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Having turned 63 this past September I feel age creeping up on me. SOFLA traffic keeps my riding skills pretty well honed. 😃 I haven't taken a long trip in a while. My riding buddy decided that he was done. We have been best friends since high school. Trying to find my way as a solo traveler on the bike. 

Keep on motoring!!!! 

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"It doesn't matter who walks in, you know the joke is still the same"  Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. USA

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I'm not old, just well used.

Wish I could retire but can't afford due to circumstances beyond my control. 

Bought the FJ to tour on but in 55k still really haven’t. 

Maybe next year...

Rinse and repeat 

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Yep, it ain't the mileage as much as the hard driving, eh.

63 years of " balls to the wall living", accidents, injuries, heavy manual labor and far too much alky+ various mind/body altering substances has me feeling the Reaper breathing down my neck the last year or so. I don't ride near as much now as I should or would like; I can still pull a 500+ mile day, yet even a couple 100 miles and I'm feeling it the next day.

I need to get out more on the bikes before I get any older....

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Just turned 72 last Friday.  Been riding since '67 or maybe '68 (Don't remember).

I'm glad to know I'm not the only one what would rather ride solo.  I occasionally rode with my daughter and grandson just for the family time, but other than that I dislike riding with others for reasons others have already addressed.

It's been a long time since I've done more than 200-ish miles for any reason.  Virtually all of my riding is day rides, usually around 100 miles.  Combination of discomfort and no real reason to go further.  Plus, while my wife supports my need to ride, being gone overnight would not set well without a VERY good reason.  I don't have any major issues with back pain, mostly my bony butt lets me know it's time to get off the bike for a while.  One of the reasons I love the FJ is the upright riding position.

I feel like my skills are still more than adequate and I do ride...um..."exuberantly".  In fact I had a little chat with Smokey just the other day...:o  :-\

Like anybody that's aging, I'm slowing down a little here and there, but I'm watching carefully for any deterioration in balance or reaction times serious enough to affect my ability to ride safely.   Pretty sure I'll know when it's time to hang up the helmet.

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Saturday for the 2nd time, Prior was last year, I rode with a 26 year old (A year younger than my youngest) who's skilled enough.

 On the way outbound of a 265 mile day. When we stopped he asked me if I ride alone a lot. I answered in the affirmative. He said he could tell because I made passes and stop signs expecting him to ride his own pace and catch up.

 I said I understand.

Yesterday I rode with a 57 year old who's somewhat of a new be and never really ridden much with anyone else, and was on a 98 Nighthawk.  Consequently I took it very easy and gave him pointers on many topics. It was difficult for me to ride slow and actually cause me to make some mistakes which he didn't see because he was so far behind me but I always waited for him at terms and when he was too far behind to be sure he was OK.

 Bottom line is ridng with other people, no more than 2 or 3, who aren't at my skill level is very difficult And not enjoyable.

 I have slowed down in my old age and become even more cautious but still have the Need for Speed.

When I don't anymore I know it'll be time to stop.

 In the meantime, while not as safe, as you should always swim with a buddy, I prefer riding alone for the most part for reasons stated above.

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If there is one other thing to add to the 'death and taxes' list of things that unavoidably occur, it is Growing Older.  Actually, I nowadays never say 'I'm growing old' or 'I'm getting old' - I AM old.   Had my 83rd birthday on October 2nd, and reluctantly parted company with my last bike, a 2019 MT-09 Tracer GT, just a few weeks earlier.   It had been beyond any doubt time to quit before something bad happened to me and/ or other road users.   

In recent months, and more gradually over the past cuppla years, I had felt increasingly less confident and less comfortable on the bike and on the road, my concentration was beginning to lag, and reaction-times were down.   

Touch wood, I never had an accident on the road, and only one zero-kph 'drop' due to my foot slipping on a gravelly parking spot in a motel - no damage to bike or self.   

I was a longtime rusted-on BMW rider until those bikes became too bulky and heavy for me: the move to Yamaha - Tracers: SPs: GT - was a good one as these bikes were appreciably easier to handle, while giving every bit as much satisfaction. 

I heartily second the 'riding alone' comments - after some years of group riding with a Club I found the freedom of solo riding refreshing and vastly to be preferred.   Long-distance touring was always my thing, but latterly that became too much to attempt thanks to the usual age-related physical wellbeing issues - but I miss it greatly.   The age-related wellbeing issues were not of the kind that would kill me - at least not directly! - but the most serious was the sudden out-of-the-blue onset of a form of vertigo a couple of years ago.   Medication resolved this, but two more episodes a few months apart compelled me to accept that I couldn't safely continue riding, so that was it, after very many years.   

The best part of my lengthy riding career was the few years from 1997, when my wife decided she'd like to learn to ride - so she did, and we had many memorable multi-week trips together up and down the east coast of Australia . 

Happy, happy days!

 

 

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Riding a fully-farkled 2019 MT-09 Tracer 900 GT from my bayside home in South East Queensland, Australia.   

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A very happy b-day and many more.

Will you consider Spyder again, or does one require too much upper body strength and endurance?

How about a Piaggio MP3 500?

BTW, my SOB biological father turned 100 last July and the Shewolf made to 95 until last December.

Only the good die young...

 

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No more Spyders - I developed arachniphobia after a short outing on one!   The MP3 500 is not available here.   But thanks for the thoughts...

Edited by wordsmith

Riding a fully-farkled 2019 MT-09 Tracer 900 GT from my bayside home in South East Queensland, Australia.   

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While I at 64 can't 'compete' with some of the contributor's ages in here, I'm really tempted to buy and wear this 'T'-shirt.... I think it's me! 😉

image.png.ab47f69180542e40342de5beee06a7ee.png

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2 hours ago, dazzler24 said:

While I at 64 can't 'compete' with some of the contributor's ages in here, I'm really tempted to buy and wear this 'T'-shirt.... I think it's me! 😉

image.png.ab47f69180542e40342de5beee06a7ee.png

 

Funny ... I'll often comment to my wife that someone in a store or parking lot "looks old." ... She'll just smile and say "Ya, he's probably the same age as you."

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Just turned 61 a month ago.  Had a nasty crash a year ago that made me think long and hard about selling both my motorcycles and giving up riding.  The accident was not my fault but shook me up a good bit and my left knee is still very slightly compromised, but not keeping me from doing anything I want or need to.

The short version is that I am still riding and like others, prefer going solo for the most part.  There are a couple guys who are good friends that I will ride with on occasion but definitely no group rides. 

I am fortunate that my wife let me decide if I wanted to keep riding after the accident as she knows how much it means to me, and she does not mind when I am gone on the bike for a few days as long as I check in by phone each time I stop, to let her know my location.

My health is quite good and exercising four to five days a week keeps me fairly fit for riding, so I feel blessed in that regard.  My 2019 Tracer 900 GT is the perfect bike for the way I ride!!

Edited by johnmark101
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There is nothing like spending a day riding with friends in the grip of a shared obsession.

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A few years back my brother and I took our dad on the trip we'd always dreamed of. For the Old Man's 80th, we set off on a two week, multi thousand mile adventure of Utah, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming. Despite our best efforts to ride the old goat into the ground, he was the one at the end of the day to say "that's all you got? I'm just getting started!". 

His trusty Shadow 1100, started showing signs of age and abuse toward the end of the trip. By the time we sputtered him home, the bike only ran on duct tape, wires, and miracles (we dubbed his bike "La Milagrosa", a riff of young Che Guevara's bike "La Poderosa"). 

That was the last ride he took. He ended up giving La Milagrosa away the following year. He knew his riding days were effectively done, and wanted to have his last ride be the best one. 

He's still with us, and not a week goes by that I don't thank him for imparting his love of motorcycles with me. I remember with great clarity being six years old when he put me on the back of his Ducati Mark 3, with the crazy low clip ons, and said "hang on". 

Three cheers for the octogenarians still on two wheels! 

IMG_20150629_103158309_HDR.jpg

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’70 Yamaha 125 Enduro; ’75 Honda CB360T; ’81 Yamaha XS650SH; ’82 Honda GL650 Silver Wing Interstate; ’82 Suzuki GS650L; ’87 Yamaha Virago 535; ’87 Yamaha FJ1200; ’96 Honda ST1100; ’99 Yamaha V-Star Classic; ’00 Suzuki SV650; ’07 BMW K1200GT; ’12 Suzuki DR200; ’15 Yamaha FJ-09.  Bold = current

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Something to keep in mind as we age is that generally we take increasing amounts of medicine for various afflictions. In some cases the side effects of the treatment compound the problems the affliction causes! All of us should be aware of the side effects of the meds we take. Some cause edema, some dizziness/lightheadedness, some fatigue and drowsiness, insomnia, etc. If a couple of our meds have the same identified side effect, such as drowsiness we need to keep that keenly in mind. A long-time riding buddy had his BP med changed. After a campout we often attended I headed home and he rode on with some other guys. Not too long after the group took off he fell asleep on the bike which left the road before a bridge over a creek. The bike hit a retaining wall and he was catapulted onto a grassy area, had barely a scratch. Lesson learned by him. Hope this helps someone.

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Older age makes motorcycling an iffy project.  In 2021, I decided that I was deteriorated enough at age 72 to resign from riding completely.  I sold my 2018 Harley Road Glide Ultra with 46k miles on it.  Got a good price 'cause of pandemic shortages.  I spent six months not riding.  For awhile there was no regret, but about six months in, I started getting an urge to think about a lighter bike.

One day I suddenly bought a 21 Yamaha Tracer 9 GT.  I didn't know a thing about the bike, and frankly didn't really care for its transformers appearance.  It was hard to ride for quite awhile as I adapted my old limbs to that new and more sporty posture.  Over a space of a few months, though, I grew to love the Tracer.  Indeed, even the looks of the bike have grown on me to the point that I love the way it looks, and often stand gazing at it sitting beside my 2022 Gold Wing.

Yes, after realizing that I didn't actually need to retire, I bought a Gold Wing Tour.  Emptied my savings account.  But I look at it this way: I still have a few days of riding left in me, and I intend to use them all, if I can.  The Wing is a MUCH easier to handle ride than my old FLTRU.  It is close to the ground and weighted in ways that make it easy for a geezer to deal with in parking and slow speed handling.  So, I went from no bikes due to age, to TWO bikes due to age.  And I'm still riding, averaging at least 100 miles of meandering, fuel burning, imitating SoCal commuters but going nowhere. The Wing is for me and the DW when she wants to ride with me, which is often.  And the Tracer is for zipping about, splitting traffic, acting like a kid.

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On principle I can't bring myself to buy a bike that's over 500 pounds. That is because I still wear rose colored glasses looking back at my youth buying, fixing, riding and selling 60s British singles, and racing 250 ~ 350 Japanese 2smokes. 750s were big bikes and I couldn't afford new or anything but basket cases unless I found a deal, which was not that difficult in San Diego, as it was the motorcycle tuning tuning capital of the world then. People think of LA and all the bikes and people who sold and worked on them, and developed them into racing bikes. There was a few very fast tuners who who broke speed records, pioneered engine technology and frame design. Yet all that I met including Don Vesco and Russ Collins up in LA we're very personable people because they also had a business they were running and knew anyone could be a customer.  Consequently, they took pity on me and helped me along in my 2 wheeled endeavors.

Which gets me back to today and that I only have bikes that are under 500 pounds, though engine power has more than doubled.  Likewise, suspension brakes, suspension, carburation, ignition and other electronic safety nets are new to me on the FJ, in a fisrt hand way.  Not that my other 2 primary bikes have bad suspension or poor carburation but it's a different feel because they're analog.

The bottom line for my current  physical condition is the FJ is challenging.  It has to do with its center of gravity due to its height not weight.   But whereas I've worked on and ridden Goldwings in the past, I can't see myself owning a near current one.  It would just overwhelm me.

My VTR has a much lower center of gravity being a 90° V twin and lower saddle on a minimalist frame and suspension, so I'm more comfortable on it except the leg room is now cramped due to my hips hips and back.   It's funny I bought the FJ for leg room and sit up n beg ergonomics, as my neck on the VTR suffered the most at that time, even though I'd increased bar height 3" and lowered the pegs an inch and a bit forward.  Doing 111k on the VTR makes it feel like an old trusty pair of jeans that I can only wear 150 miles. ( have you wondered why they call jeans a pair?).

My RD 400 is comparatively a bicycle and I'm a gorilla on it.

 Now I'm starting to get depressed not because of because of difficulty riding but because of the weather soon ending riding for the season.

Though my daughter in San Diego, I didn't raise no dummy, just texted me 10 pictures pictures of her apartment and cats.  It's a 2 bedroom.

Nudge nudge wink wink.

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