Fun in the Sun, Mud and Snow

The Algonquin West ATV Club Spring Rally and Poker Run

The Algonquin West ATV Club Spring Rally and Poker Run at the Edgewater Park Lodge on Sand Lake in Kearney on April 26, 2014 is in the record books, and it was a great day!  We capped the event at 350 for various reasons, including the snow issues, the weather and the logistical challenges of conducting an even larger event. 

We sold out a week in advance and tickets were still selling like hotcakes!  We ended up with 363 riders plus volunteers, etc. which was 13 more than our previous event last year which had 350, much larger than any previous year.  When we went out eight days before the rally to check the trails and establish a route, we had no idea if we would be able to pull it off or not, as some of our trails still had two feet of snow in places, plenty of winching, and seriously evaluating the the viability of even attempting to conduct this event.

1 back of atver

Fortunately, the gods were relatively good to us with a fairly rainy and warm week, which cut the snow down a lot to more manageable levels, and we were able to get the job done without being forced to reschedule.

The Edgewater was sold out for this event in late 2013, and other area resorts also did very well.  The most impressive entrance ever made was this group with 13 bikes on one trailer, who arrived Friday for a full weekend of riding!

2 row of atvers

In the morning, warming up in the tent and preparing for the drivers meeting there was coffee and muffins for all, provided by Rickwards Polaris to enjoy during the registration process.

3 big scene

There were many, many very impressive bikes to see, but most impressive of all was when MBRP / The Garage of Huntsville showed up with four highly modified UTVs to ride, and ride them hard they did too!  See them all by following the link  to the gallery provided at the end of the article.

4 polaris utv

We actually got 1-2 cm of snow the night before, and it certainly was a crisp morning for sure, and a cool day with a smattering of rain here and there just to keep things interesting. That’s a part of riding, we’re all a fairly tough bunch and nobody seemed to mind too much.

5 line of atvs approaching
Quite a lineup at the beginning before people get more spread out as the day goes on.

We are very fortunate to have absolutely amazing scenery, countless lakes and rivers basically accessible only by ATV / UTV for all to enjoy – if you can get there, because many of our trails are just outside the western boundary of Algonquin Park, and the terrain is much the same as in the park.  This is a gorgeous spot among many to stop for a picnic, or even to camp out.

6 couple of guys and atvs

This is the first checkpoint where a poker card is drawn, and there is an opportunity for a break to warm up by the fire, relax a bit, meet each other, and allow the bikes to spread out a bit.

7 atv traffic

After the checkpoint, riders encountered their first of the more challenging mudholes, (yes, there is a way around almost all of them, you can see one taking the detour) this is one of several four up UTVs that were there this year.

8 utv in water and mud

We had three breakdowns before lunch; this guy somehow lost a brand new wheel bearing, however he was able to crawl along to the canteen where we managed to bring all three of them home to the Edgewater.  At least he’s still smilin’!

9 thumbs up

The BBQ lunch at the canteen is a very popular spot, many were there for up to two hours just enjoying themselves and chatting with fellow bikers!

10 canteen

This cab must be nice on a cold or rainy day. We haven’t seen this before – I’m not too sure about excessive mud, however, that could be a bit challenging.

11 covered utv

Doug and Darcie, the triker brothers, have been to four of our events, and have already reserved their waterfront Edgewater cottage for next year’s event. They get through the mud better than some of the 4x4 bikes!  Video is also available in the gallery linked at the end.

12 approaching water

13 scenic river
One of the many scenic rivers in our area to enjoy.
14 yellow checkpoint
One more poker card at the second checkpoint and plenty more mud to enjoy along the way.
15 tent dinner
A fabulous dinner prepared by the Edgewater staff, a beer perhaps, and time to relax after a hard day’s ride.

After dinner everyone gets to relax a bit before the final poker tally, first prize won by a one card higher flush over second place.  Then there were many other prize giveaways, draws, 50/50, etc. for all to participate in.

16 tent scene

We do hope you enjoyed this look at out 2014 Spring Rally, and we would love to see you at another of our events, club rides, or just to see you out on our trails. Just please remember to buy a membership or day pass, that funding helps maintain the trails we work so hard on for you to enjoy!  Come on out! 

To find out more about our club and trails, visit us at for all the info, check out the Edgewater Park Lodge, and if you enjoyed the photos and want to see more of them, including video’s, visit our photo gallery.

Click here to learn more about ATV events coming up in your area 

About Adam Columbus

Adam is the former webmaster for the Algonquin West ATV club webmasters. He lives north of Huntsville, Ontario with his family. He is also an ex-business owner from the GTA who is now semi-retired.

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