Roads and highways are designed for machines not people. Maybe that's why often feel out of place stopped alongside one taking pictures or exploring the areas most people rush by. Count up all the miles of roads and that's a lot of ground that has been delegated to invisibility beyond the general view.
I've passed the road cut in the picture above countless times in a car but never stopped to really look at it. It's easy to stop on the Vespa and it never feels inconvenient no matter how many times I stop to look at a plant, rock, or view. It's one of the strengths of a small scooter. In the car all the details are filtered away by speed and separation from the road. I've wondered if the same might be true if I were riding a bigger scooter or motorcycle---would I be seduced into the same rapid pace as a car? Judging by the other riders I see the answer would be yes.
My friend Frank Armstrong believes you need to be traveling no faster than 35 MPH to see anything photographically. (Correct me if I have this wrong Frank). I have found that to be true and when I used to explore in my truck it was painful to crawl along roads at 25 MPH. It just felt wrong. On the Vespa it feels just fine.
So I'm not sure how versatile and useful a motorcycle would be to me for the kind of riding experience I seek. Hard to imagine feeling comfortable and satisfied astride a Triumph Scrambler or BMW 1200 GS Adventure all afternoon at 35 MPH. If some manufacturer what's me to test the theory with an extended loan I'll experiment. Maybe I'm wrong.
I stopped again along Route 322 just to look at the road wind over the hill. How often do I stop in the truck?
I didn't have any destination in mind on this ride and just kept wandering along turning and stopping as the whim hit me. Heading toward Black Moshannon State Park I passed Hannah Furnace Road.
A quick U-turn and off I go down a road that I hadn't been on before. Asphalt turns to gravel and I have the chance to practice my skills a bit more until I am comfortable running along at 30 MPH without feeling like the scooter is going down at any moment.
After a few stops to look at plants and birds I rode on until joining US 322 again and headed home. Only traveled about 70 miles but it was a nice, relaxed ride...