9.04.2007,12:24 PM
Got Dirt?

Sherpie and I had our first genuine introduction to dirt and trails at Rocky Ridge Cycle Park near Decauter, Texas. Dirt, mud, sand, gravel, air, water, trails, hills, woods trails, branches, roots, more dirt, more sand, lots of water, more air, jumps and more jumps, squiggles, wiggles, dust boogers, and chiggers. We crashed twice, once full impact, the other a slow speed drop when the rear and front tires 'miscommunicated' (aka I chose the wrong line).

I joined Ed and his two teenaged sons (and Buck, our mascot) with their four bikes (from a 80cc to 450cc) and a four-wheeler. Bill rode in on his V-strom and tested all of Ed's wheels, Theresa trailered her snappy DR125 and Don rode in on his DR650. From my first experience over the three days, any bike more than a 400-450 is too much for the trails where we were.

We set up base camp near the larger pond on the property where three of us stayed one or both nights. Bill returned home Sunday while Ed and I stayed over Sunday night. Theresa and Don were up only for Saturday. Bill photographed the action shots on the bikes (a few appear below) and I captured happenings at base camp.





I finally got my christening in water crossings. Both I and the bike were well splattered with mud by Sunday.

David competes in motocross and his skills far outshine ours. We all were amazed at what that youngster can do on the bikes.

Buck was our camp mascot.

Wiley made his debut and wanted to ride.

Ahh, the 'mosh pit' (as Don referred to it). Sherpie was the only bike that didn't visit the mud pit. It ate nearly every vehicle that dared to test it.

Except for the smaller jumps, my unintentional big 'air' was a hidden 12 foot drop into a ravine and up again, crashing into the hillside on the immediate cambered turn at the top that we failed to negotiate. Um, need to roll off throttle at the very top......... oops. Ouch. Got back on and rode back down and over the creek bed for more tame hills/jumps. (aka 'bunny trail') Those puffy air jumps were better for my novice skills.

So now I have a challenge: the Ravine and Turn from Hell.

Theresa made two dutch ovens of chili and it was as good the second and third times as it was the first. I made blackberry camp cobbler in another dutch oven for desert over the camp fire after Saturday's dinner.

I found a large weeping willow tree by the pond to erect my tent. I could hear the owls and fish jumping at night and a nice breeze lulled me to sleep.


I learned much and learned I need to learn more. Redundancy makes perfect (another perspective of 'practice'). I had two full days of practice and one half day of relaxing and packing up.

So, with my first dirt adventure under my boots, I am hooked. Line and sinker. Now I have to find some roads or areas where I can practice my skills and closer to home. We are already planning on another adventure in the near future. Hopefully next month, or maybe sooner. Bill is smitten and intends to find his own dirty bike, and a few others from the TWT forum may join in the next visit to one of the cycle parks.

I love it!!!!




posted by Macrobe
Permalink ¤