Canada’s KTM Adventure Rally is back for its third year, and now riders will have two days of riding on KTM’s pre-scouted routes, as well as rider training from Chris Birch.
This year, the main part of the rally runs September 26-28 out of the Red Mountain Resort in Rossland, BC. Show up early, and you can take part in KTM demo rides on the 25th, or take in rider training with Chris Birch starting as early as the 23rd. Thursday the 26th is for registration, with riding on the 27th and 28th. It all ends with a final awards dinner on the 28th.
The rally is open to all brands of motorcycles; bikes must be street-legal and over 600 cc (sorry, DRZ400 guys). Only KTM-mounted riders will be allowed to participate in the Ultimate Qualifier, which also runs during the rally weekend. The winners of the Ultimate Qualifier event will earn entry into KTM’s Ultimate Race, and get the chance to live the life of a factory rider during a rally raid event (last year, they did the Merzouga rally).
This year, there’s an R1 route that’s intended to be more difficult. KTM says it’s “ADV bike friendly. (achievable on a KTM 1290 Super ADVENTURE R or similar model),” but also recommends knobby off-road tires. Expect single track, river crossings, mud, rocks, logs and tough hillclimbs. KTM figures the R1 class will be about 500 km long over the two days.
Then there’s the easier R2 route, which runs along double track trails, gravel and paved routes (no more than 30 per cent paved, though). KTM still recommends knobby tires for this route, so don’t expect it to be an absolute breeze. The R2 route should be about 700 km long, spread out over two days.
Last year, there was also a S route, which easier than R2 but also longer. That’s not returning for 2019.
KTM wants riders to participate on the routes in teams of two to four riders. As before, the route requires GPS navigation, so you’ve got to know how to follow a map on-screen (you can use your cellphone for navigation if you don’t own a GPS). You want to be in good shape if you’re going to ride this event, and able to patch a tire and generally take care of yourself out on the trails.
Registration closes on September 1, so you’ve got about a month left to sign up. Cost to attend is $425 CAD plus tax, including five meals but not including your accommodations. KTM has lined up accommodation options for different budgets, and was also working on lining up a discount with Air Canada for those flying into the event. For those participating in the Ultimate Qualifier event, your entry fee is included when you register for the R1 route. For more details, visit the rally’s Eventbrite page.