Thursday, May 24, 2012

On Roadies and Rhodies

A week or so ago, just as I started to photograph the lovely lilac- and lavender-colored, purple and pink rhododendrons in Vienna's Stadtpark, sirens blared on the nearby Ringstrasse and people started running to the Ring.  Reluctantly, I joined the crowd to see what was happening in time to witness a kazillion motorcycles, mainly Harley-Davidsons, roar by.  In ten minutes or so the very noisy Easy Rider parade ended and I returned to the quiet serenity of the Rhodies.


  1. Here in SD we have Sturgis, where a quarter million Harley riders come to spend a week in the Black Hills. The sound of the Vee Twins echos across the whole state. Didn't think those folks would get to Vienna. But they are interesting to see.

  2. A quarter million for an entire week! Yikes! That would be a lot of noise.

    Motorcycles are very popular in Austria; one sees them often in the summer, especially on Alpine roads. I think motorcycle aficionados love that Harley sound. I guess it's an acquired taste. I'm more partial to the sound of birds singing.

    1. My estimate of Sturgis numbers is low. In 2011 DOT traffic estimates is 415,000+ motorcycles. This is down from over half a million in 1999 and 2000, the 60th year of the event. Many of the riders spend a few days there rather than the whole week. Don't much care for the noisy exhaust pipes, but apparently many are drawn to that. It is fun to ride bikes in mountains, but I'm partial to quieter machines.

    2. Good grief (as my grandmother would say)! Remind me not to retire in Sturgis! I'm with you when it comes to quieter machines. There was an energy fair in Vienna a couple of weeks ago and the electric cars—and motorcycles—were amazingly quiet. The future.,,or maybe the future-future.