1st timer as well. Technically I rode it solo although I never felt solo since I left early and followed the tortoise zone speed limit. Had a flat on the front about 40 miles in on day 1. Fixed that and made it to Barstow with just a small dismount sliding into a deep sand berm to keep things interesting. About 40 miles into day 2 I had a big blowout on my front tire - ended up being an ugly 3/4" gash. Looked like I hit a broken bottle or something. Luckily it was right as we dropped out of the canyon back to the 40 so I managed to shove a bunch of plugs into the gash which let me hold enough air to ride a couple minutes between inflation stops all the way back to Barstow via Route 66. Took forever but I got to Barstow and grabbed a new tire at the Suzuki dealership there. Had it mounted and ready to go about the time that my support crew arrived from OC. Loaded the bike into the truck to try and catch up with the group in Sandy Valley but missed sweep by about 40 minutes. Didn't want to risk being out after dark on an unmarked trail by myself so I just drove the truck into Vegas. Next year the little one will be old enough for me to have my support crew in the area so I'll be prepared with a spare bike or something haha.