Ca Southern BDR

Discussion in 'West – California, the desert southwest and whatev' started by 805gregg, Jan 16, 2019.

  1. 805gregg

    805gregg Long timer

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    I just watched the video of the So. section of the CaBDR. I'm a little dissapointed in the route, they made it the hardest of all BDR's, all desert, ignoring our beautiful mountains. The route was ridden by a bunch of experts, Baja racing and Dakar riders, not your average rider, they made it through, with 2 out with injures, and one guy with a monsterous GS got hurt and had to have an expert ride his bike through that section. Not what I was expecting as a 70 YO solo rider it would be tough to do this route, too bad as we have so many potential roads in this huge state.
    #1
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  2. nrvale0

    nrvale0 Been here awhile

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    Interesting. Without having any familiarity with effort, I have to wonder if they were locked out of the mountains by environmental concerns.?.
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  3. Carlos Thomas

    Carlos Thomas Fast not Furious

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    The CABDR South Route as you look at it on the map, there is no way to avoid desert & rocks. Also it was designed as a “Winter Time” route. So anything at high elevations will have issues with snow.

    I watched the video. I don’t think the route is difficult. I think it is a intermediate route overall. I think what made it harder was most of the folks were north of 600lbs (Bike + Fuel + Gear). That is a lot of weight in off road conditions.

    I believe the CABDR North Route will be more scenic because it will/should go through the Sierra Nevada Moutains. But I will tell you this, with that beauty comes more difficulty. The Sierra Nevada Moutains require a lot of elevation changes. If folks are going to look to do this on larger adventure bikes, they will struggle more than likely.

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  4. desertdaves

    desertdaves DesertDave

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    We ride these deserts all the time in SOCAL, and yes, the sand in the washes SUCK! But you put on a stabilizer, air down the tires, (the right tires!!) and you can do it with big bikes. As for the BDR trail, I think they could have made it A LOT more interesting coming up from the border. There are a lot of trails that head north through Julian, and the surrounding areas. But, it is still a great ride, and it does give you a lot of dirt to cover!
    Good luck to the riders hitting the new BDR trails!
    #4
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  5. RonSJC

    RonSJC Been here awhile

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    I was the guy on the 701 Husky and by no means an expert, intermediate at best. Oh and at 62 I'm not that far behind you :). Although I will admit, every year shit gets harder to do. We tried to stay out of the mountains as this was designed to be the 1st BDR that could (weather permitting) be ridden during the winter. I think by riding a lighter bike and not camping so as to lighten the load would make the route easier (that's why I went with the 701). But, I would not recommend doing this route solo. Too much can go wrong out there and temps can change dramatically. Finally, if you pick up the Butler Map you will see that there are lots of "bail outs" to easier dirt or pavement if you are short on time or are looking for something less challenging.

    We are scouting the CABDR-North and that will be through our "beautiful mountains", in fact some of the areas we have scouted have drop dead gorgeous riding, and is shaping up to be an easier route. Unfortunately it's a few years out.
    Ron
    #5
  6. Zubb

    Zubb he went that-a-way...

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    I plan to do this on my 1150 GSA. will take only minimal camp gear to keep weight down. I would call myself a lower intermediate skilled sand rider. Can't wait!
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  7. RonSJC

    RonSJC Been here awhile

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    Not really, mainly trying to avoid higher elevations for a winter route. Even still, some of the alternate sections do get pretty high in elevation and, while we were able to do the entire route last couple of winters scouting (we filmed beginning 1st of April) this winter is shaping up differently. But, I will say riding the deserts after a rain, is worth putting on an extra layer!
    #7
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  8. RandyM

    RandyM Less talk, More ride

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    We get a lot of posts from people looking for a place to ride in the winter. This could possibly work well for out of state riders looking for an epic dirt ride in the winter. There could be some interesting learning experiences from riders encountering their first sand wash on a rental GS. The main sections of the route that I am familiar with mostly look to be reasonable choices for big bikes.
    #8
  9. bigdog99

    bigdog99 Weaned and neutered

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    I got my DVD/map last week. I think the route looks great. I started dirt riding in the '60s around the Antelope Valley area. Done a lot of B-V, etc and riding around what is now the Mojave Preserve and of course Death Valley, etc. I like the route selections overall. As far as sand, etc, ADVriders are just going to have to learn to deal with it. It just takes practice. If you are on a BMW you have to learn to ride with your clutch out or in, they won't take a lot of slipping.

    The back way into Tecopa is a nice route. Somewhat surprised that Butte Valley/Goler Wash to Ballarat wasn't offered as a hard-way, but then it would be a lot of miles to Titus. Wyman Cyn/Silver Creek hard way is a great ride. I first did that with Jerry Counts/Countdown years ago and it is still a favorite.

    When you link up the North from Benton HS, the trails to Mt Patterson would make excellent hard-ways. I've had my GS at the top several times. Bodie, Masonic, Lucky-Boy, Risue then over to the west slope through Georgetown, Grass Valley, Quincy, Warners, Cedarville. Those are my favorites, but there's a lot to choose from.

    I've been doing the big-bike off road riding since my R80PD days in the mid-'80s. I have a couple of friends and used to make it a point to try all the "un-doable" stuff. We learned to just help each other through the rough parts when necessary. I have bull-dogged my GS many-many times. I have stacked rocks for an hour or two to get through a bad spot in the trail or a creek. Anybody considering this BDR, just get out and try it. Worst case is you backtrack and find another way around. It's part of the Adventure.
    #9
  10. uncle milkbone

    uncle milkbone Been here awhile

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    Search for "Pacific Crest Quest". Check out the trip report about it. I rode most of it between Bend Oregon and Yosemite a few years ago. It's a scenic, fun mostly doubletrack or fsr route that could be more like what you're looking for (at least the OR and northern CA part I rode was!).
    #10
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  11. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

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    Some in the film weren't expert off road riders and some were. You don't need to be an expert to ride sand but you do need to learn how to ride it. I ride Baja with friends from back east and for the first few days, they can't hang in the sand. By the end of the week, they're having so much fun in the sand I can't hang. Light makes sand easier so as mentioned hotel it rather than carrying camping gear and ride a smaller moto. We're also having a relatively wet winter and wet sand is not only easier to ride but big time fun. I plan to give all the sections a go on my 1290 which is not light (cue Captain Obvious commercial) as long as I have someone along to help pick it up. I'll try the hard options but if you check out the route, the harder parts have easier bypasses. Lastly, the desert has it's own beauty and after riding the route, you may not prefer the desert to mountains but you'll gain a new appreciation for desert beauty.
    #11
  12. bigdog99

    bigdog99 Weaned and neutered

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    The most dangerous thing on an "adventure" bike is when you get on a long straight that's pretty firm and then drop off into a wash or hit a sandy spot. It's easy to get up to 50+ mph. These big bikes will auger into the sand (especially when you roll off the throttle) and will toss you right over the front and break your neck. I was on the '94 GS Rendezvous when a guy on a PD was killed exactly like that. I have friends who have fractured their necks. If you aren't familiar with a road keep your speed down so that you have time to react. Better to be safe than sorry if you are doing sand for the first time.

    In the DVD the woman rider on the xchallenge had so much weight in luggage on the rear of the bike that it was tail-wagging all over the place. Very hard to control. My old GS is about unrideable when loaded like that.
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  13. TemeculaTim

    TemeculaTim Timiteo Viejo

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    #13
  14. blt4bja

    blt4bja Been here awhile

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    Jeff, do you still have the same Cell number? I'll ride with you!
    #14
  15. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

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    Howdy Dan,
    I do have the same number but no more 950SE - just the great white whale (1290SA T) If you're going to be helping me pick it up, it's a lot heavier. :knary Let's ride!!! Is your cell still the same? BTW, I ride the freeway loop most weeks usually with Bryan from Checkers in case you're interested.
    #15
  16. Patj551

    Patj551 Motorcycle & Empowerment Coach

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    Just finished watching the video. “The woman, Inna Thorn didn’t have any more weight on her bike than the others. They were camping off their bikes. Full saddle bags and dry bag on top is pretty standard.

    Yes, riding a fully loaded bikes in sand is a challenge. I’m just not sure why you singled out Inna. Clearly she simply was “pulling her own weight”

    Looks like a fun route! I really appreciated @RonSJC’s local perspective and historical perspective. I’ll be riding this early Feb. looking forward to some fun!
    #16
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  17. RonSJC

    RonSJC Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the kind words! Yes, Inna's bike was not loaded any different than the rest of us. We each carried our own gear prepared for an 8 day ride. Including our own camping gear, food for Breakfast and lunch and tools, etc. We did have a support vehicle, but that was primarily for the Film crew (all rode bikes) so they could charge all the camera and drone battery's from a generator on the jeeps roof and off- load data. We camped 6 nights. 1st night in a state park campground and 5th night in a Death Valley campground, the other 4 were dry camping (not in campgrounds). We were fortunate, Mike (who drove the jeep) cooked dinner for us every evening, and were some of the best camping dinner's I've ever had. He would leave camp early in the AM (we cooked our own breakfast) so he could run to a local store, pick up fresh food for dinner and take primarily pavement until he could track back on dirt to meet us at the next gps location for the evening. He would also stock up on firewood and cold beer, so evenings were really special. About the time we rolled into camp, Mike had dinner on the grill or stove and by the time we had camp set up, amazing dinners were served. And the film crew was amazing too, I heard they shot over 60 hours of video in 8 days that got edited down to the 70 min that ended up in the film. The logistics and planning that goes into each of these routes and films is quite a remarkable thing to behold.
    #17
  18. Patj551

    Patj551 Motorcycle & Empowerment Coach

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    Just in case you’re wondering, Inna Thorn is the Operations Director for the entire Backcountry Discovery Operation. I’m sure she and many others are mostly “back ground s/heros” responsible for putting everything together. Huge respect and appreciation for @Inna Thorn! Thank you. None of the BDRs would happen without you!
    #18
  19. Rips Millar

    Rips Millar capt. mediocre

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    Do you have Mikes ph #?
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  20. FrankLord

    FrankLord ADVrider

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    Good spot. I kinda noticed that about her as well. Seemed to be struggling more than the others, whether it was packed the same or not. And packing it the same may have been an issue. Gotta understand your bike and how to best pack it for your body weight, riding position, tendencies etc. Can't just load it and go.
    #20
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