Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Gravelling my way?

Joe asked about riding on gravel roads. Let me tell you, it's not something to be taken lightly. My uncle had a scooter which may or may not have been a Cushman. He said it was British when I spoke to him, but according to my brother, our dad said it was a Cushman. At this point, both have shuffled off this mortal coil, so getting an answer is impossible this side of the veil.

In any event, my dad was riding my uncle's scooter one day and took a spill on a gravel road. My Uncle Cliff told me that he helped my grandfather (a country doctor), spend two hours pulling gravel out of Dad's backside.

Another story for the mix; I was trying to teach my lovely wife to ride. She was doing very well but decided to turn in to a gravel parking lot, and down the Kymco went, taking the Shelly with it. she hasn't gotten near a two wheeler since.

So, gravel isn't the best surface on which to ride a scooter. It's not the worst, but definitely poses a danger. Add to this road surface irregularities such as speed bumps, or potholes, and the riding becomes even more daunting.

The best bet on any slippery surface is to take it slow. Some gravel and dirt roads aren't as bad as one might think, especially if they are well worn from frequent use. Still, proceeding cautiously is the way to go.

Corners can be daunting on gravel, but they aren't so bad if you're being cautious. If it's a mostly dirt track with some gravel on the road surface, it will be easier to navigate. If the surface is entirely loose gravel, extreme caution is advised. Take your time. This is the type of gravel that is more likely to coax a scooter or motorbike off its wheels. Go slowly, make no sudden turns and you'll stay upright.

So, Joe, gravel is difficult to ride on, but if you're ever in a situation where you have no other option, if you take your time, you should be fine.  


Joe said...


I apologize for the delayed thanks. I've been away (and still am) and when I went to write this response on the tablet I discovered that it won't let me keep more than one google log-in on it without somehow linking them all together.

Thanks so much for the thorough reply on this question of mine. I'd feared that this would be the answer, but since it is I'll stick to the pavement. I don't usually venture onto gravel of any kind unless I need a bathroom stop and crossing the rocks is the only way to get to where I need to be. I appreciate your taking the time to address this!


Paul Smith said...

Happy to Joe. I don't blame you for avoiding gravel, I do as well, but it is a good skill to have.