By Joe Sparrow
It is late August and I have wrapped up another Sturgis adventure when I find out from the J&P team that I am asked to cruise along with the Geico Motorcycle sponsored Hot Bike Tour. Up until a few weeks ago, I hadn’t even heard of the Hot Bike Tour so I was heading into a new adventure and not knowing what to expect. Leaving from the Wharf Rat Rally in Digby, Nova Scotia a couple days early gave me four days to travel the 2,000 miles to get to the Hot Bike Tour kickoff point in Spirit Lake, Iowa. Spirit Lake is the home of the Victory Motorcycle assembly plant. I learn that the Hot Bike Tour is a thousand mile tour lasting five days that starts in Spirit Lake, Iowa and ends in Billings, Montana. Nightly stops include Mitchell, South Dakota, Rapid City, South Dakota, and Sheridan, Wyoming. Sounds like a good time to me.
Not only is it a tour across the beautiful upper Midwest and into Montana but about thirty of the top bike builders are invited to show their bike-building talent and to prove that their creations are “riders” and not “trailer queens”. The tour was open to anyone that wanted to ride along and it didn’t make a difference what make of motorcycle you were riding or whether you rode the whole five days or just one day. The riders that went the full thousand miles were designated as “Longriders.” Turn by turn instructions were handed out for each daily ride and it was a personal choice to go-it alone or ride with other people. This is truly a laid back ride.
Check out the photos because I saw some amazing things, met some awesome new friends and had a super time doing only about 200-300 miles per day, which is a cake walk. I highly recommend the tour and it is a great time to meet other riders, custom builders, and see sights few get to see on two wheels.
For full coverage of the Hot Bike Tour watch for articles in Hot Bike, Baggers and Street Choppers magazines. Next years’ event will be in the Smokey Mountains of North Carolina, Tennessee and possibly Northern Georgia.