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Warrior's Society Counting Coup

There are important changes coming to the 2023 Vision Quest and Counting Coup.

The course will remain the same due to the Forest Service inaction in getting the traditional trails used in the event restored.

We will no longer keep time - this only encourages participants, especially those concerned about their times, to go too fast at unsafe speeds putting others on the trails at risk.

Co-Event Director Keith Parsons and I (Chris Vargas Co-Event Director) believe that the whole purpose of the events is to finish. 23 year ago when the Vision Quest was a Laguna Rads event I (Chris Vargas, founder of the Warrior’s Society) was warned by fellow RAD club member Dirk Maes that if I grew the event too big it would turn from a Grass Roots event to a Pro event - where the everyday guy gets no recognition - and I fear Dirk's prediction has come true.

It is not about coming in at 1st place, it is about the everyday guy who struggles to get training in while still working and putting his family 1st, not the Pro rider whose main concern in not finishing, but finishing in the top 20. It is about the everyday guy whose finish of the Vision Quest, or Counting Coup, will be a memory, and the pain they experienced, something they will never forget.

In our book, if you finish you are a winner - and I will do everything in my power to discourage pro’s from entering our events. It will return to its Grass Roots.

Counting Coup Shirt

Pictured is the breathable material (not cotton) event shirt, which will include text stating what event you participated with in.

We will also be selling a Pow Wow event jersey ($40).

date and location

Event Date: Saturday, April 15, 2023
Event Location: Santa Ana Mountains, Orange County, CA
Event Start: 5:00 AM - 6:30 AM

All those who were signed up for the 2022 event (even those who did not show) will have first chance to register for the 2023 Vision Quest, which will be limited to 200 participants and the Counting Coup limited to 100.

Registration for the 2023 Pow Wow will remain open until April 7th or when we run out of ordered event shirts.
The event fee for Counting Coup is $85

Register Now

All entry fees are non-refundable, non-transferable and non-deferrable. We have to plan well in advance and therefore cannot offer refunds. You may not give or sell your number to another individual. The entry fee for a 2023 event WILL NOT transfer to the 2024 event, no exceptions. This policy stays in effect whether you are injured, have unexpected business, a family emergency, etc. Sorry, there are NO exceptions.

additional info

Comps will only be given out to 10 year finishers, club members in good standing, notable event participants and sponsors who donate $1,500 in swag or more.

We will no longer keep time - this only encourages participants, especially those concerned about their times, to go too fast at unsafe speeds putting others on the trails at risk.

You will have the option to start anytime between 5:00 am and 6:30 am If you wish to start between 5:00 am and 5:45 am, you must pick up your packet before Saturday morning and have your wrist bands on ready to check in and start. We will allow you to start anytime you want from 5:00 am to 6:30 am - but as previously stated, if you start between 5:00 am and 5:45 am you must pick up your packet and wrist band before Saturday so we just have to check you in.

Those starting between 5:45 am and 6:30 am (you must leave by 6:30 am) can pick up their packet Saturday morning (or at a pre-Saturday packet pickup). No matter what time you start, you must still make the Aid Station #1 cut-off time of 10:00 am.

You are responsible if you collide with any trail user (as stated in the event release) and you will be DQ’ed. We had one participant collide with a Warrior’s Society club member on Black Star, resulting in the club member suffering a compound fracture of the wrist. You are not covered by our liability policy if this occurs. This participant faces a possible lawsuit for damages.

If the public reports to us that you are riding at an unsafe speed, you will be disqualified. Remember, this applies to both roads and trails.

course description

48+- miles, 9,100 +- ft. of elevation gain

1. Blackstar Canyon Road to the top of the Silverado Motorway – dirt fire road with many steep climbs.
2. Silverado Motorway to Aid Station – downhill, technical single track.
3. Up Maple Springs Road to Four Courners
4. Back along the main divide toward Black Star.
5. Down Black Star Canyon Road to the finish line

cut off times

10:00 AM at the Aid Station at the bottom of the Silverado Trail and Maple Spring Road.

12:00 PM at the Aid Station at the intersection of Maples Springs Road and the South Main Divide Road.

1:30 PM at Maple Springs Road and the Main Divide (4 corners) when returning from the peak and rejoining the Counting Coup course.

3:00 PM at the Main Divide Road and the Silverado Motorway.

Those not making the cutoff times will ride down Maples Springs Road/Silverado Canyon Road back to the Staging Area off of Black Star Canyon Road. The staging area will remain at the Black Star Staging Area off Black Star Canyon Road.

Those not making the 3:00 PM cutoff time will be shuttled back to the staging area.

If you do not make the cutoff times and refuse to return to the staging area you have violated the terms of your participation and the Warrior's Society will no longer responsible for your safety. Your emergency contact will be called and notified that they will be assuming all responsibility your safety.


Event registration
» Preparing for the event
» Video documenting the 2004 Pow Wow on YouTube

Contact: countingcoup@warriorssociety.org

Finishing Times:
2022, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006,
2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999, 1998

Read the 2018 event write-up.

Click here for the event photo gallery.

The main divide photo gallery can be found here.


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