Well, after months of planning and preparations, this years ride has come to a close, mostly. More on that later.
Friday evenings meet n greet BBQ went well with bikes arriving throughout the afternoon and evening. Old friendships rekindled and new ones started. Every one settled in and made last minute adjustments or downloaded unneccesary gear.
Saturday morning started out well enough with everyone gearing up and going for coffee and breakfast, prior to beginning the ride. As the last few of us were firing up our bikes and strapping on helmets, one bike refused to start. Even though it had been ridden over 700 miles and three days to get here, it refused to fire. We got it jumped with a Peterbilt, of all things. Off we went to join the rest of the group. At the start point, the bike again refused to fire. We got it bump started and he took off to a local auto parts store to replace the battery and sure enough it was done.
After a quick jaunt through downtown Prescott, we picked up CraigES on the way up to the Copper Basin Overlook and took in the views west towards the mountains we would call home for the next two days.
Down to Skull Valley and up the Tonto Rd to Camp Wood. Right off the bat we come across a herd of about 15-20 javalina out in the meadow next to the road. After dodging a couple of dozen Jeeps we made our way down into Bagdad for some lunch and fuel. The Diner on Main welcomed us and showed us to our tables where we consumed massive burgers and copius amounts of fries. During a quick flat repair in a nice shady parking lot, most of us took the time to fuel up and watch the gigantic haul trucks working the mine behind us.
We backtracked north about 15 miles to our turn off to Bozarth Mesa and the canyonlands beyond. After a few gates and a couple of herds of mule deer we came out on the high plateau. Thats where disaster struck. The first part of the group had reached the last gate but we were short a few bikes, as I started to count bikes, Scrapper came tearing in and said that Cliff had gone down and had a possible broken leg. We all immediately went back to help.
Campfire began triaging the injury. We had just enough cell service to place an emergency call. There was alot of confusion on getting help to us, even with precise GPS coordinates. Unbeknownst to most of the group, I had my pickup staged down in the canyon at the campsite. Corey, Sal and I left Cliff in the capable hands of Campfire and the rest of the group to go get the truck in case we had to evac him and to recover the bike. We arrived back with the truck and loaded the bike. The rest of the group went down to the canyon to set up camp before dark. Help finally arrived just as the sun was setting. They loaded Cliff into the bird and Cliffs ride was over.
The only damage to the bike was a bent front rim but the damage to Cliff was much worse. Although not life threatening, his leg was indeed broken. I will let him fill you all in on that as he sees fit.