Ladies Weekend: Desert Run

The Harley’s slowly rolled up to the Joshua Tree Air B&B, past the cactuses, the hoarded trailer parks, confederate flags and broken down dive bars. Dressed in head to toe leather, chaps, and full blacked-out face helmets, 15 ladies from all over California reunited in motorcycle heaven. This tight-knit group involves some long-time riders who have been doing this type of thing for years and some are new to the crew, like me, who flew into LA the night before from Vancouver, BC.

Like an old-time Sonny Barger movie this group rides tight, reckless but totally in control, and drinks beer and does donuts at their destination. I have never been so quickly accepted into a crew as rad as this one. Bikes that out weigh their rider 4 fold, these women look like they were born on their machines and they’re flying at 80 miles an hour at an arms length away from my hip.

Crew @ Dan Collins Joshua Tree abode. 

Crew @ Dan Collins Joshua Tree abode. 

Them Road Apples Becky Goebel
Adri Law, Tamara Raye, Imogene Lehtonen, and Brooke Worrel

Adri Law, Tamara Raye, Imogene Lehtonen, and Brooke Worrel

This crew is often lead by 27 year old Lanakila MacNaughton who is my partner in curating the popular women’s-only camp trip in the Pacific North West, The Dream Roll. Riding beside her on her 1200cc Sportster chopper is a good feeling. We are ageless and free from everything when we are shredding together. There are never words spoken about those feels on the road, it’s more just experienced in the moment and tomorrow we go back to our week day jobs.

Leather mama Brooke Worrel

Leather mama Brooke Worrel

Women's Moto Exhibit Photo of Becky Goebel

Women's Moto Exhibit Photo of Becky Goebel

These ladies aren’t just going back to their boring desk jobs though, in this crew we’ve got an engineer at Disney, a social media strategist for one of the largest platforms in California, the head photographer for the Women’s Moto Exhibit, a jewelry maker who makes rings for rock stars, a writer for one of America’s biggest culture magazines as well as a leather-goods maker who makes clothing for the movies and most of our crew. There are double master degree holders; cross-country road trippers and well traversed ladies who have learnt their lessons on the roads far away from home. There’s a lot to talk about in the 3-bedroom house in the desert and the beers are flowing.

Them Road Apples Becky Goebel
Pit stop

Pit stop

We rode into Joshua Tree National Park and did burnouts around a cactus after rolling around in the sand. We shot photos of each other ripping while riding hand-less along the winding, cracked single lane roads. We cruised out to the church where Kill Bill was filmed and ran around the abandoned movie sets. Middle fingers are flying everywhere and the chase vehicle carries our Pomeranian Gus and a flat of Coors. The sun sets over the desert and I am totally in my element, not one thought in my mind of my early morning flight back to Canada in the morning. Tomorrow I’ll be responding to e-mails and helping out with a snowboard tradeshow.

Becky Goebel Lanakila MacNaughton
Becky Goebel Them Road Apples
Zach Iddings Photo

Zach Iddings Photo

Lanakila Machnaughton Becky Goebel Photo actuallyitsaxel
Murray Ash Photo

Murray Ash Photo

You may see us roar past you or see us on social media and think, ‘oh that looks like a cool group of ladies’ or ‘cool, those girls can ride bikes’ but there’s lots more to the women’s motorcycle community than just tassels and messy wind-blown hair. I have watched these women help complete strangers, pick a fellow riders bike up off the pavement and share essential items far away from any convinces without thinking twice. Egos are low key and everyone supports each other because it’s hard being the underdog in such a male-influenced and dominated culture.

Katie Sue, good vibes all night long @totalrecall

Katie Sue, good vibes all night long @totalrecall

Nina Kaplan

Nina Kaplan

These years it is easier than ever to be a woman and be a badass. If you’ve ever wanted to do something you didn’t think you could or didn’t think you could fit into, this culture shows a perfect example of you being totally wrong. You don’t have to choose to be this or that. You can choose have multiple labels and these are the days to work hard, party hard and roam free.

xo Becky

On The Spot: Brittany Wood

I met Brittany online long before I ever met her in person. She's one of those people who you'll see support her buddies in the most positive and selfless way. When I met her in real life times, she was no different. Brittany is a totally successful, down to earth and badass little lady... Plus, she's got a dog named Pizza. I'm glad to now be able to call her my friend. A couple weekends ago we spent a few days in the desert riding around in the sunshine where I asked her the Road Apples : On The Spot questions and took this chill ass photo of her badass-ness 

A/S/L: 26/Female/Los Angeles 

The best trip you’ve ever been on?: Hm, there’s so many trips I want to do, but so far my favorite trip has been Borrego, California. That place is so magical , and so alien to me. It’s out in the middle of nowhere, with these monstrous sculptures, and abandoned hotels. It looks like a post-appocolyptic Palm Springs.

Tell us something that’s on your bucket list.

I’ve only really ridden around California, so it’s been a huge goal of mine to venture past my homeland’s boarders, and do some exploring across the US. BUT, with the way it’s looking, I’ll be doing some roaming through Europe with the ladies of VCMC, before that US trip happens.

If we came over to your house for dinner, what would you make us?

PFT! What WOULDN’T I make!? Just kidding…I’m a terrible cook. Maybe grilled vegetables, because that’s all I can make/eat. Hope that’s cool with you?

Favourite Instagram page you follow?

Lately I’ve been pretty obsessed with @PumpkinTheRaccoon, because c’mon…raccoons. I also love following @tamararaye, @mouthfulofjoy, and @anyavioleteuniverse. They’re three incredibly rad, talented women who are literally kicking ass, and are people I really look up to in the moto scene. I’ve always wanted to try my luck on the track, and I feel rather envious of their skill, and confidence doing so

Do you ride with any women? : 

Yup, but I wouldn’t call us an “MC." I do have a pretty tight knit crew of ladies I can regularly text at 6am, and be like “Get your hungover ass out of bed, and let’s ride,” but I’m always up for riding with different people - men and women. I feel like I’m a rather social person, so I love the fact that riding has opened the doors to so many friendships with women who share my passion. 

What’s your bike(s)?:

It’s a rusted up ‘93 HD Sportster XL1200

On the Spot: Murray Ash

"I met Murray when I used to work at The Shop Vancouver. He was talking about doing a trip from Vancouver, BC -> California -> Mexico -> New York then ship his Triumph across the pond and go home to London.. I thought he was nuts. Murray ended up riding down to California and Mexico where he made friends with a ton of other riders and started shooting photos of some serious babes. I started seeing his name everywhere. He got hooked up with some cool gigs and stayed there for quite a long period of time. He is still planning on doing his dream trip, but for now, he's back in Vancouver continuing to shoot photos and work his dream job. You'll be seeing more of this guy soon."

ASL: 30/M/Vancouver, LA, London

The best trip you’ve ever been on?: The best trip I've ever been on was a mushroom trip in Bali. It involved a star wars scene on the beach and sleeping in a cupboard. Most of that was probably imagined but really, who's to say?

Tell us something that’s on your bucket list. To finish writing my book. Ive been traveling the world for over ten years now and its about time I combined my photography (@murrayashdotcom) and my writing (@aestival_knievel) into something a little more tactile than Instagram.

Murray Ash Photo

Murray Ash Photo

Murray Ash Photo

Murray Ash Photo

If we came over to your house for dinner, what would you make us?: What would I make you? I would make you extremely hungry by waiting ages to feed you, knowing that whatever I cooked after that would taste incredible. It would be veggie though, animals are for laughing at on youtube not for eating.

Murray Ash Photo

Murray Ash Photo

Favourite Instagram page you follow? Henrik Purienne. Pure hedonism.

Do you ride with any women? I love women who ride but there aren't enough of you guys out there! I spent a couple of days riding and shooting Amanda (@rad_rau) and Jacinta (@moto_doll) this summer and we had a blast. 

Murray Ash Photo

Murray Ash Photo

What’s your bike? '09 Triumph Thruxton with custom bits and more tinkering and parts to come this winter. 

Murray is also a killer writer. Check out his ongoing work about his travels at www.aestivalknievel.com