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My First Dual Ride.....What a CRASH !!!

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Hi Folks,

My first posting here so i would like to start off by saying this is really cool site. Between this site and my 200 motorcycle magazines that the wife wants to throw out (man..she doesnt understand you have to reread those suckers a 100 times each), I should be able to make it through the week. I live for riding and most weekends i click off around 200-400 miles of desert type riding.

Now to the topic of this discussion. I decided to see whats up with this dual thing and did all the legal blah blah blah to my drz 400e. I did my first dual ride a couple months back and was so excited that i couldnt sleep all friday night. I arrived and noticed a guy that i went riding with before. He suggested i ride with this other gentlemen who only takes the "hard" route and pretty much makes the rest of the pack eat major dust. My first thought is why would anyone pay good money and take the "easy" way. Anyway, this other guy seemed nice enough even if he was at a major disavantage on his xr 600. I had a blast, we diced for about 50 miles before i decided to kick in the drz afterburner and boogie to the lunch stop. After lunch we filled the tanks and took off for part two. About 20 minutes into the ride, i'm at the top of this mountain and see the xr rider at the bottom looking at his bike. I rode down and offered help. After taking apart half his bike including the carb, we found the culprit. The little clamp had come off his slider needle. Now i figure i'm over an hour behind so i light it up big. Even my dust is eating dust. I was just about out of the last "hard" section when all i remember is seeing a blur of red and then another blur of red. Let me change that to a SPLAT of red followed by another SPLAT of red. I'm guessing i hit head on with one xr 600 and then was tossed right in the second xr 400 riding right behind him. I remember laying on the ground and having that "i cant get air" thing followed by stars. Then i did the "lets see if all the body parts work" routine. I think it was pretty safe to say i broke my ankle, wrist and a few ribs. Now i get these two guys who are redder then honda fire engine red breathing down my neck. One guy was screaming about my speed while the other was yelling about me being on the left side of the trail. Come to find out these 2 riders took the "easy" route all day and after finishing the ride, decided to ride backwards on the roll chart and check out the "hard" route. I'm thinking i can tape my wrist and ribs, sleep all night in my boot so my ankle doesnt swell, find a place to replace the shattered front rim ect, and i can go riding on sunday! I'm trying to figure out how we can get this done but these guys are to busy freaking because one guy scratched his $600 pipe and the other guys $500 steering damper looks tweaked blah...blah...blah. These guys whined straight to the promoter who just kind of held his hands up. Now i get these goof balls calling me because they want me to pay for a whole list of junk that they noticed wasnt in perfect order upon returning home. I felt like laughing in the one guys face because he spent like $3,000 on aftermarket products when he could have easily gained 10 horsepower just by getting a pair of balls and turning the throttle farther but thats another subject (ha ha). Now i know this type of event is not a race but does anyone really like eating dust? Is there some type of speed limit not listed but observed that i should be aware of? Are fast riders really not welcome on dual rides? Are there lanes like a divided highway even on off road trails? Do other dual sport riders follow the rule of driving on the right side of the trail only? Is it common practice to find riders going backwards on the routes such as in my case? My missing something?

Thanks for all the advice, Steve 55+

p.s. a cast gives you time to watch all those jump videos of 16 year olds missing triples so you can remind yourself not to try that.

p.s.p.s. what doesnt kill you....makes you stronger!

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Hey Duster,

Your incident reminds me of what happened to me. A long time ago, in a land far, far away... Me and my riding buddy were in this old abandoned dirt land fill having fun after school. (high school) He was on an xr80 and I was on my kx80 big wheel.

The riding area was perfect for anything from supercross style jumps and whoops to enduro mud bogs. The three wheelers set up such huge berms that once you commit in the entrance, you had to stay on the gas or your bike would fall 10' to the bottom. Anyway, while entering one of these 'berms', I didn't notice my buddy entering from the other side because of the foliage around the apex area. Well, both of us were going about 25-30mph when we realized that we couldn't change direction or even react to each other in the berm.

SMASH! Both of us went over the bars, passing to the left of each other. I woke up with a bruised thigh, and nearly broken left knee cap. He ended up with a broken ankle. Somehow, we managed to get the bikes upright and out of the berm, and push them out of the woods. We were dying! The ER doc and my mom kept calling them "murdercycles!" each time he drew fluid out of my knee cap area. Really nobody's fault, but then again, both of our faults because we took the chance that no one would be on the other side of the berm. Still buds to this day; he even kept the broken front fender to my bike as a souvenir.

Something similar almost happened the other day when I was going off road on my '01s. I was thinking about flying around a two track dirt road corner headed towards some trails, but I thought, what if someone is coming the corner? I slowed to about 15 mph, because again, I could not see through the apex. Guess what? Little college boy and groupie girlfriend were flying around the same corner in their JEEP! I had to swerve off into the apex brush to avoid a crash. He slowed down too, with a surprised look on his face. I love busting berms and carving corners, but now I've had two too many instances where I've almost been dead. In other words, if I can't see whats around the corner, I crawl around it. In your case duster, I would think that they would be at fault if the loop is designated as one way only, the organizer should have stuck up for himself and you on this one. Normally, if the trail is unmarked, passing as you would on a split road works well. Good luck.

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Sure can identify with that magazine thing..lol

Keep mine in a stack in the basement near the beer fridge for relaxing winter rereading....

On the trail issue i always leave a bit of caution in reserve on blind corners. I meet quite a few fourwheelers on trails and they take up a lot of room and turn slower.

there are plenty of other places to give it some where i can watch ahead for other trail users.

On organised rides it is the same thing one never can say for sure that no-one is around that blind corner could be somebody lost or whatever, or maybe some ahole messed with the arrows, i have had that happen when doing an enduro.

Just my 0.2

Ride safe all.

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Just a bunch of bone-heads going the wrong way.

The best part "gain 10 horsepower by getting a set of balls and twisting the throttle farther."

24-26 mph through the trees, faster in the open stuff.

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Isn't it always the guy who didn't get hurt that bitches the most. Let me see...They had a roll chart, and then they decided to go backwards on a laid out course. Tell them to shove it up their...

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I had a similar experience. Just re-entered the sport of Dirtbikes after 15+ years away. Now in my early 40's. During my first dual-sport event last spring, I was riding with 10 friends - my pride was on the line - I was the newbie. Thought I was getting it back and stalled trying to cross a big tree that was cross the trail. Several bikes passed before I was able to get off the tree. Started playing catch up - passing unknown riders right and left - imagining that I'm racing hare scrambles again at 17 years. Starting to think, wow, It's all coming back. Wheelied past 4 slow guys that were navigating a mud puddle. Back on the gas. Didn't see the barkless pine tree that was downed, parallel with the trail. Hit it hard and fast. Launched into the tight trees. Knocked a lot of bark off three different trees. Was out cold for 2 minutes, then didn't know where I was for 10. My neck is still stiff and sore to this day. Feel fortunate it's just sore!

Lessons for me:

I'm not 17 any more - (weigh more and bench press less.)(But I wouldn't want to go back either)

Remember that these 4 strokes go much faster than the 175 I used to ride.

I'm slowing down a little - I want this dirtbiking thing to be a long ride!

Don't need to play catch up - Where most bad wrecks happen.

For Ga. riders - don't try to follow Dennis Powell!

Good riding to all!

[ December 01, 2001: Message edited by: mikem ]

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dust maker, sorry to here about your injuries that could be any one of us.i race enduros & harescrambles on my 00e and i was thinking about making it street legal and doing some dualsport rides.so i meet with the pres. of the local dualsport club to talk about it.and from that conversation and reading some of their fliers i got the feeling that some of those guys are a little anal.on the fliers saying "NO SPEED RACERS" "DONT EVEN SHOW UP" ECT.and i will respect there wishes so i am not sure its for me.but for guys to be going the wrong way :) on a marked trail that is totally ignorant!!the promoter should have at least said something to them about riding backwards and not just thrown his hands up.(but some pepole just dont get it).and for them to be blaming it on you is crazy you should be the one calling them for your repairs.well hope you heal quick.ride safe all.

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The most dangerous situation is this imo..

You are riding with another bike and all of a sudden he is not back there...

So you back track and in your mind you are worried and cursing yourself for not paying attention and so you rush back and meantime he has picked himself up and is trying to make up for lost time and wanting to be on your tail so he picks up the pace.....

We lost two riders here this year in twilight conditions and nobody knows for sure if that was the case but they collided and were killed.

I know it has happened before and is especially common with snowmobile users.

Just my 0.2

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Dust Maker,

I here your pain. Tell those guys to pound salt.

I ride sweep for a Baja Tour group and it dosn't matter if its a duel sport ride or not. If your on dirt you have to ride like there is some butt head like them coming at you when you least expect it. Or in Baja some drunk local in your lane triing to miss a pot hole. A one way trail is one thing anywhere else you have to expect the worst.

When I ride point I have to ride faster than everyone else to take the bullet for the group. If it looks like a bad corner or wash out it most likely will be. Use Murphy's law and it will keep you alive.

Hope your feeling better.

Ride On, Moredesert

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Two points, those guys riding the wrong way are 100% absolutely wrong for doing that, it's completely idiotic. The only time I've ever rode backwards on a trail was for help for a downed rider and I usually rode off the trail on the edges.

Second point, if you are in that much of a hurry and need to ride that fast, you should be riding in a race, not an oraganized ,leisurely trail ride which is what a dual sport is.

Nick

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