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RawHyde Adventures Intro to Adventure Class Photo Gallery

See photos of our dirt-leery editor getting up to speed off-road on big Adventure-Touring bikes during the RawHyde Adventures Intro to Adventure class. Read more in the RawHyde ADV Intro to Adventure Class.

Slideshow
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A big part of the Intro to Adventure instruction at RawHyde is getting comfortable with breaking traction on the dirt, so braking drills reinforce the feeling that slides can be controlled.
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The RawHyde instructors keep the classroom setting informal and fun, asking students to share their own ah-hah moments.
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The RawHyde instructors take their job seriously, and part of that job is making the learning environment fun and unintimidating.
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Instructor Owen Balduf doing his best to distract the author, who should be keeping his eyes on the path ahead...
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Did we mention the RawHyde training is fun?
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One of the big tricks for street riders heading off-road is getting the fine nuance of inputs at the controls, feathering the clutch in the friction zone and learning to precisely articulate the brakes.
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The instructors are there for encouragement and positive feedback.
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Drills, drills and more drills... the RawHyde itinerary hammers home concepts by repetition.
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Shawn Thomas keeps the Intro class rolling, with years of experience and having guided thousands of riders through the RawHyde curriculum.
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Practicing to stop with braking drills...
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...leads to the inevitable low-speed get-offs...
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These low-speed crashes are to be expected, and every student, including us, dumped their bike during the two-day course.
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Instructors explain the drill, then demonstrate and turn students loose.
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Whoops look easy. But add a 500-plus pound bike and inexperienced rider... watch out. There have been some spectacular whiskey throttle gaffes in this part of the class. Take things at an easy pace and mind that throttle hand. You ain't now James Stewart!
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Take 'er easy on the Beemer.
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Shawn shows the drill without the bike, to demonstrate the proper form. Instructors teach the proper technique, but also explain the why. Students discover that one of the biggest takeaways from RawHyde is the mental aspect of off-road riding.
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Now Owen shows what Shawn was explaining.
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Then it's the students turn, with the instructors giving immediate feedback.
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Leaning the GS over in the dirt on street tires... while nerve-wracking for off-road newbies, it's important to learn where the limits of traction are and calibrate your riding thusly.
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Running continuous loops through the turning single-track on the RawHyde ranch, students get more and more comfortable in the dirt.
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For our Intro to Adventure class we sourced a 2013 BMW R1200GS, but students can rent bikes from the RawHyde fleet of BMWs.
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Most GS riders don't appreciate the potential of their mounts - true adventure bikes that can carry the rider to surprising destinations after the rider masters some basic fundamentals during the RawHyde training.