"As far back as I can remember I’ve always romanticized the idea of riding a motorcycle. "

Courtney Dawn

Courtney Dawn // the kindest soul on two wheels.

Rewind to 2016 - the year the Litas Edmonton was born. The group had organized a Camp 'n Braap in Wayne AB at the Last Chance Saloon.  This is where I first met Courtney, I mean it was hard not to - she stood out from the crowd with her legendary strawberry blonde locks, and infectious smile.

Courtney has a softness to her that is rare in the moto community. Visiting her on her northern Saskatchewan farm was like visiting a gazelle in her natural habitat.  And although I miss her here in Edmonton, seeing her in her element brings me such as sense of happiness for her, and confidence in knowing she is exactly where she is supposed to be.  Courtney took us on a tour of the back farm roads and showed us some of SK's most undiscovered spots - including a prairie ferry ride!

Q&A with Courtney

What inspired you to start riding? As far back as I can remember I’ve always romanticized the idea of riding a motorcycle. My mom and dad both used to ride before they had my sister and me. That was kicked into high gear when I started dating my husband, he’s a seasoned vet when it comes to riding. For a summer or two I was OK with being on the back of his bike but then I got sick staring at the back of his helmet and was ready to head out on my own!

How long have you been riding? 3 Years

What kind of motorcycle do you ride and why? Moto Guzzi, V7 Stone. I typically gravitate towards vintage style bikes and the Guzzi satisfies that. It still has the character of the 1970s Guzzi with some modern upgrades. It’s classic, it has style, it rumbles, it shakes and it’s a little bit unique.

What is your dream bike? I really love my Guzzi but I’d like to build to the collection… Next I’ll build a custom from a Honda CB350 that’s in the garage. After that I’d like a dual sport, something street legal that I can rip around the farm and back country roads with.

Were you intimidated by the male dominance in the riding community? No, can’t say I was intimidated. I’ve met some really great people over the years, both male and female.

Did you have female friends that rode who helped you get started? Not really, they didn’t help me get started but I quickly found some great women to ride with. I’ve met some friends already that I’m sure I will have for a lifetime.

What do you do for a living? Currently undergoing a career change...I was in Event Management and am now studying GIS. In addition to a career in GIS my husband and I will be working on turning our acreage into a self-sufficient homestead.

How has riding helped you in your personal and professional life? I’m happy I’ve discovered it, it gives me an outlet for fun and to meet new people but I can’t say it’s changed me as a person.

Do you have any women in the moto industry that you are inspired by? You (Micaela) Why? You inspire me because you’ve have this clear vision of what you want and nothing is going to get in your way. You have this huge heart and you just want the best for everyone. I could go on forever but that’s the really quick version of it 

Have you experience any competitiveness or negativity in the women’s moto community? Yes, I have. There are many personalities within the community and many different motives or interests in riding. There are women in the industry that work hard at putting together community events and making everyone feel welcome, feel a sense of comradery, provide support and information sharing. And there are other women that bring us a few steps backwards. I guess it’s all about the people you choose to surround yourself with.

Why do you think women’s moto events/groups/projects are becoming so popular? Social media is having a big influence and I think there’s comfort in knowing that you are surrounded by other like-minded women.

What is your dream moto trip? Ha. I have a few! Canada has many destinations that I would still like to explore on the bike. I’d like to moto camp my way around the East Coast, Yukon and more of the West Coast. I’d really like to travel around the country side of Ireland and Scotland and while I’m wishing, I’d like to ride a Royal Enfield through India.

How do you feel you have broken stereotypes as a female rider? I don’t think I’ve met anyone that’s fit a stereotype. Every rider I’ve encountered has been uniquely themselves.

How do you feel the image of female riders has changed over the past few years? I feel female riders in the past have had to assert themselves and find themselves in “a man’s world” and I don’t think it’s a “man’s world” anymore.

Describe how you feel empowered when you ride? I feel free and in control. Nothing else exists.

What is your favorite place to ride? I love the mountains. I love just getting out of the city and exploring new destinations and crappy small town bars/ breakfast joints, trekking down muddy roads to get to my favourite spot by the lake or just stopping at places you’d never think to stop at if you were in a vehicle.

Who is your favorite person(s) to ride with? My husband. We go on the best adventures and I always feel safe riding with him.

Do you think current motorcycle trends cater to you? I love the seeing old bikes resurrected and get back on the road, the retro style is cool. I’m personally not as interested in the new bikes made to look old but that’s personal preference.

What would you like to see in the moto community for gear, bikes, etc.? I’d like to see Saskatchewan lower the price on bike insurance! I’d also like to see motorcycle awareness be a part of driver’s education training.