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Old 11-09-2011, 02:54 AM   #226
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Location: Sydney, Aust
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Just spent the last couple of hours catching up. Awesome thread and great photos. Keep it coming
"Life is what happens while your making other plans"
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Old 11-10-2011, 08:46 AM   #227
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Again, thanks for all of the positive feedback!! It provides me the motivation to keep investing the time in these RR's!
A single adventure can change the course of a life...
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Old 11-10-2011, 08:48 AM   #228
Tall Mike
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This is a true Ride of a Lifetime!! Thanks for the RR!! The fact that all your group members are chiming in demonstrates the camaraderie that developed on this epic adventure! Well done!
(I AM a little envious! ) It's great to ride along in spirit! Subscribed!
Ride the Earth! (Pavement Optional)

stable: '05 DL1000,'06 DL650, '99 XR600R, '03 640ADV
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Old 11-10-2011, 12:36 PM   #229
Joined: Apr 2009
Location: Vancouver Washington
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I am SO enjoying this RR !!

From Oliver Twist I think "please sir, can I have some more?"...


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Old 11-11-2011, 08:40 AM   #230
Liebchen & Izzy
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Location: Alaska, Don't ride naked it's cold.
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Still jealous..

And still loving it,Keep it coming....
Liebchen & Izzy
Ridin' Alaska
BMW F650GS Twin & 1200 GS(sold)now a 990ADV :)
There are no bad roads... just bad bikes.
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Old 11-17-2011, 06:40 PM   #231
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I've pondered going on one of Charley's adventures. I'm glad you took the time to share this thread because A. now I know for sure I want to go, and B. now I know I need to improve my off-road skills first. Thanks!!!
Somewhere between One Love and Molon Labe
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Old 11-20-2011, 07:55 PM   #232
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Vingerclip to Etosha

The crash....

Today started off like any other riding day. Tim and I got up early, assembled our gear, and scrambled to grab some grub in the restaurant. We had a big day ahead of us...493 km of gravel and asphalt roads to reach Etosha National Park.

We we all stoked as this park promises to deliver sightings of the big 5 game.

We decided to split into two groups this morning, with one group blasting along gravel roads while the other group tore ass on paved roads. Adam, Tim and I decided to lead the gravel pack and set off for a very memorable ride. The roads were very windy, dusty, and covered in loose gravel. Adam led the way, followed by Tim. The dust was so thick that I decided to back off a good 1/2 mile from Tim in order to see the road. With a good dust gap established, I was thoroughly enjoying the ride. The air was still relatively cool and the scenery looked eerily similar to Monument Valley in northern Arizona and southern Utah.

After about an hour into the ride, I came up on a slight hill and noticed a sign saying sharp left corner. I crested the hill, stayed to the inside of the corner, and powered through it. I was probably doing about 50 to 60 mph. (I had no idea that Tim had gone wide and had crashed on the outside of this very corner. He was lying unconscious in the ditch when I rounded the corner. ) About 200 yards down the road, the gravel road came to an end at a T intersection. I pulled up along side Adam and shut off my engine.

"Dude, where the hell is Tim?" I asked.

"Isn't he behind you?" said Adam.

"No...he was behind you and in front of me!" I said.

Just then, it hit us. Tim had crashed. As if on cue, another rider came barreling down the road screaming like a little girl. "Guys...Guys!!! Tim crashed just up the road!! Tim is down!!"

Adam and I jumped on our bikes and rode back up the hill. Scotty was the first to arrive at Tim. We parked our bikes, and raced down off the road, past Tim's battered bike, and straight into an acacia thorn bush. Tim had flown a good 10 feet from his bike and impaled himself in a thorn bush. At first sight, we all thought Tim was dead. He wasn't moving, and he was pale white. The three of us stabilized Tim while trying to get his helmet off to check his breathing. Just then, he came to and started moaning, kicking, and grunting. Thank God he was okay. We tried our best to keep him from moving, but Tim is a big dude and he kept thrashing and trying to stand despite all of our efforts.

Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed another 1200 GS come crashing through the bush just feet from where we stood trying to help Tim. It was Stan. He too came over the crest of the hill, saw all of the commotion, and went off the road trying to avoid everybody. Fortunately, he just stood up on the pegs and blasted through the bush somehow managing to keep the bike upright. We then sent another rider to the top of the hill to warn all oncoming traffic. We also gave him a satellite phone out of Tim's backpack to call John, our medic, who was only 30 minutes away.

Tim was finally starting to mumble. We got his helmet off and he was moaning in pain. "My fucking back... it hurts!! I want to stand!!!" He would not stay down. Four of us decided to support him, and carry him up out of the ditch up onto the opposite side of the road. Charley arrived and tried to make light of the situation, but we all new that it could be serious.

It took five of us to get his battered bike out of the ditch.

To our surprise, it wasn't that damaged. The engine run switch was smashed, and the bike would not start. The windscreen was bent, the foglight ripped off, the bash guards bent, and the plastic was scraped.

John arrived shortly thereafter in the Land Rover. John is the owner of Motoaventures, and is one hell of a calm guy in stressful situations. Being a paramedic for years, he took control of the situation and stabilized Tim. He loaded him into the back of the rover. Five of us picked up his bike and loaded it onto the trailer attached to the Rover. They then took off for a Namibian hospital which was only 30 to 40 km away. Tim was fortunate to crash so close to medical support.

With Tim on his way to the hospital, there was nothing else the remaining guys could do. We got our shit together, and rode off towards Etosha. The riding style had changed for the remainder of the day's ride, with each person riding slightly more cautiously. The rest of the day's ride was sort of a blur to me. I was thinking about Tim, and how fragile life can be. Here we are blasting along dirt roads in the middle of Namibia on 600 pound bikes thinking we are indestructable in our riding gear, boots, and helmets. It was a harsh reality check for everyone.

It wasn't until we came across our first wild giraffes that I was able to put the crash behind me.

It was so amazing to just see wild giraffes walking down the road. We all stayed there for awhile appreciating the fact that we were riding in Africa. So far, we had seen wild elephants and wild giraffes. What a great feeling to be riding among such incredible animals.

We got to our lodge that evening, and word had spread that Tim was going to stay the night in a Namibian hospital.

Apparently, he fractured 4 to 6 vertebrae, had a major concussion, and had bruised his back pretty badly.

Su was going to stay with him. Su was driving the other support vehicle with everyone's bags.

We went out on our first safari that evening. This was my third safari, but it was so incredible. I would have posted some great photos, but my telephoto lens was on the support vehicle. (Thanks Tim!!)

It was weird not having my roomie with me that evening. We all had a nice dinner, and then sat outside by the campfire for hours just talking about the day's events. I called Tim and it was great to hear his voice. He said that he was going to try and ride his bike again in a few days. I laughed but realized he was serious. He was not going to go home. (Don't worry....the only riding he did for the remainder of the trip was in the Rover!!) What a day!

A single adventure can change the course of a life...
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Old 11-20-2011, 09:26 PM   #233
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Originally Posted by globalpilot4 View Post
Again, thanks for all of the positive feedback!! It provides me the motivation to keep investing the time in these RR's!
Wow! great RR. Thanks for sharing! Africa is on my bucket list now thanks to you : D

I am also glad to hear Charlie is a cool dude. I've enjoyed his MC movies.

Cat herder....really!
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Old 11-20-2011, 10:41 PM   #234
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: NorCal Bay Area
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Outstanding RR...brings back memories of MY childhood growing up in Africa.
For the most part I'm just a rider and occasionally lurk on ADV to check out the haps...don't usually "participate"...but this RR brings back memories of MY childhood growing up in Africa! Stirs up emotions that only those who have been to Africa would understand. Great writing and pics and vids, really feel like I was there with you.
I don't care about the logo on your pics either...they're your pics anyways...
A man should forbear boastmaking until his fierce mind fully knows which way his spleen shall expend itself. (The Wanderer)
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Old 11-21-2011, 01:55 AM   #235
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Location: Karlovac, Croatia
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Amazing! Subscribed!
How did you step in contact with Charlie? (Sorry I did nto read all, maybe you have writed somewhere...)
Croatia - A small country for a great vacation!
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:40 AM   #236
Joined: Oct 2011
Location: The Peak District, UK
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Despite having been there and thinking I knew all there was to know about the crash your description here includes several revelations particularly concerning the immediatepost crash situation and of your collective fears for Tim's very life ! As you say, it was a big wake up call amongst all us riders very much emphasised by our tour leader John in his post accident briefing.
Another excellent report.


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Old 11-21-2011, 10:00 AM   #237
Inspection due 5_31
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Joined: Aug 2010
Location: MA
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Sidestand up show 1020

Thanks for an awesome RR!

2hr shows are archived, select show 1020 for interview w/Bryce Purden at 1:41 in.

Originally Posted by Black-Ops View Post
Hey thanks for the photo credit but Jaks took most of those pics! She's stoked to see them up on the web. Keep up the great reporting.

I'm hopefully on an American radio show called Sidestand Up talking about our trip this Tuesday night U.S time.
Tune in if you can!
"Four wheels move the body,
Two wheels move the soul."
Three move you & the dog!

Cromoth screwed with this post 11-21-2011 at 10:01 AM Reason: edit text
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Old 11-21-2011, 04:59 PM   #238
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Originally Posted by Patrol View Post
I've pondered going on one of Charley's adventures. I'm glad you took the time to share this thread because A. now I know for sure I want to go, and B. now I know I need to improve my off-road skills first. Thanks!!!
Don't let that hold you back! We had a few noobs on the ride that did just fine. You can select a route that is less technical and more street oriented.
A single adventure can change the course of a life...
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Old 11-21-2011, 10:41 PM   #239
Mambo Dave
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Location: 11 ft. AMSL
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The only place I've ever ridden with (borrowed) back / spine protection was one day at a race track. I've contemplated buying my own, but am going to start really looking tonight and will probably buy some form of armor in the coming week or two due, in part, to the pictures and description of Tim's injuries. Sorry it happened to ya, Tim, but it's a good reminder to us all.

Re: allowing a patient to move from a wreck - you won't get any criticism from me. When I worked professional in EMS I didn't allow it, but I found that changes a little with strong-minded motorcyclists when you're riding with them instead of showing up, later, in an ambulance with a back-board and stretcher ready. When I had a friend go down in front of me (after hitting a deer at speed) it hit me that fighting a friend who isn't fully conscious/aware (from a concussion) to keep him down when he is injured just seems like it could exacerbate spinal injuries instead of helping them.
"After reading through this thread I've come to the conclusion
that more people cruise the internet looking for reasons why
X bike won't work in Y scenario rather than actually riding
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Old 11-22-2011, 08:55 AM   #240
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Location: Bergen Cnty, NJ
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Great job of telling the story of a not-so-great day...for me at least.

I have to thank Global Pilot and all the guys that were at the scene for helping me out and not leaving me as food for the lions. Without their calm, team effort things could have turned out much differently.

A few lessons learned that I will share:
- When riding in a wake of dust, always drop far enough back to allow yourself to see far enough ahead that affords you time to react accordingly.
- Always zip your jacket to your pants if your riding gear allows for it. I didn't and when I crashed my jacket rode up my back and defeated the purpose of a built-in spine protector. It’s a pain to do but fracturing vertebrae is more of a pain.
- Always trade emergency info with your riding buddies prior to the ride. I had shared my satellite phone info with Global Pilot during the trip and he knew right where to find it and how to use it. And by the way, having a satellite phone on this type of trip is well worth the rental fee.
- When traveling abroad be sure to take out travel insurance that covers your medical expenses as well as emergency medevac services
- Always wear clean underwear
- Try to avoid the food in Namibian hospitals.

P.S. It’s been over two months since the crash. I’ve been riding on the street since shortly after returning home (against my Doctor’s wishes). Just did my first off-road ride on my GSA on Sunday and will do a two-day event this weekend. So life is good again.
'14 BMW GSA LC, '09 & '12 F800GS, '08 Husky TE450, WR250R, and a bunch of street bikes.
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