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Rubicon Rouges [message #235061] Thu, 03 May 2007 23:42
Messages: 460
Registered: July 2005
Location: Stockton, California - US...
Senior Member
Rubicon Rouges
By Neil MacDannald
To our trails we come back, though it's not for a lack,
Of important things to do;
The adrenaline will pour, while your muscles get sore,
And your mind is born again new;

A days hard ride, with friends at your side,
Makes one feel happy, tired, and free;
When we get back, and I finally hit the sack,
I am always happy that I am me;

Rubicon Trail:

This day we had picked, knowing our bikes would get nicked,
The legendary Rubicon Trail to ride;
Some fail to return, as we would soon learn,
We started, friends side by side;

The air was quite cold, we rode hard we rode bold,
Over the rocks, boulders, and shale;
We rode down this path, and realized it's wrath,
This is a very difficult trail;

As it started to rain, not one would complain,
There was too much fun to be had;
We should have turned-round, rain started to pound,
I guess we're just crazy a tad;

From the sky came hail, as we rode that trail,
That horribly tough rocky trail;
But no one turned, though all were concerned,
That to get back we might fail;

Colder it got, but we're a tough lot,
I thought as it started to snow;
Colder still colder, with snow on my shoulder,
And the wind started to blow;

We stopped our troop, just to re-group,
We sheltered under a tree;
The storm raged, “an all nighter" I gauged,
As it hammered my friends and me;

“Just another mile”, I said with a smile,
And fired KTM my venerable steed;
One said “Wait!! It is getting real late,
And I've crashed and started to bleed”;

Then he cranked up his ride, and stood by its side...
You see of unwritten code he did think;
“I can make this ride”, he said with great pride,
Even though he was on the brink;

Half Way Point:

At shelter halfway, I was heard to say,
“Let's eat, and check our bikes”;
Our return would be slow, through wind driven snow,
I wished our tires had spikes;

I was chilled to the bone, but I was not alone,
And the daylight quickly passed;
It need not be said, we all knew and we dread,
This cold night could be our last;

One began to pout, as we started out,
But no one really could blame;
All knew it was far, back to the car,
And a hot meal by the fire's flame;

The going was rough, even our best had it tough,
And wind drove the cold like a spike;
One of us crashed, when offered food stashed,
He just cursed and restarted his bike;

Below the big hill, I sat with a chill,
It was miles back to our camp;
‘Go on past, and I'll ride up last’,
I said as I sat there all damp;

Everyone helped push, as we climbed through the slush,
And cheered when we crested the hill!;
But the mood turned grim, as we gazed round the rim,
We had many miles to ride still;

It is passionate for me, like a stormy sea,
Some things are in your blood;
Strong sprit you must have, and you feel glad,
You lived through this flood;

I knew this storm would kill, if we didn’t have strong will,
While others started to doubt;
Another said “There is too much snow, and we are going slow”,
I said “Get moving!” in a shout;

My skills it would test, it would take our best,
Failure I never did know;
Freezing cold means pain, even without rain,
Could not let doubts show;

We must press on regardless, in spite of the huge mess,
We just had to start moving and go;
There are still several hills, that would test all our wills,
Blinding cold is a fearsome foe;

One started to cry, and said "I am too tired to try!",
So I guess we all took rest on a hill;
We then made a bet, as we watched the sunset,
And the cold wind started to shrill;

As he sat in the snow, and he watched the wind blow,
He was dejected, hopeless and still;
“Very few mountains hold, this beautiful marigold”,
I could see he started to heal;

I said “We really must go, especially now with this snow,
I know it will be tough to get back;
Please think of our group, getting separated is bad for our troop,
But before going let’s first have this snack”;

You must have the nack, else never come back,
We saw cool jeeps with people,
Remembering jeeps, of which fond memory keeps;
I admired them climbing the “Steeple”;

Unlike our start, now heavy heart,
Snow made us often stop;
I heard someone sob, as trail boss’s job,
I had to be sure we got to the top;

Now low on fuel, this was truly a duel,
At least I could count on my friends;
Danger! I thought, and the more this storm brought,
The more each of us helping success depends;

I fell on some moss, my being trail boss,
Meant I must get up and re-start;
The cold wind and snow, made it difficult to go,
Our group being torn apart;

Angry cloud covered moon, I hoped to finish soon,
Our destiny now played a part;
My hostility fed, rain appeared red,
Everyone wet from the start;

Running motors hard, we fought for each yard,
Lighting hitting within sight;
Soaked with rain, hiding my pain,
With our own demons we must fight;

We might not make it at all, it would only take one more fall,
Again lighting striking near;
It was fun that we sought, but we were being taught,
While our group was struck with fear;

The going was slow, but strength we began to show,
I could see it in our group;
Still with more hills, we must have no more spills,
I prayed for the safety of our troop;
We finally made camp, and pushed up the loading ramp,
Our bikes in the back of the truck;
Wow what a feat, while beginning to eat,
On our side we had plenty of luck;

Of riders with less will, we hear stories still,
They begin but do not return;
We just ate our hot meal, and spoke of that hill,
And watched the warm fires burn;
As we drove down, and headed toward town,
I reflected on our trip;
Safely coming home I felt lucky, riding gear all mucky,
I would like to offer a tip;

Be yourself and have fun, in the rain or the sun,
Enjoy beauty and just smile;
Support your friends, be true to all ends,
And your life will be full and worthwhile;

True story.

There were 6 of us.

Having raced the Baja 1000 a few times I was the fastest rider by far and I had the most experience. I had agreed to take the others on this trip and I was not going to let anything get in our way. I brought tools, chain lube, extra tubes, extra food, and a .45 Glock automatic pistol that I kept inside my riding shirt in a police holster so the others did not know. I brought it because I have seen bears rough up people out here before. I also brought a TAZAR gun which I borrowed from my favorite nephew. I agreed to be trail boss because I was the only one that had been on this trail before. I had a very fast KTM 525 with an extra large fuel tank and a bright headlight and tail light. I should have brought rain gear. I know how the weather can change quickly in the sierras.

Bill had to have everything in perfect shape. He was 22, tall, and muscular. His truck was clean and cool. His yellow Yamaha was well maintained and not noisy at all. His bike had a dim enduro headlight and no taillight. He was probably the most intelligent of all of us as he was a high-school teacher.

Randy was fast for a 20 year old, especially for a short heavy person. He crashed his dirty bike a lot. He had worn out boots and riding gear. He rode a green Kawasaki that was way too loud and used too much fuel. At least he was quick to get ready and we never had to wait for him.

John I knew the least. He seemed to be about 25 years old. I was surprised at how well his red Honda ran. It was a 4-stroke that he was too tall for. He drove a nice white Chevy pickup.

Tom drove a black Chevy pickup with a V8 engine and nice sounding dual pipes. He rode a yellow Suzuki. He was the slowest one in our group. It took a long time for him to get going again each time we stopped. It annoyed me to wait for him.

Sam was older and had more experience than the rest of them. His truck and bike were clean and fast. He was always the first one of them to be ready. He was one of our strongest and clear thinking riders. He carried tacos in his riding jacket that he ate every time we stopped.

[Updated on: Thu, 03 May 2007 23:49]

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