Friday, April 29, 2016
Meet the Rider: Mark Hopkins #59
Mark AKA Thumper #59 is from Chino Valley, AZ. and participated in 2010 and 2011 Hoka Hey Motorcycle Challenge. He wanted to prove to himself he still had the “stones” to do something like this. His closest call with wild life and also the most memorable tales he has to tell involves a family of buffalo. Getting a little too close for comfort to the Momma and calf, the patrolling male got so close he blew snot all over him. Waiting for his opportunity to bust loose of this herd as soon as the Momma and baby were clear he was out of there. Like several of the warriors who were called to ride the 2010 HHMC the spirits that were felt out there were no strangers to Mark either. Compassion for the wrong that has been done on this continent in places like Wounded Knee and Andersonville were very strong out there and has stayed with him ever since.
Thumper learned about the HHMC on a motorcycle forum and when it was being discussed he was inquisitive enough to do a little homework and decided “this is right up my alley.” Although the money was a great motivator for some for him it didn’t matter. Sharing a warm spot outside with a fellow rider by taking turns putting quarters in a campground dryer all night and snuggling up to the vent outside Mark remembers how wet and nasty the weather was in the Alcan that year. He does feel although he is still a “grouchy old man,” he is a lot more tolerant. He feels anyone who is capable of doing this event should, it gives him a tremendous feeling of satisfaction. He knows there is a definite brother/sisterhood that exists with HHMC riders. Take half the gear you think you will need and “Every ounce of strength and energy you’ve got.”