“In a car you're always in a compartment, and because you're used to it you don't realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV. You're a passive observer and it is all moving by you boringly in a frame.
On a cycle the frame is gone. You're completely in contact with it all. You're in the scene, not just watching it anymore, and the sense of presence is overwhelming.” ― Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values
My name is Sandra Polichetti and I am the Vice President of the Orange County Dualies, a dual sport motorcycle club based out of Orange County, CA. What drew me to riding was the overall emotional and sensory experience associated with it. The anticipation, excitement, fear, curiosity, anxiety, independence, fearlessness, frustration, accomplishment, joy, pride, and love relationship that you experience on a motorcycle journey is unparalleled.
I didn’t grow up riding. It was something that I found later in life with my husband. He is a very skilled motorcyclist and rides every single day. However, I remember my dad always having a passion for motorcycles while growing up, but having four kids didn’t really allow for him to go out and ride as often as I’m sure he would’ve liked. Riding provides an avenue to share something with husband and my father (as they are both Dualies members). Below is a vintage picture of my father in the desert with his 1978 Yamaha YZ400.
The Dualies were formed in 1994 by a group of motorcycle enthusiasts. Today, we are a recognized 501(3) (c) nonprofit organization and our mission is to raise funds for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation (PBTF) while also promoting dual sport motorcycle riding. We host monthly meetings, monthly group rides, and are involved heavily with the motorcycle community. The Dualies host two big charity rides per year (one in January and one in May). This year’s "Palms to Pines Charity Ride" will be based out of Banning, CA and will explore areas of the San Jacinto forest, Hemet, and Idyllwild. The route will consist easy-to-challenging options for all skill levels and will take place on May 14, 2016. We encourage all riders to come out, participate, and have fun for a great cause! More information can be found below:
I have ridden through beautiful scenery here in the states and have seen incredible things such as Zion and Death Valley. I have also ridden through Europe on one of the most coveted dual sport motorcycles, a BMW r1200gs. Riding through the twisty roads of the Austrian Alps, tiny villages of the Czech Republic, and bustling city of Prague not only challenged me as a motorcyclist, but also as a person. The experiences I have had on a motorcycle are some that I will never forget.
Even though I have seen a lot of things, I still feel very fortunate to be from one of the best areas you can be in for off-road adventure and dual sport riding. Some of the best things you can see are right here in our own backyard! Dual Sport Riding offers a freedom of going wherever you can on both street and dirt, and the Dualies are about setting a foundation for riders to find and enjoy everything that Southern California has to offer.
I think it's really important to reach out to the motorcycle community especially by encouraging women riders to join. For me, being on a motorcycle is also about meeting new people and sharing an adventure. I attended my first Babes Ride Out event last year, and had the most amazing time. I met great women who shared incredible stories. I encourage all of you to check out the Dualies if you are interested in offroading and to also please come out to our Palms to Pines Charity Ride. I’m not the best rider, nor the fastest, but I do enjoy the challenge. I’m continuously learning about motorcycles as well as myself and will be doing so again as I attend Babes Ride Dirt 2. See you there and always ride safe!