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Old 09-19-2010, 02:31 PM   #1
Stovebolt OP
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Full-Battle Cattle-Rattle; Stovey lays "Casper" down

This isn't a big giant crash story - it's a little one. Yes, I got off lucky, but there are several take-home messages.

Actual happenings:

I wound around the North end of the Tetons on my way home from work - an occasional Friday evening treat for me. Takes from 3.5 - 4.5 hours, depending on route, weather, stops made for views etc.. This time of year the daylight goes away sooner rather than later, and it's a night-time finish under headlight. Not a big deal, even with my no-roadworthy setup on my street-legal KTM 450 Six Days. The stock headlight is no good for anything over 45mph, arguably less speed than that. I travel about 30-35 on the dirt roads in the forest at night with this light. The Trailtech X3 is on my short list, along with the stator to run it, but I just haven't bought it and put it on yet. Until I do, I should remember not to overrun my headlamp. Period.

I stop on a farm road hilltop at 8pm and admire the half-moon and Venus rising, call my wife and check in, arrange for a nice pizza night at home with the dogs. Life is good. While standing there before donning my helmet, I honest-to-God reflect on how absolutely cool this new bike is, and how much I just love it. It fits like a glove and runs like a raped ape. I've never crashed it and it just turned 3000 miles (lots of dirt roads.) Hell, I think again - "....it's never even been dropped!"

Okee dokee....

An hour later, at mile 177.5 on a 178-mile Teton circumnavigation, and after having wound my way through literally miles of roaming free-range cattle on the backroads of this ride - a usual part of dodging hazards and no trick to it; slow down, be watchful, cruise through...... I meet up with about 25-30 head of moo-ing roadblocks completely saturating the narrow gravel roadway from one side to the other, and both ditches. I was on them so fast it was insane, and I had been doing 45mph at last check. When I crested the small knoll, there they were, and I rattled through and nailed a few before getting it lowsided. There was no impact episode for me, I managed to get away from both the bike and the cow(s) in terms of a direct impact, and I scrubbed most of my speed with my left side - head, shoulder and hip - with both hands leading the way before folding them back behind me as I ground to a halt. I stood up and I said @$#%! pretty deliberately and was simultaneously grateful and amazed to be standing. The cows were trotting past me as I got the bike up and fired it. I had to re-pass them, but there were still cattle behind me as I left - I got through about 1/4 of them somehow before I hit the "Crew Eject" button.

Damage to bike - fractured headlight mask, jammed it into a big cow's ass. Must have happened damned soon after I was leaving the motorcycle - I never felt a jolt. Scrape on left side handguard, flecked the reflective tape on the edge. Scratch on left plastic handguard spoiler. That was it. Paul Degarate makes the best handguards on the planet if you ask me. Highway Dirtbikes is the company, and those handguards helped in ways I can't measure, but strongly suspect are significant.

Damage to me - no skin broken. No bones broken. Nothing sprained. Bruised and sore, yep. Everything that touched ground was covered in protection. Pressure suit underneath Acerbis jacket did the job and kept the scraping to a non-event. Jacket gravel-worn through on the sleeve and shoulder. Arai helmet scraped along and sheared off the left side visor/face shield base plate, screws and pressure plate. Nicked up the paint. It was a gentle helmet rub - I never even bounced my noggin. So I had that going for me.

Take home messages:

1) Don't overrun your lighting. When you are on the cusp, you are on the edge. Decelerate hard and you pitch your headlight down and cut your front line visibility in half (in my case on my bike with my suspension.)

2) Don't get lax about your route, previous road hazard conditions change. Plan for the cows that were never there before, to be there. Especially when you know the road (like I knew there was a small rise in the road....)

3) A half a mile from home, ain't "home" yet. Stay frosty.

4) Be a gymnast in High School and a diver in College.

5) ATGATT

For penance I spent 11 hours yesterday toiling in a log deck turning logs into rounds, then splits, and hauling four loads home in my truck. So, 2.5 cords later, I'm stiff and sore and ready to be 21 again.

Enjoy the Fall, ride safe - ride smart. Invest in things you know you should, like headlights and helmet lighting.

Seizure later,

Sincerely,

Stovey








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Old 09-19-2010, 05:20 PM   #2
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Ya dung good boy!

Way ta go Cowboy! Great skid mark. Glad yer OK.
You're right though, Dual Sporting offers a whole new list of dangers I never considered riding trails only. The KTM is light but with a 350 - 500 lb rig you have to overcome mass in motion and gravel roads don't help. I've seen the deep side of a few Appalachian swithchbacks lateley - without cows.
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Old 09-19-2010, 06:12 PM   #3
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Yimmy,

Yah, I ding good..... seriously right up a cow's ass with the front of my motorcycle. (No cows were killed or seriously injured as a result of the mishap - I checked in with my neighbor at 0900 yesterday morning to let him know that I waded into his herd the night before, so we could check and make sure none were injured.)

Although I didn't do any bovine examinations personally, I can't imaging not finding the word "ACERBIS" embossed into one of those cow colons.

Here's a data point of interest to me lately then:

http://trailtech.net/light_comparison.html

I'm sure I won't have the scratch together before the next "Legends of the Fall" Trans-Nevada Rally Raid, but it's on my radar.

Yimmy - stay the hell out of the Appalachian ditches man! If you go down in one of those, and you hear banjo music, just stay low. Real low.....

Stovey
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Old 09-19-2010, 09:29 PM   #4
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Your annoying yellow font is only exceeded by what my english teacher called wordiness. Just saying.
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Old 09-20-2010, 05:31 AM   #5
Stovebolt OP
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Font is orange.

"English" below should be capitalized. "Wordiness" should be in quotation marks.

Ride well, Jon.

Stovey
*******************************


Quote:
Originally Posted by Forty Years Ago
Your annoying yellow font is only exceeded by what my english teacher called wordiness. Just saying.
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:16 AM   #6
danachap
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stovebolt
Although I didn't do any bovine examinations personally, I can't imaging not finding the word "ACERBIS" embossed into one of those cow colons.
wouldn't that be "SIBRECA" instead? glad you're ok
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Old 09-20-2010, 04:35 PM   #7
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Danachap,

Yes - you speak the truth. It would just depend on which side of the "membrane" you were reading it from. I'm glad I didn't get that duty. ("Doody?")

Thanks for the kind words as well my friend!

Stovey
************************************************** ****

Quote:
Originally Posted by danachap
wouldn't that be "SIBRECA" instead? glad you're ok
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Old 11-09-2010, 07:32 AM   #8
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Wow, I am glad you came out of it well! Thanks for passing along the words of wisdom! You are to be congratulated for being well protected too!
Cheers!
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Old 11-09-2010, 01:27 PM   #9
Gentri in GA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stovebolt
Yimmy,
Yah, I ding good..... seriously right up a cow's ass with the front of my motorcycle.
Stovey
I'll be laughing at your write up for a bit... it's the small things for me! ... and thanks for the reminders.

Glad all is well, cows included. I've almost looked too deeply into a few N. GA mountain gullies... one I'm really glad I didn't visit was named "Rock Garden", which is saying something in the mtns....

Those light comparison pictures are amazing.... nice link.
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Old 11-09-2010, 01:41 PM   #10
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Great write up! You're a good neighbor and glad nobody too hurt other than that $450 helmet .

Good wordsmith too. But what a commute!
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Old 11-09-2010, 05:57 PM   #11
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Thanks Patrice...

Kind words my friend - thank you!

Stovey
***************************


Quote:
Originally Posted by RideDualSport.com
Wow, I am glad you came out of it well! Thanks for passing along the words of wisdom! You are to be congratulated for being well protected too!
Cheers!
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:00 PM   #12
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Yo Gentri...

I'm glad somebody got a chuckle out of it, hell - it was paid for... may as well get some mileage out of it, right? :-O

Those Trailtech lights are really good. Nothing wrong with the Baja Designs either, in my opinion; but that Trailtech X3 is for me. I'll be "lazer-ing" them cows next Spring, to be sure!

Stay outa them Georgia gullies too!

Stovey
*************************************************


Quote:
Originally Posted by Gentri in GA
I'll be laughing at your write up for a bit... it's the small things for me! ... and thanks for the reminders.

Glad all is well, cows included. I've almost looked too deeply into a few N. GA mountain gullies... one I'm really glad I didn't visit was named "Rock Garden", which is saying something in the mtns....

Those light comparison pictures are amazing.... nice link.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:06 PM   #13
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Pantah man,

Thanks for the solid my brutha, thanks.

I got the helmet fixed. Sure coulda ended in tears though, eh?

I am lucky with the commute - living where I do, I get some sweet opportunities. Still, I had to run away to Nevada a few weeks ago, and sample some more desert.

Ride report in progress on these forums - one here on ADV Rider has some "iffy" video posted by my riding partner, and the other has some different pics - but same story, same ride, same report, same clowns in action:

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=630870

http://ridedualsport.com/forum/index.php?topic=1378.0

As for my word wrangling, your comment taken humbly and sincerely.

Salute back to ya my friend.

Stovey
********************************************
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pantah


Great write up! You're a good neighbor and glad nobody too hurt other than that $450 helmet .

Good wordsmith too. But what a commute!
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