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Old 01-01-2013, 05:35 PM   #31
wizz
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Location: over yonder on the north coast of ca
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whats the best bike for this trip? i have a ktm 350 exc-f set up for dual sport touring, but i also have a multistrada 620 thats plenty capable of fire roads and such (if a gs can do it my multi certainly can). are smaller nimble bikes or big adv touring pigs more ideal. personally its nice to have the choice.
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:22 PM   #32
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Howdy, Wizz! First of all ... It's great to hear from the North Coast, a glorious region I know pretty well (speaking as a former Mendocino County resident). Happy New Year!

I used to ask early in these inquiries what bike a prospective Heart of the West rider was planning to ride. No more. Now I ask: What kind of rider will be in the saddle?



As you can see, inmate JohnPitts01, a member of first group to ride the entire route, barely survived the now-departed (insurance issue) bucking moose at Crooked Creek Guest Ranch along the Wyoming segment. So for him, riding anything with antlers was out. (ALERT! Crooked Creek has agreed to give Heart of the West ADV Route clients a 10 percent discount. Just ask for Kate, the manager--yet another friend of ADV travelers everywhere. )

Fact is, I lean toward mid-weight bikes. Being a mild-mannered, blue diamond-level rider, I get along on a KLR. So, 650 to 800 ... That range seems ideal to me for the mix of roads and conditions on this route.

Yet Heart of the West has been ridden just fine by folks on 250 Yams, F800s, 990 Katooms and yes, even the great GSA ... the full range of bikes. Just visit the growing number of ride reports and you'll see what I mean.

A German tour company's Beemer medley on the Colorado segment:



The fleet ridden by Dockingpilot's crew, in port @ a quiet Nevada inn:



Mobius' LDF leads the pack on her Suzuki DR-Z400 along the Idaho section:



BigDog sails along the Montana leg on his WR250R:



D-man, on his Honda XR650L, is swallowed up by Utardia:



Wow! Even on horseback? A father and son on the Pony Express segment in the Great Basin ...:



Most of the roads are just fine on big bikes. There is no single-track trail riding. What you see in the two videos and the photographs is typical. But there are several segments (eroded, steep, sandy, rocky, maybe muddy) where (depending your abilities), it might seem that a wee 400 would be mo betta. But the route provides options that make it suitable to any off-highway-capable bike.

It is important to know the fuel range you can stretch out of your ride, and here big bikes with big tanks shine. Depending on which route options you select and whether or not fuel is available at an unreliable occasional source that I've waypointed, you can be looking at more than 300 miles between fuel stops in the Great Basin.

Hope that helps!

byways screwed with this post 03-26-2013 at 06:42 AM Reason: revise text
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:39 PM   #33
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Only for those looking to:
"get away from it all" in the true sense of the meaning
or those perhaps to trying to come as close as possible to feeling like a pioneer might have on the Oregon Trail in 1849.

Oregon Trail, Wyoming, just prior to "Parting of the Ways"
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:51 PM   #34
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Imagine ... hundreds of thousands of emigrants, their wagons and oxen grinding down those tracks and across that landscape ...
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Old 01-02-2013, 08:47 PM   #35
wizz
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Thanks for the info. It will be a while before I tackle such a ride, still on the uphill climb of recovering from lyme, building strength and what not, but definately on the list with the TAT, baha and OBDR. Currently outfitting my ktm for these type rides, maybe my multi with proper shoes and protection would be better for this particular ride (lots of fairly open miles). Once I can start logging some good multiday miles on them I'll have a better idea, or maybe by the time Im get around to this ride I'll have something else. I recollect coming across parts of the Applegate Trail that breaks southwest from the Oregon Trail and wondering the same thing. Quite and undertaking striking out across the west in wagons with all your supplies and what have you. Certainly some hardy folk. Nice videos btw.
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Old 01-02-2013, 09:30 PM   #36
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If any of you are on the fence about using his route package, all I can say is do it. If you truly want to experience the west, stop dicking around trying to create something yourself!!!

Take the proper 2+ weeks off and have a pre-planned trip of a lifetime thanks to Tony. He is THE expert and has been exploring western dirt roads longer than many of you have even been riding...i'm talking 30-40yrs of dirt road routing experience.

He was doing this in SUVs before the word ADV touring or even this website even existed. Tony knows his routes. In fact we consult with him when we are designing our dirt road routes for our state maps and he has joined us on our official BDR rides.

Yes he is the go to man! Do it right, take the time off, use his routes, plan your trip & prep your bikes properly.

If not now, when? You're gonna be dead soon enough and "some day" means never unless you do something about it today!

Bill Eakins - Butler Maps
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Old 01-02-2013, 09:40 PM   #37
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In case any of you want to know who Tony H. is, check him talking @ .44 sec & on various shots on the green KLR.

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Old 01-02-2013, 09:43 PM   #38
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Thanks for all your help Tony!
TT

Quote:
Originally Posted by eakins View Post
In case any of you want to know who Tony H. is, check him talking @ .44 sec & on various shots on the green KLR.

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Old 01-02-2013, 09:53 PM   #39
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An honor to ride with you all!
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Old 01-07-2013, 09:52 AM   #40
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Where to begin ...

From time to time, inmates who are planning Heart of the West rides ask where they might begin and end the journey. Since Heart of the West Adventure Route is (as one inmate described it), kind of a propeller-shaped loop, there are many options that can conveniently accommodate travelers from any point on the compass. There's no need to make a big U-turn at the end and slab your way back to your tow vehicle or return-shipping point.

Here are a few suggested starting/ending locales (one or two of which may require a bit of additional routing, with which I can assist):

Idaho: Idaho Falls (where I live; I can provide parking and other support)
Colorado: Rangely; Steamboat Springs; Grand Junction
Montana: Dillon
Nevada: West Wendover
Utah: Greater Salt Lake City; Provo; Orem; Vernal; Wendover
Wyoming: Kemmerer; Jackson

For storage of your tow vehicle and trailer, if necessary, a request in the “Tent space” thread or other relevant (perhaps regional) thread would likely generate offers from the ADV community to let you park somewhere.

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Old 01-12-2013, 11:17 AM   #41
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Burr ...

-15 degrees in Idaho Falls this morning.

Looking forward to spring ...
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Old 03-10-2013, 09:57 AM   #42
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Custom rerouting

From time to time we are asked to alter or shorten Heart of the West ADV Route to suit the time constraints that normal people face.

In the last week, clients who will be accessing the route from opposite ends of the country -- both facing seven-day limits on their vacation time -- asked that the route be reduced by half. We did so. Now one group will begin and end in Jackson, Wyoming, the other in Idaho Falls -- HQ of Backcountry Byways LLC, home of ADV luminaries Questor and MotoAdventureGal, launch site for last summer's Mobius chapter and (just up the road), Klim (Yes you can!). It also was the locale where Dockingpilot's crew launched their maiden run of the route.

Among the advantages of Heart of the West Adventure Route is that it is adaptable to your needs.

Below, some late-September images of little-known and even less-traveled Idaho backroads that I added to one of the custom reroutes, making a truncated but no-less-rewarding 1,400-mile loop beginning and ending in Idaho Falls:






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Old 03-11-2013, 07:29 AM   #43
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Old 03-14-2013, 04:55 PM   #44
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The Gravely range is awesome!!!....GREAT route Tony!!!!
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:44 PM   #45
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Glad you thought so! Really enjoyed your company and the company of the rest of the Mobius crew ...
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