My buddy on the BMW is an avid hiker and getting to the Top of Texas was high on his list! So it was pretty easy to talk him into riding with me to visit my wife in West Texas, where she is building the our new world headquarters. We hiked the Guadalupe Peak Trail of the Guadalupe National Park: "On a clear day, the view from the "Top of Texas" (8,749 feet, or 2,667 meters) is outstanding. The trail is very steep, but is well established. Some areas are exposed to cliff edges. It is rated strenuous, with 3,000 feet of elevation gain. The round trip distance is 8.4 miles, and generally takes 6-8 hours." As we left Junction Texas, we rode through a couple hours of rain, which the BMW shrugged off - its a 90,000 mile bike! However, the Ninja 1000 lacks substantial fenders which allows a lot of road grime to soil the bike and the luggage. There is a fender extension available for the front, but I'll have to rig some sort of rear mud flap. 550 miles later we arrived at our accommodations in West Texas. The following morning we brushed the frost off our bike's seats, plugged in electric vests and donned winter gloves and 40 miles later the mountain was upon us. Running and bicycle riding has kept my buddy fit so we tackled the trail at a brisk pace, making it to the top in 2.5 hours. We took a couple of breathers on the way up. Here is El Capitan from the back side, quite a contrast to the front which is a cliff! I was pretty stoked to be on top of the mountain that we will be viewing from our living room once I retire! The morning after our hike my buddy heads home - edging the BMW to the 100,000 mile mark. My morning started pretty early - I had 550 miles to cover that day. Shadowy riders on a shadowy planet. The road behind - may it never end.