ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-16-2013, 09:27 PM   #1
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
You're that guy!

Not exactly the words you expect to hear from an opera singer stranded on a remote stretch of New Mexico highway, but considering the events transpiring before and after this bizarre meeting, maybe it wasn’t so odd after all. In the words of Jerry Garcia, “what a long strange trip it’s been”.

The inspiration for my impromptu motorcycle journey was Trevor Ware ; Trevor was known locally as a very free spirited motorcyclist and musician, often seen riding around Little Rock on his hand built 1974 Honda CB550 with his dog Kiebab perched on the tank. All of this came to a screeching halt when Trevor was left for dead in the middle of I-40; a drunk driver struck him so hard from behind that his beloved Honda was carried over a mile away, stuck in the grill of the drunk’s Mercedes. Trevor’s life was saved by two members of a local sport bike club who happened to spot his body blocking the center lane, and who put their lives in extreme jeopardy fending off oncoming traffic until emergency personnel could arrive. Though his life was spared, his injuries have left him severely impaired and confined to a wheelchair, requiring twenty four hour care. Before his accident, Trevor had quite the international following as the “kerncountykid”; his “Go West Young Man” ride report where he told of his ride to California and back has reached cult status, and his video, ‘When Were You Young”, affected me to the point where at 50 years old I decided to throw reason to the wind and head west myself on my 1991 Honda Nighthawk 750, no particular destination or time frame in mind. My wife and kids were supportive but puzzled; was this journey a fundraiser for Trevor? A vision quest of sorts? Or just another shot at relevance and adventure from a middle aged Walter Mitty? Or a mixture of all three? only time spent alone inside a helmet could answer those questions for me.




Trevor's bike after he was hit and left for dead:



Trevor's map of his various journeys; now hangs above his bed where he can look at it every morning waiting to start his daily rehab:

__________________
By God, Woodrow; it's been one hell of a party.

dogjaw screwed with this post 12-18-2013 at 06:56 PM
dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 09:40 PM   #2
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
I left Little Rock in early August; as bicycle riders sometimes shave their legs as a rite of passage from recreational to competitive athletes, I shaved my head. As it was 105 across, AR, OK, TX and NM, and I would be camping if and where I could find a place to hang my Hennessy Hammock, I figured hair was luxury I could do without. My old Honda was loaded with what I considered the bare essentials, hammock, sleeping bag, a few clothes, rain gear, etc; my clear face shield blew off of my bike somewhere in Oklahoma, which effectively removed any desire to ride into the night. This would negatively affect me later as I encountered daily thunderstorms in the higher elevations. As I rolled into Elk City too late to find a suitable camping spot, my first night was spent sleeping on a picnic table behind a RV park washateria; a good idea as a massive hailstorm blew through shortly after midnight, and a bad idea as some RV campers have an unexplained urge to do laundry at 4 AM. Nothing will make you soil your Tourmasters faster than waking up to find a stranger with a laundry basket looking down at you, so I took that as a sign that I should skedaddle, heading west across through the remnants of the storm towards Capulin National Monument, an extinct volcano rising 8800’ above the surrounding New Mexico scrub. As I had never met anyone who had actually been there, I could legitimately claim to be the first ascender, right?




cruising the strip in Elk City, great town, limited camping:



ran into this gentleman outside of the library in Clayton, NM; he told me that they had "sexy" books in there, but his daughter wouldn't let him check them out; his daughter , who was waiting in the car for him, concurred with this assessment..



this great guy manned the local fire station with his
iphone while the firemen were out for lunch, and took his duties very seriously; we discussed Trevor's situation, as well as wheelchair etiquette, there is much I didn't understand.

dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 09:50 PM   #3
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
When I first started considering this trip, my intent was to use it to raise support and awareness for Trevor’s situation, but I left town so quickly that I didn’t have time to put anything into motion. Imagine my surprise when, heading west across a desolate landscape towards Capulin, I encountered a car bearing Arkansas tags, stopped on the shoulder with emergency signals flashing; turns out the driver was a female driver was an opera singer from Little Rock(?), who sings in a metal band “Iron Tongue”(?), who had performed at a local fundraiser for Trevor shortly after his accident; she was on her way to Colorado after an extended stay in Italy undergoing voice training. This chance meeting caused me to consider that my journey wasn’t just some middle aged lark, and that there were possibly some much larger forces in play, but what , I wondered? Some things can only be discovered by moving forward, so after a brief jaunt to the top of the volcano, I crossed into Colorado at Trinidad.

the angelic opera singer:



at the top of the Capulin Volcano, 8800'



stopped in Raton to dry out, spoke with this lady concerning the nature of my journey; before I could realize what she was doing, she had spit on her thumb and made the sign of the cross on my forehead; turns out she was a gypsy, and was blessing my quest.

dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 09:57 PM   #4
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
Before I left home, I had checked the local forecasts across my route and determined that my Tourmaster Draft jacket and Sliders mesh pants would be adequate gear to get me through Colorado into Utah, a conclusion I would soon regret. As I started climbing into the Rockies, the mornings were so cold I was almost ready to cut my own throat just to feel the warm blood on my hands, and icy thunderstorms seem to be on tap every afternoon at precisely 1:30. I met up with some fellow vagabonds in Salida, a pair of Harold and Kumar-types who had left Dumas, Arkansas on DR650s a couple of weeks prior to my departure; both had quit their jobs and were endeavoring to travel around the west on 30.00 a day until their money ran out. They were aware of Trevor’s story, and had stopped to meet him on their way through town, to “get their mojo working” before their trip. They turned out to be very congenial and capable traveling companions as we headed west towards Montrose. We stopped at Monarch Pass to take in the view; flatlanders from the Mississippi delta don’t get a chance to see vistas like this very often. I wanted to take the tramway to the top of the mountain, but the 10.00 fee would have wrecked the budget of the Dumas boys. We ere preparing to leave when a Vstrom rider informed us that there was an unimproved dirt road snaking up the back of the mountain, built to service the tram station. Dirt road? Up the back of a mountain? On a fully loaded Nighthawk? What could possibly go wrong? Turns out that it was one of the most incredible moments of my life, high adventure not because of the choice of equipment, but in spite of it; adventure riding without adversity is just touring.







dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 10:03 PM   #5
pistole
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2013
Location: earth
Oddometer: 672
Quote:
Originally Posted by dogjaw View Post
a pair of Harold and Kumar-types


pictures , please !

great writing.

.
pistole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 10:07 PM   #6
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
After a brief stop in Gunnison, we headed west to see an old buddy in Montrose; Kyle is the poster boy for living life large, an Arkansas native who shucked it all a few years ago and carved out a better life for himself out west. The world is a better place just knowing that some people are in it, whether you get a chance to interact with them or not, Kyle is one of those people. We spent the next four days being escorted around the area by Kyle and his retired Navy riding partner Goose, a crotchety old codger with a heart of gold and riding skills to match. After spirited romps to the North Rim of the Black Canyon, Telluride, Silverton, Durango, etc, we made a day trip into Gateway, CO; mile after mile of perfectly radiused curves, bottomless red rock canyons on one side and soaring mountain peaks on the other, a place so incredible it prompted me to stop and write “Gateway is a sanctuary so incredible and impregnable as to prevent any mundane, petty thoughts from entering”. If you have questions, Gateway has the answers. It was here that I had an encounter with a truck and trailer passing a car illegally on blind curve, no guardrail on my right, a yawning canyon below. Going to my left meant going into his grill, so I held it on the fogline and prayed for deliverance, or at least a quick death, serious injury wasn‘t an option; the truck whipped back into his lane so violently that is caused his trailer to whiplash even further into my lane, so close that I felt his trailer clip my left boot. I held my line and shot the gap at speed, but the shock of facing what I was certain was my last breath was such that I threw up in my helmet. The highs and lows of that day will never be forgotten.



Hermit's Rest


North Rim of the Black Canyon:











dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 10:17 PM   #7
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
as requested, Harold and Kumar with "Goose", the Dumas boys were on their own separate quest...




Kyle, the ultimate fun pig:





me and the Dumas boys in Silverton, me in my Trevor shirt, more on this later:



to be continued; a bike change is in the cards...
dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 10:19 PM   #8
Comrade Art
Working stiff
 
Comrade Art's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2006
Location: Oregon
Oddometer: 492
Good job organizing Trevor's Support ride:
http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...=831775&page=3
Enjoying the pics and keep posting
__________________
Vietnam Adventure
Oregon BDR

"All human beings by nature desire to know" - Aristotle
Comrade Art is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 10:40 PM   #9
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
before the bike change...

on a ride out of Ouray heading to Silverton, we passed a few cyclists heading up through what we would find out later were 10k foot passes, no guardrails, very scary stuff. While heading back across later that day, a blustery cold storm blew through the canyons, the lightning striking all around us adding significantly to the stress factor. When I stopped at an overlook to regain my nerve, I encountered one of the cyclists from earlier in the day, totally nonplussed by the storm, the climb, the danger, or much of anything at all.
Her name was Heather Andersen, and she had written a book " I Never Intended to be Brave", detailing her solo bicycle travels across Africa during a 6 year stint in the Peace Corp. Compared with that experience, a jaunt through the Rockies must have seemed pretty boring; she was a very impressive lady.



dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 10:43 PM   #10
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
Quote:
Originally Posted by Comrade Art View Post
Good job organizing Trevor's Support ride:
http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...=831775&page=3
Enjoying the pics and keep posting

thanks for the kind words; this ride eventually morphed into the sidecar ride for Trevor, the most memorable day of my life; please stay tuned!!

another "coincidence"... while I was staging my rides out of Montrose and posting pictures to FB so that those back home could somewhat follow my progress, I had no idea that Trevor's mother Pam is from Montrose, and was living there when she got the word that Trevor had been injured. The pictures I was posting were of her hometown.

dogjaw screwed with this post 12-16-2013 at 11:30 PM
dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 10:53 PM   #11
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
All of this incredible riding was causing some serious wear and tear on my humble Nighthawk; fork seals, chain and sprockets failing, rear tire wearing thin, all things I would have to consider before continuing west, or ultimately heading home, so I went to Davis Honda in Montrose to assess the damage. To make a long story short, I ended up trading the Hawk for a 2013 CB500X, transferred what gear I was able to fit into two dry bags and shipped the rest home via UPS. I then headed west across the LaSal mountains into Utah; the Dumas boys took this opportunity to return east towards home. To be honest, I was glad to be alone again; the Hebrew word “selah” means “pause and consider”, often difficult when riding with others. Sometimes only solitude will do.

Kyle and Goose helping me get the CB500X ready to head out:



Proud papa, but what was I doing buying a 500 to finish out a 4000 mile trip?







dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 11:05 PM   #12
pistole
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2013
Location: earth
Oddometer: 672
mama !!



.
pistole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 11:18 PM   #13
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
I had high hopes for Moab, as I had visited there years ago on a mountain biking trip and have always remembered it fondly as a small town mecca of adventure sports. Upon arriving in town, it seemed that hordes of Harleys had taken over the landscape. I used to view these packs of slow moving motorcycles as “Milwaukee roadblocks”, now I see them as “rolling billboards”; these boys sure love their branded merchandise. On a high speed run through Arches National Park, the 500X performed flawlessly, carving up the corners with scalpel like precision and making short work of the larger heavier bikes. Less than one day in the saddle and I feel like we’ve been together for years. Shortly before sundown I spotted two heavily modified KLR650s preparing to camp on the edge of the desert; they were also from Arkansas. They recognized the Trevor tshirt I was wearing as it had been designed by a friend of theirs, Blip Workshop, a graphic designer and custom bike builder in Houston, TX. Just another chance meeting over a thousand miles away from home? I think not; all things work together for the good…

Brian and Chad from Texarkana, supporters of the cause:










dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2013, 11:26 PM   #14
dogjaw OP
plays well alone
 
dogjaw's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
Oddometer: 2,738
If you haven't seen it already, you really need to see the video Trevor put together shortly before he was struck down; it will give you a better idea what a force of nature he was and still is, and what prompted me to shuck it all and go ride...


http://youtu.be/k535lYv2xok

if someone can embed, please do... and thanks.
dogjaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2013, 03:07 AM   #15
Pantah
Red Sox Nation
 
Pantah's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2004
Location: India Wharf
Oddometer: 10,034
kerncountykid:

I remember his RR. Sorry to hear such a gifted young man was struck down. Thanks for posting his tape. Very good music. Congrats on the new bike. Now all you need is some electrics, heated grips and some other comforts.
__________________
Straight ahead and faster -Bo Weaver 1970
"There I was..." -Griffin Niner Three Hotel
"One day closer to a parade..." Jonny Gomes, spring training 2013
Pantah 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 04:29 PM.


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