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Old 05-31-2011, 07:24 PM   #16
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Day 6 Bartlesville OK - Braman OK

Day started picking up new tires at Shep's



We can do this



Well, as luck would have it, I pinched THREE tubes...never happened to me before....but here we were, wasting time...in all we changed the flat yesterday and 3 pinched tubes plus 4 tires for a grand total of 8 tires changed in 24 hrs...great workout but over half the day was wasted!

Finally, fresh meat:



On our way to Braman.



Nice end to the day crossing Bitter Creek...



We stayed at the Kanza Motel. Cheapest deal of the trip, $35 a night. No windows...and a personalized caretaker who told us: if there are any tornado watches I will wake you guys up to go into the shelter...



Tornado shelter under the water tower, 3.5 inch reinforced steel...



Several very nasty storms came through during the evening and into the early morning, but thank God no tornadoes.

Video of Day 6...last poor formated day...

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Old 05-31-2011, 07:56 PM   #17
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Looked like a flash mob of cows there. No issues with any unexpected get offs in the mud?
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Old 06-01-2011, 07:07 PM   #18
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Day 7 Braman OK - Liberal KS

Day 7 early morning thunderstorms lingered for a little while and left us around 7 am. It was still raining when we packed up, ate breakfast and started riding.

At first the mud was passable and fun. It had a sandy consistency and was wet enough that allowed it to keep the new tires relatively clean. But we slowed down considerably. From 50-60 MPH, what we were used to do on the flats when dry to 20 MPH.



But then we hit mud that had the consistency of a mix between cream cheese and concrete. Pace slowed down to 10 MPH...and by the time I checked my front wheel I knew we were in trouble. This stuff stuck to everything with a vengeance. Our tires, wheels, engine guard, fenders, boots, everything was covered. We decided to turn around and look for parallel alternate dirt roads that had the kind of mud we liked...we looked north and south, no luck.







At this pace, there was no way we were going to make it to Liberal on time...so we decided to cut our losses and b-lined south to the closest paved road that went west. We had our fun in the mud all morning but were looking forward to getting our mileage back up. Eventually we rejoined the TAT further west near Alva. All in all, a 60 mile reroute in pavement.

Past Alva the weather really improved. Sun came out. Landscape turned drier. Humidity dropped quickly. It felt like a different state.



Tons of fun riding 60 MPH again

Until I hear through the headphones: my clutch is gone...

Cable snapped.



OK. I had read on several places, bring an extra clutch cable...

No clue what to do.

I did have 3G, so I posted a question on ADV forum here and voila, other than a few smart-ass comments, tips kept coming on how to deal with it, amazing. My son insisted he could ride without a clutch. So after a false start, we kept going west.





Riding to Liberal as the sun set.



Day 7 video summary, back with the correct format, worth waiting to download the HD version.

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Old 06-02-2011, 07:26 PM   #19
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Day 8: Liberal KS to Trinidad CO

Dorothy's home, from OZ, in Liberal



A few more long straights



Sand...



First few hills, to the left...





Already in New Mexico. The transition is stunning...















The last stretch before hitting Trinidad, Colorado.



Happy 21st Alex!!!



Getting carded:



Video summary is a little long but the scenery is stunning. As usual, HD version available with a click. (I'm uploading it (again) and will be up later Sat night)

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Old 06-03-2011, 05:08 AM   #20
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Great Times

Great times you guys.
Loved the vids and the birthday song.
Memories to last a lifetime.


I was gonna ask why in the heck you rode 250's.
But remembered the answer.
Because they were out of 175's


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Old 06-03-2011, 03:22 PM   #21
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Happy b-day Alex!



Handy camera work ejtv
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Old 06-03-2011, 06:07 PM   #22
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Days 9 & 10 Trinidad to Denver

I think these are north of La Veta, around the Greenhorn Mountain:













These are on the Shelf Road and beyond, north of Canon City:









I think on the Rampart Range already:









Single track fun on the north section of the Rampart Range



Hotel parking lot in Denver:



So we rode 2,500 miles to eat dinner at a Louisiana style cajun restaurant, NoNo's...this was the only eatery within walking distance of the hotel we used in the southern suburbs of Denver. Pretty good actually, they even had Abita's Purple Haze, one of the local Louisiana beers I like...



Waiting for cab ride the next day & airport:





Last video of the trip 6 posts below.
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Old 06-03-2011, 07:59 PM   #23
EnduroRdr
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Hello neighbor! Subscribed, we really enjoyed reading this one (I hope you have more to add later) because we sure seem to have a lot in common. (Farther/Son) dual sport trips. And - We too have been following Mobius for a couple years now. yes that is THE inspirational thread if there ever was one. Our last trip to Arkansas this past Easter week 2011 - http://www.twtex.com/forums/showthread.php?t=58977 (I was trying out the new GoPro) I'm still updating that RR. Kinda slow at editing my stuff . Now my son keeps talking about us riding the TAT too. One day - I promise!

I have to assume you have other bikes at home? Cant imagine not being able to ride until the return to Denver - how's that working out for you? Also when will we see the followups on the return to your TAT adventure? Great RR - thanks for sharing.
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Old 06-03-2011, 08:37 PM   #24
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I loved that 'no traffic' moment...that's a do what I say not what I do moment if I've ever seen one!
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Old 06-04-2011, 11:48 AM   #25
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random "technical" notes for those interested or new to this

TAT:

If you are wondering if the TAT is worth it, the answer is yes. Every area had its charm, even 50 miles without turns in OK. It was a blast at 70 MPH
The subtle transitions in climate, geography, people, food, weather, humidity, smells, agriculture, oil wells, terrain, altitude...taking it all in was tremendous. After exploring more of Colorado and Utah in the next year, we hope to continue on the TAT to Oregon and beyond the following year.

We found the choice of roads for the TAT and the Mississippi Hill Country Trail by Sam Correro to be excellent and with little to no traffic. We would go hours at a time without seeing another human being or car or truck. I highly recommend spending the money for the maps, worth every penny, studying them, creating the tracks on your GPS map program and uploading them to your unit. I did not use the roll charts or the maps during the trip. Navigation with the GPS plus the ability of both riders to communicate via bluetooth headset made it very smooth and quick. I simply cannot imagine riding at the speeds we rode with roll charts and maps.

Navigation/Logistics:

I did a lot of research on City Navigator, Google maps and Google earth to confirm that motels and gas stations actually existed. Our WR's extended tank gave us a range of about 200 plus miles, so gas was never an issue.

Plenty of food available on the road. We packed lunch only two or three times as we entered western Oklahoma and New Mexico.

We decided to skip camping along the route to get to Denver faster and get good rest. 10-12 hrs on the bike day after day was tiring. To be frank, with the exception of some areas in New Mexico that were private property anyway, I didn't think the portions of the TAT on this trip had the camping potential I consider worthwhile given the added weight and time to set up and break camp.

Carry an extra clutch cable on the TAT, unlike what I did. Practice changing tires and patching flats if you don't know how.

Bring and use chain lube.

Riding Terrain was varied, but I don't think there was anything too technical for an average rider. Three or four sandy sections that were relatively short, maybe stretches of 2 to 3 miles, but not too deep. Just a couple of short medium steep climbs, less technical than anything in the White Rim Trail. And in Central Oklahoma mud if it rains. That proved the most difficult and frustrating. But you can cheat like we did after you have your fill.

Choice of bikes with the WR250R's I think was very good. Anything heavier than 300 pounds and that is not dirt oriented would have been a pain in the neck in the sand and mud. Very grippy dual sport DOT knobby tires like the Pirelli MT21 or similar I also think are essential despite the wear. The weather changes everything in less than a few minutes.

Countour helmet cam was frustrating: short battery life, difficult power button to use, unstable bluetooth iPhone interface, unstable software on the PC, lens casing easily gets dirty in dusty conditions, tricky re-alignment after you disassemble and clean the lens, horrible microphone placement, tricky battery to unload and reload, etc. I can go on and on about the negatives, but overall, the quality of the video was stunning, I didn't even shoot in full HD, the record button is very easy to access, and it just looks cooler and lower profile than the Hero, so I think it is worthy of consideration. I got the one with GPS, but I think it was overkill. Save the money and buy the other model. You don't really need that feature, in my opinion, especially because it doesn't work consistently once you download into your PC or Mac. Even the bluetooth iPhone interface card I found to be overkill too. I never used more than the two pre-programmed settings. And I only checked alignment once, and that was because I made the mistake of cleaning the re-assembling the lens incorrectly after a cleaning. Mount was acceptable for helmets, not great, but acceptable. I spent time at home experimenting to find the most advantageous location and camera position on the helmet, and audio settings (mic gain at 12).


Other Equipment/Gear:

Panasonic Lumix LX5. I have owned several digital pocket cameras since I abandoned my bulky 35mm Nikon FM and assorted lenses 20 years ago, but this Panasonic does almost everything that bigger SLR digital cameras do...and you simply cannot beat a Leica lens, sp for that price.

Interphone F4 bluetooth stereo intercom. It worked perfectly. Miles ahead of the original Interphone if you're wondering. 12 plus hours of battery life.

Zac Speed Exotek chest protector/hydration pack worked well. I never realized how important the chest protector was until I kept getting pummeled by rocks from the bike in front of me. It converts into a small backpack too if you're into riding and hiking.

I can't speak highly enough of Giant Loop products for saddlebags and tank bags. Expensive but great design. Same goes for HighwayDirtbikes hand-guards and mirrors.

We used dual sport helmets with visors that accommodated goggles. Visors were used when it was rainy, cold or during highway stretches. Goggles a must for the dust.

Both bikes have electric grip warmers one by www.hotgrips.com the other one by Symtec. Both work well, but with Symtec you can use your own grips and it is cheaper. After living with these on two 10 day trips, we both agree Symtec has the more elegant solution.

FroggToggs jacket and pants worked well. Kind of bulky for storage, but relatively cheap and doubles as a light jacket/windbreaker for riding and hiking.


Repairs:

Bikes are getting TLC, one at www.grandprixmotorsports.com, a Yamaha dealer, and another one, for half the price, at www.fastlinepowersports.com, both in Littleton, south of Denver. Grand Prix chosen because of location outside the city and south so we didn't have to ride in the city or highways too much, the other one found by chance, right next to the miniUstorage we are using. Both had friendly staff. Feedback after I pay the bill and pick up the bikes.

Sheps Motorcycle in Bartlesville, OK, the only store we found between Mississippi and Colorado that was right on the TAT. Helpful staff, just a block from hotel, food, Starbucks, Laundromat, etc.


Hope this helps others.
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Old 06-04-2011, 12:13 PM   #26
Bob
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Thanks for the great report and pics.
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Old 06-04-2011, 04:13 PM   #27
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Wr250r

Interesting RR--I'm doing the TAT on the WRR and had already ordered spare hoses, clutch cable (I always parallel one in) and the Enduro Star stand (no rocks needed for flats). I do a lot of offroad--CDT etc--and I have had good luck with Slime and an electic pump. I just add air as needed and the Slime slows the leak--normally make it to a convient placed to do the repair. Considering tubliss but not sure--good RR thanks
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Old 06-04-2011, 07:10 PM   #28
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Last video of trip, Trinidad to Rampart Range

Here's the last installment:



Video ends at the spot I took this picture of the WR250R with Pike's Peak in the background, on the Rampart Range, a few miles south west of Denver, shown at the start of this thread:



Hope you enjoyed the report.

We certainly enjoyed riding those 2,500 miles from Baton Rouge to Denver.

Cheers!
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Old 06-05-2011, 05:35 AM   #29
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Nice trip report and I appreciated the gear review as well.
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Old 06-05-2011, 03:15 PM   #30
ua99003
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My wife sent me a copy of a email from one of her exec. at BRG describing your ride intents. I gave it a quick look and one thing came to mind .... TAT !!!
Your ride report was great, well put together. As a parent you will cherish the time with your son forever. I am also a member of DSRL, you need to post up any furture rides there also. I am also impressed with the WR. I presently have 06 Tiger and I am on the lookout for a WR or KLX 250 for more dirt stuff.
Great ride !!!!
Keith
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