Greetings from the BearCat Lodge
Now that the 2009 riding season is winding down, Carol and I and the cats would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for visiting us. We thoroughly enjoyed the company and camaraderie we all shared this past year. Although our summer was marred by the tragic loss of Big in August, we have two wonderful new feline family members for you to get to know next year. We’ll be posting pictures on our new website, coming next month.
Many of our visitors from around the country and the world brought disturbing news about new back country closures or restrictions in Canada, California, Washington, Idaho and places farther afield. These increasingly restrictive policies are troubling to those of us who enjoy the freedom of our riding sport.
As you all know from experience, we are fortunate here in eastern Oregon to have hundreds of miles of uncongested, wide-open roads and trails. Grant and Harney counties comprise a geographic area the size of Massachusetts, with nearly 7 million acres of public land and only about 15,000 residents. These rural counties recognize that motorcyclists boost the local economy, so they welcome our rallies, events and tourism. Although our presence is welcome now, it will be increasingly important as the area grows. Regional County, Forest Service and BLM roads, and long-used private byways cannot be closed unless they are “abandoned.” Since continuous use of these resources is essential to maintaining public access, let’s all do our part as often and well as possible!
We’ll happily do our part, too, here at the BearCat Lodge in the heart of the world’s best motorcycle riding! As adventure riders and outdoor enthusiasts ourselves, we enjoy the opportunity and responsibility of creating and maintaining an oasis for all who love exploring our beautiful wild country.
Carol and I are committed to creating a legacy that will enable your sons and daughters, and their sons and daughters, and the sons and daughters of motorcyclists everywhere to come experience eastern Oregon’s wonderful open spaces and the deep satisfaction and enjoyment adventure riding engenders. Since we don’t have any children or heirs to pass the Lodge on to, when we retire we will pass it on to an individual or group of individuals who share our vision and will maintain our legacy.
To that end, we are inviting a select group of special friends to join us—to help us create the haven the Lodge can become, to be our regular guests as it grows and matures, and to shape and share the wonders of this unique place. Those who would like to participate and are willing to donate $5,000 will receive a certificate of appreciation identifying you as a friend and supporter of the BearCat Lodge and inviting you to be our private guests in our upstairs residence for up to one week each riding season. The first 20 participants will also be invited to be our private guests for an additional week in the off-season.
Donations may be made in the form of a lump-sum $5,000 cash payment, or a $1,000 down payment with the balance plus 8% simple interest to be paid within one year, or trade. (If you have special skills such as carpentry, plumbing, electrical, landscaping, web design, etc., we would be willing to discuss labor in lieu of money. Materials in lieu of money would also be a possibility.)
The participation of friends in our project will not only allow us to complete the renovation and rehabilitation of the Lodge, it will also give us an opportunity to identify kindred spirits we can pass the Lodge on to, knowing that our vision and legacy will continue and prosper into perpetuity.
J.W., Carol and the Cats