I am starting a series of Big Bend trips that I will put up in order of occurrence. Not exactly in my back yard, but close enough that I get down there often, Big Bend occupies a large corner of my wayward heart. Perhaps it is the tension of the past and the future, colliding within my mind, that conspires to draw me back. The wild west and the Republic of Texas are alive and well in the hearts and minds of many of the inhabitants of the region. Many of the folks could be classified as, at least, a bit crazy. I am lucky enough to work as a historical preservation architect, and being self employed is the icing on the cake. Having projects in Pecos, Fort Stockton, Ozona, Big Spring and hopefully Colorado City and Sonora soon, that keep West Texas in the forefront of my mind and Big Bend just over the horizon, doesn’t hurt. I often manage to set up meetings that conspire to align with or cause trips to the Big Bend region. Not all the photographs taken will be done so from a bike, but the majority will. Big Bend is both large and small. Some areas are better experienced behind the wheel of a cage, because of the constraints of time. Some areas can only be experienced on foot. Many areas defy time and can only be experienced over the course of multiple visits. I will try and weave a story line of characters that will introduce you to the folks I find along the trail. As an introduction I will start with myself ... As the sig line indicates, I am Tony Eeds aka Teeds aka Dad aka Grandpa. Soon to be 56 years young, I have been riding bikes for many many years ... 36 and counting. Like many of us, I got wrapped up in raising kids and away from bikes for a period. I purchased my first "modern" bike in 1999, and my first dual sport in 2005. I have walked thousands of miles carrying backpacks, paddled the same on quiet water, as well as climbed in Colorado and elsewhere, so the outdoors is my friend. I get there every chance I can. My dual sport has become my ticket to adventure, in a region that has long recharged my soul. Sadly, I first visited Big Bend in 1986. Already 35, I had waited a long time to finally get there. Big Bend lived up to my every dream. In 1991, a gathering started that continues to this day. The last week of every year is "reserved" for Big Bend. A gathering of friends that have become as comfortable as old shoes, this is not a riding trip, rather a trip of true and lasting friends. Scott and I made the first trip in 1991 and the cast of characters has grown, as the legend has grown. This is my all time favorite photo of those trips. Taken just before dawn, it captures the mood of why we go better than any other of the thousands, that I have taken. Scott is on the far left. Here’s to you buddy! A guy could not ask for a better friend! After wadding up myself in Mexico in January, I was wary about my knees. Self doubt was creeping into my soul. Am I too old and out of shape? Is motorcycling a sport of younger people? In the Mexico Intervention, everyone conspired to convince me that my XR650R was too big for me to handle. Now truthfully, I already knew that, but macho kept me on the bike. Perfectly suited for rapid assaults on the likes of Baja, sans extraneous weight and gear, my XR-R does not suit me as a DS "tour" bike. I will not rehash my feelings, as they can be found in the Intervention. So much for introduction ... on with the show!!