looks better from a motorcycle -- especially a Harley
By Kate Bradshaw
March 8, 2006 | Looking at today's incredible motorcycle
selection it's hard to believe that the motorcycle began
as a wooden bike with an engine attached. But it's true
-- the first gas-engine motorcycle was invented in 1885
by German man, Gottleib Daimier, and that is exactly
what it was: an engine attached to a wooden bike.
Motorcycles were pretty popular during the 1900s.
It wasn't until 1970 that the motorcycle craze died
down. The baby boomers have been left with the blame
because during the baby boomers period everyone had
been purchasing a motorcycle. In the 1970s these baby
boomers had gotten older and were starting families
and getting jobs that took most of their time. So the
motorcycle just plain lost its appeal.
Good motorcycles are made by many different companies,
but Harley Davidson surprised everyone in 1981 when
they started work on a new engine. It used to be that
only a mechanic could own a Harley, but with the new
reliable engine anyone could ride. Today Harley-Davidson
is at the top of the sales in the United States.
So how are things at the Saddleback Harley Davidson
in Logan? "Things are great," says Ashli Belnap, motor
clothes specialist. For being the smallest store in
their district she says the sales are great. Despite
the cold winter months they are staying busy. She says
they have lots of winter service specials, and they
continue to have monthly events. Perfectly named for
those tired of the winter is the March 25th rally called
the anti-winter rally.
According to Belnap most of their customers are males
anywhere from 18 to 60. Women are represented mostly
by riders between 30 and 50 years old. Belnap also said
that Logan is one of the most popular bike riding places
in the summer, thanks to the canyon and its smooth winding
road and beautiful green forest.
Richard Rawlinson is a long time rider; today he chooses
to ride the Harley Davidson Electra Glide Standard a
smooth ride for him and his wife. He rides mostly in
small groups through Utah and Idaho. He also enjoys
a ride through Logan Canyon, but says that his favorite
place to ride is through the west side of Mendon up
to Newton and over to Dayton to the small Viking Leather
shop. Rawlinson has not yet been in an accident he says,
"Drive defensively, give yourself a lot of room, and
look ahead down the road."
In 2004 in Utah alone there was a total of 938 motorcycle
crashes, 877 were injured and 31 of those crashes were
fatalities. Riders age 20 to 24 were involved in the
So is putting your bike up for the winter safety precaution?
Or is the threat of the nasty cold just too much for
the average rider? If you've been around Utah State
University this winter you would have noticed many brave
or desperate souls still riding their bikes to and from
school. Joey Bradshaw and Chris Wilder are just two
local residents who kept the motor running through the
Joey says, "You freeze, your glasses fog up, and you
have about a hundred layers of clothes on, but after
a good ride you feel like you've scratched that itch
that you just couldn't reach before."
Bradshaw wears a helmet through the winter to keep
him warm but agrees that the no helmet law is nice in
the summer especially for short rides down to the local
Bruce Torson is another local resident who rides through
the cold winter months. He doesn't ride when there is
snow, but other than that he doesn't use the car if
the chance to ride the bike is available. Torson chooses
to ride mostly alone, with the arrival of a new baby
his wife hasn't been able to ride with him as often.
Torson like many others I suppose got into a motorcycle
because of the price of gas, and says that everyone
should get one. "It feels cool," he says. "It brings
a unique sense of freedom."
Torson hasn't been to any motorcycle events yet. But
I am sure that he and many other local rides will be
among the group at the HOG (Harley Owners Group) rally
this summer as it will be held here in Logan on Labor
We've come along way from the wooden bicycle with
an engine attached. But the safety tip still remains
today "Ride Safe." And for those that haven't yet ventured
into the wonderful world of motorcycling keep in mind
what Ashli Belnap has to say, "Some of them may look
pretty tough, but our customers are wonderful friendly
For more information on local rides and events visit