First rally of the season


I am always amazed at how quickly I leave things behind when I get on the road. Tonight was no exception.

Due to work, I got on the road on the way to “our” local BMW motorcycle rally in Heber, AZ at 4:44 p.m. with a 2-1/2 hour ride in front of me. I managed to make all the stoplights on the way out of town, and soon was on the road, flying along, leaving all the detritus of the day trailing behind me like the tail of a comet. I didn’t even think of anything else but riding after I was five minutes into the ride.

I was wearing more clothes than I should have been, as it was in the high 80s, all my liners were in. But I knew 65 miles up the road, I would want more layers and to have my heated jacket liner on and plugged in. I was absolutely correct in that, and I pulled over in Star Valley to add more layers and plug in. The temperature dipped into the 40s as I got close to my destination, and I cranked up the heat. My heated grips were on, too.

It was a beautiful evening for riding. Clouds covered the late afternoon sun, and then, nearing my destination, the sun re-appeared, golden orange and very low in the sky. I turned into the camp where the rally is being held, and many BMW riders were already in attendance. There were people lining the narrow driveway as I rode in, and everyone smiled in welcome, sipping their beverages of choice. I checked in, then found a place to camp. My riding partner was relegated to his car on this trip. The bike problems of last summer still seem to plague him. The latest glitch is a bent rim. He bought a new one on ebay, but it didn’t arrive in time for him to put it on and ride his bike to the rally.

The funny thing is, we’ve been planning this rally since last year when we were here, wanted to bring the dual sport bikes, yet here we are, neither one of us has our dual sport bike with us. I am on the street bike, he is in the car. All the dirt rides we’d looked forward to will have to wait another year.

So, when we arrived at the rally site and after I checked in, we quickly found a place to put the tents, even though someone took our favorite spot. The light was fading fast, but it doesn’t take me very long to throw the tent up and get my stuff arranged, thanks to organized packing on my part! I’ve done this enough times now that I know how to pack things in the way that will make unloading and setting up most efficient. So, once we set up camp, we drove into the nearby small town for dinner at one of our favorite places, The Red Onion, in Heber.

While we were inside, it grew colder outside and rained gently, just enough to make everything wet, but not enough to be a deluge. On the way back to the rally site, we passed one of the motels in town and instead of feeling like I wanted to be in there, I was glad I was not. I wanted to feel warm and cozy inside my little tent and in my warm sleeping bag.

I hope I sleep well tonight, and with the rain, it is a real possibility. None of this usual “ghost walking” like I do at the summer rallies, especially the one in Paonia. Maybe it’s too warm for me then, or maybe it’s because I am a fall/winter girl. I am fairly sure that I will sleep well tonight, nested into my comfy bedding with the cold fresh air around me, and the soft tapping of the rain on the tent above me.

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3 thoughts on “First rally of the season

  1. A year of planning and Mr. Riding Partner still could not have his motorcycle ready for the trip. A year of planning and you couldn’t get there in time to claim your favorite camping spot. A year of planning and you forgot to bring enough cash for meals and stuff.

    On the other hand, a year of planning and you do have your packing down to an efficient, organized method. A year of planning and you did bring the correct amount of clothing layers to move into cold weather and back to the heat afterward. A year of planning and you did make it to one of your favorite Beemer events as scheduled.

    So, have Mr. Riding Partner do a Lessons Learned activity so he can maybe have a motorcycle available for your next trip.

    • #1 lesson learned: never rely on the USPS to get something where it’s needed on time. Duh.

      The reason we can’t get there on time to claim our favorite spot is the usual four-letter word: work.

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