Wednesday, August 8, 2012

ATV Class at Buffalo Run Campground

This morning the three of us took and passed the ATV class offered for free from the Idaho State Parks and Recreation Department.  We read a 35 page booklet ahead of time that has lots of pictures and diagrams, so it was not really 35 pages of text.  Totally easy read!

Blair met us there with her cool truck, cones, and boards set up in a course on one of the group campground sites at Buffalo Run Campground on highway 20.  We started with a multiple guess, true/false, written exam. "You can't miss more than 15", she informed us.  There were 40 - 45 questions.  Whew!  We all passed!  Then onto the riding part.

She explained what we were doing, demonstrated for us, and then watched as we each rode around the course doing the aforementioned skill.  The skills were things like braking with both hand and foot brakes, braking while standing, leaning into turns, weaving in and out of pylons, and finally going over 4" by 4" boards laid out to simulate things you would encounter on a trail that you need to go over.

She discussed obstacles and hazards of different terrains we might encounter (little did she know - we HAVE encountered).  (Anyone going on a ride led by Uncle Brian might agree... )  After she shared a couple of near death experiences she has had from making mistakes on the trail, we (Brian) told her of one near death experience we (I) had one time.  Some of you might remember riding up Beaver Creek area up Logan Canyon.  Then we each received our temporary 'I'm in the club' card.  Permanent ones are in the mail!

We found this to be a very beneficial class.  Brian and I agreed it would be a great class for the young teenagers as a preparatory exercise to beginning driving a car as well as for the intention, to make us all safer ATV riders.  Two things were 'AHAs' for me.  In the manual there is a wonderful list of all the things you need to have on the ATV for short rides and a different list for longer rides.  These were things most of which we don't have yet on our ATVs.  There was a list of things for a survival kit, which I think we will be putting together for each of our ATVs.  The second thing was that ATVs in Idaho cannot be louder than 96 decibels.  That was surprising to me because from my audiology class I seem to remember that anything over 90 decibels can cause pain and temporary hearing loss after as little as 15 minutes, and permanent hearing loss over time if exposed to that much noise on a regular basis, say 30 minutes/day for 5 days/week.  Maybe I should write the Idaho State Parks and Rec Department a letter....  Or maybe not.

Pretty girl!  Buff chick...
Overall, this is was a class and we would recommend it to everyone who rides.  
Thank you, Blair.  We had a great time.

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