Motorcycle rally returns to Presidio 

Photo by Hannah Gentiles for The International / Rafael Carrera leads the riders down River Road, just outside of Terlingua, on Saturday afternoon for the fifth annual River Run to The Post event, where seven bikes rode from The Trading Post in Presidio, down the scenic River Road to Study Butte and back.

PRESIDIO –– The sixth annual River Run to the Post was held last Saturday over Labor Day weekend at the Presidio Trading Post & Cantina. The motorcycle rally, which begins at the Trading Post, winds its way down FM 170, also known as River Road, all the way to Terlingua, at which point the bikers turn around and head back to Presidio.

To spice things up this year, the bike rally did what’s known as a “poker run” with a $15 entry fee. According to Hiram Carrera, whose father owns the Trading Post, as the bikers make their way down to Terlingua, they make a series of stops along the way. At those stops, the bikers each pick up a card from a playing deck. “At the end of the run, whoever has the best hand wins the pot,” he said. 

While Carrera doesn’t know what stops the bikers made along the way this year, he said that they usually frequent classic biker stops –– like bars and specific rest stops off the side of the road. “I honestly don’t know what stops they are going to take. It’s an all day thing. They’re going to leave at like 10 a.m. and they won’t be back until 6ish,” he said. 

The first River Run to the Post happened in 2016, right around the time Carrera’s dad opened the Trading Post. “There’s a handful of my dad’s customers that come to the bar regularly that are bikers. When we first did our grand opening, we decided to do a bike rally to celebrate,” Carrera said. 

The Trading Post did play host to the River Run in 2020, just on a much smaller scale. “Last year was just a small one, just like with a couple of my dad’s friends because of the pandemic and all that,” he said.

Photo by Hannah Gentiles for The International / Participants pull their final card from Arian Velazquez-Ornelas after the closing of the River Run to The Post event on Saturday afternoon.

This year, Carrera was expecting 40 to 50 riders to join in on the rally. He said that the biking scene has grown over the years with the discovery of the river road’s beauty. “Supposedly it’s one of the most scenic routes to cruise down on a motorcycle,” he said. “It’s really more about how much more popular that drive between Presidio and Lajitas has become. A lot more people have kind of found out about it.”

The day before the rally on Friday, the Trading Post hosted a social night at the post. Bikers were also invited to camp on the Trading Post’s grounds and all participants were given free food. “We provide breakfast in the morning, like breakfast burritos,” Carrera said.  

For Carrera, he’s just happy to host this rally in Presidio during Labor Day weekend. He said that even though there’s bigger events going on in Marfa, like the Marfa Lights Festival, that there’s still plenty to do in south county over the weekend leading up to the federal holiday.