Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Quick epilog item....

The local newspaper in NE Oregon published quite an article about my ride. You can read it by clicking HERE

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Days 13-15 At Hodaka Days in Athena, OR

As I write this Sunday afternoon, Hodaka Days 2011 is coming to an end. I wanted, however, to share more of the sights, sounds, and feels of this year's event. Hodaka Days may just be the neatest little motorcycling event you never heard of.

Hodaka days offers a wide variety of events or you can just hang out in Athena's lovely, little, clean municipal park.

The day preceding official start offers a poker run for all comers. Then on the opening day there is the very popular trail ride. Restricted to 80 riders, the event fills up quickly.

Then there is the Bike show.


With entry approaching 100 bikes, here is where you can take a good look at all the years, and all the models of Hodakas.




For those with a more competitive instinct there are events like the observed trials.


And for those with a more "wheel-to-wheel" inclination there is a full slate or Scrambles Sunday morning on a course set up in the Athena Downtown.



Of course there are also those hardy perennials of outings like this, such as delicious food.

Athena cuisine. Right up my alley!

And a swap meet.


A highlight for me was the annual Hodaka Parade which goes down Main Street in Athena on Saturday morning. It was important for me in a couple of ways. At some level the whole idea for this trip originated after having watched the parade two years ago and thinking "It would be neat to ride an old Hodaka that I restored in the parade" and, perhaps more importantly, they named me the Grand Marshall" of the parade this year in recognition of my ride from Pennsylvania. Got to ride right in the front!!! Sweet!



But now it's all over for another year and I guess that's kinda where my adventure story ends too. I'm in a hotel in Wala Walla, WA tonight. Tomorrow I fly to Seattle during the day then hop on a redeye for home in Philadelphia tomorrow evening. Geez, another long travel day. But not near so much fun as recent days! My bike is in my friend Paul Stannard's trailer and will be headed East at first light tomorrow.


The mileage logged during the entire trip ended up as 2908, including the 2858 miles enroute to Athena and another 50 miles locally. I saw incredible sights, met fascinating people, I had just about enough difficulty to remind me what a thin thread I was hanging on for this entire trip, and in just 2 weeks accumulated enough memories to last for a long time! And I did it all in the seat of a 34 year old, two-stroke motorcycle with an engine smaller than that in my lawn mower!

I owe a serious "Thank You" to all my supporters and everyone who followed here. Without your help , and the encouragement that you provide things like this just simply cannot happen.

Thanks too, to the Board, Officers, and Members of the Hodaka Club who embraced my whole trip welcomed me into their community. On the last day they even awarded me a special honor. I will be proud to wear this!




As always, I must also offer profuse thanks to my wife Lisa, who puts up with so much and whom I love dearly!

Thaks for following. Until next time, ride safe!

Just a reminder that there are always more pictures on my Smugmug Photo Share. To check 'em out CLICK HERE

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Sincere thanks to our supporters including Giant Loop Moto, REV’IT, Strictly Hodaka, Bell Helmets, Martin Motorsports.









Thursday, June 23, 2011

Day 12 - Hodaka Days 2011

Not a whole lot to report compared to the past few days. Just a day of hanging out at Athena's Community Park and enjoying the sights and sounds of all the Hodakas arriving from everywhere. Restorations, customs, race bikes...they're all here. Just enjoy, as I did. A very relaxing day after all that has happened since June 12.





Just a reminder that there are always more pictures on my Smugmug Photo Share. To check 'em out CLICK HERE

Two Strokes Across America is powered by RevZilla.com
Sincere thanks to our supporters including Giant Loop Moto, REV’IT, Strictly Hodaka, Bell Helmets, Martin Motorsports.









Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day 11 - Lewiston, Idaho to Athena, Oregon DID IT!

Today started out much like the others but with a very important difference. If I could eke out just another paltry 124 miles, I would complete my journey to Athena, Oregon. A restless night was followed by a very early wake up. At about 4:30 I could no longer sleep, what with visions of all the possible things that could still go wrong dancing about in my mind. There was, however, little I could do save get to it!

I started with a few maintenance items on the bike then hit the road. I was, yet again, following US 12 and spending quality time with my now good friends Mr. Lewis and Mr. Clark.


The terrain had changed a great deal from the majesty of the mountainscapes of the past two days. Now I was passing through the rolling hills of SE Washington, and later in the morning NE Oregon.


Just about a hundred miles took me to Walla Walla, WA where I made a turn to the South (so long Lewis and Clark!) toward my final destination. A further 25 miles or so landed me in Athena.


First stop was downtown for a cup of java and to just decompress for a half hour or so.


Then it was off to the local park which is the site of Hodaka Days, my main reason for coming here. Hodaka Days is an annual reunion event for the long defunct motorcycle brand that was based here in Athena. Hundreds of enthusiasts and hundreds of bikes, all ring-a-dinging their way around town for 4 days.


Hodaka Days 2011 doesn't officially start until tomorrow, Thursday, June 23. I'm overnighting in my hotel in nearby Pendleton, OR. and will head back to the event sometime tomorrow afternoon. Earlier this afternoon I did a lengthy interview with a reporter from the local newspaper and a short time ago they sent out a photographer to capture my smiling face and my trusty steed. Friday's publication, so I'm told. Anyway, what I most need is uninterrupted sleep. I plan to sleep in tomorrow, do the badly need laundry, and even begin working out the details of how I will get home. Remember, the bike is coming home in a truck. Ride it home? I may be nuts, but I'm not crazy!

I'll be posting throughout Hodaka Days (till Sunday) so don't bail out quite yet. Several more days of pictures and stories are still coming! Gonna go collapse now. Thanks for being with me throughout the ride!

Just a reminder that there are always more pictures on my Smugmug Photo Share. To check 'em out CLICK HERE

Two Strokes Across America is powered by RevZilla.com
Sincere thanks to our supporters including Giant Loop Moto, REV’IT, Strictly Hodaka, Bell Helmets, Martin Motorsports.









Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Day 10 - Helena, MT to Lewiston, ID

Today may just have been the best day of the trip. What can one ask for? Good Weather? Check. Bright and sunny (and warm, at least in the afternoon.) High miles? Check. 357 miles today. Second biggest day of the entire trip. Trouble free bike? Check. The repairs from yesterday must have held up well. The Hodaka was flawless today. Great Roads to Ride? Check. US Route 12 across the Lolo Pass and into Idaho is on virtually every "great riding roads" list. See what I mean ? Today had it all. To top it all off it was my birthday too. 39. Again.

When I left Helena this morning it was the coldest departure yet. 46 degrees. Throughout this adventure I've tried to keep a certain level of "period correctness". Witness the Bell Custom 500 open face helmet, jeans as riding pants, the bike itself, and 70s music references etc. Well this morning, realizing that it was colder than I was really prepared for I did exactly what I would have done when I was in college (NOBODY had any real riding gear then!) I stuffed newspaper under my jacket! Any you know what? It worked quite well. Some things never change.

Extra insulation was important first thing this morning because when you leave Helena,headed westward on US Route 12, you immediately begin an upward climb toward MacDonald Pass which, at 6300 feet is the highest pass along my route. Not only did bike performance suffer at altitude, the temperature got even colder than the balmy 46 in Helena. But this too passed and soon I was winging my way toward Missoula.

Once past Missoula came the highlight of today's ride. The Lolo Pass and the 100 miles or so of twisties that follow immediately afterward and upon entering Idaho.


Lolo Pass is on virtually every list of great riding roads. From the actual Pass going Westward the road basically follows the Lochsa River through the Bitterroot Range. Stunning vistas are around every corner.




Eventually though, all good things have to come to an end and some 100 miles later we find ourselves back down to 1200 feet elevation in the little burg of Lowell.


From there it was a short additional ride to my overnight digs here in Lewiston, here on the Idaho side of the border with Washington.

Throughout the last few days I am constantly reminded (as a card carrying "Easterner") that things are a bit different here in the West I offer a couple of pieces of evidence of the same.





So now I find myself 2700+ miles from home and only 124 miles from my destination of Athena, Oregon. The Hodaka Days Reunion event doesn't officially begin until Thursday but I think what I'll do is ride on over there tomorrow. I can nose around a bit as they set up the event then head for my hotel/home for the next 3 days in Pendleton, OR (Woolens anyone?) which is only about 20 miles away. Then I'll kinda "officially" arrive on Thursday. I can't believe this is so close to being over. What an adventure. Stick around for another day or two though as you can never predict what might happen. Thanks again to you all!

Just a reminder that there are always more pictures on my Smugmug Photo Share. To check 'em out CLICK HERE

Two Strokes Across America is powered by RevZilla.com
Sincere thanks to our supporters including Giant Loop Moto, REV’IT, Strictly Hodaka, Bell Helmets, Martin Motorsports.