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Last week I finished the WYBDR and WYBDRX with John and Jim from Emmaus MotoTours. My husband and I did a BDR together and I FINISHED (both of which were on my bucket list)! This was my first BDR, and as a 67-year-old woman with a group of all men, I began the journey with significant trepidation. John and Jim established an atmosphere that was supportive and encouraging without being patronizing, while also tactfully managing some of the challenges for women riders (like potty stops).
Wyoming was magnificent. The BDR was a great combination of every riding challenge you can imagine...mountains, deserts, mud, water, deep sand, rocky climbs. The challenge sections offered some more significant challenge for more expert riders (I did 2), but overall, the BDR was appropriately difficult without being impossible for an intermediate rider.
John did a great job of organizing, finding quaint and comfortable accommodations in remote locations, and keeping us all on schedule. He also did some helpful coaching (I asked him to) and each day I saw improvement in my riding.
Jim was invaluable as the sweep, doing the hard work of picking up bikes, giving realistic expectations and helpful coaching, and keeping us all amused by his humorous remarks. He also patiently put up with my slightly slower progress (since I was riding a smaller bike than the guys due to my size).
This really was a trip of a lifetime for me. I pushed limits, surmounted challenges that I wasn't sure I could at the beginning of the trip, and most importantly, had SOOO much fun! I highly recommend Emmaus MotoTours!
Thanks Peggy. I truly enjoyed having you along and watch your progress everyday. But more than your riding, your positive and never say quit attitude was a highlight for me. You made things so much easier and pleasant for everyone.
I just completed the PA Wilds BDR-X With John's team and had an absolute blast. This was my first time completing any of the BDR routes, and I couldn't have asked for a better group to have done it with. John and BDR ambassador Marc made it a fun, encouraging and safe environment to push my riding boundaries comfortably and in a responsible manner. I am already looking forward to completing the MABDR with John & team next summer.
Thanks so much Derek. One of the things I really enjoy on tours is getting to watch riders grow in their skill set and enjoyment of riding. I loved watching you make the 310 handle thru some tough sections. Looking forward to the MABDR.
Such a blast. This was my first foray into the BDR world as a relatively new rider (two years) with not much off-road experience outside of the MSF Adventure Rider course. The course itself is an excellent first multi day trip to do and all the people on the tour quickly became a crew and it made the experience so much richer. John put together an excellent tour and guided me and the other newer riders through the course. He gave tips as we approached various scenarios, which aligned with the training I’d taken and served as a prompt to keep the right technique top of mind and made me willing to try a couple of expert sessions with success. He also found the right balance between structure to keep the group moving and flexibility, so that everyone could have the experience they wanted for the trip. We were also lucky to have Marc, a BDR ambassador, on the trip. He had a good story and offered a lot of insight into the BDR world. Highly recommend and I will definitely be doing another tour with Emmaus.
Thanks Scott. Always good to have another T7 on the ride. 🙂
Proud to be apart of the North East BDR trip with a great group of people! Hats off to both John and Jim for leading a fantastic trip that was complimentary to every riders skill and comfort level! John would take the guys who wanted to do the expert sections and Jim would take the guys who opted out.The relaxed atmosphere makes it feel as if you aren’t on a tour rather out riding with friends. Huge thank you to John and Jim for putting on such a great trip that ran like a well oiled machine no matter how many obstacles we were faced with. I am truly grateful for the opportunity to ride with such cool dudes.
Thanks Caleb. It was so great getting the opportunity to do the tougher sections with you, Don and Chris. Amazing what you were able to accomplish with just a front break. Awe inspiring.
We laughed. We crashed. We cried. Had an absolute blast. Would absolutely recommend John and Jim as guides and this tour group. Had great accommodations set up. Very flexible in terms of changing weather conditions and riders experience and bike problems. Just laughed a ton on the trip. Adventure riding isn’t for everyone, and some days are stressful, but this is a great way to do a BDR and just focus on the rides, and let someone else worry about logistics.
Thanks Chris. Really glad you came along and also bringing Caleb. Diverse personalities but everyone just gelled so well. It was a pleasure from start to finish. Also loved getting to know "Large Marge". 🙂
I will definitely take another tour with Emmaus!
Sign up for a tour. Just do it! Too often we delay because we have so many questions; Do I want to camp? Do I want to go alone or with friends? When is the best time to go? Is my bike suitable? Just sign up for a tour with Emmaus MotoTours. With Emmaus you’ll get answers to those questions and more, gain experience; and have fun.
John and Jim do all the work - you can just ride. The planning and pace were perfect; from the pre-trip Zoom call to the post-trip farewell lunch everything is coordinated and well timed.
Thanks Jay. It was a pleasure to ride with you and hope we can do so again down the road. Good luck with all the real estate decisions. And thank you for your service.
This "John Ciribassi Special" was a hit out of the ballpark. Good food and lodging options, phenomenal countryside (there's nothing else like northcentral PA in October), and great routing through interesting and varying terrain. John and "Tail Gunner Jim" led a memory-packed jaunt with yet another great group of riders.
Incidentally, I loved this ride format. So nice having a steady "landing spot" after each day's riding.
Sign me up for next year's ride, John!
You are on the list Diane!!
The tour was fantastic, well thought out routes. Great scenery and lunch stops at local restaurants. John and Jim accomodated all riders of different skill levels so everyone could enjoy their trip. Great team evironment and the camaraderie was second only to the fantastic riding.
Thanks Mark. Loved having a fellow Midwesterner on the trip along with Cris. You both were great riders and even better with comic relief. Just wish we got a shot of the "Michelin Man". 🙂
I learned so much as a rider and absolutely feel far more confident offroad under John's instruction. Learned some previous ideas and faux pas about offroad ridding were completely wrong and was able to immediately put my new skills to the test. I would recommend this trip to anyone who wants to become more skilled offroad and to see the beautiful NE.
Thanks Tom. My goals for doing tours include having a rider become better skilled off road, enjoy the ride and want to continue adventure riding. Looks like all three boxes were checked with you. Very satisfying for me. Of course, most of your success was because you were riding the "right" bike. 🙂
This is what I had in mind when I purchased my Adventure bike. Something different than riding the pavement all the time. I am hooked. Rode away with a higher skill level and a lot more confidence to take on the next challenge.
I highly recommend Emmaus MotoTours.
Thanks Brian. It was so cool to see you hesitate at first to take on some of the tougher sections then to see the big smile on your face after completing them. I can definitely see you moving on to greater challenges on the big GS!
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