The break in the trees presented a welcoming sunshine over rolling hills in the distance. The road makes you feel on top of the world as you look across what feels like 100 miles to the horizon. Next thing you know, you’re twisting around a river surrounded by the mountain you just blasted down. Squirrels scramble to get out of the way as you shake the ground while leaves fall from the trees above you. The Gypsy Run took me through some of the best roads and places I have ever seen. The whole route felt like a dream of the best ride you can imagine. Small towns where everyone waves, ridiculous mountain roads, hilly country roads, with a tiny bit of highway – this ride had it all. I’ve always been the type of guy who could care less about the destination as long as the ride there was something to talk about later, and I still can’t stop talking about it.
After departing from Cool Beans Coffee in Oradell, NJ on Friday morning, I realized how big this ride actually was. I crested a hill and saw a snake of bikes stretching damn near a half mile with even more on the other side of the next corner and in my mirror. We engulfed the first gas stop with a vengeance and the only non-motorcycle there was the Biltwell van. From the Shell Station, everyone kinda split up and continued the trip that the Kickstart Cycle guys laid out for us. Gypsy Run 10 was my first Gypsy Run so I had no idea what to expect and they did one hell of a job that won’t be topped anytime soon. Snaking through New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York, the miles didn’t matter. I had no idea where I was and could not care one bit. I had been wanting to do this run for about 5 years now so I was just soaking it all in. With nothing but a piece of yellow paper telling me when to turn, we somehow ended up in Narrowsburg, NY.
The campsite was huge with half lining the field, and the other half covered in the treeline bordering the river. We set up camp, met our neighbors and started a camp fire before venturing off to meet up with a few friends. They hadn’t started serving the beer yet so we started to wander around only to be stopped by a downpour of rain. But the bikes just kept pouring in. Big groups, solo riders, they just kept coming. Once the food truck opened and they started giving out the free beer, the party got started with every one piling into the big red barn near the trees. Slowly but surely, the night became a blur as I stumbled into my tent for a much needed rest.
Saturday morning held the best 8am wakeup call I could have asked for: holeshots, drag racing, and redline revs. I stumbled out of the tent the same way I stumbled in, beer in hand. Everyone woke up eventually and we got the day started with a quick run to this small gas station/general store/restaurant. I really wish I could remember the name of it because they had the best sausage, egg, and cheese bagel I have ever had. We blasted back to camp to let the food settle and take care of a few things before we headed out on our ride. We opted to just kinda do our own thing and just guess where to go instead of following one of the Babes Ride Out routes. Scraping around one 25mph corner after the next, the sun tried it’s hardest to push through the trees. With the area so breathtaking, I don’t think there was a bad road within 20 miles of the camp ground so you couldn’t go wrong. It was getting hot and we chose the only spot without any shade to stop (it had a great view), before starting our way home for a dip in the river.
The games started and everyone gathered around the target. Tomahawks were thrown, knives were tossed, sledgehammers were broken, and tires were heaved. Then everyone shifted between the soccer goals in the middle of the field for the Kayak races. Now that was what everyone was waiting for. Spill after spill, everyone tried their best but only a few succeeded. Most went out in a blaze of glory, or a blaze of nipples in one man’s case who refused to let go and slid the whole course on his stomach. The bonfire popped to life, everyone cheered, and the good times kept flowing like the beer.
I can’t think of a single bad time or complaint I had on this trip. Even the ride home on Sunday morning seemed perfect. I have to say thanks to Walter for putting this awesome event on, I’m keeping the route map and will visit it again soon. They did a hell of a job with every aspect. From the bar, the ride, and getting everyone signed up and together for the games, I never saw him without a smile on his face having a good time.
I wish I could say I’ll see ya next year, but I can’t. Gypsy Run 10 was my first time, the best time, for the last time. Thanks to everyone I met and chatted with. Hope to meet up with all somewhere down the road.