Thursday, December 9, 2010

Looking to next Summer...

Now that the weather here in Southeastern, PA is frigid I am looking forward to next summer. One of my summer rituals has been making a pilgrimage to the Smoky Mountains. Last summer I witnessed an unusual group of motorcycle enthusiast in the wild. The Quad Cam Bastards are Sportster aficionados, and their approach to their rides is minimalist in nature. Their disdain for the corporate culture of present day Harley Davidson is evident in the postings on their blog. I do agree with them that the motor-company has lost its way, but it is what it is, a public traded company.

At first glance most people would take these bastards to be elitists hipster bikers, but there is more to it than that. These guys actually wrench and fabricate their own rides.

Unlike hipsters (and most bikers) who buy their their image at Goodwill or the Harley boutique, the Quad Cam Bastards are a grass roots collective of Harley riders who are dedicated to Sportsters because of the model's simplicity, power, and longevity. Sportsters have been in the Harley lineup since the early 1950s. One could say, and I often do, that Sportsters are the only true Harley.

Their last bash was at the Tail of the Dragon (US 129) in Deals Gap, NC. I rode to the Tail of the Dragon to take advantage of the 11 miles of 318 curves and the Cherohala Skyway, but I also wanted to see what the QCB were like. However, after riding 50 miles in driving rain I arrived soaked and in a sour mood. My introverted tendencies were heightened by being waterlogged, so I observed the bastards from afar. Hey, medication can only do so much for this curmudgeon. But I did get some good pics and some vid. 

This summer, the QCB gang will once again migrate to Deals Gap and the Tail of the Dragon. I will be there as well to enjoy the tremendous riding the Smoky Mountain area has to offer. Hopefully this time the rain will stay away.

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