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Old 08-29-2011, 08:59 PM   #76
GotMojo?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simonpig View Post
Love the 3.1 gallon tank. I carry 2 liter MSR fuels bottles 1 at each side of the saddlebags. Another inmate Machtig has a Safari 3.7 and never need anymore on his TAT trip. I figure 3.1 + the extra .5 is close enough for me to not need the bigger tanks.
That's probably what I'll go with. I'm gonna leave the exhaust and engine stock like you did, that way fuel mileage is at it's max. I know when I put the exhaust, filter, and fuel controller on my WR250X, gas mileage took a hit.

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Old 08-29-2011, 11:00 PM   #77
simonpig OP
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Joined: Nov 2006
Location: NYC
Oddometer: 1,061
08/28/11 (Sunday)

Maintenance Day. Woke up today and was feeling lazy. In the afternoon, headed over to Walmart and got some Mobil 1 Synthetic 10w40 since they didn't have the very uncommon 20w40.

I ordered some tires and had them waiting for me in MS. After a couple of hours, I had fresh oil in the bike and a new rear tire. No drama, just a little elbow grease.

Spent the rest of the evening watching the Southwick Motocross Nationals on youtube. Awesome race with Dungey coming back to 7th, 1 minute and 50 seconds after the gate dropped.

Before:
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After... so fresh.

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Old 08-30-2011, 08:26 AM   #78
simonpig OP
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Joined: Nov 2006
Location: NYC
Oddometer: 1,061
8/29/11 (Monday)
Daily Mileage: 308
Average speed: 33 mph

My pops woke me up today, and had some breakfast before packing up and heading out. Todays ride took me through end of the MS hill country and into the Delta which is super flat and the levee roads.

Paris, MS

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Talahatchie County, MS

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Natural Light seems to be the local favorite. Saw boxes and case strewn throughout several counties.

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Some interesting buildings along the way

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Kudzoo is commonplace in MS

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Through the the Mississippi Delta...

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Click on below video for a little taste of the Delta.



The tallest object there in the Delta

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An old building in a town just before crossing into Arkansas

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Heading over the bridge into Arkansas, I see the Isle of Capri Casino and hotel, which is one of the recommended hotels. Once I get across the bridge into Helena, Arkansas, the scenery and atmosphere starts to feel not on depressed and impoverished, but also a little bit scary. The bars on on the gas station windows are telltales. I gas up and get on the road as soon as I can to get away from these bad vibes.

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Arkansas, at least close the river, isn't very nice at all. I was riding long stretches of farmland roads, and there was a TON of dragonfly. There were areas of lowlands that were slightly flood with creek water from irrigating the fields. I'm happy it wasn't raining becuase there was a ton of dried out ruts through some sections. Overall, not scenic at all.

I hit a swampy water crossing which I was happy to turn around and reroute. It was stinky stagnant water, and though I could see where the water ended, I've had enough experience to understand that I'd rather not get my boot dirty on this one.

Most of the first half of Arkansas consist of straight gravel farmland roads. One annoyance is the dust that is kicked up if you happen to be behind an automobile. At the end of the day, Arkansas started to look nicer. The roads and scenery become more inviting.

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At around 7, I stop for the night in Bebee, AR at the Days Inn.

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There was pool so I took a swim and then walk over to the waffle house next door for dinner. Tomorrow, I hope to make it to Oklahoma, I'm making pretty good time each day, so if I get up early enough, I think it's possible.

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Observation: Going from Semi synthetic Castrol Act-evo to Mobil full synthetic really made a noticeable difference. The engine seems to run smooth with less vibes? Not sure if its the function of refreshed oil, or that the synth actually made a difference in smoothing it out?

Also, the improved traction of the new rear tire is great.

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Old 08-30-2011, 03:42 PM   #79
Abenteuerfahrer
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Great report....wished that I had the wherewials and finish the TAT 2 months ago....ahem, I bailed! Thanks for taking me long. Question: what's with the Isle of Capri ??..too rough; thievery??...unsafe?? Just curious as I might try again next year.
Is Oklahoma your mid point till next year or are you going whole Hog?

You wrote:

"Observation: Going from Semi synthetic Castrol Act-evo to Mobil full synthetic really made a noticeable difference. The engine seems to run smooth with less vibes? Not sure if its the function of refreshed oil, or that the synth actually made a difference in smoothing it out?"

Why manufacturers are using the word "synthetic" bogs my mind. Synthetic oils are in fact still Dino oils but are modified chemically.... to alter the molecular structure of the oil. Dino has a mixture of molecules( large, med, and small). While with synthetics the molecules are in consistent uniform size (whether all small or large) thus less friction. Your semi Castrol synthetuc has a mixture of both molecules(50/50). Synthetics cost more because it requires further processing to meet the criteria. Synthetics in fact do have higher shear properties.


Cheers...

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Old 08-30-2011, 08:23 PM   #80
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Oregon, dude.... I'm going for broke.

I'm sure the Isle of Capri Hotel is fine. From my personal experience, I eastern part of Arkansas gives off bad chi, feng shui, juju... whatever you call it, starting with Helena, Arkansas just across the river. My ride yesterday started around 80 miles East of the casino`, so I had a lot more riding to do. Todays ride was a redeeming one for Arkansas.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abenteuerfahrer View Post
Great report....wished that I had the wherewials and finish the TAT 2 months ago....ahem, I bailed! Thanks for taking me long. Question: what's with the Isle of Capri ??..too rough; thievery??...unsafe?? Just curious as I might try again next year.
Is Oklahoma your mid point till next year or are you going whole Hog?

You wrote:

"Observation: Going from Semi synthetic Castrol Act-evo to Mobil full synthetic really made a noticeable difference. The engine seems to run smooth with less vibes? Not sure if its the function of refreshed oil, or that the synth actually made a difference in smoothing it out?"

Why manufacturers are using the word "synthetic" bogs my mind. Synthetic oils are in fact still Dino oils but are modified chemically.... to alter the molecular structure of the oil. Dino has a mixture of molecules( large, med, and small). While with synthetics the molecules are in consistent uniform size (whether all small or large) thus less friction. Your semi Castrol synthetuc has a mixture of both molecules(50/50). Synthetics cost more because it requires further processing to meet the criteria. Synthetics in fact do have higher shear properties.


Cheers...
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Old 08-30-2011, 11:23 PM   #81
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Joined: Nov 2006
Location: NYC
Oddometer: 1,061
8/30/11 (Tuesday)
Daily mileage: 274 miles
Overall average: 30.6

Got on the road today at 10:30. Yesterday the road in Arkansas started looking up at the end of my ride… and so the good vibes continue. The first part of the ride consisted of rural gravel roads through pretty countryside… some of which was covered in this fantastic yellow wildflower. Like it so much, I even took a closeup of it.

In Romance, Arkansas

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Delightful yellow flowers.

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(angus) Beef! It's whats fer dinner.

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In Scotland, Arkansas, I stop into a gas station to fill up and get lunch and on the wall was a framed photo entitled, ”TAT, Tennessee to SFO, 2010” There was a montage of pictures of dudes next to motorcycles ( I think they 80s/90s Hondas and Kawasaki road bikes)and doing water crossings. I asked Tina, the woman preparing my lunch if she knew the guys in the pictures. She said they stopped in last year, when the gas station first opened… then a little later they sent the framed picture to share their adventure. Maybe these guys are on ADV.

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Lunch YUMMM

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After my delicious lunch, the ride takes me into the Ozark National Forest. This is the best ridings so far of the trip.

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The forest roads would wind up and down the mountain with switchbacks and occasionally would open up into a forest “highway” where I went WFO for a bit (with my gearing lower and the lack of traction offroad, this really only mean around 65-70 mph).

Up on the mountain top. The plane! The plane!

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Cool. WPA marker from 1939.

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I've seen this on another TAT post... whatever.. isallgood.

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That was all good fun, but as the day wound down, so did my water supply and my gasoline. The sky also started looking not so hot… I thought I might be caught on the mountain during the rain. After 20 miles with the gas light on, I finally make it down to a town and filled up. It started raining every so lightly as well during my ascent, but ended shortly after.

And so with a full tank and camelbak, I was continue on to the next leg which was Warloop Road. I remember hearing hoopla about the difficulties with this part, so I asked a local on a crotch rocket who was coming up from behind me. He said it wasn’t bad. A pickup truck coming the opposite direction stop and the old man driving says, “that road is really rough down there. Be careful…. You can see it on youtube.” After thanking them for there insight, I continue down Warloop.

Its not that bad. It is rough, but on the not so heavy WRR, I was able to go through it trials style feet on the pegs, picking my lines carefully through the rough cannonball sized rocks strewn about larger embedded rocks… If I were here a couple of years ago, I definitely would’ve been stressing, but I’ve been putting the WRR through its paces and on some pretty rocky rides in through the Berkshires, PA, and upstated NY, so I felt prepared and knew what I and the machine were capable of.

At around 7pm, I make it to the Alma Days Inn. Go across the street to the Red Rooster Bistro and order a ton of food and then here we are… enjoy the photos.

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Old 08-31-2011, 09:27 PM   #82
fotobo
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Enjoying your ride report. We finished the CDR today, now I have more time to keep up with your ride report.
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:34 PM   #83
simonpig OP
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How was it? and how do you rate it vs. TAT? I'm in Blackwell, OK right now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fotobo View Post
Enjoying your ride report. We finished the CDR today, now I have more time to keep with your ride report.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:17 AM   #84
simonpig OP
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8/31/11 (Wednesday)
Daily mileage: 369
Overall average: 36.4 mph

I’m firing on all cylinders when it comes to packing up. Got my routine down and I’m a rocket out of the hotel.

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It was really hot and today. I was sweating even at speed. Definitely was trying to keep hydrated. Drank my whole camelbak before the first gas stop.

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Towards the Arkansas -- Oklahoma border, I was flying down a straightaway, and I guess I was spacing out, but a downhill turn took me by surprise and while in a dirt lean while going hot into a left hand corner, I hit the rocky berm and fall over to the right of the bike. My knees a little sore, but the d30 Klim knee armor did its job absorbing the hit. Nothing hurt, bike is ok, and I continue on.

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During the lunch stop at a gas station, I briefly chat with Larry, who’s going east to Tennessee. He’s looked hotter than I did in his gear.. Vanson vented suit. Props to him for the ATGATT.

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Originally when I was thinking about doing the TAT, I thought I might skip Oklahoma because it was so straight and gridded, but towards to the end of the day, I hit the a couple of Wildlife Management Prairie Areas which are amazing serene, peaceful and beautiful. The roads throughout that section for the most part, do not have fences to the left and right. I felt really close to the land. The hills were rolling and there was a section where cows were just around me unfenced. It was more cerebral experience, something I couldn’t really capture in pictures. The ride and landscape… Everything is getting bigger. I get the feeling the more out west and remote I get, the more cerebral.

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Old 09-01-2011, 12:18 AM   #85
simonpig OP
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A raw video of western arkansas ride:


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Old 09-01-2011, 01:54 AM   #86
SR1
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Enjoying this quite a bit, keep it up.
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Old 09-01-2011, 10:57 PM   #87
simonpig OP
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9/1/11
Daily mileage: 390 mph
Overall average 39.5 mph

Watching the morning news as I eat my continental breakfast of waffles, the temperature was supposed to hit 104 degrees today.. Better fill up one of my platypus bottles. After feasting, I holeshotted out of the hotel : ) and am on the road at 10:30.

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The midday, high noon riding is a matter of getting comfortable, settling in and making sure I drink plenty of water. The landscape is very open and though the road is pretty much a straightaway, the road sometimes blends in with the landscape which is cool.

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Around noon, the gas light comes on, and so far, I haven’t been concerned… usually just let it hit about 15 miles and then, I punch in the “Find gas services” menu on the Garmin to see where the closest station. Well, the gas station was 23 physical miles away, and I already had 23 miles with the orange gas light… This is going to be interesting. I have 2 liters of backup fuel, so I’m ready.

At the 37.5 mile mark on reserve (151 miles total), the bike starts to stutter going up and down hills. I immediately stop and empty both fuel bottles into the tank. After 20 miles I roll into the gas station. Looks like I’m getting about 50 mpg average.

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At the gas station, got a footlong subway steak sandwich and a caramelo.

After a full belly, hydration, and tank full of gas, I push on. My favorite parts of Oklahoma are the wide open range sections that curve and twist, and are full of cows and other animals. The riding surface of Oklahoma ranges from old ass torn up blacktop to red silty sand to brown silty dirt to light yellow sand. Sometimes, I feel like I just hit the desert and it then it would revert back to what I’m used to.

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I’ve seen TAT reports in Oklahoma where it was wet and the brown silt turns to sticky mud making forward progress almost impossible. I’m thankful, it has been dry, thus far.

At around 5:15 I hit the Liberal, Kansas stop, but its early so I push on. I enjoy riding as the sun goes down mostly because its cooler my self-imposed cutoff time is at 7:45ish.

Had to stop to load up the rest of the OK tracks from my computer and I meet Steve. He stop behind me in his truck and asked me if where I was going and if I needed directions. He noted that theres a bunch of guys always coming by there since it was his neighborhood, and I confirm that most everyone who comes by are TAT riders. He recommended I stop in Black Mesa because it was scenic out there and good for dirtriding.. I'm gonna check the trail and see how close it is.

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After pushing for an extra 110 miles, I get to Boise City, OK and check into the Townsman motel. Its not dangerous here, but I ask the motel owner and he says its cool if I push the bike into my room. Good thing, because, I spy that the countersprocket nut is loose. Immediately, I tighten it the best I can and smash the lock nut some more to make sure it doesn’t back out.

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Old 09-01-2011, 11:11 PM   #88
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Short self portrait video riding Oklahoma.
Click on image to be taken to video.


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Old 09-02-2011, 07:48 AM   #89
fotobo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simonpig View Post
How was it? and how do you rate it vs. TAT? I'm in Blackwell, OK right now.
The CDR was great. I really enjoyed it. As far as rating it against the TAT, that's hard to do. I enjoyed them both a lot. I think the riding on the CDR was overall a little easier than the TAT, no deep sand. The only areas that could be considered difficult was Fleecer ridge, which is a steep rocky uphill or downhill depending on your direction of travel, and a couple of hills in New Mexico. New Mexico would have been very difficult if it rained, but we were lucky in that respect. The CDR was more scenic. You will just have to go do it and judge for yourself.

Looks like you are making good time and I can tell that your riding skills have improved a lot. Also you are doing a good job on the ride report. I know how difficult it is to do a live RR. I am really enjoying it and looking forward to the rest.

We are home now. Got here last night, so I now have a real keyboard instead of the tiny iphone. We cut the last 100 miles off the ride because we got the word that a good friend and old riding buddy of ours had passed away and we wanted to get back for the funeral. From what we have heard the last part is just straight pavement to the border anyway.

Have to go get ready to go to the funeral. There is going to be a motorcycle parade, lead by the deceased's son to the services. We plan to ride our bikes, still dirty from the CDR in the parade. I think Jack would appreciate that.
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:52 AM   #90
meijer's trails
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WOOOOOO HOOOOOO!! Keep it up! Thats the best looking hotel room!(with a wr INSIDE)

Man im getting goosebumps reading your reports!! I was all worried when you were down like" oh no simonpig is down!!" but whew hes ok

Good luck ! Go for broke!!
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