2018 TAT Planning

Discussion in 'Americas' started by DeeGeeF, Feb 10, 2017.

  1. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    I did the full TAT in '10 or -11 via Sam's route, and the Western TAT recently via the new route. I personally will only use Sam's work as the other has been known to route riders thru private property and as a former land owner that is a real no no, at least on purpose. I also want to give Sam the credit for his hard work, but enough of that. As to the two routes: the "old" TAT was a lot more fun, and challenging, than the new route. The original route has a few places that an average rider will find a bit difficult, but not so much so that it should be avoided. Some good hills, rocks, stream crossings, sand here and there, and areas that are more remote. I really want to do it again. The new route is also fine, but easily rideable on a big bike. My mount for the original route was my WR250R and it was perfect. With a Safari tank there was never a fuel issue. On that trip there was one other rider on a WRR, and the third was newer to the dirt on a DRZ400. All three bikes were just fine, although the DRZ smoked us when the roads turned smooth, but was a bit harder to ride thru the sand, etc. On the new route I used my Husky TE630, and another rider doing his first realy adv ride was on a brand new Honda Africa Twin. No problem.

    I really enjoyed both rides but the original route thru the WEST was by far the best IMHO. Our group departed TN on June 15 and we took our sweet time on the trip, finishing late July. The high passes had just barely opened when we went across Colorado, and it was really cold in the high country of OR in the mornings. Some of the creeks were still running high too from Spring run-off. I would probably leave later if doing it again, early July. As to the heat, I just don't remember suffering too much even across Nevada, but then I'm from the South where it is warmish from time to time.
    #41
  2. txmxrider

    txmxrider Been here awhile

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    That's good info Blaise, thanks. My WR has an IMS 3.1 gal tank and I'll carry some additional fuel, if for no other reason than to keep the fuel level from getting below the pump. I'm just not sure how much extra I need. What size was your Safari tank? With my 3.1 tank would you recommend that I carry a 1 gallon Rotopax or 2 gallon? Also wondering what you did for food. Did you carry enough to survive a couple of days like most people suggest and if so what kind of bear precautions did you use...especially when camping? I want to travel light so would like to avoid ropes and carabiners and bear canisters. Especially bear canisters, those take up a LOT of space. And last question, how much water did you carry in addition to a hydration pack and how did you carry it?
    Thanks!
    #42
  3. speedtrials

    speedtrials Been here awhile

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    #43
  4. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    Txmxrider, I have the 3.7 gal Safari and really wouldn't want any less for adventure riding. Keeping the fuel pump covered whenever possible is a good idea, at least in my opinion, and that extra half gallon of fuel is excellent insurance. On the old route I don't remember ever running out of fuel, although it has happened a number of times on other routes. Take a small bottle of fuel when you know that you are going to push it. On the new route, I don't think fuel is an issue at all. Don't pass many gas stations when "out there". Common sense. With a 3.1, definitely carry a 1 gal. Rotopax.

    I carry a few, maybe two or three, freeze dried meals for emergency use, and plenty of instant coffee and hot chocolate for mornings and mid morning breaks on the trail. For that you need extra water, as much as you can comfortably pack. For me it is 100 oz. in my hydration pack and another 100 oz. in my luggage. The Mosko Moto bags I'm using now have a big pouch that is perfect for carrying extra water. For my old Wolfman bags, water goes inside. I can remember one time I ran out of water once (didn't have the extra in my luggage) and I don't want to do that again. Water is also useful for mixing with soap to use as bead dressing when changing fixing flats, washing out your eyes if something get in there, etc. In general food is available along the way to either eat "in", or take along for the camp fire. A Jet Boil, collapsible cup and bowl, Spork and a sharp camp knife is about all you need in the way of kitchen ware. One of the guys I regularly ride with is an absolute master at saving left overs and whipping up a tasty breakfast the next day at mid morning, usually with Ramen Noodles as a starter. We stop late morning at a "nice" spot, he works up breakfast, and someone else heats water for coffee.

    For the TAT, I wouldn't worry about bears. Not saying you couldn't find one in Colorado, Oregon or Idaho, but you are pretty far south and the chances of an encounter there isn't great. Still, I carry bear spray, and if farther north, a small hand held cannon (HEAVY!). The chances of getting the 44 Mag. out, into position and hitting anything in the case of need is extremely, that is extremely, debatable. Same for the bear spray unless you are religious about keeping it holstered on your body and not covered with gear, etc. 'Never had one, but I think that bear encounters happen FAST, and you don't get to do much planning! In real bear country a room will let you sleep better at night! Then again, you can probably camp up there all your life and never have an issue if you follow common sense precautions.
    #44
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  5. txmxrider

    txmxrider Been here awhile

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    Blaise, thanks for the great info. What you say makes good sense and I appreciate the thoughtful reply. If you don't mind me picking your brain please check back to this thread from time to time as I'm sure I'll have more questions as planning progresses. Thanks again.

    Also thank you Speedtrials. That's a great idea putting food in a dry bag and hanging it from a tree limb. Light, cheap, and easy too.
    #45
  6. speedtrials

    speedtrials Been here awhile

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    Hi guys,
    I'd like to do the TAT starting around august 2018. I'm located in Toronto and would probably pick up the TAT somewhere due south of me. I've been discussing with another Canadian fella but he might not be up for doing the entire route in one shot so here I am throwing my hat into this thread to see if there is someone with a similar timing and interest. I'd like to do the whole thing then book it back east via uhaul or similar. Although (of course) I want to enjoy the ride, my time is also limited, so I'd prefer to finish the route in as fast a time as comfortably possible.

    I'm on a wr250r.

    Thanks,
    Nick
    #46
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  7. txmxrider

    txmxrider Been here awhile

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    There will be three of us leaving Trinidad CO on Sunday July 29, all on WR 250s. Maybe we'll see you out there somewhere.
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  8. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    You are leaving at a good time, and from a good place! We stayed in Raton, NM, as there were good places to motel, and to leave our trucks and trailers (the police dept. parking lot is a good option and I've used them twice now), and we wanted to go over the mountains via Sugarite State Park, and on to hit the TAT just east of Trinidad. That route was fun!
    #48
  9. SOLOKLR

    SOLOKLR Back to work

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    My son and I are leaving out of Tucson headed for the east coast early June. From there we will take a little over a month to cruise the TAT. We are planning a mix of camping and hotels when we stink too much. If we're too early for the passes in Colorado it's ok. We did the COBDR 2 summers ago. No interstate travel for us since his bike just can't do it. Riding older KLRs, mine a 650, his a KLR 250.
    See you guys out there.
    #49
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  10. ButchCoolidge

    ButchCoolidge Adventurer

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    I did a solo ride last year in late August. I parked my truck in Amarillo and rode north to Boise City, Ok to get on the TAT. I went as far as Moab, spent two nights there then slabbed back to the truck. My GPS crapped out on me my second day in Colorado and the next day I lost my wallet :fpalm. Still thankfully I had no bike troubles and no injuries. I'm taking what I learned last year and planning on starting from Moab to the coast this year. Haven't decided when I'm starting yet. I know it was hot as balls in Moab when I was there end of Aug. I would like to go earlier in the year. I just don't know what would be to early for Oregon.
    #50
  11. SOLOKLR

    SOLOKLR Back to work

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    Good choice turning back. Learned my lesson when I forgot to tell the CC company I was going on a trip. They cut me off in the middle of nowhere with no backup.
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  12. txmxrider

    txmxrider Been here awhile

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    You are leaving at a good time, and from a good place! We stayed in Raton, NM, as there were good places to motel, and to leave our trucks and trailers (the police dept. parking lot is a good option and I've used them twice now), and we wanted to go over the mountains via Sugarite State Park, and on to hit the TAT just east of Trinidad. That route was fun!

    Thanks for the tip about parking. I wasn't sure yet how we were going to deal with that but that's a good option if they'll oblige us for a couple of weeks.
    #52
  13. Dirt = Life

    Dirt = Life Living of water, loving on dirt.

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    I am leaving NY in the middle of July so i should be out there some time beginning August.
    Hope to see you on the trail.
    #53
  14. ZiaThunder

    ZiaThunder Go big or go home

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    I'm toying with the idea of riding the sections of TAT from NM to NC at the end of April. I'm heading out there for a Tiger Ride In, figured I've got 6 days to get there, why not make it more interesting.

    From what I've been reading, it seems like those are pretty easy sections, maybe even a tad on the boring side...
    #54
  15. Parx400

    Parx400 Long timer Supporter

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    I know its not on the Tat anymore ( lame) but does anyone have the GPS coordinates for the red cabin everyone use to sign on the Nevada Tat? The one in the picture attached.

    Attached Files:

    #55
  16. speedtrials

    speedtrials Been here awhile

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    This brings up something i was wondering about: why is the TAT always described as east-to-west. Is that just because the gpx tracks are in that direction? Or is there as reason it can't be run west-to-east?
    #56
  17. ZiaThunder

    ZiaThunder Go big or go home

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    #57
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  18. GregDavidL

    GregDavidL Been here awhile

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    The original TAT route was on a paper roll and written east to west. Paper roll from the rally world? This was prior to the GPS routes being available. So it was very hard to reverse the direction of travel. I have not ridden the TAT (yet), but I found this out during my research about it.
    #58
  19. ButchCoolidge

    ButchCoolidge Adventurer

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    I always heard that riding the TAT from west to east could possibly cause a tear in the space time continuum. Something like that could pose a risk of someone riding between two dimensions.
    #59
  20. speedtrials

    speedtrials Been here awhile

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    Sam says "Do not even think about attempting to navigate from west to east."

    guys...gulp....i've thought about it :kboom

    ok seriously thou, are offroad trails ever "one way" or something? Is that even a thing? I am i noob so excuse my ignorance
    #60