Maarat trail ride with Jaime Dempsey 03/03

A custom bike on the peak.

A custom bike on the peak.

As we head on leaving Mel, I noticed that Jaime was getting more and more confident riding the mud. She was slipping less, there are times wherein she didn’t even place her foot on the ground to maneuver. She was amazing to watch, given that this is her first time to ride trails.

Mel being the pro that he is caught up with us, he then started leading the group again, the riding order was Mel, Jaime, me then Spike. Having Mel on the front seemingly gave everyone a confidence boost, he was riding everything like it was nothing. We took the path that he took and did what he did, it’s sort of an assurance to were going to be safe if we follow his lead.

Then we came upon a corner that’s going down with a mild incline, it already has an obvious rut. On your left is a big chunk of soil, almost head high. Mel went down it, slowly and carefully and got through it without any problems, then it was Jaime’s turn. She was doing exactly what Mel did, then her right leg slipped. It was like watching it in slow motion, the first thing to hit the soil were her shoulders, then her hips. The bike fell on her pinning her right leg down to the soil, for a moment we were all stumped.

After realizing that she was having trouble getting back up, we all dismounted from our motorcycles. Mel got to her first, while me and Spike were having trouble walking because of the slippery mud. Mel then grabbed on the handle bars of Jaime’s bike and started to pick it up. During this time I was trying to recall if I brought my med-kit with me and the splint, I was already thinking of the worst.

When the bike was finally up, that’s when my all our hearts stopped for a moment, we saw her holding her leg. In my mind, I was deeply hoping that it wasn’t anything serious. Then Mel asked her if she was ok, she nodded and said “I’m Ok!”. We were all relieved to hear those words from her. We then asked why she was holding her leg, she said that she felt the exhaust heat from the bikes headers. Good thing it was thermal wrapped and her riding pants were really thick. If it wasn’t, then a burn would most likely to happen. We rested for a bit and waited for the others to catch up with us. I was looking at Jaime, wondering if the experience rattled her a bit. When I was able to see her face, the only thing that I saw was a genuine smile… and some mud.

I have watched Ride and Seek only twice and honestly, I’m not really into it. “Why?” You might ask… simply because I can’t relate to it. I can’t relate to people traveling on their motorcycle with a complete crew of photographers and videographers. The people that I follow on Youtube travel and document alone, those are the people that I can relate to. The raw unpolished, undirected videos are what inspires me to do the same.

When I first met her 2 years ago I already felt that she was capable of so much more than what is on her show. I actually think that she can do solo adventure riding and can deliver them in a really good quality manner. Riding with her proves that, she is much more bad-ass and much more adventurous that what is shown in her videos. I feel like she is the type of person who would take up any riding challenge even if it means there’s some danger involved. She is the kind of rider who would eat dirt because of a crash, smile while picking up the bike up, drink beer in front of a bonfire and tell her stories before sleeping on a hammock… and do it all over again the next day.

After resting and gaining our confidence back, we rode again. It was still raining hard, we thought that after that slippery corner everything would be way easier, but it wasn’t. The rest the ride back consisted of slippery uphill and puddles of mud that would pass for a minor river crossing. Even though it was tough, everyone was riding confidently and everyone was smiling and fooling around. We kept on teasing Roe and blaming him for our predicament, this would made the group laugh and made the ride even more enjoyable.

When we arrived at a concrete road we thought that it was done and we have finally finished our trail ride. That’s when everybody was smiling and Jaime go off her bike and started to say thank you to the group. She then gave each of us hugs, “Not a bad reward” I muttered. We were riding the pavement for 10 minutes then Mel stopped and pointed to a path that was covered with trees. He then said “That’s the short cut!” Jaime looked at me as if asking the question “I thought this was over?”. I just said “I guess its still not over!” Only to find out that the path was just really, really short and the other side was another concrete road.

It was all concrete from there on, we arrived at KRB extremely wet and muddy but with big smile on our faces. Rhine then came up to us, saying that he was extremely concerned. “If you weren’t here by sundown were all ready to go there and rescue you!”. We all just laughed and he said that we should stay around because he got us some dinner. After 10 minutes the rest of the group arrived, everyone was safe. There were minor issues with Pong’s bike that caused the delay but it was all good. We then exchanged stories over dinner, everybody was laughing and smiling as we recalled our mishaps and misadventures.

Then I just said to myself, “This is the best way to end the day” holding a beer in my hand and a spoonful of good food in the other, in the company of good people.

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