I am an ordinary guy who enjoys riding motorcycles. I love riding all makes and models. I love short rides, long rides, and multi-day road trips. I post reviews about motorcycle gear, motorcycles, roads, restaurants, sights, gadgets and more. The Motorcycle Facts,Trivia and History page has a lot of good info. Be safe and enjoy the ride, Oz.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


I have posted a review on my V Star 1100 and I posted when the V Star hit 100,000 miles.  I now want to announce that the very reliable, ridable, maneuverable machine has been replaced.

After a lot of looking and research I am now riding a Yamaha Royal Star Venture. I looked at almost every bagger out there.  One of the big factors in my decision is that the Venture comes with a 5 year unlimited miles warranty.  That is hard to turn down, especially considering how much I ride.

I picked up the bike Saturday May 22, 2010 from Motion CycleSports and I am looking forward to riding it for 100,000+ miles.
I got up early Sunday morning and went riding prior to attending church.  I stopped on CO 331 aka Woodlawn Road on the east side of McKinney and took these pictures of my bike.
Needless to say I am pretty excited and I am really enjoying the Venture.  Later on when I get 10,000+ miles on the bike I will post my thoughts and impressions.  In the mean time I am riding every chance I get.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Amazing formations

I know that there has been a lot written about Arches National Park in Utah, but I am going to share my thoughts anyway.

In June 2009 part of our 4 state trip included a day of riding from SW Colorado into Utah and up to Moab to visit Arches NP.  As we rode up US 191 from Monticello, UT we saw many formations that gave us a small preview of what was in store for us.
Church Rock lies to the east of US 191, south of Moab, UT
Along the way we stopped at Wilson  Arch, a popular formation right beside the highway with paved parking provided on both sides of the road.  Hiking to the arch is allowed and the view from the arch is great.
Wilson Arch
The boys on the arch, what a view!
View from Wilson Arch and one of the group on the arch.
Parking lot as seen from the arch
The hike up the arch is short, but steep.  We made the hike in our riding boots and I am glad I went up.  It was really neat.

We continued to Moab and then to Arches NP.  The park is just north of Moab on US 191.  There is a gift shop with facilities at the entrance of the park.  We rode  17.7 miles to the farthest part of the park, Devils Garden Trailhead.  Along the way we viewed the desert landscape and the saw many of the 2000+ arches in the park.
One of the arches along the way.
There is numerous trails and we had limited time, so we decided to visit this area the most.  One arch we hiked to was Pine Tree Arch.  There were many in the area, but the hikes to them are longer.
Look closely and you can see me and my son at Pine Tree Arch.
There are many unique formations that are not arches.  The Devils Garden area had some neat formations.
 Elephant Rock - not the best angle, but you can see the elephant head and top of his truck.
Another unique formation.
We left Devils Garden Trailhead and road to Delicate Arch Viewpoint.  Due to time we did not hike to the famous arch, but we hiked a short distance to a great viewpoint just south of the arch.  It is an impressive site.
The iconic Delicate Arch
Delicate Arch
After view Delicate Arch we headed out of the park and on to Grand Junction, CO by way of an awesome road UT 128 (see previous post about the road).

Arches National Park is a worthy destination.  Allot plenty of time to hike to some of the sites.  Take plenty water, snacks, and sunscreen.  I look forward to visiting the park again in the future.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Awesome customer service

Review furnished by avid rider, trusted friend, and JAOB blog reader.  See J. Horn's first review about a quality jacket and his review about riding the Alpine Loop.

Custom Accessories - An Example of Great Customer Support

My used VStrom 650 came with a 12-volt weather proof power socket made by Custom Accessories  that had been installed by the previous owner. However, there was no power at the socket. I traced the problem to a bad ground connection. I removed the socket and found that the connection between the ground sleeve and the connector pin was open.

I emailed Custom Accessories about the problem, and they responded the next day with instructions to return the socket to them. So, a couple of days later, I boxed it up and sent it with a note explaining that I was not the original purchaser and would gladly pay for a replacement, since I had not been able to find a local supplier who had one in stock.

To my surprise, on the following day, I received a UPS package, containing a brand new socket! They must have sent a replacement before receiving the one I sent in. This is what I would call EXEMPLARY CUSTOMER SERVICE, and STANDING BEHIND A PRODUCT!!

Custom Accessories markets various kinds of automobile accessories, from HID light kits to seat belt pads and steering wheel covers. They will be at the top of my list of suppliers when I need any of these kinds of items.

Custom Accessories does not sell direct to end users, but you can find a list of retailers who carries their products at their web site.
J. Horn on the Alpine Loop - California Pass elevation 12,930