ST. PETERSBURG — Pete Bartoles stares at the computer screen in front of him.
“I can think of 100 other places I’d rather be right now,” he says as his gaze returns the screen. One of those places is with his motorcycle collection.
On the computer screen in front of him, Bartoles slowly scrolls through images of 1936 Harley-Davidson Knucklehead motorcycles, which he says is the “rarest Knucklehead of them all.”
Bartoles, an evacuee at New Heights Elementary School in St. Petersburg, owns 14 Harley-Davidson motorcycles, the majority of which are antiques. He evacuated this morning from his home near Shore Acres, but wonders what will become of his motorcycle collection.
He estimates that his rarest bikes — the 1912 Harley from his great grandfather and a 1936 green Knucklehead EL — are worth more than $ 100,000 combined.
Bartoles said he spent 36 hours prepping his motorcycles for the storm. The fourteen bikes are tied down and raised 14-feet in his garage.
“I just wonder what it’s going to be like when we get out of here,” he said. “I’m worried about this one.”