from the fire the night before I find a bizarre photo on my new camera that I guess it decided to take itself when inadvertently I’d turned it on, set it on timed release, hit the shutter and moved it all at the same time…I have a learning curve with this new Pentax bear with me!!!
but I guess we were getting transported to more fun riding, around the fire over a little too much alcohol we came up with a slogan for W38M (that probably won’t be used) – We’ll come up with shit…and it’ll be awesome!!!
The next morning was a slow start, not surprisingly. Up and walking around it appeared we were at an impromptu Mosko Moto convention, between us we had almost every piece of luggage they make
the next few days we a mix of dirt and pavement and a ride around the Mogollon Rim where one of the NY’rs with us had very little travel experience in true NY style described the view as – “a total eye fuck!”
We arrived at OX and the motorcycle section was totally detached from the rest of the event and at times it appeared like a ghost town, but at the end of the weekend I was talking to one of the organizers and she said they have plans to integrate the bikes with everyone else which is a good thing as a separate unit I doubt many vendors would return.
For me, it was a few shots in strong HDR to keep my interest peaked, of some of the vendors to let you know how it looks
and how about this for a very rare (food) truck in these parts…anyone?
For us, OX was a chance to meet up with friends and talk about rides to come which I’ll cover in the next post as it’s the real reason we actually came, for us, it’s a starting point of sorts that I’ll detail….
for us Overland Expo is a start point, a few weeks back I changed the title to add …”on as much dirt as possible”. The reason for this is – back in December 2016 we applied to create a new Guinness World Record
As Dusty had changed the name of his company and was in the process of starting a new company we decided to use OX as our new start point, I have messaged Guinness more than a few times to let them know what we are doing but they are the least responsive corporation out there. They claim that they will respond in 12 weeks or less, well its now been 161 days or 23 weeks and absolutely zero communication from them from multiple emails from me.
…but regardless we continue…
So why do this? Well over time I have had more than a few requests for a photography book, I thought why not put a few things together. A good North American loop of dirt tracks in the US and Canada that most anyone could access from approximately 500 miles from their front door. Full GPX tracks of the route, a book and maybe a Kickstarter to help the project. I have spent over two years collecting tracks and trying to make them join up into a fun ride.
But I am getting way ahead of myself here, in reality, it’s just a ride to go and find dirt, cool views and take some photos and maybe meet a few inmates along the way, I am just putting this here as additional documented proof to Guinness about my communication attempts, and their lack of response.
The last thing I would like to happen is to have to use the same line Austin Vince did at the end of Mondo Enduro!!!
The first 5 days of the ride almost singlehandedly looked like the complete opposite of what we had planned and detailed to do above. We left OX to head to 4 corners area to start hitting dirt but instead, we hit high winds, snow, blizzards and torrential rain instead, Days that we expected to have highs in the 80’s and 90’s were in the 40’s and 50’s with nightly lows all below freezing. A stop in a BLM office in Utah and a long talk with a ranger told me that virtually all the areas we had planned to go were either snowing, snow drifts in place, flash floods or mud and washouts.
Where we planned to be riding 90%+ of dirt we only made 11.2% or 79.8 miles of 708 miles covered…damn!!!
But when life gives you lemons…this has to be one of the most scenic areas of the country so it was great to show Egle some amazing sights via pavement.
Canyon de Chelly –
She stood there amazed and when she did turn around proclaimed “this is where freedom lives”
at the bottom of the canyon are some of the original dwellings
Then onto Monument Valley
and we finished the day in the Valley of the Gods after a short stop at Goosenecks as the sun was setting
The next morning even thought we had a brief blue sky temps were around freezing, but a little dirt to play on
fine snow was falling as we climbed Moki Dugway and there is a bike in that photo…
From the top of the Moki Dugway, we headed to Halls Crossing to take the ferry to Bullfrog to ride the Burr Trail (a little dirt) the elevation was lower so the snow turned to torrential rain and the captain of the ferry was debating about cancelling the ferry due to the severe condition, luckily for us he didn’t.
We ended up after drying off in a gas station for 3 hours then finding a place to wild camp on the Burr Trail in the saturated sticky red mud, the following morning in the day light we got to see where we picked
The blue sky only lasted a short time then the temps dropped again and we had snow at 5000′ as we left the switchbacks
our first 4 days looked like this, we saw awesome scenery but we need to find more dirt!!!