March/April 2006
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Touring and Travel Articles

Virginia: Spirit Roads and Ghosts In Grey

Virginia: Spirit Roads and Ghosts In Grey

Have you ever been somewhere that seems to speak to you? You know, a special place that feels so comfortable and so right that you can't help but feel you belong there. Staying away is impossible and with each return the mystical region's sweet refrains strengthen and swell. Again and again, the grip tightens, drawing you in like an age-old siren song.
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Shamrock Tour® - North-eastern Vermont and Quebec Province

Shamrock Tour® - North-eastern Vermont and Quebec Province

Locals call it "Vermonter's Vermont" and the Northeast Kingdom (a term coined in the nineteen forties by US Senator George Aiken). The most remote and most beautiful part of the Green Mountain State, the Kingdom has successfully dodged the massive tourist development that's entrenched elsewhere in the state. Quintessentially Vermont, with picturesque villages, covered bridges, and green rolling hills dotted with old farms, it's the perfect place for two-wheeled merriment. Best of all, the undulating topography remains unsullied by tourists, and on our late August ride, nary a Winnebago raised its ugly grille.
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Crop Country & Chicago Skyscrapers

Crop Country & Chicago Skyscrapers

Cincinnati's morning traffic pattern is no different from any other large city. Dive in headfirst or stay out of the way, the choice is yours. Luckily, we have the luxury of exercising the latter. After lingering over coffee and giving the rush-hour loonies time to find their assigned parking stalls, we deem it safe to hit the road. Heading out of town, westbound Highway 52 and Interstate 74 share the same space, but thankfully that doesn't last for long.
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South Argentina: A Journey into Patagonia

South Argentina: A Journey into Patagonia

The view from the plane was breathtaking: a seemingly infinite range of sharp, snowy summits stretched toward the earth's curve, among them the magnificence of Aconcagua, the highest peak in the Americas. Farther east, the land abruptly flattens out, revealing the vast, fertile expanses of the pampas, the lush green pastures that fatten untold herds of Argentine beef.
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Viva Las Vegas

Viva Las Vegas

Las Vegas. The Strip. The showgirls. The strippers. Las Vegas. Sequins. Sin. Sex. Céline. Las Vegas. Glitz. Glamour. Dan Tanna. Las Vegas. Neon and Newton. Penn & Teller. Tigers and sharks... This pioneer town has had its share of ups and downs, from one incarnation as the mid-twentieth-century, mob-manipulated, Rat Pack playground, to another as a tired, passé, 70s has-been, and now to its resurgence as a dazzling Disneyland for adults.
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UK: Going Coastal in Southern England

UK: Going Coastal in Southern England

"Dear little Bognor" is how Queen Victoria referred to this Sussex seaside town, which later awarded itself the suffix Regis ("of the King") after George V convalesced there in 1928. But he mustn't have enjoyed his stay very much. In 1935, he lay dying and his physician, trying to cheer the monarch, was heard to suggest, "Your Majesty will soon be well enough to visit Bognor." The King's reply, his last words, "Bugger Bognor!"
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North Carolina: Slow Down, Look Around

North Carolina: Slow Down, Look Around

We never stopped at South of the Border when I was a kid. Dad was one of those psycho travelers. Bladders could be emptied only when fuel tanks were filled. Motels were always dark places and I only saw them during midnight check-ins and pre-dawn check-outs. Mom was sympathetic about the long hours, but obviously she didn't share a young boy's notion of roadside cool. No matter my arguments, Pedro remained tacky, and my curiosity surrounding places like Waffle House and Stuckey's would have to wait years to be satisfied. As it turns out, she was right on most counts, but I'll always be a sucker for chili on my hash browns.
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Motorcycle Reviews

Victory Hammer

Victory Hammer

Riding a motorcycle is cool. We all know that to be true. But riding a motorcycle that truly turns heads, that adds a whole new dimension to the feeling. Blasting down the highway somewhere outside of Minneapolis on Victory's '06 Hammer, I'm noticing the looks. Yep, they're coming hot and heavy, and I'm loving it. Sure, it's a neat sensation, but I'm certainly not what's commanding their attention. It's definitely the bike and, oh my, what a bike it is.
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Let's Get It On

Let's Get It On

No punches pulled, it's the stuff of which classic fights are made. In one corner we have the thoroughbred champion, a machine many regard as the finest road-going sport bike in the world today. Its clean, svelte bodywork transmits a menacing sense of purpose and a stylistic beauty that leaves jaws askew and chins lying on the pavement. Across the ring, a lean, mean street-fighting machine awaits with no fancy robe hiding its sinewy lines and the obvious air of brutality assuring everyone involved that all comers - win, lose, or draw - will receive a thrashing. Go ahead and hum the theme from Rocky because these two Italian stallions are ready to rumble.
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Total Recall

Total Recall

A life is a warehouse of sensations and experiences best opened and shared with as many others as possible. Whatever we choose to stock the warehouse shelves with indicates our particular passions and often leads us back to our inner selves. For me, the vintage bike experience holds a prominent place in "the building." Each time I ride one my senses go into overdrive, hauling up recollections of time, place, smell, sound and even taste. Good, bad or indifferent, any time I set off on a vintage bike, I ride to recall the way things were.
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Harley-Davidson FLHTCUI  Ultra Classic Electra Glide - Long-term Evaluation

Harley-Davidson FLHTCUI Ultra Classic Electra Glide - Long-term Evaluation

My first ride on the 2005 Harley-Davidson Ultra Classic was one of those dreaded, droning highway runs on I-95/85 - from the H-D factory in York, Pennsylvania, to the RoadRUNNER offices in North Carolina - and although the plush seat and excellent sound system certainly eased the boredom of Mr. Eisenhower's "broader ribbons," testing the bike's back-road touring prowess would have to wait. Fortunately, breaking free of the office confines around here doesn't require a note from your doctor; it's part of the job description.
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Also in this issue ...

  • Vintage Motorcycle Mania At Mid-Ohio [Read]
  • Getting Wired [Read]
  • Streetmasters Motorcycle Workshops [Read]