An Interesting Conversation with the Man


I had the unfortunate luck of running into the man (read State Police Officer) on saturday on the way to a favorite trail less then 2 miles from the house. The story goes like this. I live in rural oregon, and ride regularly ride on paved roads to get to trails, as I am surrounded by National Forest. I have on several occasions been stopped or talked to law enforcement while riding, and have never been hasseled. I have even had cops tell me where to find trails. Any ways I had 2 friends up to ride, one rode my xr 600, and the other rode an xr350, which belongs to the friend riding my xr600. Anyways I was leading, riding the road to the trail. When Officer Dick Face comes around the corner stops and waves for me to stop. He immediately goes up to the xr350 ridden by Mike and starts in on the head light being out. Officer DF asks for everyones license. I didnt bring mine so he looks at my friend on my xr600 and says your the only one with a cycle endorsement hands the license back and doesnt talk to him ever again. The Officer DF asks me for my info, and I give it, and am warned if I give false info he will take me to jail. His partner is nice and friendly and older talks about bikes with us, and mentions Stonyford in Nor Cal. After 15 minutes officer DF returns hands a ticket to Mike (xr350) and proceeds to call him my name (Team Oatmeal Pie) for the next 5 minutes during his lecture. When finished I explain that he is calling Mike my name. The officer with mikes license in his hand looks me in the face and says no he's you. I look at mikes ticket and it has half my name and half mikes? ok. I then get my ticket, and I ask him how about a stern warning and let us go, he says no, then explains I am also getting an extra ticket for unlawful use for allowing someone (mike on the xr350) to ride a bike with no headlight, i.e. lack of maintanence (no head light. I try to explain that I dont own the xr350, so how can I be responsible for it? I also mentioned to the Officers that a fellow officer lives down the street and we have no problems. He doesnt care and leaves. It ruined a good day of riding. I will get the license as they didnt seem to care that the bikes didnt have and street legal stuff like turn signals etc, all he seemed to care about was the license and acting like a buffoon.

I suspect I can get out of some of this, for one I cant be responsible for a bike I dont own. Second, he claims we where pulled over for a head light out, but my questions is can you ride legally with the head light off. It could have been off but operational and he wouldnt have known, this might be a weak excuse to pull some one over. Let alone the technicalities, wrong name etc.

Next time should I run? I have a healthy respect for all people, but dont like the bullshit that particular ass was giving out. I was very disapointed with the rude treatment I received. I hate to say it too but the officer really focused on my friend who happens to have long hair. Its very interesting we both graduated from college togather,and have similiar upbringings, middle class, etc. I am a medical rep, selling ultrasound machines, clean cut, etc., and talk to people everyday and am very friendly easy going. Mike the longhair just looks different, and he got hassled more, I literally had to walk over to mike and cop because he was physically intimidating him by standing much to close, like 3-5" from his face and barking orders. I intervened by asking questions and changing his focus to me.

All I can says is I accept the responsibility of riding on roads with out a license and will get one asap. But If I see Officer DF again I will give him the one finger salute.

I think in many states it is a law that motorcycles must have their headlights on.

As far as registration, I agree. My neighbor is a cop and I asked him not too long ago if he knows what is required to make a bike street legal in Colorado. He guessed a few things. Then he admitted he had no clue what the real rules are. All he would care about is whether or not you have registration, a plate and proof of insurance (in Colorado). He told me it's his job to give a ticket if I don't have the paper work. That's all he cares about.

So you could get the required registration and plate, take all the stuff off your bike, and pass the street legal stuff to your friend and still ride without getting a ticket. What a joke! But then so are many of our traffic laws etc.

When I was just out of high school I got a ticket but I kept my mouth shut and was polite when he turned it over to me. I was warned that I was smug and he didn't like that. I guess I should have just been an &%$#@! like he anticipated.

Time haven't changed much eh?

You damn hippies! :)


Team Oatmeal Pie,

It must be close to Halloween... I had "Hunter Dick Face" stop me on the trail yesterday. He was furious that we (5 of us) dirt bikers were on a trail that was (supposedly) closed to motor vehicles for hunting season. Hunter DF proceded to protest that we were going to get tickets if we went any further and he should blow my carburetor off on my bike. He had a rifle over his shoulder but instead pulled a hand gun out of his coat. Then he said how would you like to walk out on foot. Maybe he should shoot me there. This guy was in his 60's and was absolutely out of control! He went on and on about someone taking his kill while he was going to get his truck earlier. Then said some BS about taking license numbers and the ranger impounding bikes. The whole time holding the pistol by his chest and occasionally lifting it a few inches away. He was standing right in front of MY bike looking straight at ME the whole damned time. %@&!!!! All I could say was the trail wasn't marked closed, sorry... Trying to keep calm and not make it worse.

Fortunately Hunter DF stopped venting and put his gun back in his coat. Then turned around and walked back down the trail.

We decided to turn around and try reporting the incident from a cel phone up the trail. Don't expect much to come of it.


It really makes me mad :) that he was with 2 teenage kids that were probably his grandsons. They will come away from this display thinking Granddad is a tough old man. He purposely held the handgun where THEY could not see it. These kids are at a impressionable age. I wonder how this will affect them later.


This messed up our day leaving us back in the limited snow covered areas. At least we came away in one piece!!


The trail was Little Naches River Basin trail #949 in Washington state. The location was about 2 miles up from the Little Naches River. The Rangers office says the trail is open, but the Dept of Fish & Wildlife says it is a green dot trail closed, but to call the RANGERS office to be sure.



Must be close to a full moon :D ,

James Dean

[This message has been edited by James Dean (edited 10-23-2000).]


I too have been stopped by a crazy with a hand gun. Its awfully intimidating, mine didnt want me to ride a gas line near his house. I frequently ride alone, I know its bad, but dont have much choice if I want to ride. Subsequentaly I avoid others in the woods, as I dont want to be shot.

I have a helmet cam, and almost set it up last saturday, It would have been nice to record the whole exchange on video.

As a warning to all, beware, the man can and will do anything he wants, Second, it is hunting season and the insane can legally roam the woods, under the influence of alcohol, drugs, and misinformation all the while armed to the teeth looking to kill anything. Oh some of you can relate to this too, watching out for our farmers of the northwest woods. 2 Weed farmers, where recently arrested in connection with a dead body found by a boy scout troop near my fav., trail. And for some odd reason I always thought I was the danger to myself when dirt biking.


What a bummer, but you will always run into guys like that. I think Freud called it "cycle envy", the fact that we have too much fun on our WR's, etc.

Anyway, the USFS has been writing more tickets lately in the Daniel Boone Natl Forest in KY, so my and my ridin' buds went ahead and licensed 2 WR's 1 XR400 and 1 YZ250. We carry all paperwork etc in our fanny packs, Sometimes I think it kind of pisses 'em off when they see we have it all together. My advice is to go ahead and get everything together so you will have peace of mind when connecting your trails, etc.

Good Luck

James, that is messed up! Sounds like you handled it great though. Anytime a nutball pulls a gun like that, it has to be nerve racking. Hopefully that crazy old coot will get what is coming to him.

TOP, I've been stopped many times in CO and usually they only want to see the "M" on my license and proof of insurance. They are usually cool. Sounds like you got a cop who just got dumped by his beeaaacchh and was in a foul mood.

[This message has been edited by Dougie (edited 10-24-2000).]

My advice:

Get your bike street legal, it's pretty easy in many states.(search the archives for details)

Always carry your paperwork! Tickets are too expensive! Why give them any more money.

Always ride with your lights on, it makes you look legal...even if you aren't.

Cops don't know what is legal and what isn't, believe me on this one. If you look legal(headlight, taillight, license plate) and have paperwork you are home free with most cops.

Friends and I have been riding on the street for 10 years with dirt bikes, sometimes fully legal, sometimes only looking legal. I have been stopped only twice. None of us have ever got a ticket(knock on wood).


I had a run in on a back road in NH. A state trooper pointed me over. He looked at my plate and rambled on about how he used to have a 250 honda. Said have a nice day and split. I was uninspected, no brake light (boken switch) no horn and a bicycle rear view mirror. I dont think I could deal with all the bull##$@ that you have to in other states. I love NH!!!!

[This message has been edited by mike68 (edited 10-24-2000).]

Hartman, get back to work.


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