Road Rally nOOb - Now with more rallies & daytrippin

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by Boondoggle, Jul 31, 2015.

  1. bobcat

    bobcat recalculating

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    Thanks Boonie! I've spent some time today getting my Weestrom rally-ready for NIITWIT. Sorting out the multiple GPS scenario. Can't wait to hear about VOID!
  2. WayneJ

    WayneJ What?

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  3. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    So I got a little bit lucky on this one. If you follow this stuff enough you know that whether it's the 10-hour mini rally or the Iron Butt Rally itself, sometimes it's just your day and sometimes it's just not.

    I got the GPS files a couple weeks ago. The file came with all the waypoints and one note- there are 5 waypoints on the Lincoln Highway, that if you run in a row(either direction) with nothing in between them, you get a sizeable bonus. The LINC combo. 36 Points each, plus 144 combo bonus, so the benchmark was 354 points. Only bonus they mentioned, so if there are no twists, combos, surprises, reversals, or other fuckery, It's a good basis for a plan.

    Here's almost all of the bonuses (chopped a few off each border)

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  4. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    Where I got lucky is that the Rally Book didn't throw any weird stuff at us. I had already had time to think thru the files. I didnt have to rethink my plan, the ride came down to who showed up with the best plan and who was able to ride their plan.

    I kept looking at the map above and failed to find anything better than the LINC combo. Yeah there were lots of attractive bonuses out there in Philadelphia and on the Eastern Shore but they were isolated. I briefly considered the CSSN bonus in Kinston NC because I like King's BBQ.

    I also did my best to get the MPCH bonus below Morgantown in there just because the riding is so good in and out of there.

    I ended up with this



    or, in more detail, this

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  5. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    I travelled for work all week, got home at 11:00 thursday night, went to work and then ran to the rally friday night. Hadn't slept more than 5 hours all week long.

    I'm suddenly feeling exhausted so this story shall be continued tomorrow.
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  6. BkerChuck

    BkerChuck Been here awhile

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    Great getting to meet up with you at the banquet. Great job on the podium finish! Mona and I were very happy with 5th and 6th out of the PA start group. I mean when Jim Owen wins and 2 of the other 3 top guys are IBR finishers coming in right after them is a good ending in my book! Trying the 31 hour next year?
  7. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    now I know who you are:lol3
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  8. BkerChuck

    BkerChuck Been here awhile

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    Boonie, do NOT let Lakota hold your rally flag.....Just a friendly word of advice. :rofl
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  9. Patch

    Patch Long timer

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    Had a blast, and a great rally. Nice route Boonie, I was wondering where you found those extra points. I was just a wee bit conservative as I didn't want to end up pressed at the end and so doubling back on my route out left the possibility of additional points. I should have adjusted to a more circular run given I was running ahead of my pace goal.
    The GPS did cost me 12 points, but that did;t make a difference - it was the route back that did. Oh well ... live and learn and all that. And now onto the next one
    :D
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  10. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    Aha! Didn't know you were on ADV, now it all adds up! I shoulda recognized the "geeser" earlier

    I still blame myself for the flag thing, damn it.
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  11. lakota

    lakota Geeser

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    [QUOTE="
    I still blame myself for the flag thing, damn it.[/QUOTE]

    Not even close to being your problem
  12. LadyDraco

    LadyDraco KillerSmileIHazIt !!

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    :lurk
  13. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    So like I said I was feeling a little bit worn out Friday night. After adding the 48pt bonus near Mt. Vernon my base route was 10hrs, 34min on google maps without accounting for any stops. I knew I could get the big combo in and get back for the 72 point combo without too much trouble, beyond that I wasn't sure.

    It's pretty easy to cruise 5-10mph over the limit and beat the GPS and google maps. 10-15 or 15-20 over takes a lot more focus and I just didn't feel like I could do that smoothly so I skipped an easy 12pt bonus (Iwo Jima memorial), 24 (pic of some pigs at a volvo dealer) and a couple more 12's on the way out. I was pretty sure I could get two 24's on the way back in up near Winchester. Would really liked to have hit the 48 closer to Pittsburgh (maybe I could have) or the 24 just West of I 81 (probably not) but like I said, I just couldn't see it.

    It turns out I was smart to be conservative- I got rolling and wasn't even 10 miles up the road when I realized my EZPass was no longer stuck to my windshield (works FINE on my old bike damn it, it was on the garage floor when I got home). Also, I went unnecessarily long out of my way for gas, got in a snit because the first one I stopped at didn'thave a rest room. Second one didn't either but by the time I munched a snack and finished my tour of the Western PA Poorly Equipped Fuel Facilities I'd put myself back by 25 minutes.

    this is the link to the google map with waypoints, if anybody wants to fart around with it- probably smart to c&p it into your own google docs so we don't have 25 Morans messing around on one map.

    linky: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1GZqFqXnfLwGatmT3CYtgo5kz7XE&usp=sharing
  14. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    if sharing that link is a faux pas, let me know and I'll nuke it.

    But you can see that with only one combo, the problem is simiplified: do it or find something better.

    So I got to registration friday and immediately ran into Patch (who I met at TLNE last fall) and Lakota and Lakota's daughter who were so welcoming and generous to me a couple years ago. I checked in, took a nap, went down to rider sign-in at 5. Most of the 10-hour crew, including LudemJo and another first-timer, went over to grab dinner then came back for the 7pm rider's meeting.

    It should be noted that the rallymasters are the kind of people who, if you dnf in 2016, will stick your shirt in your bag for 2017.

    after the meeting I was feeling pretty tired. I went back for one more look at the route, found no better ideas, and hit the sack at around 8:30. Did I mention that there were at least two other groups at the convention center? Well my bed-time was about the time of the pre-party in the room next door...

    It was after midnight before I got to sleep for good. I woke up at 4:07 saturday morning, which sucked because I had two really loud alarms set for 4:30 and placed right beside the wall that adjoined Party Central.

    I was packed and caffeinated with plenty of time, so I took some more time with my route then went for gas and a bagel at 5:20. Got to the rider's meeting at 5:30, we did our thing and were on the road by 5:50.
  15. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    After the meeting friday night I was walking back to my room with Gregg Lenentine, who has ridden more IBR's than I have different rallies. At that time I still thought my route was a distraction and that there was something better out there that I just couldn't find.

    The first time I thought I was on to something was saturday morning when Lakota and I compared notes and we were somewhat on the same page.

    When they turned us loose, one other rider took the secret back alley behind the hotel toward the highway... then took a left when he shoulda taken a right. I'm pretty sure I was the first one to get on the road.

    I got to the first bonus just as the sun was rising. Even in metro DC, being on a bike when the sun comes up is one of my favorite things. A couple miles short, I started picturing the stop in my head. A little mantra, "Stop, Odo, sidestand, key, topcase, write the mileage, flag, camera, hang it, shoot it, check 'em slow. Write the time, check your notes, write the next stop, lock it all up, look at the bonus again, GPS the next one, go".

    I arrived and did my routine. Lenentine pulled in just as I was rolling out, and I met another half-dozen riders on my way back toward 95.



    I rode up to 395, skirted DC, and rode up 270 to 81 jumping off to cut across to the easternmost LIN bonus. Again, you can see the stuff I passed, a couple of which were really easy. I'm not sorry.

    I damn near left my flag here- if I hadn't looked back at it, I would have



    East in occasionally thick fog, ran into a Tennessee 24-hour rider at the next bonus.



    The next bonus was a big sculpture of a bicycle. I swear to god, because of the angle of the sun and all the contrasts it took me about 10 minutes to get a decent picture of it. Really glad I zoomed in after each few shots, because my flag and number got washed out Every. Damn. Time. It would have cost me 36 for the bonus and 144 for the combo.

    "flag, camera, hang it, shoot it, check 'em slow"

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  16. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    After this stop I started seeing more riders coming eastbound. It's not just the lights, the gear, or (as some have suggested) the aroma. Rally bikes just look different when they're underway.

    Met a guy on an Airhead at this one



    ran into Patch somewhere between here and the final stop. To be honest I didn't recognize him, was trying to figure out if I could make it on one fuel stop.



    "write the time, check your notes" yup, this is where the combo goes.



    Down toward the PA turnpike. I already explained the dearth of gas stations with indoor plumbing, will not repeat myself. Filled up there.

    I REALLY wanted to go get the 48 point bonus just east of there, but I just knew it wouldn't work. As it was, checked back in with about 18 minutes before DNF and my fuel light just a few miles from coming on. So I headed East, paying cash on the PA turnpike :baldy . I got to the 72 point bonus and got my shot just as Lakota and his daughter ( I don't mean to refer to her in a diminuitive way - I just don't know if she has an ADV handle. but she's pretty much in charge :lol3 )




    So when I'd met other riders at checkpoints they had mostly been chatty. I was packed and hopped across the street to say a quick hello, then split. I was about 8 miles down the road when Daughter blew past me, followed by Lakota. He was maybe 100 yards ahead of me when the rally flag blew out of his pocket.

    I would have stopped for it, but would never have been able to catch those guys even if I'd been sure we were heading to the same bonus next. So I hit the brights and punched it, it took me a few minutes to catch up and wave him over.

    I was absolutely fucking sick to my stomach about it- maybe it wasn't me distracting them that made him lose the flag... but I have hereby resolved to keep my stupid yap shut from now on. I'd have rather lost my own.

    I proceeded down to my next stop, near Winchester. 522 through WV is a long tourist-filled slog. I could have probably saved a few minutes, I had opportunities to pass a few times, but I just wasn't feeling it. I talked to @Hawk actually for about 15 minutes or so :lol3

    Dinosaur Land



    Duct man in Front Royal (home of Dave's Ducts)



    I had time to add on an extra bonus, just 12 points but why not? Of course I didn't do a good job reading the rally book on my way, and couldn't find a good place to get the shot... until I pulled out the book and realized they wanted us to shoot from across the street.



    See that pic? See those bikes?

    Yup, the Lakotas :lol3
  17. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    I kept my yap shut and rolled out. From here it was just a few miles to the 4-lane of Route 17 which takes us all the way back to the barn, pretty much - it intersects I-95 3 miles north of Rally HQ.

    At a light about a mile short from 95 who pulls up? Daughter :lol3

    "did you find your dad's flag!?"

    "It was MINE!"

    :sick

    we rolled back and got our arrival times stamped. With about 15 minutes to spare I sat down to take a final look at my paperwork and seal the envelope. Lakota sat across from me. I immediately apologized, and he very graciously let me off the hook.

    turned my packet in, and ran into Daughter. I apologized to her too, and she also was very kind about the whole thing.

    I still feel like a turd.

    Anyway, the good news is that it only affected the standings a little bit. Instead of tying for the win, he was first and she was second.

    and behold, the fruits of my labor:

    ta daaa

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  18. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    I'm really proud of it. Not because I came in ahead of other people, but because I think I did pretty much everything I was able to do. Yes, I could have maybe picked up more points but I would have had to push it more, and I didn't feel up to making that trade-off. I DID see the winning route, which was cool - and I did a pretty good job of judging what I was capable of getting. To do better, I would have had to get better. It's not so much about beating other people, but about not beating myself.

    Another great thing about it is that I was able to get into that zone where nothing else gets any space in your head except the rally itself. I'd had a shit-filled and stressful week, all travel and 15 hour days, with one emergency after another popping up and no sleep. I briefly considered skipping the rally... but it was exactly what I needed

    best thing of all though is the people. from the minute you roll in you are surrounded by people who are there for the same reason you are and that common thread runs through everyone. Past riders and LD community members who couldn't manage to compete come by to volunteer to help out (thanks @RFlagg42 ), and anyone who needs help/parts/advice/assistance gets whatever the group has to offer without hesitation. The rallymasters are incredible, I can't imagine the amount of work and organizing that goes into this, not to mention being there with 60 or 70 riders out on the road at the same time. It's cool to be able to watch people go out of their way to give the new participants a hand. If you haven't done one of these and you're looking, this is a pretty good place to start
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  19. LadyDraco

    LadyDraco KillerSmileIHazIt !!

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    That is awesome Lance ! Congrats !! :thumb
  20. Boondoggle

    Boondoggle no good deed

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    Thanks!