Motorcycling Photo Galleries

2019 Fall Foliage Tour

The highlight of this year's FFT was Paul leading a couple of us on a (gentle) off-road adventure to see the largest wind farm in the east. Very cool! (Even if we did get slightly lost for a bit... ;-)

2019 Fall Foliage Tour Video & Slideshow (1080p)

The same pictures in slideshow format, with some video mixed in. The video is just over 1GB, so it might take a few moments to download/buffer, depending upon your internet connection.



2019 Labor Day Chicken Run

Another terrific ride!

2019 Labor Day Chicken Run Slideshow (1080p)

The same pictures in slideshow format, with some video mixed in.



2019 Jim Ford Ride

Jim Ford... friend, author, longtime salesman at Bob's BMW, and nowadays leading workshops at his very well received Riders Workshop, invited several us down to his home base in Floyd, VA to enjoy some of his favorite roads. As you can see in the pictures and video, the weather didn't exactly cooperate on the one day he led us around the county, but a wonderful time was had by everyone, regardless. Thanks, Jim!

2019 Jim Ford Ride Slideshow (1080p)

The same pictures in slideshow format, with some video mixed in.



2019 Memorial Day Chicken Run

Another memorable Chicken Run! We had quite a turnout, and the weather was very nice for the most part.



May 2019 BRR

Last year's soggy spring BRR run seemed to presage the extraordinarily wet weather we experienced the rest of the year. This year's run couldn't have been more different... perfect weather! What a great run!

May 2019 BRR Slideshow (1080p)

This is a very large file (over 1GB). Downloading it first is highly recommended.



2018 Fall Foliage Tour

The big (and only) disappointment with this one was Jay's brake line mishap (caused by the Auto Train people), which caused him to have to leave early. Great ride otherwise!

2018 Fall Foliage Tour Slideshow (1080p)

The same images, plus a bit of video.



2018 8-Day Motorcycle Trip, BRP, MABDR, and Labor Day Chicken Run

I packed my tent and headed off on a very nice eight-day motorcycle trip that included a trip down the Blue Ridge Parkway, a first dabble with the Mid Atlantic Backcountry Discovery Route (MABDR), and topped off with the Labor Day Chicken Run. An epic trip!

2018 8-Day Motorcycle Trip, BRP, MABDR, and Labor Day Chicken Run Slideshow (1080p)

This is a very large file (nearly a gigabyte), so downloading first is recommended!



2018 Memorial Day Chicken Run

The wet weather that began with the BRR continued through Memorial Day weekend. Still a great ride!

2018 Memorial Day Chicken Run Slideshow (1080p)

This is a very large file (nearly 700mb), so downloading it first is recommended!



May 2018 BRR

This was probably the wettest BRR run I can ever remember. But it was still an epic adventure!

May 2018 BRR Slideshow (1080p)

This is a very large file (nearly 900mb), so download it first!



2017 Fall Foliage Tour

This was the smallest turnout we've had since I began going on these runs 24 years ago... two riders. Forrest and me. Dave showed up, too, but in his car. The forecast of rain apparently scared folks. No matter, despite a little wet weather this was a wonderful run, with perhaps the prettiest colors I've ever seen!



2017 Labor Day Chicken Run

Yep, you guessed it... another great run!



2017 Memorial Day Chicken Run

Another great run!

2017 Memorial Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (1080p)

The same images, plus some extra.

2017 Memorial Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (720p)

A slightly smaller slideshow. Recommended for portable devices.



May 2017 BRR

This year we returned to Little Switzerland, NC. Another great run!

May 2017 BRR - Video Slideshow (1080p)

The same images, plus a little extra.

May 2017 BRR - Video Slideshow (720p)

A slightly smaller slideshow. Recommended for portable devices.



2016 Fall Foliage Tour

Another epic run!

2016 Fall Foliage Tour - Video Slideshow (1080p)

And, a little bit extra...

2016 Fall Foliage Tour - Video Slideshow (720p)

A smaller version...



2016 Labor Day Chicken Run

Another terrific run!

2016 Labor Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (1080p)

The same images, plus a little extra...



2016 Memorial Day Chicken Run

Another fabulous Chicken Run. Good to have Dave Sulser there... always one of my favorite riding buddies; and, along with John Holt, the center of the Chicken Run back in the early nineties when I began attending.

2016 Memorial Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (1080p)

The same images rendered as a 1080p HD video slideshow. Unless you have a very large display, or are using rendering software (such as Quicktime) that automatically scales it to your display, they may not render properly.



May 2016 BRR

This year we returned to our roots... staying in Bryson City, NC and riding the great roads in northern Georgia, southeastern Tennessee, and the far western reaches of North Carolina. TN Mike mapped out a couple of epic routes. A terrific run!

May 2016 BRR - Video Slideshow (1080p)

Here are the same images rendered as a 1080p HD video slideshow. Unless you have a very large display, or are using rendering software (such as Quicktime) that automatically scales it to your display, they may not render properly.



2015 Fall Foliage Tour

Another terrific fall foliage ride. Jay gets the long-distance award for this one, having ridden up from Florida. Having not seen him for a few years, it was great having him along. All the more so because he got to experience our new digs at the Old Clark Inn, courtesy of our hosts Andrea and Nelson. Weather was a mix. A little rain for most of us as we headed in. But the weekend itself in Marlinton environs was perfect. And Saturday night saw Jay, Kevin, and myself over at the Pocahontas County Opera House to enjoy Nora Jane Struthers & The Party Line, a really great country and blue grass band. Couldn't have asked for a much better weekend!



2015 Labor Day Chicken Run

Another perfect trip into the wilds of West Virginia! As in the Memorial Day run, we again stayed in Marlinton at the Old Clark Inn, rather than at Snowshoe. And once again I think nearly all of us agreed that OCI is now our favorite place to stay on these trips.



2015 Memorial Day Chicken Run

After 30+ years (of which I've attended for the last 23) of the Chicken Run happening up on Snowshoe Mountain, we changed it up and stayed at the wonderful Old Clark Inn in Marlinton. The Bed and Breakfast that Kevin and I stayed at during our 'mid-summer Chicken Run' last year. It was terrific! Snowshoe certainly has tradition going for it. Not to mention a certain top-of-the-mountain ambiance. But the general consensus among our little gang was that the Old Clark Inn in Marlinton has world's better accomodations. We'll still likely stay at Snowshoe occasionally - probably for the Fall Foliage Tour - just for the tradition. But most of our trips in the future will probably find us there at OCI, down in Marlinton.

The weather gods blessed us with almost epically good weather. Just a fabulous trip.



2015 DC Motorcycle Show

A few images from our annual mid-winter reprieve.



2014 Labor Day Chicken Run

Despite the unsettled weather, another great Chicken Run! We missed Kevin - who ended up having to bail at the last minute because of a pet emergency - but the accomodations he booked may have been the best we've ever had on a CR. The icing on the cake was that I took my Harley and, instead of heading home on Monday, continued on west for a few days of solo riding in Kentucky and western West Virginia.


2014 Labor Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (1080p)

Here are same images rendered as a 1080p video slideshow


2014 Labor Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (720p)

Here are same images rendered as a 720p video slideshow


2014 Mid-Summer Chicken Run

The 'polar vortex' that brought us all that frigid weather last January and February made a reappearance. Only this time in July. Which meant wonderful, perfect weather. Kevin and I decided to make a quick, impromptu trip to Snowshoe (albeit, we ended up staying in Marlinton).


2014 Memorial Day Chicken Run

Another great run. Perhaps the best weather across the entire long weekend we've ever had. Three days of Kodachrome light. Just perfect. I met John Saturday morning in Edinburgh. We then travelled our usual favorite route to Brandywine, where we were surprised to find Kevin and Scott waiting for us (it's been awhile since the Carolina crew has made the trip for chicken). After a delicious repast at the park benches, we made our way further into Chicken Run country... and another terrific run.


2014 Memorial Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (720p; approximately 35mb)

Here are same images rendered as a 720p video slideshow. These should render properly on most high-resolution laptop and desktop displays.


2014 Memorial Day Chicken Run - Video Slideshow (1080p; approximately 65mb)

And finally here are the same images rendered as a 1080p HD video slideshow. Unless you have a very large display, or are using rendering software (such as Quicktime) that automatically scales it to your display, they may not render properly.



May 2014 BRR

As far as I'm concerned, spring doesn't really start until the May BRR run has happened. As usual in recent years on the May run, we were down at Little Switzerland, on the Blue Ridge Parkway down in North Carolina. Lots of rain and fog on the day we rode south from Staunton. And very cold that night. But very nice after that. We enjoyed some of the best paved motorcycle roads in the world, along with a bit of light off-road stuff. Wonderful run!


May 2014 BRR - Video Slideshow (720p; approximately 55mb)

Here are same images rendered as a 720p video slideshow. These should render properly on most high-resolution laptop and desktop displays.


May 2014 BRR - Video Slideshow (1080p; approximately 105mb)

And finally here are the same images rendered as a 1080p HD video slideshow. Unless you have a very large display, or are using rendering software (such as Quicktime) that automatically scales it to your display, they may not render properly.



John Lyons

On the occasion of his 70th birthday, here is a little video John Lyons, co-founder of the Chicken Run. All the pictures are of latter years - as I didn't know John back in the early years. The last picture, however, was from the era - within a year or two, of when the Chicken Run first began. It was taken by John Holt.

Happy birthday John!



2014 DC Motorcycle Show

The annual mid-winter DC Motorcycle Show is something I always look forward to. It gives me a couple hours of immersion in the beautiful thing I love perhaps more than any other, and gives hope that spring is not too far away. Here are a few images from this year's show.



2013 Fall Foliage Tour

The Fall Foliage Tour is my favorite ride of the year. Although bittersweet because of impending cold weather, the natural beauty of the ride cannot be denied. This year, some of us extended our normal three-day weekend into an extra day, just like on the Labor Day run. And despite unsettled weather over the entire weekend, it was a wonderful ride. Andy rode up from south Georgia. And both John H. (74 years old) and Bill (79 years old) rode up by themselves. Like I said about the Labor Day run - these guys are my heroes!



2013 Labor Day Chicken Run

A terrific four-day run. The extra, free, day was courtesy of Kevin's excellent accomodation negotiations. Kevin also discovered a wonderful new road most of us never knew existed (John was aware of it, having ridden it many years before; but it was part gravel back then. It is now entirely paved). My comment, upon riding the eastern half, was that it was like riding through an enchanted forest. A true gem.

Also notable... we had three guys in their 70's on the trip. John, at 74, was the youngster. Then came Forrest, at 77. And the prize goes to Bill, at 79. These gentlemen are my heroes!



2013 Memorial Day Chicken Run

Despite unseasonable cold and windy weather - thank God for electrics! - another great Chicken Run.



May 2013 BRR

Another terrific BRR adventure at Little Switzerland. We had some challenging weather for a day or so while down there (rain and fog and near zero-degree visibility there in the mountains), but that was okay - just meant the drinking lamp got lit a little earlier than usual. Earle managed to get a streaming internet feed of MotoGP qualifying and so we sat in the bar at the lodge with a variety of cold beverages enjoying that. (Meanwhile, Barton, Mona, and Dave, intrepid to the end, braved the elements and rode down to Asheville for lunch). The day prior Tennessee Mike led a group of us on a ride to an ADV rally, a jaunt that naturally included some dirt/gravel roads. Seeds even got his riding suit dusty (and reported having a great time doing so)! And despite Jim's having an injured wing which prevented him from riding, he and Susan drove down in their car to join in the fun. After missing both BRR runs last year, it was especially great seeing everyone.



2013 DC Motorcycle Show

A few images from my favorite mid-winter event.



2012 Fall Foliage Tour

Another rather wet weekend. Still wonderful!



2012 Labor Day Chicken Run

A little bit wet (including a frog strangler on Sunday morning, just as we were finishing breakfast). But mostly just another fine 3-day run. Great time.



2012 Memorial Day Chicken Run

A perfect 3-day run. Perfect weather (even the odd splash of rain was welcome). Perfect roads. Perfect riding pals.



2012 DC Motorcycle Show

I'll take almost any sort of motorcycle event in the middle of January. But, hey, the Hooter's girls were missing this year! I usually look forward to getting a "model shot" or two from them. Despite their absence, I had a good time. Here are a few pics.



Labor Day 2011 Chicken Run

Another excellent run. Randy Stanley, John Holt's nephew, got the easy long-distance award - coming all the way from Boston (and then having to leave on Sunday morning because he had to be back home by Monday night). It was great meeting him. And Rob and Conny met us Saturday morning in Edinburgh and, altough they couldn't stay overnight in Snowshoe, nevertheless rode with us to Brandywine for the chicken. It was really nice seeing them again. David and Mary (MV Agusta and Triumph, respectively), had trailered up from their home in Florida and were spending a week in Marlinton. They rode with us on Sunday. Great roads and terrific company all around!



Memorial Day 2011 Chicken Run

A most excellent Chicken Run, made all the more special by the attendance of John Lyons, who climbed aboard his Kawasaki Concours 14 a few weeks ago and rode all the way from Seattle. Mr. Lyons was joined by John Holt - the other co-founder of the Chicken Run (32 years ago!) - and Forrest Walls, the other fellow who used to ride with them back in the day. To that esteemed triumvirate we had a bunch of latter day riders - you know, those of us who've only been doing this ride for 17 or 18 years!

Just like the BRR last week, we were blessed with incredibly good weather, terrific roads, fine company, no breakdowns, and no crashes. As Mr. Lyons begins his journey back home, we can all raise a glass to the official unveiling of summer. May it be filled with miles and memories.



May 2011 BRR

What a terrific five days! We left (variously, PA, NJ, MD, VA, SC, TN - with Barton coming from NY the day before) on Wednesday, 5/18, with a horribly unstable weather system hanging over the east coast. We frankly expected rain every day of the trip. What we got insead was five days of absolute perfection - sunshine and temperatures that were just about ideal. And our base camp at the Inn at Little Switzerland couldn't have been better. They even had a wedding booked while we were there - I can't think of a prettier venue in which to get married - and I captured a few images of that. Three of us did get, ahem, "performance awards." But there were no crashes, no breakdowns, and no drama. An excellent adventure!



2011 Bob's BMW Open House

Here are a few images from Bob's annual spring Open House.



2011 DC Motorcycle Show

My one reliable respite from the winter doldrums is the annual DC motorcycle show in January. With a ton of salt on the roads there's not much chance I'll be experiencing the real variety anytime soon. Here are a few images from this year's event.



2010 Fall Foliage Tour

Another excellent run, with perfect weather, beautiful roads, and outstanding company.



2010 Labor Day Chicken Run

Another terrific run, albeit one that started out with a bit of uncertainty. Kevin has been away so much this summer playing in tennis tournaments that his stash of kitchen points was at an all-time low. And John, despite his saintly sister once again flying up to take care of things on the home front while he got away for a few days, ended up having a funeral to go to. But it all ended up well - Kevin made it despite of his dearth of chits; and John rode down on Sunday morning and met up with us in Monterey.

We couldn't have asked for better weather. Slightly cool - more typical of what we see during the Fall Foliage Tour. And three days awash in bright sunshine. It was perfect!

Neil and Denise and I rode down from Northern Virginia. Scott and Clyde rode up from North Carolina and met us in Brandywine for the chicken - which was excellent. Kevin met us down at the bottom of the mountain there at Snowshoe. And Ken, Wes, and Dale came down from the northern West Virginia / Pittsburgh areas. Since Kevin was supposed to be a no-show, Scott volunteered for spaghetti duty Saturday night - and did a splendid job of holding up Kevin's tradition!

I did forget the coffee. But even that turned out well - as Wes, Dale, Clyde, and I rode up to the Starbucks at the top of the hill early on Sunday morning to get our caffeine fix. While enjoying that I managed a few quick images of a couple of lovely young women there. The hardships we photographers go through to capture the beauty of the world!

An hour later we joined our compatriots back at the condo for a ride to Watoga for breakfast, where we met up with David and Mary - who had come up from Florida a week earlier and had spent the time riding the wonderful roads in the area. David rides an MV Agusta Brutale and Mary a Daytona. They fit right in.

After that, rather than the classic roads we normally hit, I led our troupe on some of my favorite roads in western Virginia. Everyone seemed to enjoy them. Late Sunday we were happy to have a short visit by Bill and Mona, who didn't know early enough if they would be able to make it and so made arrangments to stay at the Brazenhead Inn a few miles up the road. It was fun seeing Bill's new bike. And both of them are an inspiration.

Coming home on Monday, the only real potential bad news for the weekend happened when myself, John, and Neil/Denise were blue-lighted by one of Virginia's finest. But as if to emphasize that this ride was going to be nothing but good, even that turned out okay - after a brief lecture, the officer handed us back our permits with just a verbal warning.

Couldn't ask for a better capstone than that...



27 Hours

A photo essay of my just-a-little-more-than-a-day trip down the Blue Ridge Parkway in June of 2010. Here is my conventional web gallery of the trip, including most of the same images, in my traditional web gallery format.



2010 Memorial Day Chicken Run

This run was notable because it marked the return of John Holt and Forrest Walls, co-founder and charter member emeritus, respectively, of the now 31-year-old Chicken Run. John missed all of last year - save for joining us for a handful of stolen hours last September - due to some very serious family medical issues. And Forrest, likewise, had some things he was taking care of. Having both these gentleman back for an entire 3-day run was the very best sort of luck. They bring an ineffable quality to these lovely long weekends.

As if recognizing that, the gods blessed us with three days of great riding. Neil and Denise joined John and Forrest and I for the ride down from Northern Virginia. Kevin, Rasmus, Dolph, and new guy Harry - who fit in perfectly and within 5 minutes was no longer the new guy - came up from North Carolina. Ed came down from Pittsburg. And Andy made the long trip from Alabama.

And, yes, it seems that even after 31 years there's always something new to behold. This run will long be remembered for the sight up on one of our favorite roads... of a couple of naked bicyclists! We didn't stop to ask what all that was about!



2010 DC Motorcycle Show

After the brutal cold weather of recent weeks, we were fortunate to have an unusually moderate day for this year's Cycle World International Motorcycle Show in DC. That made for a pleasant trip to the show; and then a hospitable late-afternoon afterwards, as I walked around near Chinatown.

The several shots of the gentleman on stage, wearing a tan jacket, are of John Burns, feature editor of Cycle World magazine.

The single shot of the Civil War "poster" is just in front of the old Mary Surratt boardinghouse. That is the locale from which John Wilkes Booth purportedly hatched the plot to assassinate Abraham Lincoln - and for which Mary Surratt was hung. The building today - or at least the ground-level floor - is a Chinese restaurant. It's amazing to me that the government has never purchased it as a historical landmark.



2009 Fall Foliage Tour - HTML (regular web viewing)

Heading into the weekend for this year's FFT the weather looked a bit sketchy. But it turned out fine. Overcast, with just a touch of rain on Saturday; and more precipitation encountered by our southern contingent on the way home Monday; but overall not bad at all.

Andy made it up from southern Georgia; Jay made it - having moved to Charlotte (NC) from his home in Florida; and - the easy award for long-distance participant - Annette came over from Germany. Dave Sulser made it, as did Neil and Denise, Kevin, and me. And we had a couple of new folks attend for the first time - Bill and Mona. It was great seeing everyone!



Sept 2009 BRR (BRR-12) - HTML (regular web viewing)

Earle outdid himself on this one. Rather than a trip south along the Blue Ridge like we usually do, he took us northeast into New England. I'd never been to that part of the country before and it was a special treat.

Wednesday (9/23) was a "gather the clan" day. Earle, Jim, and both Eric's came down from PA to meet up with Tennessee Mike and me in Berryville, and then escort us back to Earle's home in West Chester. There he and Char hosted a wonderful cookout Wednesday evening.

Thursday (9/24) was the true "clutch-out" day. We left early, first heading to Earle's shop where he swapped his GS for his K1200S and where we met up with most everyone. We caught up with Lew just a few miles later, who then led us most of this first day. Lew's scenic route took us through PA and northwest NJ to Hawk's Nest; and from there north through the Catskills. The last couple of hours of daylight there in the Catskills were especially memorable, with the water on our left and the sun setting. It was stunning. We spent the night near Lake Placid.

Friday (9/25) was overcast and chilly when we left in the morning. No worries, electrics fixed that. Our largish group also broke up into smaller troops, as it would numerous times during the trip. It was kind of fascinating how we'd end up with one small group for a few hours, then serendipitously catch up with the larger group, then break up again into different smaller groups. Mid-morning we rode to the Canadian border for a photo op. We didn't actually enter Canada, but that didn't matter to the US Customs agents, who put us individually through the normal ringer when we turned around and rode the hundred feet back to 'The States'. Once we were done with that, we enjoyed a delightful sprint through Vermont and New Hampshire. I was struck by two things: the beautiful countryside and the sudden changeover from the "Deer Crossing" signs one usually sees to ones that read instead... "Moose Crossing". Hmm.

Towards the middle of the day we climbed a stunningly beautiful vista to a place called "Smuggler's Notch" at the top. The reason for the name became apparent as we crested the summit - the road itself was literally carved through a chunk of rock the size of a dump truck. There we had the closest call of the whole trip. Nick had the throttle cable stick on his R1100RS and he was unable to check his speed as he traversed the "notch". His right-side cylinder head actually hit the rock and the force of the blow bounced him into the other lane. It was a miracle he was able to keep the bike upright. He was able to gingerly ride to the bottom of the mountain, where after a quick discussion - the cylinder head wasn't unduly damaged, but the throttle was definitely a problem - it was decided that Jim and Eric H., would accompany him to a BMW dealer 18-odd miles away. The rest of us continued on to our lunch-time roundevous with Char's sister Debby and her son.

The evening was punctuated by a delightful ride through New Hampshire's White Mountains - and a scary moment in the dark as we descended the last mountain to our hotel in Attitash: Earle had a near-miss with a moose. Turns out all those "Moose Crossing" signs weren't lying!

Saturday (9/26) dawned clear and cold - 26 degrees! The cold weather made for a few hard-starting bikes. And despite the good work by the dealer yesterday (who both fixed his throttle cable and installed a fresh rear tire) Nick's troubles weren't over. Bump-starting his bike in the parking lot of the hotel, the sight glass blew out. That prompted a split in the group - some remaining behind to assist with the repair while others of us headed for Mt. Washington. Famous for its oftentimes extreme weather, the ride up that peak was fun - though slow in parts because of all the car tourists. After enjoying that vista, we continued on north towards our evening reservations in Bar Harbor, Maine. The afternoon saw us on the one "goat path" of the trip - a dirt track (it didn't deserve to be called a "road") that wound for 5-6 miles over a mountain. The last surprise was when we pulled into the Hotel parking lot just at dark - only to find Rick and Linda smiling there on the veranda! On the spur of the moment they had decided to ride up and join us in Bar Harbor for the night. And to top it off, Rick had filled one of the Jesse hard bags on his GS with beer and ice. After a long day of riding, pulling up to that sight was a treat! Dinner that night was fun. I enjoyed lobster for the first time in my life. And Jim got lucky...

Sunday (9/27) we hit the only rain of the trip - lots of it. We descended back south along coastal Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont, finally turning west once we were in Massachusetts. We spent the night in a beautiful little motel in the Berkshires.

Monday (9/28) was ride home day. A front was moving in from the west which brought heavy wind and rain. Skirting south to the edge of the front, I was fortunate to miss most of the precipitation. A pretty day for the most part, albeit one bittersweet because it marked the end of the trip.

A terrific run!


Sept 2009 BRR (BRR-12) - Flash (slideshow)

The same images as above, but rendered in Flash. Use this link to view them as a slideshow.



2009 Labor Day Chicken run - HTML (regular web viewing)

This was the chicken run that nearly wasn't - at least for me. My mom had major surgery just a couple days prior. But she came through the surgery exceptionally well and after a couple days of enduring visitors decided she'd rather have some quiet time to herself. So I ended up going on the run after all.

Since my original plan had been to only steal a few hours and do a half-day ride with John and Forrest down to Brandwine - and then head straight to the hospital in Charlottesville - I neither packed my usual gear nor even took one of my West-Virginia-mountain-road-friendly sport-touring BMW's. I just jumped on the Harley. Ginny encouraged me to go ahead and spend the night in Snowshoe and "see how it goes" from there. In deference to that remote possibility, at the last moment I tossed a spare t-shirt, skivvies, and toothbrush in my day pack. It was without a doubt the lightest I've ever traveled anywhere!

Bless the wisdom of my wife. Turns out my mom went the entire long weekend still not wanting visitors. So I ended up staying for the whole run.

It was good to meet up with John and Forrest and Mike in Edinburg. Alas, Forrest continues to have electrical gremlins with his VFR - when we were getting ready to leave his bike wouldn't start. He pushed it across the street to get a jump (and head on home) while John and Mike and I continued on towards Brandywine. There we hooked up with Neil and Denise, his girlfriend. The chicken was good. And it surely was great to ride with John again, though I wish it could have been longer. He had to bail for home after lunch. Godspeed Petra.

Hours later we met up with Kevin, Rasmus, Clyde, Ken, Ed, and Wes at Snowshoe.

The next day Wes hit a deer. It broke the beak off his R1100GS but otherwise he and the bike were okay. Lucky.

Then, in the mix of bikes and parking and talk and starting up again in the aftermath of that, Neil dropped his bike while doing a U-turn. Not so lucky.

Fortunately, that was the end of the misadventures for the weekend. It got much better after that, with great roads, good food, cold beer, and fine company.

And yes Virginia, a Harley is a perfectly fine motorcycle to take on the chicken run!


2009 Labor Day Chicken Run - Quicktime (Slideshow w/music)

HIGH BANDWIDTH WARNING!!! Here's a version rendered using Quicktime. Why yet another slideshow version? Because using Quicktime allows some cool effects, including embedding a musical background. If you don't already have Quicktime it is available as a free download from Apple Free Quicktime Download. Beware - this is a very large file.



2009 Memorial Day Chicken Run (30-Year Anniversary) - HTML (regular web viewing)

As I mentioned in my blog (E vestigio), this run was memorable both because it was the 30-year anniversary of the Chicken Run; and because neither of the co-founders (John Holt and John Lyons), nor its other charter was-there-back-in-the-beginning member (Forrest Walls) were there. We missed those guys.

It was a good weekend, though. And it continued the recent run of mostly good luck with respect to the weather - we had just a bit of rain late in the day on Sunday - just enough to cool things off. It was actually pleasant.

Kevin and Clyde came up from Greensboro early on Friday, and Ed came down from Pittsburgh, making it a 4-day run for the three of them. On Saturday the rest of us arrived, including Rasmus, Scott and Ashley, Wes, Ken, and myself.

On Sunday's ride we ranged further west than we usually do, heading southwest to Hawks Nest State Park and thence north on rt. 16, eventually circling back around to Webster Springs and rt. 15 and the roads we run all the time. It was a very pretty day.

A very nice run.


2009 Memorial Day Chicken Run (30-Year Anniversary) - Flash (slideshow)

The same images as above, but rendered in Flash. Use this link to view them as a slideshow.


2009 Memorial Day Chicken Run (30-Year Anniversary) - Quicktime (slideshow w/music)

HIGH BANDWIDTH WARNING!!! Here's a version rendered using Quicktime. Why yet another slideshow version? Because using Quicktime allows some cool effects, including embedding a musical background. If you don't already have Quicktime it is available as a free download from Apple Free Quicktime Download. Beware - this is a very large file (140mb)!


And here is a zip file containing the two legs of our route on Sunday:

GPS Routes from Snowshoe to Hawks Nest & Back



2009 DC Motorcycle Show

Other than the occasional ride one snags, there's not a lot of motorcycle activity going on in January. So the annual appearance of the International Motorcycle Show in DC is always a welcome event, providing a brief bit of motorcycling fun - and a reminder that better days are coming.

I only took a handful of pictures, but it was enjoyable, as always.



2008 Fall Foliage Tour - HTML (regular web viewing)

A spectacular run. I don't know that I can ever remember a trip which combined such great weather - brightly sunny weather all three days, cool in the mornings but warming nicely within a few hours - with some of the most intense fall colors I've ever seen. It was really, really nice.

Jay came up from Florida to make the trip; Wes came down from Pittsburgh; and Forrest, Dave S., and I represented the Northern Virginia / D.C. area. (Nikon D3, 85/1.4, 24-70/2.8 AFS, 70-200/2.8 AFS)


Here's the route during the second half of our Sunday ride (after heading down to Watoga for breakfast; then winding back around to Snowshoe via the Highland Scenic Highway):


2008 Fall Foliage Tour - Flash (slideshow)

The same images as above, but rendered in Flash. Use this link to view them as a slideshow.



2008 Labor Day Chicken Run - HTML (regular web viewing)

Another excellent run. We had some new folks show up for this one - Dana, Tracye, Dale, Ken, and Rasmus. And Mike, who first attended during the May run (which I missed) and who, uhm, tossed his bike away, showed up on a new FJR. That's one way of getting rid of a cruiser (Magna) and making room for a proper sport-tourer!

No crash incidents this time, thankfully. And everyone had a good time. Kevin and John were there - John on two newly-rebuilt bionic knees. And Clyde and Wes made it back.

John and I didn't think too much of it when Forrest didn't meet us at the gas station in Edinburg. But we began to worry a little bit when he failed to show for the chicken in Brandywine. Turns out he made a stop in Luray and when he climbed back on his VFR it wouldn't start. He had a bit of a saga getting a new battery and trying to re-start his trip, but in the end he ended up calling his brother-in-law to bring his trailer. Bummer.

And someone happened to glance down at Mike's rear tire at the conclusion of Sunday's ride only to find ten inches of cord showing. It was doubtful he'd make it the 370 miles home to Pennsylvania, so on Monday morning, while the rest of us headed to the various points of the compass on our routes home, Mike rode a gentle 40 miles north to Elkins. There he ensconced himself in a cheap motel near the local Yamaha dealer. We figured he was making up for the day he lost back in May!

Good ride. (Nikon D3, 24-70/2.8 AFS, 85/1.4)


2008 Labor Day Chicken Run - Flash (slideshow)

The same images as above, but rendered in Flash. Use this link to view them as a slideshow.



May 2008 BRR Run - HTML (regular web viewing)

Earle pulled something new out of the hat this time - a trip through southeastern Virginia, western West Virginia, and eastern Kentucky, thence down across the border into the central section of Tennessee. We stayed at the Cedar Hill Resort - some of us on an 80-foot houseboat, others in cabins.

I met Earle, Duc Dude, Eric "The Brush", and Andy in Purcellville, where we had lunch. Then Earle led us on a route he had mapped out for us. We had an interesting time along a gravel road - we got slightly off the chosen route and our GPS's kept trying to direct us off the (fairly well-groomed) gravel road onto what truly were goat paths. We declined the suggestions. Later on, with a couple of the bikes low on fuel and no gas stations to be found, we had to buy a couple of gallons from some local fellows we ran into. Eventually we made it to Lewisburg, West Virginia, where we were staying for the night. Barton and Dave were already at the motel, Barton having ridden down from Buffalo and Dave having taken our "goat path" route ahead of us. Shortly thereafter Lew showed up on his new-to-him Ducati ST-3 - he had flown into North Carolina, bought the bike, and ridden it there. We had a nice dinner where, after a modest quantity of alcohol, I confessed to having bought a, ahem, Harley back in January. And around 10pm Jim pulled in, after having pulled an all-nighter the night before, and then working half a day before leaving. He, too, found the goat path!

The next day took us through coal country. The roads were terrific but we had rain to go with them so couldn't enjoy them as much as we might. The water mixed with what must be the silt-like residue from the mines and left our bikes a mess. I think it's the dirtiest any motorcycle I've ever owned has been!

After lunch in Pineville, Kentucky, we had a pleasant ride the rest of the way to Celina, Tennessee, where the resort is located. Mike and Jim were already there, ensconced in one of the cabins.

With not-great weather the next day, we decided to take the boat out for a ride in the morning. Dale Hollow is a pretty big lake, but I still can't believe they let us take that thing out! When we got back to shore Rick was there to greet us. In the afternoon TN Mike and TN Jim took us on a tour of some of the local roads. Then a beer run and back to the boat, where Earle and Mike conspired to grill steaks for dinner.

Saturday was our finest day. A beautiful, sunny day. Ducdude went in search of a fresh rear tire (which he found) and Barton and Dave, with engagements the next day, left to head east. The rest of us followed Earle on more great roads - of which Tennessee has a plethora. Lew lost his clutch (you can't bring a Ducati on a multi-day trip and not expect some adventures!), but then, ahem, found it again. TN Mike and TN Jim split to go home after lunch. And late in the day Jim fell in love with the girl at the car wash. I couldn't bring myself to tell him that there was a baby in that truck!

I originally was going to take the extra day and go with Earle and the gang on Sunday, ending up in Lewisburg or Snowshoe. That would have put me within reasonable striking distance of home on Monday. But upon waking and hearing that rain was forecast all around, I decided to go ahead and bail for home. Which I did, running 600 miles through periodic rain.

A terrific run! (Nikon D3, 24-70/2.8 AFS, 70-200/2.8 VR AFS)


May 2008 BRR Run - Flash (slideshow)

The same images, but rendered in Flash. Use this link to view them as a slideshow.



2007 Fall Foliage Tour

Something new; something old. John Holt and Forrest didn't make it, having only recently returned from their 3+ week riding adventure out west. But we had three new riders: Erik Kauppi and Laura Atwell from Ann Arbor Michigan; and Wes Biery, a riding buddy of Ed's in Pittsburg. The biggest challenge of the weekend was in not having John's "road captain" skills to guide us. I was elected "trail boss", a term soon to be regretted.

We were back at the Whistlepunk; and we had spectacular weather, albeit unseasonably warm, for the entire three days. I think it's the first time - at least as long as Kevin and I've been coming on these - that we had perfect weather for all three runs during the year. I dunno what we did to deserve that, but we'll take it!

The adventure didn't take long in getting started for Ed and Wes - Wes had a flat tire shortly after leaving Pittsburg. With modern tubeless tires that's not such a big deal anymore. But Wes was riding an old BMW airhead (in immaculate shape!) with tube-type tires. Fortunately, they were only three miles from a Harley dealer, who was able to get them back on the road again. Even so, they were late rolling in Saturday night.

We also ran into some of my pals from the Blue Ridge Runners - aka the "Pennsylvania Boys" - at the gas station down at the bottom of the hill. They had left a couple days prior on the fall BRR run - which I couldn't make because I couldn't get off work. But it was good to see them, if only briefly. A little bit of serendipity.

Dave Robinette met us Sunday morning at Watoga, where we had breakfast. He even came with a kitchen pass to stay the night! Alas, that breakfast was kind of like the last meal of the condemed. With Jeff "Trail Boss" Hughes leading the way with his trusty GPS, we soon were exploring "roads" - goat paths might have been a more apt description - that probably don't see ten vehicles a week. I had tears streaming down my face, inside my helmet, from laughing so hard, as I imagined the mutterings that surely must be trailing out behind me! Heck, it was just a short cut!

As soon as we popped back out into civilization, Kevin, Erik and Laura, and Ed decided they'd had enough of that nonsense and bailed back to the condo. Wes, Dave, and I, intrepid to the end, contined on towards lunch in Hinton, there at Kirk's, overlooking the Greenbrier River. And then a pleasant run back north on rt. 20.

All in all, it was another memorable run. Even if I did get fired as road captain! (Leica M8, Summicron 28 ASPH, Summilux 50 ASPH, CV 15)


2007 Labor Day Chicken Run

With half our usual contingent heading west for the first-ever "west coast chicken run", those of us still in the east elected to change venues to Meadows of Dan, Virginia - thanks to the gracious hospitality of Clyde Collins! Dolph Everest took us on a tour of some of his old riding haunts. And though we missed it (because we were out riding!), Appalachian State (Dolph's alma mater) beat Michigan in what may be the biggest upset in college football history. (Leica M8, Summicron 28 ASPH, Summilux 50 ASPH, CV 15)


2007 Memorial Day Chicken Run

The Memorial Day 2007 Chicken Run. Snowshoe, W.Va. We were back at the Whistlepunk, our old standby for so many years, after staying at individual house rentals during the last few runs. (Leica M8, Summicron 28 ASPH, Summilux 50 ASPH)


2006 Fall Foliage Tour

The 2006 Fall Foliage Tour. We had terrific weather, wonderful color, and a great trip. Dave Sulser brought Pat and the girls up with him - they stayed at a separate condo - and we had a wonderful dinner with them on Sunday. (Nikon D200, 12-24/4, 28-70/2.8 and 70-200/2.8VR AFS Nikkors)


2006 Labor Day Chicken Run

The Labor Day 2006 Chicken Run. Snowshoe, W.Va. A fair bit of rain on this run, but still fun. (Nikon D200, 12-24/4, 28-70/2.8 and 70-200/2.8VR AFS Nikkors)


2006 Memorial Day Chicken Run

The Memorial Day 2006 Chicken Run. Snowshoe, W.Va. Another great run. Good weather. No incidents. Jay came up from Florida to make the trip on his new (to him) K1100RS - this after his Honda CBR 1000 was stolen last year. Out of bad, usually comes something good... (Nikon D200, 12-24/4, 28-70/2.8 and 70-200/2.8VR AFS Nikkors)


2005 Labor Day Chicken Run

The Labor Day 2005 Chicken Run. Snowshoe, W. Va. Neil flew in from Seattle and rode John's "loaner" ZRX and Scott made an appearance on his K1100RS. Nice weather and no incidents (no bitch-and-ditch this time!). (Nikon D70, 28-70/2.8 and 80-200/2.8 AFS Nikkors)


2005 Memorial Day Chicken Run

The Memorial Day 2005 Chicken Run. Snowshoe, W.Va. Highlights of the trip were the first overnight trip on my several-week-old R1200GS, John L., flying in from Seattle in order to ride with us, the youngest rider we've ever had on a Chicken Run, a sidecar rig (to which that rider was ensconced), and Scott's crash on John's ZRX. (Nikon D70, 28-70/2.8 and 80-200/2.8 AFS Nikkors)


2004 Fall Foliage Tour

Terrific weather and beautiful scenery graced this year's FFT. Good to see John L., again, too - he flew in from Seattle and rode John H.'s ZRX. (Nikon D70, 28-70/2.8 and 80-200/2.8 AFS Nikkors)


2004 Memorial Day (25-Year Anniversary) Chicken Run

The Chicken Run (see History of the Chicken Run to see what this is and how it got started) is the longest-running and most oft-repeated motorcycle trip that I do. I started going on these runs in 1993, but they actually began much earlier than that. This trip marked the 25-year anniversary of the run. I think it's safe to say that very few non-commercial motorcycling events have ever had such a long-running and storied history. In honor of the occasion we had several out-of-towners fly or ride in just so they could partipate. Most appropriate, of course, was John Lyons who flew in from his home in Seattle. John was one of the co-founders of the run and so his presence was singularly important. Jay took the auto train from his home in Tampa so he could be there (slabbing his Honda CBR 1000 that distance would have been a torture few of us would have relished!). And the easy long-distance award goes to Annette and Torsten, who flew in from Germany.

It was an excellent trip. We had good weather for the most part, the roads were the delight they always are, and we even had a few more folks make three out of three (ask John H. or John L. what that means!). Best of all was seeing so many folks we haven't seen in awhile. The only downside was a spill by Torsten caused by a shadowed patch of gravel. But after John L., patched up his bleeding foot Torsten was able to ride the bike back to the condo. All's well that ends well.

Click 2004 Memorial Day Chicken Run - Slideshow to see these as a slideshow (warning: it's about 20mb - those of you without a high-bandwidth connection beware). The slideshow is in Quicktime format - if you don't already have Quicktime on your computer it is available as a free download from Apple Free Quicktime Download. (Nikon D70, 28-70/2.8 and 80-200/2.8 AFS Nikkors)


May 2004 BRR Run

The May 2004 run of the Blue Ridge Runners. This was one of our runs down the Blue Ridge Parkway to the Deal's Gap area. (Nikon D70, 28-70/2.8 and 80-200/2.8 AFS Nikkors)


September 2000 BRR Run

This was the fourth Blue Ridge Runners run. (Nikon F5, Fuji Provia 100, 28-70/2.8 and 80-200/2.8 AFS Nikkors)


1995 Labor Day Chicken Run

On this run we met up with Joachim and Annette, German friends of Dave, who were in the midst of an epic nine-month motorcycle-plus-sidecar trip across several continents. Dave had met Joachim a year or two earlier in a happenstance meeting at one of the overlooks up on the Highland Scenic Highway (rt. 150). Joachim was travelling by himself on that trip and he and Dave struck up a conversation. They stayed in touch and when Joachim embarked on his round-the-world adventure on Hannibal (his chosen name for the sidecar rig he fabricated especially for the trip), this time with his new wife Annette, they planned it so they could ride with us during our Labor Day run in West Virginia. We met up with them in Brandywine, West Virginia (where we normally enjoy the barbecue chicken which gives the run its name). When we left, heading west on rt. 33, Kevin and I fell in behind Joachim and Annette on their sidehack rig. When we came to the first serious curve Annette - riding passenger - lifted out of the chair and swung her ass sharply outboard of the turn. It was as polished a move as you'd see at the Isle of Man, but took Kevin and I by such surprise that we both started laughing in amazement. We shouldn't have been. As we were soon to discover, Annette was both an accomplished motorcycle pilot and the best motorcycle pillion any of us had ever met. (Nikon F4, Fuji Provia 100)