I enjoyed a nice quiet ride up to Bennington, Vermont for the 8th annual Bennington Triumph Bash. I managed to avoid both traffic and trucks the entire way from Manhattan by taking the Taconic Parkway and routes 22 and 7.
I was on the early side as usual and met up with Bash organizer Alan as well as several of the regulars I have met over the years. After dropping some gear in the hotel, we headed off for their traditional visit to the Bennington war monument. There were one or two other groups visiting, families on vacation. We then rode to the outskirts of town and had a pub lunch.
Back in Bennington around 3, other New York City riders started to drift in to the hotel parking lot as well as any that were in town by this point for the traditional Friday meet. I had heard that about 100 were expected for the weekend, and the Saturday dinner had been capped at 75.
We did some more riding around after that, and then met at a restaurant in town with six or eight others for a late bite to eat. Saturday morning, people split off to go on their different rides. Chris on a Tiger 1050 and I decided to try a mix of the traditional highways, route 7 and 100, as well as off roading in Green Mountain State Park. Me following Chris on the pavement
A few miles after this photo was taken I had a crash on a bridge with some awkwardly-exposed railroad ties:
As I rode in the left dirt channel, the bike naturally went into a groove and was brought up against the exposed perpendicular wooden wall. I had only just the week prior changed from my TKC-80 set of tires that were worn down in back but not too much in front to my old Tiger-reliable Pirelli Scorpion Trail. Had I left on the old shoes, it probably would have grabbed and ridden me up onto the railroad tie. As it was, the bike slammed me left into the guardrail which hit my lower rib cage hard, pitched me over the left side of the bike so my right shoulder hit the street sign, & deposited me under the guard rail where the gravel is very disturbed and the skid marks end. Free of me, the bike bounced off of the guardrail, righted itself, and decided it WAS a nice day for a ride after all. It continued to cross the bridge and rode smoothly down the far-side apron before coming to a rest on its right side at the road’s edge. You can see it righted where it stopped.
As is my luck with Tigers, the right passenger peg was bent and the insurance company is replacing the frame. I managed to start it and ride it 5 more miles out of the dirt, then 10 more miles back to the hotel, where 4 hours later my wife and her friend collected me for the rest of the weekend. I am on the sidelines this summer awaiting my frame replacement. This is the second Triumph Tiger 800 frame I have sent to the ever-after in a mere 7 months.