The clouds parted, it was Halloween, and over 200 old bikes showed up at the Bayview
Boat Club in San Francisco to enjoy the sound and smell of each other's bikes, have
an awkward ride through city streets, and freak out the citizens.
And while there's an element of dress-up in every vintage motorcycle ride, the fortuitous
confluence of SF's favorite holiday with Pete and Kim Young's '49-Mile Ride' made
for an especially delicious and much-anticipated event. With the help of the Yerba
Buena chapter of the AMCA, everything went smoothly, with only the usual run-ins
with (non-costumed) police and a few minor repairs along the route.
As the San Francisco Giants baseball team made it into the World Series, the city
has been 'orange and black' - perfect Halloween colors - for a few weeks now, so
it's difficult to parse the baseball fanatics from the revelers of All Hallow's Eve,
but since its San Fran and the sun is out, nobody really cares.
The usual fantastically varied selection of bikes showed up, with various sub-genres
(vintage, chopper, café) comingling and admiring the best of the breed.
For the first time since the 49 Mile Ride's inception, I wasn't able to attend (France
is just a bit far), so like the rest of the world, can only look on with pleasure
and remember the feel of the cool ocean air, the smell of two-stroke oil, the thrill
of filtering en masse through traffic, and the smiles of friends.
Many thanks for the photos!
Blaise Descollanges, Max Schaaf, Craig Howell, SF Vintage Cycle, Lori Vorhese, and