Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Here's a doozy of a story for you!!
Sunday was a beautiful day and the snow and ice was more or less a memory—how can I resist the call of two wheels? Not me!!!
Around noon, I met some friends to ride—some I’ve never ridden with. What an experience it was. A few of my friends I’ve ridden with—the others—I had no clue. While I’m open to riding with new folks—I am not open to bad experiences.
I get down to the meet site and my friends and I get reacquainted and I introduce myself to the riders I have never met. We all have a jovial talk and just goof off. We talk about the destination and the expected route. After everyone is on the same page—we all mount up and fire up the motorcycles.
One of my girlfriends had left her ignition on which resulted in a dead battery. No worries, I hopped off my bike to help push start her bike. The other four riders sat on their bikes and stared. One even had the audacity to retort “solve your bike problems—get a Harley”!
Granted, one rider was unable to push even if she wanted to—she had an injury that disallowed running. However, the other three were quite able bodied and watch me push an 800 pound motorcycle and the rider.
I was pretty mad. After all, there is nothing more frustrating than to go to crank your bike and it doesn’t start. Fortunately for my friend, it was a dead battery—an easily solved problem…as long as there a hill to roll the bike down or someone to help push.
Did a bit of venting—a lot of good it did except make me feel better. I’m thinking if I ever see any of those so-called new friends on the side of the road, I’d pass them with a wave.
Of course, that’s not true—one of the unhelpful riders pulled over later due to a bug problem (no windshield) and we pulled over to make sure it wasn’t a serious problem. Thankfully, it wasn’t.
I guess you find out who the real bikers are and who are the rubs. I may not leave anyone behind, but I will think twice about riding with those thoughtless folks. Its one thing to good naturedly poke fun about another’s bike, but quite another to do it during mechanical issues. Of course, his shouldn’t have mechanical issues—his bike is only two months old!!
Keep the shiny side up!
~The Rainbow Wahine
Monday, October 16, 2006
I awoke to gorgeous weather…so the day’s plans were set. There were three of us and the plan of attack was drawn up. We would head north up to Monument Hill for the cellular trees, then work our way south to the Colorado Springs city limits sign, the Statue of Liberty, The Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, Garden of the Gods, Dakota Wall, then up to Old Colorado City for an art gallery, to Manitou for a fortune teller’s place, the locomotive. We would continue south for the World Arena, the limousine, hospital and finally, Culver’s for ice cream.
I know, I already have the Culver’s shot and don’t really need it….but the need for frozen custard was calling. Besides, I needed a shot with food for the fast food restaurant. Works for me.
I knew I should not have been riding yesterday; I just had a bad feeling of ju-ju when I climbed on the bike. First of all, it took me forever to find all my gear and I was not having my usual Zen moment with my bike. Still, my friends were waiting, so I headed out.
The first stop was out to Monument Hill. For those of you unfamiliar with the concept of the cellular trees—they are cell towers disguised as trees. Most people do not pay much attention to the scenery of trees—and do not notice that there are a couple of really strange looking pine trees. Well, for the fact that these “trees” tower over the other trees….I would not have known they were out there.
We decided to take the back way up to Monument—up Highway 83. As we were working our way up, I spotted another weird looking tree and pointed it out to my partner. She agreed that it was a cellular tree and we decided to pull off there instead of figuring out how to make the pull over on I-25 shoulder interstate traffic. My other friend had an unpleasant on the side of the road shoulder incident. His bike was totaled out when a truck hit it. Thank goodness he and his friends were off the bike!!
However, that’s another story for another day.
As we are driving around looking for the tower, I got separated from my group. Somewhere along the line, I needed to make a U-turn in the middle of the street and proceeded to do so. I’ve made many slow U-turns with no problem. I guess that yesterday was my number. As I am in the middle of the turn, I notice that there is a lot of sand down. I automatically think slow down—no hand brake. So here I am—in the middle of a U-turn, looking at the ground (yikes!) and on my foot brake.
True to what I’ve been taught and my experience—the bike goes where you look. I didn’t have enough momentum to make the turn and over I went. I’m in the middle of the road with a downed bike and my friends are up the road a bit. I lay on the horn and wait. Finally, they turn around, see me, and run to help me.
I’m actually still on the bike because I refuse to lay it down. My saving grace is that I ride with my passenger pegs down. I don’t have my crash bar on my bike and when I’m highway riding, I’ll rest my foot on my rear peg. That rear peg was what the bike was resting on. So I’m holding the rest of the bike up to keep it going all the way over. I kill the motor and am thinking…………….grrrrrrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaatttttttt……
Saturday, one of my chapter friends dropped her bike. She was talking to another member and wasn’t paying attention to what she was doing and forgot to put her kickstand down. Of course, when she went to get off her bike…over it went. Her new road name is Kickstand. She wasn’t hurt, thank goodness. Well, except her ego, I suppose.
I’m thinking that if I keep having these incidents with sand, someone is going to come up with a new road name for me. Knowing the insanity of my friends…it won’t be pretty—LOL…
At any rate, I suffer no damage as well, thankfully for my rear peg. I often talk about taking them off since I don’t ride two up, but it looks like they will stay. My girlfriend looks at me and says “well, you need to ride with your passenger pegs down all the time”!!
It is all good. No damage with a drop, I had my friends to help me and we ended up with quite a few Scavenger Hunt pics. I’m still so far behind the leader, but it’s all good. It has been a fun experience and another day of stories to add as well as lessons learned. The rest of the day was uneventful...well, I had another near drop from having my bike where it wasn't supposed to be...but the shot was terrific!!! Pics to follow...
Yes, I do consciously look check to see if my stand is down…before I set the bike down.
Keep the Shiny Side Up!
~The Rainbow Wahine
Thursday, October 12, 2006
I get out to look at the bike and at this point, I start putting things back together. I slide the bolt that holds the gas tank on and start tightening it down. I over torqued the bolt and snapped it clean off. YIKES!! KT, did you hear my curses?? LOL!!
I knew a trip to HD was in order…and this time HD being Home Depot. They have the bolts and they are less expensive. It’s all good..
At least it was a $2.00 rather than a $200 (or more) fix. The rest of the putting back together was uneventful…everything went back fine, I broke the fuse cartridge for my iPod adapter so I’ll have to replace that….still, all minor issues.
Wiring up the system to my bike was very simple. Cut the headlight wires, splice the transmitter in and use the connector thingys to complete the circuit. A bit of electrical tape. Putting the receiver on the garage door opener was a breeze too. I had to hard wire it on the garage door opener—it was two screws and two wires. Easy, easy, easy. If you can plug in a lamp, you can do this.
Of course, the test was to see if I could get the gizmo to work…and once the transmitter “bonded” with the receiver…I flipped the high beams on and held my breath…
The thing worked!!! Whooooohoooooo!!! No more lost house keys, no more lost remote controls. If you ride a motorcycle in Colorado, you understand how much gear you have to take for a scoot. Raingear, cold weather gear (yes, in the summer even cold weather gear), three pairs of gloves (at least), tools, water bottle, cell phone, iPod….I have my priorities…
Oh, Kathy, the HD item number is 91558-01A. And my thanks to Matt at PPHD for his exceptional help. He rescued me when I needed rescuing and kept my little project on track.
Overall, a learning experience…yeah….that’s what I’m calling it. It’s my story and I’m sticking to it!!
Next project on deck is the ol’ pipe switcherooni….seems that big box of header pipes showed up the week of my birthday from one of my dear blog friends….hugs, Greg!! Now, I’m hunting down the last bit of parts I need….and it should be on deck in a few weeks.
My friend Sandy wants to sit in on this one….Girls Garage 101…is open for business…LOL
Keep the Shiny Side Up!!
~The Rainbow Wahine
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
I have talked about this gadget before. No more lost garage remotes (yes, I lose stuff at an incredible rate of speed). Just a flash of my brights and the garage door closes. Flash again, the gizmo opens the door.
I couldn’t stand it anymore…and ordered the darn thing. I was able to get the “official” HD kit for around $100 including shipping. Versus identical pricing on the generic thingy…so HD was the route I went. If only to ensure that I got enough parts for my non-standardized need 42 bolts Fatboy. I had no desire to run to the local autoparts store to get all the extra stuff that wasn’t included in the other kit.
Good thing I did, because my fuse box has one auxillary accessory port and it is occupied by my heated hand grips so I needed to wire an empty port. Okay, so that meant one extra trip to the HD store….
Well, I can shop for other stuff while I’m there and flirt with the part counter guys. They always treat me very well and today was no exception.
I bought no other stuff. I resisted…LOL…
Wiring the bike for an additional auxillary port was no issue. I knew the hard part would be to get the wiring harness up the frame (under the tank) up to the headlight wires. No worries, I’ve done it before…..
Well, I got all the electrical issues taken care of, installed the wiring harness, pulled the wire to the front of the bike…all I needed to do was to wire it all together. I decided to put the bike back together before I attempted the last bit. I (smartly) tested the electrical components and everything worked so I put the bike together.
Then I realized the wires were on the wrong side of the frame and I needed to pull it and do a reroute. Everything was disassembled and I did the reroute. I was mildly annoyed at myself for not thinking through this clearly (but it is not specified in the handy dandy instruction booklet, so I’m blaming that).
Reroute done, I put everything back together…only to discover that my starter, trip meter, and odometer does not work. Great. Now what in the blue blazes have I done? Sigh. For the third time I pull the seat off (okay, I know I should have tested it before I put the seat back on, but I figured it was fine)…..and am getting seriously frustrated at the thought of having to put my beloved Fatboy back in the shop for something I dorked up.
Checking fuses and making sure I didn’t pinch off wires…I’m getting no where. My son, reminding me that he needs to be fed, forced me to put my project on hold. I cooked dinner, got him fed, and regrouped.
As I was doing a walk around the bike, I realized that I had loosened one of the bolts that holds the wire harnesses down…and also serves as a ground point. I tightened it back and flipped the ignition on. I had odometer and trip meter. I flipped the kill switch on pressed the starter and the Fatboy fired right up.
It was all about grounding the circuits. Interesting………..
Well, I’ll have the rest to do tomorrow…the temps have been falling and it’ll be too cold to work in the garage….
Life is once again good in motorcycle land. Besides, my friends would have never let me hear the end of having to put my bike in the shop…especially after dorking it up…
Keep the Shiny Side Up!
~The Rainbow Wahine
Monday, October 09, 2006
Whew…that day blew by!!
I finished with my last minute items at 2:30 am on Friday (errrrr….Saturday morning) and crashed for a few hours….until 5:30 am. I was up and out the door getting my last minute things down to one of the vehicles that was hauling gear then back at the house at 6:30 am to ride out.
The morning was cool, but watching the sun come up not only warmed me but my heart as well—our prayers were answered—the weather is going to be cooperative!! I rode down with a group of four members—all who had volunteered to help get set up to face the unknown number of registrants.
The Mountain Shadow Riders have a few new ideas on deck—a ride t-shirt, ride pins, and auction items—so a good turnout weighed heavy on our minds. Still, we managed to have humor and joke with each other while setting up. It was early in the morning, but the adrenalin driven excitement was palpable throughout the group! I think the four jumbo sized cups of coffee might have had something to do with my excitement as well!
Hanging Posters--I'm the girl in all pink.....
The auction prizes
Ms. BS, Sweetcheeks and The Rainbow Wahine funnin'
By 9:00 am, the parking lot of Western Omelet was full of bikers and motorcycles and everyone was busy. Everything appeared to be going smoothly and without incident so our group needed to head out and do the ride—to get down to Thunder and Buttons for the post-ride events.
The ride committee did an excellent job! The ride was local and included some roads in the city that I had never ridden. I was treated to some beautiful views of Colorado Springs. The ride was a memory ride—I had to pay attention to the surroundings and answer questions on the designated stops. Sigh. Did I remember the name of the church that was across the street of Western Omelet? Not on your life!! Just my karma, I never pay attention to the right things!
My thanks to the ride committee as well as the leader of our little group for doing an excellent job!
Down at Thunder and Buttons, the activity level was high—chance drawing tickets were being drawn as well as the ever important filling of human’s fuel tanks—stomachs!! The Mountain Shadow Riders members were busy doing various activities: from scoring the ride contest sheets, selling T-shirts, and working on stage drawing tickets and doing the auctions.
What a day it was! I believe the new implementations were a success—our auctions brought in over $1,000 alone!! The sellout of pins and the success of t-shirt sales also boosted our bottom line contribution. While the finally tally of dollars won’t be known until our Chapter meeting on Saturday, the word that we met and exceeded our goal of a $5,000 contribution is rumored from the Chapter executives. Whooooohooooooo!!
I know that the success of our ride couldn’t have been done without the hard work of our members. The ride, donation, promotions, and registration committees did wonderful jobs. Every member that participated in getting prizes, hanging flyers, getting the word out or doing whatever was necessary deserves high praise and has my thanks.
I also want to thank the various people that were outside our group that helped support us by promoting our event. They were the people that are in other organizations who supported us by inviting their members to join our cause. The help aided the turnout. My thanks to all of them as well!
We also received a number of suggestions for improvement of the ride for next year. Thank you for caring enough to want to improve our event!
Saturday night was quickly upon us—I pulled my Fatboy in the garage around 7:30 pm. It was a long day.
Sunday’s weather awoke to rain and cold temps. Thank goodness the weather held. It seems that we are forecasted to have snow this week. Brrrrrrrrr…
Again, thanks for all the members, the participants who turned out to support our event, and all the folks who contributed to helping make our Breast Cancer Awareness Ride a success. Without those who participated, our event could not have happened.
Finally, our cause. One in eight women will be stricken with breast cancer in her lifetime. That is one woman every three minutes. We are determined to make a difference in the statistics. The entire amount of proceeds raised Saturday goes towards the fund to educate, screen and treat patients in our community stricken with this disease as well as supporting national research to find a cure!
I will say….thank you for supporting our breasts!!
Keep the Shiny Side Up!
~The Rainbow Wahine
OH….and my ride basket was the Road and Rail Ride. My son’s love of trains was the inspiration for my basket!!
Friday, October 06, 2006
Our big event is upon us—-The Breast Cancer Awareness Ride for 2007.
The members all have been working on various projects. Mine is the Mystery Ride Auction.
Based on the “Picnic Basket Auctions” of western tradition, six members have generously put together a ride, an activity and lunch or dinner in a basket to auction off. The ride is for two members—the winner and his or her date or the MSR member that has put together the basket. This auction is called a "Mystery" because the MSR Member that is escorting the ride will remain a secret until all the baskets have been auctioned.
Yes, I have a basket in the lineup! NO, it is not red and shiny!!
While I can not tell you which rider goes what basket, I can tell you about the baskets:
A Day in The Saddle
Ride out to Front Range Barbeque in Old Colorado City. After lunch, the riders will head over for a horseback ride out in the Garden of The Gods. What fun! The Garden of The Gods is a beautiful park that offers spectacular views. Riding on horseback through the park will give an up-close view of what the park has to offer.
The Relax & Renew Ride
Ride out for a flavorful breakfast at Coyote’s Coffee Den in Canon City, then cruise the breathtaking route along the Arkansas River. A stop at Cottonwood Hot Springs Inn and Spa for a therapeutic soak in Colorado’s purest, geo-thermal, gravity-fed mineral hot springs. After the soak, dinner at Buena Vista’s The Missing Spoon. The basket also includes two full tanks of gasoline, and snacks for the ride. Ahhhhhhhhhhh…………
Mile High Ride
A hosted day ride to Independence Pass and includes a picnic lunch at the summit. The basket also has some great goodies such as: a $25 gift certificate to Thunder and Buttons, $20 gift certificate to Patsy’s Candies and included candy (yum!), bottle of wine and glasses, certificate for a case of beer, movie tickets and a memory frame for picture up at summit.
I’ve ridden Independence Pass and it is spectacular!!
Castlewood Canyon Ride
This ride is to a little known state park in our beautiful state. Ride includes the escorted ride to beautiful Castlewood Canyon, entry into the park, and a barbeque lunch (yes, the MSR Member is going to actually cook!!!).
Wine, Ride, & Dine Basket
A 180-mile ride that winds through Woodland Park, Deckers, Bailey up to Evergreen for lunch at Creekside Cellars Italian Deli and Winery. The return trip is through Morrison, Turkey and Deer Creek Canyons, Monument before ending in Colorado Springs. Items in the basket are 2 bottles of wine, 2 insulated tumblers, corkscrew, neoprene bottle carrier and $40 gift certificate for lunch.
The Road and Rail Ride:
Approximately 170-mile ride that departs after lunch at the Phantom Canyon. Ride then goes to Canon City for a breathtaking ride on the Royal Gorge Railroad. Ride then continues through Hartsel and stops in Woodland Park for a refreshment stop at Java the Hut.
I’ve ridden all the roads on the various ride baskets and I want to bid on them all!!! Not to mention that all my friends are putting the baskets together and I’d love to ride with each one! Not only that the baskets that each of the riders have put together are really great!!
All proceeds are going to the Colorado Springs affiliate of the Susan G. Komen foundation so your generosity will not only score a great ride, activity and food, but helps support the cause to support breast cancer research.
Come join us for the ride and then participate in the activities afterwards…one of the fun things we are doing is the ride basket auction. You don’t necessarily need to be on a motorcycle—you can do the ride in your vehicle…although it is more fun on a bike!!
Once again, here are the details for the Ride:
All bikes, all riders and all types of transportation are welcome.
All proceeds from registration and sales of chance drawing tickets will go directly to the Colorado Springs affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.
DATE: Saturday Oct 7th
Donation: $10.00 per entry
Registration Begins: 9:00am -- Last Bike Out 10:30am
Start Location: Western Omelette – 16 S. Walnut – Colorado Springs
End Location: Thunder & Buttons –2415 W. Colorado Ave. (Old Colorado City)
Last Bike In: 2:30pm
One in eight women will be stricken with breast cancer in her lifetime. That is one woman every three minutes. We are determined to make a difference in the statistics. Join us to help find a cure for this deadly disease. The proceeds from this ride will be able to fund education, screening and treatment programs in our community and support national research to find a cure!
The BCA ride is a “Test your Memory” run; at each stop you will be asked to answer a series of questions regarding items or landmarks you may have seen along the ride route. The ride is approximately 100 miles long. Riders will turn in answer sheets at the ending location and cash prizes will be awarded for 1st, 2nd, 3rd place – depending on the number of questions answered correctly.
A Chance Drawing for various door prizes will also be held after the last bike is in. Last year we gave out OVER $3,500.00 worth of prizes and gift certificates!! This year should be even better!
Last year we raised $3,000.00 for the local Susan G. Komen affiliate – this year our goal is $5,000.00 – Nothing is impossible and we can achieve this goal with your help!
I hope to see you there…I’ll be there having fun and cutting up…come and join this group of dynamic women and support our cause!!!
Keep the Shiny Side Up!
~The Rainbow Wahine
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
The meetings are always fun; I get to see my friends and they get to poke fun at me. Of course, they do manage to embarrass the fire out of me: something to do with my birthday!
The meeting is cut short and we head down to Pike’s Peak Harley Davidson to line up for the run. The run is fairly short and I think I might have gotten up to second gear! It’s always fun: some 800 motorcycles “cruising” the streets of the Springs. We are police escorted and my girlfriend comments “I hate to be the one stuck waiting for the bikes to finish passing”. Well, maybe not, but I guarantee the dude in the taxi wasn’t too terribly happy!!
The ride itself was uneventful; the best part is the “before” and the “after”. Can you believe that someone actually had the nerve to try and pass me off as an auction item? Seriously, I doubt that they would have made much money—and then when the winner figured out how much of a pain in the neck I really am, I would have been promptly returned!!
My friends are really terrific, aren’t they *grins*.
There were some really cool things to see too...one being the trailer below. Thanks to Ed for taking such a great shot!!
One thing about the toy run: we were able to get the character in a pack of 50 or more motorcycles! Santa was at the toy run and I cozied up to Santa to tell him my wish—could he please stand by my bike so I could get a photograph for the Scavenger Hunt?? I did NOT sit on his lap, for the record, I sat on the bench next to him. Of course, Ms. Blondie had a different idea!!
Overall, we had a big toy collection and it was great fun to visit with all the biking community! Not to mention some of the Scavenger Hunt Pics.
The days are getting shorter and the time is getting closer for the Mountain Shadow Riders’ Breast Cancer Awareness Ride. We’ve all been busy and can’t wait until the day arrives. Well, I’m happy except for the 7:00 AM report time…sigh….
Stay tuned for the details….
Keep the Shiny Side Up!
~The Rainbow Wahine
Monday, October 02, 2006
Saturday opened up to be a spectacular day. Clear with temps in the mid 70s.
We met up at Perkins Restaurant and did the introductions—name, length of time riding, and the vehicle we were on. We then had a chat about where the ride was to take our group, the hand signals used, the mechanics of group riding, and answered questions.
We were quite balanced—we had eight riders and paired up quite nicely. Lining up in our various positions and off we went.
The ride started through town and was actually quite nice. Traffic wasn’t too much of an issue and we were able to get out and about with no issues. It was nice to do a ride around town with the fall colors out in full display.
Out of town, we headed up to Woodland Park. Riding up Highway 24 is one of my favorite rides because of the short stint of twisty road. I settled back and enjoyed the ride. I normally ride on the right hand track so being in the left hand lane felt a bit odd, but I quickly adjusted.
Once we got up to Woodland Park, we had a fuel stop, restroom break and general chit chat about the ride so far. As we were coming out of the convenience store, I spotted a horse in a horse trailer—oh oh oh—a scavenger hunt item! I rolled my bike out, had a brief conversation with the owner and took my photograph! Score!!!
Before we got back on the road, we switched up lanes and positions in the group. This time I was back in the right lane and riding sweep. I just settled back and watched the group roll down the road.
The halfway point was Wilkerson Pass. This time of year is particularly beautiful. The leaves are turning so there are the touches of reds, yellows and oranges mixed in with the pines and the snow up on the peaks. Winter is indeed coming.
We stopped up at the pass and had more questions and answers and general chit chat. We set the lunch spot, talked to some of the other folks and enjoyed the scenery. I had heard that the Smokey the Bear Statue was up on Wilkerson Pass, but was unable to locate it. Sigh.
The ride down was terrific. Our fearless leader decided to test the group by doing a pull out—only to find that everyone pulled off as well! I motioned on to the lead bike—keep going and we did. At our lunch stop, we talked about the procedure of a rider pulling out and what to do. I think next time everyone except the sweep will keep going.
Lunch was a wonderful time….we all visited and even pitched a couple of games of horseshoes. I lost! LOL…oh well! Lunch was a wonderful fellowship and I learned quite a bit about the new members. Talk ranged from condiments to motorcycles and was general fun!
After lunch, we talked about the order of bikes leaving and who was getting out when. Gear on, bikes started and ready to roll….oh wait….one of our riders had a dead battery. Of course, this was an opportunity to have “Push Start 101” class!!
We did get the motorcycle started and off we went. As we got closer to town, we lost riders. At 4:00, I pulled in my garage. It was a gorgeous day, I rode with some old friends and some new ones and I know I had a wonderful time. I hope that everyone had a wonderful time as well.
Next on deck: The Toys For Tots Toy Run and then the preparation for the Breast Cancer Awareness Ride. We are busy…and winding down to the last moments of the ride. I tried my pink vinyls on and yes, they fit….*smile*.
Keep the Shiny Side Up!
~The Rainbow Wahine