Another Season Nears an End... As Does a Life.
Another Season Nears an End...
And another life was taken too soon after a 16 year old rider allegedly collided with some trees after going off the shoulder of the trail this weekend.
I get that kids will be kids. And that we've all been there before. And we've all experienced being a little crazy and too "Evel Knievel" behind the throttle. But... we still have to realize this is a different day and age. There are some professional riders who do some serious tricks and jumps that influence younger riders that they could quite possibly do the same things, with a little bit (lot of bit) of practice. The younger generation is unfortunately, less patient and considerably more apt to try things than we as adults can be. I say "can be" because there are some adults out there that scare the bejesus out of me as well and have no patience or sense of reality.
Whether or not these kids were just going too fast, horsing around, or merely made a simple error in throttle versus turn time... It really doesn't matter. A young man who hadn't even graduated high school, or attended a prom, gotten to experience college, marriage, children, a full time career... None of that will be shared with his family or friends. His memory is the only thing that lives on through them now. And that is a sad, disappointing, upsetting reality.
No blame should be laid on anyone at this time. This message isn't about that. This is simply another message to EVERYONE to be safe. To ride with caution. To ride for the enjoyment and happiness that you even get to embellish in the sport and fun. There are moments when I've seen a lot of my friends act like they’re professional riders and can do serious tricks and can ride faster than this one or that one.
"My beast can outrun yours any day!" "How about now?" "Let's race then!"
Words that I hear non-stop. Which brand is faster? Which is better?
Come on people. Let's face it. If you have a sled to get out and ride on freely and happily, you’re already winning. You have a go-to, to enjoy an afternoon after work, or a weekend to explore. Don't screw it up by acting foolish and arrogant and trying to prove something. If you've been lucky enough to escape without injury up to this point, congratulations. Quit while you're ahead and just start enjoying the sport WISELY. No one is invincible!
There are times and places for races. If you want to race, enter one through your local club and show off when there are safety precautions in place and the right stretch of land is before you. Trails are not meant for racing, passing, showing off, and going crazy. Trails are for leisure riding and the enjoyment of long legged trips from point A to point B. Getting out and seeing the trees covered in snow, the ground sparkle with white diamonds in the sun, and the fresh, crisp air that makes you feel at ease and relaxed. That's the leisure aspect of trail riding. We shouldn't have to be afraid of the next corner and who might turn it too fast, or the next stretch and whoever may be too throttle happy attempting to pass you.
Being knowledgeable, experienced, and safe is way more sexy than trying to be an arrogant rider who inevitably will end up hurt... physically and/or pride-wise. Again... There are times and places for that type of riding. Let's leave that to the professionals and the semi-professionals.
So be a smart rider... Enjoy the last few weeks we have with this winter and stay alive, alert, and awesome!
Until next time...
... aaaand that's a braaaap!
Prayers go out to the family and friends of our young rider. May you RIP.