Upgrading the Pavement with Kay Mitchell: When Kay isn’t enjoying time with her grandbabies or other family members you can probably find her on the open road. Wonderful women rider who’s passion and appreciation for motorcycles is so heartfelt.
Love that! Here is more about Kay…
Name: Kay Mitchell
Location: Hinesburg Vermont
Occupation: Still working on that. I think that I’d love to sell motorcycles or help to develop more female friendly bikes and accessories.
Current ride: 2008 Harley Fatboy (Kate)
When did you start riding and what got you involved in motorcycles?
I was drawn to motorcycles from an early age and would befriend anyone who gave me the opportunity to ride with them! But then I grew up and had children and became responsible. I was like my puppy in the window every time I’d hear a bike on our road or would pass one during my daily commute. I so longed to ride again. Then my husband finally decided that he might like to get a bike and I was there before he could second think it!
How has riding motorcycles impacted your life?
I’ve owned Kate (her Fatboy) since Aug. 2009 and wake up every morning hoping that today is a good day to ride. She’s certainly helped me build confidence in myself and taught me that if I take some risks the results can be magnificent!
What has been your biggest challenge with riding?
Kate is a big bike and since I didn’t know how to ride at all when I got her, everything has been a challenge. Hill starts still get me sometimes; I don’t roll back but do stall occasionally. I also can’t balance on one foot so my right foot isn’t free for the foot brake unless I’m still moving. I’m still afraid to try to try to do a tight U-turn, but am closer to overcoming that fear than I was a year ago.
What do you like most about your model motorcycle?
I love that she’s mine.
What modifications have you made?
For my Birthday this year Jeff, my husband bought me Rinehart Crossback pipes, P and M performance Air Breather, and Screaming Eagle tuner. I also bought a new speedo with a tach that allows me to see what gear I’m in (the stock one only shows when you’re in 6th gear). Probably the most valuable modification was the windshield, it’s a quick release but I’ve never taken it back off!
When you’re not riding motorcycles what are you other interest?
Spending time with my Grandbabies (two of them) and time with my children. I also enjoy the pool, especially after a long ride on a hot day. In the winter I sit by the fireplace with a good book and wait for spring.
What advice do you have for other women riders?
Have faith in your ability to learn. Don’t be afraid to push past your comfort zone. There were many days in the beginning that I was so uncertain about my ability, but I had waited so long that I just couldn’t believe that I had made a mistake and refused to accept the possibility.
How tall are you? 5 Ft. 71/2 inches unless I’ve shrunk!
What is your weather like year round? Vermont, that about says it.
How is riding therapy for you?
In a lot of ways Kate saved me, not from death but from depression. The year after I got her, my husband deployed to Afghanistan for a year and while he was gone our 2-year-old puppy developed cancer and had to be put down. I worked for the Army doing deployment cycle support for soldiers and their families and it was very demanding. Kate became my solace, time on the road to not think of anything except the peace of riding. I still get that same feeling every time I climb on.
When Kay explains the benefits of riding her bike during stressful times, I sure can relate and I bet if you’re reading this you can relate too.
We’re the lucky folks that “get” riding is good for our health. If you have to explain that to someone, forget it they just would not understand.
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