Look in the Blog Archive in the box to the right for past ride reports going back to 2006. New material posted as rides or other motorcycle news occurs. Thanks for reading. Comments always welcome, be sure to log in below. Comments will be reviewed. Please note the disclaimer below.

About Me

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Motorcycling has been a life changing experience. I hope sharing the info and pictures on the Blog gives you some idea how impressed I am with the experience, travel and the people I have met. Made new friends especially among Riders here in Orange County. Special recognition to Johney (Wrench)-helps with all the maintenance stuff+rides, plus other great riding friends: Ken Y., Luis V. & Minita, Chuck & Patty, John R., Joe, Carolyn, Gregg, Charlie & Carol, Rick, Stan P., Ed & Susan P., Barry, plus Terry, Bob B., Brian H., Glenn, William & Daveta Jo, Bob (Concho) and others. ************* DISCLAIMER: This is my personal write-up (Blog) of motorcycling news, rides and events that I am involved with in some way and not affiliated with any group, organization or club that might be mentioned herein. There should be no confusion regarding the fact these are my personal comments and not those of any other entity.

Amazing scenery, great ride, wonderful time.

Amazing scenery, great ride, wonderful time.
Monument Valley, Utah-9/2011 photo by Johney Harper!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Patriot Guard Mission-Camp Pendelton

My second Patriot Guard mission and it was a difficult one, but they all are actually.  Brian J. Pedro SPC U.S. ARMY, KIA Afghanistan 2010 age 27, that's all we knew but an opportunity to help support the family on a very emotionally trying day, meeting their son for the last time.  The "Dog Tag" above is prepared by the group for riders that want to have a rememberance of the service person the mission is for. 

Five members of our STAR chapter met with about 60 other riders from Patriot Guard, American Legion, Harley groups and others to help pay tribute to a fallen hero returning to his family.  Our group consisted of Johney, Stan, Chuck, John R. and me to join with the group and ride into Camp Pendelton Marine Air base in Oceanside to meet the arriving plane.  This was the first time I had ever been on The Marine base and it is huge, even though I saw only a tiny portion.

The reception on base was amazing.  We rode in a column of twos with the flags flying on the leading motorcycles, then the rest of us plus a few trikes and couple of vehicles bringing up the rear.  After the arrival and paying tribute we all left the same way we came in, but this time following the family and hearse.  We had a full police escort of police cars and police motorcycles blocking traffic with nearly all the traffic pulling over to the side of the road as we passed.  Officers handling traffic duty at the lights all stood at attention, saluting as we passed them by.  It was a reallly unique experience for me.

The actually rendering of tribute at the planes arrival and the family seeing the casket for the first time was beyond heart wrenching and I doubt there was a dry eye in the assembled group of riders or military personnel in attendance.

Pictures are at the staging area near the base entrance:

We all lined up and rode into the base, parked and then went onto the airfield to await  arrival of the plane.

Arriving home

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Welcome home PFC Anthony (AJ) Boswell USA

Welcome home PFC Anthony (AJ) Boswell USA Santa Ana CA 11 Oct 10.  Courtney our "cookie girl" at Wednesday Flag ceremony is meeting her brother returning from duty in Iraq and it is an excellent chance to honor his service to our country and also a tribute to Courtney and thank her for being at nearly every Wednesday with cookies for everyone.   

A surprising number of patriot Guard, American Legion, Star and other riders showed up at the staging area near John Wayne Airport, I estimated approximately 50-60 motorcycles plus a few trikes and vehicles.  Very impressive and an opportunity to give a well deserved thank you to the Boswell family. 

We met at a Mc Donald's around the corner from the airport, had a briefing and some introductions, including a couple from England riding around the country and rode in from Victorville to be here with some other Harley riders.  The ride to the airport was impressive with all the flags and motorcycles plus we even had an escort to fly through the lights.  The escort is one member that has a police looking motorcycle and even dresses like the escorts for funerals, people stopped anyway.

  Here's Mark with his Harley and Stan on the right helping to hold it up.

 For some of the guys from the Vietnam era it was a chance to give back a better greeting than what they got when returning.  I know Stan and Chuck both Vietnam heroes really appreciated the opportunity to be there to say thanks and welcome home.



Saturday, October 09, 2010

STAR multi-chapter ride to Jalama Beach

A lot of flags on this trip map...

View Larger Map

A complicated route over 400 miles including a couple side trips and I'm tired.  This ride was really sort of a tune-up ride in advance of the upcoming Death Valley ride in November as I did this group ride last year as well.  I found that my skills have improved but still need some work on the really tight curvy and twisty mountain type roads.  The road to Jalama Beach is not one to go flying over and it does keep your attention.  My problem was that the four other riders in my group going back are all very good at handling these type roads.  On the other hand, some riders behind me as we left the beach, soon dropped way back and could not keep up with me, so I must be doing pretty good, considering.
Picture below, you can see in the background right, where the road continues into another curve.

Rough road for most of the 14 miles

Our initial group of riders met off the 405 Fwy on Bolsa Chica and included, Glen, Brian, Leroy, Gary, and me.  We met up with another batch of riders in Camarillo so now there were nine motorcycles.  The second group included Terry and Vicki-each riding their own,  Ed & Susan, Keith and Staci.

Check the map carefully to see the side trips we took on the way back.  We did not get Jalama famous hamburgers as it would take too long with that big crowd, but I did have a Carl's Jr. Famous Star burger, so it all came out even.

All the various STAR chapters met up at the Hwy. 101 and the 1 exit before heading up Hwy 1 toward Lompoc and the Jalama Beach turn-off. I got a chance to meet Teresea Duerksen of Visalia from the Beginner Bikers forum that I have been a member of since about 2005. Always a treat to meet one of the folks on that forum.
 I have about 3,220 posts on so far.



 That's me on the Silver Road Star taking that curve.

Several of these photos by Susan Palaoro
What someone my age is doing tearing around the countryside, over hills, around curves and cruising down the freeway at 85 miles per hour on just two wheels, is just plain nuts. My E-Mail signature- "When I'm riding my motorcycle, I'm glad to be alive! When I'm done riding, I'm glad to be alive!" really came to mind after I got home and realized the ride was over and I was home safe and another fun ride with some great friends was completed.