March 25, 2014


About a month ago I got invited to participate in a "Rally". Its basically a similar format, on a MUCH smaller level, to Dakar, or Baja. You show up prepared for anything and everything, get your roadbook, and try to complete each stage. The roadbook is essentially a paper scroll with basic navigational tools that tell you where to go. Each Waypoint consists of three things; ODO(what your mileage should be), Tulip(graphic indicating the terrain), and a CAP heading(your literal degrees on a compass). These three things should Theoretically give you enough information to make it from start to finish. This was my first time navigating like this and let me tell you, it adds a completely different element, on top of riding gnarly shit.

We base camped just outside of Green River Utah. Place is so fucking insane. Saturday morning we took off at Sunrise and had two stages that totaled 130 miles. Each of the 20 riders were started every minute on the dot for 20 minutes. At the end of the day I wound up with a very surprising 5th(I thought I was last). Single track, sand washes, rocky double track, and slick rock made up for an extrememly fun, and very tiring, day. Sunday morning we woke up and it was fucking cold. We postponed the start an hour and it was still 27 degrees when we took off. I rode right into town to get a piping hot coffee, some doghnuts, and much needed "Wait for the sun to actually crest over the hills". That pit stop was about 30 minutes so I was dead last, but did not care, would rather be warm. The day consisted of quite different terrain that totaled a brutal 170 miles. I say brutal not just because the trails got a little crazy, but because I spaced stopping for lunch, and in turn hit a major wall at mile 150. But I pushed through and I think I ended up with 10th on Sunday.

Bottom line, if you have a chance to do one of these for fun, or even to compete, DO IT. Very challenging but once you get the hang of it, shit becomes very rewarding. I would say all but three of us had legit Rally setups; fairing, motorized roadbook holder, and an ICO. I put together a manual roadbook holder from a pencil box and some wooden dowel, and then rigged up an iphone mount for my CAP and ODO. I obviously felt like the odd man out when I arrived to see all this shit these guys had, we had two dudes that have done Dakar and three that have done the Baja 1000 SOLO! I got a couple laughs, but my shit worked. And it felt even better when I was passing some dudes!

I didnt take enough photos. Here are the ones I have plus a quick little vid.

First day Start

Slick Rock, so fun

I HAD to watch supercross somewhere, Ray's coming through in the clutch with cable, cold beer, and great parking

A balmy 27 degrees

Cold problem solved.....
Or so I thought

Derek's Pimped XR650

"Imma take a selfie"

This bike did Dakar in 2010

Um this obstacle was pretty challenging. I rode through it with my legs on top of my bars
Time to go back to reality


buffalobisonhead said...

good work, that looks class!

How's the blisters?

Denver Dan said...

Fuck Yes!!!