The Wind in my Face

What an absolutely amazing weekend!
I, like so many in the Crescenta Valley, had my fill on Sunday taking part in the annual Taste of Montrose. The event benefitted CVHS Prom Plus which hosts an after prom event at the YMCA. The cost to put on Prom Plus is more than $20,000 and Taste of Montrose is one of the biggest fundraisers. Thank you to the many people who supported Prom Plus by plunking down $20 for the wristband and for the restaurants that made it all possible.
Many folks who saw me on Sunday made a remark about my sunburned nose. That was from a ride I took on Saturday to Big Bear on the back of a Harley Davidson.
Saturday was the annual 100-mile ride that all chapters of BACA – Bikers Against Child Abuse – took part in and I was fortunate to be invited to ride along. Not owning a motorcycle, I rode as a passenger on the back of a Harley owned by local chapter member Chef.
Realize that the furthest I had ever been before on a motorcycle was around the block when I was a kid. Riding 100 miles I didn’t know if I’d be bored or scared or sick. What I discovered was an experience that was totally exhilarating!
The morning started when I showed up at Frank’s Famous on Verdugo. In the parking lot were 21 motorcycles and riders all decked out in leather “cuts” (vests) with BACA emblazoned on the back, helmets perched on their bikes.
Knowing about BACA, I wasn’t afraid of these imposing types – they’re out to protect kids after all (to learn more, read the story on page 3).
Around 10:15 a.m. we climbed aboard and headed off to Big Bear.
The goal of the ride is to keep the riders together as a pack, to show the strength of BACA. Those in the rear, the “tail gunners,” were responsible for keeping everyone riding tightly together. The group looked pretty impressive, too, and more than once I caught drivers in “cages” (cars) looking over at us. The ride was smooth and I was really enjoying myself.
Things got a bit more challenging in San Bernardino.
The wind kicked up just past Upland and though Chef didn’t flinch as the wind beat at us, I’m sure it wasn’t an easy ride.
The few hairs that popped out from under my helmet beat at my face, feeling like tiny razors. “Thrasher,” another BACA rider, said that could also have been the sand kicking at me. I was glad to have bought Chapstick.
As we started to climb up the 38 into Big Bear the wind died down and the temperature started to sink. It wasn’t long before we all pulled to the side to put on jackets. Then we continued up the hill, finally coming to a stop at Chad’s Place in Big Bear.
Thrasher is the youngest member of the Los Angeles BACA chapter and was recently presented with his BACA patch. At Chad’s Place Thrasher had the distinction of “setting his patch.” This meant that every fellow BACA member was invited to pour a cold beverage (you can guess what that might have been) down the back of his cut then slap the patch thereby “setting” it.
Though most of the group stayed in Big Bear, nine of us climbed back onto our bikes and headed back home.
It wasn’t until I took off my helmet and glasses that I saw how sunburned my nose was.
It was an exciting day and I’m proud to have been part – even for a little while – of a group so dedicated to helping kids.

Robin Goldsworthy is the publisher of the Crescenta
Valley Weekly. She can be
reached at
or (818) 248-2740.