Trailriding with Stevie Ray, Ellis and Rick, 2/2/03

By Tom Niemela

(click on thumbnails for larger picture)

Stevie Ray and I had plans on going riding out at Hood River with our bud Rocket Rick on Sunday.  The night before was the Annual OMRA Awards Banquet and also I invited Ellis to go with us.  As usual, the banquet was a ton of fun and ended up being a late evening and Stevie Ray was at my shack at too-early thirty on Sunday morning.  We loaded up, hit the mandatory coffee stop and met up with Ellis.  Ellis was all loaded and ready to go with his pet Doberman, "Spencer" and his new KTM 450EXC.  

The drive out was cloudy, dark and filled with rain, however, it's usually nice on the other side of the mountains.  Upon arriving (don't ask where, or we'd have to kill you.  Let's just say that this year's Black Dog 'A' course will be using it), we noticed the dark clouds were still present even on that side, but the sun was trying to peek through.  Rick joined us as we got ready and Spencer chased sticks.  After getting suited up, Rick described the new trail that he and Joe had been working on for quite awhile and off we went.  Man, this was fun, tight, technical and slick!  No mud puddles, but is was certainly gooey.  After an hour or so of railing I wanted to adjust my suspenders on the YZF and we went back to the trucks. That's about the time "Trailblazer" Joe showed up with his snippers to do some more trail clearing. Joe is incredible - he's 82 years old and still rides.  His favorite pastime is trail clearing. He's the best.  Some others had showed up on quads and they had an 8-year old boy on his first ever quad ride.  The kid was doing figure eights in the parking area, which just happened to go through a mud puddle.  How happy can that be for an 8-year old?!  

Off we went for more riding on some existing trails and then the camera came out.  Plenty of jump shots, one of Ellis augering into the bushes after miscalculating a jump, Rick getting stuck, and lots of fun. When we got done at the end of the day, Ellis needed to give Spencer some exercise, so chased him around the parking lot (that the kid was STILL doing the same figure eight!).  Spencer got the last laugh when he suckered Ellis into a huge brush pile. All in all a super day, and thanks heaps, Rick and Joe, for allowing us to come roost at your place!

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Rick stuck good, while trying to make a water runoff for the trail. 
Feb 2 2003
11:19:26 am
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Feb 2 2003
11:19:47 am
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Still stuck and needing some help. 
Feb 2 2003
11:20:55 am
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"Trailblazer Joe!"
Feb 2 2003
1:48:38 pm
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Ellis styling for the camera. 
Feb 2 2003
2:03:40 pm
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Stevie Ray doing the same. 
Feb 2 2003
2:04:26 pm
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Rocket Rick. 
Feb 2 2003
2:05:02 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:05:15 pm
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Ellis getting out of shape over a jump.... 
Feb 2 2003
2:05:43 pm
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Ellis afterwards. 
Feb 2 2003
2:05:50 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:06:35 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:06:50 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:07:12 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:07:23 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:07:33 pm
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All together now!  
Feb 2 2003
2:18:36 pm
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Ellis' Katoom momentarily overheating while doing photos. 
Feb 2 2003
2:22:23 pm
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Rocket Rick! 
Feb 2 2003
2:27:15 pm
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Stevie Ray just before he bailed into the bushes!

Feb 2 2003
2:39:39 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:45:29 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:45:42 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:46:09 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:46:22 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:46:34 pm
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Feb 2 2003
2:47:03 pm
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Spencer getting some exercise. 
Feb 2 2003
2:53:25 pm
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A kid and a mud hole. 
Feb 2 2003
3:02:03 pm