Weekly Update
Greetings Riders,
Well, the calendar has changed to 2010 and we are officially into the second decade of the 2000's. As usual, I've written one check this year and already made my first mistake by putting 2009 on the year. I'm sure that is a common mistake for the first few days of the new year. We are all hoping that 2010 will be a better year for everyone, and if we are looking for a sign, the first weekend of the year started off with a great weekend for riding. And with weather like that, it really gets me thinking about the upcoming riding season and some weekend trips. A few ideas that come to mind in the first few months of the year will be a trip to Kartchner Caverns to see "The Big Room", a ride up Mt. Lemmon and another stay at The Shady Dell in Bisbee.  We tend to go South during the first half of the year. Start planning your first ride to enjoy our Spring in the Southwest.
As I start to get excited about the upcoming great riding weather we are going to have, I also like to start to think about things I have learned over the past few years and try to not make those mistakes again. Here are my "Top 10" that come to mind that you might have experienced yourself:
1.  Putting on rain gear. If it looks like rain, smells like rain, and there is rain on the pavement, it is probably raining. It is now officially PAST time to put your rain gear on. Put rain gear on PRIOR to all of the obvious signs.
Lesson: Error to putting on rain gear too soon. It only takes a couple of times of getting drenched to learn this one.
2.  Learn that "E" on the gas gauge actually does mean empty. It does not stand for "E-ternity of Gas". I sometimes tend to get those confused. Figuring out how far past the "E" you can ride is useful in the game to see how far you can go on a tank of gas. To win the game you are able to ride into the gas station and actually put more gas in the tank than it holds. Losing the game involves a call to AAA from the side of the road. My record is now 5.3 gallons in a 5 gallon tank. 
Lesson: Walk 3 miles for gas in 100 degrees and you won't make that mistake again.
3.  Estimating time to ride to destination.  Getting it through my head that 350 miles of riding through mountain passes and twisties is going to take considerably longer than 350 miles on a Montana freeway. One of my more famous quotes on a trip; "It is only 350 miles, we should be there by 3pm." I am reminded of this quote at 5pm by Mrs. C. when we are still 100 miles away.
Lesson: Learn it. Over estimate how long it will take.
4.  Be sure bike is in neutral when starting. After 35 plus years of riding, this one still tends to get me every once in a while. Nothing much worse than going to your bike at a bike night, thinking it is in neutral and pushing the start button to find out that you were wrong. However, it is quite entertaining for all of the people that saw you make this common rookie mistake. Pull in the clutch or make sure it is in neutral before pushing the start button.
Lesson: Don't be the subject of the jokes for the rest of the day.
5.  Confirm that the kickstand is secure before dismounting. I had this happen in Ouray, Co. last year. I put the kickstand down on the severely sloped main St. a little too straight up. The wind was blowing pretty good and when I got about 4 steps away from the bike I heard a big crash. It had blown over. Fortunately no serious damage to levers, etc. and I was able to ride it.
Lesson: Make sure that bike is stable on kickstand.
6.  Directions. No matter how much I like my GPS and no matter how many times it has saved me, road signs still trump the GPS. If you know you are supposed to be on I-70 West and the sign clearly says I-70 West, go with the sign.
Lesson: Know what you know.
7.  Eating regularly. I am the kind of guy that will eat a big breakfast and be good until we stop for dinner. My thought is that stopping to eat is "Burning Daylight". Lesson: Not everyone is that way. Much easier on everyone to stop and get your spouse some food when she is ready for it. Generally the only source of real discussion on our trips. 
Lesson: Keep your wife well fed. Makes for a more enjoyable ride.  
8.  Be aware of under dressing. Realize that standing still in the sun with a short sleeve t-shirt on in 60 degree weather does not feel the same as riding 70 mph in the same temperature and attire. Over dressing will never be  a problem for me. Lesson: Learn how to "Layer" properly. It is easier to deal with too many clothes on than it is to freeze for 100 miles.
Lesson: Error to over dressing.
9.  Turn off alarm "Before" getting on bike. I have a siren alarm attached my stock HD security system. It is an $80 add on that helps me sleep better at night knowing that at least I could hear my bike being wheeled away if someone tried to steal it. But there have been many times that I have forgotten that I have set the alarm and get on the bike to the sound of the wailing alarm. I always get "The Look" from Mrs. C. for that one. 
Lesson: No lesson here, just an irritating habit.
10. Stop taking off with kickstand down. Rookie mistake #1. It is embarrassing to have someone point at your kickstand when you are riding to find that it is still down. It also makes left turns much more challenging. Page 12 in the riders manual advises against this activity. Never can figure out how I forget this. Usually stems from being distracted just as you take you bike off of the side stand.
Lesson: Dangerous. Stop doing it.

Highlights This Week
Saturday, January 9th, 2010
Chester's Harley-Davidson Dyno Day. Stop by Chester's HD on Saturday, January 9th
for a FREE Baseline Run on our Dyno and let us tell you how much Torque and Horsepower your motor is producing. 
While you are there, enjoy FREE Food and Live Music at the "Party on the Patio".

Bike Nights This Week
Thursday Night
The Bike Night At The Billet Bar The Billet Bar is the place to be for the Summer nights and weekends. Set on the patio and watch the action. Voted "BEST BIKER BAR IN PHOENIX" by New Times. There is no better place to watch all the Bikes ride down Scottsdale road than from The Billet Bar Patio. The Billet is ALWAYS packed with bikes Every Day. Stop by and take a look at the New Flamed Booths on the Paradise Patio. The new bars front and rear provide spacious seating, fresh air atmosphere, perfect temperature and courteous staff. The food is amazing and always the latest in cold libations await. You can sit at the back bar and watch your favorite TV on any of the seven big inch televisions. Play pool, listen to the latest music and socialize. The front patio seats over 75 people and is perfect for people watching on Scottsdale Rd. The Billet Bar is located on 3752 N. Scottsdale Rd. Check it out this Thursday night and all weekend long. Info: at 480-941-1876. Click Here for the New Billet Bar Page with pictures.
Bike Night Thursday at McDuffy's in Peoria. Ride by the newest Bike Night on the West side. 
McDuffy's is one of the finest West side locations for a bike night at a single restaurant. The 12,500 Sq. Ft. McDuffy's features 2 outdoor patios, a huge dining room with booths for seating, a very large area with high tops for you to easily hang out with your friends, an upper level for lounging or to play pool, a very large bar and 100 TV's to watch your favorite sporting event. Not only that the dinner menu is very broad and McDuffy's has excellent food at a very good price. Bike Nights features a $6.99 Menu that includes Classic Burgers, Charbroiled Chicken Breast Burger, Buffalo Wings, Chicken Quesadilla, Nachos, Popcorn Chicken, Pizza and 1/2 Drink Pricing. McDuffy's is located just South of 83rd Ave. and Bell Rd. at 15814 N. 83rd Ave. 623-334-5000. Plenty of Motorcycle Parking!
This Week
Saturday, January 9th, 2010
Chester's Harley-Davidson Dyno Day. Have you ever wondered how much horsepower you have when you are fully loaded and trying to pass those cars on a slow 2 lane road? It seems like never enough! But now you can find out how much you have and where you need to be to get around those cars in plenty of time. Stop by Chester's HD on Saturday, January 9th for a FREE Baseline Run on our Dyno and let us tell you how much Torque and Horsepower your motor is producing. While you are there, enjoy FREE Food and Live Music at the "Party on the Patio". You can also take advantage of 10% off on Performance Parts purchased during the event with service scheduled. For the entire month of January you can get your new tires for the season with the Chester's Metzler Tire Blowout. Tires starting as low as $90.00. Stop by Chester's Harley-Davidson from 10am - 3pm on Saturday, January 9th for all of the fun. Chester's HD is located at 922 S. Country Club Dr. in Mesa, AZ. 480-894-0404.
Saturday, January, 9th
Crashing sucks! Benifit for Marcus Vincent. This is a benefit poker run for a local injured rider. Marcus Vincent, father and Husband injured in a MC accident in Phx. Runs starts at Curly's custom's located at 12030 N. 111th ave Youngtown Az. Sign in at 8:00am on Sat. Jan. 9th. There will be a total of 5 stops ending at The Loft Again, 15015 N. Cave creek rd. in Phx. Cost is $10 entry fee. Extra card available for $5 Prizes include High hand, Kramer Electric guitar Autographed by David Lee Roth! Low hand = $100 gift certificate to Curly's customs. There will be door prizes, 50/50 raffle. Food and drink will be available at The Loft Again.
Sunday, January 10th
Inkster Benefit Run and Raffle. Inkster Benefit Poker Run & Raffle for Kenan Prough injured in a very bad accident on his Harley. Registration is from 10-10:30 in Glendale at Sammy's Bar & Grill on 83rd Ave. and Glendale, then Bridgett's Last Laugh, Hideaway, Dirty Dogg Saloon, and end at Billet Bar. $10 Rider, $5 passenger. Many raffle prizes, 50/50. $200 best hand, $100 low hand. Contact info: or 602-485-3713.
Next Week
Saturday, January 16th
Stand Up and Stand Proud 1st Annual Benefit Ride. Sponsored by Arizona Standdown, Helping Homeless Veterans. Our mission is to provide sweat suits, sweatpants, and sweatshirts for homeless veterans as they attend 2010 Arizona Stand Down. Enjoy free coffee and doughnuts January 16th as we gather to Stand Up and Stand Proud for our veterans who need us now. Benefit ride begins with a $10 registration at 8:30am at Dunkin Donuts located at 6606 E. McKellips Rd. in Mesa, followed by a ride ending at Kmart on 1445 S. Power Rd. at 10:30am where we will select the products and sizes of clothing. More information: Tom Steinhagen at 480-832-2466.
Post your ride photos on the front page of the Facebook
Take a look at all the new photos posted on the wall. I invite you to post a picture of yourself by a sign or landmark from a trip you have taken, or a picture of you on your motorcycle. Or just share your favorite ride with 1400 other motorcycle enthusiasts. 
I am inviting you to 1450 other riders and "Become A Fan" on the Facebook page. Click Here to Become a Fan and bookmark this page. If you are not on Facebook, you can still view the page, but you will not be able to post. There will be a link there for you to sign up for Facebook if you are inclined.
This is one of those radio station prank calls that went horribly bad. You can hear one of the DJ's gasp as those fateful words came out. Click Here to View.
A lot of the dealerships are having creative sales to catch our attention, but here is one that caught my eye. There is an interesting promotion going on at Chester's Harley-Davidson called Tires 4 Life. If you saw any pictures of me at the Rocky Point Rally, you might imagine my excitement over this program. Apparently, if you buy a new Harley from Chester's Harley-Davidson, they will pay for new tires for your motorcycle as long as you own it. Since I have 58,000 miles on my bike and spend about $500 a year on average for tires, (not counting burnouts) this could save me about $2500 over 5 years. Pretty sweet deal if you ride a lot." So if you ride a lot and are looking for a new bike, you might check them out.
This snow skier truly has some guts, or not very smart. The anticipation to see what happens is pretty good in this video. Great filming as well. Click Here to View
Video of the Week
Here is another funny beer commercial. Don't know how these guys continue to come up with this stuff. This is called "How Aliens Fish".  Click Here to View. Click on the Video of the Week graphic on the page.
Until Next Week,
Blessings and Safe Riding To All,
Barry Caraway
"The Road Is Yours - Take The Ride"