Big Dogs...

So what is the Big Dog?

Yes, he's a Big Dog, doing what Big Dogs do...

The BIG DOG RIDE, also known as the BIG DOG ADVENTURE RIDE is an "Invitational Ride" that was originally designed for owners of BMW G/S and GS model motorcycles. It is neither a race nor a rally. It is an annual gathering of a fraternity of aficionados of BMW G/S, GS and other brands of "adventure styled or manufactured" motorcycles that mutually appreciate riding their motorcycles with like minded philosophers in the best environment for on and off-road riding in the world, the Rocky Mountains of North America.

High, tough, riding in The Rocky Mountains, where trails like these are home to mountains goats and "BIG DOGS."

The BIG DOG ADVENTURE RIDE incorporates motorcycle skill levels of riding for both amateur and professional classes. Entry level riders are not encouraged to apply for an Invitation. The event, which is usually held in the middle of August, has been described as the "world's highest, toughest, dirtiest, and meanest adventure riding event.

The number of participants varies from year to year, however the number of new entrants is limited by the number of openings created by veteran BIG DOGS not being able to accept their Invitations. Veteran BIG DOGS from prior years in good standing are offered Invitations first. Those unable to accept their Invitation due to job, wife, girlfriend, etc. create a possible opening for a new entrant. Normally 80% of the entrants in the annual BIG DOG RIDE are veterans from prior years. Some veterans have entered the BIG DOG RIDE every year since they were initially invited. New BIG DOG invitees are taken from a waiting list compiled during the year.

LAST forevermore event info


A change in elevation means a change in temperature. Here, in August, BIG DOG entrants were riding in fresh snow in the morning, 100-degree heat in the desert that afternoon.

Each year an entrant can expect to ride between 800-1,200 miles on the BIG DOG RIDE over some of the highest, toughest mountain passes in the Rocky Mountain range, sometimes reaching 14,000 feet above sea level. Rain, snow and sleet can be encountered in August, as well as 100-degree heat. The BIG DOG RIDE has been to Colorado, Utah, Wyoming and Montana. Riders often make numerous crossings of the Continental Divide, sometimes fording swollen streams, and riding over snow fields and shale cliffs. It is not unusual for a rider to be in a single-track path no wider than 24 inches, with a drop-off of 1,000 feet on one side and a sheer rock cliff on the other.

Crossing a deep stream can sometime result in a stalled engine if the water is too deep, which means putting down both feet in the ice cold water. One BIG DOG wisely enters each year wearing tennis shoes. He claims this lets him keep riding when wet instead of stopping to empty water filled motocross boots as the tennis shoes dry out from the air moving by as he races over the mountains.

The BIG DOG RIDE is not for the meek, mild or poseur adventure rider. It is dangerous, and fun. BIG DOG riders can be heard laughing from mountain tops at the start of the event to the finish, as well as from and to their homes, often as far away as Vermont, Florida, Canada and California.

Generally, participants ride their motorcycles to the event where they off-load luggage, saddle and tank bags, and unbolt windshields. Sometimes these are carried to the event motel base by truck or trailer supplied by the organizers, leaving the BIG DOGS free of the encumbering weight each day as they ride over treacherous mountain passes.

Each entrant is responsible for the maintenance and repair of their own motorcycles. As different routes are taken by various groups of riders, check-in by the riders at the end of each riding day is mandatory to insure all riders have completed each stage.

There is an entry fee for the event which often includes two nights of sponsored dinners, with the world famous "all you can eat" 2-inch thick BIG DOG T-bone steak dinner on Saturday night. One evening usually includes participant multi-media presentations by entrants who share some of their global adventures with those present.

A BIG DOG woofs down his 2 inch thick steak at the annual BIG DOG Saturday night banquet.

The party is over - the Big Dog Ride is nevermore.

The BIG DOG RIDE can be contacted at:

Great American Motorcycle Adventures, Inc
P.O. Box 1598
Englewood, CO 80150-1598 USA

Please do not expect an immediate response when you contact us, as there is a high probability that we will be riding our GS motorcycles when you do, somewhere on the globe.


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