Heard from our old friend Don Sharlow the other day. Don was formerly the trails manager in Big Bend National Park, but relocated to the Utah park system a few years ago. He called to let us know that his partner, John Lowe, recently fell and fractured his back. John used to also work at Big Bend National Park as head of maintenance. He is now based at the Sulphur Recreation Area in Oklahoma. Together they founded the Ride for Trails Bike Rally that benefited the Big Bend hiking trails and nearby schools in Brewster County. Seems John was working in his backyard and fell off a ladder and was on the ground for several hours before the neighbor’s kids spotted him. He is on the mend, slowly, but hoping to actually attend this year’s Ride for Trails, now operated by Big Bend Resort & Adventures in Terlingua. This 16th annual event was slated for October 18–19, but with the government shutdown, the route may have to be adjusted since the fun run always included a section of the National Park, which was one of the major highlights. (Let’s just hope this doesn’t screw up one of my most favorite Texas rallies.) Get well, Abajo John, and stay away from ladders… The American Legion Legacy Run started in Indianapolis this year and hit American Legion Post 554 in League City on August 22. The ride raises money for the American Legion Legacy Scholarship Program, and this year culminated with a parade in downtown Houston for the organization’s 95th annual National Convention. Look for a full report in next month’s issue… The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride is all about being dapper while riding classic bikes, with vests, bowties, tuxedos, top hats, silk scarves and monocles all standard fare. The Houston edition was held September 29 under rainy skies through the Heights area while simultaneous rides were also held in Austin, Dallas and El Paso. The DGR is a worldwide event and this year had more than 3,200 registered riders with a goal of raising $250,000 to fight prostate cancer. They beat that by more than 20 grand. Cheerio, ol’ chaps… Seems there was a battle brewing recently in Idaho with at least three factions fighting for the right to jump Snake River Canyon during next year’s 40th anniversary of the attempt by Evel Knievel. Well it seems that Big Ed Beckley of Bridgeport, Texas, has secured permission to do so and is presently working with the Idaho Bureau of Lands and the City of Twin Falls to work out details. Big Ed will use a 400 hp, rocket-assisted, nitro-burning American-made V-twin to attempt the 1,600-foot jump, using a parasail to land on the other side of the canyon. (Unlike Knievel’s Sky-Cycle, this bike actually uses a rear-wheel drive before the rocket kicks in.) The date has been set for September 7, 2014, and you can go to www.bigedbeckley.net to watch an animated video of what the jump will look like. Seems like a great reason to hang around that part of the country after Sturgis. Make Texas proud, Big Ed… During this year’s Lone Star Rally in Galveston, October 31–November 3, a Memorial Ride for Conrad Nicklus will be held by Desperado Motorcycles and Conrad’s dad, Jeff. Conrad was a noted figure within the Desperado network, an up-and-coming figure in the custom motorcycle industry that we lost in 2012. A memorial ride was held last year during the Sturgis Rally, but the one slated for this year in South Dakota ran into massive scheduling problems. So with a majority of Conrad’s friends and associates based in Texas, it only seemed right for his dad to sponsor a ride during the Lone Star Rally. Details are still sketchy as we go to press, but it appears that the Hotel Galvez will be the starting point at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 2. The ride is free, but patches will cost ya a $10 donation. Good friends Rick and Lena Fairless (Strokers Dallas) have already signed up. You should too… The inaugural River Rock Fest and Bike Rally will be held November 8–10 at Neal’s Lodges in Concan. And for those who have never visited Neal’s before, the area offers some of the best riding in Texas along the noted Three Sisters: Highways 335, 336 and 337. And while it may be a little too chilly to take a dip in the famous Frio River, the rally promises two days of live music, a poker run and bike show, a jalapeno-eating contest and something called wild hog catching. Go to www.nealslodges.com or call 830.232.6118 for details and ticket information… So with fall in the air, crisp mornings and stunning sunrises make for some of the most enjoyable motorcycling memories in all the Lone Star State. Be certain to get your share.