First motorcycle and First Adventure ride

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by Ridin'nFishin, Jan 4, 2019.

  1. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    Hi, my name is Calvin, I am a motorcycle addict and have been since I was a kid. I do not seek any help for this addiction, it is my life!

    It all started before the TV show Then Came Bronson first came out in 1969 but was magnified with this show. My family watched this show together never missing a single episode. My oldest brother Lonnie who was 5 years older had a Honda 305 Dream and his best friend Joe had a BSA 650, I rode on the back with both of them. My friends had mini bikes that they let me ride. I had to have a motorcycle! I thought it was a shoe in for me to get my own bike. We were watching Then Came Bronson one night and during a commercial I finally worked up the nerve to ask my dad if I could buy a motorcycle. He let me know right away, hell no…….., I was crushed, but my dreams were not.

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    Honda 305 Dream Lonnie's bike was exactly like this one.
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    BSA 650, Joe's bike looked similar to this.
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    My best friend Brett who’s dad worked with my dad had a Vespa scooter, 3 gears that shifted on the handlebar. We had fun riding that scooter. Then Brett got a Suzuki Trailhopper 50. My other friend Andy had a Honda Mini Trail 50. Kevin who lived across the street and I had already been talking motorcycles and we both wanted the same bike. His parents let him and his brother Keith get the bike we had been talking about only a short time after I had asked my dad. I wanted it even more now but what was I to do, my dad made it very clear; no motorcycle! I think with Brett’s dad’s influence and my oldest brother talking to my dad that he changed his mind. Dad told me and my brother Gary who was 1.5 years older we could buy a motorcycle. I was so excited and knew exactly what bike I was going to buy. I ran to my room and came back with a brochure to show my dad. My brother and I both had been working as a paperboys for a few of years saving our money. We bought our first motorcycle together, but that only lasted a couple of months. I bought him out and he bought another motorcycle, a Suzuki 80.

    Vespa
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    Suzuki Trailhopper 50
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    Honda Mini Trail 50
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    Suzuki 80
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    My first motorcycle was a 1971 Kawasaki Dyna-Mite 75. It was bad ass and I could out run everything up 90cc’s in a 2 block race, start to stop because we lived on a dead end street. It was official I love Kawasaki motorcycles. I had a plan for my next bike when I turned 15.

    1971 Kawasaki Dyna-Mite 75
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    Me on the right on my Kawasaki 75, Gary on his Suzuki 80 with Lonnie"s car in the background. Do you know what kind of care it is?
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    I didn’t know it at the time what this bike was going to do for me but I did know it was only the beginning.

    My dad had a camp on the Neches River where we learned to hunt and fish, it was south of B A Steinhagen Lake just across the river from Barlow Lake Estates. It was way back in the woods and the roads to get there were mostly graded roads with the last mile being a little more than a trail you could drive a vehicle on. It was full of mud holes and could be hard to get to, especially when it rained. Oh things were changing now. Brett’s dad had a camp on the other side of the river and about 11 miles farther north just outside the community of Dam B, not on the river but out in the woods and easier to get to. It was right outside of a Magnolia Ridge State Park on CR 3709.

    Do you see where this is going? That’s right!

    His dad and my dad scheduled their vacations so that we would could spend a week at our camp riding on the trails and dirt roads, then a week at their camp doing the same. Our camp was on a steep bank of the Neches River, we had a 12 ft aluminum boat with a 6 hp Mercury outboard. The plan was for us to go up river a couple of hundred yards where the bank was not as steep, load our motorcycles one at a time in the boat go across the river to the sandbar, get the bikes up the not so steep bank. We spent the week riding and when Saturday morning came is was time to get ready and go. We packed our bags and started moving the boat into position to load our bikes and take them across the river. It was a chore that had us all worried that something might happen to one of our bikes and it would fall in the water. It took both my brothers, Brett and myself to make the two trips across the swift moving current of the Neches River safely.

    Lonnie rode with us to show us the way out to the highway where Brett’s dad was to pick us up. We made the round trip and dropped my brother back at the river where Gary waited with the boat. With our bags packed on our little motorcycles Brett and I turned around and waved goodbye. There was no turning back, the feeling we had was incredible, we were on our own, we were free to discover and explore, we were on our First Adventure Ride!

    I’m 61 now and this is a time in my life that is forever etched in my mind. I am very thankful for my family and friends for this experience, without all of them it would have never taken place.

    I hope you enjoyed my trip down memory lane and it may prompt you to include yours.

    Calvin
    #1
  2. Amphib

    Amphib Been here awhile

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    Thank you for sharing some of your history with us. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
    #2
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  3. RebornRider

    RebornRider Been here awhile

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    Great read! I'm 67 and I remember that simpler, magical life. :-) Thanks for the trip back.
    g
    #3
  4. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    Thanks guys, I have been thinking about writing this for a while and finally got around to it. A friend of mine asked me how I remember all the details. The answer was easy, its my life! I have had a lot of good times with motorcycles, family and friends.
    #4
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  5. WRC51

    WRC51 Long timer

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    Beautiful story similar to my youth. 1966 Chevy Chevelle is the car in the back round of the photo.
    #5
  6. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    Nice try but it is not a 66 Chevelle. I hate to give it up only after on guess.
    #6
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  7. Mikeburndirt

    Mikeburndirt n00b

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    I don't have an answer for the car but the bikes are masterpieces!
    Do you still own this collection today? Photos look very current. They are absolutely beautiful!
    Nice job on this report, the road goes on forever and the ride never ends....
    #7
  8. bigblockbarry

    bigblockbarry Random Misfire

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    Those are good memories. My Dad had bikes when I was a kid and it was the greatest thing getting to ride on the back with him. I'm going to guess,since it's a post car, 66 Tempest.
    #8
  9. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    I just googled the pictures except the on with me in it. I wish that I had my first bike! Thanks and I agree, the road goes on forever and the ride never ends.
    #9
  10. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    My Dad didn't ride and thought they were dangerous. I wish he did then I have been able to get a bike sooner, better late than never.

    Not a Tempest, sorry. Getting closer.
    #10
  11. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    I just remembered that I forgot to included how we got our bikes to our camp.

    My brother removed the back seat out of his car you see in the picture and loaded both of ours bikes, we could not wait to unload them. Brett's dad had a Ford truck.
    #11
  12. JB2

    JB2 Dirt Of The Earth

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    Ridin'nFishin - Good thread. Hoping you are still racking up the miles on a bike. One of the best conversations among fellow riders is learning "how it all began".

    Like others I found some parallels with your story of "how it all began". I'm 60 and I started riding at age nine. I had influences like my Dad's stack of motorcycle magazines, Then Came Bronson, and Easyriders. My deterrent was my Mom. Dad knew I was already riding the neighbor's minibikes when she was gone. He played a good game of chess and bought himself a Honda Super 90 then started building a minibike for me under the guise it wouldn't go very fast and he'd ride along to keep an eye on me. Well, I firmly crashed the minibike less than a year after it was finished and inherited his Honda since he had bought a second one.

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    The rest, as they say, is history. By the time I graduated high school I was already on my fifth bike. I never had a car when I lived at home. I bought a used Yamaha 175 Enduro as my first "legal-on-the street" car when I turned 16. My wife had a '68 Cutlass when we got married at age 18 so it was my real, first car. :D

    I had a few years off from motorcycle ownership as we started a family and purchased a home all before the age of 20. Not long after I jumped back into the frying pan with the purchase of a 1972 XLCH. Dad had already crossed the bridge and was doing some pretty heavy duty long distance touring on BMW's, a Yamaha 850 Special and then a HD Ultra Classic. As my ability to purchase better and more reliable motorcycles Dad and I spent most of our vacation time together on the road. Up until he passed away our travels became more intense and further from our homes. We used to think a days ride from home was getting out there. By the time he left us we were thinking that 3-4 days away from home was a pretty grand adventure.

    As I look back, I know now I was the luckiest kid in Blackford County whose dad planted the seed of motorcycle travel and stoked the fires to red-hot. At age 60 there's not to many places in the USA I haven't been. There's not a place I've been in a car that I haven't been on a bike. However, there are thousands of places and highways that I have never been in car... it has always been about the bike trips, always.

    Miss ya pop!

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    Ride Safe, JB2
    #12
  13. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    Thanks JB2,

    I am still riding and doing as many out of state trips as possible, did 3 last year and plan on more this year. I think that I may try to write down all the motorcycles I have owned and ridden with little info about each along with pictures.

    What bike is that in the picture you are sitting on?

    I wish that I could have ridden with my dad like you did, great story and I like the sticker on your bike.
    #13
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  14. JB2

    JB2 Dirt Of The Earth

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    Ridin'nFishin - The bike that I am sitting on is the minibike that Dad built. The picture was taken in 1969 just a few months before I totaled the bike. Totaled in the sense the front fork and frame were bent. We straightened it up some but he figured I was already ready for his Honda S90 so the chopper got parked in the barn until I traded it for a Honda 160 Flat Tracker a couple years later. Had I known then what I know now I would have kept that hand-built bike. But, I was young and dumb and Dad was pretty proud that I was wheeling and dealing in motorcycles at the age of 12.

    The sticker embodies a half million miles of stories both in the friends we made together, the places we went and the friends I've made since then. It resides on my newest squeeze, a 2017 SCR950.

    This is the last picture of our bikes together taken May 25th 2002. I'm on the red VFR, he's on the black Electra Glide Sport. Fifty miles later it was all over. I won't post the gore but here's a LINK to how it all ended... and began again.

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    Now that I'm getting older I given a lot of thought to your idea about writing down my life list of bikes and the trips I took on them. I've done good about taking photos over the years, writing down some basic details and hanging on to all the receipts from each adventure. But, as I started going through all of it recently documenting 50 years of riding seems almost impossible. I'm still riding so I'm still adding to the drawers full of photos and receipts.

    Thanks again for a cool thread!
    #14
  15. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    JB2

    Thank you for posting up here!

    I'm a KLR fan but don't own one now. I sold my KLR650 and DR650 to build my Versys Adventure.
    [​IMG]
    #15
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  16. JB2

    JB2 Dirt Of The Earth

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    Ridin'nFishin - Same here. I don't own a KLR now but I loved that bike. I may buy one of the last ones just to have something more dirt worthy than the Yamaha Scrambler. Your Versys looks like a great setup. I always thought if Kawasaki upgraded the KLR it should be with a vertical-twin and a lot more power.
    #16
  17. BlueM00se

    BlueM00se 'Cuse LAX Fan Supporter

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    Thanks for bringing back some memories! My first ride was a '73 Kawasaki MT-1. It was the hill climb champ in the fields and small quarries around my house growing up.
    #17
  18. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    I got my Versys from KLRsys. He built 3 KLR’s with the p-twin. I got to ride the first one, awesome bike. Versys modified like I have makes for a great little Adventure Bike.
    #18
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  19. Ridin'nFishin

    Ridin'nFishin Been here awhile Supporter

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    Yes sir. Fast little bike.
    #19
  20. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    Chevy Belmont?
    #20