Friday the 13th Ride

Port Dover, Ontario holds a motorcycle rally each Friday the 13th. Though I’ve never been there, it’s become sort of a tradition with me to go for a ride on these occasions as long as the weather is somewhat civilized.

This past Friday the temperature got to a balmy 5 degrees C (41 F) with overcast skies and a brisk wind off the water…nothing that merino wool and an electric vest couldn’t handle. We bundled up, grabbed a couple of take-out subs and headed for a nearby trail.

I immediately noticed the difference in soil consistency. A few cold nights had made the mud super slick and clumpy, filling the tire treads and flicking up on the fenders, engine and seat. I had to ride even slower than I normally would, and be really careful on off-camber sections of trail.


Just a little bit muddy.

An abandoned pallet made a great place to stop and have lunch – much more appealing to my brain than the cramped, crowded sub shop we had just left. We bring the campstove on just about every off-road ride, especially on chilly days. There’s something so comforting about a hot cup of coffee in the woods!


Trailside lunch

After we were warmed up a bit we continued along…slowly…and came to a very large puddle. With ice. ICE. I didn’t think it had been cold enough for ice yet! Water crossings still freak me out a little, and I usually go through water with both legs out like the stabilizers on a longliner, usually getting my feet soaked in the process. I knew that the water would be frigid and that I would be in for a brutally cold ride home if I got my feet wet here, but I somehow came through the puddle completely dry. Woohoo!


Mark is on the other side, giving me directions of the best line to take through the water.

The rest of the afternoon was spent riding around Portugal Cove, getting strange looks from other drivers. I don’t blame them. If you don’t ride, you don’t understand. This time of the year, every nice day could be our last before winter descends upon us. It brings special meaning to the phrase “carpe diem”.

Our Friday the 13th ride was at the absolute other end of the spectrum from what was happening in Port Dover, but the one thing we have in common is the passion for riding that pushes us out of our warm houses into the bite of mid-November. The next Friday the 13th is May 2016, lots of time to plan a great ride in (hopefully!) warmer weather.


Photo credit: motorbike_mark_ on Instagram.


Posted on November 15, 2015, in Roads of Newfoundland and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. How does the TW200 handle the deep mud?

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