View Single Post
Old 10-01-2012, 10:13 PM   #1
Joined: May 2012
Location: Leavenworth, WA- in the mountains!
Oddometer: 341
Why such big bikes on gravel/ dirt routes?

Why such big bikes on gravel/ dirt routes? Serious question, no disrespect to anyone and the ride that they enjoy.

My next goal is the Continental Divide Ride. I have been reading a lot of TRs etc. There is a lot of difficulty related to both lack of riding skill, and riding a big heavy loaded motorcycle on rough, slick, rutted dirt routes. I read about a lot of folks quitting, and a few also quit the WABDR per TRs on 'difficult' sections. I read time and again about riders on big motorcycles skipping sections that would just be fun on my little ride, even with a camp load. My little dual purpose motorcycle, from what I see, travels the gravel/ dirt routes as fast and probably faster than most- and with ease in riding it loaded. And riding my little moto is easy and fun.

In fact my ride with camp load weighs about as much as the liquid-cooled 250 dual sports.Those who have seen my posts know that I travel on a rig considered ridiculous (or other descriptor) by some. My ride is my '08 Honda CRF230L Adventure

Clearly I am very secure in myself and satisfied with what I ride Truthfully, my 230L earns it reputation as a 'dog' at least over 50 MPH. But on tight and gnarly, one may be surprised at the capability of my short little lightweight motorcycle.

So I have been also pretty interested to buy a WR250R for the CD- with the big gas tank added. I worry that my little 230L will be even a worse 'dog' in the Rockies The WR250R would handle great- my 230L suspension is limited, one does not want to mistake that they are on a real dirt bike and push it fast on the rough and jumping it is a horrible experience sometimes. Anyway, now I read about fuel pump failures on the WR250R, apparently now not the case on late models. But that is a much more complex machine than my much-criticized 230L. My 230L just runs and runs, not fast or powerful, but not much maintenance required, and pretty dependable and not subject to some of the damage in modern more complex bikes. And I got 73MPG on the 230L loaded on the WABDR! So, I am thinking, and realize the WR250R is not that much bigger than my 230L, WR250R would be more comfortable over 50MPH (++), better real suspension. But I know, after the WABDR, and the Naches Pass jeep trail loaded x 4 trips, my 230L would do the CD nearly as fast as a WR250, and probably faster and easier, and including the tough sections, than on a big moto. So, I ask myself, do I really need to spend $8k for the WR250R plus setup and etc when I can just haul my 230L to the CD and ride the CDR just fine, then ship it home?

OK, here is a chance for comments and catcalls. Interested in others ideas and perspectives. Thanks!

Oh, Edit to add- I rode a 1975 two-stroke GT750 Suzuki up the AK HWY when it was mostly gravel, on street tires with my frame backpack strapped on. Hauled ass, had fun. And I had two open class race bikes. So I understand but also know that my 230L privides just enough and no extra to smoothly travel gravel and dirt- actually safer than a quicker larger bike...

ADVNCW screwed with this post 10-01-2012 at 10:21 PM
ADVNCW is offline   Reply With Quote