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Helge reporting on location from the Fish River Canyon, Namibia, Africa

Africa Adventure 2005 Live!Journal Chapters Menu

Chapter Seven: Bikes & Biographies

"There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign."
- Robert Louis Stevenson (Scottish essayist, poet and author, 1850-1894)

"The traveler was active; he went strenuously in search of people, of adventure, of experience. The tourist is passive; he expects interesting things to happen to him. He goes "sight-seeing."" - Daniel J. Boorstin (Jewish-American social historian and educator, 1914-2004)

"Tourists don't know where they've been, travelers don't know where they're going." - Paul Theroux (American travel writer and novelist, born 1941)

In this Bikes and Bio's Chapter, you'll have an opportunity to get "up close and personal" with the people and motorcycles of the Africa Adventure 2005.  Riders and participants were invited to send their "bio's" and favorite photographs; not only of themselves, but of their motorcycles too. Some kept it short and sweet. Others had more to say. Some haven't gotten around to it yet. The backgrounds and stories are as varied as the bikes. As is true for all chapters of the Live!Journal, content submitted by riders and participants is used unedited.

Unless otherwise noted, all images on this page were submitted by the respective autobiographers, and are used with their permission. Images may have been formatted to fit the page.

Friends of Curtis - Arturo Portillo to the left, World Tour and Africa GlobeRider David Wilde to the right, thousands of kilometers of the Alaska Highway ahead of them all.

Curtis Barnett - Texas USA

2005 BMW F650GS Dakar

Africa Adventure 2005

About Curtis. . .

(Editor's Note: Since Curtis was too distracted with trip preparations to submit his own bio and pictures, one of his good riding buddies, Arturo Portillo, sent the following. Arturo lives in New Mexico, USA. In addition to running his own business, he is a guide for another fine adventure touring company, MotoDiscovery (formerly Pancho Villa). He first met Curtis on the Tierra del Fuego tour in 2004. The fine photographic images to the left are courtesy of Arturo Portillo.)

I have ridden with Curtis (aka “Man with many patches”). That is his Yaqui Indian name given to him by me. He earned his name at a border crossing between Perito Moreno, Argentina and Coahique, Chile. It is a one-man post in the middle of a dirt road. The crossing gate was open so all the riders went thru the gate and parked their bikes on the Chilean side. All except Curtis. After all the paper work was done, Curtis was on the wrong side of the crossing gate, which had been closed after our arrival. Poor Curtis was sitting on his bike looking at me. He asked me to open the gate and I replied, “Man of many patches should know by now to always cross border gates when open.” We all had a big laugh and Curtis waited a few minutes before the gate was opened for him.

I have been with Curtis on two Tierra del Fuego (TDF) trips and one where he guided to Deadhorse, Alaska. He is a very successful business man in Dallas Texas. He loves to ride and bulls**t.

On his first TDF trip, he was not prepared for the Patagonia and had a horrible trip. Rain and Wind. But Curtis overcame his fear and did the trip the following year. He was prepared and ready to tackle the Patagonia. On the first day he informed all the other riders that they were going to die. He said it so often that he scared the group to death. He was only joking but it sure at an impact on the group and everyone was prepared to tackle any obstacle. It was a great trip with only a day of rain and a couple of days of wind. So Curtis came back a third year to make sure he had conquered TDF. He had so much fun and had become such an accomplished rider that I would ride with him anytime.

I am forwarding you some pics of Curtis. Of course the pics I am sending are the fun ones I took of him.

-- Arturo Portillo

Debbie and Harrison Christian - Washington (State) USA

2004 BMW R1150GS Adventure

Africa Adventure 2005

About Debbie and Harrison . . .

Greeting from Morton, Washington (state) in the foothills of Mt. Rainier. We are Harrison and Debbie Christian. We have four children and eight grandchildren. We have several businesses and occasionally Harrison still does a little forestry work, his original forte. He lived and logged in Liberia, West Africa for 3 1/2 years.. he left because of a coup.

We love to travel and have been to many countries. This is our first motorcycle adventure and we are very excited. We'll be on a 2004 BMW 1150GS Adventure.

We found out about GlobeRiders from Brendan Ferrer and Wayne Elston at South Sound BMW in Fife, Washington. Do yourself a favor and meet them. It's more like a family than a dealership.

Debbie and Christian

Marlene and Joe Hutt - Michigan USA

2005 BMW R1200GS

Africa Adventure 2005

About Joe . . .

I live near Lake Tahoe in Nevada, moved there two years ago after living in a number of places including Mexico, Texas, California and New York. I'm a retired engineer, age is 58. I have been riding bikes for about 45 years mostly street bikes with an sprinkling of dirt bikes.

I teach road racing with Keigwin's at the Track in northern California and have been racing an SV650 for a few years. I'm currently on the Africa tour and plan to go on the World Tour this coming year.

Roger Kersch - Alabama USA

2002 BMW F650GS Dakar

Africa Adventure 2005

About Roger . . .

Bought my first little bike, a '64 Honda Cub, from my father in '65 with money from delivering the Detroit News and working at the family import auto dealership in Michigan on Saturdays. It was fun, all the neat sports cars, and so was the service and parts manager, who had a cool Honda 305 Super Hawk, Sonny Jezowski. The hook was set.

In the last 40 years I went bike-less for maybe a total of one month. It was Dad's idea (thanx Pop!) to help me get in the Harley-Davidson business in 1991 after he sold the Nissan dealership in Florida in 1985. Needless to say, things worked out well and I sold Rocket Harley-Davidson in Huntsville, Alabama in May 2003 and have been toodling around the globe ever since!

My first passport got its first stamp in Chile in January 2004 on the Tierra del Fuego adventure. Then SE Brazil. The High Andes. Copper Canyon, Mexico. The American continental divide, twice, and a ride down from Alaska with Linda on a new HD V-Rod to Milwaukee for the 100th anniversary of Harley-Davidson. Life is good, and there are so many more places to get stamps in my passport!


Michael Kranefuss - North Carolina USA

2005 BMW R1200GS

Africa Adventure 2005

About Michael . . .

I'm going to be 67 this July and in pretty good health - according to my wife, Immy, at least physically; she sometimes has serious doubts about my mental constitution.  We have two boys and three grand-children and I would have never thought they could be so much fun (the grand-kids). 

I worked for Ford Motor Company for over 25 years - first in Europe and since 1980 here in the U.S. - and always in automobile racing.  That kind of sets the tone for your entire life and as you grow older in this business you'll find it increasingly difficult to tolerate anything less than a 'splendid effort' in most everything you do.  Don't get me wrong I'm not fanatical - it's just the result of a life where you're getting your report card weekly. 

Anyway, I retired from Ford at the end of '93 and moved south to NC to set up my own NASCAR race team which I ran until the end of 2000 and then sold it.  Since then I've tried, seriously, to retire from racing, to enjoy a more normal life - and that has turned out to be quite a difficult task. 

Riding my bike, especially long rides and coast to coast, has helped me enormously to find the time to think and, subsequently, to learn to ease my mind.

I did a couple of rides from CA to NC with the 'Kyle Petty Charity Ride' and last year I did the Lewis & Clark trip from St. Louis to Oregon, solo.  Going with GlobeRiders is sort of a natural next step and I can't wait to get going and meeting y'all.

Ride safely!


Bob Love - California USA

2005 KTM Adventure

World Tour 2004

Africa Adventure 2005

About Bob . . .

(Editors Note: And yet another GlobeRider, Bob, has yet to submit a "bio", or any pictures to go with it.  If any of Bob's family or friends would like to submit a introduction on his behalf, and maybe a compromising picture or two, please feel free to send them to , and I'll make sure they get added to this page <g>.)

Helge Pedersen - Washington USA

2002 BMW R1150GS Adventure

GlobeRiders Founder

World Tour 2000

Iceland Expedition 2001

World Tour 2002

Africa Pre-Run 2002

Africa Adventure 2003

World Tour 2004

Silk Road Pre-Run 2004

Silk Road 2005

Africa Adventure 2005

[You can view Helge's GlobeRiders Biography here.]

Pamela and Steve Smith - Michigan USA

2005 R1200GS

Africa Adventure 2005

About Steve. . .

Biographical data - Steven H. Smith

Currently serving as Chairman of Credential Check Corporation and President of Summit Group Advisors, LLC. Credential Check provides comprehensive pre-employment screening services including criminal, previous employment and education verification, drug screening and integrity testing. Through our Risk Management Division we deliver corporate crime investigations, risk assessments, security program management and workplace violence mitigation in North America. Summit Group Advisors provides long-term, part-time executive support for owners and CEO’s that seek dramatic growth or change.

Previously, I co-founded and served as vice-chairman of a $300 million outsourcing company with 15,000 employees and 100 branch offices across the US. For over 20 years I served as chairman/CEO of the 35th largest security company in the US. I’m a member of the World Presidents’ Organization (WPO) and Chief Executive Officers’ Organization (CEO), and an alum of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO). I’ve also served as an officer, director, and council member for numerous civic and professional organizations including the YMCA (Chairman of the Board), and Crimestoppers, Inc. (Director).

For the last six years, I’ve participated in the President’s Program at the Harvard Business School. I attended the University of Michigan and am Board Certified in Security Management.

Married to my high school sweetheart, my partner-in-life, Pam and I have two adult children, both of whom are independent and self-supporting. Our interests include: International travel, motorcycle touring, classic and sports cars, real-estate development, business biographies, swimming and beach-walking.

One notable experience in my preparation for this trip has to be the off road biking course I took at the Honda facility in Troy, Ohio. Since I was the only student in the course that day my instructor, Tom Burklow, really put me to the test.

At lunchtime, Tom said he wouldn’t be satisfied that I had learned enough until I landed on the ground a few times. He must have been pretty happy, because I found myself flat on my back looking up at the sky no less than three times shortly thereafter.

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