A real Biker Chick at 69
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
I Have been learning to drive a CanAm Spyder Roadster (a Motorcycle) for the last few months. On August 10th the day after my 69th birthday I did my first solo ride of 85 miles. My husband had been been my passenger on all rides except for some I did in parking lot training. He had been wondering if I would remember the sequences of things when I was on my own.
This past weekend we went to the Arkansas State CMA Motorcycle Rally in Harrison, Arkansas which is about 225 miles on the route we took which had 2 and 4 lanes and Interstate driving partly through mountains of northern Arkansas. The strangest feeling part of the trip is being on a motorcycle in a tunnel through a mountain. Going I drove the first 80 miles of the trip and my husband drove the rest of the way there. I was the navigator reading map, checking GPS and also checking my iPad for the map with gps when we stopped.
Coming home from the rally I drove about 150 miles, the first and last segments. I have got to do more exercises on my left shoulder and my left forearm. I have to have a break to relax my arm. Our Can Am is semi-automatic so I do use my left hand for the gear changing and some other things and my right to control the speed. My back doesn't bother me riding or driving the CanAm, which surprised me a little about driving it. We do make at least short stops at about 60-80 miles apart.
My husband calls me a biker chick and biker grandma. He has been riding motorcycles since he was sixteen (he is now 73) and I never rode on a bike until about 7 years ago a year after he got a motorcycle again. We have been married 9 years now but he didn't get a motorcycle again until 10 months after we got married. Then a year later he got a Honda VTX and rode that until he hurt his ankle a year and a half ago walking in loose gravel. I didn't feel comfortable with him thinking about riding after that or me behind him, because he was also starting to have some bad back pain..
The CanAm Spyder Roadster has three wheels, two in front and one in the back. It doesn't handle like the three wheel trike or the traditional two-wheel motorcycle. It is very much computerized and won't allow you to do some things.