Crash Story- going too slow
August 9, 2010 at 11:00 pm #4162Jeff in KentuckyParticipant
by C. Jeff Dyrek (not me):
I was a crazy guy back in the Navy. They called me Mad Dog Dyrek.
I’ve ridden in every kind of weather and all year round, ice, snow, rain, hail and you won’t really believe it, I even rode in clear weather too. One day my boss told me to take the day off of work and drive to the mountains, “Slowly, and enjoy the view”. He said that if I don’t slow down I’m going to kill myself. So I drove from Lemoore NAS in California to Mineral King, in the Sequoias. I did exactly like he said.
It was absolutely beautiful because it was my first time to Mineral King. The road was a dead end and there was a large parking area with a beautiful vista. The temperature was pretty cool so I kept my toes behind the cylinders to keep them warm, I did that often. But when I got to the stopping point, I put my foot on the ground and my pants leg got caught on the kick starter and I couldn’t quite reach the ground. I started yelling, “Oh Shit, Oh Shit, Oh Shit” then hit the ground. There was a CHP officer just two cars down from me and everyone in the parking lot, including him, turned around when I screamed and looked and saw the whole thing. I was really embarrassed.
On the way back home, the road was a fine sand over old asphalt. I was looking at the beautiful views and driving slow, just as my boss told me to. All of a sudden a motorhome came around the corner and I was surprised and jerked the bike out of the way and crashed. It broke my Windjammer windshield off and I got a pretty good case of body rash. The motorhome stopped and everyone ran out to see if I was ok. There was enough blood and my shirt and pants were both torn. They wanted to take me to the hospital, but I said to forget it because it would stop bleeding pretty quickly in the rushing air. They kept insisting, but I convinced them that it was just road rash and nothing serous. There are those who have and those who will, when you are talking about motorcycle riding, and I’m one of those who have.
So I drove back home to Hanford and got there just after dark. I stopped at Taco Bell and bought my usual two burritos with lettuce and a coke. I put them in the dashboard of the faring and when I drove out of their parking lot, one of them started to slip. I was going so slow I couldn’t keep balance and fell over again, just a half of a block from my house.
if I was going fast, I would have been paying total attention to the road and not the scenic views. If I was going fast on the way up to Mineral King, I would have had my feet on the foot pegs and not behind the engine. If I would have screamed out of the Taco Bell parking lot, I would have lost my burritos, not my balance.
I got back to work the next day all skinned up and with a broken windshield. The boss started screaming at me for not following his instructions and then I told him the story. I never slowed down after that. Going slow lets the brain drift and that only works for driving down highways. In the mountains, if you aren’t scraping the foot pegs, you’re not going fast enough to keep putting your full concentration on what you are doing and it just gets dangerous.
I have a million bike stories, but I was always safer going faster. That is, once I learned how to go fast. Learning is the most dangerous part of bike riding. The bad thing is, when you first feel like you are getting good at riding, that’s when you are in the most serious trouble. It takes many of years of riding to really be good at it and the very best place to learn is in the dirt. Once you have become good at dirt riding, then you will be much safer on the street.
Going Slow, in this case, caused me to have three accidents. I was always breaking windshields from one reason or another so a man named Ron Clawson, now owner of Clawson Kawasaki in Tulare, kept an extra windshield in stock for me and sold it to me at cost.
C. Jeff DyrekAugust 10, 2010 at 3:34 am #28009briderdtParticipant
Funny in parts, even.
But I question the usefullness of posting this in a beginners forum.August 10, 2010 at 11:13 am #28012Jeff in KentuckyParticipant
This part from the original article is more for beginners:
“Learning is the most dangerous part of bike riding. The bad thing is, when you first feel like you are getting good at riding, that’s when you are in the most serious trouble. It takes many of years of riding to really be good at it and the very best place to learn is in the dirt. Once you have become good at dirt riding, then you will be much safer on the street.”August 10, 2010 at 11:20 am #28014TrialsRiderParticipant
…wish I said that, Hey wait a minute, I think I didAugust 10, 2010 at 11:38 am #28015TrialsRiderParticipant
The part about going too slow to keep balance is crap. Very misleading for beginner riders. There is no relationship between balance and speed, if there was I would not be able to balance at a dead stop for extended periods. Balance is balance and speed is speed, you need to master both to be a skillful rider.August 15, 2010 at 6:52 pm #28087August 17, 2010 at 11:11 pm #28124skippersusieParticipant
Where do I get one…. NOT!August 18, 2010 at 2:57 am #28127JtownJJAParticipant
But that was funny!! I kept thinking “this isn’t real, ok, what is the punch line going to be…” Then I was really surprised to see what happened next.
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