The Bike That Got Away: 1983 Yamaha Venture

Two years after MC reader Hubert Cormier started riding, he bought this beautiful new ’83 Venture, and he shares the only photo of it with us.

1983 Yamaha Venture
The only photo that Hubert Cormier has of his 1983 Yamaha Venture is this shot taken during a tour of the Cabot Trail, long before digital photography existed.©Motorcyclist

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The one that got away for me was a 1983 Yamaha Venture Touring bike. The picture is from when I toured the Cabot Trail with it. Unfortunately, it is the only one I have. Those were the days before digital photography.

Why I Bought It: I started riding at age 16 on a Yamaha XS1100 and 2 years later, in 1983, I wanted to upgrade as soon as I saw this beautiful new Yamaha Venture touring bike at the local dealer. It rode like a sports bike and was just what I needed as I had the long-distance travel bug. This bike carried me through my university years in Ottawa and was my daily commuter as well as my weekend warrior. It was used to travel back to my hometown in New Brunswick and to visit a special friend on most weekends in Quebec City.

Why I Sold It: After I finished University and started to work I had a few bills to pay and needed to reduce my debt level. I needed a car and could not afford both. In hindsight I practically gave it away. I also experienced a major scare with it that involved a transport truck losing his brakes in a hill and almost crushing the bike and me. After that, riding was never just right, so I was inclined to give it up.

Why I Wish I Hadn't Sold It: 2 reasons. First: after it was sold and gone, I realized that I had given it away under pressure on thinking I would have a hard time selling it, and I was pressed for cash. That was just a stupid mistake on my part. Second: and this is the most important one, I GAVE IN TO MY FEARS and gave up riding altogether for 25 years. During that time I would look at bikes on the road with envy and just could not get myself to overcome it. Well that all changed 3 years ago when I got my current 2006 Royal Star Venture. Call it a midlife crisis if you want, but I decided that I could not live in fear and got back into riding. Best decision I have made in a number of years. One day I would love to find that 83 Venture and restore it, but it is probably long gone by now. I keep scanning the ads to see if it or a similar one would come up. It would be nice to have it again in the stable along with my current RSV.