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Old 12-10-2009, 10:25 AM   #61
BigT
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Fantastic pics, Q!

One question... What GPS are you using? I'm in the market for a replacement for my Quest, and that one looks pretty nice.

-T
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Old 12-10-2009, 02:37 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigT
Fantastic pics, Q!

One question... What GPS are you using? I'm in the market for a replacement for my Quest, and that one looks pretty nice.

-T
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The best of the best of the best, Sir!

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Old 12-10-2009, 02:57 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by Ice
I followed your journey across the Trans America Trail and am now tagging along with you down the Continental divide. I am sure not getting much accomplish at home or work because of it... I have a question about your photo's.

The size of the photo's on the screen are perfect for maximum viewing. You can really get a feel and perspective for the area that you are traveling. What camera are you using? The sharpness and the clarity are very good. Does it have a special feature to reduce the camera motion while moving(picture stabilization). I'm gonna bet it is waterproof and also shock proof huh?

Thanks for the time and effort to entertain us.

Craig
Hello Craig.

I'll be the fisrt to admit... Modern 'point and shoot' cameras are amazing.

I used to shoot 35mm film. Then I got into small digital cameras.

Now:
I'm using an Olympus StylusTough 6000.
It features Image stabilization. It is also waterproof, freezeproof and shockproof.
I have a macro I use, set for wide angle (28mm), and high shutter speed.

I have a backup lanyard around my neck.
All I have to do is take the camera out of my pocket with my left hand, push the power button, and then push the shutter button right next to it to take a picture (or video), and keep riding. It can all be done one handed.
After a while it becomes second nature, like shifting the bike.

All the photos were taken at 10 Meg resolution and downloaded to Photobucket at 17" screen resolution. Original images are about 2 Meg each. (All total TAT + CDT + 18 Megs of pictures.)

So using the afore mentioned technology - all the photgraphs taken while moving have bit of a blur at the edges, but the focus is crisp and sharp. I wanted to capture the feeling of moving, yet have a clear image.

Thanks for noticing.
I'm becoming somewhat of a one man camera turret mounted on a motorcycle.

Let me know if you have any other questions or suggestions.
Q~
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Old 12-10-2009, 03:01 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Questor
I'm becomig somewhat of a one man camera turret mounted on a motorcycle.
I like that !
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Old 12-10-2009, 03:09 PM   #65
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WOOT!!
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Old 12-10-2009, 03:35 PM   #66
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Very good so far, cannot wait for more.
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Old 12-10-2009, 05:32 PM   #67
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Really nice stuff Questor

Excellent ride report, you're livin it. Where from CT??? SE Conn here.
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Old 12-10-2009, 06:49 PM   #68
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Great RR Q The cdt from Pinedale--Rawlins was one of my favarites also. Having antelope run along side of you @ 45mph is a real kick!!! Really enjoying the ride along

Scott
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Old 12-11-2009, 05:56 AM   #69
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Great RR . Thanks for taking the time to post so many great pics.

This is bringing back some good memories. I did the CDT in September 08 on my 990ADV and it was great fun. I had a fair bit of rain in certain parts (seems to be a recurring theme with my rides - see this years TAT RR), and it certainly made some of the trail more interesting.

Good luck with the rest of the trip!

T.O
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Old 12-11-2009, 06:25 AM   #70
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Day 6: Thursday August 20th, 2009

I was on the road by 8:00am, headed to Steamboat Springs.


Within an hour I was there. I wanted to stop at the Big Agnes Gear Store. I needed three more tent pegs to replace some of the ones I had broken trying to pound them into the rock hard ground our evening after riding the White Rim Trail in UT.


These guys are great folks who make great gear, and stand behind their product.
MotoAdventureGal and myself have been using their equipment for several seasons now: For the TAT and CDT - "Camp Snuggly" consisted of: SeedHouse 3 UL tent (3lbs), Fishhawk 30 degreed down sleeping bags (2 lbs), and full lenght 2" thick insulated inflatable pads (1 lb).
We have become spoiled - even Ms. "Princess Camper" no longer complains about camping night after night (usually).

So I strongly encourage you to check out Big Agnes Gear...
( Shameless plug 'off' )

While in town, I decided to get breakfast.


It was yummy, and I was in a great mood. While eating, I received a call from MotoAdventureGal, she said she was able to find me a place indoors to sleep at the AMA event. (I was planning on boondocking in the National Forest nearby...)
Everything was falling into place perfectly.

So with a full belly, and good thoughts in my head, I rode the CDT south out of Steamboat Springs. Another awesome day.

The road was nice. But there are a lot of things to be cautious of...


While riding, I see something about 1/4 mile ahead. I slow down, and shift into neutral, and just roll forward, camera at the ready...
And I see this fuzzy little guy!!!

See him on the right side of the road? So cute!
He walked into the brush, and I quietly rolled past.

After crossing a ridge, we drop down into a high pass.


I recognized this building from other Ride Reports.




Right around the corner was this water crossing. I had see this too in other Ride Reports. Didn't look bad compared to some of the stupid stuff I had ridden before.


Yeup, no problem at this level, but I could see how this could get wider and deeper quickly.


For a half mile the trail links up with pavement, but then jumps off onto this dirt road on the right.
But I see this sign...


Those dates cover today the 20th...
Well I've been ignoring signs for the past 10,000 miles, why change now.
I proceed down the road.


And go in quite a ways.


A couple of steep switchbacks bring us out up here.


Looks like we are on the North side of the Colorado River near Radium.
I know this area! I was back here earlier this summer when I was in Colorado for a week.

So I follow the road down to the river.
But as I get near town I see this.


And this.


Yeup. That sign back up on the road was real.
The foreman won't let me cross. Says they're almost done replacing the ties with new concrete ones, but they won't be done till tomorow.
The Foreman also says he saw some other guys on Dirt Bikes earlier that day, and they found a way around because he saw them on the other side of the river a few hours later.

I check with the GPS. Well, I might be able to go towards State Bridge, and cross there. I try and the road ends at a house.
The only other way out is 20+ miles back the way I came...
I decide to wait...
I find a shady spot, take off my gear, and have an apple.
I figure these guys will eventually go home for the night.

After about 30 minutes the Foreman comes over.
We start talking about my bike and my trip.
I tell him I've been on the road for almost two months, camping at night, and riding dirt trails, the TAT and the CDT. I tell him that this evening I was supposed to see my girlfiriend who I had not seen in weeks. I told him how I had been looking forward to a hot shower, and a warm soft bed.
But I guess I'll be a day late...

Next thing I know, my bike is on the other side of the tracks.

(I promised not to tell anyone how I got across, but lets just say it "flew over the tracks".)

Then the high speed road between State Bridge and Kremmling.
Stopping to look down into Gore Canyon.


This is where the railroad construction crew was replacing the tracks and ties. Apparently it's a very dangerous section of line. In fact, just the week before, one of the construction machines was destroyed by a large boulder that came off the mountain, stopping work for almost a week.
I used to whitewater kayak here almost 20 years ago. (I was a crazy kid back then...)

Past Kremmling, headed towards Freemont Pass.


The forests here have been hit hard by that invasive bettle.
When this becomes a forest fire, look out.


On our right we see the worlds largest Molybenduim mine's tailing pool retaining wall.


And the toxic lake behind the retaining wall.


Crossing the pass, I see my destination for the night. Somewhere down there is Keystone CO.


I ride down into the valley below and head to the AMA event.


The place was infested with motorcyclists.
I guess that's Ok, because I'm one too, but still it was a shock to see so many people after being alone for so long.
I see a familiar landmark and take my VIP parking spot.


When I parked here, that KTM 950 Adventure was not there.
But that's another story...

Stats for the day:
Approx 220 miles.

I did not write down GPS data...
I was 'busy'.

Q~
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Old 12-11-2009, 06:35 AM   #71
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I agree Q,
A night in a BA sleeping bag is terrific. Cant beat that slip-in system. However, my blood runs thin, I have a Storm King 0 degree, with a Dual core insulated slipped in !
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Old 12-11-2009, 07:06 AM   #72
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I agree Q,
A night in a BA sleeping bag is terrific. Cant beat that slip-in system. However, my blood runs thin, I have a Storm King 0 degree, with a Dual core insulated slipped in !
Good gear makes all the difference.
I really do like the Big Agnes stuff, and their staff.
The second qustion question from them after I told them about my trip was, "How's your gear holding up?"

And when I told them I needed new tent pegs, they gave me new ones for free if I gave them the broken ones for recycling.

By the way Mr. Pilot.
I noticed you have an F800 named Panzer.
I've got a KTM 950 ADV named Tiger.
Perhaps they will get a chance to meet someday.

More Ride Report to come.
It just takes a while to upload and resize all these large pictures.

Q~
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Old 12-11-2009, 07:58 AM   #73
bigdon
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NNNNNNNNNNNNN!

Thanks for going the extra mile for us! It is for us isn't it?
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Old 12-11-2009, 08:23 AM   #74
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Great ride report!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Questor
Some sections of the trail were high speed dirt roads, other sections were rough double track, but all of it could be done in a Subaru with decent tires.
I am guessing from this comment that you steered clear of both Lava Mountain (between Helena and Basin) and Fleecer Ridge (Between Butte and Wise River)? Both very rideable on a DRZ, but maybe a handful for a Subaru (or big GS/Strom/etc).
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Old 12-11-2009, 08:58 AM   #75
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August 21 - 24th: AMA event

MotoAdventureGal was working at the AMA event as a Ride Leader for BMW.
We had a comfortable place to stay, and I got a chance to get cleaned up.

But aside from seeing my Sweetie again , I also got to demo motorcycles...

Friday and Saturday were pretty busy, as a lot of riders were out for the weekend. Occasionally a BMW would not be signed up for, and I could ride the demo loop. I rode most of the BMW fleet those two days, several times.
K1300 GT. Ooohhh!
R1200 GSA. My "Beastie".
R1200 GS Still a great all-around bike
F800 GS. Not as good all around as I was hoping
F650 GS Can't beleive this was my first bike - nice at the time.

In between BMW demo rides, I was able to schedule some demo rides on various other brands for Sunday, when things were not so busy.

But when things were busy in Keystone, I took to the hills to see what I could see.
Up the Valley, the paved road disapears and becomes a dirt track and takes us to the town of Montezuma. The road gets smaller but continues.


At an intersection, I take the steep left. It was tricky getting traction to get moving again.


Going up more, following the ridgeline.


And who do I meet at the summit?




Timer shot. The goat is obviously used to people.


Looking North. Some sick trails back there...


Panorama shot.


The 'ol DRZ - without all the luggage.


I rode back down to "civilization" and once again felt unsettled by all the people. Just too many objects moving around...
I picked up a couple of cold beers and went back to the Condo.

I had just had an ADVrider Dual Sport Experience.
I had taken a motorcycle off the frequently traveled roads, and went a little beyond where more people turn back, and was rewarded with a very special moment. Me and the Goat, enjoying the moment on top of 12K foot mountains.

Sunday was my "Demo Day"
I had made all the arrangements and was going to try out many different types of motorcycles today. So I eagerly put on all my gear, and went to the demo area.

First ride:
2009 Harley Davidson Fat Boy.


It was an interesting ride. I had a hard time getting my motocross boots under the shift lever to downshift. 900cc motor, heavy bike, unique riding position. Easy to ride. Good for highway cruising. Well now I can say I rode a Harley.


Yeup. Dual Sport ATGATT on a Harley!

Now that we're warmed up, and haven't dropped an 800lb cruiser, lets head over to Ducati.


Before I was into motorcycles, I was into cars.
In my opinion, Ferrari makes the finest automobiles in the world.
(This is just my opinion - you may have your own, and youre entitled to it - in your own thread.)
I think they are a wonderful blend of hand crafted artisanship, and brute force. I love they way they look. I love the way they sound.
I've been fortunate enough to have paddock passes for the Imano Grand Prix, and I've felt my soul get stirred by these vehicles.
I even broke the rules and touched the car. I could not help it.


In my mind if Ferrari made motorcycles, they would be called Ducati.
In my opinion, there is also no finer example of a super bike than those made by Ducati.

And the finest motorcycle made by Ducati is this.




If you don't knw what this is, then there's no way I could tell you how special this motorcycle is. I get emotional just thinking about it.

I'll just show you pictures instead.






The sign said "Do Not Touch" , but I touched it anyway.
I might never get the chance again in my lifetime.

So after getting myself back under control, it was demo time.
Looky!




I've always wanted to know how these things ride. Now I get my chance!


The demo ride loop is about 20 miles long. Some mellow 50 mph, some semi twisty backroad (45 mph), some interstate (80 mph), mellow open stretch back to demo lot.

Well at the first stop sign, I get left with the chase rider.
The rest of the group takes off at 50.
Cars pass, there's an opening in the flow of traffic, and I go through the gears trying to catch up with the group. 90 mph before I looked down at the spedo. Oh...

My GSA does 90 mph, but you feel like your inside a prop driven airplane.
The Ducati makes you feel like you are standing on the wing.
It's quick, it's numble, but it's not scary.
Eveything felt controled and balanced, and felt like it would be that way at all speeds. Nice little package for $12K

I left the demo ride puzzled.
Where was the "oh my god" feeling?
I thought with Ducati you get the hair standing up on the back of your neck.
Perhaps the demo bike had been detuned? I don't know.
I know that one would be nice to have, but it was not a bike I HAD to have.
That's cool. I figure I just saved myself another $12K.

Earlier in this trip, while on the TAT, I had convinced myself I wanted a BMW HP2 Enduro. I was fortunate enough to ride one, and while it IS a nice bike, it didn't feel right. Good power, reliable engine that's easy to work on, nice long wheelbase, but its expensive and has a small fuel tank.
Not buying a HP2, that was the first $10K I figured I saved.

So what's next?
A Buell Xl12.


For this ride it was just the Lead Rider and myself.
After I figured out where the key was, I started the engine.
And began to laugh my ass off.
I'd never felt a V-twin like this before.
Chicks would love this!

As for the bike, I liked it.
Honestly, once the sensation returned to my testicles, I had to admit it was a fun bike to ride. Plenty of torque, nimble, and stable. But that engine, what the heck happened to the vibration counterweights?
When I pulled in the clutch to come to a stop at the light, I thought I was riding on corrugated pavement like rumble strips on the side of the road.
The bike did have a good tone for the factory exhaust.

After the ride, I waited around the BMW tent for MotoAdventureGal to finish work.
That's when I met Paige.
Paige is a woman, who rides up and down the west coast from Alaska to Mexico. She's confident, and you can tell she's the kind of person who just lives life as hard as she can, all the time. We easily got into conversation, for hours.
Next thing I know were closing down, and headed out to the parking lots to get our bikes. Paige is standing by her KTM 950 Adventure - the one in the last picture of the last ride report update - she's talking on the cell phone.
As I walk by, admiring her bike, she tosses me the keys, put the phone down for a momement and says "Take it for a ride".

Normally, "No."
I'd heard that these KTM's can be "finicky" but great bikes.
I don't have time in my life for "maintenance intensive bikes". 2 hour oil changes that require you to take off gas tanks, and inspect three screens. "No thank you." was the thought in my head as I inocently tossed a leg over the KTM.
Then I pushed the starter...
The song of the V-twin though the uncorked Remus exhaust sent shivers up my spine. Just like a Ferrari...
The sitting position was upright, and comfortable.
I put the bike in gear, and gently let out the clutch.

A few small circles in the parking lot - I noticed the bike felt light and ballanced.
Straight line acceleration - Oh my! Better than the Ducati Hypermotard?
Brakes - Crisp and linear.

I got a bit more confident and rode over the sidewalk into the next parking lot. Never felt the sidewalk.

A bit faster, over the sidewalk back to the original parking lot.
30 mph... moosh. Hardly a wiggle.

Ohh!

I returned the KTM to Paige who was waiting for me.
"What do you think?" She asked.
"I hate you." was my reply, as a huge ear to ear grin spread across my face.

Little did I realise it, but my brain wanted more.
More acceleration, more braking, more speed, more visual and viceral input.
My brain began to hatch plans to force me to do something irrational.
It quietly worked on me over the next weeks of riding, softening me up for the right opportunity... It just needed a little luck to get it's way.

I slept the sleep of kings.
Visions of twisty roads and endless rugged trails lured me into deeper and deeper dreams.

Q~

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