Martin’s ‘Big Adventure’ Weekend

Playing games like riding a big BMW R1200GS over 4x4s is fun and a great way to improve off-road riding skills

Playing games like riding a big BMW R1200GS over 4x4s is fun and a great way to improve off-road riding skills

Martin’s ‘Big Adventure’ Weekend

            An enthusiastic crew of adventure bike riders turned up last weekend for two days of off-road riding at a sprawling farm west of Edmonton.

Edmonton Black Gold Beemer motorcycle club member Martin, graciously hosted the event.  Two days of low key, low pressure, off-road riding took place under the guidance and coaching of Wolfgang Simmert, BGB member, certified BMW motorcycle riding instructor and one of the organizers behind the BMW GS Challenge event for Western Canada.

Some twenty-one motorcyclists and a handful of family and friends were on hand to ride, spectate or volunteer as ‘spotters’.  Martin’s farm proved to be an excellent venue for the two days, with a large, thick woodlot spread across rolling terrain serving as a main practice field.   Riding activities included slow speed maneuvering through a slalom course, slow riding over obstacles such as 4x4s, 4x6s, stacked wooden pallets of varying heights, deep sand/soil riding, and steep hill ascents/descents to name a few.

In addition to the normal fleet of BMW R1200GSes of varying vintage (including two new 2013 liquid-cooled models), there were Kawasaki KLR650s, Honda Varaderos, and BMW F650/F800GSes.

A thick woodlot offered a deep soil challenge.  Here, riders learn how it feels to make a sharp, slow speed turn in deep dirt

A thick woodlot offered a deep soil challenge. Here, riders learn how it feels to make a sharp, slow speed turn in deep dirt

 

Three of the twenty-one Black Gold Beemer club members who spent the weekend 'off-road riding' at a farm near Edmonton

Three of the twenty-one Black Gold Beemer club members who spent the weekend ‘off-road riding’ at a farm near Edmonton

And proving that it’s the rider and his or her riding skill – not the motorcycle – that makes adventure riding possible, Rick D. showed up on his beautifully restored nineteen-eighty-something BMW LS650 boxer streetbike, resplendent in camouflage bodywork and fitted with knobbies.  Rick showed no hesitation in tackling the numerous, difficult off-road ‘stages’ along with those aboard genuine ‘trailies.’

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