On the road, and on this blog, I’m posed the question from would be riders, “How do I get started?”. A lot of people ask that question. They want to get a scooter or motorcycle and ride. Some have done some riding in their past and are thinking about riding again, and others are taking those little, shaky, tentative steps past their fear and family misgivings towards taking up a life on two wheels.
The archive of posts is a bit overwhelming. To help answer questions from readers who want to make the leap into the riding world, I’ve put together a list of posts to help illuminate a decision. The text and comments by readers provides insight into what you might be getting yourself into.
I’ve broken things down into the four areas I most often am questioned about; how much risk is involved in riding, should I get a scooter or motorcycle, do I really ride in the winter, and general reflections on riding.
Keep in mind that each rider is unique with their own goals and dreams. What might make sense to me could seem crazy to you. At the end of the day you need to make your own decision.
Good luck and good reading as you explore your own road!
Understanding and Managing Risk
Morning Fall — a great video that dramatically portrays just one aspect of riding risk. I feel strongly that every rider should seriously think about what could happen on the road. It will help keep you sharp and minimize regrets due to not having considered the realities of the road.
Revisiting Risk – a story about facing up to bad decisions related to riding in less than ideal weather and the importance of being humble enough to look in the mirror and recognize the idiot looking back.
Thoughts on Risk and Personal Responsibility – a look at the process of evaluating risk and making personal choices based on your own limitations, skill and understanding of the road.
Aging and Riding a Vespa – musings on the gathering years and what aging holds in store for a rider. Don’t bother reading if you’re under 45.
Riding a Vespa in the Rain – the basics of riding in the rain. It’s not for everyone.
Scooter or Motorcycle?
Do You Want a Scooter or Motorcycle? – the question that haunts every rider at some point in their riding lives. Well, maybe not the scooter part. But the choice of machine can be complicated and troubling. Here’s my read…
Motorcycles as Experienced by a Vespa Rider – the collection of posts on the twenty different motorcycles and scooters I rode and reviewed for Kissell Motorsports (thanks again Craig for the wonderful opportunity). I chalked up a few thousand miles on BMWs, Triumphs, Ducati, Vespa, Piaggio, Kawasaki, URAL and even a Honda Ruckus and shared my observations on them from the point of view of a scooter rider. More than a few times after riding some of the big bikes I felt like I was getting into a clown car when getting back on my Vespa…
5000 Mile Vespa LX150 Review – one of my all time most popular posts as I muse on the wonders of a modern Vespa scooter after 5000 miles of road use.
Becoming a URAL Adventurer – some fun on a URAL; a good read for anyone considering going down the sidecar road.
Winter Riding (Proceed at your own risk.)
Winter Vespa Riding – a popular collection of winter riding posts that deals with everything from being caught in unexpected snow to the kind of things you need to deal with to navigate in the white stuff.
Snow Riding Checklist – the things you need to consider should you think about riding in the snow. My advice, stay at home and watch TV.
Subzero Education – some of the things they don’t highlight in the owner’s manuals of scooters and motorcycles. Riding below zero calls on a few new skills.
Weather and the Calculated Risk – In warm weather unexpected changes in weather are most often met with gear adjustments and minor changes in riding style. Unexpected changes in cold weather involve more risk and can’t be overlooked.
Riding Between Good Snow and Bad – Snow, snow and more snow. Is there really any difference in the kind of snow when you’re riding?
5 Reasons Not to Ride a Motorcycle or Scooter in the Winter – Let me try and talk you out of riding in the winter one more time…
Favorite Vespa Rides – a collection of riding stories with the Vespa.
The Big Picture – a lesson in letting go of plans and expectations and being open to whatever the road delivers.
A Mini Adventure – Camping with a Vespa – a little story about a long ride mixed with sleeping on the hard ground.
Embracing the Spring on a Scooter or Motorcycle – emerging from the greyness of winter into the bring blue skies of spring.
Riding as the Path – turning off the main road, experiencing something unexpected and unlooked for.
Attitude Adjustment – using a ride to reset body and mind after a long week at work.
Robbed of the Riding Life – how cold weather, snow, ice tends to rob a rider of the will to ride and condemning them to a life in a cage.
Riding and the Curious Toddler -exploring, investigating, and being curious; like a kid…