ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 05-16-2013, 12:18 AM   #181
betitou
Thumperized!
 
betitou's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: Spain
Oddometer: 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by max384 View Post
Cool ride report. Just a suggestion though, could you incorporate the pictures in with your story? Rather than telling your story and then including all the pictures at the end. Maybe I just have ADHD, but I have trouble reading through the wall of text and then just skip to the pictures. However, I then don't have the story behind the pictures and found myself skimming through them.
Despite it's a good suggestion... I think that a journey of this size is enough a brain-racker.
If I was the OP, I'd take the easy way on my RR and save energy for the trip itself.

__________________
1990 Suzuki GS 500 E
2003 Suzuki GS 500
2004 Suzuki DL 650 V-Strom
2005 Yamaha XT 660 R
Hello from Spain!
betitou is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 03:44 AM   #182
FLARider1
Beastly Adventurer
 
FLARider1's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Homestead, Florida
Oddometer: 1,204
Quote:
Originally Posted by betitou View Post
Despite it's a good suggestion... I think that a journey of this size is enough a brain-racker.
If I was the OP, I'd take the easy way on my RR and save energy for the trip itself.

exactly..........sitting at home on your computer with fast internet its easy to flip back and forth between writing and posting pictures....underway with most of the time slow ass internet it is much easier to just write everything and then pop in the pics.

stay with your style and most important the ride!!!.........was sad, but happy to see that you hadn't posted in a couple of days.......
FLARider1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 04:57 AM   #183
max384
Disgruntled Student
 
max384's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2011
Location: Sugar Notch, PA
Oddometer: 3,054
Just a suggestion fellas. No need to jump all over me. If the OP doesn't like my suggestion, he won't change anything. When I write something with the intention of others reading, I appreciate constructive criticism as much as, if not more than, the positive comments.
__________________
'09 Suzuki SV650, '02 KLR250, CRF70 and 80 for the kids
IBA # 56419

Pennsylvania to Newfoundland Ride Report
max384 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 05:01 AM   #184
betitou
Thumperized!
 
betitou's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: Spain
Oddometer: 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by max384 View Post
Just a suggestion fellas. No need to jump all over me. If the OP doesn't like my suggestion, he won't change anything. When I write something with the intention of others reading, I appreciate constructive criticism as much as, if not more than, the positive comments.
A good suggestion I said!
Sorry if I made you feel like jumped over, not my intention, indeed
__________________
1990 Suzuki GS 500 E
2003 Suzuki GS 500
2004 Suzuki DL 650 V-Strom
2005 Yamaha XT 660 R
Hello from Spain!
betitou is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 08:16 AM   #185
h2o_snow
Water, snow & dirt too.
 
h2o_snow's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: North of Boise-vegas, ID
Oddometer: 714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trane Francks View Post
Yeah, this. Enjoy the ride. That's what it's all about.
+1. If theres a little time to post - gravy - for us!

Take the time to smell the roses and don't let the report interfere w/the ride.
__________________
06 TE 610; 98 DR 650 - Sold: a past pleasure
02 XT225 - Wifey's ride
So I'm packing my bags for the Misty Mountains
Over the hills where the spirits fly,
I really don't know.
h2o_snow is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 11:03 AM   #186
Keithert
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2013
Oddometer: 646
Quote:
Originally Posted by max384 View Post
Cool ride report. Just a suggestion though, could you incorporate the pictures in with your story? Rather than telling your story and then including all the pictures at the end. Maybe I just have ADHD, but I have trouble reading through the wall of text and then just skip to the pictures. However, I then don't have the story behind the pictures and found myself skimming through them.
At my work they block Photobucket. So I can read the threads here but can't see an pictures that are hosted on Photobucket!
__________________
2007 Yamaha Royal Star Tour Deluxe
2005 Suzuki V-Strom 650
2005 Yamaha XT225
Keithert is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 11:07 AM   #187
woodly1069
Beastly Adventurer
 
woodly1069's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2008
Location: Louisville, KY...really too far from the hills!
Oddometer: 1,624
ah, you have internet nazis too! fargin' bastages!
__________________
If you can't fix it with a hammer, you've got an electrical problem!
woodly1069 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 12:31 PM   #188
dmaxmike
former quadtard.
 
dmaxmike's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2010
Location: Close to the groundhog, PA
Oddometer: 750
Quote:
Originally Posted by stuntheavy View Post
I've always turned wrenches since I was young. Decided to go to school, was approached by BMW to go through their factory training, and eventually wound up in the dealership environment. Education: Check. Career: Check. (Or so I thought. For a multitude of reasons, and the pains of Big Business, I found myself as my own worst enemy. I refused to be a hack, and unfortunately it seems in this field, that type of behavior is handsomely rewarded.) I learned pride was more valuable to me than numbers in my bank account.
Flat rate is sometimes hard for people with a conscience to do, especially on a high end euro brand like BMW.

Love the writing and your plan (or lack thereof) Im in for the duration.
__________________
I don't know how to ride a bike...yet
CRF250X
F650 GS Dakar
dmaxmike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 04:58 PM   #189
stuntheavy OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2013
Location: Tejas
Oddometer: 150
Yikes....

Alright, lets try it this way, and see how it flows. I was going about it the other way simply because it is easier. I can write me whole entry into Notepad, and then when I do find WiFi a quick copy and paste, plop in the pictures, and presto. Anyway, Maybe this will work.


Day 8: So the Dragon had been fun, real fun. But it was time to go. Last night, some guys from Chatanooga came in. Somehow they managed to shoehorn a 5 man tent onto the back of their bike....man, to have a cruiser with a steel frame...what luxuries they have! Anyway, they are the only ones camping other than myself, and mention they were told it was going to get cold tonight. 1 out of the 5 have sleeping pads. Oops. Indeed, it does drop to the 30s, and I find my Blue Kazoo bag quite comfy.

Morning comes and I begin packing, as they head off down the Dragon. I got my on-road start on sportbikes, and I'll always be a fan. The semi-exotics as I call them, like Aprilia's RSV, Honda's RC51, KTM's RC8 all have a special place in my heart. Someday I'll own one, and to hear them screaming up the Dragon is enough for me to want to give it one last go. My tire is already shot, so why not. As I get every last thing I have on the bike, I head to the entrance to the Deal's Gap parkinglot, and zero the averages on the GPS. I want to see how fast I can run the Dragon, fully loaded, full tilt. Foolish maybe, but it was a bragging-rights sort of thing that only I'd care about.

Taking off, I notice how much slower acceleration is. More noticable is how incredibly light the front is, especially climbing the hills under full throttle. It's going to take some serious body language to keep this pointed straight.

Turn after turn I slip and slide, wrestling the overburdened beast, but use copious amounts of throttle. Cake's song, "The Distance" seems to play in my head. Something I will never, ever, forget is sliding around 1000cc sportbikes and their leather clad jockeys.

Finally, at the other side, I come to the turn-around, and dive on the brakes. Sadly, I watch the GPS average drop a few points, as I slow to a stop. Still, all said and done, I had done the entire Dragon, fully loaded, on a dirtbike with knobbies, and 6 gallons of fuel at an average of 44.5mph, including a dead start, and dead stop. (Over the next few days I learned that when the Deal's Gap Riding Society was still around, 50.1mph was the record, on a sportbike, so I had a new feeling of accomplishment to have come so close to what was once incredibly fast) As you can see, the tire was not the only rubber that gave way. If you aren't wide knuckled, and have arm pump so bad you can't open your fists, you didn't truly Slay the Dragon!











The tire is smoked, the bike has been beat mercilessly and it was time to give it a break, and move on. I had been told the Cherohala Skyway was a nice ride, and it was on the way to Tellico anyway. Perfect. Away I went, chugging along. I find a near waterfall along the way. It's small, but it's casting a cool rainbow that I'm unable to catch with the camera.



The Cherohala is indeed gorgeous. I must have got off the bike to view and take pictures of the mountains 10 times. I find myself just staring off into oblivion. It's hard to judge distance, when everything is so vast. I think of what it must have been like, in times of conflict. How intimidating the terrain must have been. There's even a small washout on the Skyway.












The rest of the Village People didn't show up...


Onward, I crest at nearly 5500'! Amazing! The bike, surprisingly runs pretty good. Down on power, as to be expected, but seems to start fine, and runs decently. I guess thats an XRR for ya.



Coming down the otherside, I wander into Tellico, and see Tellico Motorcycle Outfitters. There's a gorgeous little DR parked out front, I must investigate.



Inside, I find more Adventure gear than I have ever seen in one store. I think long and hard about buying a nice pair of waterproof gloves as well as a front fender bag, but it's just not in the budget, and sadly leave empty handed. I have worn MX gloves all of my riding life, onroad or off, due to the amount of feel they allow. I'm going to be kicking myself for this decision in the west, when elevation is high, and it's raining, I'm sure.

I cruise on up the road to Hunt's Lodge, and decide this is the place to stay. The price is right at around 12$/night. They have WiFi (which is currently being a little buggy), hot showers, and two other ameneties which are included free, which is unusual. Free styrofoam coolers and ice, and free electricity to charge my gadgets. That'll do! The ability to have something perishable is a rare treat.


Day 9:

I can't fathom how many flying stinging insects there are here, and how many spiders. A quick google search, and it appears the most common is a basic "jumping spider". They give me the heeby jeebies and the little aholes wont leave me alone. Same with very very tiny black ants. I haven't been bit much, although I must find at least 5 spiders on me a day. Some welcoming committee.

I leave camp in an effort to go find a rear tire, and possibly a front. I stop at a few places, before stopping at Champion Cycle, where the owner greets me at the door. We get to takling, and I notice a KLX650R in the showroom. Wait a minute, this is no ordinary KLXR. He has fitted a ZX9 front end and swingarm to it, and stuff sportbike 17's under it! Very very cool, and very unusual. We get to talking, his son owns a BMW, and we talk about wrenching, and my trip. After a few hours, I decide to continue my search for tires, and move on.


And a cool Trail70


I don't find any other dealers, and somehow wander over to Bald River Falls. It's worth the ride. I hang around for a while, find a trail that goes up the less steep side, and if one were so inclined, could reach out and touch the water.







Heading back into town, I stop at the local grocery store and take advantage of my new found luxury of a cooler. Upon arriving back at camp, I find that I am arriving just about the same time everyone else is. As I settle in, I notice something pecuiliar. This is a bit out of place, but it's an important piece of knowledge into my background as a rider. I've always been one to take inadequate equipment to extreme places. I vividly remember banging crash-cages on sportbikes with another stuntrider as we hammered down a whoops section on an mx track in our younger days. I never got into wild partying, and things of that nature as a kid. I was always off doing something crazy, on something with an engine. Back on topic, the campground is as intimidating as a basket full of fluffy bunnies. However, as I sit here and dine on a delicacy of PB&J and faucet water, I see cruisers, and sportbikes coming in, eyes the size of dinner plates. I watch one fella on ADV style bike even almost biff it off the gravel driveway, and down a hill. It hits me. It's the gravel driveway! They are all out of their element and this must be the most terrifying part of their day. I must get closer and watch this parade of possible carnage! A fantastic show is provided free of charge with my dinner. Noone goes down, but I see some close calls, and some very bizzare riding techniques. I guess that probably makes me a jerk, but I chuckled myself to sleep that night. Who would've thought you could get headshake at 3 1/4mph.




Day 10:

I find that there is a cycle salvage yard in the area, and head on over. On the ride over I find some a nice one-and-a-half lane country road through some farms. I'm a nut for these kinda roads. They're slow, usually poor condition, and smell like cow poo....but still, there's something about a winding country road. I come across a Gatekeeper of sorts, and his minions.









I have an odd love for cycle salvage yards. Who knows what kinda cool stuff you'll find. I tell them I'm looking for a 18" enduro tire. They point to a pretty crushed up KLR, and say 40$ for the rear tire. It's nearly new, so it's a good deal. After dismounting and handing it to me, I discover that it is a 17". No beuno. I take a few pictures, and check out the place. Being this close to the Dragon, there is no shortage of impressively smashed rides. Row after row of crashed Goldwings. And pirate ships. The Ape makes me sad inside. :(







After leaving, I hop on eBay. I guess having tires shipped in is my only option. I find a good deal on tires, and as I'm about to click "buy it now" notice they are in Tennessee. Heck, they are just down the road! I head up the road about 45minutes, and come to this little tiny retail shop, Purdy's Motorsports.

Inside is jammed packed with all the good stuff. An MX punk would go crazy in here. They cut me a good deal, a real good deal on a tire, but I'll have to wait til Thursday for it to come in. I contemplate a chain. Mine is stretching so badly that it needs adjustment twice a day. I think I'll get one when I return. I talk bikes with the kid behind the counter, and we have a common interest in motards. People seem a whole lot more friendly when you ride an enduro. When I ride my stunted-out sportbike on the road, all I usually get is menacing glares, as if I had just put their kitten in a blender.


Day 11:
First day of doing abso-freaking-lutely nothing! I hang around the campground and read Zen and the Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance all day long. Bikes come and go, the ants and spiders still wage their holy war against me, and the bees, hornets, and mud wasps all cruise around overhead. I wonder why they are all so prevelent here. I don't care, as long I don't end up like that fella that was mountain climbing and got stung to death.

Also, I have teamed up with another Inmate, whose name on here I don't even remember. We were both riding the TAT solo, and have decided to ride together, for safety, and it'll be a way better experience if I can watch someone else eat it on at least three seperate occasions. We head out for the TAT on Monday. That means that the next few days for me will be a basic look-over of the bike, re-organize gear, and get ready for the fun stuff. The owner at Tellico Motorcycle Outfitters warned that the water crossings here would be exceptionally deep this time of year, especially the 'bad one'. I forsee a very soggy yardsale in my future.


Day 12:

I woke up to an unusual circurmstance. As I walked to my bike to get something out of one of the Ortleib panniers, it was standing unusually upright. Perhaps she was saying "I'm ready to go for a cruise!" after a days rest.

No no, that wasn't it. The rear tire was a flat as a pancake. Great, now I have to dismount the tire, put in the spare tube, ride to the bikeshop, get the new tire, and do it all over again. Then I notice something. I have a habit of tightening the tubes stem nut against the valve cap. Well, it's not, and that's not how I left it. I don't know. Maybe gremlins in the night did it. No idea.

I reinflate the tire with my hand pump, which is a workout in itself. I make breakfast, and hang out, and write the majority of this RR update. Read a few more pages in Zen, screw around for a while, and its time for lunch.

The tire seems to be holding pressure, and I head off to the shop to pick up the new tire. I stop a few times along the way to check pressure and it still seems okay, although the chain is making one heck of a racket. While at the shop, Purdy's Motorsports, I decide it's in my own best interest to buy a chain. As much as I don't want to, and as much as it is NOT in the budget, I just have a feeling this one is about to leave me stranded.

Most people splurge on a nice outfit. Maybe a fancy restaurant and a nice night out. Perhaps even a weekend getaway. I splurge on an X-ring chain.

Purdy's is great. They are primarily an eBay business, but do have a brick and mortar store front. While making small talk, I mention I'm camping. The guy behind the counter kinda gives me that look that I've become all too accustomed to these days. He asks how I plan to work on the bike, where, ect. Then, he offers my the stores own chainbreak and that I could do it right there in the parkinglot. Great! I break the new chain, and I'm done in notime.



The old one is impressively bad. This it is, laid on it's side.



I'd highly recommend this place, if you're starting the TAT and need something. They are a PU and Tucker dealer. They're in Loudon, which is a bit of a drive, but they smoked everyones prices, by far.

After that I head back to camp, to change the tire. Propped up on a rock, I pull the rear wheel and go to town.The campground even has a waterbarrel for me to dunk the tube in to check for pinholes: none present. I throw the wheel back on the bike, and go in search of wifi, since the campground is being a bit wonky. The K270 does ride nice. I hope it performs well offroad. Perhaps I'll go in search of proving grounds tomorrow. I can't believe I'm actually putting a dual sport tire on something I own. The old me would find this kind of compromise and degree of reasoning absolutely unacceptable.



The bike seems happier. Nice new chain, no racket out of it. Nice new rear tire.

All in all, it's been a pretty good day. Spent way more than I wanted, and will have to compensate the next few days.

So that's about it ladies and gentlemen. Now here's a homework assignment for ya'll. I'm curious to see who participates and what ya'll come up with.

This whole trip is entirely out of my comfort zone. I haven't camped in 10+ years. I don't know anything about the places I've been, nor the places I'm going. I know the bike, and I know my wrenches well, but that's where the familiarity ends. For me, camping alone is way beyond my comfort zone. Not knowing what is going to happen at the end of the trip is scary. Hell, as my good friend and neighbor put it, "You're flying without a parachute now". And one way or another, it's going to be one heck of a ride.

I'm a strong believer in the following saying: What can you know about yourself, if you never push your own limits?

I likely won't update this again until I have started the TAT. Over the weekend, pick one thing that is out of your comfort zone. One single thing. Maybe a fear you have wanted to get over. Maybe a 'bucket list' item you have been putting off. Maybe it's talking to the produce girl at the grocery store. Pick one thing. One, regardless of how small, or how significant it is, that is beyond your comfort zone, go out, and accomplish it.

Respond here, or PM me, or even email me (ridesa [A-T] gmail.com) if you'd like. I'm genuinely curious to see who is willing to step just a little out of their comfort zone, and learn a little about themselves. Live a little!

stuntheavy screwed with this post 05-16-2013 at 05:25 PM
stuntheavy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 05:23 PM   #190
Trane Francks
Studly Adventurer
 
Trane Francks's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2012
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Oddometer: 541
Excellent! Loved sliding through The Dragon vicariously through you.
Trane Francks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 07:32 PM   #191
hardwaregrrl
You talkin' to me?
 
hardwaregrrl's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2006
Location: Atlanta
Oddometer: 6,877
Man.....this is awesome!!!!! I'll do my best to accomplish your proverbial "poop in the woods" this weekend.
hardwaregrrl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 07:48 PM   #192
jm-2008
Gnarly Adventurer
 
jm-2008's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: South Eastern Australia
Oddometer: 478
Smoked





The tire is smoked,

Nah!
Significant improvement in contact patch you have there!
Transition to the side knobs looks like it'd be intersting


Nonsense aside,
Looks like circumstances have lined up for you and you've made the committment, enjoy every inch of the road ahead.
When your head is devoid of customers, managers, budgets, deadlines etc. the pace slows down to where you can take in a great deal of the country when travelling through.
Sadly so many of us are locked in to another Ground Hog Day that when time permits for a trip we are often too rushed for time to make the best of the opportunity.
Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance - takes me back to reading it in the 70's, not so much about motorcycles I recall, but a good choice given where you are at present.

Stay safe and enjoy

JM-2008
jm-2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 08:47 PM   #193
DutchVDub
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2013
Location: Firestone, CO
Oddometer: 854
Excellent update, I am very impressed with your ability to utterly destroy parts but still keep them functioning just long enough to get it all sorted.
DutchVDub is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 09:08 PM   #194
speedmonkey7
Gnarly Adventurer
 
speedmonkey7's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Thousand Oaks, CA
Oddometer: 336
Thanks for taking the time to write this for us! Definitely subscribed. I know it sounds odd, but I really like the lack of plan and your willingness to actually ride hard when the mood strikes you. I sometimes try to pretend I've "grown up "and attempt to ride safe and sane. Then 30 seconds later I forget and yank that front wheel off the ground again with a huge grin, remembering that that's what riding is all about to me. Even on a long trip I'm going to have to be an idiot at times. You've helped me to feel ok about that again, and I appreciate that. Not killing yourself is a good thing but honestly, having fun is the main thing, because that's why you're out there on a bike. Your initial prep and ability with the wrenches and riding should pull you through! Good luck and have fun. I'd offer a couch space but I live on a giant rock in the middle of the Pacific. I don't think you'll be riding all the way here! :screwy:

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I997 using Tapatalk 2
__________________
Speedmonkey7

"Ride with caution . And be thankful cagers are slightly more predictable than marsupials."
-XRman (fellow inmate)
speedmonkey7 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2013, 09:11 PM   #195
speedmonkey7
Gnarly Adventurer
 
speedmonkey7's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Thousand Oaks, CA
Oddometer: 336
Oh yeah and your writing is great! I just plowed through all 20 pages of this thread in one sitting, and want more!

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I997 using Tapatalk 2
__________________
Speedmonkey7

"Ride with caution . And be thankful cagers are slightly more predictable than marsupials."
-XRman (fellow inmate)
speedmonkey7 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 12:24 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014