April 16, 2013

The Next Best Thing to Riding Your Own...

 ... is becoming a sidecar monkey.

With my motorcycle still in storage the next best thing is shamelessly soliciting a ride from the famous URAL handler Dom whom we had the privilege to host before he would leave civilization for the cold wild tundra.
The handsome orange motorcycle/sidecar combination named Valencia offers a whole new perspective on riding, and it almost feels like riding in a convertible sports car, if it wasn't for the motorcycle gear.
 Shadow Riders

I want (need?) to get in as much riding time as I can, so I show him the way to Alouette Lake (50 km one way) in the Golden Ears Provincial Park through effective punch and point. This specific means of communications works perfectly, and an hour later we stop to enjoy the lake and mountain vistas (No, I still can't name them, so let's stick to Mount Bob, Roland Peak and Martha Heights).

With me out of the sidecar the next thing I watch is Dom rolling down the boat launch to find out if his hack is amphibian.
Just kidding! In fact he is looking for the perfect position to pose with Valencia, while I am waiting for the Kodak moment in which the brakes of his URAL would give way...
All goes well though, the brakes are holding, and I force Dom at gunpoint to pose for a picture, hence the face...
To test out the sidecar's capabilities I guide him and Valencia further into the forest to the "Rambo-Bridge", and with impeccable precision Dom managed to hit every single pothole on that short stretch of gravel road.
His attempts to shake me up left me completely unimpressed, though. The sidecar seat is not only safe and comfy but special shock absorbers help preventing any spinal damage. For all I know it is a perfectly smooth ride.
Dom in action... no wait a minute, does he ride with his eyes closed? Maybe Valencia knows the way...
Three hours later... and we are still riding. The light is fading and it is rapidly getting cold. Not for me on "my" monkey seat, though. I just hide under the cover and all is well.
A ride in the sidecar, especially with an experienced rider like Dom is FUN, capital letters! I enjoyed every minute of the 3 1/2 hours, and could have gone much longer.

If you like motorcycle riding but don't ride your own, forget about going pillion, get somebody with a hack! It is the next best thing to riding your own, honour bright!
Thank you, Dom for this unforgettable experience, and thanks to your wife Martha, who had sent you on this trip of a lifetime. Drive safely, and don't get hit by moose or bears. By the way I hope you will find your way to Alaska without the map you forgot on our dinner table... 

Roland and I genuinely enjoyed having you over and sharing our views on world, life and (yes, it is indeed a hobby of those bloody Krauts...) politics. Please know that you and your family will always be welcome whenever, wherever...

23 comments:

  1. Sounds like so much fun (new friends, new rides!) ... fun photos as well. I wish him well (and warmth) on his journey.

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  2. I, too, found riding in the sidecar when I was visiting Chris to be very enjoyable. I've always been mystified why anyone would want to ride pillion. I've experienced that only once and wasn't impressed. Too much view of the back of the pilot's head.
    ~k

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    1. Pillion riding is better than not riding at all... however riding monkey is just so much better!

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  3. Now that is deliciously, excitingly FUN!! I'm glad you were able to get a few pokes and prods in to counteract the potholes. :)

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    1. Those potholes were quite bearable, Dom has really good shocks on the sidecar.

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  4. Sonja:

    It's sort of like riding in a single seat convertible. Looks fun but now you can see how much work it is whenever you have to make a turn. It takes a lot of "leg action"

    I'm glad you took him to some scenic places

    bob
    Riding the Wet Coast

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    1. I would love to experience a bit more sidecar action. Dom was very careful and didn't send the chair flying.

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  5. Thanks SonjaM for the kind words and making me out to be a competent sidecar jockey....as to the map...dang it!

    But that's Ok, from this point on, it's the Milepost....it includes full data on the roads within Canada.

    dom

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    1. Then all is well, I hope you enjoy the rest of your journey. Be safe!

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  6. Great pictures! I liked the one with the Ural backed up to the water on the boat ramp. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. I like this one, too.

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  7. Did you need to hang out on left hand bends?

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    1. No, just leaning a bit, but I would have...

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  8. So much awesome contained in one post. Beautiful pictures Sonja.

    Does this mean Dom needs to start a Ural touring business? I think he'd do quite well. People would line up for rides.

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    1. You are up to something, maybe he should start charging for it... no wait this is his payback for feeding him and giving him a place to sleep ;-)

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  9. Looks like fun but I think I'd make a terrible 'monkey'. Something to try one day if I get the chance though.

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    1. Since a monkey is often an active contributor to the ride it is actually pretty interesting. I liked it a lot.

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  10. It looks like you have a huge smile. Though forcing him at gun point is a little "un-Canadian" don't you think?

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    1. Smiling I was.

      You think threatening wasn't ok? But that was the only way to convince him...

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  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  12. Fun stuff! Nice to have a perspective view from the sidecar seat. Someone should have warned you though. When we did Going to the Sun highway I saw Dom swing close to the wall with water runoff, trying to give Martha a little shower. :)
    Gotta keep an eye on that guy!

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    1. Now, that explains the pothole ride ;-)

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