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Old 10-15-2013, 07:05 AM   #31
Orangecicle OP
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So, to answer a few questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by eddyturn View Post
Those cramp busters are bad ju-ju like you found out. OK for street but not for dirt. . . .
No sheite.. That thing probably saved a crash one day and then caused a crash the next day. When the pavement ends, take those dang things off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingPenguin View Post
So...... where do you want to go for our next trip?
Arizona??? Utah??? Hwy. 1??? Baja??? You guys pick the location, and I'll gladly follow and consume your dust.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob View Post
Orangecicle, your a lucky guy to hook up with those guys. Its nice to push the envelope sometimes and having that support group around must have made you feel better. Some of that stuff will be easier next time. What happened to the truck and trailer?
Yep, I could not have done what I did of the BDR alone. Just not possible. Period. Even if it were possible, it's just not in my mind a trip that would be fun alone. Part of the adventure is getting out into the world and meeting people, exposing your vulnerabilities, and seeing what happens. Also, through this ride I developed friendships with three more inmates who, according to my wife, suffer from comparable mental abnormalities. The trip wasn't "easy" for me, but man was it fun! I don't know that I would have wanted it any other way.

The truck and trailer? Eh, nothing. I wasn't worried. It's a 13-year-old Xterra and a $300 trailer from Northern Tool & Equipment. Collectively, everything there is worth about $875. Regardless, the hail in Golden was plentiful but small, so no damage.

The ribs? Meh. Ribs heal. Once I got back home, I noticed that I creaked when I breathed at times. That's stopped. Ribs are connected to the vertebrae by tendons, and the first chiropractic adjustment effort revealed quickly that I had one spot in my back where the tendons were damaged. The fix for that is time. No worries. I'm pretty well back to normal, if you can call my normal state "normal."
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Old 10-15-2013, 03:10 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc LaDue View Post
I too reached the edge of my comfort zone on Cinnamon back in 2011. . . .Perhaps you'll consider adding a 650 to your fleet and joining us in '14.
Bite your tongue. Actually, I would like to have a KTM 690R as a second bike, but they have to fix the rear subframe first. Besides, there's room for one bike in my life, so I think that it'll have to be the 950 for the foreseeable future.

Quote:
Originally Posted by crowe2815 View Post
Great photos and an interesting tale. I'm still trying to work out if you enjoyed yourself or had a string of sleepless nights followed by days of hating your bike. . . .
It was an "adventure." I consider "adventure" going outside of your comfort zone. Coloring outside the lines. Pushing the envelope. We did all of that. For me, this was unbelievable fun. As far as lack of sleep, my 48-year-old body decided a few years ago that it doesn't really like to sleep anymore, so I've grown accustomed to sleepless nights.

Hating the bike? I never truly hated the bike. It's an amazing bike. I've never ridden anything else like it, and I was shocked throughout this trip at what an incredible beating this thing could take without any complaints whatsoever. Every bike out there has its quirks, so you just have to learn to understand the machine. In my situation, as soon as I got the floats adjusted to 4mm, the bike was perfect. And really, we were riding crazy fast in really rough terrain at times, and I kept thinking that with all the weight I was carrying that there was just no way I wasn't going to shatter the aluminum subframe or blow the rear shock or . . . . But the bike just kept on doing its thing. I love the bike. I love to work on the bike. I don't like it when it lets me down, but hey, that's part of the adventure.
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Old 10-15-2013, 09:44 PM   #33
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Excellent ride report Brad!
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Old 10-16-2013, 12:35 PM   #34
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Great RR Brad. Love your pictures!
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Old 10-17-2013, 05:16 PM   #35
Orangecicle OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingPenguin View Post
The dialogue went something like this:

"Hey Bob, are you ok?"
"Yeah,but my foot is stuck."
"Okay, stay right there while I get my camera"
Hmmmmm. Where have I heard that before?
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Old 11-01-2013, 11:22 AM   #36
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Awesome report, sounds like truly great times
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Old 11-01-2013, 12:39 PM   #37
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Great report Orangecicle! Adventures sometimes suck when you are having them, but the memories are worth millions. I love reading honest reports like these, it's not always roses and unicorns out there.

There's always a better bike for the conditions you are riding RIGHT NOW, best to live with the bike you have an adjust how you ride it. I think the 950's are great all around bikes and a good choice for the BDR routes.
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Old 11-03-2013, 07:21 AM   #38
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Great report! We were down to ride the section from Ouray to Leadville over Labor Day weekend - got to Ouray only to find out that the guy with the CO-BDR map left it at home... So I'll be going back this next summer with my own copy of the map! I agree with you about going with a group, it really makes the trip for all the reasons you mention. Great pics, can't wait to get my own along the route!
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Old 11-03-2013, 12:19 PM   #39
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To wrap up

Thanks for all the kind comments on the thread. As to the photography, well, I once did that for a living. It’s so much more fun now that I’ve made it a hobby that I’m passionate about as opposed to an occupation. Still, I look back on the trip and wish that I’d taken more time to shoot.

After taking some weeks away, I thought I’d return to this thread one last time to give some final . . . pointers, if I can call them that. So, here goes:
  1. Keep it light. Just carry what you need. You’ll need a Camelback or something comparable, as well as some snacks along the way. All of that can be replenished from town to town as you go. You probably do not need extra gas. If your bike will go 100 miles on a tank on dirt roads, you should be fine. Basic clothing, basic toiletries, and you should be good to go. Also, pack your gear so that your bike is well balanced with a low center of gravity. You need to get the weight off of the top of the bike as much as possible. Kelly ran Magadan panniers, which kept the weight on his bike low and close to the bike: http://www.adventure-spec.com/defaul...-panniers.html. Wolfman dry saddlebags would be another good choice. Brent had a GiantLoop Coyote: http://giantloopmoto.com/products/coyote-saddlebag/. Whatever you do, keep the center of gravity low.

  2. Avoid spares. This is in line with the “keep it light” rule, but it goes a little beyond that. I carried a spare fuel pump and fittings, spare rectifier, spare rear brake rebuild kit, etc. My bike was stupidly heavy. If you think you might need a spare to replace an older part, replace the old part a month before the trip, and give yourself the solace of knowing that you’ve got a new part and don’t have “user error” from a recent installation. I installed new carb floats and needles just before I left, and that was the thing that was really wrong with my bike during the trip. I would have noticed the problem had a run the bike around for a month or so after making that change. So, get the testing time in on any changes before you go.

  3. Camping gear. You can avoid camping if you want. Maybe do that to save weight. If you carry camping gear, you have to avoid the heavy stuff. Look at Big Agnes gear. That was displayed at CJ’s event in Steamboat Springs this year, and it is really incredible stuff. They had a very nice tent that was two pounds. !!!! https://www.bigagnes.com/Products/De...Creek1Platinum

  4. Fitness. Exercise before you go, and stop drinking carbonated drinks. Breathing at that altitude is . . . difficult. Do what you can to improve your lung capacity and efficiency, so get walking or jogging, and cut out the carbonation. You’ll thank me later.

  5. Camera equipment. Keep it light. I carried a tripod, a Canon 60D, a Fuji X-series outfit, a flash, a remote trigger, filters, etc. I barely used any of it. I should have stuck to just a wide-angle lens and my Fuji X-Pro1. I would have been happier in the end.

  6. Tires. 50/50 tires are inadequate. I ran Pirelli Rally tires. Loved the front, and it is now my standard front tire. The Rally rear has great forward grip, but I would have preferred more of a knobby. The Rally rear is also LOUD on the pavement. Whatever you do, avoid street tires or something that is more of a 50/50 tire like the Pirelli Scorpion. I think you could do the route on Scorpions, but I would never try that.

  7. Altitude! Makes sure you set up your bike for the altitude. We had three 950s, all of which had FlexJet 2s on them. In the passes, we had the FlexJets on all of the bikes completely closed, and the bikes ran well. Well, other than mine before the repair. It was fine after the repair. Regardless, the important thing is that if you are running a carbed bike, you will need to be able to dial down the idle settings to make the bike run properly, and remote fuel screws can be very, very useful in this regard. Whatever you do set up your bike for altitude. If you are running carbs, make sure the bike is not overjetted. If you are running EFI, know how to reset your EFI if necessary. In all cases, make sure your bike does not have any air restrictions, such as a dirty filter or restrictive pre-filters.

  8. Practice! Practice on all terrains you have access to before you go. On the COBDR, you will have blacktop roads, dirt roads, potentially slick-as-snot dirt roads, dirt paths, powdery dirt two-tracks, gravel, loose rock hill climbs, very rocky dissents, switchbacks . . . everything. I bottomed my suspension more than once. Do what you can to get ready for all of that.

  9. Discretion/Valor. Respect the conditions and your mental state. If you look at the climb ahead and think, “Not today,” then walk away from the challenge. There are no certificates of achievement awarded for making the entire trip. If it doesn’t feel right, save the challenge for another day.

  10. Stop. Stop when you’re tired. Stop when you want to. Stop to meet people. Stop just to stop. Whatever you do, don’t rush this trip. There’s so much to see, and you’ll go places that you will never see again in your life. So slow down.

But, probably the most important lesson I learned through this trip just hit me the other day. I was walking with my daughter, and we hit a hill in the neighborhood. As is usual for her, she slowed to a crawl, and I found myself at the top of the hill looking back to see her only half way up. Some months ago I would have groused and complained about her not trying hard enough. This time, I walked back down to her, put my arm around her and said, "We got this."

That's the group mentality that you really need to get through the COBDR. Associate yourself with a group that will take pride in getting everyone safely to the finish line, and you'll be fine.
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Old 11-04-2013, 08:15 PM   #40
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Great recap!
I really enjoyed your report.
Dont be so quick to back down from a little challange.If you push yourself a little out of your comfort zone the knowledge gaind is huge.It does not take much to grow.

Sean
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Old 11-11-2013, 01:38 PM   #41
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for our 2014 trip... you sold me on the DOT knobbies and we will be gearing down the F650s for the switchback corners (the wife is worried about the cutbacks) I told her "we got this"... had already learned the hard lessons of "travel light" similar to how you have...
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:44 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phoenix101 View Post
for our 2014 trip... you sold me on the DOT knobbies and we will be gearing down the F650s for the switchback corners (the wife is worried about the cutbacks) I told her "we got this"... had already learned the hard lessons of "travel light" similar to how you have...
Great call on gearing down the bike. Something else I should have mentioned. I was running stock 17/42 gears on my bike. That did not work well at all. Kelly's bike was running 16/42 and Brent's was 16/45, if I recall correctly. I needed lower gearing on my bike, no question about it.

Since then, I've switched to 16/42 gearing, and I have a 45 tooth rear gear on order. I went riding on some pretty technical trails this weekend, and I think that 16/45 is going to be my gearing going forward.
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:03 PM   #43
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Thanks for the epilogue. I can relate to what you went through even though I have yet to " hit the passes of Colorado". I will be there during the coming season and expect to do better than I would have had I not read your two threads.
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:22 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by akaDigger View Post
Thanks for the epilogue. I can relate to what you went through even though I have yet to " hit the passes of Colorado". I will be there during the coming season and expect to do better than I would have had I not read your two threads.
Cool. ADV is all about giving back, and I was hoping that some of the things I learned along the way would benefit others. Safe travels.
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:35 PM   #45
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Nice wrap-up. After an adventure, most people can identify with the took-too-much-stuff advice.
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