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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #1
This thread is here for forum members who have an interest in the GWRRA, or perhaps wishes to share their experiences with forum members about the GWRRA.

This is not a thread to promote the GWRRA. It is a thread to discuss the GWRRA.

Bashing the GWRRA because "they are money hungry and only for profit" posts will be removed. Flaming won't be tolerated. We know they are a private company and at the end of the year, they produce a profit.

Legitimate concerns regarding a recent experience both positive and negative with the intent of seeking a resolution or an understanding would be an acceptable post.

Sharing about the use of the Gold Book and how it enhanced the trip is encouraged.

Sharing about tips from the mechanics corner in the monthly magazine is encouraged.

If you want to mention the passing of a friend that you met at GWRRA 20 years ago and your feelings about that. Feel free. You will be heard here by the members here at Goldwing Facts.

For those visiting this thread for the first time, thank you for keeping an open mind. The GWRRA is not for everyone, but it could be for you.

Don't let "contempt prior to investigation" keep you from learning and enjoying the GWRRA.

LarryinSeattle
member # 338865
 

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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #2
My first experience was at a state wide meeting of the GWRRA. I was a member for a short few months and had not been to a chapter meeting. My first meeting was the state assembly in Chelais, WA, about a 100 miles from my home. I had recently purchased a 94 1500 Wing and I knew very little about the motorcycle I was riding.

On the way down to the assembly, my gas and temperature gauge ceased working. When I stopped to investigate it on the side of the freeway, I finally found the fuses. I check them with my meter and I thought I had checked them all. I did not fix the problem. I continued to the event. When I got there, I went to register and when one of the people asked me how my trip down was, I briefly explained to him my woes. He immediately called another member over, who took charge. He pulled the cover off of my fuses and found the blown one. Asked out loud if anyone had a 10 amp fuse that they could spare. In 10 minutes my motorcycle was fixed.

I went on a group ride to see Mount St. Helens with a chapter from Bremerton, WA. I camped with some members from the Everett chapter. I was fed and be befriended with camp fire stories.

First impressions means a lot. I have heard of people who have gone to an GWRRA event and "no body said anything to them." I get that. That has happened to me at many different groups of things. To those that say that, I have this suggestion: Stick your hand out. Someone will shake it. That is at most organized events.
 

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gwrra?

No offense LarryinSeattle, but wouldn't a thread about positive and negative experiences on a different forum be better addressed on that forum?

And quite frankly, the last two sentences in your first post, do appear to be promoting the organization.

Rayjoe
 

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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #4
No offense LarryinSeattle, but wouldn't a thread about positive and negative experiences on a different forum be better addressed on that forum?

And quite frankly, the last two sentences in your first post, do appear to be promoting the organization.

Rayjoe

This has already been approved.

I am not sure which forum you are speaking of. This is a thread about the GWRRA on this forum.
 

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gwrra?

Sorry Larry, I assumed that GWRRA would have a forum for addressing these issues.

Rayjoe
 

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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #6
My first 5 day trip on my "new to me Goldwing" using the Gold Book.

I planned to take a ride across the cascades, then across the state of Washington down the eastern edge of the state into Clarkston and then ride rattle snake pass, then home along the Columbia river. Solo, camping and no immediate itinerary. As I was packing my stuff, I remembered the Gold Book. I picked it up and figured out the usefulness of it. It was worthy of bringing along on the trip. I also noted that a GWRRA member had posted that he had camping space provided. Great. I called his number. His wife answered the phone. In one minute, she gave me their address and invited me to their place.

I showed up, had a cup of coffee, and we shared some motorcycling adventures. Instead of camping in my tent that night, I stayed in their guest cabin. I brought my own gear into the cabin, got up at 4:30 am, packed my gear and headed out. I warned them that I was an early riser and that I would be gone before they even through about breakfast. I sent them a nice thank you card for their hospitality. I snapped this picture right before I departed.

Here are some pictures I took on that trip.







 

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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #7
Sorry Larry, I assumed that GWRRA would have a forum for addressing these issues.

Rayjoe
No worries. Welcome. This is not going to be a total love fest for the GWRRA.

Hopefully it can stay around awhile and some folks will learn a little about the organization without the marketing and promotions from them. This is for members or folks who are interested in it. One can search other threads for the bashing of it if that is what they want to read.

“Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson.
 

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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #8
Those GWRRAs are a bunch of money grabbin', Harley hatin' SO...
Oops! I just read the third paragraph in your post. Uh...



...never mind. :blushing:


:cooldevil:
You are welcome too! Is all of your communication skills learned on Facebook? :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I will share one more of my experiences with the use of the Gold Book while traveling. These are not big deals, but they are fond memories for me. I hope that others share their experiences as well.

Steve (Wine_r) and I planned a Dec. 2011 trip from the northwest to the middle of Texas, where he was going to head north into Missouri and I was planning on spending a weekend at my brother's snow bird place in Mission Texas.

We committed to camping there and back. Traveling in December, setting and breaking camp each day deminishes an already short day. We could do 400 at most if we were setting and breaking camp. It was hard for us to judge how far we could make it in a day, so setting an itinerary wasn't going to be possible. We both didn't want that anyway. I called a member out of the Gold Book and told him of our plans. He asked when, I said, hell, I don't have an idea. His location was 125 miles dead west of El Paso, Texas and 15 miles north of Columbus. When he was giving me directions, he said to be sure to mark my odometer when I turn and start looking for a drive way at 14.5 miles. Dark, in the middle of the night, it is hard to distinguish a fence post from a drive way in west Texas. There was no nice lamp post and a paved drive way. He lived 1/2 mile off the highway on a cow path. He lived completely off the grid with solar powered everything and had no such thing as even a yard light. As we were traveling north, looking for his place, there wasn't even a yard light for miles around. Had to have been a mistake. Go to 15 miles on the odometer and tried the cell phone. Nothing. Was looking around and there 1/2 mile away was somebody that was waving an LED lantern in a signaling manner. Found the driveway....lol and in we went.

Come to find out the guy had built everything there. Designed his well to run off of a solar panel. His house was 2,000 sq ft, heated with solar, along with his water of course. His electricity was generated from solar and he was completely off the grid. His connection to the world was a satellite receiver to which he had a phone that worked some of the time. Sounds like roughing it. On the contrary, the house had every creature comfort known to mad. All of this cement work was detailed and designed with bricks, shells, and different shades of colored glass. His battery system and control center occupied half of a double sized garage. His water tank held 1,000 gallons of water and it was fed totally by a solar operated well pump. Turns out, he was an engineer, a writer and a designer for off grid installations. All self taught. It was quite a home tour.

We talked motorcycles and adventure. The guy was getting close to 80 years old and confided to me that his riding days were over and that he would probably be selling his motorcycle, a 94 SE with 20,000 miles on it. I loved the Green color and he was the original owner. I wanted to leave mine there and buy his, but I was 2000+ miles from home and I didn't want to delay my trip as this bike would need new tires and a change of fluids before it was road worthy again. He and his wife prepared us a nice breakfast and coffee. It was hard to get away. We wanted to make tracks, but their hospitality was so warm. I am sure out there, they don't get many drop by guests.

When I got home, I contacted a forum member and let him know about the bike. He went and bought it and dragged it home on a trailer. My new friend was so appreciative of getting his bike sold by my referral, he paid my membership for two more years in advance.

It is just a small part of the adventure. But it created a fond memory and the value added of the Gold Book can not be over stated.

West of El Paso....







 

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I joined the GWRRA a few months ago. They seem to be a good group of people. Got a call from the local chapter welcoming me and inviting me to some breakfast meetings.
I feel you can find good and bad with anything that you do.
So far so good for me.
 

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I am a member of the GWRRA and have been since 2006. I served as the Chapter Educator for 5 years, 2007-2012. As Chapter Educator, you are required to give at least a 5 minute discussion on motorcycle safety at every chapter meeting and write an article on motorcycle safety once a month for the chapter newsletter. I always researched the topic before presenting it. I never stood in front of the chapter and lectured about safety topic but I would bring up the desired the safety topic and give a small thoughts on the topic then open up of discussion among the chapter members. We all learned together,some may know something better than me. I haven taken lots of safety courses and I have actually even became one that gives the safety courses. That is one of the benefits of the GWRRA, is they promote safety. You do not have to participate in the "Levels" program. But the "Levels" program is all about safety. So why wouldn't you want to? Don't we all want to be better and safer riders? I have been riding for 34 years, and I feel like I am still learning. I am now working on getting my riders coach certificate from the State of Texas to be able to give BRC, ARC, and ERC courses.

The GWRRA is a non-profit organization a 501(c)4. Any chapter money raised must be spent and a chapter can only carry over several hundreds of dollars to the next year. The chapter I am with, Tx-P, we donate any excess money to a worthy organization around Christmas time. Sometimes, it could be a food bank, or shelters to help homeless people. We all know this and we make a group decision as to how the excess money is spent.

To me, the GWRRA gives you what you put into in it. Yes, there may be some clickish chapters, but that's not the organization's stance. The motto of the GWRRA motto is "Fun, Safety, and Knowledge". No, we cannot discuss religion or politics at chapter meetings because those are subjects that has many different view points and can cause trouble.
 

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No, we cannot discuss religion or politics at chapter meetings because those are subjects that has many different view points and can cause trouble.
That is the reason I decided not to join.

Figured I'd just get myself kicked out.
Those subjects always come up around me.

I enjoy the stories about the gold book.
 

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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #14
We have Nassir 9 coming up in July in Sioux Falls, SD. I just checked the Gold Book and Sioux Falls has 16 members in the Gold Book and 10 others in small towns close by Sioux Falls. As the trip gets closer, I might give those members a call and let them know about this forum and our Sioux Falls plans. Some more local area participation might be good.
 

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GWRRA # 010834

I've been a member for awhile except for a break between 1991 and 2013 while I was raising kids. The organization has changed a whole lot during my prolonged absence. I was the forming chapter director for chapters started in Vicksburg, ms and Charlotte, nc. I was an area representative in North Carolina. Back then we had fun, shared tips and rode our bikes. It truly used to be lots of fun. It was about the bike and rides. I went to a chapter formation meeting in Southern Utah a while back. All I heard was "I'm a Level blah blah blah rider and I've done blah blah blah." I left the meeting disgusted. When the focus goes back to fun and riding and the bike I may be back. Until then I will pay my dues for Wing World.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I am fortunate to live in a large metropolitan area with 4 chapters within a 100 miles of riding distance. I am currently following the chapter websites for 3 of them and my plan is to start attending those 3 chapters and see what the different flavor is. Eventually, I see myself riding regularly with one or two of them and on occasion, joining the other two chapters on special events that provide free food, campouts or dancing girls. :)
 

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I've been riding since about 1972, started on a '70 Norton 750. Then came a Trident, life, jobs, school, basic, career, marriage ..... no kids yet .... then in 1995 "Wife Unit" accepted a ride on back of a buddies tourer as we were out on a ride .... she liked that better than the back of our '74 Trident (I know, makes no sense to me neither) so I started looking and August 1995 found a '85 GL1200A that had been owned and garaged and ridden through two POs, both of whom were agents in my Dept and one of whom who had trooped his early days with my riding buddy. Like extended family. We bought it based on a phone call, pulled a trailer across state to pick up.


Then .... we started looking for more further longer ride opportunities and I soon learned about GWRRA and "Wing World", I had no PC. I joined for the magazine in Dec 1995. Through and into early 1997 I either rode just us two or with my buddy, he was also my work supervisor. May 1997 saw this bunch of GLs at Staunton Mall, then it was open walkways. It was a "Mall Show". New Chapter VA-R meet and greet. Soon I started getting hand written newsletters with invites to meetings each month so then .... we started attending .... then we started going on rides ..... and my HD riding buddy and his wife joined us on these chapter rides ..... THIS WAS FUN.


2001 I got a call about being CE .... took that on until 2006, became ACD, then a couple short months later, CD through 2011, since then I've dropped back some, did the MEC deal, am WM and RC now, ..... and through it all met and made "from-then-on" life long friends, some of whom we have lost sad to say due to illness, but not forgotten while others we've seen just stop coming as their life took them down a different path for whatever reason, but all of them have been a lot of FUN.


It's a good hour's ride / drive to any chapter meeting, staff meeting, most dinners, and many ride start points .... I've burnt a lot of gas just getting there ..... but that's OK. This weekend Saturday was our Christmas Party .... and then Sunday, our regular meeting (yeah, might could have spread those two out a week apart).


Anyway, joined it for the magazine back in the day, now I hardly spend more than an hour a month on the magazine. But I recall the rides, the meals, the parties, the picnics, the jokes, the learning, the evenings spent on a patio with friends in the cool night air with a fire pit for heat knowing that there was a dark & very cool 1-1/2 hour ride home and work the next AM at zero dark thirty .... Yeah ..... I've more than gotten my dues worth out of my GWRRA membership dues.


Just today I got my "Life Membership" cards and patches for "Wife Unit" and my vests .... 20 years.
 

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Friend of Bill W.
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Discussion Starter #20
I've been riding since about 1972, started on a '70 Norton 750. Then came a Trident, life, jobs, school, basic, career, marriage ..... no kids yet .... then in 1995 "Wife Unit" accepted a ride on back of a buddies tourer as we were out on a ride .... she liked that better than the back of our '74 Trident (I know, makes no sense to me neither) so I started looking and August 1995 found a '85 GL1200A that had been owned and garaged and ridden through two POs, both of whom were agents in my Dept and one of whom who had trooped his early days with my riding buddy. Like extended family. We bought it based on a phone call, pulled a trailer across state to pick up.


Then .... we started looking for more further longer ride opportunities and I soon learned about GWRRA and "Wing World", I had no PC. I joined for the magazine in Dec 1995. Through and into early 1997 I either rode just us two or with my buddy, he was also my work supervisor. May 1997 saw this bunch of GLs at Staunton Mall, then it was open walkways. It was a "Mall Show". New Chapter VA-R meet and greet. Soon I started getting hand written newsletters with invites to meetings each month so then .... we started attending .... then we started going on rides ..... and my HD riding buddy and his wife joined us on these chapter rides ..... THIS WAS FUN.


2001 I got a call about being CE .... took that on until 2006, became ACD, then a couple short months later, CD through 2011, since then I've dropped back some, did the MEC deal, am WM and RC now, ..... and through it all met and made "from-then-on" life long friends, some of whom we have lost sad to say due to illness, but not forgotten while others we've seen just stop coming as their life took them down a different path for whatever reason, but all of them have been a lot of FUN.


It's a good hour's ride / drive to any chapter meeting, staff meeting, most dinners, and many ride start points .... I've burnt a lot of gas just getting there ..... but that's OK. This weekend Saturday was our Christmas Party .... and then Sunday, our regular meeting (yeah, might could have spread those two out a week apart).


Anyway, joined it for the magazine back in the day, now I hardly spend more than an hour a month on the magazine. But I recall the rides, the meals, the parties, the picnics, the jokes, the learning, the evenings spent on a patio with friends in the cool night air with a fire pit for heat knowing that there was a dark & very cool 1-1/2 hour ride home and work the next AM at zero dark thirty .... Yeah ..... I've more than gotten my dues worth out of my GWRRA membership dues.


Just today I got my "Life Membership" cards and patches for "Wife Unit" and my vests .... 20 years.
Thank you for sharing your GWRRA story.

It is a positive experience, not a "I don't care for that crap" story.

My hope is that there will be many more successful stories written here.
 
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