THE BAKER’S DOZEN
THE BAKER’S DOZEN
I had always wanted one, never had one, the RAF wouldn’t let us ride them, but one day I knew
I would have one! The Mighty KTM! Having seen these beauties at Enduros and ISDT’s I just had
to have one. Only ever saw one KTM in trials spec in the hands of Walther Luft, but there again if
you are the Austrian Champion, and a Puch rider it comes as no surprize that you would ride
“The Baker’s Dozen”.
Why a Baker’s Dozen ? well what would you call it ? The owner was a motorcycle nut who owned
a bakery right outside the Austrian Puch factory gates. He was bike mad and decided he wanted
to make the best off road bike ever. He would source parts from all over the world and then get
others to design it almost regardless of cost. The first ones had British Reynolds 531 tubing for the
frame, front forks from Italy, rear shocks from the UK (that didn’t last long!) rims from Japan and
all controls by Magura. All good choices so far but what about a motor ? As all the Puch engineers
came to his coffee shop/bakery for their morning Danish it was really no surprize when the first
engines appeared with KTM badges where the familiar green of Puch had been.
I suppose we may as well throw in a few other bike names and what they mean
Yamaha Piano/Organ Manufacturers
Kawasaki Ship builders
BSA Gun makers Birmingham Small Arms
Royal Enfield BIG gun makers
SWM Speedy World Motorcycles (yuk!)
So my first one is more a dual sport than enduro and is the LC400. It goes well and handles
nicely for a big heavy bike. In discussion over the lunch break at a local Central Arizona trials
event Jim persuades us to go for a ride in the Bradshaws taking in Cleator and eventually Crown
We arrive at Jim’s place and when all that are coming arrive, 5 of us set out into the unknown
with Jim leading. Cross country from the 101 loop at 51 ave we claw our way through various
stretches of boondocks and arrive at the “Roadrunner” in New River for breakfast.
A Mine somewhere ?
Off we go again Jim, leading with Rich Palmer, Smack and A.N.Other (can’t remember his name)
and yours truly dutifully following. Up trails various to mines of varying safety levels and through
areas that would have made great one day sections. Very soon we are all running out of fuel so
we beat feet back to Rock Springs and just make it amid some wildarsed Harley riders doing
wheelies with passengers! Hey I thought we were the Wheelie Boys?
Refuel and off to other mines Jim says he knows, the riding is great, lots of narrow rocky trails,
river crossings and a fair bit of washsand riding with some tank slappers thrown in.
Hey where’s the Drink?
Lunch somewhere in the middle of nowhere and now our “cool” liquid is running out so time for
some WFO on the dirt track to Cleator (population 7) and some refreshing beverages and the final
ascent to Crown King. The refreshing beverages prove to good and it’s now getting late and
Crown King has slipped over the horizon during the story telling.
Yet Another River
Time to go, so Jim leads us off on a “short cut” he knows that will take us back to Black Canyon
City. Through scrub, rock and more rivers, I never knew existed, the famous 5 crash their way
until it is getting ridiculous and dark!
Getting Dark in the Bradshaws
I elect to leave the main party and make my way off the mountain to the relative safety of I 17
on a Sunday night.
The team make it into Black Canyon and rumor has it they left there in the early hours and finally
back to Jim’s by daybreak…… something to do with slow service at the restaurant apparently!!
Tony Down Another Misadventure