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Atascadero 2010. Bud Ekins Memorial Tour, Day 3

May 9, 2010

IMG_3409Richard ran his 1913 Henderson 4 cylinder for the Saturday ride.  What a fun bike!  It has 250cc per cylinder, one speed, and the passenger sits in the front!  That long tubular fuel tank is quite distinctive, as are the footboard plate and the front mudguard.  Just a 3/4” Schebler H carb feeds all the cylinders, and the exhaust is a straight pipe without any muffler baffles.

Around 0:40 into this video you can see the guys with the big cameras filming the bikes take off.  As an unexpected surprise, there was a film crew and a photography crew present during the tour.  The film crew was the same folks that did some of those Biker Build Off shows on the Discovery Channel, and they wanted to get some footage of pre WWI bikes for a new show.  Like the photography crew, they were interested in documenting the old bikes as part of the Cannonball event this year.  So we all had cameras mounted on our handlebars, helmets, jackets, etc and did interviews day and night during our stay in Atascadero.  Stay tuned, if it makes it onto TV, I’ll post a link.  I hope that it is not as sensational as the build off shows, but that’s up to the directors, producers, etc.  I’m just the guy riding the bike down the road….




Richard and Kim.


Tiny little pushrods



Saturday’s ride took us out to Creston for coffee, then along the beautiful Highway 229 towards Santa Margarita.  This little road is a real gem, one lane wide, with almost zero traffic.  Twisties for several miles, then it is over all too quickly.  I didn’t take any video of the ride, but I found this and other videos on Youtube:

Since I was on the ‘13 Premier, I rode quite a bit slower than the guys in the movie:  about 25mph was plenty fast on a bike with no brakes.  The downhill section was particularly troubling while I used the ignition timing to slow the bike.  I’d love to go back on a bike with brakes someday!

Johnny Parker was riding his Indian.  10 or 20 years ago he bought it as a full on chopper, then removed the extended front end and built it up like this.  It was filmed for the Johnny Cash movie Walk the Line, but ended up on the cutting room floor.  This bike travels the wilds of Titus Canyon annually in October.  Check out Johnny’s Primer National events with the link in his name above.






Another cool bike; Chuck’s VL with WWII fighter plane paint:


Mike G’s 1917 Excelsior.


Mike’s bike and mine, one year apart…   His is a low mileage original, mine is a worn out example.IMG_3477

IMG_3483Saturday’s lunch was at the Pozo Saloon.   Since 1858, this watering hole has served up cervezas to the people passing through.  The specialty of the house is the Pozo Martini, a Mason jar of beer with two green olives floating in the suds.  They also serve beer by the gallon if you are so inclined.

Steve books the place for us each year, and they prepare a mean Tri-tip and potato salad out back.  Big and small bands play in the field behind the BBQ, everybody from Lynyrd Skynyrd to Dwight Yoakam to the Rev. Horton Heat and Snoop Dogg.

I can never get enough of these 150 year old road houses!  Closer to home, we enjoy the Alpine Inn which is the start/stop point for the Rigid Ride (Aug 8th this year!).

From their site:

Pozo Saloon was established in 1858 as part of a busy town nestled between the San Joaquin Valley and the Central Coast of California. Driving over Pozo Summit will take you across the rugged road that once connected San Luis Obispo County with the inland valley. At one time, Pozo boasted a hotel, two blacksmith shops, a general store, post office, numerous homes and ranches and its own school district. From Pozo, travelers could take Hi Mountain Road into Arroyo Grande, or continue on to Santa Margarita where the railroad would transport goods and passengers to the northern part of the state. The advent of the car, and the building off highways 58 and 46 heralded the end of Pozo as a stop for weary travelers. Today, only the Saloon and part of the Pozo Hotel are still standing. A proud part of San Luis Obispo County history, it is still a focal point for entertainment and celebrations.


Paul Merrick was running for re-election as both Sheriff and Coroner… IMG_3485

Lots of snakes around these parts.  I saw a few on the road…


After Pozo, we all headed back to where we came from, with promises to meet again this summer in Alturas, or the Primer Nationals, or maybe the Rigid Ride.  See you there?

3 Comments leave one →
  1. May 10, 2010 3:33 am

    Fantastic ride with your machines…
    I just realized that you’re registrated for the Cannonball with the Premier
    200miles by day at 25mph it’s a great challenge !!


  2. Richard McKenney permalink
    May 10, 2010 11:26 pm

    G’day Pete

    Oh! man! have I got old bike envy or what! What a magic tour, gorgeous stuff.

    Never see those old beauties in OZ.

    Hey Pete are you running a bronze bush in the big end of the Premier or did you squeeze some rollers in there for the Cannonball?

    Cheers Richard

  3. Pete Young permalink*
    May 11, 2010 9:22 am

    Hi Richard. Yes, it is fun to live in California sometimes…. But I know that there are a lot of good events in the UK and OZ too.

    The Premier does have a bronze bushing in the big end. I had to replace it about 5 years ago. There is a photo of the old and new bushes here:


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