Saturday May 9th Brad Scott and I rode to Orem and met up with about 140 motorcycle riders to raise money for a scholarship fund, money to aid deceased veterans families and assist hospitalized recuperating veterans. This was the 5th such ride named for a soldier who died April 2004. Brandon's parents received the news the day before Mothers Day 2004. His Dad started the ride in 2005.
Just before the departure time it was thrilling to hear that many motorcycles start up, the roar of engines bouncing off the buildings surrounding us. At about 10:30 we took off with police escorts to get us out of town and up to Provo canyon. I have never understood what the hurray is on rides like this. On the previous rides Donna and I or just myself had been on it was the same way. Speed limits just didn't matter. And guess who was in the lead of the group, SL Country Sheriffs' Deputies on motorcycles. Riding up the canyon could have been a real enjoyable ride if not for the speed, 10-15 mph over the limit. When we reached Daniel's pass the group stopped for drinks, snacks and of course a restroom break, maybe a half hour. At this time Brad and I left with the first group, maybe 40-50 bikes, it is a quite the site to see them winding the road ahead of you. This leg the road was nice and speed rarely hit 65 mph, a more leisurely speed. I guess this was the Indian Canyon section of the ride toward Duschene. Duschene was our gas stop and of course the other things as well. Brad and I looked at a very sleek fully loaded Victory motorcycle (too much plastic/fiberglass for me), a bike custom painted with the US Flag, Mt Rushmore, F16s and an Air Force Emblem on the tank. The fenders were painted with the Flag as well. There were choppers, bunches of Harley's and goldwings, royal star yamahas and even one Dukatti. We we left Duschene Brad and I were in the last group near the rear of the group. The ride was OK as we headed toward Helper and US 191/6 to head back to Orem. I guess at some point someone decided we were to far behind the other groups so we took a detour to shave time and miles off the ride. The road was hell on wheels, very rough with shallow pot holes and very bad shoulders. About a 1/2 half mile or so prior to reaching US 191/6 a rider went off the road and ended up in the right shoulder in some very soft dirt/sand. He appeared to be OK from where we were. They tried push starting his bike but when we finally left I don't think they had it started. When we turned onto the "main" road we were a couple miles or so from "Hilltop". I have probably passed that gas station/store 200 times in my life and never knew it was a ghost town. Nichole was helping Carter do a report on Utah county and dug out that info from the Internet. Butch Cassidy had passed through there several times during the wild bunch era. We finally arrived back at the Golden Coral restaurant 45-50 minutes later than the goal. The owner of the GC donated lunch and $5000 to the scholarship fund. There were other sponsors so I guess Brandon's Father and Mother were happy about the results of the event.
With the exception of the last twenty miles I was cold most of the time. Polys, jeans and chaps didn't keep the legs warm. My vest and vented leather jacket were not the best choice for keeping the upper body warm, though on the ride from Orem to home they were perfect. I felt for the guy on the Ducatti, light jacket, jeans and athletic shoes. I will never ride on I-15 between the 53rd and 90th south street exits again! The I-215/72nd south area is just to crazy unless you can stay in the HOV lane and even then I'm not sure it is safe in that area.
Good time, nice to ride with someone I know for a change and good to get off the seat after about 6 hours or so. Thanks Brad!!