Only one of us here at LoCO had heard of American Ride before — it was playing on the little TVs on a bus heading through Mexico, so it was translated into Spanish. Hosted by a gravelly voiced biker dude named Stan Ellsworth, the show is described as ‘an American historical documentary series,” and it’s produced, somewhat surprisingly, by the Mormon-funded BYU Television.
“It’s our America,” goes the tagline. “Let’s hit the highway.”
In the latest episode, above, Ellsworth rumbles into redwood country, stopping for some bonding with Paul Bunyan at the Trees of Mystery, walking through the giant trees in Jedediah Smith State Park and strolling through Old Town Eureka while chatting with a local historian about the region’s historic timber industry.
This Ellsworth dude has a real amiable gruffness about him. He doffs his bandana to Jedediah Smith: “The man had been mauled by a bear and survived. There wasn’t anything he couldn’t accomplish.”
And, in our favorite moment, he gets deep while staring up at the majestic redwoods. “You have to look at these trees with solemn reverence,” he intones.
Ride on, brother.