The Loop

The Loop – Duffy Lake Loop.  Almost all riding and driving groups will have one.  A nearby, basic circuit containing some interesting roads that take you back to the starting point.  For us, there is only one “Loop”.

The Loop is made up of distinct stages, with associated risks.   Going clockwise:

  1. Sea to Sky – Vancouver to Pemberton (99) – Police, traffic, rain
  2. Forest – Pemberton to Lilloet (99) – wet bridges, bears, rough roads
  3. Desert – Lilloet to Boston Bar/Hope (12) – fallen rocks, cows, heat
  4. Boring – Hope to Vancouver (1) – Traffic, police

This route is notorious essentially for the May Long Curse.  Starting with a painful 12 hour, 5pm to 5am run in 2005 with a dented rim and growing dollar value year after year until it consumed a Lexus, the Loop is no longer done for May Long Weekend.



The Bulldozer

The Bulldozer – a type of rabbit that clears the way.  Usually a larger vehicle with bright headlights.

A Snow Plow is the basic example – makes way for you to be able to pass.  But in this case Emergency response vehicles,  Ambulances, Fire trucks, Police cars, give a better idea of what happens..  Flashing lights and sirens move cars out of the way.  Unfortunately, traffic usually collapses back in immediately and laws usually prevent you from following too closely, limiting their usefulness.

What you are usually looking for is a serial tailgater without fear.  A car willing to ride the bumper of the car in front until it moves over.  A driver willing to brave Mutually Assured Destruction in the case of a “brake check” maneuver.

If you see a bulldozer coming up from behind – move over.  Let it do it’s job and follow in it’s wake.  Keep in mind, the more effective it is, the more space you want to give it.  Just in case something crazy does happen.

Unfortunately, these are fairly rare on any roads with more than 2 lanes going in the same direction.  That level of crazy is usually too impatient to wait for the slow cars to move out of the way and will usually weave amongst traffic to get ahead, leaving you with a collection of spooked cars to deal with before things settle down again.

Origins: Black Maxima, The Loop 2005, Vancouver to Hope leg.

The Wong Delay

Wong Delay – the period of time between when you’re ready to go and when you actually leave.  Usually taken up by little things that aren’t part of a major checklist, but probably should be.  These activities all must be done before you set off anyway, the delay is merely a matter of perspective – it’s just a nuisance because at some point, everyone declared they were ready to go.

This delay can be the most frustrating experience about riding in a group.  Just remember that even if you were riding solo, this delay still exists.  Take this chance to double check your own gear.  It’s usually little things – Check the GoPro(is the red light on?), your zippers, earplugs, etc.

In any case, it’s better to get everything sort out the first delay rather than interrupting the trip.  Because setting off again, the delay will again rear it’s ugly head – just hopefully shorter.

Origins:  When you’re the cause of the delay often enough, you get it named after you!

The Rabbit

The Rabbit – the vehicle you follow.  When you don’t feel like setting a pace, finding a ‘rabbit’ to follow can take the pressure off.  (See also:  CGP).  A vehicle in front gives you addition information about the road – they will hit obstacles before you and you can use their lights in the dark.

Note:  Not necessarily a VW Rabbit, but always a plus when you get to follow an old white GTI.

Not all rabbits are created equal(See also, PCD).  The wrong one can make your trip even more stressful and the right one can make the day go by a lot faster.

Look for one that appears to be alert and paying attention to the road.  If they’re swerving all over the place, drifting across lines and into rumble strips it may be best to leave it alone and wait for the next one.

Check the plates – locals usually know the roads better and have a better feel for what the local police enforcement are willing to tolerate.  And if they get it wrong, hopefully they’re the ones who get the ticket.

Pick a small rabbit – it’s nice to be able to see over or around it when you’re trying to figure out what’s going on up ahead.  When not available, settle for something with untinted windows.

Remember, in any given day, there are always more rabbits behind you.  Relax and just wait for the next one to come along.

Origins:  Greyhound racing’s lure