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Old 01-13-2013, 06:09 PM   #1
bmwpowere36m3 OP
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Prospective ADV rider, off-roading in CT?

Hello, I wanted introduce myself and learn of opportunities for off-roading in Connecticut. I'm located in Fairfield County and I've always been passionate about cars and bikes. I remember when I was younger, there was nothing more I wanted than a dirt bike or quad... sadly those dreams never came true for a variety of reasons (parents & lack of nearby places to ride). So I filled my obsession with cars, all kinds of cars, and track days.

Eventually I got a motorcycle (cruiser) and have been street riding for the past few years. So now I'm torn as to what kind of bike to get next... I've always wanted a sport bike and more recently a dual-sport. I know I'll end up getting a sport bike at some point in time, but I'll be honest after watching some motorcycle adventure documentaries (especially long way round & down) I've got this burning desire to do some off-roading and adventure riding (kind of fulfill that childhood dream of riding in the dirt).

My concern before I jump off the deep-end is if its realistic for me in my situation. As far as I know in CT, the only public places open for off-roading are Pachaug State Forest & Thomaston Dam. I just wanted to know what's around as far as trails, dirt/gravel roads, single tracks, etc... Thanks!
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Old 01-13-2013, 08:03 PM   #2
bomber1965
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwpowere36m3 View Post

As far as I know in CT, the only public places open for off-roading are Pachaug State Forest & Thomaston Dam. I just wanted to know what's around as far as trails, dirt/gravel roads, single tracks, etc... Thanks!

Well, one of the standard answers is not to reveal top secret riding spots on public forums. Due to them being over used/shut down.

Private message some locals or just get a $1000 beater bike and hit up a few runs with the locals, you'll find out everything you need to know.



....and fill out your profile.
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Old 01-13-2013, 09:11 PM   #3
bmwpowere36m3 OP
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Originally Posted by bomber1965 View Post
Well, one of the standard answers is not to reveal top secret riding spots on public forums. Due to them being over used/shut down.

Private message some locals or just get a $1000 beater bike and hit up a few runs with the locals, you'll find out everything you need to know.



....and fill out your profile.
Thanks for the advice, so I'm assuming not many "legal" riding places... unless people just don't want to share they're riding locations (which I understand). Part of the problem, is I don't know anyone actively involved in off-roading and the people I know stick to the streets. I just want to know whether it's worth doing if there are enough places to ride. If I have to travel for hours to do some off-roading, then I can only enjoy that when I have more time (weekends or vacations) so I might not be able to enjoy it as often as I'd like (making the purchase of dual-sport bike not a great value in my opinion, when I can get a sport touring and ride it on any paved road).
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:22 PM   #4
8gv
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I really don't know much about your side of the state but...

If you want to do some dual sport riding there's plenty to be had.

Start in Winsted CT and follow the TMAT (Tans Mass Trail) to Greenfield MA. From there, follow the PDR (Puppy Dog Route) through VT up to Troy VT, close to the Canadian border. You can then go east across northern VT, NH and Maine.

Or...

Trailer or ride to Duncannon in central PA. Pick up the TET there and ride it through MD, VA, WV and beyond to GA and FL.

Or...

Ride the TAT (Trans America Trail) all the way to Oregon.

As for singletrack riding. It's not as easy to find as it was 40 years ago but neither is getting chased by the cops.

The BTR (Berkshire Trail Riders) put on several good events each year.

All this can be found in threads here on ADV.

Now what are you wiring for???
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Old 01-15-2013, 09:20 AM   #5
tjzondrz
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Originally Posted by 8gv View Post
I really don't know much about your side of the state but...

If you want to do some dual sport riding there's plenty to be had.

Start in Winsted CT and follow the TMAT (Tans Mass Trail) to Greenfield MA. From there, follow the PDR (Puppy Dog Route) through VT up to Troy VT, close to the Canadian border. You can then go east across northern VT, NH and Maine.

Or...

Trailer or ride to Duncannon in central PA. Pick up the TET there and ride it through MD, VA, WV and beyond to GA and FL.

Or...

Ride the TAT (Trans America Trail) all the way to Oregon.

As for singletrack riding. It's not as easy to find as it was 40 years ago but neither is getting chased by the cops.

The BTR (Berkshire Trail Riders) put on several good events each year.

All this can be found in threads here on ADV.

Now what are you wiring for???
I have never heard of the TET trail.Would you be kind enough to give me some info?
Thanks,Tim.
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Old 01-15-2013, 10:27 AM   #6
bomber1965
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Originally Posted by tjzondrz View Post
I have never heard of the TET trail.Would you be kind enough to give me some info?
Thanks,Tim.

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=508552


http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=815824


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Old 01-15-2013, 07:38 PM   #7
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I am down in southern CT and not much around here other than unpaved town roads especially Westchester county area.

Kainic screwed with this post 01-17-2013 at 06:13 PM
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Old 01-14-2013, 09:06 AM   #8
Richklr650
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ok mr bmwpower this is my opinion and only mine always had dirt bikes. well back in 08 i got my first road bike c50 suzuki cruiser was fun for a little while but couldnt go where i wanted to.. sooooooo bought an 09 klx250s d/s to try some dual sport riding ... was having so much fun i bought an 09 klr650.... now even more fun... i could ride where ever i wanted to. i could ride down the street see a dirt road an just take to where ever it went. could head north south east or west and ride the street for miles untill i found more trails and dirt roads... having a blast doing it last feb i picked up a 08 xr650l to add to the collection ... nothing but good fun times meeting up with other d/s riders oh btw sold the zuk now i have the best of both worlds. you can find many folks out here on a d/s find the one you like and go for it. there are plenty of places to ride top secret and not :)
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Old 01-14-2013, 09:08 AM   #9
Richklr650
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p.s. i have met many good people on here and gone on many rides.
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Old 01-14-2013, 09:28 AM   #10
Speedo66
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Welcome to the asylum!

I recently moved to CT, and have been enjoying some local dirt roads in Litchfield Co. Also many dirt roads in northern Westchester in the North Salem area.

My thing is just to go out for a ride, and if I see a dirt road, just take as far as it'll go. If it crosses dirt roads, take them. Discovered a ton of roads in Westchester that way.

There are also lots of dirt roads and woods trails in southern MA, which is not that far away.

Get a dual sport, you may find you enjoy the handling and quicker steering, even on paved roads, more than your cruiser.
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Old 01-14-2013, 10:57 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Speedo66 View Post
Welcome to the asylum!

I recently moved to CT, and have been enjoying some local dirt roads in Litchfield Co. Also many dirt roads in northern Westchester in the North Salem area.

My thing is just to go out for a ride, and if I see a dirt road, just take as far as it'll go. If it crosses dirt roads, take them. Discovered a ton of roads in Westchester that way.

There are also lots of dirt roads and woods trails in southern MA, which is not that far away.

Get a dual sport, you may find you enjoy the handling and quicker steering, even on paved roads, more than your cruiser.
This is what I did for the most part...got on a dual sport bike and looked for them.

So far I have not been chased or anything and have found some really decent off road locations.

Keep at it.
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Old 01-14-2013, 05:12 PM   #12
bmwpowere36m3 OP
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Great, I really appreciate the feedback guys... I guess I should just try and find some locals and go for a ride. Maybe can find some willing to ride on this forum that'd be great. What do you guys think of a KLR650 for my first D/S bike? I've read good things about them.
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Old 01-15-2013, 04:39 AM   #13
Speedo66
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Originally Posted by bmwpowere36m3 View Post
Great, I really appreciate the feedback guys... I guess I should just try and find some locals and go for a ride. Maybe can find some willing to ride on this forum that'd be great. What do you guys think of a KLR650 for my first D/S bike? I've read good things about them.
Smaller and lighter bikes are easier to ride on dirt. I've had a KLR650, and found it a bit heavy. Lighter is easier to control in difficult terrain, and easier, naturally, to pick up when you fall, and you will fall if you ride enough.

It also depends on what you intend to ride. If you're going to stick to dirt roads, the KLR would be fine, same for a Suz. DR650, but if you intend to get into woods trails, a lighter bike like a Suz. DRZ400 or Yam. WR250R would be a better choice.

Also a couple of very light 250's out there, Yam. XT 225/250 and Kaw Super Sherpa 250 are considered good learning bikes. They're light, but also low. Don't have the high seating position of most dual sports, so a little more confidence inspiring for a new off road rider. They do give up some suspension travel though.
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Old 01-14-2013, 05:18 PM   #14
Richklr650
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i have one...... heavy but goes where i point it ...and a great bike for the twisties
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Old 01-14-2013, 06:17 PM   #15
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Westchester/Putnam Counties, NY

Hi,
I live in northern Westchester and have experienced many of the dirt roads and riding locations several people have talked about in the North Salem area. I could point some of them out, but it would probably be just as effective to go out to this area and ride around. If you want to meet up, I can show you to some of them around here. Heck, maybe I will find some I dont know about or forgot about.

There is some great riding on private property around here as well, but unless you have permission its a no go. There was a great local spot that a ton of local people used to ride for as long as I can remember (I have lived here for almost 20 years and never had any issues until the last few months of this past summer) Someone put the location on a 4x4 forum and people from NJ, PA, NYC and other areas started to come to the spot. They were riding wheelies on the road, littering all over, and treating the place like crap. Needless to say, the cops came several times and now the land owner is patrolling the property and put huge ass boulders along all the entrances so a dual sport bike could barely squeeze through. Its a real shame and could have been avoided if people would respect the locals, public roads and the property owner.

The TMT and PDR are excellent if you want to ease into dual sport riding. You can do either one on a 650cc or larger bike and not have any issues. (I did it with my DL650 in the rain for the entire TMT and half the PDR) If you explore around the roads that lead off the TMT and PDR you are sure to find many other legal back roads. The Winsted area of CT at the start of the TMT has some good riding and some local spots that I have heard people down in our area talk about, but I have never been to them.

I would do what feels right. If you want to try it, get a bike and search this forum for information and people to meet up with. You will get addicted and find out what you really like (or dont) about dual sport riding...than you can take it from there. In fact, my next project is going to be a Suzuki DR650 build up for some adventure riding and eventually a TAT trip.

Good luck in your search for a bike and for places to ride.
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