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Author Topic: The Search for Donald Masters  (Read 1045 times)

t120rbullet

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The Search for Donald Masters
« on: September 16, 2009, 10:12:46 PM »
I don't know if any of you have been following this,

http://www.st-owners.com/forums/showthread.php?t=72221

It's on a bunch of different forums that I'm on. Living proof that bikers are good folk on a whole.

CJ
1999 Enfield 500 Black Deluxe "Silver"
2012 Concours 14 (no name yet)
2013 Royal Star Venture S  "Jelly Roll"

Cabo Cruz

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2009, 02:24:58 AM »
"Living proof that bikers are good folk on a whole."  t120rbullet

Amen, Br. CJ...!!!
Long live the Bullets and those who ride them!

Keep the shiny side up, the boots on the pegs and best REgards,

Papa Juan

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BIKE:   2004 Royal Enfield Sixty-5
NAME: Perla

Geirskogul

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2009, 05:56:52 AM »
I was in the area, and searched the roads and backroads (in my car, sorry I'm not taking some of those roads on an Enfield) of the first two hours out of Orofino on his "planned trip" before they reported him on a traffic cam later on.  Didn't see nuthin, but something to hopefully helpfully do while in the area.

I come from Lewiston, just a short ride from Orofino, where he started.  Hope it ends well.
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LJRead

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2009, 08:41:53 PM »
CJ,

I carefully read through the link you gave regarding the search for Donald Masters, and it seems that by now hopes are beginning to fade.  Incredible to me that someone could just disappear like that.  If you, as you continue following this, see any resolution of it, I'm sure we on this forum would appreciate learning of it.  I don't follow other biking forums.

Thanks for providing the link, and yes there are a lot of very good and concerned bike owners.
Lawrence J. Read
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2002 Machismo, 2003 RE rickshaw with Thunderbird base

t120rbullet

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2009, 09:28:57 PM »
CJ,
I carefully read through the link you gave regarding the search for Donald Masters, and it seems that by now hopes are beginning to fade.  Incredible to me that someone could just disappear like that. 

Whats pathetic is that outside the motorcycle forums there was no support at all for more than 2 weeks. As they near the 3rd week now law enforcement is starting to get involved.

As far as people just disappearing like that,
I was in central Colorado a numbers back and when my old HD made it to the top of a mountain pass it went clank-clank and that was it. I coasted about 10 miles down the other side of the mountain to a campground.
I was talking to the kid whose parents owned the campground and while riding his horse around the mountains behind their campground he found a airplane that had gone missing 15 yrs earlier with 3 skeletons in it.
In basically what was his backyard.

So as they move up to 3 weeks the chances of finding him alive grow smaller. By the time the "professional" search teams get out the snow will probably be on the ground.

Whatever happens I wish Don and his family the best.
CJ


1999 Enfield 500 Black Deluxe "Silver"
2012 Concours 14 (no name yet)
2013 Royal Star Venture S  "Jelly Roll"

LJRead

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2009, 10:54:14 PM »
Whats pathetic is that outside the motorcycle forums there was no support at all for more than 2 weeks. As they near the 3rd week now law enforcement is starting to get involved.

As far as people just disappearing like that,
I was in central Colorado a numbers back and when my old HD made it to the top of a mountain pass it went clank-clank and that was it. I coasted about 10 miles down the other side of the mountain to a campground.
I was talking to the kid whose parents owned the campground and while riding his horse around the mountains behind their campground he found a airplane that had gone missing 15 yrs earlier with 3 skeletons in it.
In basically what was his backyard.

So as they move up to 3 weeks the chances of finding him alive grow smaller. By the time the "professional" search teams get out the snow will probably be on the ground.

Whatever happens I wish Don and his family the best.
CJ




It shows just how uninhabited parts of the U.S. are.  Real cowboy and Indian country and it hasn't at all changed, much of it, that is. Also shows a need to keep others aware of where we are going, if doing so alone.
Lawrence J. Read
Vava'u
Tonga Islands
South Pacific

2002 Machismo, 2003 RE rickshaw with Thunderbird base

LJRead

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2009, 03:48:39 AM »
Just read the sad news on the link given above that Donald was found at a crash site about where he was thought to have gone.  It was into a drainage ditch and heavy bush., after a 150 foot bank.  His body and bike were found by elk hunters out tracking an elk.

So many kind people, so much time spent, but finally closure.

Well, I guess you could say he went out with his boots on, not the worst thing to happen.

RIP Donald Masters
Lawrence J. Read
Vava'u
Tonga Islands
South Pacific

2002 Machismo, 2003 RE rickshaw with Thunderbird base

Cabo Cruz

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2009, 04:16:47 AM »
Br. Donald Masters, RIP
Long live the Bullets and those who ride them!

Keep the shiny side up, the boots on the pegs and best REgards,

Papa Juan

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r80rt

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2009, 11:43:39 AM »
I'm sorry to hear the sad news.
On the eighth day God created the C5, and it was better looking than anything on the planet.
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whitey

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2009, 03:08:33 PM »
Very sad news indeed R.I.P.

StephenCB

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #10 on: September 25, 2009, 06:30:25 PM »
Very sad  :'(  agreed.

However, reading through the 21 page thread (following it from when the link was originally posted) renewed my faith in man's humanity to man.

LJRead

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #11 on: September 25, 2009, 07:09:08 PM »
I suppose by now it would not be in bad taste to have a look at the situation as it apparently happened.  At the end of the thread cited above two of the forum members actually drove to the site and commented that it was a rather deceptive curve that was at least part of the problem in that, on approach, it seemed like an ordinary sweeping curve that could be taken with some speed, then it turned a bit dicey at the point Masters went off the road, and this may have been the problem.  He apparently entered the curve at speed, thinking it to be a normal curve and it wasn't.

My personal opinion is that people are riding these Sports Tourer and fast cruiser types of bikes just to darned fast.  In driver's training, our instructor was continually emphasizing the problems associated with over driving one's headlights, or out pacing one's brakes in their ability to bring a reasonable stop.  I would extend this to over driving these bikes' abilities themselves, as well as the reaction reflex abilities of the driver.  They stick on these rather huge engines, make them feel like riding in a lounge chair with no feeling of speed, and then of course these types of accidents will occur -  bound to.

These bikes are being driven up close to 100 mph routinely.  80 to 90 mph is really nothing to these bikes - at which speeds they will seem to be just limping along.  But think of it - when even the slightest miss step occurs, death is inevitable.  It is like going to terminal velocity (120 mph) when sky diving and having one's parachute fail to open.  

Again, my feeling is that the speeds our Enfields are made for, in the 50 mph range, is plenty fast enough, and, if one is dressed properly (helmet included) one has a good chance of survival.  Go up to double that speed, and life become a very fragile thing.

It is a very sad thing that has happened to a very fine person.  But perhaps it is good to take a look at the root causes so that Mr. Masters will not have died in vain.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2009, 07:25:29 PM by LJRead »
Lawrence J. Read
Vava'u
Tonga Islands
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2002 Machismo, 2003 RE rickshaw with Thunderbird base

Vince

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #12 on: September 25, 2009, 08:39:21 PM »
     Larry, I have been riding since 1969. I have been in the industry full time since 1974. Riding over one's head is nothing new. Heck, Lawrence of Arabia did it! Even with the advent of really fast bikes such as the Ninja and GSXR, the overall trend of motorcycle fatalities and injuries was downward . The modern crop of bikes in all genres, from sport to touring to cruising, handle much better then bikes ever did in the past. This factor combined with better licensing and training drove this trend.
     In the late 90's, however, the trend started upward again with the advent of new and returning riders. Many of these riders bought for economy or fun and had the income and credit to fulfill their desires, but relied on rusty skills or a buddies teachings for riding technique. It is approaching a level that is feeding the legislation monster. "How can we prevent the carnage?" Unfortunately you can't legislate stupidity or inattention or testosterone. No matter what you do with technology or safety features or power or speed restrictions, people will find ways to hurt themselves.
     Donald Masters may have been tired or distracted. A deer could have jumped out in front of him. There could have been gravel on the road. I have had customers that suffered heart attacks and epileptic seizures while riding. Just last week one of my customers  crashed trying to avoid rear-ending the car in front. This guy has been riding for over 40 years! There was a pretty girl walking on the side of the road. He tore his eyes from her just in time to see the car stopped in front of him.
     Until we figure out a way for people to use "common sense", and legislate away all potential danger,  there is no way to avoid the type of tragedy suffered by Donald Masters.

LJRead

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Re: The Search for Donald Masters
« Reply #13 on: September 25, 2009, 10:06:37 PM »
While you are quite right about all this, Vince, still it seems that the primary 'danger' factor (other than rider skills)is speed, and survivability means moderate speeds.  You make the point that a number of factors could have been involved in Masters' crash, and I think that is the point - there are so many factors that could be involved in causing a crash, but the crash itself is far more likely with immoderate speed, and having crashed, survivability is far less likely too.  With our cranky old British born bikes, excessive speed is far less likely because even going at reduced speeds, the bike itself will allow you to know how fast you are going.  If I go 50 mph, which is maximum for me (40 is more likely for me) I can feel that I am really moving.  It is very noticeable. 

A corollary is the rental car I once drove from California to New Mexico.  Prior to that drive, my vehicles had all been trucks and four wheelers, and all sort of clunked along.  But there I was cruising on the straight and narrow when I happened to look at my speed and saw that I was effortlessly cruising at about 80.  I believe it would be the same with some of these tour bikes.

Well, morality and common sense can't be legislated in, but I, for one, will much more appreciate a bike that lets me know when I am exceeding my own, and its own, limits!
Lawrence J. Read
Vava'u
Tonga Islands
South Pacific

2002 Machismo, 2003 RE rickshaw with Thunderbird base