One of the best parts of living in the Mid-Atlantic, besides the amazing roads, is our close proximity to a ton of history and interesting places. So this weekend, in order to celebrate Lean Angle founder Rob’s birthday, we decided to take a little romp North to PA to check out one of the most important battlefields of our country’s history: Gettysburg.
The week back after a vacation is always the roughest. It’s no different here at Lean Angle. After a hectic week consisting of not only publishing our usual rider profiles, but also the launch of Lean Angle’s first shirt (which we are setting up a group buy on by the way), a wonderful weekend of two wheeled twisties is exactly what the doctor ordered.
“Chase your dreams” something that is often said, but rarely actually done. So when we met Jon Ringeisen, a fellow rider, and racer in the CCS series who was doing just that, we quickly took interest. You see, Jon is living the moto-dream – thanks to hard work, a supportive wife, and a blooming line of bike apparel by the name of Sick Lean.
One of the best things that motorcycling brings us is our sense of independence. The ability to slip on your helmet, drop the bike into gear, and leave the “real world” behind for a few hours (or days) at the twist of a throttle is one of the greatest parts about getting your boots in the wind. But every now and then, its great to get together with a couple of your closest friends and ignite the back-roads with the sounds of exploding fuel is just what you need for a taste of “community” in your rides. And while riding in large groups is an awesome feeling, there are some differences from normal riding which you should know.
Photo: Elliot Gauer
We started the morning off at 9:30 sharp to head out and meet the rest of the group. Chris, Lean Angle‘s resident GSX-R guy, and Ben both decided to join on this one as well. We fueled up at the local Shell station, checked tire pressures, and grabbed a Red Bull before putting the kickstands up and heading North. On our way out of the city, we decided it was ample time for everyone else to be awake in our neighborhood as well, so we gave them a nice wake up alarm on our way to the highway. Our first stop would be Druid Hill Park to meet up with a few other riders and the ride’s organizers.
We arrived at the park and were greeted by Andrew from BMoreMoto, along with the folks from CafeRacerXXX and DCMotobabes. That certainly wasn’t our limit though as we also joined a slew of Triumphs, and a sprinkling o just about every other make on the road. We held an initial meeting before heading out going over hand signals and what our day would include. After the meeting, one group headed out to get fuel while the rest of us waited about 15 minutes before meeting them and heading out to begin the official ride. Our trek was set to be “slab” the whole way. Interstate 83 to 695 and out 70 before a stop in Frederick for lunch.
Our stop was at Fredericktown Yamaha where they welcomed us with open arms (and an open parking lot) and even bought us a whole bunch of pizza, soda, and water. They even let us poke around the shop for about an hour before DC the folks from CafeRacerXXX let us know they would be starting a raffle for everyone who came on the ride and began picking names out of the hat. They had arranged so many donations from folks at VETMotorsports, Fredericktown Yamaha, 515 Moto, Lowside Magazine, DCMotobabes, and many more, that everyone walked away with some pretty sweet swag. .
We left Fredericktown Yamaha and kept West on 70 towards Hagerstown. The group actually got split in two at one point and Lean Angle actually ended up leading the ride out for a bit. We stopped on the highway just before our exit to wait for the rest of the group, as they had gotten split up from us at one of the lights in Frederick. Then we exited onto the surface streets which lead us to Hagerstown Speedway. We parked, got some eat pictures of the group, and looked around for a bit. Unfortunately, the races weren’t slated to begin for a few hours, and Chris and I had to head back home.
We decided on the ride home that we were sick of the highway and would need a more fun, yet still fast route. Being familiar with the already, we blasted down 70 before getting off in Frederick and taking 144 for a large portion of the ride until Mt. Airy. But not without a quick detour out rt. 75 and rt. 80 before coming back to 144 via Barthollows Rd. and Bill Moxley Rd. where I had to stop to pay respects to an old friend. From Mt.Airy, we took rt. 40 to river rd before crossing over 32 to get back to 144. We jumped onto the beltway before ending our day with some grilling ad swimming at the High-roller Hideout. By the time we finished, our day was between 150 and 200 miles, but who’s counting? The real measure of a good morning is the time spent with friends and taking in the experience.
Until next time friends, keep it shiny side up. And remember, when life throws you a curve, lean into it.