This past summer, a Milpitas father-daughter duo took to the open road for the motorcycle trip of a lifetime…
Vaibhav Sharma and his 13-year-old daughter Simi Sharma traveled across 8 different states for a total of 3,000 miles over 9 days.
The pair was driven to take the journey after discovering that family friends, a husband and wife, were going to be doing their own motorcycle trip, going from Milpitas up to the Arctic Circle. Vaibhav had been thinking of doing his own long motorcycle trip, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity.
“And then my daughter Simi asked, ‘Can I also come along?’” said Vaibhav in an interview with The Beat. “And I thought: Yes, that would be awesome.”
Vaibhav and Simi planned to start off the trip going up north with their friends, toward Seattle, then start crossing east.
“It was an epic journey,” said Vaibhav.
Their route was not planned. Each day, father and daughter would wake up in the morning and basically decide on the highway and direction. Vaibhav would give his daughter a choice, always asking if she wanted to head back home. But Simi kept saying she wanted to push onward.
Simi was 10 when she took her first ever motorcycle ride with her father.
“I’ve loved every single time I’ve been on a motorcycle with my dad,” Simi told The Beat. “I used to ask him: How do you resist the urge not to go out every day?’”
At the outset of their epic journey, Simi felt like things were a little hard. Temperatures were anywhere between 95 and 100 degrees, and it got uncomfortable at times.
“But after the initial heat and getting used to being on a motorcycle for that long, it was really fun and exciting,” Simi said.
The duo crossed through Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, and of course California. The trip spanned from June 24 through July 2.
As they rode through many beautiful sites, Simi recorded their route on an app called Polar Steps.
“There was this beautiful highway – Highway 12…it had these amazing yellow flowers for miles and miles. It was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen,” Simi shared with The Beat, citing an area that stretches from Washington into Idaho.
Vaibhav and his wife moved to Milpitas in 2009, just a couple months before Simi was born. Simi is currently an 8th-grader at Rancho Middle School. She is already telling Vaibhav that she’d like to do a trip like this every year.
Vaibhav is also considering a future, similar trip across multiple states – except this one would be by plane. As an avid pilot who got his license in 2007, Vaibhav loves to fly. And his daughter is following in his footsteps: she has signed up to start as a Civil Air Patrol cadet this Fall. Her father was an active volunteer for Civil Air Patrol before the pandemic hit, and is himself excited to be getting back into volunteering.
For Vaibhav and Simi, getting out of the local area and traveling to different places offers a unique experience.
“You can see many more things while riding on a motorcycle than you would in a car,” said Vaibhav. “Being on a motorcycle gives you a very different feel.”