August 04, 2021

Motorcyclists explain thrills and fear of riding

For over a decade, bike night has major summer festivity in Creston. Dozens of bikers showed up Saturday at the 12th annual Elm’s Club Bike Night. There was music from Randy Burk, and Fat Moses later in the night. Food was provided by the Little Green Trailer.

One biker, Tyler Shepherd of Creston, said he has five motorcycles. He brought two of them to bike night. One is a 2018 Yamaha and the other is a 2001 Suzuki GSX. He said they both have top speeds of about 180 miles per hour, but the Yamaha “handles like a dream” compared to the Suzuki.

“I think it’s just the difference in years. You’ve got like 15 years of development and technology,” he said.

He said there are many similarities among the “big four” brands of Japanese motorcycles, which include Yamaha, Suzuki, Honda and Mitsibishi. The two major American brands include Harley Davidson and Indian.

He said safety is important and he almost always wears his helmet, which is a Shoei.

“It’s probably a mid-price range helmet. So it just has a better fit and better protection than a cheaper one,” he said.

He said one of the most common hazards bikers face is distracted drivers.

“It’s just like dealing with distracted drivers in your car, except it’s five times worse,” Shepherd said. “There’s a lot of people who just don’t pay attention.”

He said distracted drivers are something new bikers should keep in mind as they hit the road.

“Ride safe. Ride like no one can see you,” he said. Reflective gear and bright clothing can make a difference.

Shepherd said he became interested in motorcycles by watching videos about five years ago.

“Believe it or not, it was watching other motorcyclists on YouTube,” he said. “You just watch so many of them in a row and at some point I was like I want to stop watching the videos. I want to do what they’re doing in the videos. I want to do it myself.”

Adam Woosley said he first gained interest by riding dirt bikes as a child.

“My first bike when I was nine was a 50cc Yamaha,” he said.

Woosley said he loves Harleys for the distinct sound the engine makes, and he’s fond of his particular model because it’s great for road trips with his wife Timber.

“It provides great comfort for my wife and I,” he said, pointing to the large seat with a backrest.

He said over the past few years they’ve taken it to the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. More recently they went east across Iowa to the Mississippi River, then traveled north and stayed in Waterloo.

“We’re heading down to the Ozarks this summer,” Woosley said. “We’ll stay at an Airbnb. That always works out pretty well.”

Passion for motorcycles is a Woosley family pastime.

“My daughter, she got her license a week ago. She’s riding now too,” Woosley said.