It doesn’t get much better than spending a few days in the woods with new and old friends, riding dual sports on asphalt, gravel, dirt, and everything in between. A new event popped up last year, and it’s on our radar to attend.
The ADVxRally, or Adventure Cross Rally, is a time-speed-distance (TSD) rally, with the object of riding each segment of a route in a specified time at a specified average speed. That means it’s not a race. It’s not about the fastest time, but one that’s closest to the target.
Most importantly, the organizers stress that there’s no rush. Predefined times already account for how long it takes to eat lunch, get off the bike, and stop for photos. This approach makes sure you don’t miss out on the beautiful scenery and interactions with locals, which would probably happen if you just bombed through the routes. Besides the challenges of the terrain and navigation, the adventure of exploring a new area takes center stage.
Participants compete in teams made up of two riders that start at fixed intervals, spreading the field along the track. Having a riding partner helps off-road, and even our own Editor-in-Chief valued a helping hand when the Kentucky Red Clay rally lived up to its name. Most attendees simply enjoy the rally, but the TSD format is there to add an extra bit of fun.
Two of the three Red Clay Rally routes last year were only 40 miles long, but they required half a day to complete. Riders can expect to ride from 10 a.m. to about 3 p.m., which leaves time for socializing. The daily mileage depends on the difficulty of the route.
The ADVxRally is open to all riders on properly set-up enduro bikes. A GPS device, whether a standalone unit or phone, is a must. For these three events, a mid-sized adventure motorcycle will be ideal. The West Virginia event will take place June 3-5. Tellico, TN, happens September 2-4, and the grand finale will be in eastern Kentucky in October. The last event is unique in that it’s at the same time as the Red Clay Rally, an overlanding event. Last year, the participating riders marveled at the 4x4s making their way through the woods, while the overlanders were impressed by the bikes tackling the same difficult sections. Mutual fascination ensued, and this experience is unlike any other rally.
Each event costs $195 and includes three days of riding (Friday-Sunday), a camping fee, routes, a commemorative T-shirt, and entry to a raffle to win door prizes from sponsors. There will also be prizes for the top finishers of the TSD. Some events are camping only, while others have cabin options as well.