Here's the ride report for the 3 day pinetop ride that featured Tom, Tim, Tom, Monte, & me. Tom B. met me in Camp Verde on Monday, 7/13/09 at about 7:30 am. We rode up 260, then cut over to the rim road. It was about 1/2 hr on pavement, then mostly dirt the rest of the way.
At the start of the rim road.
The rim road follows the edge of the mogollon rim (pronounced 'muggy-on'). It was also an old army & indian trail.. part of it was used by general crook for the forced march of the Apache indians to the white mountains.
The riders: Tom & Scotty.
The views along the rim road are spectacular.. even though this day there was some haze from burning.. both some small forest fires they were letting burn, & some controlled burns to clear the forest.
But all along the rim road are terrific view spots. The road is dirt, but fairly easy.
The firecracker penstemon's were blooming everywhere.. the reds on them are unbelievably bright.
Were it not for the distant haze, you could have seen for 100 miles.
The first part of the rim road ended back on hwy 260, & i thought we could cross to the dirt road on the other side of the highway & connect back to the rim road. But we got on another road that was taking us further west & south along the young/heber road. So we made our way back to 260 & took it about 7 miles to where the rim road continued to pinetop. We did stop for gas at a small station there.
Tom wanted me to ride his honda & see what a real motorcycle is like. It was very nice. The suspension is plush & the seat is like sitting on a lazy boy. I rode it for a few miles, then stopped & waited for Tom to catch up.
We were about 25 miles from pinetop at this point. Tom had ridden about 80 to camp verde, and we had ridden another 80 or so to here. But we started getting into the dried ruts in the road.. evidently some 4x4's had ridden on this road after the last rain. But the ruts were very hard, steep, & had loose sand & gravel on them. There was enough room to miss them, so we were able to keep our speed up.. probably around 30mph through them. Tom was back on his honda leading the way. I was keeping up, about 50 yds back when he got into a rut. His back end started kicking from side to side, then he flipped sideways & started doing cartwheels. It was tom-honda-tom-honda for a while, then tom got spit out to the left, rolled a few more times & the honda skidded to a stop. I was horrified. I got up to him as he was trying to get up. I told him to sit there & see where he was hurt. I picked up the bike so gas wouldn't keep leaking out & engulf us in flames, & returned to tom to assess the damage.
If you would have seen this crash & i told you the rider sustained multiple fractures, you would believe it. But amazingly Tom had a few lacerations & a tweaked thumb & knee. He got up & walked around. After seeing him go down, i thought we might have to airlift him out. But he was more worried about the bike.
When the bike started flipping sideways, it did a couple of full flips going down the road. There was some damage to the bark busters, a turn signal was broken off, the seat popped up from the hook to the bike, the mirror broke off, but everything else was ok & working. It is almost as tough as Tom.
This was the worst laceration.. a nasty scrape along his arm. His jersey has a big hole in it, as well as the shirt underneath.
It's the first time i've used this.. hopefully the last.
We washed off the scrapes with drinking water, but since we didn't have enough antiseptic cream or spray to get everything, i just taped some gauze pads on the wounds & he put another shirt on & started working on the bike.
We had to take off the bracket for his rack in order to get the seat back on.. plus the front forks were twisted, so we had to loosen the clamps to set them straight.
The ruts along the road continued for miles.. we decided to cut over to the pavement a few miles away & continue in to Pinetop that way. But the first road we took fizzled out in some burnt & fallen pine trees & we had to double back. Our water was mostly gone, Tom was shaken & a little woozy riding along, & it looked like some monsoon rains might start. But we finally made it to the hotel in pinetop. It took us about 3.5hrs to go the last 30 miles. It was about 2 pm when Tom went down, & nearly 6 when we checked in.
We got our room, & soon after Tim pulled in with his truck & bike in the back. He had some back issues & didn't feel he could ride for 3 days, but decided to truck out, ride one day, then truck back. Tim is a retired health care professional, so be sure to have him along when you crash. we went to the pharmacy while tom showered & cleaned up his wounds, then Tim cleaned them up more with some antiseptic ointment, taped some gauze pads on the scrapes, taped up his thumb, & gave Tom one of his pain killers. Tom was out hobbling around in no time.
We had set it up with Monte, a local guy, to meet for a beer & look over maps for the next day's ride. He couldn't get off work, but was real nice to stop by & give us some tips for good riding areas. Monte has a nice klr 650 that he goes everywhere on. He has it rigged up for long distance riding, but it's always amazing to me where these 650 guys can go. We met at the chinese restaurant across the street, told some stories, recounted Tom's grueling crash, & pondered the next day's ride. It was great to meet Monte, & i'll recommend him highly for his knowledge of the area & great personality.
Tom was pretty wiped out from the crash & Tim's pain pills, so we pretty much went straight to bed after we got back from dinner, though it was past 9..
End of day 1.
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