Finally, we had nice enough weather to spend some time learning on our ADV bikes after a long, cold winter. Because we both acquired our bikes during the off-season, this weekend was our first real opportunity to take these beauties into unexplored territory and get them dirty!
First, we scouted out some trails via foot (and paws) to be sure we could access the trails and they weren’t complete sand dunes, which is typical living on an island. Then Saturday, since it was a balmy 70 degrees, we geared up in all our Revit goodies, and hit the trails. Almost instantly, there was more sand than I was comfortable with – but I was cautious, steady, and using a few tips from Bret Tkacs, I was able to get through it. Click below for more details AND a VIDEO.
We continued over beds of pine needles (which can be slick), broken paved roads, and mostly sandy utility roads. There were also slight elevation changes which was surprising given the overall flat terrain of most of Long Island. Again, we took everything at a slow steady pace since we are both beginners with this type of riding.
But of course, at one point I was going a bit too quick, and I intended to slow down but mistakenly picked up speed right into the dreaded deep sand and down I went! The Tiger ended up on top of my ankle. Thankfully, the amazing boots protected my ankle from getting crushed and my boyfriend was able to lift the bike off my leg. My ankle was slightly twisted but luckily nothing severe.
After catching my breath, I jumped back on the bike. I wasn’t too freaked out since I suspected I might crash knowing my lack of experience in sandy terrain. We continued our exploration. I was noticing how quickly I was tiring since I’m not used to this type of riding. Your entire body is so much more engaged than riding on the street. I should have removed some of the layers of my Revit gear (4-season jacket and I still had the waterproof layer AND thermal layer inside), since I was becoming drenched in sweat. But I didn’t want to stop.
As we were approaching the exit gate, we passed a pedestrian. I said to Clay over the comms “I’m going to drop it since this guy (with an enormous camera) is watching” Sure enough, between my self-fulfilling prophecy and pure exhaustion, I hit another patch of sand, and I went down on the other side. I can’t say enough about the protection of my Forma ADV boots. Again, even with a 500lbs motorcycle on my ankle, I walked away unscathed. And a shout out to Revit as well. My jacket and pants offered superior protection and kept out even the finest sand.
I was elated by such an amazing ride, learning new techniques, and seeing an unexplored part of Long Island. Unfortunately, my bike wasn’t as excited. After only a few miles of highway riding, the bike died. Jumping it with our portable jump box didn’t work. The bike was just done, sorta like me. I rode on the back of Clay’s bike to a nearby café. We enjoyed some refreshing iced tea, then he went home to get the Jeep and trailer. He picked me up at the café on the way back so I could help him load the bike. And sadly, that was the first of a few dead bikes this weekend, but that’s a story for another day….
Despite the dead Tiger, which is probably just a lack of coolant since quite a bit dumped out during my crashes, it was an amazing day! I gained more confidence on the Tiger, learned how to handle different types of terrain, and perhaps I am “less” scared of crashing since that was my first time laying down a bike. Clay was such an encouraging and supportive riding partner, and his quick moves, and handy work, made for a stellar day despite some bumps in the road, or should I say sand