March/April 2013
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Touring and Travel Articles

California: Hot Springs the Hard Way

California: Hot Springs the Hard Way

Seeking a hot spring while the temperature in Los Angeles boils over 100 degrees might seem like a rather strange journey, but my loaner BMW F 800 GS and I 
are off to do just that in the 
Eastern Sierra. Let’s go!
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Exeter, Rhode Island Shamrock Tour®: Twisting the Throttle through the Ocean State

Exeter, Rhode Island Shamrock Tour®: Twisting the Throttle through the Ocean State

Although Rhode Island is the smallest state, it offers lots of historic sites to make it a good Shamrock Tour® base. This tiny piece of America is only 37 miles wide and 
48 miles long, so trips into 
neighboring New England 
are unavoidable and 
certainly well worth it. Some interesting facts to note about the little state: Governor 
Lincoln Chafee is from an 
Independent Party making it the only state without a Democratic or Republican governor, prostitution 
was legal until 2009, and 
unfortunately, The Drunken Clam bar doesn’t really exist, at least the way it’s portrayed in Family Guy’s world.
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Texas: Hill Country

Texas: Hill Country

Few would deny that digging into the ground of the 28th state would yield anything less than red, white, and blue dirt, so rolling into this part of the country on anything other than a Harley can feel a little like going to a cross-stitch party without any needles. That is until you approach a town whose welcome sign says, “Willkommen.” 
You immediately know you are not in Kansas anymore . . . 
and perhaps not even in Texas!
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West Virginia Civil War Tour: Riding through History

West Virginia Civil War Tour: Riding through History

Tensions between the aristocratic, plantation-based culture of 
eastern Virginia and the 
independently minded mountain people of western Virginia had simmered for years prior to the Civil War. Sharp disagreements over slavery, voting rights, and economic issues finally boiled over when Virginia seceded and federal troops moved rapidly into this mountainous region to secure it for the Union. The ensuing armed struggle resulted in the state of West Virginia being admitted into the Union on June 20, 1863.
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Switzerland: Swiss Dream Ride

Switzerland: Swiss Dream Ride

Playing cards were fastened to the frame of my bicycle with clothespins. I’d packed a lunch and tucked my Heidi book into my pants. As the cards hit 
the spokes, my bike made a 
satisfying roar down the street, and I felt certain that I would be in Switzerland by lunchtime. 
I had no idea that I would one day ride among the beautiful Edelweiss flowers for real.
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World Travelers-Cambodia and Laos: Mekong Meanderings

World Travelers-Cambodia and Laos: Mekong Meanderings

With Pakistan, India, and Nepal behind us, we are flying low over Thailand’s hedonistic capital, Bangkok. Through the small oval window, we can see mile upon mile of rice paddy fields; the entire shimmering 
landscape is still submerged after recent heavy rain. Shantytowns intermingle with newer structures until 
all we can see are the concrete skyscrapers and the immense superhighways that sweep across the city.
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Motorcycle Reviews

2013 Yamaha FJR1300A: A Sportbike for Grownups!

2013 Yamaha FJR1300A: A Sportbike for Grownups!

Yamaha has launched its FJR1300A model for 2013 with some notable improvements that dyed-in-the-ballistic-nylon aficionados of sport touring should appreciate.
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2013 Honda Lineup

2013 Honda Lineup

At a time when consumers are pinching every penny, 
some companies respond by doing the same, a few focus on bringing in repeat business, and others ramp up advertising. 
A brave handful will put all their chips on the table by 
offering a variety of original products.
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2012 Can-Am Spyder RT Limited: Three Wheels Across America

2012 Can-Am Spyder RT Limited: Three Wheels Across America

Bombardier Recreational Products recently loaned us two of their top-of-the-line Can-Am touring models 
and a trailer for an exhaustive cross-country test. 
Starting in St. Louis, MO, we followed the Lewis and Clark Trail more than 3,000 miles to Oregon’s Pacific Coast. In addition to fluctuations in weather and 
topography, we experienced a wide variety of riding 
conditions on the secondary paved roads.
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