My last motocross outing had ended with a crash and an ambulance ride
WORDS: Angie Loy
Last November, Jan Plessner, Public Relations Manager at Kawasaki, emailed me with an exciting offer. She had just returned from a dual-sport trek and was itching to go again, this time with friends. Normally I would accept any invitation to go on a motorcycle ride, but just this once I kindly refused. My last motocross outing had ended with a crash and an ambulance ride (http://blogs.motorcyclistonline.com/1002524/events/moto-x-mishap/index.html), and I wasn’t ready to eat more dirt.
Disappointed with my answer, Plessner responded with a simple solution: Dirtbike School. She coordinated a private day of lessons for me in the dirt lot adjacent to Kawasaki’s headquarters in Irvine, California, with MSF instructors Bonnie Warch and Andrea Beach from coach2ride.com. (Look for my review in a future issue of Motorcyclist magazine). Upon completing the school, my confidence was back, my fear of dirt riding was gone and I was ready to go dual-sporting.
So we did.
The riders–Andrea, Bonnie, Jan and Jeff Herzog, Senior Media Relations Coordinator at Kawasaki–met on November 29th in Ramona (which for you MotoGP fans happens to be John Hopkins’ hometown). Our adventure began through the back country of San Diego County, Beach and Warch’s usual playground. Kawasaki supplied us all with KLX250s, a perfect motorcycle for this ride which encompassed both dirt and pavement.
We began on the dirt fire roads through the Pamo Valley and then hit the pavement through some twisties to the Sutherland Dam and Santa Isabel, and the famous Julian Pie Company, where I had a slice of the best pie I’ve ever eaten. It was a 4-hour loop through the lush countryside and quaint surrounding towns, and as many of you know, a barren landscape is hard to come by in SoCal, so it was a real treat. As we were heading pack to Ramona, Andrea pulled off the road and pointed to a ranch on the hill. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing: a camel farm! Why would someone raise camels in San Diego County? I could only guess to satisfy the needs of some eccentric millionaires’ diets of raw camel milk and cous cous. It was a perfect Twilight Zone moment. Amused, we all headed back and said our goodbyes.
So, thanks to Jan, Jeff and the gals from coach2ride.com, my confidence in dirt riding was elevated and it was fun again. I’m not sure I’m ready to go back to the motocross track and hit the doubles, but for sure I’ll go dirt biking again.