Hacking West by West: The TAT….

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by Abenteuerfahrer, Jun 29, 2011.

  1. mrprez

    mrprez KJ4WMZ

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Mobile, Al
    I read about the nudie TAT riders, I'd like to hear about how you got over/around/through that creek? I went back and reread your TAT report but couldn't find that particular tale....
  2. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Prescott, Arizona, USA
    Swooped into Lake City last night amid the Monsoon rains..

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    Patronized a bar that had some good brewski and eats..

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    Great Place to unwind after a windy, twisty ride down from the cold Mountains.

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    When I am on a trip no matter how seriously difficult... I always include some good eats... the TAT is to me not all about prowess, suffering, machine busting heroics.. but also embrace the surrounding area of culture: the Towns; the people...Americana..

    If you see an intriguing little shop at the edge of a tiny hamlet, I take the time to stop and go inside. Talk to the locals, listen to the rivers :ear??, smell the smoke from forest fires. Each sense will heighten your appreciation of the journey that you’re on. Don’t be afraid to stop at the side of the road in the middle of nowhere and just sit and for you hearies listen to the absolute silence or for us deafies; the wind sighing in the branches of the trees and the smell of the land. Get off your bike and check out up close the devastation that a forest fire leaves behind in its wake, discovering the delicate return of life under the fallen trees.
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    There is so much more to a trip like this than just eating up the miles and saying "I did it." You&#8217;re making memories, so make the most of it while you can.This is how I intended to do the TAT..not Iron Butting it!

    And here's food for thought >>>!!

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    When the WiFi in the Motel sucked...I found the ideal place..

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    Here's where I feed you my stories...

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    My bare essential room; wood floor; leaking water from condenser onto wet carpet; 100 year old matress; 2 outlets; 1980's TV....ah, and adenture nonethless..

    And for $93.00 Dollars...eecchh...they didn't even know what the password was for their Wifi, so had to go to either the Coffee shop or a Bar...:huh
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    Ok.. enough of Foodies and Lake Cities comings and goings...

    Left early, cold cold..bundled up and hit the slopes to...

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    Easy Peasy at first...great surface to slowly ascend to:

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    A heavenly majestic Entrance...

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    Then came Bronson..!! and got stopped cold.

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    Pictures do no justice here..it was a steep slope..I needed momentum from the base but the constant traffic of Jeeps, ATV slowed me down..re-accelerating simply spit rocks backwards toward the hordes of ATV'ers..I needed speed due to my one wheel drive to traverse the slope which I had to scale for about 13 miles to the summit of Cinnamon Pass. To no avail...had difficulty turning around to as I am 60" wide...alas gave up for safeties sake and descended back toward Lake City. Did I feel defeated, of course not..just that a one wheel drive with a sidecar on the hip isn't doable if you had to slow down for these ATV''ers and Jeep..I needed to bypass them in order to gain elevation..no dice. Didn't want to be the terror of Cinnamon Pass:lol3.

    Down I went....reliefed...this is the first time the rig met a real obstacle. I'll come back sans sidecar someday:clap. Perhaps detach the sidecar and come back with the GS. Perfectly doable! This mountain is supposed to be friendly for Big Bikes..while Engineer Pass isn't..

    Went down and returned to Salida toward HOME.

    Traversed one last Mountain via pavement...took a deep breath and bid him good bye.

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    And now while I close and go HOME...I want to thank you all for the tremendous support and information you provided. I will be back with full force...probalby with a solo bike...400cc or less or even my GS after detaching the Tub from her hip and slay those buggers. The GS is more comfortable on the way home...



    HERE's a Riding Quotation for those who stay home and procrastinate when it&#8217; all work ($$$) and no play<o:p></o:p>

    "All the money in the world won't buy you more than your allotted time. Personally I'm pretty sure I'll never have quite enough of either but time gets my vote."

    <o:p>Cheers</o:p>
  3. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

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    Pour ceux qui comprennent la langue des signes américaine pour les sourds!


    <IFRAME height=315 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/K-UysG7yeIk" frameBorder=0 width=560 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>
  4. One Less Harley

    One Less Harley OH.THAT'S GONNA HURT

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    glad your making the trip...be safe and enjoy.
  5. pennymiler

    pennymiler Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2008
    Oddometer:
    19
    Well done Elmar! Onward home you go!! See ya soon!!

    A magnificent thread!!

    Love ya!
  6. XC Rider

    XC Rider Motorcycle Vagabond

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    Location:
    Right where I need to be
    Congrats on what you've accomplished here Elmer! :clap And thanks for keeping us entertained. The DRZ is a great choice for the TAT.

    Merci pour le video, tres interesant. Je comprends bien le francais mais pas la langue des signes americaines; peut-etre des sous-titres? :D
  7. Honkey Cat

    Honkey Cat Tailights Fade!

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    Elmer congrats on a awesome trip, enjoyed your write up. If I ever see your mcdonals Gs on the road ( no missing it LOL ) I'll make sure to say hi.
  8. Ginger Beard

    Ginger Beard I have no soul

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Sunny Northern Cuba (aka: South Florida)
    NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! :2cry

    Congrats on an awesome trip and thanks ton for taking us along. It's been a pleasure reading your RR.

    "All the money in the world won't buy you more than your allotted time. Personally I'm pretty sure I'll never have quite enough of either but time gets my vote."


    I like it. If you get the time post up some pics of the ride home and good journey man. :freaky
  9. DirtyDog

    DirtyDog Lust for dust.

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Tulsa... it's OK
    It happened multiple times, including Day 8 of my ride, but I pre-discussed some of the navigation issues on Day 6 and used it as an example.

    Elmer- glad to hear you "finished" your adventure on positive terms. Look forward to more details...
  10. VespaMamma

    VespaMamma Shutterbug

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2008
    Oddometer:
    54
    Location:
    North Carolina
    :waysad sorry you had to stop there but glad you made it to Colorado as you said you would!! It was a great ride and you made me wish I was there with you through some parts...other parts I'd leave it to you :lol3 Can't wait to welcome you back home :happay:crash
  11. MarineandFamily

    MarineandFamily n00b

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3
    Papa,

    Great job. Very entertaining to say the least. We are hoping to get on a space-a flight today. Should be in San Diego by the weekend. So proud of your determination to continue your trip when you seemed to want to quit. Look forward to your next trip. Tel Sis and the family We love them.

    Native son.
  12. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

    Joined:
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    As I ride home...here are a few closure statements of the TAT ride via sidecar.

    The Machine:

    The vehicle is my 2005 1200 GS with a DMC enduro side car. The bike sports 100 hp; has a 3:1 ratio final drive giving it plenty of tractor like grunt going at slow 1-2 gear. The standard trans came with a 2.82:1..which is in my opinion too high thus the 3.0!

    I also sport car tires on the GS and sidecar which are interchangeable should the drive wheel tire wear down to 50%, I simply swap the sidecar tire which never seems to wear as it just rolls there. Longevity of this car tire(Vredestein 165/15-M/S) is somewhere around 8000-12,000 miles compared to theregualr motorcycle tires with the likes of Meteler Toruance ot Karoo...2500-3500 miles on a sidecar rig!

    My 2005 GS also has ABS servo brakes, an absolute great help. One can stop the rig with just your pinkie finger. In addition thebike aslo has interlinked brakes. You can use the front brake only and both wheel are braked; most at about 85/15..front/ rear. The foot brake can be applied if so chosen but I never do. Riding on gravel I disable the ABS and use the rear 90% of the time. Coming down a steep descend not sense in braking via ABS..you won't stop fully..brake non ABS where you can intentionally lock your rear..much better control on gravel.

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    The sidecar has it's own brake not linked to the BMW..so in a quick right turn one can use a sling shot effect braking..giving you a quicker right turn on gravel epecially downhill; not so making a left turn..slow down or accelerate intentionally with some spin to pivot the bike's rear to the right then re-accelerate and take off. Practice makes perfect..which so far I have perfected...I can thus ride pretty fast on gravel leaving most followers on bikes in the dust.

    When sidecars are being build by the manufacturers, most do not need a kickplate because the subframe underneath the motor seems sufficient to protect the underbody on the engine..but in my opinion one can still accidentally sit upon a sharp rock that could get in between the 2 frames and penetrate into the crankcase. So I remodelled the original BMW kick plate to fit onto the subframe; hammer it our to mate then fasten with heavy SS clamps foreasy oil change removal.

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    This is the fly by wire drive that lifts the sidecar to make driving the rig so much easier: corrects the crown of the road; easy fender access and tire change; sets the driver horizontally when traversing right leaning slopes on Mountains trails; corrects driving effort when the Prairie winds come from the left side; neutralizes steering on the Interstate..pretty hands free driving.

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    Preparation

    I carried almost everything. Yes, I know..this contributed to the weigh..did the same when I went to Alaska, except sand wife now. Had every tool that I might need...I could have assisted those in need for just about everything, even a case of water; energy bars..come-along-tow straps..chairs..mini grill..jack..the works..11.5 gallons of gasoline. Encounterd none that needed help...a few tire irons that did bail Ken out (3-15" curved tire irons)..the best of the lot..don't leave home without em'!

    Carried cold weather clothings for the higer elevation. Rode ATGATT most of the time...except Oklahoma...back to ATGATT in the cold Mountain elevation.


    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p> </o:p>
    The TAT.... Personal Notes, Rants.... and others Quotations that I have cited.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p> </o:p>
    I am blessed to have the love and support of an amazing partner, my wife, love of my life.. <o:p></o:p>
    Although my being away is sometimes hard for her, she gives me my freedom, and doesn't <o:p></o:p>
    begrudge my passion for adventuring. I ride guilt-free.<o:p></o:p>
    ****************************<o:p></o:p>
    I don't think I was surprised at what I found. I knew what I was potentially in for, but again, Hack riders ability has something to do with it as for 2 wheeled riders&#8230;.there are plenty of riders who can ride a big twin cylinder bike easily through places that give other riders fits on a 250cc machine. <o:p></o:p>
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    I know that a 1200 GS/Hack rider would have rather been on a 400cc bike/Hack at certain times, but maybe not for the 3000 miles of returning home.<o:p></o:p>
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    I really contemplated my options. When it came down to it though, I decided that I'm not doing this trail to prove anything...I'm pretty sure I can take on the Pass. I decided that the fun vs. risk didn't add up so I'm sorry to say....I ditched the Cinnamon Pass till next time!<o:p></o:p>
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    I've always been oddly attracted to remote places. I guess it's the explorer in me; I want to go where few have been, and where few will ever go. I've also fancied myself to be a bit of an "Adventure rider" type....<o:p></o:p>
    My adventure has no doubt left me with great memories for life and stories I can tell my children and grandchildren. I can feel the trail left me wiser, more patient, and with a tiny bit more focus on the things that matter.<o:p></o:p>
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    Bring your camera along and I know you are but some don&#8217;t and just give narratives; USE IT! So many people take trips and then say, "I was having too much fun riding to stop and take pictures." These are the same people who "Ooo" and "Ahhh" over other people&#8217;s pictures, lamenting that they wish that they had stopped more often. You&#8217;re on a Grand Adventure, seeing things that most people will never see in their lifetime and more importantly, doing it from the back of a motorcycle! Stop and smell the flowers and engrave those memories into long-lasting pictures to cherish for a lifetime. It&#8217;s also fun to show them off to envious friends and when you are writing your memoirs you&#8217;ll be glad you had the pictures to bring all those wonderful memories back to life. They are the stuff of life!<o:p></o:p>
    ************************************<o:p></o:p>
    Once they reach Colorado, a whole new set of factors come into the definition. My personal favorite is stress. The stress of being so far away from the safety net of a familiar motorcycle dealer or repair shop, being possibly chased by irate landowners, even mosquitoes or the unknown of sleeping, eating and traveling far away from home. For each rider a personal stress level of his or her envelope for defining adventure is different. My stress meter glows orange when I see a motor home or car pulling a trailer. I know Mr. and Mrs. USA driving the metal elephant, is looking out and around for moose or bears, definitely not for me the smallish motorcycle&#8230;&#8230;.&#8221;I didn&#8217;t see you&#8221;! <o:p></o:p>
    **************************************<o:p></o:p>
    For some it is "scenic" if it is flat, unending views of landscape. Others, perhaps you too, only consider it scenic only if all the elements of color, topography, vegetation are mixed together. Or anything in between. The only way you will know if it is "scenic" is to go, have a look and then of course decide .<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p> </o:p>
    Cheers....<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p> </o:p>

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  13. oldtrucks

    oldtrucks Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    293
    Location:
    NorCal
    Enjoyed the RR, come back with a smaller bike and take it all the way to Oregon!
  14. dickosaurus

    dickosaurus Seasoned Noob

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Oddometer:
    803
    Location:
    Lone Rabbit, Oklahoma
    Really enjoyed your most entertaining ride report and thanks for taking the time to post it. I rode the TAT in '08 on a bike and find the sidehack gig pretty interesting, es verdad? May have to get me one of those things.
  15. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
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    4,130
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    Elmer--

    Just stumbled on this thread today. Don't know how I missed it since I've been laid up for a week with a summer flu and nothing to do but cruze ADV.

    Anyway, your report once again confirms my desire to never go motorcycling east of the Mississippi. Though I'm thinking now of moving the demarcation line west to Denver.

    Glad to see the rig didn't give you any problems. After reading Mighty Matt's troubles in S.A. with his BigBoi rig I was starting to fear that these big GS hacks are too delicate for long distance trips (apologies to MikePa, but we all can't be superhuman!)

    Thanks for the trip report and the vids. Hope the trip home was enjoyable.

    --Droney
  16. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

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    Aye Droney..

    Fear not, these BMW/DMC or CSM rigs do just fine, as long as you don't make it too "big" with the likes of Matt's BigBoy--and that the attachments are purely to and from the builders subframe > mainframe, nothing shared from the OEM engines bolts. nuts, pans, etc. There is nothing delicate, really...damn tough engine. Just make sure that you most often aim the bike through the easier pathway and basically forget the sidecar, let it bounce around. Do take heed with your speed. Of course have greater shocks on the bike and carry a spare shock for the sidecar, just in case. Oh, yes, I carried the kitchen sink, had just about everything to fix my outfit as well could provide road assistance to those solo riders if needed. Carried a total of 11.5 gallons gasoline and a full case of water...so I was on the heavy side..thus the slipping of going up hill on heavy rocky ascends. Go for it...do the TAT! By the way the Vredesteins 165/15 have served me very well...I am sure Matt can attest to that...so all ya guys..get em' while you can. Don't leave home without them.

    Cheers..
  17. sandsman

    sandsman I ride more than some and less than others.

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2011
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    Location:
    Greenville, Tx
    Although I have a rig totally different from yours, I too will go well prepared with extra fuel, extra water, and plenty of tools and a good repair manual too. I have only had this Goldwing/Hannigan sidecar setup for about 2 months and have not done alot to it. Only big mod was to add a car tire to the rear on the bike. My ride will be about 6,500 miles, leaving in 5 days.

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    We are pretty heavy, I started figuring out the weights involved, bike, sidecar, trailer. By the time we add our stuff plus us, I figure about 2,300 lbs.....wow. This is our honeymoon trip.
  18. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

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    Happy HoneyMoon..guys...go for it..I did Alaska at #1400...ate a rear Metzeler Tourance every 3000 miles.

    That was then and this is now: car tire... Good choice of having put a car tire in the rear. Mine is a Vredestein 165/15 and so far has 7000 miles on it with hardly any wear. Your GW's 6cyl will do fine...but I am sure gas mileage will suffer..heck it's a honeymoon's adventure, who cares:clap:freaky. Ride safe, ride far..

    Cheers....
  19. DirtyDR

    DirtyDR Dana

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
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    2,595
    Location:
    Edwards,Colorado
    Hey Elmer, thanks for calling while you were in Colorado and sorry I missed you. Next time you want to try Cinnamon I will run it with you on my GS rig, the Ural is just too easy.

    Sometimes a TKC 80 on the spare rim does come in handy but I have yet to need it.

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    Great ride report and congratulations on making it to Colorado.
  20. Abenteuerfahrer

    Abenteuerfahrer Deaf on Wheels

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Prescott, Arizona, USA
    Sorry I missed you too..I knew you were onto the Rallyes. Always next time.

    Cheers...