ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > The perfect line and other riding myths
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 02-14-2012, 06:19 PM   #1
tigerboy OP
Tight as a Tiger
 
tigerboy's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2002
Location: West Virginia
Oddometer: 110
How many ride their bike to the airport and park there?

Well last week I did just that, but certainly not my first choice.

Of course I was driving to the PIT airport to catch a flight to ABQ. 3pm flight, I leave at 11pm, takes 2 hrs to get to PIT. No problem, right? Driving my '95 Buick LeSabre that I had checked out by my mechanic a week prior. As I got on the on-ramp to the interstate the red temp light came on. Now what?!

Thinking I should pull over and check it out, to my shock I'm out of coolant. Shoot I didn't think to pop the hood before leaving the driveway, and now I'm going to miss my flight. Stupid me. I pop the hood and sure enough, lots of steam comes from the engine. Overheating for sure. I grab my water bottle and empty the contents into the coolant tank and figure that will be enough to get to the exit where I can then get coolant from a service station. I manage that okay, fill up the container with coolant and start on the road, still have time to catch my flight. Should be okay now

Shoot, the temp light comes on again! Just my luck, I pop the hood and it's overheating again. Now what? I have to call AAA, no choice. I give them my location, and meanwhile I hope to thumb a ride to the airport by holding out a sign. It does not work, nobody stops, and it's cold and slushy not pleasant at all. Half an hour later, the engine is cool, I figure maybe the coolant has circulated into the system by now, but 3 miles later it overheats again. One thing is sure, I ain't gonna make it to the airport 90 miles away. Clearly I'm going to miss my flight, whole trip is down the drain.

I'm a bike guy, not a car guy, I'll have to take my car to the shop for them to figure out what is wrong and how they missed what should have been an obvious problem. To me, a car is a money pit and if I have to scrap my car due to a leaky head gasket or some other very expensive repair, I'll go some time before getting another. Besides I don't have the money right now to waste on a friggin' car. They sell for too much money in general.

Tow truck comes gets me home, and I end up paying $45 because I have the cheap AAA membership that only gives you 5 free miles of towing. I'm a rider, not a driver and I rely more on AMA than AAA. I call up Southwest, any way I can get on the next flight without additional cost? Next day flight will cost me $300 extra they said, but they have a rule : if you miss your flight you can go on standby on the next available one on the same day. They tell me next flight is 4:50pm, and now it's 1:30pm (my original flight was 3pm). How to get to the airport now?

Of course, by Triumph Tiger.

As for making the flight it's going to be close. I figure a 2pm departure is going to get me to the airport by 4pm, and flight is 4:50pm. Wow.


Motivation gets me working at the speed of light to pare down my luggage to one carry on bag and knapsack, strap it on the back of the bike, air up the tires, lube the chain and away we go into fierce blowing snow! : I tear down the Interstate towards PIT, and my hands and feet get close to freezing. Sure wish I had heated hand grips in this rainy/slushy weather. Rest of my gear keeps me dry, I discover my boots aren't quite waterproof, though.

Two things slow me down. First, I had to stop for gas, next I had to stop to put my rain paints over my boots. Fortunately the snow gets lighter, not heavier as the trip wears on.

I pull up to the airport parking on schedule. It's about 3:50, actually. Of course, being on a bike, I don't trip the sensor that spits out the ticket, so I have to press for help and the gate keeper comes to manually open the gate for me. There goes about 10 minutes. I use the expensive covered short term parking because of two things. It's closer to the terminal, and given this crappy weather, I'd rather have my bike with a roof above. It'll be there 5 days @ $24 a day. We'll worry about that later. I park the bike, strip my motorcycle gear, lock it and my boots into my topcase, put on my spring clothing for ABQ and rush towards the terminal.

First order of business, Southwest tells me standby so far is good. 4 unsold seats and if a single seat is still available by the time I get to the gate I'll be on the flight, so my gamble paid off. But....Fool, I was! The security lines are LONG, and because I have two carry ons, I can't use the express lane. Stupid me, if only I left the knapsack with my bike. Now I had to hope I can make it thru the ridiculous security without any delay. Thanks TSA. It takes 20 minutes, I now have about 15 minutes left to catch the flight. By the time I take the train to get to the concourse, I get to the gate with 5 minutes to spare. And thankfully they still have a seat, so I get on the plane I call my friend in ABQ to meet me, which is now going to be later than my original plan.

Wow, had anything gone wrong, I would have missed the flight and the entire trip (I would have cancelled out at that point). The trip to Albuquerque (and Phoenix) was great, and the only painful part was after I got back to PIT. Two things. First the cold ride home but checking the forecast while I was away, it could have been worse, I suppose. Stupid me again, I should have worn my motorcycle boots, all wet at the time, to ABQ, because now they were frozen and I could barely get my feet in now. Next, I had to pay the $133 for parking, and they showed NO mercy for me parking a motorcycle and next, the cold ride home. I was thinking if I had been there a couple months, I might have chanced an early exit because a bike easily gets around a gate, that was present before you get to the tool booths. Of course that would adding stupid on stupid because I would get caught and rightfully charged for theft of parking use. I don't need a criminal record right now, nor did I need a lecture one typically gives to a child. So, I paid the fee, though I did express a bit of frustration.

The ride home was okay, I thought if I kept my toes and hands moving at all times, I'd make it home okay, yesterday. It was now around 8:00pm. The temp was just below freezing. Had it been 20 or something, I might not have made it home in one shot (probably would have needed to make a stop to warm up).

I had no heated handgrips, no heated vest and my motorcycle boots were only semi waterproof, and semi-frozen. I don't ride in bad weather as a rule, so I did take a gamble. Heck just riding is a gamble, every time I get on the machine.

My conclusion? Day jobs suck. I wish I didn't have to have one. My dream would have been to simply RIDE to ABQ from WV : stay 2 months there and help out my friend with this and that, then ride home and get to enjoy all the scenery in-between. And I would have left two days prior when we had really nice weather, all going to a waste.
__________________
'01 MZ Baghira Motard

Tigerboy.com
tigerboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2012, 06:33 PM   #2
stuckinUT
I Wanna Ride!
 
stuckinUT's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2011
Location: Heber City,Utah
Oddometer: 111
Thats some good luck or something to make it with only minutes to spare. Cold feet suck.
__________________
03' DR650-the mule
06' KTM 450 SMR
6D Helmets, 100% Goggles, MVD Racewear, Alpinestars, Warp 9, Beringer Brakes, Pro Circuit
stuckinUT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2012, 08:14 PM   #3
tedder
irregular
 
tedder's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Los Angeles (ktown)
Oddometer: 8,797
quite a few (55 actually) in Portland at the end of september:



I've picked people up at the airport, I've done fly-and-rides, but generally I take public transit to the airport.
tedder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 10:19 AM   #4
dwoodward
Beastly Adventurer
 
dwoodward's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2005
Location: Pacific NorthWet, Napa Valley North
Oddometer: 4,924
Quote:
Originally Posted by tedder View Post
quite a few (55 actually) in Portland at the end of september:
This is the ONE thing done right for motorcycles in Portland. Go to the airport, motorcycles park right next to the terminal, under cover, and free.

EDIT- leave it to Tedder to count how many motorcycles, and remember that number five months later...
dwoodward is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 12:12 PM   #5
tigerboy OP
Tight as a Tiger
 
tigerboy's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2002
Location: West Virginia
Oddometer: 110
Props to anyone who rides a DRZ to the airport to pick someone up.

The responses so far generally affirm that riders get a better treatment on the West Coast vs. the East Coast . On the East Coast we don't have things like free airport parking , lane splitting or even a lower toll on highways and bridges (it often goes by axles where bike has 2, a car has 2, they both pay the same ).

Had PIT been like Portland, I'd be saving $133. Wow, that buys a lot of gas. uk, I could ride my MZ Baghira over 1600 miles at that rate.
__________________
'01 MZ Baghira Motard

Tigerboy.com
tigerboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 12:26 PM   #6
LittleRedToyota
Yinzer
 
LittleRedToyota's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2011
Location: Pittsburgh
Oddometer: 2,232
Quote:
Originally Posted by tigerboy View Post
Props to anyone who rides a DRZ to the airport to pick someone up.
more props to her...she doesn't mind/actually sometimes likes riding on the back of it!

we once did a ride where i picked her up at the airport, rode to visit her father in steubenville...from there to my sister's in cranberry...and then back to my place in the city. lots of highway miles on the back of the DRZ...that had to be something close to torture.

but, after that trip, she still wanted to go ride through the twisties in schenely park. and then she asks me "what type of motorcycle should i buy? do you think a cafe racer would be good for me?"

Quote:
The responses so far generally affirm that riders get a better treatment on the West Coast vs. the East Coast . On the East Coast we don't have things like free airport parking , lane splitting or even a lower toll on highways and bridges (it often goes by axles where bike has 2, a car has 2, they both pay the same ).

Had PIT been like Portland, I'd be saving $133. Wow, that buys a lot of gas. uk, I could ride my MZ Baghira over 1600 miles at that rate.
yeah. it's a shame pittsburgh does not embrace motorcycles more fully. it's a perfect city to get around via motorcycle...lots of hills and twisty roads and narrow side streets and potholes, etc.
LittleRedToyota is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2012, 04:14 PM   #7
rdwalker
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2005
Location: The Badlands (of NJ)
Oddometer: 2,528
Not very good, but not that bad, either.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tigerboy View Post
Props to anyone who rides a DRZ to the airport to pick someone up.

The responses so far generally affirm that riders get a better treatment on the West Coast vs. the East Coast . On the East Coast we don't have things like free airport parking , lane splitting or even a lower toll on highways and bridges (it often goes by axles where bike has 2, a car has 2, they both pay the same ).

Had PIT been like Portland, I'd be saving $133. Wow, that buys a lot of gas. uk, I could ride my MZ Baghira over 1600 miles at that rate.
Now, let me defend the honor of the East Coast a bit. It may be not as moto-friendly here as on the West Coast - but then, nothing in the whole US is as moto-friendly as in most European countries, for that matter, so we'll take what we can...

JFK and Newark Airports do have free motorcycle parking (though not easy to find, see my previous post).

MTA bridges and tunnels in New York have lower moto rates.

Motorcycle EZ-Pass toll rates on New York State Thruway are just about half of those for cars.

On the minus side, unfortunately, neither GS Parkway nor NJ Turnpike discount motorcycle tolls. Also, while High Occupancy lanes are open to motorcycles in NY State and NJ, there are reports here of riders being harassed/ticketed in NYC.

Oh, well, at least some.

rdwalker screwed with this post 02-16-2012 at 04:21 PM
rdwalker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 03:09 PM   #8
tedder
irregular
 
tedder's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Los Angeles (ktown)
Oddometer: 8,797
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoodward View Post
leave it to Tedder to count how many motorcycles, and remember that number five months later...
I counted and kept the number with the photos. Otherwise I wouldn't still remember.

I had a bit of free time. My ride was late on picking me up
tedder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2012, 11:36 PM   #9
Bucho
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Dec 2006
Location: Maryland
Oddometer: 1,743
I rode my bike and parked it at the airport once. At my destination I was able to borrow a friend's motorcycle to get around, so since I needed my riding anyway. I figured I'd just ride. There was a big sign saying NO MOTORCYCLES at the long term parking lot. But they took my money to park anyway.
Bucho is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 05:24 AM   #10
Naq
Kitsune
 
Naq's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Philly
Oddometer: 200
I've parked in the remote lots. Sometimes the attendants are finicky. I had one refuse me entry even though I had called ahead earlier in the day to verify motorcycles were allowed. The next lot had a "No Motos" sign, but the guy just waved me through.

When I got back a couple days later I wished I had brought a cover. The bike was coated in sticky, greasy grime.
__________________
That side up.


'02 FZ1, '02 DRZ400S, '09 TE250
Naq is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 05:30 AM   #11
MikeJansen
Lost
 
MikeJansen's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2004
Location: Essex, UK - Still looking for home
Oddometer: 107
I've done it several times at airports around the UK.

Heathrow, Gatwick, Stanstead and EMA.

Free parking is a plus. Taking your helmet, boots, 'stich with you is a big minus. Too big to carry on in the EU so ya gotta pay for checked baggage. If flying to the states I generally pack light enough to have room to check them for free.

The train to the airport is stupidly expensive and a massive time suck.

M
__________________
"A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving." - Lao Tzu
MikeJansen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 06:23 AM   #12
rdwalker
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2005
Location: The Badlands (of NJ)
Oddometer: 2,528
NYC area airport moto parking

There is moto parking in NY-area airports.

JFK has a row of outdoor spots in front of a fairly distant airtrain station: Long Term Parking A/B area @ Lefferts Blvd. The parking row is near "Kiss & Fly". It's free!

Newark has a weather-protected section on the lowest level of a parking building: P4 at the Valet Park site, just before the garage barrier.

La Guardia is supposed to have one, too: Marine Air Terminal outside Lot #7 on the Fiorello Lane side. This one I did not check out yet.


Directional marking is between poor and none. You will not find the sites unless you know about them. Those who are interested, should scout out the locations beforehand. And, of course, motos are banned from regular lots - the gate barrier will not open for a bike. DAMHIK...

rdwalker screwed with this post 02-16-2012 at 04:16 PM
rdwalker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 06:52 AM   #13
thehomealien
Gnarly Adventurer
 
thehomealien's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Central Illinois
Oddometer: 179
I picked up a girl on the Versys at the airport once. She was coming back from three weeks in Italy, so I had to weld a rack to carry her luggage. The ride home was 2.5 hours.

She's a keeper
thehomealien is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 08:47 AM   #14
LittleRedToyota
Yinzer
 
LittleRedToyota's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2011
Location: Pittsburgh
Oddometer: 2,232
i've picked up friends at the PIT airport on my DRZ.

i was thinking about riding it out there and parking it for a weekend trip i took once, but i don't want to ride out there without gear, and i don't know what i would have done with my helmet, boots, etc. (no checked luggage for me and no storage on the DRZ.) it would be really nice if they had discounted motorcycle parking (half price for half a space) and lockers where you could lock up your gear while you were gone.

i usually just take the bus to the airport if i'm going somewhere...one advantage of living in the city.
LittleRedToyota is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 01:26 PM   #15
PoundSand
Beastly Adventurer
 
PoundSand's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: socal
Oddometer: 5,766
I haven't done it, due to not being sure what to do with gear (i don't check bags, ever, if i can help it), but LAX airport parking is free in the central (i.e. closest) parking structure.

the procedure is a little shady though- you're not supposed to pull a ticket- drive around the gate arm. also not supposed to park in a parking space. basically find areas that aren't parking spots and don't block traffic (end of lanes, behind barriers, etc) and park there. then drive around the gate on the way out.
PoundSand is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 01:57 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014