You still remember that first ride...
Whether it was on the back of
somebody's KZ or with the kid on the mini-bike down the block. Maybe you
were one of the lucky kids with the Trail 50. Whether you started riding as a kid, in college or in your
50's, we all share something in common.
Your passion may be vintage, speedway, choppers,
Harleys, dirt climbers, cruiser, or sport-touring- yet there is something about riding that allows us to see the world in a different way.
Despite our different rides, we all share one
thing in common.
Is that why we still remember that first ride so vividly?
is the core theme prevalent throughout Pashnit.com. What
has always made this site different is the focus is on the ride, the thrill, and the excitement of riding.
are the things that make us passionate.
What you see here is all based on a very simple concept. And
after endless sessions of work on the site, not to mention thousands of
photographs later tirelessly trying to capture this emotion of riding on
film, here we are together six years later. Pashnit.com has grown to become unlike anything
you've ever read before.
Looking back on the last few years, this approach has
made a tremendous impact on the motorcycling community. The response to this site has been overwhelming. Thousands of riders visit every day from around the world and the Pashnit.com site now gets over 1,000,000 (that's 1 million!), visitors every year.
Even more amazing is that mention of the Pashnit.com site has always been passed via word of
mouth. From one rider to the next.
riders that made 'Pashnit' into what it is today. Riders like
yourself, regardless of what you ride, who've never forgotten the
excitement of that first ride.
Nothing quite like it
The California Motorcycle Roads website is unlike anything ever created before.
There are thousands of motorcycling websites. How is it possible
for one site to be so different? Make such an impression on
the average every-day rider?
You see, this site is all about the
The incredible success of the
California Motorcycle Roads site has revolved around this rather
approach. To show you the road, let you read through the impression of it, and let you decide what type of
road you want to ride. Oddly enough, although this site was intended for a motorcycle audience,
bicyclists, sports car pilots and even RV Travelers use this site on a
Someone once commented I must be a really modest guy. For the first few
years of Pashnit.com- this site was created with the author wishing to
remain completely anonymous. Location was never mentioned, nor had I even bothered to mention my name on any of the pages they had looked over.
This site really isn't about me- it was created for the everyday rider
whether you bought your motorcycle yesterday or have been riding 40 years. The rider
known as 'The Pashnit One' is really just some guy. Some guy that set out to combine a poetic style of writing with photography, and have it all be about the Joy of Motorcycling.
|I'm curious on why you chose the name
Pashnit? It's a question that's been rattling around for quite some time now, and I'd love to know what the answer is... I can't
reason it out.
When I owned my Yamaha Venture, I went out and obtained a license plate
that spelled out the words 'On a Quest'. But when I bought the
FJ1200, I needed something new after riding year round 50,000 miles in 2
years (and not even owning a car). After all that riding, I needed one word to describe the
way I felt about motorcycling. So I came up with 23 different
spellings of the word 'passionate' - and the PASHNIT moniker was the one
that was available. Fast forward a few years when I had to come up
with a domain name for a website that would be about the passion of
motorcycle riding. And thus became pashnit.com! It's my
license plate on the bike.
Your photography is unlike
anything posted to other types of motorcycle websites. What kind of
camera are you using?
There's a lot of 35mm photography on the pashnit site. Those pics had to be individually scanned,
cropped and edited for physical size and file size. The latest pages are all digital of course.
Some years back, I started from scratch with a decades old 35mm SLR
Canon FTb with a simple 50mm 1:14 lens. First time I'd ever had a manual camera, and I had
no idea how to even work all the dials. It was a terrific camera, although somewhat old (decades!) It's
made of solid brass.
|I inherited a SLR Minolta XG-M with a Kiron 28mm-105mm zoom lens
after the Canon developed a light-leak in bright sunlight.
A large portion of the CA Moto Roads photography was done with this terrific camera although I used
the camera so much while riding and shooting film for this site, the lens
started falling apart.
The next camera was another 35mm SLR, this time a Nikon EM with a
80-200mm zoom lens. I wore this camera out too as motorcycle travel and these sorts of camera are not always too friendly with one another.
The fantastic panorama shots sprinkled across this site are the result
of a Minolta point-and-shoot panoramic camera, one of the very first to
come onto the market in the early 90's.
Finally made the jump into digital with a Canon
G5, commonly known as 'the brick'. After over 10,000 photos in a little over a year, it quit
working on me. Then another 30,000 shots with a Canon Pro1 till that wore out.. As of today, I'm using a DSLR Sony A350 which is an excellent 14 megapixel camera.
||You travel, a lot, and write grand
stories. Do you write it all down as you are going, or do you have a laptop
Back in the day, I wrote the text for each road in my head while I was riding the road.
Which is probably where the feel of the style
of writing comes from, because I wrote it while feeling the sensation of
the bike, the wind, the sound, the feeling of the corners, and road around
me. I write it in my
head, and then at the end of each road, I do jot down some notes, usually
about landmarks or the sequence of things you will see. If
I'm on a loop, and riding 4 specific roads- I need to keep everything
straight. I sometimes also
take notes on the photographs I'm taking along the way with the 35mm
there's a lot of stopping, and 180's to get the right shot and angle
and lighting correct! Sometimes
the bicyclists are traveling faster than I am!! I have also carried
a miniature tape recorder with me also, and at the end of the road,
recorded a few thoughts too. But
that's how. The secret is
all the road pages were written, so to speak, while actually riding the
|As for the two books - Those are based off rather copious journals
I kept along the way while traveling. While
riding, I hadn't come up with the idea to convert it into a book until
later, I was just recording everything that happened- interesting people
you meet, and strange things that happen. The books were actually written a year or two later based off the
respective journals. The
10,000 mile book took 2 years to write; it was a tremendous amount of work!
|The pictures throughout the pashnit.com
website are really great. Are you a professional photographer?
Sort of. Not in the classical sense, I don't make a living
by it. I suppose you could say I'm completely self-taught having
never taken any sort of formal instruction. Years back, I did try to
read one of those Photography for Beginners books, but ironically
it made no sense to me at all. To boot, I doubt I could even
speak camera-jargon in a room full of photographers.
However, I acquired my first camera over 20 years ago and you do learn some
things by trial-and-error. Learning to shoot compelling photos of
roads is just that- a learned trait. I've shot hundreds upon
hundreds of pics of roads, and with each roll try to improve upon the
style and feel of the pic. Several riders I've conversed with said
they went out and tried to capture the same shots and found it more
difficult to replicate then they imagined. But after awhile it's a
bit of a science- of light, angles, and shapes. When I head out to
ride a new road, this nifty digital Canon G5 allows me to shoot to my
hearts content and in the last year, have shot thousands upon thousands of
I really like your photos, can I use
them on my own site/magazine/newspaper?
I don't mind if you pull pics off the site, just when you do, credit where you got
them and let me know via email. What I do on the
pashnit.com site, since there are a bunch of photos that are shot by
others that people have sent to me is I credit them in the .alt tag or if there
is a caption to the pics, I give credit there. But it only works if you
credit where you got the photo.
For example, the motorcycle rental website California Motorcycle Adventures used requested to use Pashnit Photography in the development of their all new website. Each page adds in a credit to Pashnit.com
What I'd suggest is just add an .alt tag
to your graphic: That way, it's rather imbedded into the html and you really don't notice it. Just when the pointer passes over the
the alt tag pops up. It might look something like this- <....alt="Thanks to
www.pashnit.com site for the pic"> or something like that. So just add that to any other photo you pull off the site and
email me since I
am always eager to take a look at other pages on the web.
a lot of photos, and a lot of the pictures have been posted to message
boards of all kinds. Real simple, just credit where you got the
photo from and provide a link on over here. My photographs have also appeared in national magazines
and newspapers. If you are the editor of such a publication, get in
touch with me.
I'd like to suggest a ride I
don't see on your list.
Several of the pages have been written by other riders with yours truly serving as the
editor and putting it all together into a page. I welcome any text
or pics sent to me. When I shoot the pics, I try to find something unique about the road, and the rest I leave up to you. If you want to see your favorite road listed, run through a couple of the
pages to get a general feel how the format is set up. If you're digital, just keep the pic
setting at its smallest size.
The early days of this site is shot with a manual 35mm SLR
each photo was individually scanned and edited (over 1300 now) although this was extremely
time-consuming. A large majority of the road photography has been reshot with advent of digital. Much better quality and a whole new format with larger photos per page was introduced.
With regards to the description of the road itself, I don't need a book (although if it merits it- several of my
write-ups are rather detailed with all the area history and such like the Sac Delta Hwy 160 page), even a couple
paragraphs sent to me I've worked with to create enough text for a page.
I am especially interested in any roads you may not see on this list. There are
a few major holes in the list, the area just south of Santa Clarita, and most of the
back roads around San Diego.
As my rather intense feverish pace to get out and re-ride many of the roads I've ridden over the years, this
time shooting pics- has drawn to an abrupt close with the birth of my daughter- I find a sudden void in terms of
progressing the site to my ultimate goal of actually having a page for every road. My
how life changes. So lately I've been on this quest to find other riders that may have archives of the stuff I'm looking for- at least enough to create a page.
I'm not from California but
am planning a trip there. I was poking around the links on your site
but am a bit lost as I don't know the state at all. Any suggestions
on where to ride?
For years, I've had people ask me this sort of question. Then
someone asked if I would actually write a custom trip itinerary for
them. A few years ago, I worked on Pashnit Trip Planning writting itineraries for solo riders visiting California for their
yearly vacation, small groups that don't prefer a guide, and all sorts of
riders heading into California from other states. I was asked by the editor of Cycle World Magazine to plan out
their yearly staff ride, then lead it, which was great fun. I've since retired from writing these as they are immensely time consuming and averaged about 40 hours apiece to write ranging from 40-60 pages of text, maps & photos.
In its place, the Pashnit Forum Trip Planning section was born and after registering for the forum, you can easily post a query or question... and Pashnit Members will be more than happy to help you out. For additional in-depth info, you may also log onto the California Motorcycle Roads website to read about a vast majority of the roads in California with maps, pics, satellite maps and local links. More info than you'll ever have time for.
|Then again, some folks have simply opted for an organized tour. Just show up at the launch point on Friday morning and we'll take care of the rest. No worries on where to ride, routing, lodging, meals, you get the idea! Pashnit Motorcycle Tours conducts 14 guided tours a year of the Sierra Nevada, Central Cal and Northern California. The ride season here runs from March to October and we'll lead some 17,000 miles of tours this year. I've love to have you join the Pashnit Alumni of riders that I've had the good fortune of sharing this passion for Calfornia roads with.
3-D Map by Delorme.com
What software do you use to create your maps?
It's Microsoft Streets & Trips available at any software/computer
store for like 30 or 40 bucks. Worth every penny for the vagabond traveler. The program works pretty well although every now and then it
claims a road doesn't exist when there is indeed a road. It doesn't
have any cool features but as you can see, it serves its purpose.
Keep in mind that I create the maps, and then edit each one to clean it
I also started adding Delorme.com 3-D Topographic Maps. It creates
3-D terrain maps that're ultra cool and will show you the road against the
actual terrain. On several of the pages, are
satellite photos which are very cool- Breckenridge
Road and Angeles
Crest. The black and white topographical maps are via the USGS
site, and the color ones like on Breckenridge Road are via Mapquest.com.
Google Earth Satellite Mapping is now free! Read on...
|3-D Satellite mapping by Google Earth
There are over 1200 Google Earth 3-D Satellite Maps (Google Earth) added to the CA Moto Roads webpages. This new mapping technology allows us to use 3-D photographs of California Motorcycle Roads to get a better idea of what to expect. Below is Pinehurst Rd, a little used East Bay Area backroad that delves through a redwood forest. The CA Moto Roads pages may have 1-2 of these or as many as 6-8 of them that will cover the entire length of the road rotated and zoomed on key areas.
It takes a bit of spatial ability to see what you're looking at, but once you ride the road, then look at the Google Earth Maps, you can recall specific corners. Funny how the brain can do that. The Google Maps are but another evolution in the CA Moto Roads pages in giving you as much information as possible as you set of to explore new roads and new regions of this motorcycle paradise of California.
Pinehurst Rd, East Bay Area
I've been using the site for several years and it sure has grown. Just how big has it gotten?
The Pashnit Family of websites indeed have become a massive body of work. The Pashnit Site was launched in 1999 & over the last decade, has grown into a massive body of work. The latest count was over 600 pages of text focused on California Motorcycle Roads.
The Pashnit Forum is rapidly expanding and at last count has over 100,000 photos posted and over 30,000 members worldwide.
A Pashnit Clothing line and broad range of Pashnit Products.
Pashnit Motorcycle Tours continues to provide tours of California. We offer over 10,000 miles of professionally guided tours each year & our return rate can be as high as 85% of our alumni will sign up for another tour.
Through the years, the Pashnit Moto product company has grown into a busy global operation. We ship 30% of all product sales outside the USA. A parallel operation focuses solely on parts just for the Suzuki Hayabusa- click on PashnitBusa.com to see this A-Z candy store of goodies!
Pashnit Moto, the product arm of the Pashnit family, currently represents over 75 manufactures spanning over 40,000 part numbers and still growing. Plans are in place to steadily bring on thousands of new part numbers and numerous major brands.
Pashnit is active on PashnitFacebook, PashnitTours Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN, Flikr & YouTube. JOIN or FOLLOW us on any of these social networks to stay current on our daily growth!
Feature articles about Pashnit have appeared in Cycle World Magazine, City Bike, Friction Zone, Motorcycle Tour & Travel and in the debut issue of Road Trip Magazine.
Tim's motorcycle travels have gotten the attention of National Geographic, Rider, Motorcyclist, Motorcycle Tour & Travel, VIA Magazine, American Motorcyclist, City Bike Magazine, BMW North America, Honda Riders Association of America, numerous newspapers and even the cable channel Outdoor Life Network. Tim has appeared on television, done numerous live radio interviews, and public speaking on motorcycle travel for BMW.
Currently the Pashnit family spans nearly 30 domain names and still growing. Pashnit is not just a site. It's a lifestyle.
Do you ever do speaking engagements?
Short time ago, was asked to be the guest speaker at A&S BMW's Garagenpartei & spoke about how to plan for a multi-day trip. It was very interactive with a lot of hands-on examples from running the tour company delivered to a great crowd and good people!
I've done quite a few interviews over the years. Live radio is defintely the most challenging. Usually it's motorcycle radio programs ranging from Floriday to California.
The Harley Dude and Beemerman RoadShow are a weekly podcast program about motorcycling topics and info. I've done 3 different interviews for them. You can listen to two of these podcast interviews on the "The Harley Dude and Beemerman Road Show."
- Linky or click the photo at right.
Cycle World Radio was the latest with a 30 minute live interview. These are always fun and enjoyable to share with the world the expansiveness of features to the Pashnit site.
Pashnit Motorcycle Tours made an appearance on the FOX40 News in this engaging news piece about organized touring on a motorcycle. Shot on location in the Sierra Nevada Mountains during the Memorial Day Tour in May- this proved to be great fun and entirely a new media to work with.
After several hours of interviews and filming the tour participants, the news station had their story! Watch the video with the link below. You can read the full story here.
Watch the video here
I noticed that you have some grammatical or spelling errors
in your text, is it okay if I let you know about this?
Actually, I welcome any comments and corrections. You have no idea how much work it is to try and edit
webpages, all essentially
text-based. Sometimes, I'll just surf through my own pages just skimming looking for grammatical and
So, I welcome any suggestions or changes you
might suggest. Just cut and paste the text into an email and send it on over and I'll make the changes. I too feel a little odd making suggestions or corrections to other webmasters, but I have in
the past pointed out tiny errors that might have a big effect. I've certainly learned
a lot since I started working on this, and there's a lot I wish I would of
known when the page building began.
||Is the California Motorcycle Roads
compilation available in a book form?
Someday. But not yet. A book project in some regards would
seem inevitable. When you have this much text, the immense traffic, and
the intense following that Pashnit.com has gained- it sounds as if
it would have to be something that just has to happen.
One of the more interesting things I have been asked for is a Coffee
Table book of Pashnit Photography of California Roads. The more I
think about that, the more I like that idea.
What portions of the site are pay- and which are free?
Only the California Motorcycle Roads portion of the site requires a $20 yearly subscription. Members come from all over the world seeking the knowledge contained within these hundreds of pages of text about CA Roads.
Imagine 600 pages of raw text, thousands of maps, thousands of photos, and all available for just $20. If it were indeed converted into a book - it's enough material for an estimated 6 books. Would that be worth 20 bucks? You bet. If you are coming to CA to ride- or already here - it'll be the best 20 bucks you ever spent!
The Pashnit Company has grown through the years. But only the CA Moto Roads is a pay site the Forum, the PashnitMoto, PashnitBusa are all accessible for free.
As the years start to accumulate and the size of the site
continues to grow- it's become clear that the site needs to be self-sustaining to
ensure its continued presence on the web.
Multitudes of riders have remarked
the 'California Motorcycle Roads' website has become a daily part
of their lives- don't miss out on a single day! Subscribe right now for
the minor sum of $20 per year.
Possible to pay for the subscription other than PayPal?:
have asked if there were a means to pay for subscribe other than PayPal. These individuals normally contacted me directly via phone
(530-391-1356) or email to work out a method
that is compatible for their individual situation. So give me a
My extreme thanks to all who've taken the time to offer their
hard earned dollars to support the Pashnit.com web site.
Who created the
One guy. With a goal being to share this passion for riding with all motorcyclists. And the story might be best explained here with a recent feature story about the author of Pashnit.com in a recent issue of Road Trip Magazine.
Click here to read the Article.
Standing atop another mountaintop in search of that perfect shot
Pashnit atop Monitor Pass