Yoda Ralph Scout, Father Serra, California mission Ride and eBIKE Adventure Part I

Not long ago in the mail I received an envelope addressed to Yoda Scout Ralph containing two hundred business cards; neatly printed on the back of one card was handwritten instructions. Good morning or evening, Yoda Scout Ralph.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to ride an ebike to all 21 California missions, scouting and collecting information about the Spanish Empire during the period of the Spanish colonization of the Americas. You will write daily progress reports on your ebikes success or challenges.

Ebikes and emotorcycles are in our future, the sooner we learn about their capabilities, the sooner we can add them to our Gpskevin ride calendar.

What? This message will self-destruct in 5 seconds. I counted and waited and waited. Still no self destruction so, I got on our secure line and called Gpskevin. He explained to me that Yoda Jane ran out earlier of self-destruct business cards. Must be a supply line shortage thing.

Back in 1769 Father Serra came up through Baja Mexico, with a party of thirty men; all while moving 200 head of cattle, 163 mules and some horses. His mission was to build a staircase of missions. For food they carried dried meat, grain, flour, cornmeal, and biscuits. You should plan on a healthier diet.

Today not everyone knows about the beautiful California missions still standing or about the long distance capabilities of an ebike. Hopefully, you will help change all that Yoda Scout!

Who is this Junipero Serra? Serra was the one ultimately responsible for establishing the 21 California mission system because not unlike what is happening today in the Ukraine the Russians were starting to make a move on our future heritage; Northern California.

The chain of events began when King Charles II of Spain ordered José de Gálvez, the Governor in New Spain, to send people to start two colonies in Alta California.

The settlements were to be near the harbors of San Diego and Monterey. The Spanish government wanted to make it known to any third rate country that Spain owned all of California!

What about the other ride Yodas I asked? Are any of them joining me? Ride Yodas” in the gpsKevin sense of the word are expert riding friends that help facilitate Gpskevin’s motorcycle rides. This means that they help riders who sign up to understand the ride itself and ensure that they are prepared for the motorcycle adventure of a lifetime, in which they are about to partake.

Are any of them coming with me? Negative Yoda Scout Ralph. Non of them cross train like you do on mountain bikes. They would only be holding you back. And there’s one other thing.

You need to ride a “throw away bike” to make it more challenging. Feel free to add your own emotor to it. Your ride distance should be at least 800 miles. I know that there’s some magic between the thrill of riding and discovery so I leave it up to your imagination.”

Remember, it’s all about the ride and discovering yourself. You will know the feeling, when you start out riding each day and say: This is so cool!” Gpskevin’s words, not mine.

You can either start in San Diego and head north or head north and ride north to south without crossing our northern or southern border.

Normally, Yoda Jane would mail you a ride packet and superchip for your Garmin. Due to recent world unforeseen circumstances from a deadly pandemic to world-shifting events such as climate change and supply chain shortages and rising gas prices you are on your own. …….and like always the Secretary will disavow any knowledge of your actions should you fail in your attempt. Good luck, Yoda Scout Ralph.

My mind is now calmer thanks to this new ride mission. Knowing that every bicycle has a story to tell I think my 37 year old Schwinn Prelude is up for the challenge. It also occurred to me that lots of people out there own bicycles but lack the motivation to start riding again.

Maybe a story or two could inspire a few people to visit their bikes now taking up space in their garages or back yards. We could all use an adventure or two in our lives and your old bike could certainly use a future.

My Schwinn Prelude road bike started out in the mid 80’s at a cost of $400. Allot of money back then, unless you considered yourself an avid rider, like I thought I was, and needed all the latest and greatest in bicycle engineering from Columbus, Ohio to stay competitive.

My work life skillset had nothing to do with things electrical or mechanical in nature but, I was easily able to electrify my bike because they now sell kits to do so.

Originally I planned on riding this throw away full suspension mountain bike.

Mid drive motor on a full suspension mountain bike

But, as soon as I tasted the raw power of an ebike I quickly left the pavement and started tearing up the local trails. That didn’t last long. I broke the battery rack twice.

On my second attempt I changed the rack design without much success. I even tried staying on the pavement. I won’t now go into the weeds about the different types of electric motors available or how much fun it was to be a part of building an ebike. I’ll save that for another part in this story.

Here’s what I NOW plan on riding on my 800 mile California missions ride. IF YOU WANT TO ALSO JOIN ME THERES ALSO STILL TIME.

Trawlercat 7/1/2022