I got my butt kicked...!

Joined
Aug 5, 2001
Messages
309
Likes
0
#1
Hey,
I finally broke down this Saturday, and took off to find the Bethel ATV trail in DeSoto NF in southern Mississippi.
I saw several people on Hwy. 15 N. unloading and getting ready to ride on the side of the road, but this was before the forest. I later wished I would have stopped and joined up with them. Instead I pushed on and found the Bethel ATV trail. There was one 4-wheeler guy there, and he was on his way out. He answered some questions for me, and I was off, exploring the trails by myself (bad mistake). I discovered that these trails are full of millions of roots, fortunately I'm used to them from riding here in NW Florida. My second mistake was not asking how long each loop was. Not knowing the length of the trail, I could not pace myself and exhaustion started to set in. I started wigging myself out by thinking the trail would never end, or thinking my rear tire was flat, or that I would run out of gas and be stranded, with nobody to look for me. Finally, the loop ended, clocked at about 20 miles, I was SO relieved to see my truck.

After a short rest, I was considering going home, but I drove 2 hours to get there, and decided to take the second loop. Mistake number 3, again I didn't know how long the loop was, so it was a repeat of the first loop. It was worse though, the trail was slightly tougher, not marked as well, and I was still tired from the first loop. As mental and physical exhaustion set in again, only 2x worse, I started getting sloppy. A 2nd gear, slow speed layover of the bike was my first hint that I was whooped. However, I pressed on, not wanting to let the trail or the bike kick my butt. Then later, a higher speed layover in 3rd gear, around a gentle, but rooty, right hand turn put the finishing touches on me. I dented my new pipe (grrrrr..) and bruised up my right arm and shoulder on the roots I landed on. Flooded, I tried to start the bike, with no luck, I was so beat I could not even get a good full kick. After resting a minute, I got her started and finished the last couple miles of the trail, thankfully it was another 20 mile trail. Any longer and I might not have made it out.

Exhausted, bruised and beaten I loaded up and limped home. Looking back, the trails weren't so bad, I think I psychologically wore myself out, more than physically. Not knowing whether I had 10 miles left or 40 really scared me. Going by myself bothered me too, I had figured there would have been others there when I arrived. I'm glad I went and challenged myself, it was an adventure, and a lesson I will never forget. Furthermore, I was very proud of my '96 XR400. Despite being out of date, slow, heavy and a piece of sh*t ( according to all you YZF/WRF/KTM freaks ), she handled the roots and sharp turns and cutbacks like a dream. Even after dumping and flooding her twice, she still kept on purring, like I would expect any XR to do. I was going to give out before she was, that was very evident. Now, I'm ready to go back and do it again, and check out a couple of other trail systems in the DeSoto NF. Keep on thumpin'!
 

BSWIFT

Sponsoring Member<BR>Club Moderator
N. Texas SP
Joined
Nov 25, 1999
Messages
7,910
Likes
27
#2
Sounds like a good ride anyway. Try to find a bud to go with you. Two on the trails is always best.
 

justql

Sponsoring Member<BR>Club Moderator
Joined
Oct 23, 2000
Messages
2,874
Likes
0
#3
Even though I just read his signature, I do agree with Bswift. Riding with buddies makes it way more fun and safe.
 

BSWIFT

Sponsoring Member<BR>Club Moderator
N. Texas SP
Joined
Nov 25, 1999
Messages
7,910
Likes
27
#4
Even though I just read his signature

Did I miss something?:think
 

fatherandson

Mi. Trail Riders
Joined
Feb 3, 2001
Messages
3,818
Likes
0
#6
Hey snaggle, I know the feeling of riding by yourself and being tired. Two years ago I could not find anyone to go riding with and went a few times by myself. I always had a map, but not the best quality.
The best thing I did this Spring was to sign up on this forum. Before you go riding again, put a post on the Place to Ride forum. I have found 15-20 new riding buddies in a few months.
Avoid riding by yourself! Especially two hours from home!!!!!
 
Joined
Mar 18, 2001
Messages
39
Likes
0
#7
Riding buddy?

I see your from NW FL. Next time you are going riding, send me a email and I'll try to go with you. If I can't, I know several other people that might go...
 

Smokin Joe

Sponsoring Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2000
Messages
72
Likes
0
#8
Hey Snaggle, what they said...

I live about 90 miles north of those trails and would love to hook up with you next time you go. Since with have some really cool trails here in Meridian, I haven't made it down to DeSoto yet but it's on my list. Just leave a post here in Enduros or places to ride forum and you will certainly get some responses.

happy Trails,

Joe
 
Joined
Aug 5, 2001
Messages
309
Likes
0
#11
Hey,
Thanks for the responses and support. My usual riding buddy has kinda gotten out of riding recently. Just my luck, I've been wanting to ride as much as possible, and explore new areas. So, I've been out of luck. It would be so awesome to meet up with a group or just one person, and show me some new and challenging trails.

The ATV trails in DeSoto are the closest to my area, but northern Alabama trails are only about a 4hr. drive. I know there are tons of other smaller, less known trails around. Unfortunately, finding these areas are difficult without contacts.

This Labor Day weekend, I'll be out of town and won't be able to ride. However, next weekend and every other possible weekend after I'll be up for riding. I'll try to hook up with some of you ASAP, and hopefully go on some awesome rides. Have a good weekend. Keep on thumpin'!