Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Doin the Calaboogie to PA

Terry and I headed up to ride for 3 days at Calabogie Motorsports Park in Ontario with SSR. We woke up early on Sunday, watched the Moto2 and MotoGP races from Silverstone and then headed out on our trip.

our lil travel buddy
 We packed up the van and loaded the trailer the day before so we could get an early start. Our first stop was to IHOP for breakfast, then to the garage to pick up the trailer.  Before we headed north we stopped at a gas station to check the tire pressures on the trailer,  where I found this little guy, someone forgot their skull valve cap... so I brought him along with us.

We made our way north up I-81 to Alexandria Bay, NY  in the 1000 Islands region where we stayed for the evening at the touristy Capt. Thomson's Resort.  These were in view from our room's balcony:

Boldt Castle

That evening we learned that Martin, Irene and lil Lucas who were also on their way up to Calabogie were camping in Alexandria Bay and headed out the next morning as well, so we decided to hook up and head across the border in the morning together.

The next morning,  after breakfast we stopped at a go kart track in the area and Terry, Irene and I did 4 laps.  The karts were really slow.... oh well.   After that we decided to grab lunch at Subway and then head across the border and on to Calabogie.   Wow ... we though the karts were slow!  It was excruciating to watch 3 people behind the counter at Subway take so long...we NOT in NYC anymore.

 We make our way over the border with no delay and head to Calabogie following Martin and Irene.

Our view of  Canada looked like this:

yeah!  we made it

I wish I had grabbed my camera when we arrived.  There was still a Mustang Experience event going on,  where people can drive one of the track's Mustangs.   There was a helicopter that took off after it seemed that the event was over,  but the helicopter actually had a photographer that was taking a group photo of the drivers on the track.  These crazy mofos  landed the helicopter in the parking lot to let the photographer off right behind our trailer!!!  of course by the time I decide to run and grab my camera they took off again.  ugh!!!  I'm pissed I missed the opportunity to take that photo!  

The people running the logistics for the Mustang event had some HRC CBRs on display.  Of course I didn't take a photo of those either.... I'm slacking.  Terry spoke to the technician that set up the bikes for a little while and then we set up for dinner.   Cooked up some burgers and dogs with Martin and Irene and then called it a night.  I didn't sleep well as the guys from the logistics company stayed there the night and were up partying next to us until 2 am when their generator finally ran out of gas.

 The next morning we brought our bikes over for the sound test.  I like an idiot, burned my leg on my SV's exhaust.   I brought the SV along as the forecast had called for rain for 2 of the 3 days.   The bikes all "passed" the sound test.....    It was a SSR day (Show up, Shut up and Ride) by invite only.   Formed by a primarily Ducati- Loudon group of riders, it's similar to a DESMO day but better,  everyone knows and respects each other on track.  Lunch was catered all 3 days and the food was delish!  BBQ steak the first day, pork the second and chicken the last.   We ran 2 groups all 3 days alternating every 30 minutes, but you could run either group as it was self regulated so it was like an open track with reminders to come in to re-hydrate.  It was hot all 3 days but we lucked out and never got the thundershowers that were forecast.   There was a light rain the evening we first got there, and a heavy thunderstorm the evening we left.  We were also lucky to stay with in Martin & Irene's air-conditioned camper the 2nd and 3rd night we were there as it was way too hot to sleep in the van.   Without fail each night at after sundown the mosquitoes came out in full ATTACK mode!!!  It was crazy.   It was like how you see bats leaving their caves in the evening on TV,  they all came out at the exact same time and came at everyone, we had to run inside, it was war!  and we were losing.

After my very first session I came in and told Terry that this was my new favorite track and that we were coming back!!  The scenery is so beautiful with trees everywhere, making you feel like your riding on a back country road.  The track is wide and flowing.   There are critters around, I saw a two turtles and a woodchuck.  Martin and Terry saw a raccoon.  The corner marshals were the most professional bunch I've ever had the pleasure to ride with.   They use the debris flag when critters are spotted.    It does take a day to learn the track and which turns are coming up.  There are directional signs which clue you in to the turn coming up, the severity and the direction.  With out these signs everyone would be off roading for sure  and it would take too long to learn the track and have fun.  

Every evening after the day events, a team would bring this out for testing

the paddock..  you can see Terry

Martin and Lucas

Lucas keeping cool in his pool

like it wasn't hot enough!

Martin and Terry playing

Martin on his new toy


Terry pitting in

Michelle's last session of our last day on track

the Chickies of SSR Calabogie

already can't wait until next year!!!!!!!

The last evening we stayed at a local Bed and Breakfast, The Fans of Calabogie.    The place was very clean and we were the only ones staying there that evening and had the place to ourselves.   The hostess turned on our AC for our bedroom before we got there so it was such a relief when we walked in.   There was a heavy thunderstorm that evening and the crazy heat finally broke for the rest of our trip.

view from bridge back to US- Wellesley Island, Alexandria Bay, NY

From Calabogie we headed back to NY and then Pennsylvania.   I bought a Groupon last year for 5 laps with a U-Drive Baja Challenge Experience at Rausch Creek Off Road Park.

I'm sure we looked crazy rolling up to Rausch Creek towing these!

Rausch Creek Off-Road Park

Baja Challenge

We had an absolute BLAST driving this buggy on their closed course.  Terry got 3 laps to drive and I got 2 in.   I told him that I would drive slow..... I lied.   We made it without flipping the car, which one of the guys driving the other car accomplished.

What a great week!