Reunion Ride

Today’s ride was a special occasion, in that it was a reunion of sorts. Ben was back in town for the Thanksgiving Holiday, and wanted to get together with me for an ATV ride. Well, it just so happened, that Jeff’s step-brother Mark was in town also. Not to mention, Jeff’s ATV was actually up and running, well, for a while at least, more on that later.
     We all met at Jeff’s house around 11pm and for the ride started. We rode through the normal local spots and then decided to go ahead and make another trip all the way to the Ash Dumps. This was fitting, as the last time we were all there, was the last time we had all got together.
     We made it back out to the Ash Dumps where we left off last time, and wanted to see if we could find a way further north, maybe even making it to the PA border. We got a bit further, but were having trouble finding some connecting trails. Ben even stopped to ask a hunter that we passed by, if he knew of a way to the nearby mountain top. He gave been some smart-assed comment about us going over there and upsetting the hunters, which were part of the Mountaineer Militia. Which we thought was quite funny, we probably pack more firepower than they do. There were quite a few hunters out, as it was the beginning of deer season. I can understand them not liking us riding through, scaring the deer. But you never know, we could be driving them toward them. Besides, most of this land is abandoned mine property, which we have just as much right to ride on, as they do hunting there.
     We made our way past the Ash Dumps, over the next hill, but then ran into quite a few main paved roads. We went down a couple of them, hoping to find more trails, but we didnt see anything, and were exploring some other roads as we started to head back.
     We were cruising down a paved rode at least 35 mph, when his left front CV joint, or locking hub, locked up. I was right behind him, and he swerved hard to the left lane, I thought he was swerving around something in the road at first. Jeff just about lost it, he was up on two wheels it made him turn to the left so hard. But, luckily he kept her most of the way under control, and pulled off to the side of the road.
     This was a problem he had with the ride side also a few months back. He ended up just cutting out the axle so that there was nothing connecting to it to get locked up now. Just like before, it only does it sometimes, and we were able to start heading back, taking it a bit more cautious. Jeff didnt have all that much trouble most of the way back, I think it only grabbed and slightly locked up a couple times. But once we got back closer to home, the OTHER wheel started locking up really bad. To the point where he was just pushing it like a sled. Which really made no sense to us. Why would the left CV assembly screwing up, have anything to do with the disconnected CV assembly on the other side? Well, the next day Jeff called me, and it turns out it was a brake on the left side locking up. No sure why, but that at least explained what was happening.
     Jeff made it about 3/4 of the way home, when that left side was completely locking up. It would not roll forward at all, and would only roll backwards alittle. Mark had to help him get turned around and push him as he backed up one of the last hills, onto a section of the paved road. Jeff hopped on Marks ATV and they rode back to Jeff’s house to get Mark’s trailer. Ben and I stayed behind to keep an eye on Jeff’s ATV, not that anyone could have easily stole it. When they got back we got it loaded up with no problems, and said our goodbyes, as Ben and I went back into town.
     It was great to get back out and ride, even with the bit of trouble at the end. It had been a while since any of us had rode. Between Ben being out of town, my ATV being repaired from the rollover, and Jeff’s ATV trouble, it had been over a month for all of us.