In the immortal words of my coworker: "Why is there so much dirt on your bike?"
The short answer:
Andy, Don, and Doug from the Chain Gang met up with Peter and I at Emil Villa's in Livermore on Sunday for some great dualsport riding.
First, we had much yummy goodness.
(Yes, I ate more than bacon -- though who would want to? -- my waffle just arrived a few minutes late.)
Andy, Doug, and I had our F650GSs; Peter rode his NEW DR-Z400S (!! more on that in a bit); Don brought his Yamaha TW200.
We took Mines Road from breakfast down to Frank Raines Off-Road Park.
The original plan was to get a trail map and play around on the easy jeep roads but, unfortunately, that plan was right out the window when the ranger said they were out of trail maps. No problem, we said, "what could possibly go wrong?"
Well, what went wrong was that we pretty much instantaneously got lost.
I believe that I was the first to bite the dust as I was leading...I tried to stop on what I THOUGHT was a flat section, but it wound up being sloped and my foot couldn't touch ground. Rather than pulling a muscle trying to save it, I just let the bike tip over. Plop. That'd be the photo up above there.
Doug came up behind me, looked at me and my sleepy bike, and decided to join in the fun.
Peter hides behind a bush and pretends he doesn't know us:
So, hey, how about that DR-Z400S, huh? I found it on Craigslist last week and we bought it on Saturday night.
Here's another pic of it:
Peter seems really happy with it (which, of course, makes me thrilled -- more riding with my sweetie!). He was certainly kicking all of our asses at the park.
Which brings us to the fateful hill. Or, as I like to call it, The Hill.
After dissecting the following events with the benefit of hindsight, it seems that the problem was that Peter thought that he was riding up The Hill on the DRZ to scout for the rest of us; unfortunately, Doug and Don thought that he was leading, so they followed him up.
Doug will be the first to admit that he has no idea how he made it up The Hill. Beginner's luck?
Don wasn't so lucky -- when Doug slowed down at the top, Don had to brake while he was still behind Doug, and Don's TW200 went ker-plopsky.
Andy and I were still at the bottom at this point, parked, saying things to one another like, "oh, HEYYYY-L no".
For some reason that is probably unknown even to Andy, he decided that he was going to try to make it up after all. To be fair, he did make it up about 3/4 of the way before losing traction and sliding back down the hill. On his side.
So now Peter and Doug are at the top, Don and Andy are resting partway up, and I'm parked down at the bottom.
Don's bike is easily righted since it's close to the top and very lightweight. Andy's bike was a little trickier. I helped by staying out of the way and, y'know, taking pictures of people doing actually useful things.
The guys get Andy's bike back up on the rubber bits, but there's a problem. It won't shift out of neutral -- rather, the lever itself will shift but the clutch won't engage, or disengage, or something. No power was getting from the clutch to the final drive. "Oh poo," we said.
So that decided what we'd already mostly figured out -- we would have to get everyone back down The Hill since the park entrance was downhill and mechanical issues meant the day was pretty much over.