Even the best of us make an occasional error in judgment.
We've shared the work of motorcycle instructor Bret Tkacs before. Whether he's helping us improve our skills or telling us how to crash, it's clear that this guy knows his stuff. This makes it somewhat refreshing to see that even he can make a mistake, then make a video about it. Call it schadenfreude, if you like, but it makes me feel better to know that even an expert like Bret Tkacs can make a bad move that I probably would have, too.
The original purpose of the video was to show us how to get over a fallen tree across the trail in muddy conditions. He talks us through how he plans to do it, then shows himself doing it—and failing. He didn't even drop his BMW R 1200 GS, but now it's well and truly bogged down in the mud. Tkacs is woefully unprepared for such an eventuality with no recovery gear. All he has is his limited strength and his wits to extract the bike and get home.
Tkacs never stops being an instructor. The video changes gears and becomes about how to get your stuck bike out of the mud. He talks us through his entire thought process every step of the way. He tries some techniques that work. He tries some others that don't. Try not to think of this as learning "the one true way" to get your bike out of the mud. Instead, watch how he thinks through the situation, identifies the problem at every point in the process, and then figures out how to solve it. Every situation is different and will need these problem-solving skills to determine what will work for you, rather than just copying what he does.
In the end, Tkacs manages to shove the bike over a crest, down into a puddle with a solid bottom on the trail. Then he pivots the bike on the kickstand to point back in the direction he came. It's not a glamorous recovery, but it works, and he's able to get himself out of a bad situation. There's a lot to be said for that. Trust me.