Image taken Oct. 1941, one of several photos taken on a trip to see fall foliage. This is some 24 years later than the publication date for the following article, but the subject matter (enjoying nature from the seat of a motorcycle) is much the same. – LOC.
*Copyright 2012. Not for re-distribution without permission, and listing the source (vrumblesramblingbikerblog.wordpress.com).
I am a motorcyclist because I am an enthusiastic angler. Of all the numerous varieties of angling I indulge in, none gives me so much satisfaction and none is so hard to follow, as the pursuit of the speckled trout. In the thickly-settled parts of the country—especially near large cities—good fishing is much harder to find now than it was years ago in those wonderful days when there was good fishing everywhere; from my home I have to travel 50, 75 miles, or even more, to reach a first-class stream. And there is no mode of conveyance yet devised that can take the place of a motorcycle for this.
All my fishing friends envy me the catches I make each spring. Some of said friends own automobiles. Why don’t they follow my example—leave home at 4:30, ride 60 or 70 miles, catch a fine mess of trout, and be back home by dusk or shortly after? Why don’t they attempt this with an automobile? Because they’re wise. They know it can’t be done over that sort of roads.
AN AID TO THE NIMROD.
I am a motorcyclist because I am also very fond of hunting—not that I slaughter very many tons of game each fall, but I love to hear the thunder of a ruffed grouse’s wings as he breaks cover on a crisp October morning, and I love to stick the old double-barrel to my shoulder and heave an ounce of No. 8s chilled after him, whether the charge happens to connect with the bird or not. And all the pleasure I get from hunting trips I owe to the trusty two-wheeler; deliver me from going either hunting or fishing by trolley. There’s nothing to it!
You know a motorcycle will easily take care of a fellow hunter and a dog as well—by aid of a sidecar. My pup quickly learned what the sidecar meant in the way of pleasure for him, and only once made the mistake of jumping out when it was in motion. That was on his first ride, and he jumped from the seat to greet a canine friend, never having studied physics and so being totally unacquainted with the laws governing moving bodies. He landed on his bean, but the one lesson was enough; it didn’t have to be driven in with an axe.
I am a motorcyclist because I am a lover of Nature’s big outdoors—not merely as a sportsman whose aim is to destroy, but as one who can appreciate all that Nature has to offer, from so humble a thing as a blue violet in a roadside ditch to the haunting mystery of a whip-poor-will’s call. And it is the motorcycle that has served to put me on intimate terms with all that the word Nature stands for. To find Nature at her best you’ve got to get away from the city, away from the parks, and trolley cars, and railroads; and the motorcycle will take you there.
I am a motorcyclist because I love the feeling of freedom, of independence, that the two-wheeler brings, the thought that at my disposal is a mode of conveyance which will take me anywhere I desire to go, do it cheaply and quickly, too, and in such a way that the traveling itself, instead of being a hardship, as traveling often is, becomes a keen pleasure.
I am a motorcyclist because I know enough to appreciate what a wonder of a time-saver that same old faithful chugger is. It enables me to do things, to get to places and back with time to spare, that otherwise would be out of the question. If a man’s time is worth anything at all, the motorcycle will easily enable him to save enough to cover its own upkeep with a good generous balance left over at the end of the year.
And finally I am a motorcyclist because the fever is deep in my blood; in fact, always has been since the time, years ago, when I first saw one of those weird contraptions, the forerunner of our perfect machines of today. No agent ever had to argue me into the idea that I needed a machine. I ‘knew’ I needed it, just as much as I knew anything, and the only thing any agent ever had to do was to convince me that my earthly happiness depended on my buying his particular make of machine.
If I had to drop from memory’s book all the pages that record good times which have come my way during the past eight years as a direct result of my motorcycling enthusiasm, I should feel poor indeed. If, from now on, I could no longer count upon a motorcycle to take me to any desired place with a minimum expenditure of time and money, I should be lost. What wonder, then, that I am a motorcyclist! – Motorcycle Illustrated. Jan. 18, 1917.