see my gallery for more photos
Poughkeepsie Train Station
Driving 65 miles to the train station at 4:30am in a snow storm doesn't sound like a great idea, but it was necessary in order to get to New York City on a reasonable budget for the day.  Minus the fact that we're in the middle of drunk-driver prime time, I was navigating the slippery snow covered roads while dodging deer which would think nothing of getting all up in my grill in a rear-wheel drive sports car.  I've gathered that you've already assumed that just by reading this I made it safe and sound, and you'd be right.

I got to the train station with plenty of time to spare.  From here it was an uneventful ride to Grand Central Terminal as the sun rose over the Hudson Valley.  A 30-minute brisk walk in the snow through Manhattan over to Javits completed the commute to the show.

Now, as this post is rather lengthly, I've used my fancy-schmancy newbie blog-writing prowess to put this little "read more" link right here, so if you want to read on, click it and you'll be as happy as a clam.

Honda NC700X
At the show I ran into Mike (who is credited with a few of the photos in this post) right away who was waiting for me there in the Honda display.  Being that we were there right when the show opened, we had a lot of the place to ourselves.

I'll come right out and say it - there wasn't anything that flat out blew me away at the show this year, but still a lot of good models that I had the opportunity to see in person for the first time, although they've been available for a little bit already.

In the Honda booth there were two models of particular of noteworthiness.  The first was the CB1000R, which has been long available in Europe but is a relative newcomer to the North American market.  This naked street-fighter features a generation-old CBR1000RR engine with great styling and an upright, ride all day seating position.

The other is a totally new model, filling the Adventure bike category (or in this case, the adventure-styled category), the NC700X.  This particular floor model featured an automatic transmission.  It's comfortable riding position, light weight and long-travel suspension makes it seem a good do-it-all model which are getting more and more popular, though the lack of a clutch lever was an odd sensation.

Me aboard the Sprint GT
The next stop was the Triumph booth, one of my favorite manufacturers these days.  Besides their extremely popular sporting models, the two that I was most interested in were the new Sprint GT and the Tiger 800.  The former is Triumph's update to the Sprint ST (which it replaced in North America).  It's essentially the same bike with updated styling, more relaxed riding position and sitting on a longer wheelbase along with a few other improvements over the outgoing model.  This was among my favorites from the show.

Triumph Tiger 800
The Tiger 800 was a hotly-awaited model this past year and with good reason. The more street-oriented version shown here is outfittable with factory hard luggage and would make another great choice in the all-arounder segment.  The the XC variant (in the background) features a larger 21" wheel and more off-road oriented suspension for those who might want it.  After this point we met up with a bunch of other fellow riders from around the area who made it down to the show.

One of the many bikes features from custom builders
The show also featured a collection of custom bikes from builders.  There were a number of custom sport bikes and cafe racers (see my gallery for more), but this board-track inspired and Sportster-powered custom was one of my favorites.  Also in my gallery you'll find a few photos of the many vintage and antique bikes that were present.

The next booth to visit was the star of the show for us.  Located in the Dream Pavilion where a collection of rare, expensive and exotic bikes were featured was one of the 100 to-be produced EBR 1190 RS models.  The one featured here was a magnesium-wheeled carbon model and goes for a cool $47,000 - and it was open to the public to ruthlessly fondle.  I jumped at the chance to partake.
EBR 1190 RS. Gigity.
The bike felt incredibly light between the legs and insanely comfortable given the mission this bike was built for.  The hubless wheels where trick-as-hell and the carbon fiber bodywork absolutely beautiful.  Being a group of Buell enthusiasts, we all oogled over this one for a while.
Ducati 1199 Pingale
Ducati was the next stop and as scantily clad as the girls were, the 1199 Pingale was the star of this booth.  All kinds of techno wizardry including GPS data recording and electronically adjustable suspension on the higher end models makes this among the most advanced bikes going right now.  The bodywork looks fantastic in person giving a nice, taught-looking package.

Ducati Multistrda S Touring loaded with factory accessories
The other model I was interested in was also likely the most highly anticipated bike of recent years, the Multistrada 1200.  Another entrant into the fast-growing Adventure market, Ducati's variant is expectedly the most powerful (and lightest) in the segment.  Outfittable with tons of factory accessories from carbon to luggage, it's easy to set this bike up for whatever your needs dictate, from twisty canyon roads to (mild) off-roading to cross-country jaunts.  

Trading stories at the Dinosaur BBQ
After the show, we all piled into a couple cabs and headed to Harlem for a late lunch at the Dinosaur BBQ to chow down and trade ride stories for a couple hours.  Once the festivities were done, a few us hoofed it to the train station in Harlem where I was told to use the women's bathroom in lieu of the men's room being out of order and managed to be accosted by what I can only imagine was a homeless man yielding a shovel who talked to himself.  Ah, New York.  You'll meet the most interesting people here.

The train ride home was with good company, the drive home from the station long and tiring and after 14 hours from departing that morning I arrived at home, exhausted and satisfied.  Day over, time for bed, slept like a baby.

For more photos of lots more bikes and commentary, check out my gallery from the show.
1/23/2012 06:30:49 am

Good seeing you again can't wait till SpringTime!!!!!
Awesome site didn't know you had it!!!!!

1/23/2012 06:42:03 am

Thanks, Dave. Just started the site last week - feverishly trying to add relevant content!

1/23/2012 11:16:18 pm

Im diggin the blog


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