(FROM PART ONE)
“Will it be a hot, smelly, uneventful and underwhelming affair we drove a gazillion miles through the night to attend? Will it be the start of something new or a one time shindig? Will we look back at the end of our days and tell our grandkids about that year we packed up the baby’s and grabbed the old lady’s and headed out to the promised land for a couple nights of unforgettable Mischief, Mayhem and Motorcycles?” “…We know which outcome our bets are placed, but we’ll let ya know. “
We told you all in PART 1 that we’d let ya know on what the vibe was at ByoCampout. Well, we’re gonna try.
First of all, if you didn’t read PART 1 (go read it), ByoCampout was an open invite, Moto-inspired campout south of Factory Butte and west of Caineville Utah, and it was ANYTHING but uneventful and underwhelming. It was quite eventful, and it whelmed us right over the top of the spines we camped under all weekend. It was hot, and as we drive Vana White (our moto-adventure van) home we can’t deny that our scent emulates that of a waiting room in small town tire shop that serves hot sauce with their day old popcorn (use your imagination). Despite our stench, we’re hoping and praying that this was indeed not, a one-time shindig. We’ll explain why…
There's a feeling that seems to be shared with the collective of ByoCampout’s attendees as we say goodbye to this epic weekend of Moto-camping, like-minded individuals, smokin’ tires, campfires and fireworks…and that feeling is a tough one to put into words. The best way I can think to describe it, is if you’ve ever attended a Sunday Matinee and saw a movie that hit you so hard, a movie that made you feel such a way that you forgot anything outside of the film even existed… and then you walk outside after a quiet, contemplative exit, and you’re met by the bright sun and busy world. Know the feeling we’re talking about? It’s confusing, you have to squint as you re-acclimate to reality and it’s almost offensive that the world is moving forward while you’re trying to process. Make sense?
(Rad group shot by the homie @zachiatrist)
But alas, even with the aforementioned state of confusion, let’s talk about ByoCampout.
We arrived at approximately 6:03 am Saturday, after a 12 hour van-ride from our hometown of Sheridan, Wyoming. 753 miles of music, motorcycle fumes and anticipation for what was to come and we finally made it. Welcomed by the unrelenting glare of a disco ball and it’s colorful companion, a plastic pink flamingo, we knew we had found the right spot. Now though we knew of and were known by some at the camp, we really didn’t have a whole lot of familiarity with the group, so we did our best to pull in and unload motorcycles quietly, and get our bed set up in Vana White for a good nights rest. An hour and a half later, the camp began to come to life. We woke up to the sweet sounds of bikes unloading, camp stoves cooking, conversation and excitement at the thing ahead of us… it was officially on.
We kicked off the morning with a quick rip on the Sportster through the bennonite clay of Swing Arm City. (If you ever need a way to wake up after an hour and a half of sleep, we highly recommend this technique.) We offered our finest petite cinnamon rolls to the camp as we introduced ourselves and got familiar with the vibe. The vibe was rad. Trucks, trailers, vans, tents and an eclectic array of motorcycles came together to set the stage, it felt like a home we didn’t know we had.
As any Moto-centric event should, we kicked off the morning with a kickstands up at 10am ride toward Grand Staircase- Escalante, an epic adventure by itself if you ever get the chance. Through tasty roads and gorgeous canyons, we got to know our group in a way only those who ride can really understand. Riding with people tells you a lot about them, believe it or not. Fast or slow? Easy turns or 45 degree leans through every twist? Smile when the helmet come off at the gas station or the troubled look of labor that says “are we done yet”? Well, let’s just say we found the right group. We shredded the twists and turns of the 24 through Capital Reef National Park and then charged south up the 12 to 10,000 feet and back down for lunch at the Burr Trail Grill. Have the fried green tomatoes, you won’t be mad. From there it was out Hell’s Backbone for more epic scenery and fun roads and then a hard charge back to camp to shred the clay.
Vintage BMW’s, Triumphs, dirt bikes and Harley’s took the to hills and clay where most of the bikes had really no business being, but damnit if it wasn’t fun. We wrecked bikes, we climbed hills, we jumped everything and we couldn’t help but smile at the reality of the present moment. There were no rules. There was no one yelling to “be careful” or “don’t do that” or really tell us anything. We felt free. We WERE free. We were free and we didn’t die, we didn’t hurt anyone (except ourselves a few times) and we managed to have the time of our lives with a conscious respect for the people around us and the space provided. No conflict, no bad attitudes, no bad moments and no bad memories. After a few hours of burned clutches, dusted hogs and rips up the sidewalls, someone lit a fire, lit a firework, lit up Donna the Discoball, the sound system exclaimed that the night was here, and the night young.
Where do we go from here? What followed this point is the story is either deeper than words on a screen can get or just beyond our writing skills. The day was unbeatable, the night had begun… Do we tell you that about bonfires, dance party’s, fireworks, tandem hillclimbs, jumping Harleys, dueling burnouts and wheelies up and down a 100 foot spine? Do we tell you about friendships beginning, stories exchanged, whiskey shared, making s’mores? Do we tell you about 45 of the raddest folks from all over taking over a nearby swimming hole? Do we tell you about blowing up a disco ball as the sun set on the campout and on the raddest weekend trip we’ve ever taken? To be honest, we don’t know what to tell you to truly understand the magic of ByoCampout 2018. We said at the beginning of this blog article that we’d try to let ya know the vibe. Every person there last weekend had their own story. Actors, models, photographers, creatives, executives, lowlifes, mechanics, athletes, laborers, vagabonds and musicians. Some had means, some had less. Some rode 1500 miles to get there, some rode 100. It didn’t matter who you were, it didn’t matter where you came from. It was a weekend of like-minded individuals coming together and celebrating their breath with their own means of expression. It was a weekend of old friends making new memories and strangers making new old friends. It was a weekend of meeting the best people and doing things we once only dreamed about thanks to a mutual interest in motorcycles, the culture they create and the community they attract. It was a magic weekend, and if you weren’t there, we can’t really explain the reason(s) why.
So what the purpose? What’s this article for? Is it a “Just so you know” informative piece so other people know something happened? Is it a braggadocios shout out to the people who made it so we can feel superior to those that didn’t? Not at all. This article is an invite, a challenge and a plea. We started this company to engage with, participate in and contribute to a culture and community that we feel in love with. We set out to pour fuel on the sparks that ignite the best of this faction and the fan the flames. We want this scene to live and thrive and it’s weekends like this where it is at it’s absolute peak of life. It’s the ripples of events like this that start the waves we hope to ride ’til our last breath. Part of the magic of this weekend was it’s attainability. ByoCampout had no sponsors, no budget, no formal organizers or hosts (though we know and are thankful to those responsible for it’s beginning, we love you.) and no reason why whoever is reading this couldn’t attend, or even kick off an party like it. So we invite you, if this sounds fun to you, next time you hear of a mysterious moto-adventure like this one, don’t find the reasons why not. Say yes and let go, for dear life. We challenge you, next time you “could” go for a ride with your friends, family or self but you have so much to do… go. We plead with you, for the love of all that is good in the world of motorcycles, friends and adventure, take the risk. We appeal to the picture in your head of what you could be doing with your life. Do it. Life is unknown, our time here is limited, and times like we just had at ByoCampout are the ones that will bring a smile to our face and a comfort to our heart in our last days. Don't die regretting.
“It’s not because things are difficult that we dare not venture. It’s because we dare not venture that they are difficult.” — Seneca
There’s magic in the mystery. Take more chances on good times, folks. Trust us, you won’t regret it.