Recreation and Entertainment, Wildwood

Bracing For Impact

Here is my first world trouble when it comes to the drought we’ve been having: Riding the 4wheelers. Oh my gawd! It has been so dusty. The trails are hard as cement so the riding has been bumpy and uncomfortable. We’ve spent the summer working on our lots and then just taking short little rides through the woods and then heading right back to the camper or down to the lake to cool off. The lack of rain has bee a total buzz-kill for my fun times. (I know, I know…there are starving children around the world and I’m whining because I’ve been having a hard time playing.)

When it began raining on Friday I could barely contain my excitement to get out to Wildwood and ride the 4 wheelers in the mud! Seriously, ya’ll, there is nothing more fun than riding in the mud! And holy schmokes, there was a lot of mud!!! There is a main dirt road that we take up into the woods to get to the majority of the trails and there is no way to go straight up the hill. There have been ruts dug into the trails from the amount of ATV activity and once the rain went away last spring, those ruts hardened into miniature canyons. With the rain over the weekend and the constant running of the 4 wheelers, those ruts are smoothing out but they are still there, buried under layers of wet, red clay! And when your wheels get into the ruts you just ride in them because there is no maneuvering your way out. Mark led the way in the Razer our first trip into the woods, with Matt following him and me taking up the tail slot. I could see Mark and Matt both heading up the hill sideways. I thought they were just horsing around because that’s what they do. But then my tail end tried to make its way around to say hello to my front end. You basically ride up this hill with your handlebars cranked to the right so that when your tail end slides around you are still going somewhat straight. When we got to the top of the hill Matt and Mark were just laughing at the amount of effort and lack of control they had on the ascent. We shut the ATVs off and laughed and visited there at the top of the hill reminiscing about something that had just happened moments before and trying to decide which of the paths to take (the top of the hill separates into five main trails, with other trails separating from there. 400+ acres of trails to ride on.) There are some that I still haven’t tried after three years of owning a lot out here.

He loves his new toy.

Anyway, we decided that Matt could take the lead and choose the trail so he took off. Mark looked at me with pure evil in his eyes and I knew I was about ready to get a mud bath and there was nothing I was going to be able to do about it. He laid on his gas, but with the mud, he made no forward progression and his tires just spit mud at me. Softball and larger size chunks of mud. The tires of the razer are wider than the normal bikes and I just ducked my head as I waited to get pelted with gallons of mud. Trust me. I was PRETTY!

We rode for a few hours. I could have ridden longer, but was pretty much forced to stop. I was in the lead on one of the trails. It’s my favorite trail. Narrow and winding. You can’t get up to any speed at all, but it’s fun anyway. We had gone through the whole thing and were about 100 yards from where the small trail joined up with a big trail and coming around the last bend there were two paths around a big tree. The one on the right looked like the rut was fairly deep and filled with water. The left route was still rutted but didn’t look as deep…still fill with water. So I chose the left route. That was MY choice. As I went to switch to the shallower rut, the bike decided that my tires should stay between the two paths. Straight for the tree. I instantly let off the gas and had the handlebars cranked to the left trying to make the turn, but the bike kept going straight. Hands on the hand brake. Foot on the foot brake. Cranking to the left for all I was worth yet still going straight. DOINK! Right into the tree. At a whopping 5mph. I burst out with a laughing, “Well fuck a duck!” Then I put the thing in reverse, backed off the tree, and headed to the main trail where it was relatively flat so we could scope out the damages.

See. Pretty!

I have a brush guard on Big Blue, but not a very big one. Not sure why the brush guard isn’t more stable because it’s our most powerful bike (well, until we bought the razer). The smaller bike has a massive brush guard. Anyway, I think the worst that happened to the poor bike is it kinked something electrical because it runs great until I turn the lights on, and the lights act like a kill switch. So we’ll load up my big, blue baby and take her into Mark’s buddy who does all our ATV work and she’ll be right as rain before I have a chance to miss her.

I love the mud!!!!


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