Cross-Country Honeymoon on 1973 Hondas

What better way to celebrate a marriage than to ride two 1973 Hondas on a cross-country honeymoon?

| July/August 2012

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    Just off SR 91, along I-15 in California, just before the Arizona border.
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    The dinosaurs from Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure in Cabazon, Calif.
  • Honeymoon-4
    Gunfighters, burro poop and two old Hondas line the street in Oatman, Ariz.
  • Honeymoon-5
    Look ma, no baffles.
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    Old Route 66, better known as the Topock-Oatman Highway, outside Oatman, Ariz.
  • Honeymoon-7
    SR 170 outside Mesquite, Nev.
  • Honeymoon-6
    Paper cranes were a gift from Japanese tourists.
  • Honeymoon-8
    Not a canyon, but a collection of naturally formed hoodoos at Bryce Canyon, Utah.
  • Honeymoon-9
    US 191 near Flaming Gorge, Utah. Close to Wyoming and real beer.
  • Honeymoon-10
    Former state Senator Dave Zien’s “Million Mile” Harley.
  • Honeymoon-11
    From left to right, unlikely motorcycle saviors Ron and his friend and the author in Keystone, S.D.
  • Honeymoon-12
    Natural beauty in many forms.

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  • Honeymoon-2
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  • Honeymoon-5
  • Honeymoon-3
  • Honeymoon-7
  • Honeymoon-6
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  • Honeymoon-12

There aren’t many days in one’s life that combine terror and love in quite the same way your wedding day does.

The first test any marriage is put through is known as “wedding planning.” Having bluffed our way through these trials and joined our lives as one, my wife, Nicole, and I decide we’re going to take a cross-country honeymoon ride, me on my 1973 Honda CB750 and Nic on her 1973 Honda CB350G twin.

As one of the best wedding presents ever, her brother has our bikes shipped out to his home in Lake Arrowhead, Calif., so, “all we have to do is ride them home to Chicago.” Rather than traveling through the boring parts of this great land to see the exciting parts, we’ll start at the exciting parts. And if we break down early on, the scenery will be better.

In preparation, and with 12 hours to spare before the bikes get picked up for shipment, new tires are mounted on my 750. And I have 12 hours to see if my fork rebuild worked, whether I can fix a misfire and if I can Helicoil a header mount. The answers are Yes, No and No, but I fixed it with J-B Weld.



Nic’s 350 just needs gas. It’s a time machine — it still has the clear warning sticker on the gas tank. Assuming all goes well, she’ll be the hero of the trip. Thousands of marginally talented riders have ridden cross-country on 750s. But doing it on a small twin will be a bit more challenging.

With bikes shipped, we arrive at LAX, and our first obstacle is our own stupidity. We brought nothing but black leather gear for a July trip through the desert. After a trip to Chaparral Motorsports, we’re outfitted in white textile clown suits. These jackets will mean the difference between possible and probable heatstroke.

bill
5/2/2013 1:40:38 PM

WELL, GREAT WAY TO START. AND PRETTY GOOD WRITING. GOOD LUCK ON THE BIGGEST ADVENTURE OF ALL: YOUR MARRAIGE


Jeff Brittain
7/27/2012 5:42:22 PM

I have a 73 honda cb 350 I have been putting off tinkering with, waiting for cooler air here in Alabama. Your story has given me new life. I will get the ol'350 going and ride!!!







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