2 up to UAE on a KTM990

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Vicks, Oct 2, 2008.

  1. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

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    we were originally planning to ride to Jordan and visit wadi-rum, petra etc, but luck bit us in the behind :rofl and we had to switch to plan-b.

    So, the nearest and easiest place to visit was UAE/Oman and we left for UAE. We had been preparing for quite some time and we were all set for our first long ride, together on the 990S.

    The packing was done, all the gear laid out. We were supposed to have an early start, by 4:30AM, which turned to 5:30 soon !!!
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    It was great to have the KTM luggage.
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    the home made rear rack would serve to hold the bag & tent
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    This was also the first time i was riding fully loaded, 2-up with the bags, wife and the rear rack. So, i strapped the bags up with a tie down for some extra piece of mind.
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    We were supposed to ride approx 450kms to the Saudi-UAE border, which was again a first time for us. So, we started off from home and met up with some fog on the desert highway.
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    visibility was as bad as a few feet at places and i was constantly slowing down to 30-40kmph.

    we stopped at a few spots for some pics in the fog
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    #1
  2. GB

    GB . Administrator Super Moderator Super Supporter

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    :thumb

    :lurk :lurk
    #2
  3. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

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    so, we stopped a few times for gas and as good as it was early in the morning, riding thru the cool fog on the highway, it was getting sunny and hot now.
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    we kept some steady speeds and crossed the border into UAE without much trouble, thankfully :clap :clap
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    this pic was taken just after the border crossing and man, was it hot !!! and i was sweating my way to glory :rofl
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    soon, it was noon and we had a small bite at a gas station and rode on,


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    but it was soooo hot that we decided to stop over at a roadside shelter and take some rest.
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    we slept for a while on the bench and it felt good to be relaxed.
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    after some more riding interspersed with liberal stops for re-fueling :D we stopped at a stop with some nice trees on the road side. It was welcome respite from the searing heat of the sun and the hot, moist air from the sea.
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    some more steady speeds and time spent on the plank seat ofthe KTM, and the sun slowly settled.
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    #3
  4. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

    Joined:
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    we reached Sharjah and stayed at the youth hostel for a night. I managed to get the bike inside the gates and park her in the safety of the compound so that i could have some peaceful sleep in the night.

    next morning i woke up early and took some pics of ... well...my baby :D :D
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    this was our first days mileage in approx 15hrs of riding with breaks in between and truth be told, the Mrs. was most understanding and cool abt all the PIA that the KTM seat gave her (and me too). Gotta love the girl. :raabia :wings :crash
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    so we started out and rode around town looking at stuff generally. I mounted up one of the side cases to be able to carry some stuff around, however odd it looked/felt. As you will see later, It was a good idea.
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    after a while, we found a quite place to eat (some sub's) and neaby was this odd looking, enclosure, which resembled a ... bus stop (from the sign board)
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    upon closed looking we realised they were Air-Conditioned bus stops !!!! I guess its needed for the 50+ DegC temperatures you find in the middle-east.:eek1 :eek1
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    #4
  5. pirahna

    pirahna Long timer

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    :lurk
    #5
  6. Saeed

    Saeed Life-long learner

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    Nice collection pictures<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    #6
  7. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

    Joined:
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    we then proceeded to view a few more things in around the place and moved into Dubai.
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    the Dubai creek
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    we had to park the bike here and explore the creek on foot. The day was HOT and we couldn't walk around in the jackets or with the helmets in hand. This is where the single side case and my home made "dual helmet locking kit" :rofl solution came in !!!!

    The side case took in the jackets
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    and the helmets were handled easily too....
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    and by evening, we generally loafed around and had a fun time
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    this shop sells smoking devices which use charcoal to burn flavoured tobacco, which is then passed thru water and makes a gud.. gud.. gud.. sound when u take a puff.
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    and the Big Blue found an unlikely stable mate at the parking lot.
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    tomorrow ... we leave for the beach town of Fujairah and pass through some very nice mountain roads.
    #7
  8. HydroXidE

    HydroXidE Adventurer

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    FANTASTIC !!!!!

    Way to go man!
    #8
  9. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

    Joined:
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    We put up at the youth hostel which is the most bang for the buck in an expensive city like Dubai. The rooms were nice, service was good and the price was fabulous. In the morning we packed our stuff
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    and started off towards the east coast city of Fujairah.
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    Soon, the desert roads grew mountainous and i was getting restless in anticiapation
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    On the way, we passed by these shops selling carpets and stuff like that. pretty neat eh ?
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    more shops selling various stuff
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    We took a few breaks on the way to escape the heat/sun
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    slowly, the sun settled down and it grew a li'l cooler. We had plans to reach the local youth hostel and get out for a little riding around town after dumping all the gear in th room. The sunsets were beautiful too.
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    After reaching the hostel and a li'l freshening up, we went around town and saw some old forts. The access to these places were by dirt tracks/dried up river beds and i was happy to ride there, only to be gently reminded a few times by SWMBO that we were riding 2-up. Its so easy to get carried away on this bike and start riding as if you are in a rally :lol3 !!!
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    #9
  10. AusStealth

    AusStealth Bohican

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    Love the snaps; things have changed so much since I was in the UAE. In those days it was hard to get permission to own a 4WD, never mind a bike like the 990.
    #10
  11. mantan

    mantan Been here awhile

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    :thumb My cousins who grew up in UAE/Dubai tell me that the traffic is sucidal but in your pics the streets look nearly empty.
    #11
  12. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

    Joined:
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    hey thx guys ..... i hope you are enjoying the pics.

    I guess time have changed indeed. You can pretty much buy whatever you want provided you can cough up the moolah :rofl

    the traffic was better only in Sharjah, Dubai being its usual bustly self, more so with the construction work going on for the new metro.

    To come .. we ride the fabulous wadis (dry river beds) & mountain roads near Fujariah and in Jebel Hafeet.
    #12
  13. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

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    So, we start from the Fujairah youth hostel (we had to pay the full price of a 6 bunk bed room even though we were only two !!!) in the morning for what would be a relaxed ride of approx 200kms for the entire day.
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    The plan was to see a lot of archeological sites and other places of interest while we were riding towards the desert Oasis town of Al-Ain.

    one of the town round-abouts in Fujairah
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    The mountain roads begin and it was fun once again :clap
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    Shortly afterwards, we come across an off road track and we explore it a little
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    we also meet up with some local residents.. of the four legged kind
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    and some behemoths of the mechanical kind :eek1 :eek1
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    #13
  14. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

    Joined:
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    some more riding in the river beds
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    we then caught up with the highway and hit tarmac to head towards some other dirt tracks. Somewhere on the way i see a sign board, for which i had to take a U-turn and i slowed down to walking pace and prepared to make the turn. And then it happened. 200kg bike + 20ltrs of Gasoline + 60kgs of luggage + a pillion = more than what my legs can handle. So, knowing that i can hold the bike up, i gently, very very gently layed her down on the road on her left side and it took both of us quite some effort to pick her back up !!!

    damage was only a dent on the left Gobi case
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    we stopped by the road for some damage examination and a general check up of leaks / scratches on the bike. There were none :clap
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    we also visited some other archeological sites via dirt tracks. Worth mentioning here is the handling of the KTM. The superior components quality and suspension/chassis geometry shows its Dakar/Rally elements. At times i was riding pretty decent speeds on the dry river beds and dirt tracks with fist sized rocks, gravel, sand, loose dirt with small rocks etc and not once did the bike feel wanting in the handling department. Man I love this bike :clap
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    we also met some cute camels
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    we then headed to the Oasis town of Al-Ain. This is a neat town wth quite a bit of greenery. Lots of date palm and vegetable farms.
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    a fruit borne date palm tree
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    this town also had a few forts, towers and such stuff
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    and we had some sweets for the local ant guys
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    #14
  15. E-man

    E-man 4-4-09, 12-6-09, 1-13-10

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    Mr. Vick, thanks for the wonderful pics.
    It seems that there is a lot of color in the area. I mean its all background desert color but the buildings are all very bright.
    very nice
    #15
  16. MotoChron

    MotoChron Got Dirt?! Supporter

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    Cool pics and trip, thanks for sharing!

    Chris
    #16
  17. BriKielyGSman

    BriKielyGSman BigBadBri

    Joined:
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    Don't feel bad about laying it down. Eventually it wil happen to everyone. Not too much damage done from the looks of it.

    Good job.

    Brian
    #17
  18. Vicks

    Vicks gets stuck in sand

    Joined:
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    thx for the feedback guys. mucho appreciated.

    well, abt laying down the bike, i knew that it would happen one day, but it hurt a wee little bit neverthless :cry . Hell, i'm planning to do a rally raid event in 2010 on the Big Blue, i hope i won't cry when i lay/crash her then:huh

    getting on with our ride, we spent our time in the oasis for some more time and then headed towards the mountain road of jebel (Arabic for mountain)hafeet. This mountain road is an absolute blast and when i drove my car in 2007 on this road, it was a revelation for me. I was since then, scheming on riding this road, which i was sure would be nothing short of Nirvana.

    foothills of the Hafeet mountain.
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    climbing up
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    at one of the stops on-route the summit
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    After reaching the summit of this mountain road, we slept for a while and refreshed ourselves. We would go back into town for the evening for some food stuff and then come back by night to the foothills of the mountain for a little bit of camping and eating out.

    this is how the road looks like by night. its so beautifull that i was singing "stairway to heaven" all along :D
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    and we also met up with this cute guy
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    then we cooked up some soup and noodles for dinner at a park in the foothills.
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    #18
  19. sixer

    sixer I suffer from Ainrofilac

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    #19
  20. Timmer

    Timmer Curious Adventurer

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    Thanks for taking us to places I probably wouldn't be able to go to.

    :clap:clap
    #20