Words of Wisdom
"I Like It." (More pictures to come!!!)
Everyone is different. For proof, just look at us. The following are my ramblings on some of our differences.
I like high speed riding. Fire roads are the bees knees to me. I love cranking a big feet-up broad slide around a left-hand sweeper at around 50 mph. (The fact that most of my scars are on my left side is merely coincidental. Or maybe not.) Top speeding whatever bike I'm on is typically a must. Baja is way cool for speed.
Brad also likes speed, but he likes to attain his highest speeds when there are a bunch of shotput-sized rocks on the road. There is a road in the Panamints that I lovingly dubbed "Ball Bearing Road." It is strewn with a multitude of round rocks. The first time we traveled this road, Brad went rifling down it like a bat out of hell. I attempted to follow. I thought I was doing a pretty good job, too. I was still in Brad's dust and looked down to see my speedo registering 55 mph. I looked up in time to see the road cut a hard left. Going straight was not an option. After a cool broadslide, I naturally crashed on my left side.
Jay likes speed only in sand washes. He claims that he gets too squirrely on fire roads. I don't understand that. A bike is usually at its squirreliest at speed in a sand wash. Go figure.
I'm not sure Paul likes high speeds. He has not said he doesn't, and he typically can ride pretty fast, but I think it is mostly out of fear of being left behind. Don't worry Paul, we are not trying to ditch you. On most high-speed turns, Paul can usually be seen going in with decent form, only to freak and straight-line off into the weeds.
I like exploring. There is nothing better than going down a trail that you have never seen before. We come back with some of our best stories after we've gone on rides where no one knew in advance where we were going. Since I am typically following Brad, getting hopelessly lost on a ride is no problem. Exploring abandoned mines and ghost towns/shacks is also a must. I think we are all in agreement on our like for exploring. It's just that now that Paul, Jay, and Brad all have families to care for, they are under strict orders to not go out and die someplace where nobody can find them.
I dislike beating the crap out of myself to get up a gnarly hill climb. If I can't make the top after two tries, it's time to find another way around.
Brad loves gnarly hill climbs. The steeper, longer, and gnarlier, the better. The boulder-strewn trail up the face of Alamo Mountain in Los Padres National Forest is one of his favorites. He also loves the Big and Little Sluice Boxes on the Rubicon Trail. Brad just basically seems to like to beat the crap out of himself. I often offer to help, but Brad says he can do just fine by himself.
Jay is the king of the slow hill climb. I have never seen anyone that can motor up a hill climb at the slow speed that Jay can. I nearly crashed into him because he was in the middle of a steep climb just putting along. I went into the bushes, and he just kept going up, putt putt, and up, putt putt, and up. Jay likes smooth hill climbs.
Paul is the Energizer Bunny of hill climbs. He will not let several aborted attempts keep him from the top. He just goes back to the bottom and tries and tries again. Eventually his bike gets to the top, with or without Paul. I think he likes hill climbs, but it is sometimes hard to tell.
I like going down little goat trails that traverse cliffs and ridge tops. I get a rush looking off to side thinking what a bummer it would be to fall off.
I think Brad is with me here.
Jay looks off the side of traverses and freaks. He will do them if there is no other way, but he will invariably crash once he gets across to "safe" ground.
I think Paul is with Jay on this one.
I like going down the middle of creeks. It can sometimes get gnarly when you hit moss-covered rocks, but typically it's fun. Just watch out for water with a smooth surface. It can be deep, right Paul?
Jay loves trying to leave the biggest wake he can when going through water. I am amazed he has not drowned his bike on more than one occasion.
Paul has drowned his bike on at least one occasion.
Brad likes traveling through creeks with big gnarly moss-covered rocks. If he's not slipping and sliding around, it's not "technical" enough for him.
I do not really like snow. It is cold, slippery, and I always crash.
I am not sure if Brad likes snow, but he always manages to find it. You can be riding in the middle of the desert behind Brad, and poof, you will be in snow and cold. He has led people into snow in the Panamint Mountains, the Sierras, the San Gabriel Mountains, and I am told, the Rockies. I think it is partially related to his like for long, tall hill climbs.
I do not know how Paul and Jay feel about snow. I think they feel it's cold.
Everyone dislikes crashing, but we all do it. If you are a regular reader of this column, you know I am the acknowledged best at it. We all wear armor. I have the most scars. Nuff said.
We all have different likes and dislikes. The main thing that we can all agree on, however, is that we like riding dirt bikes.