Babes Ride Out

Babes Ride Out East Coast 2

Meet Walter from Kickstart Cycle Supply

Ashmore Ellis

I first met Walter in CA the soon heading out to the east coast to ride the Gypsy Run in the lower Catskills in 2013. The ride was incredible and I met a handful of ladies I am still friends with today. Some say Walt is best friends with Bon Jovi, others claim they have seen him choke a bear with one hand, in any case, Walt is a legend and even though he looks tough, this guy is the biggest sweetheart there is. We've been lucky enough to call him a friend every since and he has been a huge supporter of Babes Ride Out East Coast. Walt will be up by the camp store Sunday morning from 7 AM - 11 AM to check tire pressure, provide tools, and help ensure your bike is road worthy for the ride home. Make sure to stop by if want to get your bike looked at by a professional. 

 

 

 

 

Rain or Shine We Ride | Tips and Tricks on Riding in the Rain from Bitwell

SponsorsAshmore Ellis

Rain or shine, we RIDE! The weather in the Catskills is a little unpredictable. If it says it's going to rain, it may or it may not.  If you do see a little rain coming, time your ride around radar (its 2017 and technology is rad, use it!) The good news is that we've got a huge barn where you'll be entertained, hang out, and crack a cold one all while staying dry. Our advice is be resourceful, pull over & have a coffee while you wait it out if needed, and always have a few trash bags on you to create makeshift rain gear or cover your camping equipment/clothes (hopefully you took our advice on the waterproof compression sacks) if you get caught in a down pour. This is motorcycling and "weather" you like it or not, you will eventually need to face the rain. <--- see what I did there!? Seriously.. a dad joke and a metaphor? I am on FIRE!  Anywho, we asked Mike Ellis of Biltwell his top tricks & tricks on staying dry when crap weather rolls in. Read on and remember, weather changes hourly so stay up to date using accuweather. 

There’s not much worse than being out on your freedom machine during an epic adventure and getting your ass handed to you by mother nature. Here’s a handful of tips to help you prepare for the rain you are bound to hit if you are on an extended 2 wheel trip.

Image by Geoff Kowalchuk

Image by Geoff Kowalchuk

Plan Ahead

You don’t always need rain and/or cold weather gear, but there’s only a handful of trips we’ve been on that having either wouldn’t of helped. However, it can be a hassle to load up that extra bit of gear that you may not need. The best way to make a good decision either way is to check the weather on a site like www.accuweather.com for the days you will be passing through various destinations. If there’s a slight chance of rain anywhere you are going, you are bound to find it on the bike. Remember, the more ground you cover in a day, the more the weather is likely to change on you.

For me, the things that are most important to keep dry and warm are my hands. I almost always travel with a separate set of gloves to help me out on the rough days. My feet would have to be the next priority, so I always waterproof my boots and now I’ve even stepped up to traveling with a set of booties when I have enough space in my gear bag.

Improvise

So you decided to pack a 12 pack of Coors Light instead of the rain gear? No worries. Here’s a few tricks to help you out when you see the rain coming.

Once you start getting rained on, find shelter and check the weather. With any luck, it will pass soon and you will be able to wait it out. Anyone who has been rained on while riding can tell you it does not take long before you are completely soaked. Best to try and avoid it if you can.

Make due with whatever you can. Trash bags, rubber gloves and duct tape are your friends. You can find them at almost any rest stop or grocery store. Go nuts and do what it takes to keep from getting soaked. 

Pro tip: Don’t forget about your luggage. You’ll be bummed when you get to your destination and want to change into something dry and discover all your shit is wet. Trash bags are cheap, wrap your gear up, too.

Setting Up Camp

Speed is of the essence here, so try and team up with someone else to get your tent up as fast as possible. Once you are done with your camp, make sure to help them as well. When bad weather hits, it’s usually windy which can make pitching a tent a struggle.

Once your camps are set up, pay attention to where you park your bike. Under shelter is obviously the best case. 

If you can’t get your bike under shelter, at least make sure it is parked on a hard surface (asphalt or concrete being ideal). If you can’t find a hard surface, park it on some grass. Parking your bike on dirt during the rain can make it a bitch to get out because you might wake up to a mud puddle or it laying on the ground.

Pro Tip: Pay attention to how your helmet is sitting. Don’t turn it into a rain catcher by hanging it upside down on the bars. Also, cover your air cleaner and seat with plastic bags if they are exposed. A wet air cleaner might not allow your bike to start and a wet seat will keep your butt cold all day and may never dry out depending on the weather for the rest of your trip.

Cover your air cleaner and seat with plastic bags if they are exposed. A wet air cleaner might not allow your bike to start.&nbsp;

Cover your air cleaner and seat with plastic bags if they are exposed. A wet air cleaner might not allow your bike to start. 

In any case, try to enjoy the experience and embrace the suffering if need be. You are lucky to be out on two wheels and on an adventure. Sometimes you have to work for it - Mike Ellis 

We've rented out this pavilion to ensure you have a proper place to hang out and stay dry during Babes Ride Out East Coast 2.

We've rented out this pavilion to ensure you have a proper place to hang out and stay dry during Babes Ride Out East Coast 2.

 

 

Presenting Vans Girls x BRO East Coast 2 Artist Series Skate Decks

Artist SeriesAnya Violet

This year for Babes Ride Out East Coast 2, Vans Girls is proud to introduce the House Of Vans artist series. Vans Girls have partnered with designer, Jenna of Vichcraft, and tattoo artist, Minka Sicklinger to raffle off two custom skateboard decks.

Minka Sicklinger

Minka Sicklinger is an artist who was born in The Netherlands, grew up in Australia and lived many places in between before finding her way to America, where she is now based. She collects treasures which inform and inspire the iconic symbolism and patterning of her work that finds its way onto paper, metal, flesh, and fabric. Through her art she seeks to find ritual and ceremony in the routine and practices of everyday existence.

@minkasicklinger

Jenna Blazevich

Vichcraft is the independent and collaborative, multi-disciplinary studio of Jenna Blazevich. With a focus on visual storytelling, she strives to craft charmingly unique brand and product experiences. Combining hand-craft processes and tactile mediums with a digital design skill-set, Vichcraft strives to work right around the line between art and design to visually translate intersectional feminist ideas.

@vichcraft

Tips and Tricks on How to Prepare for Babes Ride Out East Coast 2

EventsAshmore Ellis

So! You are coming to Babes Ride Out East Coast 2 in beautiful Narrowsburg, NY! We can't wait to have you join us. Our private campsite is located at the Landers River's Narrowsburg group site and is walking distance to the heart of town where you can easily find gas, a liquor stores, little bars & grills, incredible places for lunch or snacks, and some locally owned shops set up down a quaint main street. There is also a campstore on site that has literally everything you may have forgotten to bring as well. Even though the town has a lot to offer it's best to ALWAYS come prepared so if it's been a minute since you have been camping we have put together a quick list of must haves and things to consider.

7 days worth of clothes thanks to compression sacks! YEW!&nbsp;

7 days worth of clothes thanks to compression sacks! YEW! 

  • Have your bike serviced BEFORE you come to the event. Make sure that baby is tuned up and roadworthy! 
  • Add the $35 100 mile moto towing to your AAA package. It's good for a year and YES, I have had to use mine before and it's saved me a ton of cash. If you bike breaks down, this is like having a guardian angel. We are not responsible for towing your bike or getting you to the event or home after the event. 
  • Tent/Hammock (tons of trees at this site for shade)
  • Sleeping Pad
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Headlamp
  • Water Bottle w/ clip (we have potable water on site to fill your bottles)
  • Wet Wipes / Face wipes 
  • EXTRA toilet paper 
  • Pillow (camp size)
  • Extra fuel (check out Lowbrow Customs fuel canister at $19.95)
  • Warm clothes (HOT TIP! Waterproof compression sacks can fit everything you need and more)
  • Clothes for extreme heat & humidity
  • Zip ties
  • A couple of sandwich bags in case it rains and you need to create a waterproof way of carrying your iphone.
  • Multitool
  • Tool kit / roll
  • Swimsuit
  • Flip flops (super shitty ones for the shower)
  • Bug spray... seriously, you'll want this!
  • $$ always have cash on you no matter what. A lot of times banks will cut off your card as you nickel and dime your visa at the gas pump or a state park will require a small fee. 
  • $$ for merch
  • $$ for food truck
  • $$ for coffee
  • Camera or GoPro
  • Positive mental attitude

As always, check the weather before you roll to know if you will be needing rain gear. Click HERE to see what the forecast is calling for. If you need to get anything, we highly recommend going to backcountry.com or REI  they have it all and you still have time to order these supplies online before the event. Happy camping! - Ashmore 

Roll Call | Meet Genevieve Davis from Vans

Roll CallAshmore Ellis

We met Genevieve Davis at our first ever "no so event" dubbed Babes in Borrego in 2013. Since then, Genevieve has been to every single Babes Ride Out event. She is an amazing photographer (you may have seen her work all over vans.com, our zine 1 & 2, in the Poler gallery in Laguna) and one of the nicest girls you will ever meet. Get to know more about her, her experience at the first ever Babes in Borrego, and what the vibe was like at the first Babes Ride Out East Coast last year. 

BRO East Coast 2016 | Deleware River&nbsp;

BRO East Coast 2016 | Deleware River 

Tell us about your typical day at work:
The majority of my day-to-day is spent shooting new product for the Vans.com web banners & social media channels, sometimes in our in-house studio & sometimes in different outdoor environments. When I’m not shooting product, I’m photographing artist portraits/profiles, lifestyle, BTS, corporate headshots, events...a little bit of everything. The variety definitely keeps it interesting.

Tell us about the history of the company or culture:
Vans was born in Southern California in 1966 as the Van Doren Rubber Company. The company’s roots and history lie heavily in SoCal skateboarding culture. In the 50 years since its inception Vans has expanded its platform to all forms of creativity and expression, including but not limited to action sports, art, fashion, and music. However you choose to express yourself creatively, we are here for it. I grew up playing in the waves of Laguna Beach & bombing hills on skateboards when I was a kid. I was a roller derby athlete as an adult. I’ve always been heavily into music & I’ve always been an artist so all of these pillars Vans supports are genuinely important to me & are something I’m proud to stand by both in & out of the office. 

Flower fields as far as the eye could see at Babes Ride Out East Coast&nbsp;

Flower fields as far as the eye could see at Babes Ride Out East Coast 

Inside headquarters there is an emphasis on kindness, family, giving back to the community & what we call “the Van-Doren Spirit.” Tomorrow we are taking a day off work to do a beach cleanup. In a few weeks one of my coworkers organized a day for the creative department to build skateboards for local underprivileged kids. I once saw Steve Van Doren literally give the shoes off his feet to a stranger who complimented his shoes and walk out of an event barefoot. And if that isn’t enough, Vans builds skateparks and venues in communities across the nation, and we support rad events I feel are super important-like Babes Ride Out. It’s a company culture I’m really proud to be a part of. 

Any NEW Vans or Vans Girl projects in the works?
Honestly I’m probably the wrong person to ask, since I am kind of the last person to find out about stuff coming down the pipeline. I will say there’s a pretty rad women’s motorcycle-inspired pack that will be out in Fall 2017 I’m about to go shoot. I wouldn’t be surprised if all the hype behind BRO helped inspire that one!

Tell us a little about yourself and how you got into motorcycles:
As stated earlier I was fortunate enough to grow up in Laguna Beach, CA. I love dogs (really all critters), I have a passion for the outdoors, music, & photography which I believe is a direct response to growing up in the time and town that I did. 

I have been on wheels for as long as I can remember, first on rollerblades when I was little, skateboarding later in my youth, in college I played roller derby & motorcycles just seemed like the next natural progression to going fast on wheels.

When I was 19 I dated a guy with a vintage triumph and immediately fell in love with the machine. The relationship didn’t last very long but my lusting after his motorcycle did. At no point did I have any desire to ride on the back, I wanted my own immediately. I got my license when I was 20, saved for 3 years & bought a 1974 honda CB360 that didn’t run for $900. That same ex-boyfriend with the Triumph ended up becoming one of my best friends & helped me bring the Honda back to life years later. I’ve been hooked ever since.

Did I mention I love nature? The best part of riding for me is exploring-and truly becoming-different landscapes. I abhor riding in the city-it stresses me out, but being on a two-lane highway in the mountains of Colorado or the Valleys of Utah or the coastal twisties of Big Sur, breathing and feeling and leaning into the environment and the landscape-that’s paradise. 

You came to the first ever Babes Ride Out ever in 2013. How was that experience for you and what is your best memory?
Super rad. I feel like I was a part of history. I sprained my wrist the week before & my Honda was acting up, I almost didn’t go but my friend T-Bone talked me into it. I’m so glad she did. My other friend Machine had been riding for a long time, way longer than I, and seeing her in awe of that many women in one place, I knew this was unlike anything else. You guys had screen printed like, 30 shirts I think, & I almost didn’t buy one. Machine goes “buy a shirt. Trust me. This is gonna be huge.” I’m so glad she talked me into that one because I treasure that shirt now.

It was such an inspiring experience, I wrote a poem that was later turned into a song called “Anza Borrego” when I was coming home from that trip. It’s still my favorite thing I’ve ever written. I knew two women who rode prior to Babes in Borrego, but that initial trip put me hip to so many women who have to this day become my best riding friends. After BRO Borrego a fraction of us who had met there did this 10 day trip up to Washington & back that summer. That wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t been in at BIB. 

BRO JT has grown into this huge, awesome, well-oiled event, but the first one was so special because it was just a rugged, punk rock, DIY camp out. Literally like Ashmore & Anya posted a flier on instagram, 50 of us caught wind of it through word of mouth, nobody fucking knew each other & we all cruised down to camp in the dirt. It was rowdy. I remember after we got to the campsite all the girls were riding their street bikes on this wide, dried up lakebed just throttling it back & forth celebrating & having fun. I rode on the back of my friend Mel’s Harley that weekend since I couldn’t ride due to my wrist. It was a damn good time. 

Stunner!&nbsp;

Stunner! 

You came to our first ever BABES EC. Tell us about the experience:
Literally magic. I geek out hard on nature and landscapes, and being on the east coast is such a different environment than the west coast. The woods are just gorgeous, & there are lakes and waterfalls to ride by and to. We don’t have much architecture or history on the west coast, but on the east coast they have these buildings and barns from the 1800s that are so beautiful. Brittany Wood & I rode from Boston to Narrowsburg & going through all these small colonial towns & woods & cobblestone was just a dream. I think Virginia Hall came up with a lot of the routes from Narrowsburg right? Man she did an amazing job, some of those rides felt like riding through a fairytale. 

Old Barns? We've got plenty at BRO East Coast&nbsp;

Old Barns? We've got plenty at BRO East Coast 

What did you like the most?
Definitely the Big Indian Rivers route. Holy S*** so beautiful. 

Any words of wisdom to ladies who may be on the fence about attending Babes Ride Out EC2?
If you have the ability to go-GO! Seriously do not miss out. If BRO Joshua Tree is like Coachella, BRO EC is like Woodstock. That’s a shitty metaphor bc BRO JT is way cooler than Coachella, but the point I’m trying to make is BRO EC is mellow, it’s beautiful, the vibe is so chill & relaxed, it’s easy to make friends & there is a nice diversity between bikes and bikers. Don’t sleep on this one because you will have So. Much. Fun.

Adventuring off the path&nbsp;

Adventuring off the path 

Babes Ride Out East Coast campsite

Babes Ride Out East Coast campsite

Meet BRO EC 2 Raffle Contributor Chris Lesser of Union Garage

PeopleAshmore Ellis

Babes Ride Out is a ladies only event but that doesn't mean we have don't have heaps of support and help from the guys. We looked to partner with the best east coast people & places and in the process have met so many incredible people including Chris Get to know East Coast 2 raffle contributor Chris Lesser of Union Garage located in Brooklyn NY. 

Image by Ethan Covey

Image by Ethan Covey

Name: Chris Lesser, Union Garage
Website: uniongaragenyc.com    
Instagram: @uniongaragenyc

I run a store called Union Garage that sells motorcycle gear—helmets, jackets, boots, gloves and accessories. We’re a specialty shop in that we don’t sell or repair bikes. A lot of gear comes from dealerships that treat the category as an afterthought. With us, it’s all we do, and we take it seriously. As of this fall we’ll have been at it for 5 years. I’ve been riding motorcycles for about 15, and started the store because it’s the shop I wish I could have been able to walk into when I first started riding. Everything we sell has a strong safety story, from urban gear for getting around town to leather jackets or three-season textile gear for getting across country.

Image provided by Ethan Covey

Image provided by Ethan Covey

What do you love most about what you do?

I’m never bored! We’ve grown from a 300 square foot glorified broom closet into a proper 3,000 square foot showroom. We’re currently in the middle of re-launching our website which I’m really excited about because it will better project the in-store experience to our online customers. All the info and insights that someone gets from being in store—that’s been hard to replicate. And it’s impossible to really replicate, but I think we can do a better job of explaining what we carry and why. We also have a great staff. Everyone who works here “gets it” and is on board with providing good honest service. And I think it’s working, we’ve got almost a full 5 star ratings on Yelp, Google, Facebook, etc. We have a really low-pressure sales schtick. All the work goes into getting the gear together, and when people come in we just spend a lot of time talking and going through the physics of crashing a motorcycle, or riding one through inclement weather, then we let the inventory do the talking. And while I’ve made some great connections with our online customers and we’ve shipped orders to some far-flung corners of the globe through the website, I love meeting all the people who walk through the door. 

Being in New York City we’ve got a pool of 25 million people in easy striking distance to the shop, plus a lot more who come through the city for work or pleasure from all over the world. Because we are such a specialty shop (we don’t also do haircuts, sell surfboards or even casual clothing—everything is literally and directly related to motorcycle riding) pretty much everyone who comes in is a rider. We’re definitely a destination shop and it’s gratifying to see people make the trip out and walk away glad they did.

And finally, I also love the feeling that we’re actually providing a genuine service. At the end of the day, we sell safety gear. And our market is very crowded with poorly designed options. It’s been rewarding to have an opportunity to present this curated collection of quality gear, and to see people come in and appreciate it, and leave better equipped than when they came in.

Tell us about motorcycles in your life:
 
I first got into motorcycles at 21, in 2001 while still in college in Vermont. Having ridden mountain bikes and worked in bicycle shops I found myself wanting to take a cross country trip, but not in a car. My research landed me on an old BMW —a 1976 R75/6. The first time I ever rode a motorcycle was the day I bought it and I never looked back. 

I knew nothing when I got the bike and learned as I went. I always kept a bike in my life and five years ago saw the opportunity to start the shop and here we are. I’ve since had a series of other old BMW’s. It’s become a bit of a habit. I’ve had a couple older Moto Guzzis too (fundamentally very similar) and I’ve always been a fan of older bikes. The technology behind them is so much more accessible and elemental, and still capable of carrying a rider across country at speeds plenty fast enough to keep things exciting.

I need to branch out and am probably buying a friend’s KTM 690 Enduro this summer. I’ve also spent quite a bit of time on our shop bike—a Kawasaki KZ1000P. It’s an old police bike I bought from a customer. We use it for the Gentleman’s Ride and we’ve moto-paced local bicycle races with it. It was always sort of a joke but the thing just doesn’t die. Plus the lights and sirens still work which makes it extra fun riding around town. 

And I got really into Euro Baggers a couple summers ago. As my “babymoon” to myself before my daughter was born (Alexandra’s now 1.5 years old, Zach is 4) I took a trip with a good friend up to Nova Scotia on old 80’s bikes loaded up with gear. The novelty has since worn off and I just sold the Moto Guzzi California II on eBay. The new owner in Australia promises to let me ride it whenever I make it out. Gotta love the connections motorcycling can make for you. 

How did you hear about Babes Ride Out?

I’m sure it was through Instagram. Between Babes Ride Out and a few other women’s rides like it there seems to be a real movement bubbling up of more women riding, supporting each other, planning trips. We have the Missfires group here locally that I always point to as a great example – it’s cool to see more groups and rides coming together. It’s something we want to absolutely support however we can.
 
What makes you interested in supporting Babes Ride Out?

What’s not to love?! I recently became aware the specific statistic that 13% of motorcycle riders in the U.S. are women. That’s based on motorcycle registration figures, and the ratio goes up to 25% if you count women who ride as passengers too.

The more women riding, the better. Of course we’re selfishly motivated here too as we do sell and support quite a bit of women’s gear. In terms of proportion of jacket and glove options compared to men’s, we definitely stock more than 13% of the store with women’s gear. I know for some big companies the women’s category can be a loss leader. Seems more like a growth opportunity to me. 

We have one customer Tracy Keeping who always comes to mind on this subject. She came on one of our early shop rides back in 2013 and we encouraged her to do it even though she was nervous about whether her new-to-her Honda Rebel 300 would make it. She came and had a blast and now she’s got a Yamaha Bolt and an FJ-09, and she’s planning a big Route 66 ride this summer. It’s cool we had a small part in encouraging and enabling her.

What do you love most about riding in your area? 

The dirty little secret about riding in NYC is that it’s probably the worst place to have a motorcycle. Bikes get rained on, snowed on, pissed on, knocked over, towed and ticketed at a higher rate than maybe anywhere else in the country. That said, I always say it’s a testament to how great motorcycles are that so many people jump through the hoops to keep a bike in the city.

And motorcycles here definitely have their benefits. Lane-splitting is technically illegal in every state but California but I like to think of it as the British do—they call it “filtering”—which makes it seem so much more civilized, and legal. And parking is a cinch. Of course in the dead of summer nobody likes sweating through their jacket, but in spring and fall a motorcycle is hands down the most pleasant way to get around the city. Sure beats the subway.

I used to live in Southern California and it was great having so many beautiful roads and riding areas. But one thing I’ve come to love about New York is that it’s slow. That sounds weird, but from a gear/risk/liability perspective for everyday living, riding around NYC is a lower-stakes bet than riding around LA, where you might just be going to get lunch or commute to work, but that means you’re on the highway doing 70. In NYC the nominal speed limit is 25MPH, and everyone goes faster than that, but overall it’s a densely populated megalopolis that’s really easy to navigate by bike. And relative to public transportation or driving/parking, motorcycles are still loads faster, and more fun.

Any favorite rides to do upstate?

The usual escape route is to get up to Harriman State Park. It’s the best network of quality roads within easy striking distance and for that reason I’ve ridden it to death. The Delaware Water Gap and the Catskills areas also are usual suspects and worth getting out to. Lately I’ve been poking around New Jersey and Connecticut more just to find fresh roads. These days I ride about every day getting to the shop or running errands. The out-and-backs are fun but I got into this racket for taking longer trips and hopefully there are more coming for me soon – I’m due! 

Image by Courtesy-Blaine-Davis

Image by Courtesy-Blaine-Davis

Anything we left out?

We do a bi-annual women’s weekend and open house at the store, at the beginning and end of every riding season. This fall will be our fourth installment. We’ve had speakers come, brands like Worse for Wear and BH&BR come out with expanded product selection, and we’ve started to run women’s rides too. Guys can come but only as a plus-one. 

Also we’ve made a couple in-house products, the first one being the Robinson Jacket. We’ve long had in the pipeline a women’s version of that —the Mrs. Robinson—and hope to have it done by fall. I’ve always said men have it hard finding good gear to choose from. “Pink it and Shrink it” seems to be the prevailing product design ethos for women’s moto gear, plus representing just a fraction of the market, women’s gear seems like an underserved category. We’re hoping to make it better. We keep a dedicated women’s section at the store and online at uniongaragenyc.com/shop/womens. Most of the gear in-store is on the website but sometimes it takes a minute for the new stuff to get online. Anyone who hasn’t come to the store I’d encourage them to come check us out. We love hearing from women about what gear works or does not. 

STORE INFORMATION

101 Union St
Brooklyn, NY 11231
(718) 594-7093

TUES-FRI: 12-7
SAT: 11-6
SUN: 12-6
*CLOSED MONDAYS