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California Dreamin’

There is no doubt that winter is here. Regardless of where you live in Canada, one look out the window is the only encouragement required to stay indoors and focus on memories of your favourite warm weather riding destination.

As the result of a perfectly-timed invitation from Harley-Davidson Canada, I was fortunate enough to spend a couple of days riding around Southern California in January. In addition to a brief respite from the inclement temperatures at home, this was an opportunity to experience the brand’s complete Softail lineup while enjoying the favourable weather that makes California one of my all-time favourite locations.

A full report on the Softail lineup, and whether or not Harley-Davidson has what it takes to win over a dedicated sport bike enthusiast like myself, will appear in an upcoming issue of Inside Motorcycles. In the meantime, with frigid temperatures in the west and Ontario under siege by freezing rain and snow, it seemed like a perfect time to share some warm weather California images taken by the amazing Benedict Campbell. Hopefully these will assist in channelling memories of your own riding adventures.

Please enjoy and stay warm.


Cruising through Marina Del Rey on the Harley-Davidson Sport Glide.

Welcome to LA traffic. 

Welcome to LA traffic.


 Harley-Davidson Street Bob. 


 Harley-Davidson Breakout 114.


 Harley-Davidson Fat Bob with its impossible to miss front end.


 Laid back cruising on the Harley-Davidson Deluxe.


 Cutting through traffic on the all-new Harley-Davidson FXDR 114.


 The FXDR 114 strikes a pose.


 Ready to ride. Harley Davidson's Deluxe, Sport Glide, Breakout and Fat Bob.


Taking in the sights along the Pacific Coast Highway.


Sunsets are so much better when your riding a motorcycle. 


 Until next time California... 


Tuesday, 12 February 2019 17:35 Published in Feature Stories

2018 KTM 1290 Super Adventure S - Initial Impression

A visit to KTM’s North American headquarters in sunny Southern California last week provided a break from Canada’s persistent winter weather and the perfect opportunity to test the brand’s latest adventure bike offering: the 1290 Super Adventure S, which is making its inaugural appearance in Canada as a 2018 model. You will be able to find Inside Motorcycles’ complete in-depth review of the KTM 1290 Super Adventure S in an upcoming issue, but we couldn’t wait to share our initial thoughts on this exciting motorcycle. 

Saturday, 07 April 2018 17:59 Published in Industry News

FIRST RIDE: 2017 HONDA REBEL 300 AND REBEL 500 (with photos!)

For the international launch of its fresh, youthful 2017 Rebel 300 and 500 models, Honda chose the oceanfront neighbourhood of Venice Beach, California. The vibrant location, what with its trendy restaurants, cafés and free-spirited community, served as the perfect backdrop for the exciting new Rebel series.

Tuesday, 04 April 2017 17:06 Published in Feature Stories


The 2017 G310R is BMW's first recent foray into the small-displacement market. The explosion of growth in this category, from new riders in North America to urban commuters in Asia, motivated BMW to join the party and build a bike that’s small, low in power, and – BMW snobs, look away – very affordable.

Friday, 16 December 2016 15:56 Published in News

Leod Escapes invites riders to "Choose the Dream" and win a trip!

A motorcycle tour with track time on a famous MotoGP circuit sounds like a crazy dream, but Leod Escapes makes it happen. For track riders, an 8 to 10 day sport touring trip that also includes track time at courses like Sachsenring, Phillip Island, Laguna Seca Mugello or Misano is the ultimate vacation. But where to next? Leod Escapes wants you to vote at Thailand and Chang Circuit, Czech Republic and Brno, Spanish Pyrenees and Aragón or Portugal and Portimao - it's up to you. Choose wisely because those who vote for the winner are entered to win a free slot on the tour.

Just watch the video and it will all make sense.

Covering those Ws
WHO - Leod Escapes runs international tours with track time on famous circuits. They are based in San Francisco, California.
WHAT - Leod Escapes "Track & Tour" vacations are 8 to 10 day trips meant for track riders. This includes 4 to 6 days of sport touring on local roads on rented sport touring bikes and then one or two days of track time on a famous circuit on proper sport bikes.  Leod Escapes is giving riders the chance to vote for what the next "Track & Tour" vacation will be. Riders vote online at for one of four choices. Those who voted for the winning destination are entered to win a free slot on the tour.
WHERE - Choices are Thailand & Chang Circuit, Portugal & Portimao, Czech Republic & Brno and Spain & Aragón.
WHEN - Poll runs now until February 13th 2017, Winner will be chosen February 14th (Finally a good Valentines Day for someone)

Thursday, 10 November 2016 12:17 Published in Industry News

Leod Escapes presents: 9-day California Curves to Laguna Seca Tour, with California Superbike School!

Leod Escapes has finally made the ultimate California tour for serious curve hunters and track day junkies. All the best twisties and the best on-track instruction at Laguna Seca. Every touring bike is equipped with a GPS loaded with the custom routes, so you can ride the pace you want. You'll experience names you know like Golden Gate Bridge, High Sierra, Pacific Coast Highway 1, and California Redwoods, but you'll fall in love with the hidden routes, like Sonora Pass, Highway 36, Skyline and Monitor. Finish it off with two days of superb track instruction at Laguna Seca with California Superbike School. Three star accommodations every night. Wide array of adventure touring and sport touring machines available. Track prepped BMW S1000RR awaits you at Laguna Seca.

What is this tour like?

Enjoy vast and varied country, empty curvy roads and lots of fresh pavement. Northern California has the best sport touring in the west. Ride the great curvy routes with local expertise to guide you, but no large group to slow you down. The preloaded GPS routes mean you can ride with a group or ride your own pace. See the “City by the Bay”, the high Yosemite peaks, the wild north, the deep redwood forests, and the best of Pacific Coast Highway One. The routes average 230 curvy miles a day with plenty of time to stop to experience the essence of the regions.  The 2 days of track instruction on a BMW S1000RR will expand your skills. Whether it is your first track day or you’re an experienced racer, nothing accelerates your abilities like two days of focused instruction from California Superbike School. With over a 1000 miles of curves and two days of track instruction, you will come home a smoother, faster and safer rider.

When should riders reserve their spot?
Leod encourages riders to book this tour within the first 3 months of 2016, for two reasons.
1. The more exotic bikes go to the early bookers... for the same price. Book early and you can ride the Ducati Hyperstrada for same price as the BMW F800GS. Same goes for couples, those who book early can get the Multistrada for same price as a BMW R1200GS
2. California Superbike School's 2 day camp at Laguna Seca is very popular and sells out quickly

When? What does it cost & what's included?
•    Tour 2016 September Dates 8th to 16th
•    Tour 2016 October Dates 3rd to 11th
•    Prices start at $5600
•    9 Nights at 3 Star Accommodations
•    6 Days sport touring on the best curvy roads in the USA - San Francisco, Yosemite, Redwood Forests, Sierra Mountain Passes, Highway 1 and 36
•    Rental touring bike with luggage for single rider, book early to get the bike you want (F800GT, F800R, Hyperstrada, Monster 821, F800GS, F700GS)
•    Rental touring bike with luggage for couple or upgrade, book early to get the bike you want (R1200GS, S1000XR, R1200RS, R1200RT, Multistrada)
•    GPS loaded with routes, and way points
•    Route guide and quality map
•    Option to ride on your own or with a small group
•    Transport to and from airport and Laguna Seca
•    2 Days intense track instruction at Laguna Seca with California Superbike School
•    Seven Sessions of Track Time scheduled on Laguna Seca each day, weather permitting
•    Track prepped BMW S1000RR with Dunlop Q3 tires
•    Only 2 students per coach for maximum feedback and progress
•    Special “Over-Your-Shoulder” video equipped bikes to review with your coach
•    Quality Track Gear Provided - AGV Sport Leathers, Alpine Star Boots & Gloves and Schuberth Helmets
•    Expand your skills on specially modified bikes to boost your abilities safely, Braking Bike, Lean Machine, Slide Machine

Who would enjoy this vacation?
Are you an intermediate to advanced rider who relishes the idea of 1000s of curves across varied vistas? Have you always wanted to ride the corkscrew? Never ridden on a race track? No problem, the extensive coaching at California Superbike School is the best way to discover track riding. If you are an amateur racer who lives at the track this tour will send you home with a fresh competitive edge. If you are a passenger who loves great scenery and roller coaster rides then your going to love it. For CSS graduates, here's your chance to take a thrilling west coast vacation and reconnect with the CSS team at a track you've always wanted to ride. Learn more -->

Every bike has a GPS and the routes
The tour for people who would never take a "tour". All the local expertise is delivered to you in routes built into the GPS on your rental bike, along with an extensive "Road Book" and a very detailed map. Ride with your buddies. Make a new friend who's about the same pace and be their wingman. Or just ride the great routes in relaxing solitude. Your road book tells you the tasty food spots, the needed gas stops and restaurants that are a walk away from your hotel.

The best sport touring in the USA
We ride all over the world but call Northern California home for a reason. In 5 days you'll ride curvy roads through 6 different ecosystems. High mountain passes over 9000 feet, winding river runs, rolling hill country, ridge line roads through the redwoods and this tour puts you on the best stretch of Pacific Coast Highway 1. Yes this tour also routes you on the "Serpent to the Sea", California Highway 36 with 1811 curves over 140 miles.

A few words from Cat MacLeod on what makes this tour special
"We've finally got one. A great track and tour vacation on our home turf of Northern California. Ask anyone in Europe or on the East Coast of the United States, what track they want to ride and the answer is always "Laguna Seca".What many don't know, is that Northern California offers the best sport touring experience in the USA. Now we can deliver our local expertise to all our track riding brethren. The California Superbike School 2 Day Camp is not just a track day. This is intense instruction, on track prepped S1000RR, from the best in the business. This makes the tour a perfect package for an accomplished sport touring rider who wants to try track riding. The one on one instruction also makes it a great place for amateur racers to really up their skills quickly. It's tough to bring a USA tour with same sex appeal and incredible riding as an Italy & Mugello tour or an Alps & Sachsenring tour. This mix of Curves, Coast and Corkscrew can compete with anything we offer overseas.

California: the best curves?
We've blown away many foreign visitors. Usually it's around day 3 were they just look at us dazed  from all the fun they've been having and say "I just didn't know California was like this!"There are two mountain ranges, redwood forests and long coast lines. Have a look at the video of the touring portion.

Tuesday, 05 January 2016 09:56 Published in Products

Online review: 2015 BMW R1200R (exclusive)

@BMWMotorradCA • @BMWMotorradUSA • Two days in the canyons outside of Los Angeles proved the perfect test bed for the revised 2015 BMW R1200R.

Sunday, 24 May 2015 23:01 Published in Feature Stories


Ride along as we test the 2015 Ducati Scrambler!

Friday, 10 April 2015 13:07 Published in Multimedia

Tested: 2015 Kawasaki Vulcan S (with video)

Designed with the introductory rider in mind, the 2015 Kawasaki Vulcan S puts comfort, fit and confidence at the forefront of the riding experience. With a wonderful price point of $7,999 in Canada (including standard ABS!) and a new feature called Ergo-Fit, the Vulcan S is poised to stake a serious claim in the middleweight cruiser market.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 16:38 Published in Feature Stories