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Old 02-11-2012, 09:25 AM   #151
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Originally Posted by drc42 View Post
Hmmm..... need to find something good to bribe you with I know you are not a drinker but certainly there is a weakness there someplace I could exploit As far as getting a better computer. If you set up a web page with some pics and talking about what you are doing I suspect a "donate" button would get some hits.
Yesterday another of the regulars in this forum offered to donate $ to this cause. I turned him down, and said I'd be happier if he just came out and enjoyed the ride when it's ready. And just because I don't know someone doesn't mean they can't ride the Grand Rally. They just might not be able to ride it with me. Now who wants to ride with a guy who rode with a training wheel for 30 years, doesn't drink, is sort of anal, knows secret shortcuts so as to always be in the lead, and only eats pizza? Man, it’s more of a challenge fighting you guys off than developing the ride!

p.s. I’ve known that WildTurkey guy for 50 years, so he and his pizza are in!
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Old 02-11-2012, 10:48 AM   #152
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In addition to the standard roadbook holder and odometer, I've got a few extras on the bike to help with the prerunning and roadbook making. Here's a little rundown of those tech tools.



While prerunning, I have a standard Garmin 76CSx GPS with tracks showing our planned path (in green), plus hundreds of alternate tracks (usually red) that I draw while scouting the area on Google Earth. The roadbook defines the planned path, and the green GPS track helps us stay on it. When the roadbook has a mistake or is missing a key intersection, the GPS shows us the right way to go. When we run into some type of roadblock, the alternate tracks show various ways we might get around that roadblock. After the preruns are completed, the GPS tracks will not be available. Those riding this adventure have to navigate it by following the roadbooks.

The GPS screen is too small for dealing with the roadblocks and workarounds, so I create and print paper maps across 10 to 20 sheets showing my GPS tracks, all the roadbook waypoints, plus lots of other helpful info such as nearby gas stations and emergency bailout roads. Since I have to refer to the paper map a lot in the preruns (because nothing ever goes as planned), I made a sort of “Office Depot” clipboard dash below the roadbook so I can keep the paper map right where I can see it. This saves tons of time on the preruns. Occasionally I write notes on the map while prerunning.

Since there are dozens of mistakes in the roadbook and helpful added information that we discover while prerunning, writing notes was taking too much time and slowing us down too much. So, next to my SPOT tracker I’ve got a voice recorder on a RAM mount. Now I make most of my notes on that recorder. When I find a roadbook mistake, I place a waypoint on my GPS at that point and record a voice message identifying the waypoint number and what needs fixing at that point.

I’ve also got a high-resolution GPS recorder beside the voice recorder. That gives me a lot more detail of my exact path than would fit into my Garmin 76CSx. Sometimes I can see where I fell down or made some other very slight maneuver that could be important for the roadbook. When I see that track overlaid on Google Earth, I have a pretty good memory of the terrain and what happened there, so I can add a lot of stuff to the roadbook before I even listen to the voice notes.

Some of us have VHF radios with helmet speakers and mic so we can communicate while riding. At least one of us has a Sat phone, and several of us have SPOT trackers. I carry 4 to 6 gallons of gas depending on the distance we expect to ride. I generally have a lot more gas than what should be needed because lots of things go wrong when we’re riding all these crazy places we’ve never been to before.
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Old 02-11-2012, 11:06 AM   #153
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What are you recording your mileage with? GPS? ICO?

Do you go back and ride a section after it is finished to check that the mileage and GPS and roadbook all agree?
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Old 02-11-2012, 11:51 AM   #154
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What are you recording your mileage with? GPS? ICO? Do you go back and ride a section after it is finished to check that the mileage and GPS and roadbook all agree?
The mileage is all determined from Google Earth way before we ride anything. The whole roadbook is created (except the tulip drawings) at home before we ride. The prerun is to verify the route is passable, and that the roadbook has the correct info (including mileage, compas headings, text, etc). After the prerun is completed, I make the needed corrections in the roadbook and draw the tulip diagrams. Then I consider it ready for others to use.

When prerunning, I use an ICO to verify the roadbook mileage is correct. About 98% of the time it is exact, or within a hundred meters or so. When it's wrong it's often a typo mistake on my part, like 1.20 miles instead of 2.10 miles. I also created a software tool (Excel macro) that does a rough mileage check before I print the prerun roadbooks. That catches most of the major mileage mistakes.

I almost never ride anything twice before the final roadbook is released. A couple of routes I've only ridden once in my life, and that was on the one prerun (Primmo, parts of Dumont-to-Vegas). I tended to get tied up with other tasks when we had the rally schools, so sometimes I miss the real ride. Actually, there are parts of my Afton Loop route that I have never ridden, even in a prerun. That one I ran out of time and couldn't prerun a long section, so I decided the roadbook as created at home on my computer "had to be right". Many others have ridden that one and I guess the roadbook was ok is because they always make it back to the bivouac! There's a hillclimb in there that I'd really like to see in real life, but never had a chance.
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Old 02-11-2012, 03:29 PM   #155
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p.s. I’ve known that WildTurkey guy for 50 years, so he and his pizza are in!
You just need to keep him from flying
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Old 02-11-2012, 06:50 PM   #156
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You just need to keep him from flying
These are not the WildTurkey's you're looking for (wave of the hand)

I doubt there will be any flying sections in this event. HogWild will ensure your bike wants to lay down and rest now and then...no flight plans will be scheduled.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:52 AM   #157
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Good stuff Hogwild.

When I was planning a Rally up here in Canada a few years back, I came to the same tool-set-up conclusions as you. Full route on computer, Paper map print outs, gps with many alternate routes, and voice recorder for correcting tulips.

Funny how the "best way" just evolves organically from necessity..

Whatever way you make this available, I'm fairly certain that lots of folks will dream of riding it, and a relative few will make it all happen.

Here's to being patient and waiting for it to fall into place.


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Old 02-13-2012, 05:30 AM   #158
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Just wanted to say, while I'm incredibly unlikely to ever see any of these routes in real life, I'm loving the insight into your planning process, and the photos. Thanks for posting.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:08 AM   #159
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HP through the dunes somewhere in Az.

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Old 02-13-2012, 09:14 PM   #160
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HP through the dunes somewhere in Az.
Nice vid Russ!

Here's the GE view of that section, starting at the rock at the bottom of the image, and going to the rock at the top of the image. Track colors are as follows: Russ=cyan, Mike=yellow, Me=blue. It's 0.62 miles from the bottom rock to the top rock, at a compass heading of 260 degrees.

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Old 03-23-2012, 08:47 AM   #161
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Scott, this thread is pure torture.

Earlier in the thread you suggested you would one day later consider opening up the GPS tracks for all. I implore you not to. Seriously, this should be reserved for a select few that you trust in a couple of years it may be closed or ruined.

One of my other past times is caving, in particular surveying & mapping caves which I guess is why I like rally so much too. Anyway there is a code of secrecy among cavers, the whereabouts of new caves and especially beautiful ones are protected even among cavers. The reason is after a while everyone and his dog wants to do the cave and it gets damaged.

You are laying out a series of enduro routes that quite large population group would love to get their hands on. No disrespect to the enduro fanatics out there, but just imagine what it could turn into.

What an amazing, inspiring project. I'm going to try the same thing here in Peru.
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Old 03-23-2012, 09:28 AM   #162
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The reason is after a while everyone and his dog wants to do the cave and it gets damaged.
That same thought has been going through my head after marking a simple 8 mile enduro loop at my local riding place. If I mark it, people will ride it and some spots shouldn't be ridden without the knowhow of riding difficult terrain otherwise the trail will be damaged quickly beyond repair. I have since stopped marking it and now keep it in my head. I don't know if I will ever finish marking it

I now understand why mountain singletrack riders in Idaho and Colorado are so sensitive about trail damage. Once its gone...
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Old 03-23-2012, 09:32 AM   #163
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Earlier in the thread you suggested you would one day later consider opening up the GPS tracks for all. I implore you not to. Seriously, this should be reserved for a select few that you trust in a couple of years it may be closed or ruined.


but of course a few key coordinates on a few of the tulips would be nice for when people get lost. Just not for the really cool bits, part of what makes those areas cool is the challenge of finding them.
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Old 03-23-2012, 09:51 AM   #164
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but of course a few key coordinates on a few of the tulips would be nice for when people get lost. Just not for the really cool bits, part of what makes those areas cool is the challenge of finding them.

I disagree - we don't need crutches - its against the spirit of a rally. If we get lost then we deserve to get lost. Thats why the Spot was developed. Just think of the fun you would have cutting a new route for Scott!
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Old 03-23-2012, 10:36 AM   #165
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Scott, this thread is pure torture.
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