Fear the Reaper

I’ve looked the reaper in the face more times than anyone would ever want to. Too many risks perhaps, especially upon a bullet bike. Saw him again three weeks ago when my companion and I were returning from camping, riding our Valkyrie Interstate on Utah’s Highway 12. Just south of Escalante the rear tire was punctured while we cruised at sixty miles per hour.

There’s a method involved in saving your life in such a precarious situation; stay off the brakes, pull the power off the back wheel with the clutch and coast her to a stop. The tire lost its bead and twisted on the rim before I could bring our loaded mount to halt, bucking us to a shoulder that didn’t exist, giving way instead to a drop of hundreds of feet into a steep canyon. We came to a stop inches short of killing ourselves.

And that was enough. I just bought the Valkyrie, a bike I’ve always wanted, looking forward to thousands of miles two-up with Mindy, something I’ve always wanted to do. But these desires were trumped that afternoon on Highway 12 at Powell Point overlook. A week later after careful and lamenting thought, we sold the Valkyrie along with Mindy’s Sportster and turned our attention back to water instead of asphalt.

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