EagleRider, a purveyor of motorcycle tours and rentals both here and abroad, is successful for good reason – because the cups of their customers runneth over with fun and adventure while riding motorcycles as well as when the bikes are stationary. A recent three-day jaunt with the tour company was but a taste of their longer escapades, and we left hungry for more. Aboard the motorcycles, we twisted our way over mountains and pounded out miles of straight, horizon-reaching desert vastness. When off the bikes we ate and drank with gluttonous zeal, gambled, got massaged, and when the riding continued, it included not just motorcycles but also a boat as well as a helicopter.

EagleRider tours road signsAs much as the idea of riding a BMW over the Alps or attending the Isle of Man races is a dream vacation for many American motorcyclists, so too is the notion for Europeans of piloting a Harley-Davidson across the USA following the most famous of American roads, Route 66. EagleRider claims more than 80% of motorcyclists participating in the company’s Route 66 guided tour from Chicago to Los Angeles are foreign-born bikers. Euros are as good as greenbacks when it comes to the bottom line, but I get the notion EagleRider would like to see more participation from locals. The idea may be derived from EagleRider’s recent press junket where Motorcycle.com was in attendance with a handful of non-endemic media including the likes of Playboy, Men’s Health and Marie Claire magazines, or it could be coincidence, but I think not. And I’m inclined to agree that spending thousands of dollars extra traveling to far-flung places is oftentimes unnecessary if you haven’t explored your own backyard, especially when there’s likely to be an EagleRider location close by.

EagleRider tours american west

To truly appreciate the American Southwest, is should be experienced aboard a motorcycle (except for in July and August).

From full-blown guided tours to simply renting a motorcycle for your own purposes, EagleRider boasts a variety of ways in which to tour the country aboard two wheels, each with its own accompaniment of benefits. Ours was of the guided tour variety which includes guides, preplanned routes, a support van, bike rental and moto-friendly places to bunk for the night. It’s easy getting used to the kind of pampering EagleRider’s guided tours provide, especially when on vacation, because the onus is on EagleRider to shoulder the burden of traveling details, leaving its participants with nothing more to do than ride motorcycles, eat, drink, and be merry.

EagleRider Colorado River boat tours

In addition to boat tours of the Colorado River, Pirate Cove Resort offers beachfront cabins, boat rentals, off-road riding, a zipline, and other extra-curricular activities. From what I could tell, it seems like a fun place to spend a weekend.

Our truncated route was meant to highlight the best aspects of EagleRider’s longer guided tours and included these SoCal highlights: Riding through the mountain town of Idyllwild via the Palms-to-Pines Scenic Byway on our way to the desert oasis of Palm Springs on day one; The arid, high desert of Joshua Tree State Park en route to Laughlin, Nevada, with a stop along the way at Pirate Cove Resort and Marina for a boat tour of the Colorado River on day two; Traversing a section of The Mother Road, stopping in touristy Oatman, Arizona, then on to Hoover Dam and ending in Las Vegas – but not before a Papillon Helicopter ride for a bird’s-eye view of Hoover Dam, Lake Mead and the west end of the Grand Canyon – on day three.

EagleRider tours Hoover dam

Ever see Hoover Dam or the Grand Canyon from a helicopter? On many of EagleRider’s guided Southwestern tours, this optional view from above is on the menu. Anything involving a helicopter ride is worth the price of admission and ticket prices for Papillon begin at a very reasonable $224.

At the end of each day’s ride, arriving at our hotel we’re greeted by our luggage – removing from the traveling equation the daily chore of re-packing the bike other than what is needed for changes in weather. As previously mentioned, the white-glove treatment may feel somewhat foreign to the independent, do-it-yourself, rugged motorcyclist, but in less than a day, you’ll appreciate the service. And EagleRider’s professionalism is never more apparent than with its tour guides.

EagleRider tours Steve Feather

Steve Feather (pictured giving Playboy Jr. Editor Cole Sadler a free ride) is a retired firefighter, EagleRider tour guide and all-around good guy emblematic of the personable treatment you can expect to receive from all the EagleRider folk.

All of EagleRider’s tour guides are accomplished, skilled motorcyclists, but, more importantly, they’re affable people who obviously enjoy the job. They’re knowledgable too, able to answer most questions you throw their way about the area you’re in or the road you’re on. They are tasked with maintaining a schedule, and allow ample time during scenic rest stops to absorb the experience, but don’t dawdle when it’s time to saddle-up or you may incur a hurry-up tone of voice. Safety is, undoubtedly, a concern and the tour guides maintain safe riding practices. However, motorcycling is dangerous by nature and there’s no fixing stupid, so be courteous, play by their rules, and your tour experience will be one to remember.

At Guy Fieri’s El Burro Burracho (drunken donkey) inside Harrah’s in Laughlin, NV, Trash Can Nachos are an appetizer favorite. Gigantic, two-hands-necessary Pineapple Habanero Margarita is an excellent pairing. If not obvious, this is homage to the eat, drink, be merry part of the EagleRider experience.

At Guy Fieri’s El Burro Burracho (drunken donkey) inside Harrah’s in Laughlin, NV, Trash Can Nachos are an appetizer favorite. Gigantic, two-hands-necessary Pineapple Habanero Margarita is an excellent pairing. If not obvious, this is an homage to the eat, drink, be merry part of the EagleRider experience.

Which leads us to the people you’ll meet while on tour. We’ve already established that a lot of foreigners travel a long way to take an even longer motorcycle ride. So, chances are good you’ll meet a nice German couple or some residents from other parts of the world. Regardless of where people call home, after your time together on the road, everyone returns home with a few new friends for life. From what I was told, many groups get together on an annual basis to partake in another EagleRider tour, oftentimes including the same tour guide.

EagleRider tours Billy Duffy

In 1987 my best high school buddy broke the eject button off my car stereo. Until I could afford a new one, I either listened to The Cult’s seminal album Electric, which was stuck inside, or nothing at all. Thirty years later the band’s guitarist, Billy Duffy, was along for the ride with EagleRider.

EagleRider offers a variety of motorcycles from which to choose including sport-tourers, adventure-tourers, nakeds, dirtbikes, scooters, and for those with the desire or inability to pilot a two-wheeler, EagleRider has Can-Am Spyders and Polaris Slingshots. To make things interesting (and because I was forced by my boss) a Harley-Davidson Tri-Glide was my steed, and considering the mostly legal rate of speed we traveled, as well as the miles spent going s-t-r-a-i-g-h-t, I was content with the traditional trike.

EagleRider tours Harley-Davdison Tri Glide

The Harley Tri-Glide was a comfortable mount when traversing long stretches of desert straightness, and proved to be a fun and unfamiliar challenge when muscling it through the curvy stuff. Other three-wheelers offered from EagleRider include Can-Am Spyder, Polaris Slingshot (in the background), and Campagna T-Rex.

Considering the unnecessity of packing on the bike everything you brought frees riders to choose any motorcycle model EagleRider has available. Full-dress Harleys and Indians seem to be quintessential choices, but a tour, whether guided or not, or maybe just a bike rental for a day is an excellent way to experience a motorcycle that’s different from what you might be used to.

So if you’re looking for an exceptional motorcycling experience within the country you reside (there are EagleRider locations abroad) look no further than EagleRider. With a dizzying amount of U.S. destinations (as well as Mexico and Canada), a trip duration to match the amount of time you can spend away from the real world, and whether it’s a guided tour or a custom trip of your own design, EagleRider is capable of fulfilling your two-wheel vacation needs. Check out everything EagleRider has to offer at the company’s website EagleRider.com.

EagleRider tours burro

Some of Oatman’s residents are real jackasses.

  • Starmag

    Was there a quota for Eaglerider mentions? 26 in a short article seems like a lot.

    The Cult’s guitarist, flippin’ off. That’s so hardcore!!! Not.

  • Patriot159

    Billy Duffy flashing his IQ? Was that picture necessary? Poor taste Tom, poor taste.

    • Jon Jones

      Love The Cult, but didn’t need that either.

  • Jason

    EagleRider needs to step up their service if they want more local riders.

    I signed up for their membership program (1 rental per month for $30 a month). For my first rental I reserved a BMW R1200GS from EagleRider San Diego for a long weekend and called a week before to confirm they had the bike available. They said yes, no problem. My wife and I fly to San Diego only to find they do not have the R1200GS because it needs tires. Instead we were offered Harley or Indian touring bikes. I picked an Indian Chieftain and wow, what a miserable motorcycle.

    EagleRider San Diego didn’t seem to think this was a big deal nor did the corporate customer service.

    • JMDGT

      Totally unacceptable. Tires my ass. How hard would it have been for them to put new tires on. Idiots.

      • Jason

        EagleRider San Diego said the tires were on order. Now they easily could have gone to the local BMW dealership to purchased tires or had them installed. However, there is very little incentive for them to do that when they are renting the bike at $30 a day through the membership program instead of $120 a day at their normal rate. The increased cost of buying tires at retail would have likely meant that they would lose money on the rental. So they chose to screw me instead. (AND not tell me. This is my biggest issue is complete lack of communication that there was a problem with my rental)

        There was another thing that rubbed me wrong with this rental. When I booked the rental I left a note in the comments that I needed a pick-up from the airport. When I called to verify they had the BMW I also told them my plans had changed and I no longer needed the airport pick-up. I was then told that they don’t pick up at the airport. When were they planning to tell me this?

        • JMDGT

          It sounds like the old we are doing you a favor by letting you rent one of our bikes kiss my ass attitude. I used Eagle Rider in Canton Ohio (I grew up there) through the Harley Dealership. It has been a while but they were courteous and the bike was prepped and ready to go every time. I may have been the only one to rent the bike, it was a Buell you know. It couldn’t have been much of a difference to get tires at a local dealership since your guys dropped the ball on your rental. It was bad customer service plain and simple. In all actuality they couldn’t have cared less about you. If it mattered to them they would have taken care of the issue. I guess the lesson here is call to confirm call again and call one more time. That should make a difference but a customer shouldn’t have to go to those lengths to get what they ask for.

          • Jason

            I got the impression that they though they were offering me an “upgrade” to a Harley or Indian from the BMW. (400lbs more bike, it must be better right? 🙂

            Yes, it was poor customer service. They should have done what was necessary to get me the bike I reserved.

            I’ve also rented from multiple EagleRider locations in the past and had excellent service. This was my first time using the discounted Membership rentals and my first bad experience. I got the impression that the much lower price was reflected in the level of service provided.

            I’ll be renting a bike from EagleRider Portland in the near future. Hopefully that one will go better. The Portland location has a much larger selection of bikes than the all-cruiser San Diego location and may have a different attitude.

          • c w

            Thus, the problem with services like Eagle Rider that are merely that – a service. They don’t have their own infrastructure and features you pay for are not always to the benefit of the dealer that actually provides the motorcycle.

            But I’m gonna look into that membership thing. I wish a dealer would get a selection of bikes together, take them to a track and offer day/weekend passes to let people spend the day/weekend test riding bikes…done monthly this seems like good marketing that generates some revenue (at least: mitigates its own cost).

          • Jason

            Just FYI, EagleRider has added another bogus fee. Since my last rental they have added a $39 a day “BMW fee”. That is on top of the bogus $12 a day “environmental fee”. So a BMW rental advertised as $30 is now $81. (That is still a $150 discount over the standard rate.)

          • c w

            Checked in my area – almost nothing but Harleys between NO and Dallas.

            Oh, well.

  • Billy Jack

    I was about to share this article with my little old lady friends down at the bridge club, when….oh no! “The finger”!!

    Lighten up a little, people…

    Maybe Billy had just found out that he had to eat at Guy Fieri’s.

  • Gruf Rude

    Another informative article from MO. I learned that my tastes and EagleRider’s offerings don’t mesh.

  • JMDGT

    I have rented through them a time or two. A Buell Ulysses was the trusted steed of choice. It is a good service if you can’t have your own personal bike with you. All it takes is a little dough.

  • 0verdose

    Great article morons! My only suggestion? Burracho doesn’t mean drunk. It’s a play of words between Borracho (drunk) and burro (donkay). Unless y’all misspelled Borracho. Then that’s a different story all together.