Story by Harley White | Photographed by Deb Peterson and Harley White. M! Aug/Sep 2011.
Motorcycle mamas have been given a bad rap. Often portrayed as being crass, unkempt and scary, female riders seem to be on the outskirts of society. After diving into a few motorcycle rallies and events, I met women who completely shattered this mistaken stereotype. I soon found out that there was more to these women than leather, bandanas, and boots.
I found biker babes in all different places. Some women, like Jill Tangney, I met at the Iron Indian Rally, an annual Indian motorcycle rally held at Indian Point in Branson, Missouri. Others I met through friends or family.
One woman, Doris Love, I met through my grandmother. My grandmother had recently been to a dinner party where she met Doris, who rides a Harley Davidson.
Going to these different motorcycle rallies and events, I had no idea what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised. The motorcycle mamas I met were brilliant, funny, and beautiful. Many of them were mothers, wives, career women, and active community members.
These women do not ride just to ride. They ride because it allows them to experience something that is unlike anything else. Each woman finds something different in motorcycle riding. These women find a kind of freedom, family, and beauty that can only be found through riding. Riding also allows them a chance to focus on themselves in a world that is demanding and constantly pulling them in a thousand different directions.
Motorcycles and riding have always fascinated me, and although I was not named after a motorcycle, I have always felt that I was destined to ride at some point in my life. After meeting these women I was even more inspired to jump on a motorcycle and take off into the sunset.
These women are like every other woman; they just ride motorcycles. The bikes they ride do not define who they are; the bikes add a little something marvelous to their personas.
Read about some fabulous motorcycle mamas:
And be sure to check out our motorcycle mama gallery.