CK I left my heart in San Francisco to split my time between San Diego and Mulege, Baja California. I miss the redwood forests and adventure travel writing community in SF, but the warm water in SD and its proximity to Baja keep me here. I visit the Bay Area a lot!
SA What or who inspired you to ride a motorcycle?
CK I starting riding seriously when I was 14, inspired by a desire to get away by myself! It worked and I still do though I love traveling with my sweetheart Jonathan and many friends from around the world.
SA What bike(s) do you own?
CK KTM 350 EXC, KLR 650, BMW R100GS, KTM 950 SuperMoto, Ural sidecar, 74 BMW R75 custom GS/Scrambler bike for the zombie apocalypse.
SA Are you a part of a women’s riding group? If so, which one(s)?
CK I’m not a part of a women’s riding group per se, no. I’m mostly a solo traveler, but when you ride solo you’re never alone.
SA Where is your favorite ride and why?
CK I have so many favorite rides. Right now I’m exploring Baja’s rugged backcountry near my place in Mulege, so it’s my new favorite. But I loved riding Albania, Montenegro, Croatia. Also SF Bay Area through wine country to Yosemite. And Utah’s state park routes, the back ways in. And Morocco was fantastic, too. It’s hard to choose!
SA Why do you ride or want to ride on 2-wheels?
CK I learned to drive and ride early and, as an introvert, it’s always been a great way to get away and re-charge. I was the only solo women rider on the road, it seemed, for so many years, but now there are lots of us, yay! And so I ride for connection and camaraderie now, as well.
SA Have you always been driven to explore adventurous activities?
CK Yes, I’ve been an adventure traveler for many years, exploring Europe and Africa by bicycle, and then moving into motorcycling because editors were more fascinated by that and wanted stories about it.
SA What would you like to see more of when it comes to the women’s riding world?
CK I’d like to see women wrenching their own bikes. The fear of breaking down and not knowing what to do stops many women from riding, or even driving, far away from their home area. It’s not difficult, it’s just not been taught. I’d like to see that change.
SA What gets you out of bed in the morning?
CK The water calls me each morning, either for a walk or jog on the beach or, when I’m in Baja, paddle boarding to the near islands, saying hi to the dolphins and the whale sharks.
SA If you could ride anywhere next year, where would it be and why?
CK I’m going to continue to explore Baja in the coming year, Stay tuned for custom maps!
SA Do you personally operate or work at a women-owned/operated moto-related website, blog, or business that you’d like to tell folks about?
CK My Motorcycle Misadventures website has been running since 1995. It’s actually the oldest travel blog on the internet! You can find it at CarlaKing.com
SA What was your worst day on a motorcycle?
CK There are no bad days on a motorcycle. But I hit a dog in India and went down. It was in the days before textile gear and it was too hot to wear leathers, so I was just wearing jeans. I got a concussion and my kneecap came out through my skin and re-entered, creating a big gash. Some Indian Christian missionaries were behind me when it happened. They loaded me in their van (I bled all over their white saris) and took me to a clinic, and one of the rode my bike to a repair shop, so we both got fixed up. I rode to a beach for a week’s recovery and discovered Ayurveda. Unlucky me. Lucky me.
SA Favorite food?
CK Tofu (haha but really, sort of). Chocolate. Coffee. But anything that makes me feel healthy. Food is medicine.
SA What age did you learn to ride a motorcycle?
CK I don’t remember learning how to drive or ride things. I grew up in a rural area and it seems that we kids were always on wheels of some sort. I started riding seriously at 14.
SA Funniest thing that ever happened to you while on a ride?
CK I was riding in China and picked up a hitch-hiker. I wrote a story about it, you can read it here http://bit.ly/29uFgP3
SA Favorite post-ride beverage?
SA Name 3 immediate things you would like to accomplish in the world of riding.
CK 1. Mapping Baja’s back roads, 2. Customizing my Ural with a rack for my paddleboard, and 3. Finishing my book about riding solo in China.
SA Name 3 long-term things you would like to accomplish in the world of riding.
CK 1. Never stop exploring 2. Keep writing about it on the web and in books
3. Inspire as many people as possible to explore outside their comfort zone.