I’m a boot guy. Some people like tennis shoes, some like loafers. Me, I like boots. I’ve been wearing boots as my shoe of choice since I was a little kid. I don’t know if it was because I lived on a small farm or if it was driven from spending all my time riding motorcycles. Nothing like a good pair of well worn boots to make you feel right at home.
I’ve owned several pairs of motorcycle boots over the years. I’ve tried a few brands, but there is one boot in particular that stands above the rest. Sometime back in the late 90s or early 2000s I bought a pair of BMW Kilimanjaro boots. They looked more like motocross boots than street boots, and maybe that was part of the appeal. This was before everyone started using the term “Adventure bikes.” Those boots were the most comfortable riding shoes I ever owned. I wore them until just about a year or two ago, when I discovered I had worn the toe completely out. It was a sad day indeed.
I began searching for a replacement and ended up picking up a couple different pairs. Neither one compared to my old worn out boots. Frankly, I didn’t much care for them at all, so when I go the chance I picked up a pair of boots that reminded me of my old friends. I read somewhere that at one time Forma made some of the BMW boots. I have no idea if they made my old Kilimanjaro or not, but I’ve got to say I love these new Adventure boots! They are all day comfortable…good thing, as that is how they will be worn. When I go on bike trips my riding boots go hiking on mountain trails, walking around quaint downtowns and take me out to dinner and drinks.
These new boots feel like home and they remind me of my aging Triumph Street Triple R. I decided a few days ago that it was finally time to let my 5 year old Street Triple go. I have owned the bike since new. It was actually a gift from my wife for my 50th birthday. I have loved that bike since the day I rode it home. I didn’t put all that many miles on it (pushing 15k right now) because I have owned other bikes at the same time, however, none of them ever stuck with me like the Triple.
It’s not just that it was a gift that makes me wax poetic about this machine; it just fits me. I love the sound of that three cylinder engine as it winds out. I love looking over the bars and realizing there is nothing between me and what lies ahead. I love the minimalist nature of the bike, the raw power, the ease with which it can be handled. I don’t even think about steering it; my body just knows how it will respond and, together, we navigate the asphalt serpent.
This bike has taken me many places, figuratively and literally. It has spent many weeks in Asheville, running from one end of the Blue Ridge Parkway to the other. It’s been all over Virginia, West Virginia and the Midwest. Together we have created many memories.
So, I tried to put it up for sale, just like I’ve threatened to do many times before. I went as far as to create an ad. As I wrote out the post I found myself getting a bit teary-eyed and realized I couldn’t let this bike go to just anyone. I have loved this machine and someday, its new owner must love it the way I did. But for today, the Street Triple stays in the garage, at home where it belongs…just like those old worn out boots.