Ever watched in awe as the Dakar rally riders hustle big, heavy machines at high-speed off-road? Jimmy Lewis is one of only two Americans to finish on the podium at Dakar and he’s teamed up with AltRider to host Taste of Dakar in Death Valley. Costing only $225, the clinic is the cheapest excuse we’ve ever seen to spend a weekend camping in the desert, getting drunk by the campfire and learning how to ride like a Dakar racer. Whether you’re a noob or expert in the dirt doesn’t matter. If you’ve got $225, a dualsport with passable tires and the time to make the trek to Death Valley, CA, for the event on February 24-26, you’re crazy not to go. Oh, and the beer’s on AltRider.
Everyone meets Friday in Death Valley in the early evening for dinner and hanging out with beers by the campfire and Jimmy.
Saturday starts with catered breakfast, then a talking clinic demonstrating body position on the bike. The first ride is to Jimmy’s training faculty on one of 3 routes (easy, medium or challenging), where everyone breaks for lunch, then takes riding clinics on clutch modulation, control in sand and disaster avoidance. Finally, ride back to camp on a different route (again, easy, medium or challenging) and hopefully make it back in time for dinner, hot springs and a presentation on Dakar and racing by Jimmy and 2 other current Dakar racers.
Then get up Sunday and eat before everyone picks their own final planned route on the way home.
That $225 gets you guided rides, maps, a techniques clinic, five catered meals, all the booze you can muster and other beverages, camping, and actually learning how to ride that big, beastly adventure bike you’re still too scared to pitch sideways into corners on the fire roads. At $225, this is an absolute steal. There are still spots available, but we’ll be shocked if it doesn’t sell out.
Bike rentals can also be arranged with BMW Las Vegas, and there’s a hotel nearby for you non-camping types. Also, if you’ve got the time, Jimmy is offering an extra course for beginners and intermediates on Friday as a well as a more hardcore 2-day clinic Sunday and Monday. Go here to sign up, get more info and a detailed list of stuff to bring. By the way, be sure to sneak a My Little Pony sticker on Grant’s KTM 990 when you get there. We hear he loves those things.