Death Valley Noobs Rally 2016 – Wednesday

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Once again it’s time for the ADVRider Death Valley Noobs Rally, one of the highlights of my year (and one of the only reliable times I can get dirt under my motorcycle tires).

As usual I started out about 12 hours behind schedule.  I loaded up the Jeep in the late hours Tuesday night then woke up Wednesday morning and pulled the bike onto the trailer, secured it, then hit the road.

About a mile and a half from home it occurred to me that I failed to lock my back door.  To be safe I turned around to go home and take care of it.  I turned into a parking lot, onto a side street, then made a left turn back onto the major street I was traveling on seemingly without incident.  When I got home I jumped out of the Jeep and noticed that the trailer did not have a motorcycle on it.  Might be a problem there.

I got back in the Jeep, executed a dodgy U-Turn, and retraced my steps on my route.  I found the bike in the middle of that major street where I made that low speed left turn.  I parked in the nearby parking lot and walked up to the bike just as the Torrance Police arrived.  Do you know how embarrassing it is to walk up to an unattended motorcycle and say “that’s mine?”  I do.

Luckily the cop didn’t cite me for littering and even held traffic while I picked the bike up and pushed it to the parking lot to inspect damage.

I got off lucky.  Nobody ran it over and all I had were scratched body panels, a destroyed headlamp frame, two broken mirrors, and scratched spot lamps.  All items except the low beam worked and the bike seemed to run true and straight.  I loaded it back up then ran back home and added three more straps, if this thing fell it was not leaving the damn trailer!  I’m sure I initially didn’t preload the suspension quite far enough, the first (and hopefully last) time I made that mistake.

I stopped by Del Amo Motorsports on the way out of town to grab a side mirror then got on the wonderful 405 freeway where I hit speeds of up to 23 miles per hour.  Some four and a half hours and approximately 16 gallons of gas later I arrived at PSR.

After some time arranging gear and talking to folks Joel and company headed off to the springs while No Longer Has a KLR Rob and I went to Hunter Mountain to set the repeater up.  We made quick work of the hike up the mountain and had clean comms to PSR.

Rob posing.

We even got some white stuff.

From there we jumped in the Jeep and ran back to camp where we had dinner, told lies, and in general had a good time.



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