won the test over Pirelli’s Angel GT with better dry handling, equal wet weather grip, better long term handling and a shocking 70% more tire life. Conversations with riders and comments from both of my readers asked about Michelins touring giant, the Road 6. So once again, I twisted the arm of my touring companion Dave “White Girl” Wensveen and convinced him to join me for another summer of testing.

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Aaron’s Story

I was swinging on our front porch with my wife the other night, the sun having set behind the tree line, and the woods around our North Georgia home were awash in the glow of dozens of fireflies. It’s late spring, and I suddenly found myself reflecting on a treasured friendship with an old adolescent pal named Aaron Smith. I’m not sure what triggered the memories, but I lingered there in the gathering dusk, even as Lisa excused herself and stepped inside. I bid welcome to the images, conversations, and shared experiences with my old friend, allowing them to fill my consciousness. I sat and savored, like watching a great old movie I’d seen before, but worth the viewing again and again.

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Kawasaki’s Killer Modern Retro Lineup

Its no secret at Road Dirt- we love classic motorcycles. Sure, sport bikes are thrilling, ADVs are fun in the dirt, and cruisers/tourers are the way to travel. But there’s something nostalgic about old motorcycles that still rev our hearts, and we always gravitate toward “modern classics” when brands design and offer them. Heck, I love my 2017 Triumph Bonneville 900 Street Cup, and when our friend Steven Kent of Law Tigers bought a 2018 Z900RS, we had to spend a day chasing each other around Georgia Lake Country on our retro-cool, slightly-larger-than middleweights.

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Wayward Sons

Close your eyes and visualize Oregon. What does your mind see? Picturesque lighthouses standing watch on jagged coastlines? Liberal urbanites of Portland? Westward expansion along the Oregon Trail? Tall timber forests full of battling loggers and protesters?No matter what your mind’s eye sees, you are both right and wrong. True, Oregon is all of those things but there is, as Paul Harvey used to say, the rest of the story.

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Goodbye Dale, And Thank You

I got word that Dale Walksler, the founder and president of the wonderful Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley, Tennessee, passed away after a lengthy battle with cancer. Dale was 69 years old. The news struck me hard, as several of us Road Dirt guys were just up there back in September, touring this famous museum of American motorcycling. I’ve visited the museum 5-6 times since they first opened in 2002, and have always marveled at not only the vast collection of American motorcycle history they have amassed, but how every bike in the collection actually runs. Yet best of all was Dale’s personal touch. Until his health prevented it, Dale was often out on the floor, meeting patrons and discussing bikes, history, great rides and fond memories, a precedent the rest of their staff continues to practice. Wheels Through Time truly is, “The Museum That Runs.”

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Dunlop Roadsmart IV vs Michelin Road 6: Wet Handling Test

Yet if you ride in the Pacific Northwest then you know that into every ride a little rain must fall.  Just not this year.  We rode through most of the West anticipating that somewhere, somehow, we would find nature’s rain for the highly anticipated wet weather tire test of Dunlop’s Roadsmart IV vs Michelin’s Road 6, our participants in year two of our tire shootout series.  Instead we found heat, snow, even a biblical plague of grasshoppers but not a single drop of rain.  So to answer the question that both of my readers have been asking, we traversed thousands of miles to some of the best riding in the country, the place where it rains every afternoon: Colorado.

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BSA Motorcycles Debuts 2022 Gold Star 650

Finally, the wait is over. About this time last year, we wrote about the news that Mahindra Group in India had bought the rights to the BSA brand, and would be producing them in the UK. They just pulled the wraps off their debut model a day ahead of “Motorcycle Live 2021” in England. BSA sneak-previewed their all-new Gold Star 650 at England’s National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham before the Motorcycle Live event at the NEC, the first in a series of motorcycles the brand plans to bring to market in the coming year(s).

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