May 28, 2009 at 2:59 pm #2906
So, next weekend I’m going up to Lake George NY for my first bike rally. I’m really excited about going to Americade, as it’s supposed to be a mixed manucaturer touring rally, so hopefully no one screams ‘rice rocket’ as I go by
Anyway, this being my first rally, I’m hoping to sign up for some of the manufacturers demo rides. Does anyone have any experience with the demo rides? How far do they let you take them? Do they have any requirements (other than saftey equipment, I’m all about atgatt)
I’m also hoping to go on some of the group rides and such while I’m there. Are their any group riding points of etiquette that I should be careful to observe??
So if any of you have some rally experience and have some helpful hints to share please do!May 29, 2009 at 1:47 am #19015
Some will require a First Aid kit be on board…. depends on the organization.May 29, 2009 at 3:30 am #19029
If no one here has any experience I’ll have to take some pics and write a bit on the experience.May 29, 2009 at 7:35 pm #19048
I’ve not been to a rally yet but have been on group rides. Each group has its own style and rules and this should be communicated to you by the ride leader. I’m not sure what type of rally this is but be wary of the inexperienced riders around you. If it is a cruiser group I would watch out for social riders who have poor control. Especially as these groups tend to ride in tight parade formation. If it is a sport bike group I would watch out for squids who ride too fast and take chances with everyone’s safety.
I have had a lot of fun with group rides but you do need to spend a lot of your limited attention span on those around you instead of the road. With a bit of common sense you can manage the risks, have a good time and get some great rides in.June 8, 2009 at 3:42 pm #19444
Just got back and all I can say is that it was flippin’ schweet!
It was a really nice weekend weather wise up in Lake George NY, and the beautiful scenery up in the adirondacks was spectacular. I rode around like crazy around the lake and the adjoining areas when I wasn’t checking out all the vendors that were hocking their specialty bike goods. So a few good and bad things about going to a rally.
Good – Sooooooo many bikes to see, estimated about 50,000 this weekend. Now this was a touring rally, so most were goldwings, ultraglides, concourses, and those big BMW tourers and such. Also got to see some cool side cars, trailers etc. In among the touring beasts were some great sport and cruiser bikes and some really crazy custom choppers. Tons to see, plenty of friendly people, and a big big party every night. The riding out there is also amazing. Tons of twisty mountain roads provide hours of amusement and definitly got the odometer spinnin’.
Bad – With all the bikes on the road, it became a mad dash to pull out into traffic to do no more than 10mph (at best) on the main drag. It was kinda a stop and go drill like exercise in feathering the clutch and staying balanced without touching your feet down, just drawn out to a half hour or so at a time.
The other bad element of the rally, is it tends to bring out all the bikers that give bikers a bad name. You’ll see everything from the “loud pipes saves lives” guy that thinks since he has the loudest drag pipes around, no safety equipment or riding courtesy is necessary and he can ride as recklessly as he likes because he has loud pipes.
You also end up with a few of the crotch rocketeers high revving antics doing burn outs in the middle of traffic then losing control when the tires suddenly find traction. That’s an embarrassing sight when you are sitting on a sport bike yourself. There are also the guys that drive way too fast. One guy didn’t get the chance to learn his lessonJune 8, 2009 at 4:33 pm #19445
Ouch. Glad you had a good time.
Loud pipes “can” save lives at times… but that doesn’t give you a pass slip to bust ear drums. I just de-baffled the stocks on my 9 and they are loud enough to hear about 1/2 mile away if I am really gagging it. It doesn’t do much purpose on highways or for anything in front. For me the purpose is “the lady doing her nails about to blow the light” types that I catch in my mirrors. I can gag the throttle and wake them up. I soooo avoid riding in town they just stress me out. Too much for everyone to look at except whats in front of them.
I wish we had more rides and bike fests here… I think the biggest we have is sponsored by Scootworks. The HD dealers have some also but I am really gun shy about those, alot of unsavory types like to attend to, between their back up and my …well let’s just say if they get on the redneck side of me…. the outcome will likely be bad.. so for sake of prevention I choose avoidance. Of course having your Saturdays a mandatory workday does not hinder that process either. Wish someone would do somethign on Sunday every now and again.June 8, 2009 at 6:32 pm #19449
You can always get a jump start on Laconia!
I think that starts the 13th or 14th…
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