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Frazier Mountain with the Ventura Boys

On the way to the Klim Adventure Summit in Idaho last month (more on that soon), Jayson Plummer and I ran into a group that he rides with out of Ventura County. Cameron Marshall (a.k.a. Nuclear Jesus) of BMWVC organizes a 'Gear Up & Ride' weekend about once a month. The first time I met Cam, Plums and I just happened to cross paths with him on day-1 of our 2-week trip. This time, I was voluntarily subjecting myself to the likes of this motley crew.

Saturday morning I packed up a few things and rode out to meet Cam and Steve, both of whom ride R1200GS Adventure's. We picked up Pat on the side of the road on his KTM 990SMT and found Rick at a gas station on his R1200GS. Beagle met us at the market at the bottom of the mountain somewhere around Frazier Park in his CJ7. Poor Beagle had a bum knee so he got to pilot the giant ice chest on wheels.

Pat and I swapped bikes so I got to try out the Big Orange Supermoto. That 990 engine is nice and smooth. It revved up so fast I was hitting the rev limiter without even meaning to. I thought I would hit the throttle and the front wheel would fly up in the air, but it wasn't all smoking wheels shooting flames as I had expected. Overall, the bike felt like it would handle best while being ridden aggressively, which is a good thing riding with sportbikes, but not today. In corners it wanted to drop much further than the modest lean angles I could afford within the group. Brakes were good. The throttle felt a little twitchy but this is compared to my little ADV-Touring machine so no official complaints about the 990SMT. Just a different bike all together. I could see having a lot of fun on it in a different setting.

All-in-all, the riding/camping trip was a good overnighter. Everyone got to relax, shoot Beagle's .22, and just hang out. It was dead silent up there that night. No insect noises or vehicles or anything. I think I'm addicted to the ride and camp experience. I've been on plenty of riding trips, but ever since my Grand Canyon trip earlier in the year it seems like I'm sleeping in the dirt almost every weekend now. So be it.

Another good weekend guys. See ya next time.

By Aram

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