Around May of 2020, we decided our plan to ride to the Arctic Circle in August had become untenable. COVID-19 had rendered cross-border travel difficult at best, likely impossible and definitely irresponsible. Fuck. Now what? We focused on work and family and once it felt like we had improved our business and personal defenses, the siren song of empty highways turned from a low hum to a constant, steady beat. Our group of friends agreed that whatever risk might be involved, the reward would be worth it. Ride or die. Over twelve days we travelled nearly 3000 miles.
Starting in Wendover, Utah at the legendary Bonneville Salt Flats, we worked our way up through Idaho, a bit of Montana, across Eastern Washington and through the entire state of Oregon. We camped remotely and our buddy Rob drove a chase van full of firewood, good food and cold beers. As the summer of discontent ground down the souls of a polarized nation, we quit caring about news and feedback loops and enjoyed the outdoors along with some cantakerous old motorcycles. Mixing with other folks was at a minimum which was fine with us, ‘Rona or not.
After the first day or so, we talked very little about current events, stayed off our phones and focused on figuring out why a bike wouldn’t start or where the next hot spring was. It felt like the healthiest thing we’d done in months–and that was exactly the point.