Joe Shipman makes news at the Big Nasty and other Carnegie Updates


I went riding at Carnegie last weekend and had a lovely time on my WR-250F even though I fell and sprained my finger.  It goes with the territory and I just kept on riding because it was such fun just swooping through the turns. I was still having fun later in the day when everybody else had left.

Part of the reason for the great ride was that I had had my suspension done by 707 Racing Suspension a few months ago. Owner, Joel Burkett, who has been riding for fun and racing consistently for 15 years, rebuilt and re-valved my suspension. He has done two of my bikes (CRF45oR and WR250F) and he really made a difference in how my bikes handle and how they track through rough terrain and through huge whoops. You Carnegie riders know what I mean. Riding Carnegie in the summer time is no picnic. See:

I like to climb the hills at Carnegie but I am no competitive hill climber although I sometimes ride with a few of those folks. After my ride I stopped by Moto Mart and asked Tony Shipman how his son Joe Shipman did in Utah at the Big Nasty. Turns out that he won the Open Pro class and the King of the Hill event (top ten competitors compete for a big cash award). I was understandably impressed. Anybody else with outstanding results should comment on this post. The official results aren’t in yet.

I also want to give a big shout out to park personnel and rangers who are doing everything in their power to keep our park open. OK so maybe we can no longer ride on the historic single track trails looping around the park, but we will still have somewhere  challenging to ride and that is a huge plus.

Sometimes I get too fixated on what we lost to be grateful for what we still have. Anyways I want to give a big hug to head ranger Randy and his friends at Carnegie. I also want to salute riders like Pete Krunich and Mark Speed for making environmentally approved  single track trails for us to ride. They do it for fee and they both ride extreme terrain for fun when they aren’t working on the new trails. Pete fashioned a plow for the rear of his bike and he claims that it improves the bikes handling in the soft stuff.

Pete and his son Petey are both super competitive pro hill climb racers and Mark just rides for fun but I dare you to keep up with him. Two of his sons, Shane and Kyle Speed are extremely talented pro hill climb racers. And then there is Diana Mead’s son Logan Mead who is a super fast pro hill climb racer. They all grew up riding at Carnegie and that is why they are so outstanding. I am sure that I am missing a few of our greatest, but like I said I am not a hill climb racer myself and get my news second hand. If anybody has anything to add you can put it in the comment section and I will transfer it to this blog.


Posted in Carnegie, Racers | 1 Comment



The following is a copy of a notice published by Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission:


NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation (OHMVR) Commission, pursuant to authority contained in Section 5090.24 of the Public Resources Code and Section 11120 et seq. of the Government Code, will meet on October 21, 2016 according to the following schedule.

OHMVR Commission Meeting: Friday, October 21, 2016 10:00 a.m. – until adjournment

Sacramento City Hall
915 I Street
Sacramento, CA 95814

The Commission will hold a public meeting to consider the certification of the Final Environmental Impact Report for and approval of the Carnegie SVRA General Plan.

Information on agenda items will be available for review at If individuals are unable to obtain information through this source, please contact the OHMVR Division at (916) 324-4442. Referenced materials may undergo modification and will be available to the public as changes are made.

Meeting facilities are accessible to people with disabilities. If you need specific accommodations, please call Vicki Perez at (916) 324-4442.

NOTICE IS GIVEN that any person may file a written statement on the proposed actions by writing to the undersigned or may present written statements at the meeting on October 21, 2016. Any person handing out written material to the OHMVR Commission should also provide the Recording Secretary with an additional six (6) copies making a total of fourteen (14) copies. Members of the public presenting visual aids (projected media) as part of their public comments to the Commission are requested to submit the material(s) to the OHMVR Division five (5) days prior to the scheduled meeting.

The Division reserves the right to decline to show photographs that violate personal privacy (photos without a release from the person/people shown in the photograph) or other valid reason in the opinion of the Division and its legal counsel. Inquiries may be directed to the OHMVR Division at 1725 23rd Street, Suite 200, Sacramento, California 95816 or (916) 324-4442.

NOTICE IS ALSO GIVEN that the Commission meeting minutes will be posted on the OHMVR website after being approved (

Brian E. Robertson, Acting Division Chief California State Parks Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division

Then if you have a lot of free time you can read the Carnegie General Plan and Environmental Impact Report. You will need to be conversant with it if you are going to go to the meeting where the public will have an opportunity to provide comments on the approval of the General Plan. You can find the General Plan on line at All interested parties are encouraged to attend the OHMVR Commission meeting.

The General Plan is something designed to placate the opponents of OHV recreation rather than current Carnegie riders. It is all about power and politics, but if we don’t support this plan we will have to say goodby to any future for off road recreation at Carnegie. It certainly won’t be the park we have come to love as it more designed for its atheistic value to outsiders than a place to provide us with the challenges we had come to expect.

The good thing is that the planning commission has met all the objections of the opponents  of public OHV recreation (they can and do ride four wheel vehicles  on their own nine thousand acre ranch) and there is nothing that they can say that has not been met by the provisions of the General Plan. This has all been done with the kind assistance of Celeste Garamendi and her friends at East Bay Regional Parks District, among others. After all has been said and done we can only follow the money. Maybe one day a good expose can have all this craziness undone, but for now this is what we got, a lot of ink and a lot of wasted money.


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Hillary Clinton: The Deplorables – What Is In A Word?


I think that Hillary made a mistake calling half of Trump’s supporters a basket of deplorables. I have a Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary here in my lap and there is no noun deplorable that can be made a plural by adding an “s” as in deplorables (my spell check doesn’t approve of the word either). She has got it all wrong. My dictionary says deplorable is an adjective like a deplorable band of followers or a deplorable politician but you can’t have a basket of deporables.That just doesn’t make sense.

It is an adjective or a word modifying a noun and is defined as meaning bad or wretched something or other. The dictionary defines wretched as deeply affected, dejected or distressed in body or mind; or maybe extremely or deplorably bad or distressing. Wait deplorably bad is circular reasoning or is it a tautology? The dictionary gives us one more clue; being or appearing mean miserable or contemptible. Or how about this; very poor in quality or ability. OK so we get the picture. This basket of deplorables is not something we would bring home to meet our mothers.

If we take her words in context, she prefaced her comment with the idea that the deplorables are “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, you name it.” Wow that about covers the worst of the worst of humankind. She should have been clearer and called them deplorable, horrible, wretched, morally repugnant evil human beings. She could have left it at that and we would have understood her meaning. Otherwise people might get the idea that she hasn’t mastered the English language yet or uses it without regard to the accepted rules of grammar.  My God she is a lawyer. They never use the English language loosely or to purposely deceive others unless they are collecting a bill for services rendered like the innkeeper in Les Miserables.

And Hillary, get this, is implying that the basket of deporables are the ones who are intolerant. Excuse me! What the %*#*^&*…

Maybe it is just a misspelling. After all Mark Twain once said I don’t give a damn for a man that can only spell a word one way. I guess he would approve of Hillary’s use of language. It is not hard to decipher her meaning given her political posturing. This speech is a clear attempt to do Trump one better in the art of the put down. But instead of putting down her opponent like any other politician worth his or her salt, she has managed to malign half of all the voters who cast their ballots overwhelmingly for Trump in the primaries. I guess she only stands for some of the folks in this country and she will treat her opponents as trash that has to be thrown out with the garbage – Les Deplorables.


Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

More fiddling by the EPA on Ethanol standards

The EPA has re-issued a rule that had previously been defeated by the American Motorcycle Association. The EPA is allowing gas stations to sell E10 out of the same pumps as E15. This is the fuel which is destructive to motorcycles and some older cars and trucks. In order to keep concentrations of E15 down, the EPA is requiring that if you pick the safer fuel (lower concentration of ethanol) you will have to purchase at least four gallons. This prevents miss fueling when the fuel left over from a previous purchase gets into your mixture. Although their intentions are good, it  won’t work for motorcycles with smaller gas tanks that have fill up on E10. What do they think we should do… Let the rest of it overflow onto the ground because our tanks aren’t big enough to hold four gallons? And how many gas stations are going to sell the both blends from different pumps?



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Is it a huge conspiracy between the United States government and the motor vehicle manufacturers to make motor vehicles sold in the US in the last few years obsolete?  The FDA admits that the new mandates for increasing the ethanol content in gasoline will wreak havoc on engines built to run on gasoline. Motorcyclists, as well as power boats, and ATV riders will be the most vulnerable to the new standards. Engines for use in cars and trucks capable of burning higher concentrations of ethanol have been on the market for years. It is only the thrifty and/or poor who are left out having less up-to-date cars and trucks that can not run on the new 15% ethanol. Recent motorcycles, power boats and ATVs sold in the US do not have the redesigned engines capable of burning higher levels of ethanol. They are left out altogether.  Was this an oversight? Is anybody going to pay attention and do something about it? I think not…

The AMA knows what is happening and opposes E15 and any fuel containing more than ten percent ethanol (E10) because it can cause engine and fuel system failure to your motorcycle or all-terrain vehicle, and can void manufacturers’ warranties. The AMA looks out for our rights and alerted members to the problem. I wrote a letter to the EPA and President Obama protesting that higher ethanol blends will wreak havoc on older car and truck engines as well as motorcycle engines not built to run on higher ethanol blends.

His reply was essentially tough luck. He said that the mandate to increase ethanol was passed to clean up the atmosphere. That is bullshit; these mandates for increasing ethanol production using corn were originally passed in 1970 by President Bush so that (he said) we would not be so reliant on foreign sources of energy. Contrary to popular belief, scientific analysis — including analysis from the Environmental Protection Agency — proves that the net greenhouse gas impact of corn ethanol is much worse than that of gasoline. Be that as it may: The corn farmers are raking it in.

Just about every gallon of gas pumped today contains as much as 10 percent domestically produced ethanol and that amount is about to increase. Gummed-up fuel systems, damaged tanks and phase separation caused by stray moisture infiltrating fuel systems have plagued many consumers since this mixture debuted, and the problems will only get worse if government policy to increase the proportion of ethanol to gasoline is implemented. It is already happening and will be the norm because corn farmers have already increased production of bio fuels in accordance to government mandates.

Gasoline diluted with ethanol is a perfectly acceptable motor fuel when it’s stored properly, dispensed promptly and burned in vehicles and power equipment designed to handle it. The problem is that older cars, almost all motorcycles, ATVs and power boats are not built to safely use these new higher ethanol blends. Essentially ethanol added to gasoline can destroy your motorcycle’s engine. It has to be stored in a closed system which is not the case for motorcycles and burned promptly so it does not sit around for any length of time. Who has not left gasoline in their tanks between rides? That is not even taking into account the corrosive effects of this fuel on your engine’s fuel delivery system.

Most water infiltration is from condensation. As the temperature in a tank changes, air has to be vented in and out or the tank will bulge or split. Incoming air carries moisture. When the H2O in the gas gets above a critical percentage—its saturation point—all of the water and alcohol drops out and settles into the bottom of the tank. This is phase separation; the various components of the fuel are no longer a homogeneous mixture. Worse yet, the gasoline remaining above the water probably lost three octane points, because today’s gasoline relies heavily on the high-octane equivalence (130) of alcohol to achieve its octane rating. It’s also missing a bunch of additives that stayed in the alcohol—so the major problem with higher concentrations of ethanol is that if it is stored in your vehicle for any length of time it releases moisture that can gum up your engine. Practically this means that you would have to drain the gas tank and dispose of it as hazardous waste after each ride.

They say that highly tuned two-stroke engines will run leaner (and consequently hotter) on the lower Btu/gallon alcohol mix, potentially leading to melted pistons and scuffed cylinder walls. Alcohol will also scour varnish and deposits out of the fuel system that have remained in place for years, which will eventually wind up in the filter or main jet, choking off the engine’s fuel supply. Worse yet, the alcohol itself ­oxidizes in the tank and produces a tenacious brown glop that’s far more damaging to fuel systems than the ­varnish we’re used to seeing in pure petroleum fuels. In warmer weather, you can see varnish starting to form within a month of dispensing fresh fuel into a vehicle tank or storage can. Some say that owners should drain the tank, running the engine till it quits and then fogging the inside of the tank and the cylinder with oil to prevent corrosion. Even of that means that you will be burning oil like a two stroke? Whatever…

Alcohol is corrosive and can degrade plastic, rubber or even metal parts in the fuel system that weren’t engineered to use alcohol-bearing fuel which is the case with older cars and almost all motorcycles and ATVs. To burn higher blends of ethanol you will need to replace your parts with corrosion-resistant tanks, alcohol-tolerant rubber lines, seals and fuel-pump diaphragms, and plastic fuel-system parts that won’t swell up in the presence of alcohol.

Even the EPA admits that there are problems using bio-fuels. According to the EPA, “ethanol impacts motor vehicles in two primary ways. First … ethanol leans the ratio (increases the proportion of oxygen relative to hydrocarbons) which can lead to increased exhaust gas temperatures and potentially increase incremental deterioration of emission control hardware and performance over time, possibly causing catalyst failure. Second, ethanol can cause materials compatibility issues, which may lead to other component failures.”


We need to rise up and demand accountability from our government. The Federal Trade Commission is recommending more labeling at the gas pump as its solution to the problem. But the American Motorcyclist Association believes that is not enough. It wrote a memo to AMA members to defeat a measure  to label blends of more than 10% ethanol. Read this and you can get an idea of what is in store for us if nothing is done to ensure that the 10% and 0% blends are made available in the US market.

The Federal Trade Commission issued a rule proposal to provide requirements for rating and certifying ethanol blends and requirements for labeling blends of more than 10 percent ethanol.

But this rule exempts the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s E15-approved label.

This rule is for an additional label to be placed on the fuel pump “in response to the emergence of ethanol blends as a retail fuel and the likely increased availability of such blends.”

With this rule, it only means gasoline with higher blends of ethanol will emerge into the marketplace.

The AMA believes this proposal will cause even more confusion given the events surrounding the rollout of E15 into the marketplace. The AMA opposes E15 and any fuel containing more than ten percent ethanol because it can cause engine and fuel system failure to your motorcycle or all-terrain vehicle, and can void manufacturers’ warranties.

 “In motorcycles and non-road products , EPA raised engine-failure concerns from overheating.”

The FTC is seeking public comments now on the rule proposal that calls for the additional label to identify higher ethanol blended fuels. You can tell the agency how this proposal will cause even more confusion, given the events surrounding the rollout of E15 into the marketplace.

The AMA does not believe this new label will do what it is intended to do – keep users from misfueling with higher ethanol blended fuels. It simply does not provide clear direction. Another label on a blender pump that already has many labels will not be sufficient to avoid misfueling and could be easily overlooked.

The proposed rule provides no direction on where on the pump the label should be located. Moreover, the FTC is proposing that the label be rounded to the nearest factor of 10. How will this accurately inform the consumer of the type of fuel called for by the vehicle owner’s manual? Will a fuel containing 11 percent to 14 percent ethanol be labeled as 10 percent ethanol? Is the FTC aware that manufacturers’ warranties are valid only for the use of fuel containing 10 percent ethanol by volume or less?

Help protect 22 million motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles in America — and the riders who depend on their safe operation — from inadvertent misfueling. Tell the FTC you want safe access to fuel for motorcycles and ATVs!”


Posted in motorcycles, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Riding My Trials Bike in my Front Yard

trials in yardDSCN9837

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