Trudie Yeager – Why I Ride
My riding experience began when we purchased a 1950 Harley-Davidson Scooter while living in upper New York State. Such beautiful country – we rode all over! I fell in love with the riding feeling and the beauty as seen from the scooter with no windows to impede the view.
After moving back to PA, we had a 1960 Vespa Scooter and rode that all over on local roads, Pocono’s, shore, etc. The next step was a 1973 Honda 350 cc. Again, lots of riding including trips to Syracuse, NY. There were thoughts in the back of my head that I might like to learn to ride on my own.
In 1978, I had the opportunity to take the Motorcycle Safety Course at (the then) Montgomeryville Honda. I had the 350 Honda at my disposal to practice with. I loved the freedom, the feeling of the wind in my face, being out in this beautiful country of ours and admiring God’s world. I was a member of the Blue Comet MC at the time and the second woman rider to join the club. Riding with them improved my skills and safety awareness.
As winter was approaching, my practicing stopped until the next spring. In June 1979, I drove myself to the State Police Barracks in Dublin, PA, took my test … and passed!
That September I decided the 350 was too small for me to take long trips on. The Blue Comets traveled to Ohio each year to the races that were held there. And there were other trips to Virginia, Lake George NY, Wellsboro PA, etc. So I purchased Honda’s first twin bike, a 1979 CX 500 cc. The bike rode nicely and took me on many trips quite comfortably. A couple years later, a friend of mine in the Blue Comets kinda dared me to try another friend’s Honda Gold Wing. So I did and found that it handled very well and I was comfortable driving it! Soon after, I purchased a used 1980 Honda Interstate 1100 cc.
I rode that bike everywhere – local poker runs, to and from work, trips with the Blue Comets and to her friends, etc. Put about 10,000 miles a year on it! At this time I was also teaching the PA Motorcycle Safety Course, which I did for about three years. It was fun showing up on my “big bike”, especially to the guys in the class (which included the Warminster Police Dept.). Not many women rode their own bikes at that time. Then came a series of foot and knee surgeries that put me out of riding on my own for several years.
By then, my (then) husband got back to riding a Harley (after two Yamaha’s and a Honda) and pur-chased a 2000 H-D Fat Boy. We then join
ed Coopers-burg HOG I got the bug and wanted to ride my own bike again. So I purchased a used 2000 H-D Deuce. One trip to Virginia and I said, “That’s enough for me! This bike is too small for trips!” I had been beaten and battered on the trip. I only rode the bike about seven months. We were scheduled to go to Milwaukee for the 2003 100th Rally, so I rode with Frank on the Fat Boy so as not to put many miles on the Deuce.
So back to the Harley Dealer I went. I had been admiring the Heritage Softail Classic and talked to riders how they liked them. I took one for a test drive and was sold.
In March 2004, I purchased a new Heritage Softail Classic in Luxury Blue. After a few local rides, my first long trip was to Texas. Four days out, five days visiting friends, and five days back. What a ride! It was so comfortable and handled all the road conditions very well. And again, the exhilarating feeling of being free and in the wind, so to speak. I had always en-joyed riding 2-up, but driving let me see more and I enjoyed the feeling of driving. Frank and I enjoyed many trips together – he on his Fat Boy and me o
n my Heritage. After Texas, we spent a 19-day trip to Canada, caught the International Rally on Prince Edward Island, and traveled to all the 14+ lighthouses. We also stayed on Brier Is-land for a several days touring and doing some whale watching. Since then we have been to Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Kentucky, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Finger Lakes and 1000 Islands NY, and many local rides and trips.
We spent a week in Montana & Wyoming, but rented a Heritage and rode 2-up (due to the timing). Now there is some incredibly beautiful and magnificent country! I had been getting very tired on long trips, especially in the hot weather. I had been down a couple times and Frank worried about me. And I did not enjoy the trips as much. So in February 2011, we traded my Heritage on a 2006 Ultra Classic so we could ride 2-up. The first trip we took on it (to Virginia) was great. I could relax, enjoy the scenery, and take pictures. And Frank felt better with me riding behind him rather than in front!
My love of riding has not diminished. Although I miss driving my own bike, for the long trips, I am really enjoying being a passenger. And, I can ride the Fat Boy… when Frank is not riding it! The other reasons for riding are the wonderful people you meet in your travels, the beautiful places to ride and enjoy the freedom, and the camaraderie of the people you are riding with. Motorcycle riders are just a different breed. Along with being friendly, they are a very caring, sharing people.
So keep the rubber side down, keep on riding and God Bless.
Leave a Reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.