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Our Summer Vacation in the Mountains

One of the things I love about our little sport is the relationships I have with my fellow riders. These relationships produce some incredible experiences. Last weekend my relationship with Martin Belair and Bill Hanson provided me with the most challenging and rewarding weekend I have ever had. Bill and I rode the 2015 Rocky Mountain Trials Association's Ute Cup Trial. Martin and USMontesa/Honda provided us with team and technical support and loads of encouragement. The Ute Cup has been ridden for over thirty years. It is formatted in the Scott trial format. There is only one line in the section. Everybody rides the same line. From the Nation’s best all the way down to me, we ride the same line. The loop is over 20 miles long with 20 sections along the way. Ridden twice. That is 40 miles and 40 sections. Its a two day event. So you can do it all again on Sunday. Different loop on Sunday. Same deal 20 miles and 20 sections except this day you ride the loop in one direction then ride it in the opposite direction and ride the sections in reverse (backwards) from the first loop. 40 discreet sections ridden once only. The staging area this year was at 11,000 feet of elevation and the event climbed from there to over 12,000 feet. The weather changes hourly. We had heat. cold, hail, and lots of rain. We were on the bikes from 9 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon. We carried lunch, fuel, parts and tools. The event is limited to 100 riders. There were only 71 finishers. I am quite proud to say we finished. 

The scenery is beyond stunning. The terrain is a magical combination of rocks and bigger rocks in the trees with some very nice dirt in between. Unless its wet, then its quite slippery and difficult. On Saturday, among other things we had the joy of three, two mile long 2nd gear climbs between sections. Sort of like a two mile long Intermediate section with roots and steps every ten yards. Then ride a section and repeat the climb. Ride a section and repeat. Amazing! This event requires you to manage everything. You have to mind your time, energy, hydration, nutrition, fuel, and the mechanical state of your motorcycle. I could go on and on. My friend Bill Hanson has never ridden better and had solid rides both days. I struggled with newbie nerves and a case of the “yips” (or head in butt if you prefer). The overall level of riding is very high. Riders from all over the nation attend including most of the National Pro class. Team Montesa’s Max Nelson finished fourth with 4 points. Yes, four points! 76 cleans! That is an entire universe away from my 105 points and 25 cleans. Bill smoked me with his very disciplined ride to 87 points. I had so much fun riding this event with my friend Mr. Hanson including the herculean four mile,. 4th gear dogfight uphill to Sunday’s section 38. What a ride. Plans are already in the works to ride the Ute Cup next year. Make plans now to come with us!



Summertime, and the living is easy..

Wow, did YOU ride this weekend? A bunch of the Santa Rosa faithful were definitely at it this weekend, braving the sweltering heat, and hitting some tire-melting slabs of quartz, all in the name of, well, riding.

The season starts soon. Trials party in the Piutes, just around the corner. and these boys will be ready to rumble, especially if it gets hot.

Below, Steve hitting section 4 of the Oswald 14, and looking pretty good at it to boot.

By the way, as in all trials photos, this is WAY harder than it looks.


Piute Mountain History

OK. Refer to the black and white image below. It's way more than twisted metal. Actually, Paul has this to offer about this spectacular site up high and very remote:
For those who have not been to the Piutes, there is a spectacular single track route to an airplane crash site. The aircraft is a US Air Force F105. The photo shows the remains of the engine and afterburner. The ride there is amazing and the crash site is fascinating. A "must" ride if there ever was.
Captain O

I've been there. The ride, and the preserved jet site is just not to be missed. You like singletrack, yes?


Piutes Party.

Watch this space, amigo. The Piutes fun is just 3 weeks out. Lots of (non-sanctioned, privately enjoyed, fun await.All this, and a cold drink to boot!

If you're going to crash somewhere, might as well be at the Piutes!


Screw it, let's ride!

Hi all. Long hot summer just passed me by. Guess I better get out there, and well, ride. Have y'all been reading TALK TRIALS? Well, you should. There's some great riding ahead, just gotta look for it.

Did somebody say ... Piutes? Hmm, I'm in. Meanwhile, it's off to Santa Rosa, and on a Saturday no less. Strange times indeed.Siri advises me to go here. Now.


Trials now.

My man, Paul, poster boy for keeping it real, all Summer long.Wow! All of July just passed like a train, and there sits the poor little website, on a seemingly endless summer break. But NO! Fret not. I'm (the so-called web guy) back. Deadlines met, clients happy, and all that. So thank you to everyone for hanging in there.

Now lets get down to bizness! The season is starting soon, yes?

Yes indeed. September 27, we kick off the 2015-2016 season right, with the Plonker's hosting the opening round at Cougar Buttes. And that's not all. If you've been poking around this here site, you may have read about a secret fun trial, up high in the Piutes, the weekend of September 5. Check it out and if it meet's your idea of fun, then by all means, get on up there. It's a CharliE thing!


The All-New New Season!

What's that? We have calendars for the 2015-2016 competition season? Dang, I'd say that is pretty cool. So mark your calendars, request those days away for extendo-camping, and we'll be looking for YOU at all the fine trials of the coming season. Big shout out to the SCTA Board and outgoing President Chris Cullins for getting this all squared away so swiftly. (Frankly, I'm the slow poke around here!).


Without further ado, here ya go.

But download the PDF, my friend. And then RIDE.


A word from the Captain

Sometimes you just might miss this, so I am passing along Paul Oswald's much more eloquent words.



Hi Friends,

Tori Carillo and Jake Malmquist. The Stone Trophy and the Markham Trophy. Every name on those two trophies is a formidable reminder of the work and dedication it takes to keep trials going forward, or be successful as a young competitor. Tori and Skyler Corrillo, and the unpictured Joseph. Yeah team!Thank you Tori for all the selfless work and great lunches. Your Youth Trials are just pure magic and important to our sport.

Jake, take a look at that trophy. The names on it are all special. Your name is now on there too. Honor that special notice you have been given by working hard to improve, and be the great example of a young rider on his way to the top, that I know you will be. Congratulations to you. (Dad too!)

No one will ever know (except me and Sarah) how hard Chris Cullins has worked to keep our trials world alive and healthy. Every event, every stake and ribbon, every meeting, literally everyday and every month of the year our president is banging away at making sure things go smoothly on the SoCal trial world. It is a labor of love, it is daunting. Chris, thank you one thousand times! You have done a super job with our organization.

See you all next season!

Paul Oswald