There’s not much fun to be had riding a KLR650 on a highway, as slowly as you can to save the knobbies, but fast enough just to get home at night and with temperatures hovering toward the zero mark. But that is the price you pay (and a cheap one at that) for a simply gorgeous fall day riding the trails in southern New Brunswick.
The purpose of this trip? Well, apart from the obvious – fun! – it was twofold;
- to put some dirt miles on the project KLR to try out the last few adaptations I made, and …
- to scout the final part of a 450 km loop that I’m hoping will be the route for the 2014 Fundy Dual Sport Rally.
It’s a rather ambitious plan but we’ve been looking at ways to create new and interesting rallies after producing the highly successful and unique Mad Bastard Scooter Rally. This in turn lead to the creation of the relatively new Dawn 2 Dusk rally that to date has been run for the last three years out here in the Maritimes.
Oddly, rallies seem to be a unique thing to CMG (Cycle Canada long ago dumping out the Sportbike Rally), though I find it somewhat sad that no-one else makes the effort either. As a magazine you have an audience and I think it is important for a magazine to explore not only what it can do with that audience but to also try and see what it can do for the sport that ultimately feeds us all.
Rallies are now as important to CMG as the daily content that we serve up and although they require equal parts work, imagination and out-of-the-box thinking, they offer great satisfaction for us and (hopefully) the reader/participant as well. Unfortunately it’s hard to really monetize them and get sponsors on board – we’re all hurting – and without that element it makes it hard to justify all the work, but when you physically get to experience the results of the original idea, there’s not much that is more rewarding.
But I digress. Suffice to say that yesterday, Southern New Brunswick gave me a perfect blue sky, decent (daylight) warmth and a mixture of trails that both wowed with fall colours and punished with some rather large mud holes. It may be the end of the riding season, but it’s also my favourite time to ride and a last hurrah is just what the doctor ordered to top up the motorcycle soul for the inevitable dark days ahead. I also got a rally route to boot (and boots filled with icy water!) so let’s see what we can pull off with it in 2014.
Thanks to my partner in (rally) crime, Brad Crossman for agreeing to ride with me on many days this summer to fulfil this endeavour.
Check out all the pics that go with this story! Click on the main sized pic to transition to the next or just press play to show in a slideshow.