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DVD Review: Hard Miles

  Posted at 01:56:05 PM
  File under  Movie Review Product Review Tips/How To Travel
  Author: Mike Werner
  Location: Normandy, France

Iron Butt Open link in a new window needs no introduction, but for those three people who stumbled upon this site by chance, here's what it is. Iron Butt is a bunch of motorcycle lunatics (said in a positive way) who ride motorcycles. It's that simple. The only difference is that they ride for a very, very, long time. The rally lasts 11 days, and the contestants ride 11,000 miles during that time, so 1,000 per day, 11 days in a row. Since you've got to stop to tank, make photographic proof that you have reached a specific point, and you've got the eat and drink, you can calculate that you don't get much sleep. Click here for more information (Wikipedia) Open link in a new window.

Click for bigger version of DVD Hard Miles
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The DVD "Hard Miles" Open link in a new window documents the 2007 Iron Butt rally. The first Iron Butt rally was held in 1984 with only 10 riders circumnavigating the four corners of the USA. The 2007 edition of the rally had 2000 applications and 100 riders were accepted. The rally is not a speed race, ie, you need to stick to legal speed limits. It's like an enormous scavenger hunt with clues hidden all over the USA.

The DVD shows you all the work that goes into the rally, finding out which bonus points you want to pick up, route planning, where you will be staying (for a few hours sleep), etc.

The Hard Miles documentary interviews many of the contestants, sometimes a tad too many IMHOIn My Humble Opinion. The contestants come from all over (even outside the USA), and from all walks of life.

One thing you do pick up from the video, you need gadgets. Almost all motorcycles had electronic gadgets, some even had onboard computers with touchscreen. One contestant had nothing, not even a GPS.....

If you're planning to participate one day, make sure you bring a portable computer to plan your itinerary. And make sure you are 100% comfortable with using the software. You'll need it...

If you ever get the video, look at the eyes of the contestants after day 6..... sleep deprivation??

As for the DVD, the quality is quite good, lots of catchy background tunes. Image quality is also good, and they use animated graphics, many coming from Google Earth.

The DVD is not for people who want to watch motorcycles running around, or learn more about the sites to go and visit. It's not a Long Way Round/Down. But if you're interested in the Iron Butt rally, foremost if you plan to participate in the future, this video explains a lot about the works, planning and all efforts required. Even if you're just interested in what the Iron Butt is, the video will interest you.

The video also shows you that having a comfortable motorcycle, like a Honda Goldwing, does not mean that you can win or even finish. In fact, third place went to a Harley Sportster....

Click here to read more about it and to order it Open link in a new window
Price:  US$ 50.

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