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Old 02-19-2013, 06:37 AM   #196
mrt10x
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The TAT conundrum.. the big bikes better for everything East of New Mexico, dirt bike needed for everything West. I plan on riding the GSA out from Colorado,, riding the trail on the BMW back to CO then switching to the Husaberg.. summer of 2014 assuming I havent caved in to the "security" trap and taken a full time grown up job
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Old 02-19-2013, 08:11 AM   #197
oldtrucks
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Originally Posted by leftystrat62 View Post
One of the inmates who said he had 20 yrs off road racing experience pm'd me last night with a response to a question I had about using a KTM 500EXC for the trip. He basically warned me about weight and the sandy sections with my bike. He also said this:
"I ran into two guys in Nevada that got off the TAT because one had a BMW GS800 and the other a KTM 990 because their bikes were just too big and heavy. They started the TAT in Colorada and had a lot of trouble. Their bikes although new had a lot of damage."
Not trying to discourage your choice of bike-just thought it could be helpful when packing up. Best of luck on your trip.
I think there's a flip side to that and rider skill can't be overlooked. Big Wan and Little Wan ran the TAT 2up on a big KTM and had no problem. Granted Big Wan is an animal, but the weight didn't stop them in the sand, they did Black Dragon with no trouble. Two other couples ran the TAT 2up this past summer on DR650s, based on their ride report they had very few problems getting through and it was usually on loose Rocky climbs when they did.
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Old 02-19-2013, 02:00 PM   #198
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leftystrat62 View Post
One of the inmates who said he had 20 yrs off road racing experience pm'd me last night with a response to a question I had about using a KTM 500EXC for the trip. He basically warned me about weight and the sandy sections with my bike. He also said this:
"I ran into two guys in Nevada that got off the TAT because one had a BMW GS800 and the other a KTM 990 because their bikes were just too big and heavy. They started the TAT in Colorada and had a lot of trouble. Their bikes although new had a lot of damage."
Not trying to discourage your choice of bike-just thought it could be helpful when packing up. Best of luck on your trip.

I just read this thread.

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=479876

Two guys that did it on 950's. It might be ruff in some parts, but looking at the ENTIRE route (including slabbing from MO to East coast, TAT, then slabbbing back to MO) the 950 is the best choice for me. Plus I am a college student, can't afford another bike and wouldn't dare sell my 950.
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Old 02-19-2013, 03:06 PM   #199
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t Plus I am a college student, can't afford another bike and wouldn't dare sell my 950.
College student with a 950 , I was lucky just to drive my parents chevy
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Old 02-19-2013, 03:20 PM   #200
One Less Harley
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Even w/ little dirt riding experience one can ride TN to CO on a big bike, After that one would need some skills to call upon...at least for a big bike.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:42 PM   #201
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Even w/ little dirt riding experience one can ride TN to CO on a big bike, After that one would need some skills to call upon...at least for a big bike.
At what point does a bike become "big?" Im going to be hitting the TAT on a DR650 and I have 5 months experience in the dirt (over 10 years on street tho)- to be honest im not really scared of whats coming so long as I make good choices (gearing, packing light, etc). Im not a big guy or super strong either- maybe im just ignorant and ill get a reality check?

I read a report about a young guy with like 3 months experience who did the TAT on a DRz400s. He had all kinds of trouble.. with the bike. It seemed his riding skill wasnt as much an issue as his bad luck. Great report though- he wouldnt give up. Thoughts on the relativity of "big" here?
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:14 PM   #202
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Originally Posted by GSF1200S View Post
At what point does a bike become "big?" Im going to be hitting the TAT on a DR650 and I have 5 months experience in the dirt (over 10 years on street tho)- to be honest im not really scared of whats coming so long as I make good choices (gearing, packing light, etc). Im not a big guy or super strong either- maybe im just ignorant and ill get a reality check?

I read a report about a young guy with like 3 months experience who did the TAT on a DRz400s. He had all kinds of trouble.. with the bike. It seemed his riding skill wasnt as much an issue as his bad luck. Great report though- he wouldnt give up. Thoughts on the relativity of "big" here?
I've got a GSA, and have ridden some very challenging trails that were truly dirt bike trails with it. After a while I slowly stayed away from those trails because I knew(from experience) I'd be in over my head,and just not enjoying myself. I've now added a WR250R to my stable and very really turn around,and enjoy myself more in the tuff stuff
I think only you can decide what's "big", but from everything I've read & seen,someone with your years of riding experience should have no problems on a 650.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:23 PM   #203
One Less Harley
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I had MANY years of road riding before setting out on the TAT, and limited time off road, but luckily with some good riding companions and coaching was able to complete the complete TAT on a DRZ 400. I was prepared to go solo but luckily I was able to go w/ two other riders. While I might have made it by myself there were some areas where this might not have been wise for my ability. If solo my riding skills wouldn't have improved as much as they did with coaching from the two others. In my case having two others was a safety issue to and gave me the confidence to attack certain places more aggressively than if solo.

IMHO- a novice should be on a DR650 (it's a smallish bike) or smaller, like a DRZ400 or better yet the WR250.

See my link below.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:25 PM   #204
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Originally Posted by GSF1200S View Post
At what point does a bike become "big?"
You'll know when you have to pick it up a couple of times especially when you do it alone several times in succession
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Old 02-19-2013, 07:52 PM   #205
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Please guys, stop mentioning the WR250R Ive been wanting one ever since I first found out about it.. after buying the DR650.

I like the DR650 though- it doesnt ever feel heavy to me until I have to turn it around in loose sand. Ive practiced picking it up the right way and it isnt a challenge- even dropped it in a mudhole (on purpose of course ) and had no problems. Im used to street bikes that are 500+ pounds, so it feels like a mountain bike to me.

Anyways, well see how things go. At this point im planning on doing the Arkansas-Utah portion of the TAT, part of the CDT, and then part of the Pacific Coast Highway before I head north to Alaska. I might cut out either the CDT portion or the PCH- I dont want to cram too much in one trip. Thoughts from you experienced folk?

It definitely seems like bike preference and setup is hugely variable to the rider. Theres a guy down here (bzrider) who rides a GS like a dirtbike and even the experienced guys talk about it being a wonder to see how he throws it around.
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Old 03-06-2013, 01:38 PM   #206
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So those thay have done It/ doing/end stages of planning: what was your budget at for the trip? Given the unexpected breakdowns, I'm curious to see if my budget is on par for the entire TAT, mostly camping.

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Old 03-06-2013, 03:09 PM   #207
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We're planning on between $2,000 and $2,500 (food, gas, accommodations, maintenance - barring any major catastrophes). Our plan is to go total hobo style, as much free camping as possible, oatmeal, bagels, pepperoni and cheese... and some beers! Shipping tires, filters, etc. to a buddy in CO (not included in our budget).

30 days, VT - WA via TAT, return via roads (something like Route 2 or less) about 8,500 miles
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Old 03-06-2013, 03:57 PM   #208
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I'm planning on $125 a day for fuel, food, and lodging. That's a mix of camping and motel, food on the trail and food at restaurants.
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Old 03-06-2013, 05:28 PM   #209
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I'm planning on $125 a day for fuel, food, and lodging. That's a mix of camping and motel, food on the trail and food at restaurants.
Sounds like a nice trip- good total for a good mix of everything. If I could do about this amount, I would.

I personally cant afford that as the TAT is just a portion of what im doing. I am going to be gone essentially all of spring, summer and fall, so im leaving my total at about 60 dollars per day.

I dont really have a set plan, but I would guess ill be doing about 1 tank of gas a day, or about 250 miles. Some days will be more, some will be 0, but overall that leaves me about 35 dollars for food and camping per day. I will mostly be eating canned goods from walmarts and gas stations and sleeping in my tent especially when I can find free camping. I can then buildup "extra money" that I can blow at restaurants or for admission to parks and all that. I have emergency funds set aside that arent planned into my monthly available, so I can change my mind at will. I can ride all day on my DR, but I am told that 200-300 miles is a good amount to shoot for per day so you still get to see a lot while also not burning through the miles too fast.
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Old 03-06-2013, 06:55 PM   #210
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Originally Posted by GSF1200S View Post
Sounds like a nice trip- good total for a good mix of everything. If I could do about this amount, I would.

I personally cant afford that as the TAT is just a portion of what im doing. I am going to be gone essentially all of spring, summer and fall, so im leaving my total at about 60 dollars per day.
Our trip is just the Western Section from Colorado and we plan to stop a few nights in Colorado and Moab. This is really our annual vacation so some nights we'll be roughing it, others will be a little more comfortable. I had to sell it that way to get a couple friends to jump in.

A few more years and I'll have more free time and be able to embark on a longer ride like yours.
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