Motorcycle Curious? Thanks to Can-Am, I Learned to Ride

Curious about learning to ride a motorcycle, but worried about the complexities of two-wheeling? We learned, on 3-wheelers, with Can-Am on International Female Ride Day.

If You Are One Of Those That Skip To The End Of The Story, It Was Magnificent. Photo: Drew Ruiz
If you are one of those that skip to the end of the story, it was magnificent. Photo: Drew Ruiz

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If you are one of those that skip to the end of the story, it was magnificent. Photo: Drew Ruiz

This is a great way to learn to ride a motorcycle: With 3 wheels, and without fear.

When was the last time you tried something new that tested your limits and reset your expectations? This is the exact experience that I had riding motorcycles from Can-Am, the Ryker Sport and Spyder 3, at International Female Ride Day in Temecula, California.

Founded by Motoress’ Vicki Grey, International Female Ride Day is about encouraging women to ‘Just Ride’ and partake in the journey. It’s also about awareness and helping others to get the pleasure of this fun, safe space to enjoy getting out there and seeing the world available to them.

Related: see what happens with 40 badass ladies at this roadeo

They Grow Up, But Memories Of Their Childhood Last Forever
They grow up, but memories of their childhood last forever. Photo: Teia Collier

Why Not Me?

I had seen the three-wheel adventure vehicles on the road. But I’m mom of three on a mission to enjoy this tine in my life, build a business, raise some productive people and uplift my community. Motorcycle riding didn’t necessarily fit into my life. The big wheels and grumbly growls caught my eye, but had always been filed into the ‘one-day-when’ folder.

I thought that motorcycle riding was slightly out of my reach. It seemed like such an amazingly badass way to experience the world without the shelter of cover and amongst the elements of life while navigating the whims of other humans on the road. A complete newbie to riding, is it any wonder that when the opportunity to wander into the powersports adventure arose, I braved up and said, ‘Yes.’

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On the road, in a brand-new way, Teia Collier on the Ryker Sport motorcycle. Photo: Drew Ruiz for Can-Am

Delving into the Unknown

In the leadup time, I began to daydream about the experience and dig my teeth into researching the vehicles that we would test, the Can-Am Ryker Sport and Can-Am Spyder F3. On their site and social media, I saw the three-wheeled touring motorcycles with a variety of riders living their best lives — right now.

I found scenic shots of beautiful roads and snaps of adventures in progress that most likely gifted their riders with the best made memories. I saw the stats of vehicles that told me they held enough power to be considered a vehicle and need a license and training, but it looked simple enough that I could do it… with some assistance. I felt my excitement building. I felt my curiosity growing, and luckily, it was enough to check the nervous, tingles of fear that had begun to set in.

Related: How a newbie overcame her fears at the Rebelle Rally  

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Getting the morning started and meeting the Women of On Road. Image: Drew Ruiz

Shall we Begin?

It was a cool, but clear morning when we arrived at Temecula Motorsports for gearing up and training. I was greeted by the Can-Am team, other adventure sports enthusiasts, fellow journalists and some of the gracious Women of Can-Am On-Road as laughter floated through the air and the warm buzz of conversation soothed my nerves.

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Information and training are the best combatants to nerves. Image: Drew Ruiz

Daunted by the ideas swirling in my mind, like an episode of Clarissa Explains It All, I listened to our instructor, took full advantage of the practice time and soaked up stories from more experienced riders. I learned about paying attention to my surroundings, hand signals, how to operate the vehicle, staying with my group, about giggling with my helmet on, about riding safely alone, and how to properly wear my gloves.

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A taste of the open road. Image: Drew Ruiz

The more I absorbed, the more comfortable I became, and became familiar with the vehicles, the more my nerves calmed, and the thrill of the ride began to set it. I began to settle into the experience and feel it for what it is… a vacation on wheels.

Found My Smile Along The Way. Image: Drew Ruiz

Found my smile along the way. Image: Drew Ruiz

There’s nothing like it.

The roads of Southern California opened up like a dream. The scent of orange blossom and blooming cacti on the breeze. Fellow motorists waved and greeted us as we passed by. There is a visceral engagement between you, the vehicle and the road. It’s heady and addictive. It’s raw, pure pleasure that taps into those senses that get dulled sitting behind a computer screen.

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Breathing Space. Community. Nothing Like It. Image: Drew Ruiz

I also see so much more clearly why people fall in love with ATVs and seek out the opportunity to use their toys whenever possible. More than that, over the course of 150 miles, I made friends, learned more about me than I would have guessed and giggled like a teenager at a candy shop.

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Motorcycle Curious? Thanks to Can-Am, I Learned to Ride 19

Can You DO It?

Yes. As a complete newbie that has driven cars and ridden horses, but nothing in the powersports realm, I was slightly terrified, but kind of in awe of those that could. I found that if you can drive an automatic transmission vehicle, you can ride a touring motorcycle.

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Yes, you can. Teia Collier on Can-Am ATV. Image: Drew Ruiz

Is it too heavy to manage?

No, I’m a petite woman, and both the Ryker and Spyder were easy for me to manage with no assistance. Also, since the vehicle has three wheels, the bike is very stable, making it a great option for newbies and those who desire a more stable vehicle.

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But really? Would you do it again?

Absolutely. Hands-down, yes.

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Documenting the moment and counting myself as a woman on-road. Image: Drew Ruiz

Here’s what to know. The three wheels are stabilizing – eliminating the fear of tipping over. The straddle seat is more comfortable than a bicycle and more solid than a tricycle. The engines are powerful with enough pep and get-up-and-go that you feel safe picking up some speed to match traffic on the highway. And because it’s no fun to go fast if you can’t stop when you want to, I was delighted to find that braking is uncomplicated and efficient. Just like any other sport, with practice you will get better and this one gives you the comfort of control, as well.

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Motorcycle Curious? Thanks to Can-Am, I Learned to Ride 21

For more information on Can-Am, visit here.

Good things to know:

Who is Can-Am?

Can-Am is a Canadian-based company that produces motorized off-road motorcycles and a variety of open-air terrain vehicles. Founded in 1972, Can-Am has become a global leader in the ATV, Side-by-Side and powersports space. Designed for riders and thrill-seekers aged 5 to 95, interest in the adventure vehicles picked up speed during the pandemic and hasn’t let up since.

Can-Am'S Atvs

Can-Am’s ATVs. Photo: Can-Am

ATV means All-Terrain Vehicle

An ATV is an open-air off-road, one or two passenger, three or 4-wheeled vehicle that can be street legal vehicle in some places, but often with restrictions. It may have a saddle for ‘straddle seating’, and is known for its ability to navigate a variety of terrains, often where Jeeps and other off-road vehicles can’t go. It typically has a handlebar or yoke steering rather than a traditional steering wheel found on a car.

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Don’t Skip the Protective Gear

Since the vehicle doesn’t come with an enclosed cabin, riders should wear clothing that covers and protects your head, arms, legs and body. A helmet, gloves, boots and long pants are advised.

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How Much Do These Cost?

The typical range for ATVs just under $5k to over $30k, depending on the features, range and build. The ones that I tested for this ride were the Ryker Sport and Spyder 3. The Ryker Sport is leaner and lighter. I found it to be more nimble and simpler to use. The Spyder 3 felt luxurious with a brawnier body, more bells and whistles, a broader seat and more storage space. You can learn more by visiting here.

Disclosure: I was a guest of Can-AM for this test drive. Travel and accommodations were provided but all opinions are my own.

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Teia Collier is a mother of three, educator, social journalist, advocate for women’s and children’s issues and lover of... More about Teia Collier

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