Motorcycling North America

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Road Shadow Self PortraitWe’re gallivanting North America. It’s official. Our September trip down the Pacific Coast, November loop of Arizona, and the last two weeks spent in the Southwest have lead us here – to road maps, an atlas, and national park books… planning a motorcycle trip across the United States and Canada.

Our plan is to continue where we left off in Houston, across the southern states and then north up the Blue Ridge Parkway and beyond. We haven’t planned much yet, but we want to head up to the Canadian Maritimes and after that we’ll start heading west again.

Organ Pipe Cactus NM Tiger Sunset
Sunset at Camp – Organ Pipe National Monument, Arizona

It won’t be a fast journey – after almost six weeks on the road we’re barely 1/4 of the way around the US, but there are some incredible pit stops in the works… and really, it’s not about speed.

A motorcycle trip is about the journey, the stops, the scenery, the old winding highways now bypassed by freeways. We will go the scenic route, we will detour, camp, and hike. We will get to know this continent.California CloudsThe thing about going by motorcycle instead of by car is that we are in the landscape. There are no walls and roof, no air conditioning or heat, no headrests or reading lights or DVD players.

There is the sky and road, the wind, a steadfast engine between our legs. We feel the heat of sun scorched August, the chill of autumn mornings, the calm of dusk, and oh, the smells. Fragrant apple fields in the Okanagan Valley, cottonwood trees flanking riverbanks, sagebrush and smoke, foggy forests of moss and pine, fields of cilantro and strawberries, hot pavement and rain, the ocean.

By motorcycle we get the sensory experience of the land and its life, the rhythms of day and weather and whatever is blossoming around us. Like backpacking made me appreciate miles by foot, riding on Jesse’s motorcycle with him has opened my eyes to a new kind of feeling the miles.

Organ Pipe Cactus NM morning drive
My view from the back, over shoulders, around a helmet, in mirrors & through a camera

I can’t wait to continue our trip around the country in April. I’ll be posting a lot about what we see, the national parks we visit, and more videos of our adventures, so stay tuned!

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