Everything you wanted to know about us… the Texas Rambler motorcycle travel blog and more.
Have you ever driven past a road many times and wondered where it went, never venturing beyond that thought? When traveling by motorcycle it seems that you always make the turn and travel that road, not knowing where it may lead. That’s the allure of riding. It is always an adventure. You are out there in the elements, feeling the sun, wind, heat, cold, rain and smelling all the smells along the way. Spring flowers, food cooking, rain in the distance etc. all the out-door smells… yes, skunks, dead animals etc. too. Some of the most beautiful scenery we have experienced has been while traveling by motorcycle. Over the years we have taken many motorcycle trips. Friends have asked that we share these trips with everyone who may be interested. Thus the start of this blog. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do sharing it with y’all.
Janet & I (Ivan) have been retired since June 2002. We try to travel as often and cheaply as we can. In 2000 I bought a Kawasaki Vulcan Nomad and renewed my love of motorcycle riding. In 2009 I bought a Honda “Goldwing” with all the options except the airbag. The Goldwing is the Cadillac of touring bikes and we love touring on it.
Many of our trips we have taken have been on the motorcycle but we have taken many other trips also. My main interest is motorcycle touring but we will also share our other adventures here also.
Over time we have learned many things that have made our trip more enjoyable and we will share those tips with you here. Keep checking back for all the updates.
Have fun and be safe,
Ivan & Janet
P.S. Please, take the time to subscribe so you don’t miss the latest post or if you know someone who rides and might be interest please email them a link.
Posted in About Us
Tagged dead animals, Goldwing, Honda, kawasaki, learned, Motorcycle, motorcycle ride, Motorcycle Touring, motorcycle travel, motorcycle trip, Motorcycles, motorcycling, nomad, road, skunks, spring-flowers, touring, travel, traveling, vulcan
From Dennis Kirk @ DennisKirk.com
This is where I and most motorcyclist would say, “Yes, …” and list many everyday endeavors that are just as or more dangerous.
I have firsthand knowledge that motorcycling is dangerous. Anyone who rides and doesn’t think so is asking for trouble and not taking safety seriously. If you are hit by something or you hit something you will most likely get hurt and if either of you are moving very fast you will get hurt badly and most likely end up in a hospital. Been there done that (April 2008). I almost stopped riding after a day and a half stay in the hospital. No broken bones just internal bleeding and I hurt like heck and was sore for many weeks. Moments after crashing I was sure I had broken ribs and who knows what else and yes my life did flash before my eyes… Been there done that before too. “Can this be the way it all ends“, I ask myself.
I did think long and hard about riding again. I just wasn’t sure if I wanted to do it anymore. My buddies encouraged me and I did miss riding but even after I healed physically I just wasn’t too sure. One of my concerns was my wife Janet. Even if I were to ride again I didn’t want her to worry when I was out riding alone and what if Janet had been on the bike when I had the accident? I don’t know what I would have done if she had been hurt or worse… So I struggled and I think Janet knew I was struggling about my decision. Then one day Janet said to me, “Ivan if you want to ride again, it’s OK with me and I will ride with you!”. Have I told y’all how wonderful a wife Janet is… Well, that should have told you right there. So having Janet’s blessing did help but I still had to work through all the issues. Time does heal physically and mentally and I cautiously resumed my riding.
After the accident I continually went over and over and over in my mind how this happened to me. There were so many “what ifs“… any one of them could have prevented my crash. I had ridden down to visit my parents and brother 200 miles from home. The night before I was to return home I did not sleep much at all, did not leave for home until later in the day, had the sun in my eyes, I was really fatigued, I panicked and hit the brake too hard and tried to steer around the car but… Anyway it happened and it hurt badly physically and mentally.
Because of all that has happened I have re-evaluated everything, I did and thought, about riding. Now I really know what can happen to you when you do crash. I am ever mindful of my physical and mental being and others riding with me. I try to stay rested and not over do it. I make a special effort to stay hydrated. Make sure I am aware of everything in my surroundings. Statically I know that the more vehicles there are around you the more likely you are to not be seen or just be in the wrong place at the wrong time. When my ride requires traveling through large unfamiliar cities I try to avoid rush hour traffic or travel around it. Of course that is not always possible and I am extra careful when I do. I enjoyed riding the remote areas before my accident and I do even more now. I can handle the bike and roads but those pesky cars, trucks or whatever… that I’m not too crazy about.
Is anyone wondering what became of the bike I wrecked? My 2000 Kawasaki Vulcan Nomad was “totaled” by the insurance company and this a year (April 2007) after customizing the Nomad to my liking. Most all the damage was cosmetic but to have a bike shop replace all the parts and with the labor the total amount was greater than what the bike was worth. I put a pencil to the cost of the parts and realized I could buy the bike from the insurance company and fix it with what I got back from the insurance company. So the old Nomad was back on the road and we have taken many long trips on it afterward.
In October 2009 I bought a new 2008 Goldwing with ABS brakes. One of the big selling points of my decision to buy the Goldwing was the ABS brakes. No more braking too hard and causing a skid. After the crash, ABS brakes was ever on my mind and was the driving force behind me getting a new bike. It is amazing the difference ABS makes when stopping quickly. I can’t say enough about the control… If only I had ABS when I crashed… maybe the accident wouldn’t have happen or maybe it would have… anyway… God only knows but I’m sure it would have helped… those seconds trying to recover from an uncontrolled skid would have been used to avoid that car… Janet has even noticed and comment how much better I handle the Wing over the Nomad and that makes her even more at ease while riding… Oh, did I mention how lucky I am to have Janet as my wife!
Well, I know many other people who have been where I have been on this issue and I just thought I’d share my thoughts and hope it will help you work your way through your healing process. Ride safe…
Posted in Riding Tips
Tagged Abs, ABS Brakes, accident, blessing, brakes, broken bones, cars, dangerous, encouraged, fatigued, Goldwing, healing, hospital, hurt, internal bleeding, mental skid, Motorcycle, motorcycle ride, Motorcycle Touring, motorcycle travel, motorcycle trip, Motorcycles, motorcycling, physical, rested, safety, sun, trucks, unfamiliar cities, what ifs, wife, wing
These are some of my favorite links. I will add to them as time goes by… so check back from time to time… I hope you like them as much as I do.
People Sharing Jesus
This is the website of Crestview Baptist Church, our (Ivan & Janet’s) church home. If you do not have a church home we would like to invite you to attend with us through the internet. You can listen to each Sunday service by clicking on this link and you may listen to the sanctuary Bible study class also. The sermon and Bible study are usually posted by Sunday afternoon. Or if you are in the area you have a church home here. You may also want to checkout the sermon and Bible study archives on this page. Pastor Dan Wooldridge sermons have the Lords hand on them and Rev. Jack Phelps Bible studies are the most insightful I have ever been to and both are relative for today.
Reverendbiker’s Home Page
This is Reverend Jack Phelps’ (see above) website. To say he is an interesting guy would be an understatement. He a guy’s guy (taboos to prove it) and he’s not afraid to show it. If you haven’t checked out his website what are you waiting for. You won’t be sorry. And don’t forget to checkout the Bible Study he teaches here.
Blogs I Follow
Observations of a perpetual motorcyclist is, as the name suggests, the observations of David Cooper. David has been a motorcyclist since age 3, and have been “on-road” since 17. David is in his 42nd year. David rides for pleasure as well as for transport, and teaches other people to ride as part of the NSW Roads and Traffic Authorities Compulsory Motorcycle Rider Training and Testing Scheme.
Ride Texas Magazine
This is a great magazine for information about riding in Texas and the surrounding area… and that is a big area. If you wonder, “What’s down that road?” RIDE TEXAS® is for you. Ride Texas has been exploring the back roads, byways and small towns of Texas and the neighboring states since 1998. It’s a quarterly travel journal for the type of travel you love, exploring on two wheels.
Road Runner Magazine
RoadRunner magazine is dedicated to serving active motorcycle enthusiasts by providing them with a comprehensive resource of national and international tours, exciting and picturesque new places to ride, and valuable information on new motorcycles and products that enhance their riding experience.
I like this magazine for a number of reasons, namely motorcycle reviews, gear reviews, touring stories, the photos, its blog and forum. Plus they send free stuff to review from time to time.
Since I got my Goldwing nearly everything I’ve added to the wing I have bought from Wing Stuff. I became a VIP member to get even better deals on their merchandise. I also like the reviews on the products as well a helpful information on installing the products.
Daughters’ Blog & Website
This is my oldest daughter’s blog. She like me suffered for years from really bad migraine headaches. She found that she could control hers by eating a gluten and dairy free diet. She has been collecting recipes that are gluten and dairy free and wants to share them with whomever would like to try them. Have a look and tell her I sent you.
This is my other daughters (Youngest) website. She and her husband offer a coaching service specializing in endurance sports. They create custom plans to fit your personal needs and schedule.
Some of the sports they specialize in:
- Triathlons- Sprint to Ironman distance
- Duathlons- All Distances
- Adventure Races- sprint to 24 hour races
- Running events-any distance including adventure/mud runs
- Cycling- Road racing, Time Trials, Mountain biking, and Bike Rides (MS 150)
They cater to all ability levels. From those aspiring to do their first race and finish to others looking to win their age group, category or accomplish elite status.
Artwork & Note cards for Nature Lovers… as seen through the eyes of a child. Graydon McKoy is 9 years old and is the owner, artist & reptile hunter. All proceeds go to sponsor a child in Niger, Africa and pay for a mission trip to Costa Rica, buy playground equipment for his church.
I was impressed and that is why his link is here. Have a look.
Posted in Miscellaneous
Tagged Adventure Races, back roads, Bible study, blog, blogs, byways, church, coaching, coconut mama, Crestview Baptist Church, dairy free, Dan Woolridge, diet, Duathlon, enthusiasts, experience, forum, free stuff, gear, gluten free, Goldwing, headaches, home, international, Ironman, Jack Phelps, journal, links, Magazine, Magazines, Merchandice, migraines, Motorcycle, Motorcycle Touring, motorcycling, motorcyclist, national, new, new motorcycles, observations, People sharing Jesus, perpetual, picturesque, places, products, recipes, religious, resource, Reverendbikers, reviews, ride, Ride Texas, Rider Magazine, riding, Road Runner, Running events, sermon, small towns, tours, travel, Triathlon, Trifit XT, two wheels, VIP, wing, wingstuff