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Old 12-08-2013, 09:21 AM   #31
mjt1577
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hi MJT, thanks for stopping in! I'll be putting the DR on the road when I get back, so maybe I'll see you on some of the Cowichan trails

Hey Chris...look forward to it!...got the KLR off the road at the moment, starting to prep it for the Dempster next year....FYI, it was -11.5 at the house yesterday...good day to be down south!
cheers, Mike
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Old 12-08-2013, 04:00 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theshnizzle View Post
And who may you be talking about?.....hmmnnnnn.....
*lol* busted! I didn't have anything to add to that discussion, but I think you're gonna have a hell of a Ride Report when you get going, and I'm looking forward to reading it

Quote:
Originally Posted by mjt1577 View Post
Hey Chris...look forward to it!...got the KLR off the road at the moment, starting to prep it for the Dempster next year....FYI, it was -11.5 at the house yesterday...good day to be down south!
Hi Mike,
the Malahat must have been a skating rink with temperatures like that! Have you read Tropic of Cancer's Dempster run? His photos have got me motivated for a trip north as well.





After a few more short weeks back in BC to wrap up work for the year, I flew back to PHX on November 29th. I’ve been saving my 2013 annual leave for this trip, so I don’t have to be back at work until January.

When I went back home in early November, I left the bike in storage down here but I purchased new tires & valves online and had them delivered to Phoenix so they’d be waiting when I got here. I opted for the Michelin PR3s because it’s what I had on the ST previously and have been really pleased with them.

A couple of days ago the good folks at Ride Now put the valves and new tires on and I had them do an OLF at the same time. Prior to leaving BC I did a complete fluid change - plus new air filter - so the bike is ready to roll. We have a few more days, but we’ve plenty to do between now and then to keep us busy. W-Day is on the 13th and we’re riding south the morning of the 14th.

Our long-term plan is to live in Canada, preferably on the East coast. In the short-term, we are still going to have to remain apart, as the average processing time for a residency visa is 2 years and a bit. The days of showing up at the border with a new spouse in one hand, a marriage certificate in the other and then sailing on through immigration, are long gone. With 3 years of long-distance already under our belts, we are both looking forward to finally being together but at the same time, we know that the bureaucratic delay is beyond our control.

In the meantime, she’ll be building on her nursing qualifications. With me being 8 years older, I’m encouraging her to specialize in geriatrics

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circling through the Canadian Rockies
2up thru Mexico
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Old 12-08-2013, 05:59 PM   #33
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I'm along for the trip, glad your missing all the really cold weather up here.
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Old 12-09-2013, 10:05 PM   #34
mjt1577
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Thanks for turning me on to Tropic-of-Canada's RR...fantastic photos and a great read!

I'm interested in how you find the PR3s?...I saw them on a friends Beemer and they looked like a great tire in the wet but I wondered about tire life with all the extra siping. Any intel on that? I run Dunlop RoadSmart IIs on my 1200RT and love them...great in the wet.

I'm sorry to hear you have to endure the long-distance marriage...gotta be tough but the fact that you've already done it for 3 years is obviously an indication of the quality of your relationship...hope the bureaucracy magically processes the paperwork in record time. East coast is nice...Nova Scotia is beautiful, so far as I remember, anyway...last time I rode there was in 1976!!!!!....yikes, that's a long time ago ....speaking of geriatrics
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Old 12-10-2013, 10:46 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cycleman2 View Post
I'm along for the trip, glad your missing all the really cold weather up here.
thanks! the days down here in Phoenix have been in the Celcius teens and the locals are not dealing well with their 'bitter cold snap'

Quote:
Originally Posted by mjt1577 View Post
Thanks for turning me on to Tropic-of-Canada's RR...fantastic photos and a great read!

I'm interested in how you find the PR3s?...I saw them on a friends Beemer and they looked like a great tire in the wet but I wondered about tire life with all the extra siping. Any intel on that? I run Dunlop RoadSmart IIs on my 1200RT and love them...great in the wet.

I'm sorry to hear you have to endure the long-distance marriage...gotta be tough but the fact that you've already done it for 3 years is obviously an indication of the quality of your relationship...hope the bureaucracy magically processes the paperwork in record time. East coast is nice...Nova Scotia is beautiful, so far as I remember, anyway...last time I rode there was in 1976!!!!!....yikes, that's a long time ago ....speaking of geriatrics
glad you're liking that RR, Mike. The ST had PR2s on it when I bought it, and I liked how they handled. I replaced the rear with a PR3 last summer and then punctured it on Hwy 17, after less than 3000km

I kept that same PR3 for the run from Victoria to Phoenix and it definitely flattened out on those arrow-straight Nevada roads. Call it less than 5000km total on that PR3 rear. Fully expecting at least one puncture in Mexico, I didn't want to start the trip with previously-repaired rubber, so I've put the new PR3s on front & rear. I will make a point of adding observations about them as we ride.

The long-distance has its challenges, but we ascribe to that Mexican expression: eso ci que es (pronounced like you spell the word SOCKS), which means 'it is what it is', and focus on our forward momentum.



One of the aspects of Ride Reports that I’m always interested in, is what folks are bringing on their adventure – in particular their tools. Like many folks on here, my toolkit is cobbled together based on factory recommendations, ideas from the most excellent toolkit thread and, of course, my own past breakdowns. I’ve always gravitated towards simplicity in my machinery, preferring equipment I can fix with a Leatherman and profanity. My first cage was an old Toyota FJ40 that had a throttle link consisting of a bicycle brake cable running from the gas pedal, through the firewall and connecting to the carb. My Unimog needed oversized tools but could damn near be disassembled in a weekend. I like my motorcycles equally simple: chain-driven, carbed and electronic-free. The ST is a far more complex machine than I’m used to, but it’s in great condition and I have the entire factory manual in pdf on my tablet.

With all that being said, here’s my tool kit load-out for the trip:




3/8 drive flex-head stubby ratchet
2.5” socket extension bar
8, 10, 12, 13, 14 & 17mm sockets
8 , 10, 14, 17 & 24mm box wrenches
multihead screwdriver (Phillips & flathead bits)
eyeglasses screwdriver
metric Allan keys
needlenose vise grips
multitester
long-neck funnel
oil filter wrench
fuel siphon
fork seal cleaning gizmo
assorted zip-ties
JB Weld
Loctite
Sure-seal
Gorilla Tape
electrical tape
headlamp
cambuckle tie-down straps x 2
ST owners manual

spare oil filter
spare headlight bulb
spare turn signal bulbs
assorted fuses
3 cleaning rags
2 plastic grocery bags (not shown)
spare tupperware clips
spare Impact Rig rivets

tubeless tire repair kit (not in the photo)
Stop & Go air compressor



The whole shebang is in an army surplus toolbag (like this one), with plenty of room left over to compress smaller.

We’ll be driving past plenty of Mallwarts and auto supply shops if we need anything else, and I also have some Mexican service shops in the gps waypoint collection


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day trip to Bamfield
circling through the Canadian Rockies
2up thru Mexico
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Old 12-10-2013, 11:58 AM   #36
MrGoldfish
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Hey! I'm a local here in Phoenix and ride everyday. It might be "cold", but I'm still getting out. Loving the ride report. Keep it coming.

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Old 12-11-2013, 02:24 PM   #37
canadian chris OP
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Originally Posted by MrGoldfish View Post
Hey! I'm a local here in Phoenix and ride everyday. It might be "cold", but I'm still getting out. Loving the ride report. Keep it coming.
thanks! the weekend forecast looks to be a little warmer but with a 5am departure this Saturday, it'll definitely be cool out.


We’re getting down to the wire…2 more sleeps until W-Day and 3 more until we depart. We’ve test-packed our gear, handed the housekeys over to the pet-sitter, picked up the last small items we think we’ll need.

I think that in today’s world, there is a tendency to over-research a trip to the point where the trip itself becomes anti-climatic. The days of sketchy maps, vague directions and a well-developed sense of self-reliance have been replaced with Google Earth, borrowed gps tracks and SPOT. Thanks to Google Street-view, you can even “drive” your entire trip before you leave the house. In planning for this trip, I’ve sometimes found it difficult to rein in the temptation for more and more knowledge of the road ahead, but; without choosing to leave some “unknown”, where is the adventure?

Being responsible for my pillion coupled with some specific timings to meet, I’ve done more research for this trip than I would if I were by myself, however it’s Mexico and if there’s one thing Mexico does well, it’s introducing a little chaos theory to plans and timetables

We’ve given ourselves 7 days to get to Oaxaca, 5 days to see the city and then 5 days to get back to Phoenix. I have family in a little town just outside of Oaxaca city, so we’ll be based there while in the area. On the drive back, we’ll be seeing Chanda’s family in TorC, NM.


Call it a Grand Tour…








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day trip to Bamfield
circling through the Canadian Rockies
2up thru Mexico
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Old 12-11-2013, 04:34 PM   #38
theshnizzle
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I can vouch for the PR 3s. They are a fantastic tire. And it takes a lot for me to change tires. I think my BF got 29,000 k on his rear before changeout. And that's just commuting day in and day out,on flat freeway,bike is a 2000 VFR.

I "played" with a ricer on the Blue Ridge Parkway on the Busa in the wet and the tire is way confidence inspiring. No slipping and I was riding fairly aggressively.....

I loved,loved, loved my avon storms but the PR 2s are better.
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Old 12-13-2013, 09:27 AM   #39
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Stage Three: Phoenix to Oaxaca






We’ll have to catch up on Stage Two later on down the road, as our marriage ceremony is this afternoon and I suspect we’ll be a little too busy for the rest of the day


2200 miles divided by 7 days still works out to over 300 miles a day, but we’re going to push harder the first couple of days so we can mosey slower once we’re south of Manzanillo. The overnights on our map are not 'hard targets' and we are going into this knowing that Mexico affects timetables like saltwater affects steel, so we won’t be watching the clock too closely or gnashing our teeth while performing as Vehicle #43 in a 50-car conga line.

Worse comes to worse, we can veer left at Pinotepa Nacional and make San Lorenzo in a day.


Yesterday I tried changing some USD into Pesos at a Phoenix bank and was told they need 2-days advance notice to change money WTH?? the largest city immediately north of the Mexican mainland and the banks don’t keep Pesos in stock – go figure. They recommended I drive way the hell out to the Phoenix airport and just use one of those sad-sack, human-powered ATMS.


(fml)




We'll be taking our USDs down to Juan at Km21 instead.


There’s a 24hr IHOP just before the Mariposa truck crossing, so the Mrs. and I are going to get a predawn departure in the morning and then grab breakfast there before we cross over. With luck and light traffic, we should be in Guaymas by 4pm tomorrow afternoon!





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day trip to Bamfield
circling through the Canadian Rockies
2up thru Mexico
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Old 12-13-2013, 10:58 PM   #40
mjt1577
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theshnizzle View Post
I can vouch for the PR 3s. They are a fantastic tire. And it takes a lot for me to change tires. I think my BF got 29,000 k on his rear before changeout. And that's just commuting day in and day out,on flat freeway,bike is a 2000 VFR.

I "played" with a ricer on the Blue Ridge Parkway on the Busa in the wet and the tire is way confidence inspiring. No slipping and I was riding fairly aggressively.....

I loved,loved, loved my avon storms but the PR 2s are better.
Great to know...thanks for all the reviews...sounds like they work as well as they look!...mike
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Old 12-13-2013, 11:04 PM   #41
mjt1577
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Congratulations!

Congrats on the wedding!!!...I hope you two had a fabulous day

Looking forward to (vicariously) getting back on the road with you!

all the best, mike
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Old 12-14-2013, 12:18 AM   #42
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don't miss riding in La Huasteca and to Xilitla!
Bernal is another don't miss.
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Old 12-14-2013, 11:17 AM   #43
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CC - do they have street Combio's?

I've not been to Mexico for a while, but I do go to Dominican Republic yearly and I found out that you get a better exchange rate on the street or hotel were we stay - than at the airport. Usually better by 5 pesos

Is Mexico like this as well?

Congrats to U & the new wifey - Enjoy

FYI - its dumping snow in the Mid Atlantic states - Yahoo
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Old 12-14-2013, 12:15 PM   #44
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Old 12-14-2013, 06:41 PM   #45
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There is no reason for a US bank to stock Pesos. The Peso is a depreciating currency, so it would be a bad investment to keep them around.
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