So where was I…
I had decided from Chickfest that I would return home on my friend’s trailer. My bike needed an oil change so badly after all my riding around that I was beginning to feel guilty. I had purchased oil to do the change, but I didn’t have a filter and probably couldn’t get one for a couple days. I didn’t feel like hanging out in Salida after everyone left, so it made sense to just trailer home and call an end to my summer adventuring.
Then a guy came up to me as I was packing up…”Hey, you have a DRZ, would you like this oil filter?” Apparently someone was trying to give it away around the campfire the previous night and it went unclaimed! What luck is that huh? He didn’t even know I needed one and it just fell into my lap. It was too perfect to ignore.
I declared to my friends that I would not be heading back at all.
“Where are you going?”
“Don’t know yet!”
I loaded up my bike and set off from camp. I stopped at the main highway and sat there for a second debating which way to go. Then I made a right and just started riding…
Apparently all roads in Colorado lead to Denver, because that’s eventually where I ended up. Denver is also a massive city and I felt immediately overwhelmed and began to wonder what the heck I was doing.
After briefly contemplating a parking lot oil change, I had the bright idea to get onto the TentSpace List and locate a rider who might be kind enough to let me borrow their garage instead. I sent a message to MountainEagle and he got back to me right away. Not only did he have a garage I could use, but a place to crash as well! I headed right over.
The garage was open and full of dual sport bikes, I got off and introduced myself. “And what’s your real name?” “Umm it’s Mountain Eagle.” and then I felt a little silly. He helped me get my bike up on the lift and then I set about changing the oil. I like that he just let me do my oil change. I swear it’s nearly impossible for guys to just hang out and let a girl wrench. So what if I’m slow at it. 😛
He noticed my exhaust was flopping around and suggested we try to fix it (again. I have fixed this thing a million times now).
Here is Mountain holding my exhaust pipe.
We got it apart and it did indeed look ugly.
It’s hard to tell, but that thin blackened metal ring holds my pipe on and it’s in about four pieces.
Luckily Mountain is friends with another rider and talented machinist named Beemer Pat (well I think his name was actually just Pat…) who asked for pictures of the offending parts so he could come up with a solution and bring a replacement by after work the next day.
Since my bike was now in pieces, Mountain’s lovely wife let me borrow her Super Sherpa for running around the next day.
She also rescued cats and rehomed them and at the moment their house was full of kittens.
Mountain was remodeling a nearby house and let me camp out over there. It was really quite cozy.
The next day I took the Sherpa out on a quest for a map of the Western United States. Later on Pat stopped by with his replacement part.
I dare say his looks a bit sturdier!
Beemer Pat hard at work on the Zeb.
Mountain putting the exhaust back together while his steed looks jealous in the background.
I don’t think I can express how incredible it is to meet someone from the internet, have them invite you over, feed you, give you a place to stay, loan you a bike, spend hours repairing yours and wanting nothing in return except a promise to pay it forward to other riders some day.
I left Denver with a smile on my face and riding a much happier bike as we headed North…