Just think - spring is here!
For many of us, that means the beginning of our riding season
- for others, it means we can wear less clothing and be more comfortable
on our bikes. I usually participate in Polar Bear and as such fall
into the latter category. Unfortunately, since I crashed early
last November and decided to do some upgrades as well as repairs
on my bike it was out of commission for nearly 3 months.
Happily, I was able to enjoy my first ride on the "new" bike
a few weekends ago. Since I had the bike outfitted with completely
different tires and suspension (Avon Venoms, Progressive shocks,
Progressive fork springs and a lowering kit) I wanted to go for
just a local ride, especially given the combination of brand new
tires, cold pavement and my unfamiliarity with how the bike would
handle. So Charlie and I set out on a 25 mile ride on local roads
one Sunday morning.
I was a little nervous at first but soon settled into a rhythm
with the bike. The VTX always had a fairly heavy feel to the front
end that I had become accustomed to over the last few years. Now
the turns felt completely different, with a much lighter touch
needed to guide the bike through the turns.
As we neared home I regretted not planning out a longer ride
but decided to stick to our original itinerary since that was all
we had dressed for and we were getting a little chilly. We pulled
the bikes back into our respective sides of the garage, and I leaned
my bike onto the side stand and shut it off. I pulled off my full
face helmet, took a deep breath and exclaimed, "I need a cigarette!"
I don't smoke - but yes, it felt that good to be out on the
bike again. Until I took this ride I had no idea how much I had
missed the riding.
I've since taken several other longer rides and am feeling good
about the handling, continuing to get more accustomed to the "new" bike.
I've also ordered more custom bits for the bike (more "bling").
It's great to be back in the saddle again - to those who have
not been riding recently, I hope you get the opportunity to get
out on your bikes soon. And I hope you enjoy the ride as much as
I did mine!
Wishing everybody happy and safe rides