Words & photos: Pierre Robichaud
Glen Helen is the legendary sprawling motocross track that’s carved from the sun-baked hills outside of San Bernardino California. I enter the track, winding my way through a large modern MX event, past layers of modern bikes and high-end toy haulers. At the edge of the track, in the back hills, I come across some old pickups, a '70s shorty van and some vintage bikes lined up. I know that I’m at the right place: the Hell on Wheels Halloween Hillclimb. It’s an event I’ve wanted to come down south to see for many years but never made it.
If you’ve ever been to a Hell on Wheels race you know you’re in for a treat. This event is about having a good time above all else. It’s run fast and loose and winning is great but it’s not the reason you go. There are all types of bikes and riders, some in costume: from burritos on dual sports to The Purple One on a pull-start bike and some Marios and Luigis for good measure. Old Triumphs and newer Harleys blast up the hill kicking up dust that sticks to the faces of kids watching on BMX bikes. At the end of the day, there's nothing like a few cold ones with new friends while waiting for trophies. In times where we don’t agree on much here in the US, it feels good to come together for a common passion. It’s a bit of a time trip back to when everything seemed normal. I’m looking forward to more of the same.
See Pierre's Sideburn story from Dirt Quake USA