Saturday morning up in Moon country

Despite a reasonable night’s sleep I’m having trouble getting my act together but by start time I seem to be all there. Today is another Cub day, testing of the new pegs and hopefully a day without leaks!

The Trialsmasters have laid out 5 sections up on the “Moon ” portion of Turkey Rock and as it gets hotter than hell up there we are starting early and riding Sections 1-5 three times, then coming down for lunch and out again for sections 6-10 of the loops that will give us the daily 30.

Section 1 is a simple enough affair and features a steep uphill. Slow start over some bedrock then a full squirt up the steep part then roll off and idle up to the ends. Getting back down a narrow gorge wasn’t included but would have made a  good section great.

Section 2 has a wander around the edge of moon scape, staying away from the rollers, to pick up a variety of lines to cross over the bump, then left turn and pick up the line to the exit.


A wander with Ed, Section 2


Round the base and up the side


Down the other side


Peter about to go left and along the bedrock

Over on the far side 3 is fairly straight forward, in past a tree into left descending turn then cross roots and swing right uphill into full 180 left turn. Watch for rollers and debris to the exit.

Gentle meander through grass and bushes to line up for the climb of 4.  Stay to the right for a precise 90 left at the top over a gnarly outcrop which always takes a mark or two if you are not spot on line.

Another great descent to 5 but not included in the section. Section 5 has a few direction cards for us so take care not to get too close. A good start with 5 cleans in the bag so off we go again and a few mental notes. Take care with the power on the hill climb of 1. Slow and steady on 2. Hit the root on the 90 in 3 and position for a wide turn. Take a slow ride through the grass in 4 and remember the top turn is critical. Look at 5 for rolled in debris.


John shows a good line as I score


Simple clean

5 more cleans for the second loop and no problem moments. Cub seems to be going well both in engine performance and handling.

Temperature on the rise but not excessive so out for loop 3. See a few dabs on 1 and Ed has a nasty when it suddenly grips and flicks him off the back. A few more get lost on the tricky top turn of 4 but the Cub sails round and records 15 good cleans for the morning.


Section 5 for the last time of the morning


Enjoyed that!

Suitably refreshed and hydrated, along with a ciggy or two as its a non smoking outside day due to fire hazards. Our group is off to Section 6 which ED set yesterday. Down by the far gate we are on a left tape runabout taking us up the far side of the big rock and gulley which we have seen many times before. We need a brush cutter in here to see what we are riding over! The trials boot is good for many things and under the brush its all rock crumbles through a tight right left complex before gaining the upper plateau and setting up for a downhill adverse through the gate. Some people are getting in a real mess with 3’s and 5’s but with the right power and the reset Rockshocks the Cub finds grip for a pleasing clean.

The loop takes us to another old “tested & true” and today its downhill on a lower ledge and turn wherever you wish to come up and around behind the start with a series of steps to a sharp left turn and run to the finish.

The loop gives a pleasant workout en-route to 8 which is exactly the same as it was a few years back as the 2 line. Start in some rubble and then left between two giant boulders, flick right and up the right again on bedrock and set up for the final left turn around a tree. John gets a bit wild near the exit and bounces off two rocks but gets the front wheel through for the clean.

The long downhill portion of the loop is fun and cooling and leads us to 9 which is multiple choice with 3 obvious lines. Ed tries the high line and stalls, John takes the medium and loses control while Mike Becker and I take the lower for cleans.

Back at the start Section 10 is on a higher ledge and should be a simple follow the path, avoid the debris piles and rollers, uphill then concentrate for the downhill to the exit.

5 more cleans for me and only 10 left to do. Drinks and smokes but when we come to go out again, the heat, old age, and other factors have Ed, John and Peter saying they are done! Mike can hardly believe his good fortune and is assured of the win if he can just get through the last 10.

We do the last two loops of 6-10 with Mike losing about 8 for each circuit while I clean ALL 30 sections for the ZERO card.






That time of the year again and Brenda’s birthday looms on the distant horizon! There seems to be much talk of boating, and indeed it is in her genes as they say.

Brenda grew up in a boating family and they spent a large portion of their time out on the lakes of New York state. Her father, was and is, a perfectionist carpenter by trade and her brother Rick followed family traditions restoring many a boat and vintage car. I saw a beautiful Chriscraft boat that they were rebuilding on my first visit to NY.

While we were in Phoenix in the days of “money no object” Brenda bought herself a gorgeous boat and had it moored at Lake Pleasant but sadly it never got used as much as it should and with berth fees and other desires it was traded in against the current Cadillac Esc, so it’s memory lives on!

During one of her visits to our local fresh produce shop on the way into town Brenda sees a boat for sale on the same lot. I glance at it on my way to work and it looks like it might be worth a look. Further investigating reveals the engine is non standard and doesn’t run, the seats have been recovered badly, and the current owner has no title to either the boat or the trailer?

More research into other boats is done via Craig’s list but nothing meets her criteria for her next project. Of course with my 160 miles a day of school bus driving I see many roadside offers on all manner of things and now the radar detects a similar vessel on Highway 491. Leaving no stone unturned she comes out for a quick look on the Tuesday that we are both in town. She quite likes it! Details are taken, more research completed, and the owner contacted. Seems it runs, its been out on the water recently and the owner works in a shop behind where it is sitting, and the owner has titles to everything!

Being a non boater person, although I did own one in AZ, I stop after my afternoon run on Wednesday to check ball hitch size and ease of access to get it out. Another boat has also been parked along side in the shape of an ocean going cruiser and for some reason this reminds me of the old childhood books of Thomas the Tank Engine and the big express loco Gordon.



Still thinking kiddies books I can vaguely remember ” Scruffy the Tugboat” and flash that up on Google only to find that the little red boat was actually called “Scuffy the Tugboat”, however in this case, the boat will here and forever after be called Scruffy!


Brenda looks over Scruffy with Gordon the Gin Palace right behind

Thursday and armed with new marine battery and the correct size hitch we arrive and haul the boat, Scruffy, away from Gordon the floating Gin Palace to a water source to hear the motor run.


“Scruffy” backing up for the hose game


The mighty Mercury fires up, water everywhere and Brenda is impressed.

Negotiations begin and Scruffy’s fate is decided after some $ talk which I understand is the language of the “Boat People”.

Scruffy is towed home but with a full RV park he has to go out front and wait for Brenda to come back from her LA visit.  Well many locals have seen Scruffy and some even know the make, have restorer friends,  and of course are full of advice.

Now all the fun of playing with her birthday present begins so watch this space for more riveting nautical and pirate yarns as Scruffy begins her transformation from ugly duckling to graceful swan.


TONY DOWN  …… in dry dock