Hi there!

Welcome to our blog! We hope you enjoy your stay and come back often.

We are Steph and Shal. Prior to meeting in August 2013, we were each exploring the idea of a major motorcycle adventure but did not yet have a specific plan in motion. We fell in love and immediately started talking about how such a trip could take form and propel us into the life we envisioned.

In June 2014 we left Seattle on our BMW F650 GSs and travelled 14,000 miles over the following five months. That winter we house and dog sat in Maine. In early May we got back on the bikes and rode four Backcountry Discovery Routes through Arizona, Colorado, Idaho and Washington. Shal went on to ride the New Mexico BDR for the filming expedition. No one – man nor woman has ever ridden that many BDRs in one season! At least not as of this writing. Our entire journey spanned 15 months and took us over 27,000 miles!

We started this blog about halfway through that big adventure. The trip came and went but we are committed to continuing living the spirit of exploration and adventure in our daily back-to-normal life.  Here’s a brief excerpt…Our bikes are the sort that can take us off-road, away from the crowds into spectacular scenery. They can also take us comfortably on the freeways when we must. We travel with everything we need – camping and cooking gear, food, tools, clothes and toiletries, all-weather gear, and our laptops. We love this adventure we’re on and are super grateful! 90% of the time we get along great and are on the same page. Sometimes we’re tired of roughing it. Sometimes we’re scared. Sometimes we argue. Often we miss our families and friends. However, the great majority of the time we are happily in our element discovering more of our country, the human spirit, ourselves, and each other.

Now here’s a little about us individually…

Shal, The Badlands, SD

Shal (48) grew up exploring the outdoors in Alaska. She backpacked and rode snow-machines, worked as a personal trainer, and began a successful 16-year career at Costco.  In 2011 Shal had a horrible accident on her motorcycle and has been rehabilitating her body ever since. This incident left her with the very real knowledge that life is short and can be taken away in a flash – she made some big changes and committed to living her life to its fullest. Read more about Shal’s Story.

Steph (52) grew up in Massachusetts, got married at 21 right out of college, worked a few corporate jobs, coached high school lacrosse, taught at an all-girls middle school, then tried real hard to reclaim her youth at Burning Man four years in a row…and succeeded. Her most joyful focus was raising her two daughters who are now in their 20s. Steph leans into adventure – sometimes too quickly – has traveled to over 35 countries, and finds herself participating in many exciting activities like bungee jumping, paragliding, skydiving, and now adventure motorcycle riding. Perhaps this latest adventure is the culmination of a mid-life crisis. But maybe not. Read more about Steph’s Story.

Stephairplanedenali
Steph, Denali, AK

We invite you to Follow our blog, join us on Facebook, even write to us! We LOVE feeling connected with you all!

With attitudes of gratitude, Steph and Shal

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5 comments

  1. Looking over your Alaska route – thanks for mapping that. My husband and I want to ride our motorcycles from here in the Portland area to Alaska and back, and I was convinced there was only one way to do that. Thanks so much for sharing your adventures! Sorry you aren’t/didn’t come through this area – we would have LOVED to have hosted you! (we have a great guest room!)

    1. Thanks for your note Jayne! We loved taking the Cassiar Highway up to Alaska. We did a combo ferry and ride on the way south…we took the ferry from Haines to Prince Rupert. It was fun to break up the ride that way and it was beautiful. We slept on the deck. And maybe one day we’ll be through Portland and take you up on your offer. 🙂
      All the best, and thanks for following! Steph and Shal

  2. Just watched your YouTube videos on WABDR. You two are awesome! I have lived around the world and mostly in Wisconsin for the last 35 years. But I am from Oroville, WA and that is still home. Section 6 of the WABDR was just my normal Sunday drive! I recently got to take my wife for her first off road trip ever on the route from the border to Conconully. A few sections she was breathless, but when we came across a black bear near Toats Coulee she was hooked! Going up Chopaka from Loomis she was speechless. But for me it was home. Your videos brought it all back to us. Thank you! I LOVE Washington state. P.S. I will be in Roslyn in August 2017 to officiate at my sister’s wedding!!!

    1. Hi Marty,
      Thanks so much for your kind comments and support! It means a lot to us.

      I have to say that the northern sections of the WABDR are some of my favorite of all the BDRs. Love your part of the state. And so cool that your wife is living to ride and explore too!
      Let us know when you’ll be in Roslyn and if we’re in town perhaps we grab a cup of coffee at Red Bird.

      Take care and thank you for following us!
      A
      Steph

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