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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by AZ-Twin, Jul 14, 2011.
Did my daily video summary. I am no expert, but here is some more interesting parts of day 1. I am bummed, I used a mac, and it reduced the video quality from 720P to whatever this is. I need to figure out if it was me or the machine.
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Alrighty....this is looking good.
Its not the Mac....its you, and/or the software. What are you using for the edit? How are you uploading (compressing, saving, or not)?
Its streaming very fast....that's wonderful. No hesitations and delays....hip hip hooray ! ! ! So it ain't all bad.
Alright! I've been waiting for this.. You kept us hanging on the antelope video.. It almost looked like he was getting away. Ha
Looking forward to more.
An old version of I Movie, time for an upgrade.
Great RR, Thanks for sharing and congrats on completing the trip
I am curious if you have any comments on the " Pack Job " Did you bring too much ?, did you use every thing you brought ?, if you were doing it again would you change anything ?
Thanks for asking.
That tail bag looks big, but it is really not that heavy as it has my sleeping bag, tent, Thermarest pad, camping pillow, and first aid kit (big zip lock full of bandages) in it. Plus smaller stuff like camping stove, fuel, mini lantern, and a few other things. I can post my packing list if you like.
I used pretty much everything I brought except for all the tools, but, you never know, as the report goes on you will see where I used some tools.
I will change my type of camping stove. I brought a small one that uses little butane/propane bottles, but Kevin brought a MSR that uses white gas, I am switching to that type as it works much better, and It will use the same fuel as the bike.
I did bring a bike lock cable that I could use to lock up my helmet and jacket if i needed to, but I didn't use it.
I think the biggest issue on a trip like this with several days of camping is laundry. I need to switch to all synthetics, socks, undies, and tee shirts. I only did laundry once, and later in the trip I tossed some dirty cloths as they were stinking up my right pannier. I had food and clean cloths in one pannier, and tools and dirty cloths in the other.
The bike looks over loaded, but really it was not that heavy, jsut bulky, and it handeled pretty good as I had my suspension guy take into account 60LBS (27KG) of luggage.
I am always refining my packing list, but I will also always bring too much stuff, unless I need all my tools and spares, and that would suck. I had no flats, but no way I would have not taken my spare tubes, irons, parch kit, and compressor.
What would I do different, don't bring bike lock, use different stove, all synthetic cloths and do laundry more often.
How much smaller would the pack be, just slightly, and perhaps a couple LBS lighter, but not much.
Thanks Rob, that's good information.
I just did a week long trip on my X CH and I also dumped some stinky clothes and I totally agree with the synthetic clothing and I will be switching to that as well.
Hey Rob. Congrats on Just DO-ing It ! Getting out there and not sitting at home on your ass. I've never done a 2 week trip but I'd like to.
Missed you by a few days as we were in Walden CO for the Moose Run dual sport rally until Sun July 17, would have loved to buy you a beer there as I think you should have passed close by.
Can't wait to see the rest of it...
p.s. You could have bought an XCountry and put on different wheels and the same suspension you did anyhow! Black bikes rule!
Great intro for the story - exactly my feelings too when I'm about to start on a little longer ride.
Great pics and story!
How did your tires perform on the Xch during the trip? I see your buddy has more aggressive knobs on the DRZ.
I'm heading to MT on Wed (XCo is there already) and starting from Helena w/ a group going south on Sat, ending in Albuquerque, NM.
I've packed lotsa tools, tubes and gas, riding and camp gear, and just a few pieces of synth clothes with camp soap and net bag for drying on the road.
My tires look about like yours with Mefo fronts and Kenda on the back, so I'm curious how yours performed.
The Mefo's worked well on both dirt and pavement. We didn't experience any mud, I am sure Kevin's D606 would have been better in mud. I am really happy with the Mefos and will probably get another set. The rear is not down to the wear bars yet, but the front is toast. In Wyoming and CO I could notice wear on the tires at the end of each day, something about the dirt there was really grinding them off. I have never worn out a front tire before a rear tire before.
Looking forward to seeing your pics and hearing your story, I need to get off my butt and work on this ride report, but with school starting here for my son, lots of stuff going on around the house, and did I mention I turned 40 yesterday? Well, I haven't had time, but I will get on it this week.
Mesh bag for drying cloths on the road, great idea, I need one of those.
I wish we could have done some riding, hopefully next year I can make the Moose Run, they got a class for slow guys like me?
South of Quemado to Cuba NM
I wake up bright and early, what a beautiful morning.
Kevin already has the water boiling. He functions much better in the morning than I do.
A cup of coffee, a bowl of oatmeal, pack up and get on the road.
We continue north along the route, but instead of following it to Pie Town, we take a dirt road that goes northwest to Omega, closer to Quemado.
We saw this cool old structure along the way.
We stop at the gas station in Quemado to replenish our water, fill up with gas, and use the phone/internet for a bit.
Then we head east to Pie Town to catch dirt north, back on the trail. It is pretty smooth dirt from US 60 up to 117.
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Just south of where we hit 117 we meet Gary. He is a nice guy from the Pacific Northwest doing the CDR south. He was glad to see us, and as we rolled up he said, "you are just in time," you can see why.
He dodged some sand and the back end spun around on him, but he was fine and was pulling the luggage off to make it easier to stand the bike back up. We gave him a hand and hung out and talked with him while he got his stuff all put back together and he was on the road.
117 is a real pretty ride, I have been up through here a few times before, there are some cool lava flows and rock formations. Unfortunately we only stopped to take pics once at a pull off.
We get to grants, top off our fuel and camel backs, and head out. North out of grants is 547, a nice twisty paved road that would have been more fun on a sportier bike, but still nice on the Xchallenge.
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Shortly after this we hit dirt and venture into ranch land. I think this was probably the best part of NM. However NM had a lot to offer. There were lots of gates, we got into a good rhythm where we each basically opened every other gate, so I would open a gate, Kevin would catch up about the time I got it open and he would ride through to the next gate while I closed mine and got going, then I would ride through that one that he opened. It worked well and we were making good time.
The ranch land was pretty rough, This is the section where I had my first mechanical issue. I Snookered my front fender. My Xbike brothers and sisters know exactly what that means.
The problem was poor engineering on my part, I had built a steel bracket to support my KTM fender, any Xchallenge owner knows the OEM fender is really just for decoration, and does little to prevent the bike/rider from getting covered in water/mud. I guess I need to take a couple engineering classes as the bad boy snapped right off from the bumps, and probably the weight of my fender bag with spare tube and tire irons. The good thing, I got it on video.
But I secured it to the back of the bike so technically I am still legal in NM, i think.
And here it is, proof that I am a dumbass.
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So we continued on towards Cuba, stopping for water and a snack, as it is really mile after mile of nothing. We didn’t see another person for hours. Bring lots of water if you do this route!
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We roll into Cuba and it is time to call it a day. Kevin suggests we get a motel but I think the 2nd night is a little too early to wuss out and not camp.
Boy, was I wrong, because about 10 minutes after we checked in, it started to storm, and man did it storm. Thunder, lightning, pouring rain, fortunately I had walked to the gas station next door and picked up a 6 pack.
We sat outside the motel, drank beer, relived the day, enjoyed the storm like people from the desert do, and embraced the fact that I was wrong about wanting to camp.
Here is a shot of me, being wrong and happy about it.
It was a good day and we were dry, day 2 is in the books.
Wow great report! All the videos and pic is getting be excited for what I'm about to enjoy in t-minus 2 days!!! Riding south to north but only to Colorado Springs though .
Im in! Love the little stove. Never heard of such a thing. Good place to stop also. Beer and a thunderstorm!
Be sure to check out cannonshot's thread if you are riding up the CDR, as I understand part of the route we rode this day between grants and Cuba is impassable due to rain now. I saw some info posted in there last week.
Have fun and let us know how it goes.
Here is Cannonshot's thread.
Thank you much
Loving the report, keep it coming..
You are right about the front fender being cosmetic decoration only. Its as useful as a chocolate coffee pot.
Cant wait to see more pics if you got it back on or rode home with it.