Myself and ( hopefully ) three of my friends are coming up from New Zealand to ride from California up to Sturgis , It will be our first time as well!!! will have to meet up for a beer or 10!!
I have been going since 2000. Ride out from CT. Last year Victory did not have the luncheon at Spearfish but Rice Victory in Rapid City did. There is plenty to see and plenty to do and lots of good riding.
I suggest getting a place with a roof over your head in case a hail storm comes through.
Be prepared for huge crowds as it is the 70th anniversary in 2010. Yes the weather can erupt at any time out there so be prepared for anything. Staying home this year because of the anticipated crowds. Dont let the scenery distract you as you will be surrounded by alot of other bikes as that is not always a good thing. It is one of my most favorite places to ride so I always plan my trip to leave the area just as the rally gets going. Ride safe and enjoy!
Cheers wingman....The people are the reason i want to go !! never seen anything thing like it , there are only 4 million people in my whole country...so a HUGE crowd is 40000! I can go for a ride here on some of the beautiful backroads and not see anyone for a two hour ride. Will be a bit of a drag riding bunched up, but hey plenty of time to ride alone when i come home!
Anyone have any recomendations for accomodation? would like some place shelterd for the scooter.
As I said I stay in Hill City. Small town and friendly folks but it's 60 miles form Sturgis. Do a search see what pops up. In 2000 I checked a place with house, MX bikes and horses for 10k a week. O.O They gave me a number to another couple that I rented from for years and when they sold their house I rent from Wally that I met through those folks. Wally let's me park my bike under the carport with her sports car.
Last year, Jay, he owns the local coffee shop here, went to Sturgis with a friend. They flew to WY and rented a car, drove to Sturgis and rented HDs to ride. Last year a real bad hailstorm came through. The bikes did not get damaged but his rental car wasn't so lucky. He had to pay the $1k that insurance did not cover. ouch...
If you like the crowds you may want to stay around Sturgis. Some folks that went to Sturgis in 2000 did not have any reservations and ended up at the Buffalo Chip. Nice place but the only spots left were in front of the stage. No sleep all night. They ended up at a campsite in Hill City the rest of the week. Some of the home owners in Sturgis rent camping spots in their front yards. I am sure you will hear the bikes all day and night in places like that.
NZ, If you haven't already, you can get South Dakota (Sturgis)information by going to WWW.TRAVELSD.com and requesting their info., also be sure to request the motorcycle packet. It must be partially sponsered by Harley because I didn't see any pic's of Victorys in the info.
I plan to go also.
Yes, the hailstorms come in quick and hard. Both places I have rented over the years had carports to park under. One year the hail was larger than the quarters in my pocket. Can't imagine what damage they would do to the bike. Back in 2000 the Sturgis vendors were putting the sides down on their tents so we asked were they closing and they said no a storm was coming in. We were on the highway when it caught up to us but we made it under an overpass.
I have had Kara on the back riding through Custer State Park and the rain was coming down so hard it was bouncing back up off the asphalt about 6 inches. Over the years I have learned to listen to weather reports and keep an eye on the sky.
Just about every evening T-storms come through Hill City. Most of them you can see the lightening in the distance and only get rain. I love shooting the bull with strangers on a sidewalk bench under an overhang.