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SCORRA WOMEN’S RIDE DAY Bytown Motorcycle Association

August 2009

NEWSLETTER Published by riders, for riders.

Roaring Good Times

Find Yourself

GPS 101

BMA Family

FUN Day

AUGUST 16 Northumberland A Forest Falls

Eric

Enduro = Pain Pain = Enduro

Meets Shane

FREE VOLUNTEER POWERED!


photo: Anthony Kerr

BYTOWN BYTOWN MOTORCYCLE MOTORCYCLE ASSOCIATION ASSOCIATION

www.bytown-motorcycle-assoc.ca www.bytown-motorcycle-assoc.ca Dave “Woody” Percival Head Cheese Dave “Woody” Percival Mike Hillier President 2IC Mike Lueders Hillier Carolin Bean Counter Vice-President

IN THIS ISSUE: STOCK:

dirt from the prez the view from here falling down exhaust note tekvest update

BLING: rally raid - big dogs everywhere scorra event - women rip! limerick family day - SUNNY! get lost! - Jeff shows us how northumberland forest - dirty deeds enduro training daze limerick forest updates

Can you believe it? We finally have our OWN signs! The OFTR have generously offered to supply us with as many as these signs as we need. If you are interested in receiving these please contact Ken at the OFTR.

ken@oftr.ca

Mike O’Rielly Carolin Lueders Word Processor Treasurer Dave Phifer Cat Hurding Mike O’Rielly Secretary Andrew Jasiak GroupPhifer Shot Dave Volunteer Co-ordinator Dallas Shannon Computer Geek Andrew Jasiak Kaveri Gupta Membership Pwincess Readsalot Dallas Shannon Corrina Morehouse Newsletter Editor Faron Young Kevin Eastman Janet Eastman Kaveri Gupta Cooler Consumers Copy Editor/Art Director Jeff Ackert LarryMcAnanama Murray Matthew Randy SmithLobodzinski Michael “Ooobah-Moto” Barry Isherwood Doug Hunter Eric McSweeney Contributors Kaveri Gupta Larry Murray Carolin Lueders Ken Hoeverman Doug Hunter Marlene Bleau Contributors Steve Garnsey Randy Smith Carolin Lueders Photographs www.sarahmoffetimagery.com Anthony “Antontrax” Kerr Dallas Shannon Eric McSweeney Larry Murray Advertising Sales Kurt Busman Bill O’Neil To the BMA Membership Photographs Suggestions (please!) for advertising sales. To contact anybody about anything please email us at: offroad.newsletter@gmail.com If you would like to receive the newsletter by email please contact: offroad.newsletter@gmail.com Written permission must be requested to reproduce, or reprint all or portions of be therequested content contained herein. Written permission must to reproduce, or reprint all or portions of the content contained herein.

© Bytown Motorcycle Association 2009 © Bytown Motorcycle Association 2009


Dirt From the PREZ by Dave “Woody” Percival

I was contemplating the fate of a club recently. A seemingly strong, vibrant group –always in the picture, lots of current events, a good solid club – you know the type. I was thinking of the Northumberland Trail Riders (NTR). What on earth becomes of them without their forest? Remember, this is Warren Thaxter’s backyard, so it can obviously happen anywhere.

Now what is there for this group of riders? Large tracks of public forest are a little hard to come by. We are completely defined as a club by our riding areas. They give us the cause to unite as a group, with a common purpose of creating trails, holding events and doing fun stuff together, right? Sure you think it’s all about riding, but there is cost as it were. This is the work done on the “inside” by the members of our club, who are willing to do more than just play. Larry Murray has always said that we need to be at all the meetings all the time. He, Kevin Eastman, and Mike Hillier are seemingly always watching the Limerick scene. Stop and think for a minute about how incredibly lucky we are to have this forest and all the trail in it. Don’t think just because we “made” the trail network, it is “auto ours”. Imagine if we ever lost the Limerick for riding! Not likely it would seem, but the NTR group would have a chat for you on that issue. In my area, Lanark County, there are 5300 hectares of county property, some of which is riding area for our club. Think M&M trails and more. Two years ago, when a board of directors was called for, I jumped into the fray. Now, I am one of the twelve board of directors of the Lanark County Municipal Trails Committee, and am one of two people on the trails designation sub-committee. That, my friends, is how we protect our riding areas. My point is that if you really care for the sport, you will find an open door to inside involvement to really protect and advance the sport. As a watchdog, we can make sure that the lessons of Northumberland are not soon forgotten. So don’t wait, get involved. Call me, Larry or Kevin, and we will find you a spot on the map. There are only a few, but they are all super important to protect. If you know of a riding area you would like to be more involved with call us and we will have a look into it.

photo: Carolin Lueders

Their area is a 6000 acre forest of mostly single track lost because of the efforts of the Nature Conservancy of Canada. I suspect it was an inside job. It seems that they found ways to influence a new advisory committee and that’s all she wrote. No doubt we will hear more from Warren.

We’re in the meat of riding season - the Prez - READY TO RIDE!

A good example of hard work on the inside is the success of Larose forest riders: Marlene, Dale and Ed. They were persistent, fought, and won a small, but important riding area for their area riders. Excellent effort, with a great reward (more riding area) and hopefully more to come. On another note, don’t forget that August 16th is our club’s family fun/trail riding/skills competition day. Bring a lunch, prepare to have fun and do some riding at KTM Acres, here at Woody’s. Finally, if anyone is interested in land or property, I am always watching for land adjacent to me coming up for sale that would add to the local riding area, as I own 350 acres but ride on close to 1000. We need riding area partners to enhance and protect the local riding area here. Give me a call if you are interested in investing in property. ∆

Woody


THE VIEW FROM HERE by Dallas Shannon

A Maritime Vacation Maritimers talk about the weather incessantly. “Nice day, eh?” “Looks like she’s gonna rain, huh?” “Tomorrow’s s’posed to be 22 me son.” “How’d ya like dis wedder?” You can’t go anywhere in the Maritimes without chatting about the weather - it’s part of the daily small talk and it’s always changing. Like they say in the Maritimes, if you don’t like the weather, just wait an hour.

The only thing I’ve been consistently doing this summer is cancelling my plans due to the unpredictable weather. On a day I am supposed to be riding Calabogie, I’m at home wondering why it’s sunny when they called for thunderstorms. Again. Curse the weather gods.

photo: internet

I’m here to say “Cead Mile Failte”, which is a traditional Nova Scotia saying in Gaelic for “One Hundred Thousand Welcomes”. No need to go to the Maritimes this summer, you can experience it right here in good ol’ Ontario. Well, at least the weather. This year, Ontario is experiencing a Maritime summer and I don’t think anyone is happy about it, especially me. One of the benefits of living in Ontario was supposed to be sunny, predictable weather. Weather that you can make plans around. Weather that isn’t worth talking about because it’s consistently consistent.

Another beautiful summer day in the Maritimes. Or Ontario.

about this yet, it’s worth a visit to the OFTR website to get more information. On a more positive note, Marlene Bleau’s persistent efforts in Larose are paying off. The first ever BMA ride day at Larose went well with plenty of support and enthusiasm. Thanks to everyone who is helping expand and develop this new riding area.

Three of the events in this month’s issue were fraught with “weather concerns”: the Limerick Forest Family day, the SCORRA Women’s Day and the Rally Raid dualsport event. The Limerick event has been rained on three years in a row and, to the relief of the organizers, this year the weather cooperated. On the SCORRA training day it POURED rain but the women toughed it out and had a great time anyway. The Rally Raid weekend was supposed to be rained out but both Saturday and Sunday turned out great – although it seemed like a weekend’s worth of rain came down on Friday night alone.

BMA super-vet Dave Phifer placed third in the Burnt River Enduro. Check out the article to see the pain he suffered to finish (and place)! He still may be in bed...

I hope you enjoy this issue. We have content pouring in from all over Ontario and there is a lot of interesting material. The Shane Watts DirtWise story came in at the last minute from BMA club member Eric McSweeny and it sounds like he enjoyed meeting Shane and learning from him. Anyone planning on riding with Eric in the future better be taking notes. We’ve got plenty of updates on Limerick Forest and the sad situation in the Northumberland Forest. If you haven’t heard

Cue the bagpipes... ∆

If you’ve ever wondered how to change a tire on the trail Larry Murray is going to explain it to you - with pictures! Thanks Larry! I’ll have Kevin read this over in case I blow a tube next time we ride. Enjoy the remainder of the summer and let’s hope we get the August and September that we deserve!

Enjoy,

offroad.newsletter@gmail.com


by Larry Murray

LIMERICK FAMILY DAY This year was the 15th Limerick Forest Trail Ride. This ride started in 1995 and was initially known as the Limerick Forest Kids Ride. It was a poker run for the young riders and family members of the Leeds and Grenville Trail Riders based out of Brockville. When the BMA was re-inventing itself in the late 1990s after being non-active, the two clubs came together as one. Then the OFTR got started with a trail ride series run by Blair Sharpless and Warren Thaxter sponsored Kawasaki Canada. It is my understanding that this was the first trail ride in On-

“This sandwich smells funny - where did you say you were keeping it?”

The ride would bring family’s from Ontario, Quebec, New York and one or two from Pennsylvania. The number of riders would run from 80 to 120. Today in Ontario there are 3 or 4 family rides put on by the OFTR per year and more kids are learning the right way to ride then ever before. The Limerick ride has not changed much over the years. It still has three loops, beginner, intermediate and advanced. It’s not about the bike but the length and difficulty. And there are lots of door prizes and trophies for young riders.

“This will make you a faster rider, I swear! Just don’t tell your mother.”

tario where kids could ride on the same trails as the adults. And sometimes alongside some of the top rides in Canada.

This year’s ride was everything it should be. There were about 45 paid riders and 15 workers. As well, there were 27 or so trophies given out to rides under 15 and door prizes to


boot! All the riders, young and old had a great day. The smiles on the kid’s faces said it all, it was a grand day!

Thank-you’s: The BMA did an excellent job. The event planners did a great job! Thank you Mike and Kevin. Lunch was put on at N/C by the BMA. A special thanks to Linda Jonker and Michelle Huibers. They did all the work getting and cooking the food! Thank you to Ken Hoeverman from the OFTR and Geoff McVey (the Limerick Forest manager) who were there helping and giving out information. ∆

Made in the shade - Ken Hoeverman of the OFTR supports our events.

SOMETHING TO SAY? Photos, product reviews, ride reports, are all welcome. Gwammer, spwelling and punatuation are all optional (we have a GREAT copy editor)!

EMAIL! offroad.newsletter@gmail.com

The set up - looking good! Check out the hardware!

Did we mention this was a BMA event?


WHAT THE HECK IS THIS CARD? WHAT DO I DO WITH IT? Every year the OFTR recognizes volunteer hours logged by its member clubs and last year the BMA logged the highest number of volunteer hours in Ontario. This year there will be prizes for top volunteers and highest hours per club. Last year our club was given a Stihl chainsaw by the OFTR and now the club owns three saws in total. Woody can currently juggle 3 saws and he’s constantly grumbling that he wants to learn to juggle 4. Let’s help Woody achieve his dream - print this card, fill it out with your volunteer hours and submit it to the club.∆

These cards were given to the club by the OFTR. They are just a simple way to record volunteer hours. If you do any volunteer work (arrowing, registration, pre-riding, trail clearing, etc.) please fill in the card and either send it to the OFTR or give it to any club executive at one of the events.

Safety First!

It’s important that as a club we accurately record our volunteer hours. This helps the OFTR by showing that there are a lot of people and volunteer hours going into to riding off-road motorcycles in Ontario.

BMA MEMBERS!

10

Woody’s Cycles

%

off any purchase with the mention of this coupon

www.woodys-cycles.com • 1-800-991-BIKE(2453)


LAROSE FOREST RIDE DAY

BMA Code Of Conduct

by Marlene Bleau

1. Do not trespass on private property 2. Ride on existing trails 3. Respect nature 4. Respect and be courteous to other people who also have the right to be on the trails 5. Remember that few other vehicles are as maneuverable as bikes, so give the others lots of room 6. Hunt camp owners do a lot of trail grooming. Respect their efforts 7. Stop when you see a horse 8. Do not ride during hunting season 9. Comply with all legislation, bylaws and insurance requirements 10. Always wear a helmet and other safety gear (but take off your helmet if you talk to someone) 11. Do not litter 12. Leave the place better than you found it 13. Keep your bike QUIET. More sound = less ground!

I am pleased to announce that the information/riding day at the Larose Forest was a success.  We had a good turnout with lots of families out for a good time. The weather was great and not too buggy, and the trail was super tight and

difficult.  Everyone who came back to the parking area was smiling and happy with their riding. I am embarrassed to say that I bailed out on Ed, but Ed was kind enough to take my bike back out and finish the trail. Thanks Ed, that sacrifice will not be forgotten.   Now for the BIG thank you’s: • Thank you to Jim Kolman for the great food, drinks, and the bikes that were lent out – that was cool. •

Any-


BMA SNAPSHOT

Local BMA member Doug Hunter recently returned from British Columbia where he was on an epic dualsport ride. He’s documented the journey and his story will be published in a future issue of Inside Motorcycles. Doug has leaked a teaser photo for his fellow BMA members - Don’t you wish you were there right now? Thank you to Bruce Burns for manning the BBQ – great job!

• Thank you to Terry for the sound testing equipment and for being the first one out on the trail – tough job I know, but someone had to do it. • Thank you to Dale, Ed and Kevin for the great trails and all of your hard work. • Thank you to everyone who came out to give them a hand clearing trail. And guys, this is still just the beginning, so keep on coming and helping. ∆


Upcoming Events BMA Family Fun Day! - AUG. 16th BMA Family Fun Day - August 16th

BMA Family Fun day is being held at KTM Acres in Perth. A day to kick back, ride, relax, play m/c games, and skill contests. Plus, you really get to know other folks in the club. There will be medals and a free ride in the afternon. If you are so inclined the property will be well arrowed for the various skill levels for trail riding during the day. Bring a lunch and bug repellent. More details will follow. For info contact Marlene Bleau 613-6781676 OR mbleau@hotmail.com

Other upcoming events happening in Ontario: Ganny to Gooderham (and back) August 1 & 2, 2009 Location: Near Port Hope, Ont This ride travels from the Cobourg area up to Gooderham with an overnight stay at the OFTR HQ. Gooderham’s annual Horseshoe Days weekend is on and there is a big dinner and a live band on Saturday night. Entry Fee: $100 includes Sat. dinner and Sunday breakfast if entered by July 18th. Also includes primitive camping at OFTR HQ in Gooderham or see list for local accommodations. Mid Summers Dream Trail Ride - Sun Aug 16 6th Annual Mid Summer’s Dream Trail Ride in the Ganaraska Forest. Some of the best trails in Ontario Part of the Ontario Trail Ride Series Location: Ganaraska Forest Date: August 16th, 2009 Date: August 16, 2009

Gooderham Trail Ride - Sun Aug 23 Gooderham Trail Ride (Part of the Ontario Trail Ride Series)  START: Gooderham Recreation Centre, home of the OFTR !! Gooderham is 15 minutes from Haliburton. FEE:$50 Adult ($40 pre-entry by August 20th) $25 Kids ($20 pre-entry) Calabogie Boogie Trail Ride - September 12 & 13th Start and Finish: Calabogie Highlands Golf Resort, Calabogie Ontario. SIGN IN: Friday 6:00 to 9:00 pm. Saturday & Sunday 8:00 to 9:00 am (must complete sound test before registration) RIDERS MEETING: 9:00 am and ride start directly after meeting.ENTRY FEES: Pre-Entry: $100 (CAD) by September 1 (includes commemorative t-shirt). Post-Entry: $120, 1-day entry: $65 RIDE LEVEL: Easy Primary Loops, Saturday and Sunday! Suitable for novice level riders and up. All “optional “ trails will be rated for difficulty level.

If you would like your free listing here, please email your event to: offroad.newsletter@gmail.com


A FOREST FALLS... The Northumberland Forest Update by Ken Hoeverman

In case you haven’t heard, the Northumberland Forest was closed to ORMs recently. There has been a long battle over this issue but on July 23rd it was finalized. To read more about this please go to the OFTR website - www.oftr.ca Northumberland County Council approved a motion that will remove the approved trails developed by the Northumberland Trail Riders (NTR) over the past 12 years. A resolution from 1997 that allowed NTR to develop single track trails was worded to approve trails signs and ribbons for events rather than full time use.

cause excessive traffic.

This was a two year process and was likely doomed from the start. Documentation from the County indicating plans to “reduce motorized use a minimum” was uncovered late in the process.

Bob Kennedy of NTR was our volunteer representative until NFAC meetings became too much of a volunteer commitment. Warren Thaxter took over this issue after Ken Hoeverman was removed from NFAC as a non-resident and did a fantastic job. 

The approved plan will allow ORMs to delevop trails in under 500 acres of the 5,424 acres municipal forest. This forest was transferred from the MNR to the County in 2000 which essentially removed our rights of passage and transformed the land into private property. This area was also included in the Oak Ridges Moraine Act in 2001 which was introduced primarily for aggregate extraction and watershed management. While there are few rivers, pond or lakes in the forest, claims of underwater recharge and discharge areas were effectively presented in the controversial “Facilitators Atlas”. What remains of the 60+ kms of single track trail is 8kms of existing trail and 50 kms of forest access roads. The parcel allocated to NTR may be developed to include more single track although the density will likely cause more environmental problems. Local riders will have a limited experience and OFTR/ORM visitors will be discouraged so as not to

More insulting is that the County has allocated the NTR single track to other non-motorized user groups, most of these trails will probably grow over in the next couple of years unless the county gets involved in brushing and scrubbing.

We believe the decision was a foregone conclusion. Warren’s delegation was really heartfelt and appealing. While we were probably already sunk, the county made a very dramatic sound presentation with revving engines turned up very loud with a sound meter on the screen for effect that stirred the audience and council. Yesterday’s council meeting included nine delegations, Ken Hoeverman was first and Warren Thaxter’s was last. Warrens presentation was excellent and heartfelt. (OFTR.CA) We learned a lot about the municipal process during this battle which will help us should we ever get into this situation again. County staff used a lots of tricks and dirty play here. Experience and treachery won the day. ∆


Limerick Forest Updates by Larry Murray

Trail Names If you get a chance to look at the new Limerick Forest Maps (they are on both the BMA and Limerick Forest web sites and can be printed off) you will see that all the trails are numbered or named. The trails that have names are for EMS services (meaning that you can drive a fire truck, police car or ambulance down them and will have room to turn around). The reason for the names and not numbers is that EMS blue numbers do not like to be connected to other numbers. But, the named trails don’t have just any old names. They were given names that have a long history with the land. Most of the names go back to the families that came from Europe and settled here. These families cleared the land, worked the farm, but it’s hard to feed a family when your land is sand. The only thing that grew well here were weeds and pine trees. Most of this land was taken or given back to the government for unpaid back taxes. Now, 60 or 70 years later, we have a manmade forest.

Grant Money Thanks to the hard work of Mike Hillier and Ken Hoeverman from the OFTR, we received $5000.00 for arrows. Their work was done over a year ago and last fall the arrows arrived with the blessing of the United Counties of Leeds and Grenville. Over the next few weeks all of the trails will be arrowed. The arrowing has started and we have roughly a third of the job done. The arrowing should be completed in the fall.

All arrows will have: 1) The UCLG and OFTR logo 2) “Warning! USE FOREST AND ALL TRAILS AT YOUR OWN RISK” 3) Four numbers which all have a meaning: a) The first number = the area you are riding in. Area 1 = the south block by the pit parking. Area 2 = Y parking area. b) The second number = width of the trail in meters i.e. 1 = 1 meter, 2 = 2 meters etc. c) The third and fourth numbers = the trail that your on. Even numbered trails are on the west side of the main road. Odd numbered trails are on the east side of the main road. ∆

GET LOST!

(with Jeff)

Jeff Akert is our resident GPS guru. In a series of articles he’s going to go over buying the right GPS for your needs, how to set it up properly and use it to it’s full potential.

GPS 101: Which one do I buy? Why do you need a GPS? Well there are several reasons, including: • To find out where you have been riding • To locate yourself on a map • To give rescue authorities your location so they can find you when you’re injured or broken down (assuming you have communication). • To direct you on a specific route or track. • To look cool and show people that you have fully entered the 21st century and grasped its technology! There are certainly a myriad of choices out there on the market, but if you are considering a GPS for use on your trail bike, it does limit the choices a bit. A number of GPS units out there that will say “for motorcycle use” but these tend to be directed towards the road rider and can be bulky and heavy. My criteria for a useful off-road dirt bike type GPS are the following (ranked in order from most important to least): • Waterproof • Small and lightweight • Easy to read screen (the larger the better) • Intuitive menu system and well laid out buttons • High sensitivity receiver • Electronic compass (shows your direction without having to move) • Good value With these criteria in mind, I will introduce a few choices that fit the bill, and make some comments on their suitability. Garmin products seem to have the best choice and the lion’s share of the market, so I will focus on these (prices listed are estimations).

Garmin Map76 CXs This model has been around for quite a while and has a good following in both the off-road and on-road bike crowds. It has all the criteria mentioned above and it floats in water (for those that find some of the mud holes a bit deep, you can find your bike by looking for the


floating GPS). The unit is a bit larger than some of the newer ones, but the buttons are relatively large and easy to operate with your gloves on. The screen is slightly larger than the following units.

Price: $290 Garmin Map60 CXs This unit is small and rugged. It has a decent size colour screen, high sensitivity receiver and electronic compass (similar to the Map76 above). This is the GPS that I use and find it ideal for what I need. It is smaller size and has better button layout than the Map76.

Price: $380 Garmin Etrex Vista HCx I know a number of people that use the Etrex family of GPS and are very happy with this model. It is considerably smaller and generally cheaper than the Map60 and Map76 units. I don’t necessarily like the buttons and toggle system as it takes longer to find the proper screen. Also, the toggle is a bit sensitive when trying to get to the screen of choice.

Price: $280

Garmin Oregon 400tc This is a brand new unit and is different in that there are no buttons to fiddle with. The interface is like the iPhone or iPod Touch, where the screen is touch sensitive. You can scroll through the menus by moving your finger across the screen. It has all the criteria as above, with the ability to view the preloaded topographic information in 3D.

Price: $570.

All of these units come with software for your PC that lets you upload and download between it and the GPS unit. They all have USB cables that provide the connectivity. The Oregon apparently has a wireless option that transfers data without having to physically hook up. One thing to note is that each of the two families of GPS above (Map family and Etrex family) have lower end models that don’t have the electronic compass or just have a shades of grey screen. These will save you anywhere from $50 to $150. For a good selection of GPS and a great way to compare the various models, head to www.gpscity.ca. This website has a Canadian warehouse based in Alberta, has some of the best prices and ships very quickly if you decide to buy. So now we have our choice narrowed down with a few units here between $280 and $570. In the next installment of GET LOST will will assume we have made our choice and bought the Map60 CSx. We’ll go through some of the basics of setting up the unit for a first ride in the bush. That’s all for now, get lost! ∆


TEK VEST REVIEW review by Dallas Shannon

TekVest is letting the BMA take their Off-Road Rally vest for a long term product review. We’re going to see to it that the vest take a serious beating over the riding season. We will have updates as to how the vest is holding up, what we love, what we like and what we would want improved. Other riders with TekVests will also weigh in. Here my initial thoughts...

I beat the TekVest like it stole something. It’s not pretty. After four rides, one in the pouring rain, I have not washed the vest and I have done zero maintenance. My goal this season is to treat the vest badly, every single ride. The only “care” I offer the vest? A day or two after riding I take the vest out of my wretched, dank gear bag and hang it up by the loop on the collar so it can air out. That’s it. Last issue I talked about the features of the vest, all of which I felt were well designed. I am pleasantly surprised to report that there have been no failures. All of the zippered pockets have worked well, the snap for the “backpack” or hydration pocket has not failed and the Velcro on the shoulder pads has stayed together without a problem. During rides, I yank the zippers open with one hand to access stale snacks and a cloth to dry my goggles. I also close the zippers with one hand which makes accessing the pockets convenient. I’ve taken the vest on nasty, gnarly, all-day single track rides and also on a dual-sport weekend. It performed admirably in both environments. The question I get most often when wearing the vest is - “Is it hot?”. Half-way though my first ride I would have said yes but I was given a tip from another rider during that ride on how to get better airflow. He told me that if I unzip the front zipper 3/4 of the way down it would greatly increase the airflow. I tried that and he was right. The moving air was pumped into my torso around and around my rib cage and into my back. I found that if I moved my torso slightly when my speed was up I could control the way the air circulated around my body and I could really get a nice breeze. I’ve only crash tested the vest once and it was a simple tip over on an off-camber hill. I lost power on my way up and landed on my back with the bike on top of me. I didn’t feel a thing and was most concerned that I popped my Camelbak bladder. Everything was intact and I was fine. Other riders in the club have been entrusting their protection to TekVest for many years. They have wanted to comment on their experiences so in the next few issues I will include what they have to say as well as my on-going comments.

Ahh, that’s better. A bit of dirt adds character...

Larry Murray’s Thoughts Back in 2001 I had the opportunity to go to Michigan to ride with Ross Lenox, Ed Strohak and Warren Thaxter (all true legends of our sport). It was a trip put together by Warren for Inside Motorcycles and the report is a mustread if you have it. We were to test 4 motorcycles, 4 GPS units, and riding gear. This was the first time I put on a TekVest, with its full complement of accessories: four pockets (two zippered, two cargo), shoulder pads, drink system, plus cargo room. It also had a front zipper, plus a clip! So you can ride with zipper part way down. Last, it has reflective strips for night visibility (yes dirt bikes have lights). There are so many things I like about the TekVest. The real story behind the TekVest is its safety elements. It covers much more of you body and has saved my upper body more times than I should need to tell you. If you fall off, you need a TekVest. The way the vest absorbs the force of your body hitting anything is the real motivation to buy one. Have you seen the TV ad where everything is covered in bubble wrap so no one can get hurt? Well it’s not quite like that but it is a key component of my riding gear. I can’t see myself going back to a sheet of plastic wrapped around my body where the manufacturer spends more time and money on what type of decals to put on it than the safety of the rider in it. Some will tell you that they are hot and a little heavy. Maybe yes, maybe no. My helmet and boots are also heavy and hotter then I would like but I would never ride without them.


GET PAID TO WRITE! *

We are always looking for submissions or story ideas...

EMAIL! offroad.newsletter@gmail.com

Larry knows that a dirty vest is a happy vest. Larry and Al in Virginia

I understand there is a demo vest you can try, plus I have two and will loan them to anyone who would like to try it. ∆

* Are you kidding me? We don’t ACTUALLY pay anybody...

Above is the new BMA business card. The club has printed 1000 double sided, full colour cards so it’s members (you!) can “recruit” potential new members while on the trail. We’re going to be spreading them around to as many people as we can. Club executives should have some so please don’t be shy on asking where you can get them. Also don’t be shy on spreading them around. The more members we have the more influence and power we wield. Northumberland Forest has fallen, don’t think it can’t happen here. ∆ “There is strength in numbers - go forth and spread thy message!” - unknown BMA Member

FREE DEMO! - The BMA is doing a long-term test review of the TekVest. See page 14 for the first installment of our review. If you are are a BMA member and you are interested in being given a TekVest to demo, please email: offroad.newsletter@gmail.com


Head instructor Cecile Gambin’s got what it takes... clearly.

2009

photo: Bill O’Neil

SCORRA WOMENS TRAINING DAY The rain did little to dampen the spirits of the 20-ish women who showed up on June 28 for the SCORRA (Simcoe County Off-Road Riders Association) Women’s Ride Day. This event was organized to give women a chance to learn/practice basic riding skills, meet other riders and have some fun. Not yet comfortable on my bike, I was apprehensive about whether I was competent enough to even show up for the event. This anxiety only heightened when I arrived that morning and saw confident, smiling women milling around their huge bikes. I gulped and cursed myself (and my husband) for consenting to this. My husband pushed me from the edge of the action into the group of women like a 5-year-old starting kindergarten, and I knew that I had to suck it up and brave out the day. I desperately hoped that my ability to stop and start the bike, clumsily change gears and go over very small bumps would be enough to go unnoticed in the crowd…but I was

story: Kaveri Gupta photos: Kurt Busman

skeptical. Slowly, however, more women wearing nervous grins like my own started showing up and I started to relax. Admittedly, I was hoping they would call the whole thing off since it was pouring rain and I had never ridden in the rain. But these childish wishes were quickly dashed when Cecile, our lead instructor for the day, gathered us around. “I don’t want to hear any complaints about the rain today. If you can do what we are going to do in the rain, you can definitely do it when it’s dry,” she opened up with. Jeez. I was in deep shit.


concentrated on relaxing. The track wasn’t that tough, and I was going at a speed that I was comfortable with. I did make a wrong turn soon after entering the track, but was quickly rescued by a sympathetic expert and lead around in the right direction. I lost her promptly because of how slow I was, but I actually made it around the track without any major mishaps. There was some tight single-track, hairpin turns and berms and I was elated to be able to maneuver my bike through it all.

Cecile introduced the other instructors (Vicky, Jaime, Tammy and Allison) while we stood under the protection of a tent from the rain. She then said that we would start with a warm-up ride around the track and called the introductory meeting to an end.

This is clearly a cliché, but after the warm-up, the rest of the day was not nearly as terrifying as I feared. We were randomly broken up into smaller groups, each with their own instructor. The plan was to do different exercises for the morning with short water/instruction breaks in between.

What??!! A warmup ride around the track?? I had never ridden on a track. And some of the jumps were way larger than what I had practiced on at home.

Once the smaller group exercises began, I completely relaxed. I was in Jaime’s group and she was awesome – kind, forgiving and helpful. My groupmates were at all different levels and I was surprised to find out I wasn’t the only newbie.

Does this raincoat match my outfit?

With another plaintive glance over at my husband (who grinned and shrugged his shoulders), I climbed on and proceeded to deep breathe while repeatedly stalling my bike. Shit. The other girls slowly started taking off around me and I couldn’t even get my bike going!! That was the only thing I could do!!

That pylon will not bite, I promise.

Cecile ran over to me and I was convinced she was going to kick me out of the event. But instead, she wanted to make sure that my bike was working ok. Unfortunately, with her standing there, my bike happily

roared to life and she told me to get going.

We started off with maneuvering our bikes thru pylons (easy) while standing up (hard). Cecile had explained at the beginning the Getting the hang of standing figure 8’s. Legs burning! importance of learning to ride standing up, so the rule for the day was that our butts were not to hit the seats. Next, we moved on to exercises practicing breaking, shifting up and down in short distances, clutch control and figure 8’s. We finished off the morning with some games like a “slow race” (I lost everytime).

“I am a total beginner,” I explained, apologetically. “It doesn’t matter”, she replied. “It’s not about speed, just get around the track.”

Lunchtime felt like heaven. I was riding high on the endorphins from the physical work-out of the morning and as I sat in my wet gear on the cold concrete floor, covered in

Well, at least I could go slow. I shouldn’t break too many bones if I am going slow, right? However, the quiet, idyllic, grassy field where I normally practice was a far cry from the muddy, slippery track I was slowly steering my bike towards. I was terrified that I was in over my head. I started puttering around the track, and as I did so, The slow race, which I lost everytime. Nobody said I was allowed to use the brake!


mud and eating burgers with my new friends, I realized I was having a great time. In the afternoon each group worked their way around the course learning how to tackle specific obstacles such as berms, jumps, and endurocross-style tires. I thought this was awesome since it was what I was looking for – specific instruction on how to handle my bike over varying terrain. We learned how to accelerate into a jump, adjust our body position during the jump and weight the suspension properly.

Is this my rear brake?

Cecile instructed our group in the afternoon with the help of Vicky. Cecile’s expectations were high and I tried desperately to please her. When practicing the tabletop, she wanted us in third-gear before we hit the hill, standing up and attempting to get some air.

(Uncharacteristically of me, I actually wanted to get some air at this point).

tors and cold beverages. I would like to thank: a) Gary Shackleton, Don Moore and SCORRA for organizing an excellent event, b) Cecile, Jaime, Vicky, Tammy and Allison for their excellent instruction and, c) My new friends Ang (who pumps her fist as much as me) and Sandra for their friendliness and jokes. ∆ Kaveri can likely be found sipping wine, contemplating the freshly cut lawn and trying to find neutral. Email her: offroad.newsletter@gmail.com

Tammy speaks, they listen.

Though I wasn’t successful in getting air, the day did do wonders to my confidence on the bike, which is clearly the point. I left with the desire to perfect many skills: shifting gears while standing, clutch control, weighting the pegs, lifting my head and looking as far ahead as I can…the list is long. The day ended with prizes for the girls, gifts for our instruc-

Me and my new friend Ang.

Pink is the new black.


FALLING DOWN Confessions of a True Beginner

by Barry Isherwood

Barry and his sons just started riding and are writing a monthly column on what’s it’s like to be green as the grass. This month Barry recalls what it’s like considering a first bike (or two).

CHOOSING A DIRT BIKE

Ok, so you’ve made the decision that you are going to try this dirt biking thing but don’t know how to decide which dirt bike is right for you…. There are lots of colours to choose from. There are the blue ones. We learned on those and they seemed OK. We saw a few yellow and lime green ones out there but not many. Maybe there’s a reason? There are the red ones. They have been around for as long as I can remember and still seem to be going strong. Then there are these orange ones. I don’t remember seeing those when I was a kid. KTM? Hmmm. Must be some Asian knock-off. What? Made in Austria? Skis I could understand, but dirt bikes? Well, there are lots of them out there, so there must be something to it.

son and I are about 5’5” (with a 30” inseam) and this bike was all that seemed to fit. I still can’t figure out how you guys operate, let alone mount those behemoths with 39” seat heights. How do you swing your leg over? So, did we make the right choice? We think so. At least for now. Believe me, we have already dropped them a number of times and they (and for the most part we) keep coming up smiling, though sometimes the restarting can give your kickstart leg a work out (curse you guys with electric start!).

Well, for us it amounted to a bunch of research, a bit of discussion with those in the know, the ever-present cost factor, and just some common sense. As I noted in the last issue, we ended up going with two used Honda CRF150Fs. Why Hondas? Well, there were a number of reasons. First was cost. At about $2k each we weren’t out too much if we decided to give up dirt biking for croquet. Then there was durability. These bikes are built like tanks. We knew we would be falling down and the bikes needed to be able to handle it. Kind of like dad’s Chevy – may not have been the prettiest or sexiest but at least you could rely on it. Why 150s? Physical size was the key for us. Both my

Ok, ok, it’s an R not an F - use your imagination.

One of these days we hope to be one of the KTM Kool Kids. But for now, we are content. “Alex, put

that KTM brochure away!” No regrets, and lots of fun. Isn’t that what it’s all about anyway? Next month…Gearing up! ∆


story: Michael Lobodzinski photos: Anthony Kerr

What is Rally Raid you ask? Back in the fall of 2008 a small group of us wanted to create a competition based event where riders would navigate through 1000 kilometers via GPS waypoints.

Word around the campfire says this dragon breathes fire.

However, our dream came crashing down. The insurance and logistics for such an event were well beyond our means. I nearly gave up hope. Instead, we scaled down our expectations to just the basics: camping and riding. What resulted was something greater than we could have imagined.

The Sum is Greater than the Parts As it turns out, we had gained an audience: ADVrider, ODSC, BTR, KLRrider, Stromtrooper, GTArider, RidAdventure and various other websites. It was the enthusiasm from the online community that fueled the fire. This led us to stake out the terrain a month in advance, plotting as much GPS datum as we could ride. The idea being we would provide a GPS “web” of routes to choose from. This created an interesting concept, where riders could choose their own adventure. It also alleviated the need for event insurance. As a result, the event was free! And there you have it. In the week leading up to the event, I witnessed the online forums explode with organization, planning and plotting – I’m

sure the FBI and CSIS were curious what we were up to!

Show Time The weekend kicked off for me on Friday afternoon with a sublime ride along back-roads from Toronto to the Desert Lake Resort, which is just north of Kingston. Upon arrival, the rain came pouring down that night, unleashing its fury on a few unsuspecting campers. As I later found out, the ground became so saturated that a few bikes tipped over as their kickstands sank. One bike in particular landed a few inches from one camper’s head. Add to that, picking up a 500lb bike in your underwear, while it’s pouring rain, at 3am, makes for


an interesting night. In fact, it rained so much, I heard many stories of floating objects in people’s tents, from goggles to socks. Alas, this was a blessing in disguise. The Riding Gods were conditioning the terrain for us, resulting in prime traction and zero dust. Saturday morning’s breakfast buffet was magnificent: puffy pancakes, fluffy eggs and juicy sausages. It set the precedent for the remainder of the day. After a brief riders meeting, the maps were thrown atop left over maple syrup and nodding heads prevailed. The time had arrived to light them beasts, stakeout them hills and lay claim to them curves. Imagine a 400km long supermoto track with spectacular scenery. Riders aboard everything from CRF230’s to a BMW GS1200’s were about to test their mettle.

Not Africa, Ontario...really.

Suck, Squish, Spark…. BOOM With billboards whizzing past, looking more like team pit-boards, there were many occasions where I had both wheels of my fire-breathing KTM 950 off the ground. Standing atop the pegs, leaning forward and shifting through the gears like Jonah Street, all this not a tick over the posted the limit. Where else could you find terrain like this? Rally Rally Rally Raid - YEEEEEEEEE HAAAAAAAAAA AAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The group with whom I rode for the duration of the day exemplified endurance and skill. I was shocked that a group of eight riders could move in unison like that. Never mind the fact that one GS1200 had street tires while another was limited to 400cc. We were a team – a team on a mission to conquer all three parts of the “long GPS route”.

Not Texas! Ontario...really.

The two “incidents” we fell victim to saw a KTM 950SM crash into a boulder the size of a car. Amazingly, the rider avoided serious injury by somehow flying OVER the boulder - as his bike The food was EXCELLENT...Mmmmm. parked itself. The second incident was met with much less fan fare, a flat tire on a


KLR. However, all eight riders turned around and made short work of getting our teammate back on boil.

solitude in your helmet was a chance to realize that opportunities such as this cannot be missed.

With a mid-way stop in Tweed, we fueled up with gas and food. More Rally Raid action continued with lofty crests, tight apex’s, banked dirt roads and unbelievable scenery. The stories are still circulating the various web forums, from tales of water logged bikes to stretches of rolling-coaster dirt roads. The critics were unanimous in their response – the terrain was epic!

The breakfast buffet on Sunday morning was the final installment of the $20 meal plan offered by the resort, which was worth its weight in gold. It was during those final cups of coffee that I took the

Later that evening, the bench racing ensued over a hearty turkey dinner buffet that hit the Not the turkey buffet - hold the gravy please.

spot. That night, I could finally wipe the dirt off my face but not the smile. The friends I made this weekend will share an everlasting place in my memories.

chance to shake the hands of most everyone who helped make the event happen, for their enthusiasm fueled mine.

The Final Stretch As an ode to the shear brilliance of Saturday’s ride, the 6am offering on Sunday was a chance to wind things down. The several riders who managed to shake off the hangover were treated to the sun igniting the morning dew in an explosion of surrealism.

Ahhh...here’s the turkey buffet....although a bit soggy.

Our collective sense of adventure brought us together; we made new friends, we explored new terrain and we will share everlasting memories. Rally Raid was an Adventure, from beginning to end! Don’t miss the Fall Colours Ride: October 3-4th, 2009 at the Wolf’s Den Lodge in Algonquin Park.

DEFINITELY not the turkey buffet.

Rolling through peaks and valleys and along still lakes, the

The Rally Raid would also like to thank Ryan Heritage for all of his help organizing the event/location and Dragan Grubesic for the Website – www.grubesic.com ∆

Sunday morning crew - photo by Ooober-Moto


BMA 2009 EVENT SCHEDULE BMA Club trail ride, Calabogie, Ont.

May 31

Watch the club web site for developments. This is a great area…lots of scenery and varied terrain suitable for most skill levels. Dualsport route is also being offered. For information call Doug McNeil at (613) 825-1444, mcneild@rogers.com

2 Hour harescramble, Woody’s, Perth

June 7

BMA/Woody’s Cycles club hare scrambles our annual spring pilgrimage into the forest. Usually a dust free event …there may or not be any mud. Always fun and challenging. Classes include youth, previous race experience with no bikes under 65cc,junior, intermediate, veteran (over 39 years old) or so and pro. Registration starts at 9am and practice till 11:15 am. Racing starts a noon .For info call Carolin or Woody @ 613-267-6861.or woody@woodys-cycles.com

Limerick Forest Kid’s Ride

July 12

Limerick Forest Family Ride. For kids of all ages, non-competitive, and focused on fun. Trails as always well marked for different riding levels. Bikes must be quiet, plated and legal. Sign in 9-10, start time 10:30 for more info call Mike Hillier 613-258-1164 or Larry Murry 613-926-2522

BMA Fun Day/Field Day at Woody’s

August 16

BMA Family Fun day @KTM Acres in Perth A day to kick back, ride, relax, play m/c games, and skill contests and really get to know other folks in the club .If you are so inclined we will have the property well arrowed up for the various skill levels for trail riding during the day. Bring a lunch and bug repellent. More details will follow. For info call Marlene Bleau 613-678-1676 mbleau@hotmail.com

Calabogie Boogie Trail Ride,

September 12-13

This is our clubs premier event of the year with 2 days of prime off road riding, arrowed routes to suit everyone from newbie to pro. Trailheads marked for mileage and difficulty, some dualsport friendly trails as well .One and 2-day packages, pre-registration are very advisable for this one. Watch the club website for updates and info. Pre-registration available thru Woody’s Cycles 613-267- 6861

BMA 4-hour harescramble, Woody’s

October 25

The Colin Snider Memorial 4 hour Team Scrambles. This is an annual favourite, with a low impact racing, format with an iron man class for the hardcore, a 2-man team competition and 3 to 4 man teams competing for individual honours. It is set on a course meant to be fun but reasonably challenging. A fundraiser for local charities and an excellent event for a family group to have… a really fun day and get some racing experience to boot No bikes smaller than 65cc call for info Carolin or Woody 613-267-6861

FOR A HARDCOPY, PLEASE PRINT THIS PAGE OF THE NEWSLETTER


E C A R B M E ! N I A P E H T

ENDURO story: Matthew McAnanama photos: Sarah Moffet

An enduro is not a trail ride and should not be easy. Your physical and mental limitations will be tested. An enduro is unpredictable and exciting. If you are riding your first enduro, at some point during the event, you will ask yourself, “Why God, Why?!?”. After you finish your last lap you will be exhausted. Your body will ache in places you didn’t even know existed. You will load your bike and head home, thinking that was your first and last enduro. But then a strange thing will happen a few days later. You will realize that even though you didn’t win, or even come close, you pushed yourself beyond what you previously thought possible. You were able to cross obstacles at the end of the enduro that you were falling over at the beginning. You hit a wall of exhaustion and found a way to push on. Maybe it wasn’t that bad after all. Then you start thinking about the next event and how you might want to enter. Eventually, all you can think about is firing up your bike and blasting onto to the trails in hopes of blowing your previous results into oblivion! You are now an enduro rider.

On July 26, 2009 Burnt River Off-Road Facility was host to the first Dirty Bikes Amateur Enduro. The event utilized the World Enduro Canada rules. There was a 20km loop that consisted of three test sections, Extreme, Enduro and Cross. All classes had to ride the loop a total of 3 times. The goal was to create an event that would challenge all levels of amateur rider. In this regard, it was very successful. The higher skilled riders had little difficulty completing the event but were challenged

when riding the test sections as fast as possible. On the other hand, the true novice enduro rider found it tough to finish the entire event under the time limitations.

Due to rain the previous evening, the course was a little wet and slippery. Nevertheless, after the first lap the conditions in the test sections were absolutely perfect. Unfortunately, there were a few issues with some riders missing arrows and getting turned around in the first enduro test. In the past, an error such as that would have ruined the rider’s day. However, with the WEC style format, I was able to make the decision that the first Enduro Test results be removed from the scoring. Problem solved.

The Extreme Test This test was a man-made arena cross-style test. The goal was to use local terrain to design the test. Rocks and trees were used, and lots of them. Rock paths, a variety of log crossings, small, loose gravel traverses and tires were all part of this test. The challenge was to make it tough enough to push the top amateur riders but to also make it passable for the novice competitor. With a combination of tough obstacles and proper placement, it was a challenge for all. It was hard for the top riders to go fast and difficult for the novice to get through. The riders were then routed onto a 12km double track trail that would take them to the enduro test. The trail was not easy with the rock and slippery mud. It was very important for a competitor to conserve energy in the transition trails. Riding smoothly on the pegs was the key.

The Enduro Test This test was roughly 6km in length and consisted of 20% open terrain and 80% tight, gnarly single track. Not hard to ride but hard to ride fast. This section was 75% new trail


with rocks and roots being the most loathed obstacles. This section was my pride and joy and took many hours to construct. In the end, it was well worth it because this enduro test separated the fast guys from the really fast guys. After the enduro test there was a short transition section to the cross test. I am sure many riders were not happy to come around a corner to see another test so close to the mayhem of the last test.

The Cross Test A MX track is not required to run a cross test. At this event we ran the test on trail that ran through an open field. Lots of turns, dips and whoops. There were some fast turns and some slow ones. Many riders enjoyed this test as it really rewarded the fast guy but was very easy for the novice. The cross test ended at the pit area. With a 1.5hr lap limit (riders were averaging 45-60mins to run a lap) there was lots of time to gas up, fix your bike and fuel your body before the next lap. However, should you encounter a problem on the lap, such as a flat tire or getting turned around, you still had enough time to finish the lap. As I circled the course and pits I saw many tired riders who just kept going until the end or until they just could not go any further. I was very impressed with the professionalism of all competitors who did not complain or whine but rather put their heads down and rode. Enduro riders are amazing competitors. They make all the hard work of creating an event like this worthwhile. This is evident in quotes found on various forums. “This was one of the best enduros I’ve done and I’ve done most of them at least once. The WEC format is far superior in my opinion. Fastest rider wins with enough untimed trail to beat you up along the way and still give you time to relax between laps. I had 30 minutes between laps to gas up, eat, tighten bolts etc. Then BAM, throttle on.” Class B rider “Was that awesome or what!!!! I love the format for WEC, this was my first time ever racing an enduro and I loved it.... The course set up was fantastic, the special tests were excellent…I didn’t think I would enjoy the cross test as much as I did, it was a real blast. The extreme test was just right, not too crazy but certainly a challenge…Anyone that missed this event missed a great one. Can’t wait for next

years series” Class A Rider “It was a great event. One that could have been done by all of us. You had an hour and a half to finish a loop, and most of us finished a loop under an hour. That gives you a lot of time to recover for the next one… there’s no pressure to gun it like in a scramble. You ride only against yourself. You can’t really tell if the guys on your class are faster or slower. You can also stop and rest before the specials. No obligation to go in the minute you get there. You got timed only on the specials, so you could ride at any pace on the rest of the loop and recover. I think most of us stopped before the coss special because it was so close to the enduro one. I like this format. Makes me feel not as slow as I really am...I had a ton of fun.” 40+ Class Rider “This race was a hoot. The enduro test was spectacular… Kudos to everyone involved. It was just tough enough to still be fun.” 50+ Class Rider So folks there you have it. The first Dirty Bikes Amateur Enduro was a complete success. If you have never competed in an enduro, watch out for more events next year. Challenge yourself, you may be surprised what you are capable of doing. Oh, and for those competitors that were scared away by the impending “doom” of the rain…not only did it not rain but I actually got sunburn. Enduro riders ride, rain or shine. ∆

Results - Class Awards A - Advanced 1 DMITRY TSVETKOV 2 ROB MARTIN 3 DAVID JANZEN B - Intermediate 1 CONNOR BROGAN 2 JASON ARMSTRONG 3 JAKE TUSTIN C - Novice 1 CHARLES PASCOE 2 RICHARD ROESIER 3 JOSHUA OLAR Veteran (40+) 1 BARRY BILLINGS 2 DAVID MIGNON Super Veteran (50+) 1 LANCE MATTHEWS 2 KEITH BILLINGS 3 DAVID PHIFER

KTM KTM GG KTM KTM KTM YAM HON YAM KTM KTM HSQ KTM KTM

Special Awards- Dirty Bikes Tough Rider ERICK OLAR

HON

Prizes 1st in each class – Free entry to Parry Sound CEC ($100 value) 2nd in each class - $50 gift certificate at A Vicious Cycle 3rd in each class - $25 gift certificate at A Vicious Cycle Dirty Bikes Tough Rider – One-on-One training day with Jake Stapleton

Canadian Enduro Championship (CEC) • September 12 & 13 - Labelle, Quebec • September 19 & 20 - Parry Sound, Ontario


GET DIRTWISE! story and photos by Eric McSweeney

Several years ago while on my first club ride at Calabogie, I noticed the ease with which fellow riders traversed trail obstacles. My thought was “watch and do what they do, and you too shall become as proficient a rider as they are”. A few more rides, and I came to realize that my equipment was a partially limiting factor for my novice performance (or a good rationale to explain at home why a KTM would be a good investment). A couple of ride upgrades later, and Woody’s recent Colin Snider Memorial Hare Scramble, made it pretty clear that the bike is no longer holding this rider back – the rider is.

Watts to learn? So, back to school I went and attended the Shane Watts DirtWise Riding Academy. This is the second year that Shane has brought his off-road academy to Canada, at the edge of the Ganaraska Forest. Shane is an Aussie, with some credible achievements: • Six Time Australian Enduro Champion • Australian 500cc Motocross Champion • 1997 World Enduro Champion

• 1998 International Six Day Enduro Overall Champion (on a 125cc!) • 2000 Grand National Cross Country Champion Shane has built the academy around four key principles: 1. Body Positioning and understanding the effect it has on the motorcycle. 2. Throttle/Clutch Control & Coordination and being able to put the power to the ground. 3. Balance and the ability to maintain and regain your balance. 4. Confidence and your ability to push your limits. The two-day course wisely starts with the basic skills, and then later links them together into more complex drills that simulate trail conditions. Typically with each skill, Shane will: Ø Explain basics of the particular skill


Ø Explain how the skill is applied in trail circumstances and why it is important Ø Explain the technical/geometric aspects of the skills - for example, compression of forks before launching a rolling wheelie over a log, or rider weight distribution in different circumstances Ø Demonstrate the skills, both the right way, and the wrong/less efficient way Ø Review the key elements of each skill after his demonstration

a hill, how to stop when you are not going to make it, turning on a hill) Ø Cornering, and tackling different cornering situations, entry/exits

Riders then practice the skill in a controlled environment where other riding factors encountered in a trail situation are eliminated. Sufficient time to be broken of old habits and develop better ones is a primary success factor in this course. Interestingly, each drill is accessible at a different level for different levels of rider, so everyone gets something out of it. In addition: Ø Shane watches each rider perform the skill several times, and then offers positive support, encouragement, and enforcement of correctly performing the skill, while offering specific advice for improvement, or corrections as required. Ø He then watches you to ensure you break your old habits, and incorporate the suggested changes. Ø Once you have mastered the basics of the skill, he encourages you to move to a more advanced level within the skill drill, or to complete the drill more quickly. Ø Once the group (20 max.) has completed the drills, he offers the group positive reinforcement as well as observations on techniques that will require continuous improvement. Ø After drill exercises, the new skills are frequently put into effect on a single track trail beside the training area to further reinforce “new habits”.

Eric...er...Shane shows us some fundamentals.

The most positive aspect of this course included the fact that Shane quickly picks up on your skill level in each drill, and gently (at first) encourages you to move beyond your comfort zone to a more advanced level. In addition, the

The skills we learned included: Ø Body positioning related to different circumstances Ø Starts and stops, including stops from high speeds and braking Ø Slow riding (builds balance and skills in feathering controls) Ø Stoppies and wheelies (four different types – three of which are essential riding skills applicable under different riding conditions) Ø Riding on the straight and narrow (24 feet of 8” X 8”) – harder than you think! Ø Log crossing, including how to cross a log when you are parallel to it Ø Downhills and hill climbing (including how to start on

What can we say? Eric is happy. You would be too.

course is designed to be accessible by riders after different skill levels, novices will learn proper way of doing things before forming bad habits, advanced riders will learn the finer points of technique improvement, to push their limit, or save seconds on their lap times. Last, Shane provides rider specific guidance for advancement. Hopefully, Shane is back again next year as I still have a lot to learn and plan on being there. For more info, please see www.shanewatts.com ∆


Wise sage Larry Murray gives us some VET trail tips...

What you need to repair a flat tire on the trail:

valve core and the rim lock (place either the valve core or rim lock at 12 o’clock and the other should be between 4 o’clock and 6:00).

Patch kit/ new tube Air supply Tire irons Tools Wrenches (valve core, stem nut, rim lock, axel nut) The best way to repair a flat tire on the trail is to do it RIGHT NOW. The faster you get started the easier it will be. A flat tire will run very hot and a hot tire is easier to change. Looking at it or talking about it will never fix it. It’s been my experience that if you don’t learn to change a tire yourself, someone else will repair it for you – and that is not ideal.

Removing the wheel: 1) To remove the wheel from bike you have two choices: lay it down on the ground, or find something to hold it up (a rock, a stump, a riding buddy). If you are fast at repairing the tire, your buddy should be able to balance the bike on its side stand.

2) Remove the wheel from your bike. 3) Place a rag under the bearing on the ground, disc side up. 4) Remove the valve core (you want all the air out of the tube). 5) Remove the valve stem nut and back off the rim lock nut as far as you can. Brake the bead, freeing the tire from the rim. 6) Push the tire bead into the center to the rim. This should be done at the greatest distance possible from both the

You should be pushing the tire bead into the rim with your knees or foot. Pushing the valve stem and rim lock inwards, squeeze the bead of the tire inwards. Start with your tire iron at 12 o’clock and work clockwise around the tire leap-frogging the two tire irons about 5-6” apart. The tire should come off the rim with little work. If you have a little oil you can put it on the bead to aid its removal (water will also work).

Pull the tube all the way out of the tire. Do not try to fix it with the valve stem still in the wheel. We will reverse this part when putting the tire back on. If you are repairing the tube, remove it. I like to carry a spare front H-D tube and will install it in the front or rear. I have gone hundreds on kilometers with a front tube in the rear tire (note: if putting a front tube in the rear make sure


getting the valve stem into the rim. I carry a special tool: a wire cable with a threaded stud the same size as the valve core. I feed it through the rim, thread it into the valve stem and just pull the tube valve stem into the wheel, start the stem nut and remove the LarryTool! It works like a dream! The only thing left to do is put the tub into the tire and

it’s a heavy duty tube and blow it up to 20 psi).

place the tire back on the rim. This is done by reversing the removal step, taking care not to pinch the tube. A little oil or water will help lube the tire and tube and make this job fast and effortless. Replace air at 15 to 18 psi.

With the tube removed and the hole(s) found you need to decide if it was a pinch or a nail that caused the hole(s). If you think it was a nail, you should remove the tire completely off the rim and check it for a nail (mark the tire where the valve stem was, so you can line up the hole in the tube with the tire, this should show you were the nail is).

Patching a tube: Start with a good quality patch kit. Kits are only good for two years, so keep a fresh one with you. (Many times I have had a kit with old dried up glue). The trick to making the patch stick has three parts: getting the repair area clean, good glue and tacking your time. I was told that after applying the glue, stop and have a smoke – this will allow the glue to set and permit the patch to stick. I don’t smoke so I carry a 21” H-D tube. The only trouble you might have with the reassembly is

After replacing the wheel on your bike check your BRAKES! They will need pumping two or three times. Now let’s go play! We can talk about the great job you did back at the truck. ∆


Volume 1, Issue 3