I am here in Stugis. Probably one of the largest turnout in the past 12 years. Almost no masks, no rules, no social distancing, and no one appears to be sick. And the best thing is, more Indian Motorcycles than ever before. Like 10X more than last year. Way more new Indians than new Harleys.
Hope you are having a good trip! What a nice change to have no restrictions. I just noticed that 3littleindians, our token ANTIFA member has changed his forum name to ".3578" just in case he attempts to stay on this forum. I looked long and hard from him riding his KTM 1190 Adventure bike or his electric bicycle at Sturgis with no luck. I even brought a large roll of duct tape for him. If he returns, whatever he says, CONSIDER THE SOURCE. I'm still waiting for anyone I know personally to come down with Covid from Sturgis and die in a hospital. Interesting how many of the states with the most lock downs have the highest death rates. Isn't it interesting how the media does not report a single case of Covid from protests, riots and looting (the favorite past time of the radical left). So I would assume that a 250,000 to 500,000 attended biker rally would be equally immune to the virus. There goes the social distancing theory. I'm sure if there is a single case to be reported, it will be on the news 24/7 in retaliation of Trump. BTW, for all who didn't attend, at least 50% of all the clothing vendors were selling shirts and hats that were for Trump 2020. ZERO for Biden. I just thought I'd throw that in to piss off all the snowflakes. LolJulie and I be rolling up there on Friday.
What rally were you at? I have gone the last 4 years in a row without a "break" year due to business obligations. I went to JP Cycles last Sunday morning to get one accessory put on and there were 20 motorcycles lined up before me before they were even open. I spent a lot less time on Main St. And Lazelle this year because I wasn't really looking for a new bike (no new releases due to Covid), but instead spent much more time riding. Hill City and Deadwood were more packed than ever. Granted, I got there early in the rally, knowing that the vendors tend to run out of a lot of the good stuff half way through the rally. I ate during off hours to try to avoid long wait times. Restaurant reservations were full on line, and the popular places I am used to going were packed. The hotel I stayed at in Rapid City had at least 4X more bikes in the parking lot as of last Sunday as normal. Again, getting there early made it less stressful. I always do at least a 5 state run of 3000 to 4400 miles on my summer trip, so downtown Sturgis is just a mid-trip break where we can unload, wash clothes, and not be in a hurry. There are plenty of places to enjoy on the way there and back that equal the quality of the Black Hills. Unfortunately some of the states this year were Covid crazed, like they were bitten by the Zombie virus and limited the planned routes we would have liked to take.We enjoyed it again. Attendance being a bit lower made for no lines at stop signs or lights or to get in anywhere. It was a bit weird not seeing as many bikes, however. Still, great rally
Just a quick response to your not having anything installed 1500 miles from home: many of us go to either the Sturgis town rally or Rapid City HD vendor areas specifically to get the labor done. You should rethink this. At Stugis, many if not most of the vendors install the accessories you buy for free or for a nominal charge that just covers their labor. At home you are paying between $95-$130 per hour at book shop rate for installation of something that there is a good chance the local dealer mechanic has never seen or installed before. At Stugis you are getting mechanics that have installed many, many of the accessories, know all the right tools, routing of wiring, and fit fix issues that make the product work before you ride away. I would trust a light mfgr, exhaust mfgr.We were at the same one...
My comments are based on riding the area from Monday through Thursday, heading home on Friday of the rally. We didn't have to wait at any stop lights more than just the normal light changing times, stop signs or really anywhere we went to eat at night. The longest we waited was 15 minutes at Longhorn at 1930 Monday evening. Gas stops were "normal" and the traffic at the various, popular stops/rides was not bad. There were bikes everywhere as you would expect at a rally but traffic was not an issue as it was in 2017, 2015 and 2013. As for wait times at shops for installing equipment/service, I learned many years ago not to do any maintenance or installs 1,500 miles away from home knowing I had to trust someone I never saw before install something that may/may not cause issues on the trip home. As you stated, the wait times for such things is bad, also. I use the rally for seeing new stuff and planning the purchase when I get home.
Preliminary numbers are just shy of 366,000 folks, down almost 8% from last year. Spending was up so that's good for the vendors.
We did venture out to FTS late Thursday just to see the new place. It's WAY out of town but seemed to be hopping. The parking lot was filled but not full as it seemed with all the other venues where we parked over the week. We try to park at the Presbyterian church on Lasalle and walk the two blocks to main street. The Lion's club normally watches the bikes and we get to see old friends each time we park. They also have a pancake breakfast each day of the rally. While they still had the breakfast, the Lion's club folks were not there. The lot was empty except for one or two cars and our two bikes. I'm basing my observations and comments on things like that.
Also went through Devil's Tower and Hulett Thursday. There were bikes but no traffic issues rolling around the tower or going through Hulett. The worst traffic jam of the entire week was Tuesday on 16A coming back through the forest to Keystone. We were surrounded by a herd of about 100 or more buffalo....we did get some great pictures of that experience...
Vendors were in full force and Trump kiosks were EVERYWHERE. I did not see any kiosks for the Democratic candidate. Not taking sides on this issue, just an observation.
Overall, it was a great rally for us.