Themed Rides

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Themed Rides

12 ways to ride into 2013

I recently put together a themed ride with several friends. One of the friends is down to having just a 250cc motorcycle. I have one in the stable as well. I started thinking about other friends who also had 250s. The 250/250 invitational ride was born. Five guys out for several days of riding. The plan: ride 250 miles on our 250cc machines. Bad weather cut the riding distance down a bit, but we still enjoyed two days of riding together. The lack of good weather inspired us to hold court in a nearby hot spring for two hours that first afternoon. Can’t complain.

Photo: Along the 250/250 route near Sol Doc Hot Springs

If you put your mind to it, I’m sure you can come up with a few themes of your own.

As you plan out your riding schedule for next year, consider these options, which are all doable in the Pacific Northwest. You can make them as short as an overnight trip or as long as a few weeks.

  1. The Air Museum Tour – We love our airplanes in the Northwest. There are more than two dozen air museums scattered throughout Washington, Oregon, Idaho and British Columbia. Even if you’re a sky nut, you probably haven’t been to them all!

    At right: Several AJS Motorcycles parked alongside a historical bird at the Western Antique Airplane and Auto Museum in Hood River, Oregon.
  2. Classic Motorcycle Tour – Up and down the west side of the Pacific Northwest are a number of museums, as well as dealerships, that hold some fantastic old bikes and memorabilia. There are also regular meetings/meet-ups of stronghold clubs like the Vintage Motorcycle Enthusiasts. Connect them all together and you’ve got yourself a nice ride.
  3. Classic Car Tour – Ditto for cars. The new LeMay museum is a must-see for this tour. You can also find listings of classic car meet-ups, rallies and shows to create a ride that includes rubbing elbows with other car buffs.
  4. Lakes Tour – Maybe you’re a nature lover and just want to get out and ride in the wilderness. How about a tour of stunning lakes? Each day ends with a serene view and accommodations on a pristine lake.
  5. Volcano Tour – There is no shortage of Volcanos up and down the west coast. As far south as California and a far north as BC and Alaska, you can string together a stunning ride hitting a new one or two each day.
  6. Hot Springs Tour – With all that volcanic activity comes plenty of hot springs. Many have been tapped and turned into public visiting areas for a fee. As a motorcyclist, this makes it easy to get off the bike and get a good soak in each day.
  7. Resorts – You like a little luxury? You want a nice day off here and there? You’ve got all the time in the world and plenty of cash? You owe it to yourself to pack a credit card and a few changes of clothes and take off, touring the many fine resorts we have in the Pacific Northwest.
  8. Rally Tour – In 2013 the BMW national rally comes to Eugene. Then there are the smaller club events, the Rally in the Gorge, and the list just keeps on growing. How many rally feathers can you stick in your cap or helmet this summer?
  9. Ghost Tour – Do you find yourself holed up all winter watching ghost stories and documentaries of the paranormal on your flat screen? It’s time to go 3-D and search for a few yourself. See #10 to find out where they are.
  10. Tour of the Weird – Thanks to the good folks at Sterling Publishing and Weird U.S., we now have a compendium of strange places to visit. Obtain copies of Weird Washington and Weird Oregon by buying them used (they're out of print), chart your course and hit the road.
  11. Photo Capture Tour – I, like so many riders, enjoy my camera. But without a list of pics to get, or a plan, I tend to miss getting photos along the route. Plan out a series of shots you’d like to capture, paying close attention to the best time of day for each one, then go get 'em!

    Photo: Capturing a photo moment in the majestic Palisades region of Central Oregon.

  12. Back Roads Tour – We can’t emphasize it enough. When you hit the road for any of the tours above, plan to ride the roads less travelled. Or, perhaps, that’s your only goal and you just want to get lost in the middle of nowhere and take whatever comes at ya. Cool!

The web is a great place to start looking for locations that suit your theme. We also enjoy using the Benchmark Atlas series for WA, OR & ID. We only wish they’d make one for B.C.

Photo: You have to get up early during the Rally in the Gorge to snag a picture like this at the Stonehenge replica located in Goldendale, WA

2012 was a great year for riding. Make 2013 an even better one!

TM/Fall 12

Sound RIDER! has been creating tours and riding events in one form or another since 2002. If you'd like to visit the area and would like a custom one-of-a-kind tour created for you, contact us.


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