Friday, 2 January 2009

Husky WR 250 Ride 2

Day One of the Power Adventures Possum Trapper Maramarua trail ride (Jan 3 2009)

Day one of the Possum Trapper trail ride quickly brought home to me just how different the old GasGas and the new WR are. The GasGas, no doubt belying it's trials bike origins would happily negotiate with some aplomb anything that got in it's way. Point it in the general direction of attack and with a gentle tweak of the throttle it would gently wend it's way up the most gnarly,snotty hill without too much effort. I always had the feeling that there was always a little more power if required for that last sharp steep stretch before chugging over the top.

The WR requires a lot more attention to detail, feathering the clutch on the big snotty up hills to stop the front wheel coming back past the vertical and throwing the rider off when it hooked it. And hook up it did.

The mostly clay based trails in the Maramarua forest should be dry and dusty at this time of the year - it is almost the middle of summer after all. To be honest the tracks were not too bad on our first circuit. They quickly got harder to negotiate once it started to rain. Harder but not impassible, certainly a little daunting for those unused to the conditions or without decent tyres. One of the biggest problems for those with a little confidence like myself was people in the way stuck halfway up hills that had to be negotiated on the blast to the top.

The WR is not content with the more or .less smooth and gentle approach. The pilot needs to suck in a big one and attack. The approach seems to work well. I can't confess to have got up all the nastier hills first time but they all succumbed on on the second go. I just need to get fitter so I can hang onto the bike.

I didn't manage to get any video of the ride, it was just to wet to bother. Mind you the helmet cam would have worked ok on the head or bike of one of the faster riders circulating on the day. The kind of rider that ends the day with a more or less clean bike-nothing like mud encrusted steed that mine was at days end.

The Power Adventures rides are generally pretty rider friendly but with clearly marked more challenging expert sections. I don't know for sure but I assume that Greg sets these rides so that those with lesser ability don't get overwhelmed. Today the weather gods conspired against him to some extent.

I know some people would have found the ride a bit too demanding and would question whether some of the tracks should have been closed or more diversions put in place around the sections that became harder as the day went. But for a large number of riders, those fit enough and with the confidence and technique to blast up wet snotty clay cliffs it was all good clean fun.

Like the good old days.

Not that I am soft or anything-we didn't get to day 2.

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