So I have never been to Chopper Fest before. Not for a lack of trying. The last several years it seems I have been doomed to miss the David Mann Chopper Fest every year it comes around. For my first few years in San Diego after moving to southern California, my bike would magically stop running just before Chopper Fest. I was losing hope until 2015, when I made sure to request time off from work to make the trip up to Ventura only to be told, “No, we need you in Jersey.” Wonderful, not only do I miss Chopper Fest, but I get stuck in New Jersey for two weeks hearing everyone complain about the weather back home wishing I could be complaining about it too. Turns out all I had to do to make sure I would be able to make it this year was to be unemployed. Worth it. I made it!...barely.
The plan was to arrive as gates opened but a faulty toggle switch and a late start had me racing up Ventura to make the rest of the show. Thankfully, the rain held off and the ride up the coast ended up being beautiful but chilly. For those that have never been to the Chopper Fest, it is a playground of beautiful and creative bikes all assembled in one location for all us to drool over. Everything from choppers to dynas, pristine show bikes to grungy, mile-worn chariots of death. It was refreshing to see so many amazing bikes that I have never seen in person before, especially the ones I only ever get to appreciate through social media. It was a real pleasure to photograph this year’s Chopper Fest and contribute to the tribute to David Mann. The Chopper Fest is on it’s 13th year and cheers to many, many more to come.
Follow the Chopper Fest on Facebook and Instagram and check out their website to get involved in the 14th Annual Chopper Fest happening on December 10, 2017!
-Nick / @nfaught_photography