My love of riding four-wheelers started at a young age. I have progressed over the years from riding little electric four-wheelers at three to riding a Honda 400x at fourteen. I have had many atvs over the years, but mind set has never changed, I love to them.
I got my first four-wheeler when I was three. It was a little blue electric ATV. I literally rode that four-wheeler till the wheels fell off. I went back and forth across the yard for hours at a time every day. Sometimes I would hit a tree or a bush but I would just back up, and keep on riding.
My second four-wheeler was a red 50cc Kymco. I got it when I was 4. One day, I had a friend over to my house to ride and play. He was riding my dirt bike and I was was on my four-wheeler. Before he got on my dirt bike, I thought I heard him say he had never ridden a dirt bike so while we were riding I was looking back at him to make sure he didn’t fall off or anything. Then, as soon as I turned around, the pasture’s barbed wire fence was about five feet from me. I swerved to avoid it but I came up on my two left side wheels and almost flipped. I put it back down on all four wheels, and as soon as I did, I pegged a fence post. I went flying over the handlebars and through the barbed wire. Luckily, I went between the bottom row and middle row. Thankfully, I only came out with a cut about 6 inches long from the barbs and a few bruises. I still have the scar to this day.
My third four-wheeler was a Japanese made 90cc. It was yellow and smaller than my 50cc but it would fly for a 90. It would go about 10mph faster than my 50. When I got it I was 7. This was the four-wheeler I learned to jump on. I had a little jump behind my house at the time. I would hit the jump wide open and get about a foot off the ground, which at the time I thought was a long way off the ground. I jumped the little lip over and over again. I broke the back end out of it two times because I jumped it so much and because the shocks in the back weren’t any count. When Highway 30 was being built, my grandfather and I took our four-wheelers to where they had dozed a flat strip for the road. We rode there all day. We were actually trespassing, but they didn’t catch us. It was a day I’ll never forget.
My fourth four-wheeler was a gray Kymco 150. I got it when I was 8. This four-wheeler was my mud riding four-wheeler. I blew a head mud riding one day because I got stuck and kept revving it up trying to get it out. I made a race track around the pond with this four-wheeler one year because the water got so low. I raced it for about a week and then it rained again. Another thing I learned how to do on this Atv was climb hills. I learned to climb hills on it when I was about 9. For about 3 months, that's all I wanted to do. I would ask my grandpa to take me across the road to the woods and let me climb hills. Some of the hills were way too big for me to climb so I just climbed climbed a few, which was a big accomplishment at the time.
My fifth four-wheeler was a Honda 250ex and I got it when I was 11. It was a black racing four-wheeler. It was on this machine that I became fully aware of my love for racing. It started when my older cousin, who used to race GNCC, started giving me tips about racing and about what he did when he raced. Every time he would tell me something about racing, it would get my adrenaline pumping. I would get anxious and would want to go try what he was telling me right then. It was also the four-wheeler that I learned how to wheelie on and climb bigger hills. It took me about a year and a half after I got my four-wheeler before I could wheelie it for long distances. I would practice for what seemed like hours at a time some days going back and forth across a straight strip of land at my house. The reason I wanted to learn how to wheelie was because my grandfather could wheelie really well and I was always jealous of his ability. So when I got a four-wheeler that was capable to do it, I practiced until I could do it.
The 250ex was also the four-wheeler that I took to ride at different places besides my house. Last year was the first year that I actually trailered my four-wheeler to public ATV trails. My first big ride was at Hawk Pride Mountain Offroad ATV park in Tuscumbia, AL. Out of all the places I have ridden, it was the most scenic. We pulled off the highway and drove right up the side of a mountain. At the top we would drove for about a mile to the back side of the mountain to unload our four-wheelers. At the top of the mountain we could see for miles across pastures and fields. It was a beautiful view. As soon as we unloaded, wet dropped off the back side of the mountain and rode through many trials. We climbed hills and rode through mud holes. It was almost dark by the time we trailered up to come home.
The second place I trailered my four wheeler was Barnyard Mud Boggers in Fulton, MS. It was probably the most fun place I have been to ride. There were more intermediate hills and trails that everyone could enjoy. We stayed at one spot for about 30 minutes just climbing different hills and watching other people climb bigger hills. There were also huge mud holes that my four-wheeler couldn’t handle. My cousin decided he would try one of the small ones but it turned out that the hole was deeper than he thought. He hit it and by the time he could stop he was already too deep to back out. The water was about two inches short of drowning his four-wheeler. It was almost a day ender and we had just gotten there. Later that day, we were riding down a trail and happened upon Coach Hicks. He was stuck so badly that we had to call a tractor down there to pull him out. The best spot there was on top of a huge hill. We rode up to the top and we could see the Tombigbee waterway. We could see miles down it.
The third place I trailered my 250ex was Bruton’s Branch in Savannah, TN. It was a place more for mud riding four-wheelers. We rode through a lot of creeks and I had to go around many mud holes. I was crossing a creek one time and just about drowned my four-wheeler. I watched a couple of people cross it and I told them I didn’t think I would make it. They convinced I would make it though, so I crossed and almost made it but I got to the other side and one of my back tire dropped off in a deeper hole. My pipe was touch the water so I pulled on my clutch and revved it up so I wouldn’t get water in my pipe. Luckily, one of the people I was riding with strapped his winch to my front bumper and dragged me out before waster got in my pipe. Almost every hill was too big for me to climb. There was even a hill there called The Widowmaker. It got its name because men would climb and and die climbing it which made their wives, widows. They had to shut the hill down because too many people died trying to climb it. On the other hand, there was a beautiful waterfall there. It was about 25-30 feet tall. I actually climbed up on top of it and I learned quickly that 25 feet is higher than you think it is when there is nothing in between you and a rock covered ground.
My sixth and most favorite four-wheeler was Honda 400ex and I got it last December. I got it early for Christmas because it was supposed to be raining the whole week of Christmas. I got it early so I could ride it before it started raining. The first time I rode it I was a little bit timid because of the huge horsepower increase between a 250 and a 400. My 250ex would top out at about 49-52 mph but my 400ex would top out at about 64-67 mph. But within a couple of days I was riding wheelies and racing it in the woods. I have never fully wrecked it before, but I have hit a few trees. One time, a couple of friends and I were racing at my friends house and I came of a hill to hot and couldn’t get stopped it time to turn. I saw it coming so I just took my hand off the handle bars so I wouldn’t break my hand or arm or something. I hit it so hard that it picked up my backend and turned me sideways across the trail and pinned me between two trees. Thankfully, I wasn’t injured and my four-wheeler wasn’t broken so I got a couple them to help me unpin it from the trees and I kept on racing. It is also the four-wheeler that had the best balance point as far a wheelying purposes. I could ride a wheelie it with one hand it is so easy.
My seventh four-wheeler and the one I have now is a Honda 400x. It’s the exact same four-wheeler as the 400ex, it’s just a newer model with different plastics. I have had the most trouble with this one. I have burned two sets of clutches out of it and I have only had it for two months. The person we bought it from lied to us about it. He also lied to us about the 30 day warranty he was going to give us. I brought it home and rode it for about thirty minutes and the clutches burned out. We called the man we bought it from and he said he would send us another set. Well, three weeks later, we finally got them in and it turned out that he only sent us half of what we needed so we had to use some of the burned up clutches to fill in what he didn’t send us. A day later, I made one loop the woods and brought it back and by the time I could get back to the house, they burned out again. We called the man we bought it from again and he never would answer the phone or reply to our texts. So we had to buy them ourselves this time. He finally replied to our text and said he would send us $100 for us to buy what we needed and that was 5 weeks ago and the money still hasn’t come in. After putting the second set of clutches in, it has run fine and hasn’t burned the clutches out. I’m going to hope that it stays that way. On this four wheeler I have hit several trees too. Just the other day, I was racing at the same place I hit a tree on my yellow 400ex and hit a tree but this time it was a little more serious this time. Once again I came around a corner to fast and lost control. I saw it coming and let go but this time it threw me over the handlebars and onto the ground in front of me. Thankfully, I was not hurt too bad and got up and kept racing. My handle bars did wind up being bent though.
My love of riding has not changed through the years. It is definitely my favorite hobby to do. I have had many different four-wheelers and even had trouble with some but my frame of mind hasn’t changed. I love to ride four-wheelers.