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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #1  
Old 16 Mar 2006
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What is your one best two wheeled memory?

Greetings all two wheeled travelheads!

I'm a columnist for Motorcycle Mojo Magazine and I would like to share your one best memory of two wheels with our readers. You know the one, the one that makes you scrap four wheels, pitch the daily grind and see the world the way the world should be seen...I go to press soon so don't be shy!

Cheers!
Stu Seaton
Motorcycle Mojo
stuseaton@sprint.ca
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  #2  
Old 16 Mar 2006
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Stu,

I don't think it's actually like that.

The bike is certainly a part of it, as your chosen mode of transportation, but the reason for travel is not the bike itself.

We're are different in our personal motivations, so others may be able to offer something within the parameters you've set.

You're looking for something interesting to excite your readers, of course. It's much more involved than just 2 wheels and a great moment.

Maybe why you chose 2 wheels?

[This message has been edited by Lone Rider (edited 16 March 2006).]
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  #3  
Old 16 Mar 2006
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Lone Rider, Thanks, I think you're right. I'll re-phrase. Simple question: Why two wheels? What is it about being "on" instead of "in" something that sparks such passion? Being in a 5* crash rated box makes much more sense, climate control at the touch of a button is nicer than sporting that wet dog smell...

Cheers,
Stu
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  #4  
Old 16 Mar 2006
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This is nowhere near answering your question but it appears much more pratical for me to ride around the world than drive. Shipping a motorbike between London & New York, Panama & Venezuela, Chile & Sydney and finally Australia & Singapore appears easier and cheaper in the short term than driving.

Just my two thoughts although not the entire reason for taking the bike. IN a nut shell, couldnt imagine doing this trip on any other mode of transport.
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Old 17 Mar 2006
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Thanks Paul, as an avid motorcyclist I can agree, but there must be something YOU see as an advantage when you're sitting next to a mini van at a stop light, or cutting a fine line through a mountain pass... Why two wheels?

Stu
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  #6  
Old 17 Mar 2006
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When I pull up beside a cage I often think.
There is a person that is taking their own little world with them! I get wet when it rains, cold when it is cold, and hot when it is hot, I feel the weather. I smell the flowers, fields, and trees when I go buy them. They only have the temp and smell of their world.
When I stop for gas people don't hesitate to come and talk to me about my trip. Where I am going, where I am from, what it is like to travel on a bike. Other bikers will always come over and talk about the road and area, good things to see, with you. When you are in a cage, it is you and them, and not much between.
When I am on the bike all my senses are awake, and aware of what is around me, the smell, the sounds, the cool wind from the water, the hot wind from the black field. I feel the area that I am going threw. In the cage all the senses are dead.
And as you know this is only part of it!
Norm

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Namron '04 F650GSA, '03 Yamaha Venture, Calgary, Alberta Canada.
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  #7  
Old 17 Mar 2006
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See this thread:
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000497.html



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Old 17 Mar 2006
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Moving this thread from North America - since it REALLY doesn't fit there. So it goes in the "don't fit anywhere else" forum!

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Grant Johnson

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  #9  
Old 18 Mar 2006
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I agree with all the other comments and would add:

It feels more adventurous because you can cover so much distance and see so many things with such a small vehicle, and because of the smaller amount of supplies you have to get by with on a bike.

It is more fun. Everything from riding through twisties on perfect pavement, to cruising down an interstate in heavy traffic at 80mph, to zipping down a dirt path, to splashing through a creak crossing.... What other vehicle is so much fun in such a wide variety of circumstances?

It can take you more places. The bike can go on highways with the same speed as a cage, but it can also go down a narrow dirt path, can be lifted over, under, or around obstacles that would stop a cage, and can be hoisted onto boats or trucks that could not carry a cage. It offers more freedom. I guess this goes along too with Paul's point of it being more practical to ship overseas.

It is more challenging to ride a bike than drive a cage. Overcoming the challenge is part of what keeps the traveling more interesting. Unusual climate, weather, traffic, and road conditions may add to the challenge on a bike, but even without those factors, riding a bike is more mentally challenging. You have to get on the throttle at moments when going faster really doesn't feel like the right thing to do. You have to balance the front/rear brakes on various surfaces, balance the throttle just right when you're leaned over in a turn, balance carefully around super slow and tight corners off-road, and try not to fall over in the big sand or mud pit. Riding the bike requires so much of your mental abilities most of the time that there is no way your head will be cluttered with any other thoughts! Satori! I think I would get so bored traveling around in a cage, although I do realize there are some places to go with a 4wd that would be very challenging.

When I drive a cage long distance, I feel groggy at the end of the day, as if I've been sitting around all day. I often get sleepy while driving a cage even though it is early in the day and I've had plenty of sleep. When I ride a bike long distance, I always feel alert, even if I haven't slept so well, except perhaps if I'm badly dehydrated. At the end of a good day of riding, I feel physically exhausted but peaceful and relaxed, like I've just had a lot of exercise but didn't over do it!

There's so many things! I can read responses to this and the other thread Grant pointed out, and see so many other ideas that I agree with but didn't even think of or consciously realize myself. For those who don't get it, they never will, but it is nice to stop and think about what specificaly attracts me to bikes so much. It helps you realize why you're doing what you're doing when you're riding along in below freezing temps. To me it's not about trying to convince the nay sayers. You get it or you don't. Some people go through life and they just want it to be comfortable and easy. Others want some action and adventure. Not all those who seek action and adventure end up riding bikes, but they don't require much if any explanation to understand why you're doing it.
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  #10  
Old 18 Mar 2006
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There's something about sitting astride a mighty machine which in its essence is simply an engine and two wheels united by a frame. From the instant you kick the stand away, select a gear and take off from a standstill, you can feel it, as the clutch is let out, perfectly balanced by a twist of the wrist on the throttle hand. The left always knows what the right is doing and the machine is an extension of yourself. Every small movement, every shift of body weight, elicits a response in the bike and any bump, camber or irregularity in the road surface is similarly transmitted through the bike to the rider.

There can be few things comparable to riding a two wheeled vehicle with a light touch on the controls, the wind in your face and knees gripping the tank, inches away from valves which flutter like the heartbeat of a nervous animal. Piloting a motorcycle requires skill, coordination, restraint. It requires prescience when approaching a corner, an instinctive reckoning of the physics involved; the line, the length, the friction coefficient.

There is a breathless kind of feeling somewhere in the bottom of your chest when, midway through a corner and leaning with the bike, your vertebrate are compressed by centripetal forces. This feeling is enhanced when, with a certain tilt of the head and eyes fixed on the exit to the bend, the machine rises to meet you, steering itself, as if by intuition, in a graceful curve towards the very spot to which your gaze is pinned. Then, straightening both body and bike in unison, you power out of the bend and down the road like the arrow released from the bow.
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  #11  
Old 19 Mar 2006
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Thanks Folks, beautiful responses that will be a pleasure to use. I sure would like to hear from the ladies on two wheels as well!

Cheers!
Stu
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