98th Annual Crotona Midnight Run

98th Annual Crotona Midnight Run

In case you never heard of it, the “Midnight Run” is the USA oldest and longest running MC ride- which takes place right here in NY. Now in its 98th year, the longest-running motorcycling road event in the nation, Ramapo Motorcycle Club’s Crotona Midnight Run, kicks off at Midnight on January 16, 2016. This mid-winter overnight timed road rally through New York’s dark and frigid Hudson Valley is USUALLY only for the hardiest riders out there – or at least for those who have invested in quality heated gear! BUT… this year we are having such a mild winter it may just be chilly instead of icy snow. You can read a ride report here:  http://users.speakeasy.net/~kadis/crotona.html  They have been held in snow, rain and all sorts of adverse conditions…  Info on the date, time etc here:

So…. who’s going?

5 Responses

  1. Armen
    | Reply

    Did this one 20+ years ago. Good for bragging rights at the old age home : )

  2. Bob Bendix
    | Reply

    I have been doing this mid winter, all night timed road run since the mid ’70’s The weather can be very changeable in the Northeast this time of year. This year we had mostly dry roads and temps in the 20’s. I borrowed my brother in law Dominic’s ’04 KLR650, which is easy to set up with the necessary lighted route sheet holder, stopwatch, etc. Dom’s KLR is regularly ridden hard in harsh, technical terrain. It has a larger skid plate and a full cage covering the tank and sides. It also had a wider luggage rack, which would prove to be very important.
    I was having a good ride, managing to hit several checkpoints inside my minute window with no penalty points. I missed several turns, but quickly realized my error and got back on course. The average speed for the event is 30mph, which simplifies timekeeping. It might sound slow, but it can be a challenge reading the route sheet and minding the stopwatch on unfamiliar back roads in the dark.
    I was running around 40mph, trying to make up some time when the deer and I collided. I barely caught a glimpse of it, as it careened into my front wheel on the right side, and took the bike out from under me. I slammed into the pavement on my right side, and the marks left indicate we slid for a good 50 feet. Although the bike landed on me, the wider rack kept the full weight of it off me. It took a few moments for me to fully process what had just happened. The bike running on it’s side nearby jarred me back to reality. I attempted to stand to walk the few feet over to the KLR, and my right ankle just collapsed, forcing me to crawl over to kill the engine and electrics.
    Another rider showed up in short order and the first car by pulled over. As I laid there assessing my situation, it quickly became apparent I had broken my right ankle and left wrist. My night was done. Or should I say it was just beginning, but in a whole new direction. The car that stopped was driven by a local EMT, so I gave the rider my competitor number and he left. The EMT laid down, cradled me in his arms, and slowly slid me backwards off the road. Once we were clear, he called 911 and help was there in a few minutes. A resident in a nearby home had heard the impact, and came out to investigate. He offered to secure my bike in his garage, and I gladly accepted, taking his information with me.
    Once the EMT’s arrived, things happened quickly. I was loaded up and we headed off to Good Samaritan Hospital in Suffern. They refused to take the dead deer. I have a label with all of my vital information on the back of my helmet. The EMT’s had never seen this before and thanked me for making their job that much easier. It’s important to note that had I been unconscious, they wouldn’t have been able to verify the info was mine. On the ride to the hospital, they were able to remove all of my gear without cutting anything off. My almost new Nolan N104 had deep scratches on the face shield and and a scuff on the forehead area. The hingeable jaw piece was undamaged. My 8 year old Tourmaster Transition jacket has minor scuffing. The elbow, shoulder and back armor did a good job of protecting me. My Tourmaster armored pants have a deep abrasion on the right knee that goes through all of the layers, down to the armor, yet my knee was unscathed. My leather and rubber pack boots have minor scraping on them.
    In the ER, my remaining garments were removed and I was whisked off for X-rays and a CAT scan, after I answered “yes” to whether or not I had lost consciousness. I think it was only for a very brief moment, but better safe than sorry. The ortho-surgeon was next in to see me, going into a bit more detail about the next steps. He then performed a “Quigley Reduction” on my breaks. He took a rolling IV pole and suspended my leg from it by the big toe using gauze wrap, then told me to let the full weight of my leg hang on it. While 2 aides steadied me and the pole, he applied more weight and worked my ankle until he was happy with the alignment. To say the pain was intense does not even come close. As the pain subsided and he applied a splint, it quickly occurred to me that my wrist was gonna get the same treatment. Yep. And it was just as intense.
    Surgery to install screws for my ankle and a plate for my wrist was scheduled for the next day(Monday). All went well, and I gained a new appreciation for the “magic button” they give you post op to self medicate with Morhpine.
    This all happened in Rockland County, NY, which is a good 4 hours from my home in southern New Hampshire. Simon Begler and Dick Roberts of the Ramapo MC made sure my truck was not towed and visited me several times over the next week. The real fun was calling my wife on Sunday with the bad news. After letting her vent for what seemed like 90 minutes, and saying “Yes Dear” often, we came up with a plan. She would come down on Tuesday with our oldest grandson. They would recover my truck and the KLR, and our grandson would head home Tuesday evening, while she stayed behind for moral support and to plan the next phase, meaning rehab and getting home.
    I spent the following week at Helen Hayes Rehab, where I got top notch care, and learned to use modified crutches to get around. Surrounded by others with spinal injuries and worse, I quickly realized how lucky I was, and how relatively minor my injuries are. My week there went quickly. My brother in law made the trip down to bring me back to NH. It was better to listen to him give me crap about his KLR, which is already repaired, than have my wife fret all the way home.
    It’s now Feb 29. I returned to my IT job on Feb 1, as I sit most of the day. NH issued me a temporary Disabled Parking Permit, good until June, and I can drive my Toyota Tundra. Hopefully, the casts come off this Friday, and I can begin my rehab. I’ve already got my registration in for the May Moto Giro! Vintage MX might hafta wait until next year.

    • bill bartasek
      | Reply

      yeah , a group of us arrived as you were being loaded in the ambulance while laughing . will we see you again for the next one ?

      • Bob
        | Reply

        Probably not for 2017. My ankle is doing well, while my wrist is coming along slowly. I have been riding my Yamaha Super Tenere and Honda Elite 250 to work and my KTM 520EXC off road. I even went to Canada in August for 2 days of Vintage off road racing. But I think I’ll sit out the next MNR to keep peace in my house! Bob

  3. Bing
    | Reply

    Nearing 100 of these events and boasts its ther longest running mc event in usa buy yet am unable to find any history of this event, strange indeed. BTW, why not erase the falling snow from the flier due to the fact even the slightest snow flurries gets the event moved to another date or canceled…

Leave a Reply