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Topic: My best riding buddy has given up motorcycles  (Read 22547 times)

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« on: June 30, 2016, 11:01:24 am »

I've resisted writing a "trip report" due to the outcome of that last trip. Those of you that went to the WCRM met my buddy, Steve. He and I have been riding together almost twenty-five years. Tens of thousands of miles together.

A couple of weeks ago I got some free time so we decided to meet in the Lake Powell, UT area. He left from the Gunnison, CO area and I from So Cal. Sorry I missed you Stealth I was in a hurry!! To make a long story short we had a typically great time. 1,996 miles for me in five days which included a couple of days just hanging around in the mountains. On the way home he accompanied me from Gunnison through Lake City and over Wolf Creek Pass. We camped in an RV Park outside of Pagosa Springs which we've camped at before. The next morning he went East and I West. I didn't know it but ten minutes after us separating he hit a deer!!! He smashed his ankle very badly and had surgery the next day in Pagosa Springs. The Orthopod in Montrose tells him that he may lose his foot.

He's been really down and suggested last week that after fifty years of riding he may hang it up. Yesterday he called and told me he has made the decision. Selling all his bikes, trailers and gear.


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« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2016, 11:56:04 am »

As you get older, the question isn't IF you will quit riding but when. Oh, there are those who would say when you pry their cold dead fingers etc. But in reality, that isn't reality.

Steve, seemed like a very nice fellow with a fairly storied riding past. Very sorry to hear that a forest rat will end his riding. But who knows? That is a reasonable reaction to what he has been through and is going through. Who knows how he will feel next spring or the spring after?

Give him my best for a speedy recovery.
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« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2016, 03:58:13 pm »

Very sorry to hear this on all accounts. I can certainly understand Steve's position and I absolutely wish the best for him.

I'm getting to the age (66) where I am experiencing slight diminishing capacities that temper my riding style. Nothing serious, just typical aging stuff. I can still ride the way I want to but there will be a day (hopefully in many more years) where I'll hang it up as well. I did so with sport parachuting (I had been involved off & on since the early 70s) when I began to have depth of perception issues (I wore goggles that could not accommodate my corrective glasses). I never looked back.

Maybe Steve can take up skydiving?

Dan
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« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2016, 04:06:36 pm »

Thanks for the kind words Bubba and Dan and I will pass them along to him. Who knows, a year from now if things go well he may be ready to jump in again.

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« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2016, 04:18:24 pm »

Blue, is Steve the guy that came riding with us at Malibu a while back?  
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« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2016, 06:11:08 pm »


Blue, is Steve the guy that came riding with us at Malibu a while back?  


No, that was Elver. Elver was my best friend from grammar school and he taught me how to ride when we were fourteen or so!! Elver had not ridden in thirty years or more and had started riding again when we went for a ride with you and Lawn Dart. That's why we had to wait for him so much!!!

Steve is/was my best "riding" buddy.
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« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2016, 07:16:57 pm »

I've experienced a near melt-down myself about riding.  While no offs or crashes, I experienced way too many close calls in a short span and questioned my desire of riding and associating with such wonderful people over personal well-being.  

After making a rather rash decision, I sold all bikes a bit too soon.  Around four months later, I realized how much I loved something that I recently set free.  I'm 24k miles later with zero pucker moments.   Bigok

If Steve never comes back around, don't push him and enjoy your excellent memories together on 2-wheeled trips.  Who knows, he may have an eventual change of heart.  Smile

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« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2016, 08:13:32 pm »




No, that was Elver. Elver was my best friend from grammar school and he taught me how to ride when we were fourteen or so!! Elver had not ridden in thirty years or more and had started riding again when we went for a ride with you and Lawn Dart. That's why we had to wait for him so much!!!

Steve is/was my best "riding" buddy.



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« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2016, 01:18:28 am »

Sorry to hear about your buddy's deer encounter, surgery, and the possibility of further medical issues.

His being injured bad enough to require surgery is enough to bring any rider down.  Adding in the diagnosis of maybe losing the foot makes it even worse.  I can only imagine how depressed a rider would get  in facing what your buddy is going through.  Selling the bikes might be good in the short term till he finds out where he'll be in a few months, he can always reacquire new motorcycles, trailers and gear.  BTW, I had an accident in Colorado about the same time.  I was fortunate to not get hurt, but totaled my Ninja.  And looking at it on the trailer at home really got me down.  I've ridden my other bike since then, but the accident is still with me.

Wishing Steve the best of possibilities, including maybe riding again.
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« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2016, 03:14:28 am »

Almost exact same thing happened to my Dad, the only person I enjoyed riding with.  He was on a wing and not injured or crashed but it was enough for him to hang it up. Sold his ST13 and Wing after he got it fixed.
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« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2016, 09:44:49 am »

I remember Steve from WCRM. Sorry to hear about his accident - deer should be either dinner or gloves.

If this happened to me, I would be reluctant to sell stuff until I see how things really turn out. He might not lose his foot, but he might need his ankle fused. Ankles are complex. Then there is the pain issue. Yes, it is depressing to contemplate, but we are just a month out from this accident. Healing is going to be a process. And doctors have been wrong before.

I think selling his stuff does not help his mental state - the depression worries me more than the injury. He needs hope.

I'll be thinking positive thoughts today on Steve's behalf.
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« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2016, 10:34:00 am »

Sad to hear, but we all have to accept motorcycling for what it is: a thrill that is laced with hazards.

The last time I quit riding, it lasted for 15yrs.  It wasn't accident related; I just quit.  I had no regret nor sorrow.  I didn't think at all about motorcycling during that time, but I also knew once a motorcyclist, always a motorcyclist.

I enjoy it now to the fullest extent possible, borderline going nuts at times.  If at any moment circumstances dictate I can have it no more, I would be at peace and grateful for what I had.  As avid a motorcyclist as I am - and have been - it is far from the only worthy passion in life.  Let your buddy chart his own course - however/whatever he chooses.
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« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2016, 11:16:04 am »

With my knees, I question it every time I get near the bike. All the metal in me... I'm truly and honestly afraid of what could happen if I go down hard. :\
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« Reply #13 on: July 01, 2016, 03:19:06 pm »

Beat wishes to Steve for a quick recovery.
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« Reply #14 on: July 01, 2016, 06:39:23 pm »

Sorry to hear that. Wish him the best.

I contemplated quitting for awhile after a crash in 2007 that could have been so much worse. I just missed the car that had turned out in front of me and instead just had a long slide down the highway, some sprains, minor road rash and a couple stitches. It really does make you think twice. By the next spring though I was feeling much more positive and have kept riding. I became more cautious, and now that I'm 61 I have definitely slowed my pace a bit through twisty roads. Slower reflexes, slower cognitive processing, poorer eyesight: all good reasons to slow down a bit.
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« Reply #15 on: July 01, 2016, 07:44:34 pm »

Very nice replies here. Steve lives in paradise, at 10,000', so he does not have cell coverage until he comes out of the mountains. When he comes out he always calls me so I will pass along the nice comments/wishes from you all.    Smile

I did tell him about ten days ago to not even think about bikes and to concentrate on healing. He will be immobile for probably the rest of the year. So maybe he will change his mind next Summer when he is, hopefully, back to getting around.

From my point of view the only time I really considered giving up bikes was the first year of riding in 1974. I blew a corner on my H1 500 two stroke. Didn't break anything but got scraped up and it scared the heck out of me. My other goof ups have been "what did I do wrong and what can I do to not do that again".

I do like Vgyrl's gloves or dinner comment. Except I hate venison so I'll take the gloves!!
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« Reply #16 on: July 01, 2016, 08:33:29 pm »

Blue...

Here is a thread for Steve to read.

https://www.sport-touring.net/forums/index.php/topic,57250.0.html#.V3cHWZMrKAw

Many here have had ankle injuries at various levels of severity. I believe veefer800canuck wins the pool for the most smashed up. His was so smashed up, he was not a candidate for ankle replacement (not enough bone to attach), but instead had his left ankle fused. And he now has an electronic shifter to help him ride. He also faced amputation as an option.

In any case, I would pass the thread referenced above to Steve and encourage him to get another opinion.

Keep us posted.
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« Reply #17 on: July 01, 2016, 08:42:47 pm »

Your friend has chosen not to ride. It doesn't change you. It doesn't change your friend. It changes something you shared. If there is more to the friendship then it will continue, if not, it probably won't. Personally, given where your friend lives, I'd make a point of riding to his place often to check and see how he's doing... Bring something along to sip on, sit on his front porch and watch the world slowly turn from 10,000' up. Smile

Most of us will reach a point when we hang up the keys to our motorcycles. I don't know when that time will come knocking for me but I feel it coming. Got some riding to do yet before it gets here though. Wink
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« Reply #18 on: July 01, 2016, 10:34:30 pm »

VifferG, I will pass that along to him.

WB, Steve and I will remain very good friends for sure. I can't count the times I have ridden to his cabin alone just for a get-a-way ride and visit.



Over the years we've always looked for an excuse to ride. Our riding styles have been pretty similar, and being friends, there has always been a little give and take related to miles traveled, speed and so forth. I just am sad that we won't be riding together if things remain the same. It will be next year before the dust settles on this terrible injury. Who knows I'll just have to wait and see.
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« Reply #19 on: July 02, 2016, 11:13:14 am »

I'm very sorry to have to read through this thread, but I want to offer another point.

Steve is not only probably being sensible, but very, very brave.  One of these days most of us will face the decision of when to quit, and it's not an easy one.

It takes more guts to quit, than to keep on doing something you've been doing for decades.

What else do you two share in common, so as to keep up the contact?
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