Seattle to Argentina on a KLR650

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by OZYMANDIAS, May 7, 2006.

  1. OZYMANDIAS

    OZYMANDIAS RIP, Clayton...

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    33
    Hello Friends-
    Finally! Everything is coming together and it looks like I’ll be leaving today. My plan is to stay with a friend in Portland the first night and try to make Salt Lake City by the third. Then I’ll take a bit of time to see Bryce, Zion, and the Grand Canyon, visit a friend in Tucson, and cross the border at Nogales. I’ve now read a number of books on motorcycle travel in general and riding in Central and South America in particular, and I think I have a good leg up on things. Special thanks to Glen Heggstad and Gregory Frazier for writing their excellent and informative books.
    All I can really report on now is what the preparation has been like, and there is no question that there was a great deal of work involved. At certain times it felt like a full-time job. I’m a novice rider, and have been pleasantly surprised by how much support I’ve received from the motorcycling community. You all have given me much valuable advice, and two new friends I made, Glen and Carl, have done a lot to help me get the bike properly upgraded- thanks guys.
    The upgrades have been pretty extensive, but have already started to show their value. I never realized just how many things could be improved on a stock motorcycle. Glen, Carl, and I went off-roading a week ago, and I must have dumped the bike at least five times. With the improvements, the bike came out more or less unscathed, though I was a little beat up by the end of the day. It was a good learning experience, however, and I now have a better idea of my limits on the bike. My strategy on the trip is to play things very conservatively, for I haven’t yet developed the skill to be pushing any limits.
    For those of you who might someday be interested in doing some touring yourselves, I'm posting a list of the things I bought and their costs below. This doesn't include the cost of buying beer and pizza for the guys who helped me work on my bike! I’ll also keep track of my budget along the way. I project I should be able to average around $35 per day if I’m careful, but time will tell.
    All the best to everyone, and I’ll write again soon. Here's my website again if anyone is interested:
    http://www.houseofatreus.net
    Clayton


    $2950 2001 Kawasaki KLR650
    $123.25 Bike Registration
    $157.20 Sub-Frame Upgrade, Radiator Guard, Water Pump Guard
    $20 Adventure Motorcycling Handbook
    $24.97 CO2 Kit for Tires
    $31 Spanish CD’s
    $16 Spanish Book
    $12.79 Iron Zip Ties
    $100 Motorcycle Safety Course
    $82.85 Hand Guards Maier
    $289.58 Immunizations, Bug Repellant
    $1140 Pannier Boxes, Shift Lever, Skid Plate, Foot Pegs, Doohickey Upgrade Kit, Master Cylinder Guard, Clutch and Brake Levers, Chain Lube, Carburetor Vent Kit
    $50.12 Low-Profile Oil Plug, Oil Cap and Wrench
    $22.41 Thread Locker
    $16.98 Fuses, Tie-Down Straps, Razor Knife, WD40
    $250.20 Tent, Thermarest, Kayak Bag, Platypus
    $262.01 Armored Textile Jacket
    $25 Motorcycle Endorsement Fee
    $27.15 Gloves
    $11.71 Oil
    $98.16 Liteguard, Speed Bleeders, Water Pump Seal, Oil Seal, Mirror Mount, Throttle Rocker, Quicksteel, Grips, Threebond
    $58.58 Spanish Books / Motorcycle Books
    $44.21 1 Gig Camera Memory Card
    $16.55 Metric Wrenches, ¼’ Drive Ratchet, Allen Keys
    $532.32 First Gear Riding Pants, Glove Liners, Gore-Tex Riding Gloves, Textile Motocross Gloves, Spare Fork Seals, Tire Patch Kit, Neck Warmer, Fog-Off, Stretch-n-Seal Tape, Wire Couplers, Oil Filter, Chain Breaker, Spoke Wrench, Spark Plug, Tire Levers, In-Line Fuel Filter, Spare Clutch Cable, Spare Throttle Cables, Spare Bulbs, Chain Lube, Grease, Metric Wrenches
    $348 Velcro Straps, Tape, Tank Bag and Accessories, Motorcycling Books
    $264.10 Corbin Seat, Mirror Vibration Dampeners
    $25.97 130/90W H4 Halogen Bulb, Spare Fuel Filter
    $20 Larger Kickstand Base
    $52.29 Threadlocker, Snap Ring Pliers, Miscellaneous Hardware
    $14.42 Small Vise Grips
    $208.84 Progressive Fork Springs, High-Temperature Bulb Socket, Brake Saver, Bar Snake, Headlight Cutoff Switch, Fork Oil
    $15 Spare Passport Photos
    $10.87 Tire Pump
    $5 Miscellaneous Hardware
    $15 Toiletries / Medication
    $21.76 International Driver’s Permit, Brazil / Uruguay Driver’s Permit
    $180.39 Boots, Straps, Compass, Mosquito Net, Tent Pegs, Tent Repair Kit
    $15 Parts for Tool Tube
    $16.31 Rechargeable Batteries
    $10.88 Alteration to Pants
    $4.33 Hose Clamps
    $13.03 Disposable Cameras
    $36.49 Spare Face Shield, Mirror Eyeballs
    $266.48 Spark Plugs, Spill-Proof Battery, Brake Bracket, Counter Sprocket Retaining Plate, Front and Rear Monster Tubes, Spare Countershaft Sprocket
    $7907.20 Total
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    #1
  2. crossfit_rider

    crossfit_rider Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2006
    Oddometer:
    25
    Good luck on your adventure!!! :clap I look forward to seeing pics and reading some updates. Be careful and try to keep the rubber side down.:thumb

    Tony
    #2
  3. Flyingavanti

    Flyingavanti With the Redhead on Back!

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,550
    You will have a GREAT time........
    #3
  4. RetrogradE

    RetrogradE Banned

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,226
    Location:
    Cap City, Utah
    Let me know if you need a place to stay in SLC.

    Steven
    #4
  5. VDG

    VDG Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,348
    Location:
    Brazil
    Do you have plans to pass on Brazil?
    #5
  6. freeflow

    freeflow get in or go in

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    Oddometer:
    16,379
    Location:
    GB-Wisconsin
    have a safe trip....write often...and alot of pics

    the bike is dialed up for sure



    EDIT: 9/18/2008 ! ATTENTION N00B READERS!!!!!!!!!!!. PLEASE READ THIS ENTIRE THREAD BEFORE POSTING.
    #6
  7. Hayduke

    Hayduke ///SAFETY THIRD/// Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Oddometer:
    44,207
    Location:
    Salida, coloRADo
    :thumb Keep us posted
    #7
  8. Juice Box

    Juice Box Got Ink?

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,905
    Location:
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
    +1 :freaky

    #8
  9. iamcanjim

    iamcanjim Face drop

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    756
    Location:
    Cape Breton, NS
    I wanna go. Could you delay leaving until June 25? :D :wink:
    #9
  10. boxermoose

    boxermoose Now fully goosed

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2003
    Oddometer:
    2,852
    Location:
    Gulf Coast TX
    Best of luck doode - I sincerly hope you have a great time - you've obviously done a lot of planing.

    When all is said and done I'd love to see the equiptment list broken down into what was used/unused, thrown away or added
    #10
  11. Deano955

    Deano955 Insatiable

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    4,058
    Location:
    Eames Lounge Adv'er
    :thumb

    :lurk
    #11
  12. AndyT

    AndyT Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Oddometer:
    578
    I'm doing the same basic trip, starting in about 2 months, keep us posted.
    #12
  13. Spades

    Spades n00b

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Toronto
    good luck man! I'm riding a KLR to Panama this summer, so I'm very interested in how you're trip goes. What kind of luggage are you using? Are you using any GPS stuff?

    ride safe, all the best.
    #13
  14. GB

    GB . Administrator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    57,309
    Location:
    Toronto
    Good luck and keep us up to date on your adventure. Safe ride :thumb

    :lurk
    #14
  15. salcar

    salcar Riding 4 Health

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,081
    Location:
    Nicaragua or Mexico or ?
    I'll be following your trip very closely.. i'm leaving in August. Maybe we meet up somewhere down south... looking forward to reading your updates:clap
    #15
  16. OZYMANDIAS

    OZYMANDIAS RIP, Clayton...

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    33
    Hi Everyone-
    Thanks for all of the well-wishes. I left late, and made it to Vancouver as planned, though at 12:30 at night. It was my longest motorcycle ride yet, at about 175 miles, and I experienced freezing my ass off for the first time too. I stopped and ran laps around a parking lot, and it was remarkable how much being cold affected my coordination. I spent the night at a friend's and will head for Salt Lake City shortly. Some of you expressed interest in the trip, what gear I end up using, etc. I'll do my best to keep everyone informed, and to answer questions. For the person who asked, I'm using Happy Trail panniers with kayak bags atop each. I need to figure out how I'm going to get some pictures up here, and hope to do so soon. I'm burning daylight, so it's time to boogie. Clayton
    #16
  17. El-Dracho

    El-Dracho Africa Twin RD07a

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    48
    Location:
    Germany
    Hi,

    Have a nice trip and keep us posted! Hope to see some wonderful pics soon :clap

    Good ride and take care!

    Greetings from across the pond

    Bjoern
    #17
  18. seadirt

    seadirt n00b

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    5
    I have recently purchased a GS, & am all smiles. I opted for the low seat because of my inseam,but am still not satisfied. I do like the seat height for off roading, but on long hyway trips am uncomfortable (all my garmets gather up in my crouch). Does anyone have any suggestions on aftermarket, or custom seats?? I love your site, have been following Dale & Sandys travels in SA, met them in Chile.

    Steve
    #18
  19. OZYMANDIAS

    OZYMANDIAS RIP, Clayton...

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    33
    Hi Everyone-
    I'm in Las Vegas, and before you ask, yes, the showgirls are of course all over me. What woman can resist a smelly, dirty guy of the mean-looking bike? Things have been going well so far. I have met people who have been very friendly and generous to me- one guy, Jason, gave me $50 toward the trip. I stayed at a hotel one night, and camped another two. I saw Bryce and Zion, and both were awesome. Zion was wonderful to ride through- you go right through the bottom of a canyon, with amazing rock formations rising on all sides. Also, about the first 50 miles of I-15 on the way to Vegas is cool as hell. I rode it wearing nothing but a pair of shorts, sneakers, and sunglasses, and it was then, going about 80 with the landscape stretching out around me and bugs crack-popping all over my body, that I for the first time really felt like an adventurer. I'm here at a friend's to replace my chain and sprockets, something I should have done before I left as it is the original chain with 11,000 miles on it. Then it is to check out the Hoover Dam, to Phoenix, Tucson, Tombstone, and then Viva Mexico! I'm keeping detailed notes and will put it all together when I get back. Maybe it will turn into a book. I still haven't figured out the picture thing, but hope to soon. Adios for now, amigos. Clayton
    P.S. BTW, I ran out of gas once, and tipping the bike on its left side really does work. It got me about 3.2 extra miles to a gas station, which I camped behind and filled up at in the morning.
    #19
  20. OZYMANDIAS

    OZYMANDIAS RIP, Clayton...

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    33
    Hi Everyone-
    I got to Tucson last night and stayed at a friend's house. I'm going to look for a new rear tire and some other things today, and tomorrow I'll cross over into Mexico at Nogales. If anyone has any advice about where to stay and what to see, I'll be glad to get it. I'm thinking to head south from Nogales until I hit the coast, and then to follow it the whole way. No real plan thus far- just keep moving south to Guatemala. I'm guessing it will take me a while to cross Mexico, because I don't anticipate being able to make the same kind of mileage I have in the US, but time will tell. I saw my first Joshua tree and my first Saguaro yesterday, and many other interesting desert plants. Also, it is hot as hell down here! I feel like I'm riding into a hairdryer half the time. Well, it's time for the real adventure to begin. I'll be in touch. Clayton
    #20