Chutney spent a day out in the peak district with Gary from Adventure Bike warehouse getting muddy and wet, doing their off-road training day on a honda CRF250L. Here's how he got on...
"The day started in a little village buried deep in the heart of the peak district. Gary met us with a brew and a very warm welcome. He is a true biker through and through, competing in off road competitions all over the world and frequently out training in the most technical environments. He has recently returned from competing in the Dakar 2020 so really knows his stuff!
Firstly, we got talked through the bikes we’d be riding – Honda CRF250L’s. These bikes are brilliant for green lanes because they are lightweight but pack enough power to give you a buzz thrashing them ruts. They are fully kitted out for the job. Gary then explained the importance of safety throughout the day and how to ride safe in a group.
We then got kitted up and headed out, ready for action. I was apprehensive because I haven’t done much off-road riding. We set off and Gary allowed us time to get used to the bikes before we got off-road, which was good. I took to the bike straight away and felt comfortable on it. It was very different to my KTM 1290 superduke R and ofcourse my baby work scooter!
We arrived at the opening to a wide green lane and the adventure began. Gary talked us through how to pick the bike up when we’ve dropped it – an essential. It sounds easy but when you’re in some awkward positions which off-roading seems to put you in, it can be extremely difficult to lift a 150kg bike! This was really interesting because it's all about conserving energy and not panicking. We moved onto emergency stops. This was tricky because Gary purposely picked loose gravel to practice this on which was scary! Gary explained everything brilliantly, not just showing us how to do the task but the reasons why you would do it that way which helps you really understand and apply what he’s saying.
After completing lots of instructed tasks, we moved onto riding some proper green lanes using the techniques that Gary had shown us earlier. We advanced to looking at how to ride smoothly, using engine braking, not using the rear brake and observation. I had a little tumble doing a U-turn at about 0.3mph which proved to me how hard slow speed control in this environment. But everything progressed nicely and we continued to build on our previous training from the morning.
We then had Lunch at the Yonderman’s Café at Wardlow and a good chat about everything bike related. After lunch we spent all afternoon exploring the peaks on some of the best green lanes in Britain. We got absolutely soaked and muddy and the views were amazing. Gary let us just get on with it rather than stop-starting us. I really felt everything coming together and could put all the techniques we used into practice. Overall, the day was fantastic and really enecouraged me to do more off-road riding. It's really boosted my confidence on road aswell." - Chutney :)
We highly recommend this off-road training for anyone wanting to learn about off-road training or to advance their road riding. It’s a brilliant day out on the bike that you won’t forget.
The course covers:
- Body positioning
- Observation Skills
- Braking exercises
- Cornering at speed
- Hill starts – Upwards and downwards
- Dealing with ruts
- Low speed manoeuvring
- Picking the bike up