If there’s a better feeling than riding her motorcycle along the Overseas Highway in the Florida Keys, Eden Jach doesn’t know it. During her most recent visit there, Eden recalls mirage-like weather — a rainbow connecting the horizon ahead of her with the one behind, obscured only by a faint mist.
Naturally, it felt like a once in a lifetime kind of thing. “If anything happened and I croak today, I’m satisfied,” she says.
Though independent and something of a loner by her own description, Eden fell head over heels for the motorcycling community when she befriended a fellow female rider in her 20s. They got matching bikes and spent a few years doing laps around Detroit. When that friend got married and began riding less and less, however, Eden found herself thirsting for more community.
It must’ve been serendipity that around that time she discovered the Litas — a women-only riding group based out of Salt Lake City with a global reach but a local feel. She quickly took it upon herself to charter a Detroit chapter and currently serves as its president.
To say the least, they’re a tight-knit group. But as far as organizations go, they’re fairly loose and casual. “No dues, no drama,” says Eden. For the Litas, it’s all about the open road and community.
“We prefer it because it’s solely about empowering women, sticking together and doing what we love,” says Sherry, a veteran of both motorcycling and the U.S. Air Force.
It shines through, that community focus and overall tone of empowerment. And though their shared loved of motorcycles certainly seems to cement that bond, it doesn’t take long following the Litas to also find a diverse breadth of backgrounds. The fearless leader. The Air Force vet. Even a single mom of two riding with the Litas for the first time.
Sherry believes that diversity plays as influential a role in their bond as their shared interest in bikes.
“You have to respect each other’s beliefs and cultures. We come from so many different backgrounds, walks of life. And we just want to respect everybody. We just want to coexist,” she says.
Not only are motorcycle groups like the Litas a great way to meet with other riders, joining a group and riding in a pack can be safer than riding solo. Some riders feel more safe on the open road when surrounded by fellow riders, but it’s important to keep the group to a manageable size (five to seven riders), ride in a staggered formation and memorize common hand signals.
Like OnStar, the Litas encourage a healthy respect for both the rules and the dangers of the open road. Nearly every rider shared an experience of being lost, broken down or alone at one time or another, without an immediate resource at hand. And though they all obviously survived to tell their tales, they know not everyone is so lucky. In motorcycling, guarding oneself against those off chances is paramount. Which is to say nothing of the dangers of other motorists.
“My fear is someone not seeing me or hearing me coming or seeing me at the last second because my headlights blend with other headlights,” laments Jen, another member of the local chapter. Jen is a friend of Eden’s from high school, a relative newcomer to the Litas, and above all a motorcycle safety buff. She especially encourages safety in numbers when riding: “The more people, the better.”
And while that’s an excellent rule of thumb for really anyone on two wheels, an extra layer of protection certainly never hurts. In lieu of (or in addition to) the advantage of riding in numbers, another great tool for motorcyclists is the OnStar Guardian® app,* which lets you bring key OnStar safety services with you so you can worry less and ride more. The app can be used for emergencies or roadside trouble* or offer reassurance that someone is looking out for you. For longer road trips, you can share your location* with up to seven friends, family members or fellow riders,* so they can have added peace of mind and know when you have reached your destination.
The app also comes with Mobile Crash Response, so wherever you ride, you can feel comfort knowing you’ll have help in a crash. When the app detects a collision, it will alert an OnStar Emergency Advisor* who will confirm where you are and what type of help you need, and then share those details with First Responders.
The Guardian app’s safety features are invaluable for any motorcyclist. Departing Detroit’s Belle Isle Park with that new resource at their disposal, the Litas had only two parting words.