My name is Casey Aicklen and I’m from Austin, Texas. I am a horticulturalist and earn a living doing landscape design. Outside of the plant world, I am a silversmith, enjoy photography, ripping around on two wheels, and I am building a small cabin with my partner. We are doing everything ourselves by hand including the construction, electrical, and plumbing. When I’m not working, you can find me on my motorcycle or dirt bike. I have a ’02 HD Sportster 1200 with the sickest paint job by my buddy Josh Trevino. It’s pretty hot the majority of the year, so the best rides where I live are hill country back roads that end at some type of body of water.
Discovering motorcycles has been life-changing. When I hopped on a bike for the first time it was like discovering a new part of myself. I have met some of my best friends through motorcycles. I always had more guy friends than girls until I started riding. I’ve met so many strong and badass women that I can relate to and that I have so much in common with. Groups like The Litas and social media make it so easy to meet other women in this community.
I recently rode a little over 7,000 miles from Austin, Texas to Canada and back over the course of 2 months. We started the trip with 5 people from Austin to Raton for Run to Raton Festival. If you haven’t heard of this event, it’s definitely one you don’t want to miss. The roads in Northern New Mexico are incredible. After Raton, my friends headed back towards home and I took off to ride the Rocky Mountains all the way up into Alberta. I rode through Colorado, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, Alberta, and British Columbia. I tried to mainly stick to scenic byways and even ended up doing about 500 miles of off-roading on my Sportster.
I had never been to Utah before and it blew my mind. The landscape is unreal. The roads will take you through narrow slot canyons and high above on a rigid backbone. Another highlight for me was Idaho. I followed rivers throughout the state that had primitive hot springs all along the way. There is nothing better than riding through the most beautiful country and ending the day with a soak.
Since my trip, the question I get asked a lot is “what was your favorite part?” This is the hardest question to answer. The entire trip was so fun. Every single day was an incredible adventure through beautiful landscapes. As I rode further north up the Rocky Mountains, the views only became more majestic. We met so many motorcyclists on the road and everyone was incredibly nice. As it goes with any motorcycle trip, we had some breakdowns. Every single set back was countered with someone willing to extend a helping hand and only made the adventure that more grand. I have always held this community close to my heart, but this trip really solidified it for me. The motorcycle community is like nothing else. We take care of each other.
I’ve only been riding for about 5 years. I started out on a dirt bike and fell in love immediately. I quickly became bored with riding on the back of other people’s road bikes and so I bought my own. It’s so awesome seeing the women’s motorcycle industry grow so quickly. If anything, we just need to continue to grow. If you’re thinking about buying a bike…just do it! You don’t need a man or anyone else to get started. I learned by riding in my neighborhood. As I gained confidence, I would venture out onto busier streets. Then I eventually met a bunch of women in my city that rode through The Litas. It would be nice to have more options for clothing and gear that aren’t all bedazzled and pink. I am so grateful for brands like BH&BR for providing that to women motorcyclists. I love my boots and leather jacket and they have become staples in my motorcycle gear. I wore my Karla jacket every single day on my ride to Canada.
Follow Casey on Instagram: @smoke_and_lightning