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Old 03-01-2012, 08:56 PM   #586
Lost Rider
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Originally Posted by lvscrvs View Post
Need a little advice from the experts.... My first time riding in DV. Not new to offroad riding, but mostly did it years ago on smaller dirt bikes. Ill be riding with some guys on older GSs. We're intermediate riders, planning to ride on the well defined dirt roads in the park.

The DRZ is new to me... I feel really comfortable on it offroad, I don't love it on the highway.

Love the Tiger on the road, but it feels like a pig in comparison offroad. Plus, it has no engine guards, radiator guards or skidplate (which concerns me because the bike sits 1" lower than stock, so there isn't a lot of ground clearance for off road antics). I've been thinking of this mainly as my pavement bike, with the DRZ intended for offroad fun and games.

If we ride down from Norcal, the Tiger is the obvious choice, plus it's better for hauling camping gear, but if the DRZ is the much better bike for the park, I will truck it down instead.

Oh yeah, we are planning on the second week in April if that makes a difference...



I'm no expert, but there's plenty of roads with spectacular beauty to be ridden on the Tiger, even loaded. I've ridden my R1200R roadster on many of the common gravel road loops.
There's also plenty of roads less traveled with spectacular beauty that you would want the DRZ on.

Depends on what you want out of the trip. Something for everyone in DV....

For me, I'd rather not have to camp with the masses where you can trailer a bike to and instead have the freedom of being self supported on my bike - I would ride the bigger bike carrying my crap, ride routes accordingly and camp in cool spots not next to big RV's, barking dogs, and tourists.

Or pack the DRZ real light....

Either way you you should have fun!



You could camp here, even on a big bike....

Geoligists Cabin, Striped Butte






Or here with your truck:







Something for everyone. ;)
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Old 03-01-2012, 10:27 PM   #587
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Thanks LostRider,

I'm enjoying the heck out of this thread. Really appreciate your pics, maps, descriptions and humor..... and the contributions of others as well.

I camped at Stovepipe Wells went I went through DV on the FJR in November 2010. It was strange.

Love that pic at the Geologists Cabin...

Our tentative plan is to set up camp at Panamint Springs and do day rides out of there with the possible exception of one night in Beatty and maybe another night at the hot springs off Saline Valley.

Brian
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Old 03-02-2012, 10:31 AM   #588
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Originally Posted by lvscrvs View Post
Need a little advice from the experts.... My first time riding in DV. Not new to offroad riding, but mostly did it years ago on smaller dirt bikes. Ill be riding with some guys on older GSs. We're intermediate riders, planning to ride on the well defined dirt roads in the park.

The DRZ is new to me... I feel really comfortable on it offroad, I don't love it on the highway.

Love the Tiger on the road, but it feels like a pig in comparison offroad. Plus, it has no engine guards, radiator guards or skidplate (which concerns me because the bike sits 1" lower than stock, so there isn't a lot of ground clearance for off road antics). I've been thinking of this mainly as my pavement bike, with the DRZ intended for offroad fun and games.

If we ride down from Norcal, the Tiger is the obvious choice, plus it's better for hauling camping gear, but if the DRZ is the much better bike for the park, I will truck it down instead.

Oh yeah, we are planning on the second week in April if that makes a difference...
I've ridden my R1200GSA off road in Death Valley and, IMO, you will be much more limited with the Tiger than the DRZ. You already know the Tiger is a better road bike, but the best of Death Valley is found off road.

I did a 1,000 mile ride in October on my DRZ from central California to Death Valley and back and had a blast. The DRZ is one of the few bikes that is light enough to ride just about anywhere offroad and a good enough street bike for 1,000 mile + rides.

If it were me, I'd take the DRZ as I have done both. Then you can help the other riders who will be on the bigger bikes.

If you take the Tiger, be very careful on any of the dirt roads in DV. There are sharp rocks that your front tire can kick up and cause you to get a flat on the rear tire if you are running street tires or dual sport tires that are not very strong. I have never had a problem with Dunlop 606 tires on my DRZ but I did get a slice on my TKC 80 knobbies on my GSA and it was the rear tire that got sliced. It didn't go flat, (I was lucky) but it caught my attention.

If you don't have a skid plate, rocks can also get kicked up by the front tire and shear off bolts on your engine. I've seen it happen. IMO, a skid plate is required if riding off road in Death Valley.
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Old 03-02-2012, 10:37 AM   #589
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You're welcome Brian, sounds like a good plan.
I too have enjoyed and found this thread to be most useful for quite some time. Glad to be able to contribute in some way, adding to all the info and various points of views formed from visiting this amazing National Park.

Go Get Lost.



-Finn
















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Old 03-02-2012, 11:41 AM   #590
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You're welcome Brian, sounds like a good plan.
I too have enjoyed and found this thread to be most useful for quite some time. Glad to be able to contribute in some way, adding to all the info and various points of views formed from visiting this amazing National Park.

Go Get Lost.



-Finn
















Ooooooooooo........nice pics. I've only seen Burros and Coyotes in DV. You are getting some great shots. I think I'd be out there every month if I could.
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Old 03-02-2012, 02:03 PM   #591
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lvscrvs View Post
Need a little advice from the experts.... My first time riding in DV. Not new to offroad riding, but mostly did it years ago on smaller dirt bikes. Ill be riding with some guys on older GSs. We're intermediate riders, planning to ride on the well defined dirt roads in the park.

The DRZ is new to me... I feel really comfortable on it offroad, I don't love it on the highway.

Love the Tiger on the road, but it feels like a pig in comparison offroad. Plus, it has no engine guards, radiator guards or skidplate (which concerns me because the bike sits 1" lower than stock, so there isn't a lot of ground clearance for off road antics). I've been thinking of this mainly as my pavement bike, with the DRZ intended for offroad fun and games.

If we ride down from Norcal, the Tiger is the obvious choice, plus it's better for hauling camping gear, but if the DRZ is the much better bike for the park, I will truck it down instead.

Oh yeah, we are planning on the second week in April if that makes a difference...

ride the DRZ.

get a larger fuel tank or pack extra fuel. some loops are 150 miles. Goler- Mengel - Striped Butte are a must.

Saline Valley Warm Springs is great too.

Titus Canyon and Ryolite are great but would be fine in a Honda Civic.


Lost Rider failed to mention his get off on his 1200R street bike that busted his valve cover. love ya man

just cause you can ride a street bike on dirt doesn't mean you should.
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Old 03-02-2012, 02:31 PM   #592
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ride the DRZ.

get a larger fuel tank or pack extra fuel. some loops are 150 miles. Goler- Mengel - Striped Butte are a must.

Saline Valley Warm Springs is great too.

Titus Canyon and Ryolite are great but would be fine in a Honda Civic.


Lost Rider failed to mention his get off on his 1200R street bike that busted his valve cover. love ya man

just cause you can ride a street bike on dirt doesn't mean you should.

Of course a dirt bike (with range) is better suited for DV, I just enjoy the quietness of back country camping much more than camping in parking lots, and if I had to choose, I'd go with self contained to avoid the masses. But that's just a personal thing and I'm anti-social anyways, yearning for alone time.

Sounds like a good plan Brian, Panamint is a decent campground as far as campgrounds go. It's a great jump off point with lots of options, no need to take pavement very far and they make a killer burger across the street.


Have fun!




Hey RAZR, if I didn't try that last steep climb at Chloride I'd have been fine. You guys had the beer up there.
Did ride up Golar and down mengal on it though, that was fun.















Was a killer patch job though, lasted a year.


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Old 03-03-2012, 08:46 AM   #593
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Panamint is great to stage from and a better campground as far as people and feel. Furnace Creek(closed right now so Texas spring right beside) is a bit busy. The whole furnace creek experience is a bit of a stain on DV. Too many motor homes and burmuda shorts. Right now the guy in the campground next to me is washing his white Tundra with bottled water. Gotta keep it clean for the trails, eh?

I rode a DRZ the first trip to DV. IMS tank and it was great. Now I bring a smaller bike, my WR250R and it can do ANYTHING here and still do the 160 mile loops comfortably.

2 days ago we did greenwater and dead mans pass (staged from furnace) and yesterday we did the big loop of grapevine-crankshaft-eureka dunes-steel pass-warm springs-saline-lippincott (again this time w-e) and back up racetrack-teakettle-ubehehe. We drove the truck to the ranger station at grapevine and left it there. I was fine on fuel but CountryDoc on the DR350/440 ran out 10 miles from the end and we siphoned from my bike. Loop mileage is 150.

Heading home today. We kicked death valley's ass this trip, it was awesome.

Wes
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Old 03-04-2012, 11:40 AM   #594
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lostrider, 2on2off, razr and rinconrider, thanks for your comments....

i expect there are others out there who might be wondering the same thing about which bike is best for dv...

based on what i see in these pics i'm thinking it might be handy to have at least one pickup... just in case you don't have enough jbweld on hand...
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Old 03-04-2012, 12:00 PM   #595
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I prefer trucking my DR650 over the 990 in Death Valley. Only reason I'm taking the 990 to n00bs is I'm riding up and I can carry all my crap in the cases. Gas mileage is much better on the DR and you can have fun in the loose stuff.
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Old 03-05-2012, 06:16 PM   #596
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I wanna ride......

The weather in Central California was just about perfect today and made it really hard to be in an office all day.

Was anyone lucky enough to ride Death Valley today?
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Old 03-06-2012, 09:49 AM   #597
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Road DV the last 2 days doing some easy stuff since it was my first time here and was solo. Day1>Shoshone>Greenwater>Dantes View>20 mule team>Furnace Creek>Stovepipe>Wildroseback to Emirant CG. Day 2>Beatty>Titus Canyon> FurnaceCreek>Badwater>SalsberryPass>Shoshone.

Awesome country, perfect weather (max 90 at the bottom both days, no wind). .. will definately be back someday to hit more backcountry.

It's very windy and cooler today in Pahrump NV. Doing laundry and washing bikes getting ready to trailer down for the Desert Daze ride in Benson AZ this weekend.









This is what happens when a strap comes off and gets tangled in the rear sprocket

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Old 03-06-2012, 07:53 PM   #598
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Nice route for your first trip to DV.
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Old 03-21-2012, 02:46 PM   #599
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Conditions N/W & N/E of Scotty's Castle?

Has anyone ridden north of North Highway (267) between Scotty's Castle and highway 95?

I want to do some exploring of the dirt roads in this area and ride to the Hard Luck Mine Castle. I understand there can be snow and ice in this area and with the storm that came through last weekend, that closed highway 58 through Tehachapi, there could be some snow and ice.

It is warming up nicely so hopefully any snow that did fall will quickly melt for the perfect conditions.

This is one of the few remaining areas in the Death Valley area I have yet to explore.

Thanks.
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Old 03-22-2012, 10:11 AM   #600
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Has anyone ridden north of North Highway (267) between Scotty's Castle and highway 95?...
Can't help you there, but the storm was cold, though less rain/snow than the storm I witnessed a year ago this time of year. I'd imagine most of the snow has melted. We were in DV from the 14th through the 19th.

Monday morning before heading home I rode a quick loop from PS Resort to Saline Valley Road, across the Talc City Hills, into Darwin and back through Darwin Canyon. It was clear, dry and COLD...froze my ass off. Don't think I've ever been so cold while riding

My highest point was about 5200', and no sign of snow or ice anywhere, although every ridge in view had a dusting of snow.

Sunday it started lightly snowing on us just as we reached the Charcoal Kilns at Mahogany Flat, around 6800'. We'd been in the snow line for about 800' or so.

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