Greetings from the BearCat Lodge in sunny Seneca, Oregon
Well, spring has sprung! Looks like this year’s riding season will begin at least a month early. Most of the roads are open and I’ve already managed to log a couple thousand miles so far this year. If the warm-up continues to progress at this rate we’ll be in the woods in April.
Once again we thank all of you for visiting us—we thoroughly enjoyed the company and camaraderie we shared this past year with adventurers from near and far. Although the year was marred by the tragic loss of Big in August, our two new feline family members, Kitten and Mouse, have settled in and made themselves at home with Bob and Moxie. All four of them make us laugh every day and they’ll entertain you, too, when you visit! Many of you have already called for reservations this season, and we’re excited to introduce you to the new “kids” and show off what we got done over the winter. All the rest of you, to ensure that you’re not disappointed when you come through, call well in advance to help us plan for your arrival. If you’ve not yet visited, we invite you to add us to your plans this year.
We have a couple of changes to report here at the BCL. First, those who visited early last year will be pleased to see our new shop facility located at the north end of the building (across the drive from the mini-mart).
To keep you going we have put together an extensive tool collection, lift, tire machine, essential parts and great accessories. Sponsors are entitled to purchase any products we carry at cost + 10%, and we are proud to announce that we are now dealers for Klīm technical riding gear and GoPro wearable HD cameras. So, check out their exciting new products on their websites (www.klimusa.com
) and let us know if we can order anything for you for spring delivery. We’ll be placing our parts and accessories orders in early April. Second, we’ve decided not to maintain a rental fleet, but I’ll have some of my own bikes available to ride so you can try out the cool new parts and accessories we’ve found. Third, the BearCat Lodge will be participating in this year’s Hell’s Canyon Rally as an event sponsor. We encourage all of you to join us there—June 11-14 in Baker City
—it should be a blast! (www.hellscanyonrally.com
As we noted last fall, many of our visitors from around the country and the world brought disturbing news about new back country closures or restrictions in Canada
, 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 those of you who have visited know, 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’re happily doing 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 invited 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. The response was wonderful, and we extend our heartfelt appreciation to the core group of riders who share our vision and became founding sponsors in 2009. Thank you! And please be sure to forward your 2010 sponsor candidates for consideration.
Due to the recession and still-sluggish economy, we’ve decided to extend last year’s sponsorship terms through the 2010 season with just one change—this year’s sponsors will receive an invitation to visit as our guests for just one week per year, not two. So, as before, those adventurers 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. Don
ations 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.
Here’s wishing all of you grand new adventures and the best riding season ever!
Warmest Regards and Safe Journeys Always,
J.W., Carol and the Cats
Watch for our new website this spring with more pics and details. www.bearcatlodge.com