MABDR/NEBDR in May w/ COVID-19

Discussion in 'Americas' started by AdamChandler, Apr 3, 2020.

  1. AdamChandler

    AdamChandler Ascending n00b Supporter

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    I'd like to actually pose this to the group at large. I have an odd work schedule where I have 12 interns at any given time but I have 2 breaks per year one is in May when from 5/1 - 5/18 I have no interns and another is in November from the 1st to just after thanksgiving. On may 18th, I get 12 interns and my summer riding season gets limited to just 3 day weekend getaways because of how much we have to get done in a short time in my program. I can't take summer vacations like many of you w/o sacrificing the team's output & success.

    So I applied for being off from work May 2nd - 16th as far back as January with the intention of doing the MA and NE BDRs at least up to my house in Lebanon NH which would put me around the 60% mark of the NEBDR and I'd probably not go any further north because a lot of the trails are muddy or closed still that time of year but I'd then finish up NEBDR at a random weekend in June.

    Given COVID-19, I was still planning on sticking to this plan but I'd camp the entire route instead of doing hotels, I'd pack my own food (bars & dehydrated) and sanitize my hands at gas stops. The next chance to do the BDR will not be until Spring 2021.

    I'm getting pushback obviously from friends and co-workers to not go and frankly they're being very aggressive with me about it but I'm not one of "those millennials" meaning I've been in my house since the first week of March and my state is locked down until June for non-essential activities so that's 3 months I'll be only leaving my house for dog walking & groceries and I'm on week 4 and haven't even gone grocery shopping yet thanks to my New England Hoarding of food & root cellar and food-saver preparation so as someone who has followed the rules for a month and my human contact has just been my girlfriend and our dog, and will continue to be my reality for 60 more days, I'd really like to still do my trip but aside from the social stigmas of doing it, what are the practical reasons?

    What I mean is what's legally limiting me from doing this trip? Are there states along the MABDR that will ticket or arrest me by doing this in May? Am I going to find myself unable to find Petrol or services? I know the risk of crashing and being hospitalized, that's not a legal limitation.

    I'm looking for honest responses to this trip planning w/o people laying on me the social stigmas which I'm well aware of, I'm looking for practical advice.

    To top it all off, I'm maxed out on paid time off so I'm forced to take every other Friday off so I stay under my maximum hours and that just means taking the day off but still being cooped indoors so MABDR in May was sort of something I was looking forward to and now that I'm seeing the social pushback I'm receiving despite going over and above on playing the rules so far, I'm guessing that this thread is not going to go well but I'm throwing it out anyway.

    With my 2 weeks off and unable to go south, I used to just roll up into the woods of Canada but I can't do that either and Maine/NH northern sections are all still covered in mud. I need to getaway and unplug from work for a week or two and a 2 week staycation in my 700 square foot house would make me insane...I'd just work anyway.
    #1
  2. naruse

    naruse Been here awhile

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    tbh, imho I support your friend's and co-workers. Do not go out. We are all in this together, no need to expose yourself and expose others.
    #2
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  3. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

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    The gas stations are not going to be closed, nor will the groceries stores... it's a decision you'll need to make...

    Since you're isolating yourself as much as anyone else who is staying at home ( but still goes out to shop, get gas and supplies).by virtual of riding alone and remote.

    Folks wont be able to answer whether you'll gonna be ticked for travel because its uncharted territories / new law in most areas.. but even with stay at home orders.. most wont stop you from going out and walking your dogs.. excercise..etc.. so if you are alone on the bike.. chances are you will be fine...

    If it was me, i would go... be there will be 7 out of 10 folks out there that will tell u not to.
    #3
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  4. chasbmw

    chasbmw Long timer

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    The stranger passing through small towns may not be welcome as you will seen as plague carrier.

    It also would not be a good time to have an accident.

    There is always next year.

    Charles
    #4
  5. Addapost

    Addapost Been here awhile

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    Yeah I'm with your friends and coworkers too. You are actually lucky to have the "problem" of too much work. How many new unemployment claims in the last two weeks? 10,000,000? I have the NEBDR planned for the middle of August. If this is still going on :( I am staying home.
    #5
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  6. Tall Man

    Tall Man Speak as you find.

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    Some of us can do so. At least one citation has been issued under the auspices of non-essential travel. How such discretionary decisions by LE might affect a through-traveler on, e.g., a paved portion of the MABDR remains to be seen. The risk is not zero.

    @AdamChandler
    I wish I could support your endeavor...however...every day is seemingly more serious than the day preceding it. I have to take the side of your friends and co-workers. Sorry, mate.
    #6
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  7. AwDang

    AwDang Enabler

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    As of today 3APR2020 in Virginia by VA EO 55
    “Recreation” is legal
    The GW&Jeff Forrest has closed all campgrounds and private campgrounds were closed under EO 53. It was made clear in a release by the NFS supervisor that Dispersed camping IS allowed in the NF.

    All of this is subject to change....the VA order doesn’t expire until 10JUN.....
    #7
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  8. PineyMountainRacing

    PineyMountainRacing Oops....

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    I was headed up to western NC last week, but with all the closures and road blocks it would have been a pain. I'm a NC property owner but my bikes all have FL tags. Jackson County NC imposed a 14 day quarantine for anyone arriving from another county, IDK how they would enforce it, but it wasn't worth the trouble to me. Like you, I was going to carry everything I needed, except fuel. FWIW the only gravel FS road I have ever come up on a LEO road block was 2 miles west of Damascus, VA (start MABDR) during RDV back when we had it at Hampton, TN. I've got 2 weeks off coming up in May, RDV has been cancelled and I hadn't even decided which direction to head afterwards, but if the CV situation hasn't cooled off I'll be still hanging around the house in FL unfortunately. But I'm planning to be healthy LOL.
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  9. AwDang

    AwDang Enabler

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    The road you’re describing is actually 3 county road connected by 2 FS road segments. It’s a frequent DUI check point as people try and skirt town. It also lies about 5mi from the waterfall.
    #9
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  10. AdamChandler

    AdamChandler Ascending n00b Supporter

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    You're on my list of people to PM a week before my departure date no matter what to see if you're even still able to be open for business. Thanks for chiming in here, I appreciate the information.
    #10
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  11. AwDang

    AwDang Enabler

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    We lucked out and are deemed “essential” who knew...... :)
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  12. AdamChandler

    AdamChandler Ascending n00b Supporter

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    Thanks everyone for keeping it civil. As a young guy, I know you guys could easily rail against me and blame me for everything young people do so I'm appreciative of the good dialogue so far!

    I think I'll put my odds of doing this trip at 50% and if the curve hasn't flattened and restrictions haven't leveled out, I'll cancel the trip. It's just the right thing to do and maybe stealth camp in northern Maine for a few days. I just need to get out and sleep under the stars and enjoy some good riding. I prefer new scenery but maybe anywhere will do at this point.

    If by May 4th, things are worse than they are today, not better that will decide the trip for me.
    #12
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  13. PineyMountainRacing

    PineyMountainRacing Oops....

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    I’m planning to retry the MABDR this summer or fall. Last Fall I got as far as Moorefield and then bailed and headed back to Florida to prepare for Dorian. I could have spent one more day on the BDR but then I was gonna have to slab it back to FL with a possible evacuation beginning. So I rode back to FL avoiding interstates and had a nice trip home. Dorian was a “nothing” for the left coast of Florida but you just never know. Maybe we’ll bump into each other this fall if your trip does get postponed :beer
    #13
  14. SourKraut

    SourKraut Long timer Supporter

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    The way things are changing daily with regards to travel restrictions and closures nobody knows the answer to your question even if it was next week. If I had to guess? A month from now we will look back at this question as a quaint reminder of the way we used to think.

    I was planning a four month 15k mile trip from May to September and at this point have scrapped it until next year.
    #14
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  15. boulet_boulet

    boulet_boulet Long timer

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    Possible helpful info: Maine ATV trails are all closed until 5/15 or 6/1, depending on location and specific terms with landowners. They generally open later the further north you go. Much of Northern Maine’s dirt roads are privately owned and prohibit bikes. You wouldn’t be doing us any favors if you ignored these rules—we already have enough PR problems between bikes and the big landowners.

    Also, Maine is currently closed for all non-essential travel and visitors are expected to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival. This order lasts until 4/30 but it may be renewed.

    Good luck with your deliberations.
    #15
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  16. Dualsport Chic

    Dualsport Chic Long timer

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    Adam - I know its crushing to so look forward to something and plan for it and then have reality come crashing down pressuring you to change 'the plan'. I know you subscribe to many moto related organizations and have shown a high interest in being part of the BDR community.

    Its as much about protecting residents in rural communities that BDR tracks pass through as riders protecting themselves if they are hurt far away from home, given potentially limited medical assistance/increased COVID-19 exposure for those needing emergency care, not to mention more pressure on an already strained medical system throughout our country. And, LEOs in the south will likely not be fond of northerners wandering through their lands at this time - making a BDR adventure a far less enjoyable experience than it should otherwise be. We all need to be ambassadors of this sport right now - as there will definitely be future opportunities to ride - patience is key.:

    On the surface, riding a BDR right now could be perceived as a great way to practice Social Distancing during this crisis. But in reality, BDRs connect riders from all over with the people who live in the small rural communities along the routes.

    The well-being of these communities, which are at the heart of our mission, are struggling at the moment to keep their own healthy, safe and cared for. Increased social exposure and potential strain on medical services could certainly make a negative impact.

    If you do choose to Ride BDR during this time, please do so responsibly and be mindful of how your actions can affect others. Also, be sure to check road status in National & State Forests, etc.

    When we are on the other side of this crisis, the small communities along BDRs will definitely need our support as they try to recover. Until then, it’s a perfect time for catching up on BDR documentary films available for download or streaming on Vimeo and Amazon.

    Please Ride Respectfully.
    #16
  17. Migolito

    Migolito Prognosticator and MotoYogi

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    So, I had planned to do the NVBDR, the IDBDR and the WABDR this June. Then ride back down the coast to SCal. I cancelled it. I have zero plans of doing anything otherthan staying at home, shopping at the grocery store, get gas occasionally and excercise in the hood. We have a tendency to justify the unjustifiable and rationalize the irrational. If we didn't there would have been no way we would have been able to walk on the moon or take a photo from atop Everest or run into a collapsing World Trade center. At the end of the day, we are a species of pure faith, not math. How we conduct ourselves today, will not only have dramatic consequences tommorow, but, will in a large part determine who we see in the mirror for the rest of our lives.
    #17
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  18. Dualsport Chic

    Dualsport Chic Long timer

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    Forgot to mention one important thing to consider riding the MABDR in the Spring - May is a time along the MABDR when young deer are out in abundance after their moms push them away due to giving birth to new fawns they need to care for. These youngsters are not smart and jump out in front of vehicles quite often. Our group of 5 had several close calls on the MABDR in 2018, and I unfortunately suffered a direct hit at 50 mph near Pembroke, VA when I came around the corner to find one bounding out of the bushes in front of me. My only choice was to hit the deer like a linebacker - which caused them to fall down/away from under my front wheel, which saved me from going down.
    #18
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  19. AwDang

    AwDang Enabler

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    Your assumptions are offensive
    #19
  20. t1hybrid

    t1hybrid The bike whisperer

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    As a doctor on the front lines of this pandemic I would have to say definitively keep your plans, just be ready to pull the plug if things get worse. You’ve already put more thought into it than the masses at Lowes and Costco getting all their home projects done. You can camp, get gas and groceries with minimal contact and road closures...you have knobbies right??? Thanks to our wonderful media everyone with a sniffle or cough is making a beeline for the ED which is the worst thing to be doing. Enjoy your ride and just remember instead of behaving like you’re trying to not catch the virus act like you have it and are not trying to spread it!
    #20