Day two’s route was the longest of the school: 210km. Typical international rallies are 480-640 km/day (half transfer, half racing), for seven days, so we were still in the minor leagues at this distance. I prepared as well as I could, marked my roadbook well, fueled my body and cleared my mind. I was determined to stay on route and minimize needless time losses. I was instructed to have confidence that I was on route when all the clues matched and to roll through the turns while simultaneously adjusting the odometer and roadbook to avoid massive time losses due to dead stops. I met all those goals in the first 30km of the route, and my confidence soared. I approached a complicated tulip and took the trail that I thought was correct. I was soon passed by Charlie Rauseo, who notably brought rally racing to American privateers, finding assurance in our mutual trail selection. A few km’s passed and although course obstacles somewhat lined up with the roadbook, small errors were stacking and my confidence meter declined. Charlie was at a full stop at a trail intersection and I knew I was off route, so I quickly reversed direction, but became indecisive. I reversed again, but there was no sign of Charlie, and by then there were too many of my own tracks to make out which ones might have been his. The odometer was now off and I didn’t have a clear understanding of where my original error occurred. I killed the engine and could hear no bikes. Since this was a training roadbook, coordinates were given (rally races do not allow use of GPS so entered them into my GPS to no avail (user error). I was utterly lost. After much frustration, I did make out a park road on the GPS and eventually rode that back to camp. I only made about 40km’s into the route! Ugh. I did learn a lot, not only about navigation but also about a fundamental principle of rally racing: self-reliance. While riding in my disoriented state, I realized that if I were to injure myself or my bike, I would be totally on my own. I rode conservatively and my senses were on high alert. Although I had a GPS tracker in my vest, I was in survival mode, knowing it was just me and my machine, and help would be a long way off. Later that evening I realized that the rally experience provides the adventure I crave and pursue in climbing, but on a dirt bike! The perfect mix.