Friday, May 25, 2012

A Little More Detail On the Definition of Goat Trails

It's said that a picture is worth a thousand words, so how many is a video worth?  Here are some clips strung together of different goat trails to give you a better, a more experiential idea of what the term means.  These are a combination of roads in California and in the Alps.

As you can see, there's a lot going on when riding these roads; rough surfaces, tight turns, steep hills, cyclists, cars, trucks, sometimes livestock or wildlife.  Lots to keep a rider fully engaged and entertained!  Interestingly though, usually not at terribly high speeds.  No need for a liter bike to have fun.  Even a humble 650 twin will rarely get the throttle open more than halfway.   Additionally, while you do see some traffic on these roads, for the most part you won't see much, and what traffic you do encounter will usually be in your mirrors within moments.  Do you need more reasons?  How about scenery?  Some of the most beautiful views anywhere can be enjoyed from these remote and challenging roads.  

Downsides?  There are a few.  Oftentimes if something goes wrong you will be a long way from help, it may be along time until someone else comes along who can render assistance, and it's not unusual for cell coverage is spotty.  More?  Okay, locals frequently drive as though no one else is one the road because in their experience only rarely do they encounter other road users.  That can mean two pickup trucks stopped in the middle of the road for a chat, or it can mean one of those same pickup trucks rounding a blind corner fully on your side of the road.  How do you deal with that?  It means that you always have to ride as though there is something really scary coming around the next blind turn.  It's a rule to live by.   

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