Crossing Dakota

Discussion in 'Central – From Da Nort Woods to the Plane States' started by Black Hills, Mar 18, 2016.

  1. wbbnm

    wbbnm Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,705
    Location:
    MN and NM
    Nice to hear there is a lot of interest in this. I certainly want to do it sometime next year, maybe even riding out and back. I'm retired and can make it about any time given a month or so notice.
    #41
  2. Black Hills

    Black Hills Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2,013
    Location:
    Western South Dakota
    even if you don't do the "official" trail, there is a ton of great riding here.
    #42
  3. DirtFarmer

    DirtFarmer Has anyone seen my mother

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,113
    Location:
    Kansas
    I have been holding back my comments about bike selection. Not everyone has a stable of bikes to select from, especially true when it comes to a self supported small bikes and I don't want to dissuade anyone from going.

    We did the DaKal last year, jumping off on June 7th. Hill City had flash flooding on June 6th.

    http://www.blackhillsfox.com/home/h...Hill-City-causes-road-closures-306392751.html

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Four of us went, all of us have been riding a long time. We had two XR 650's, WR 250R and a 990. 3 of us have many days of riding together in remote - technical areas.

    We were apprehensive the first day due to all the road closures. We did the northern loop first and 15 miles into the trip we came to a washed out bridge. A quick look at the maps and we came up with an alternative route that only took up about 6 miles before it dumped us back out on the DaKal route.

    Side Note - We highlighted the entire route on maps. Most of the northern loop had to be done on a Gazetteer and we did this as a group one night at my kitchen table. It was easy to translate the tracks using City Navigator to the hard copy maps. This also added to the fun of planning the trip. We used these maps 4 times to help us with road closures.

    You would think that we would have had a hard time with the mud, but we really didn't. The first morning we did have a few problems and one of the 650's and the 990 had to retreat and meet up with us 10 miles down the road.

    We got lucky.

    Most of the route seems to dry out enough to ride fairly quickly, within a day or two.

    A lot of the Dakal could not be ridden or ridden at greatly reduced speeds with big bikes during wet conditions.

    It never rained on us until the last day when we were riding from Hot Springs to Hill City. That day is all weather gravel roads and hard ball.

    I had great time. 3 of us are going to do a big bike camping trip next year to some of the areas that we traveled in the Black Hills. The forestry roads and camps are the gem of the Black Hills and no one is there.

    Heavy loaded WR;

    [​IMG]

    The Cheyenne River crossing (you can see signs of the flash flood 3 days prior);

    [​IMG]

    My camp at Custer National Forest, I don't think it gets better than this;

    [​IMG]
    #43
  4. Iffykid

    Iffykid Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,551
    Location:
    Blaine,Mn
    May and September appear to be the best 2mths to do this, Why do more people seem to do Sept?
    I wouldn't mind doing Sept but don't want to give up Northshore Shindig either.
    #44
  5. FirstPath

    FirstPath Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,742
    Location:
    Formerly Shoreview, MN
    Less heat, less rain, Less spring mud, post labor-day traffic and tourists, fall colors if late in the month, end of the season deals on lodging or camping (?), and a great way to wind down your riding season. Just my thoughts...
    #45
  6. barnyard

    barnyard Verbal tactician Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2007
    Oddometer:
    16,684
    Location:
    central Mn
    Chances of severe weather are way higher in May, than September.

    Family things are the other. Way more graduation parties and what not in early summer than in September.
    #46
  7. Themastermike

    Themastermike Think you caught me in a coma Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    Oddometer:
    4,454
    Location:
    So Ill
    Planning on Black hills and modified DAKAL loop mid June. Can't wait.

    Old thread but maybe others can jump back in on actually doing it?
    #47
  8. Black Hills

    Black Hills Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2,013
    Location:
    Western South Dakota
    I'll have to look at the DAKAL loop and let you know. I'm sure I've ridden most of it. www.dakotadualsportriders.com is a good group check them out. what will you be riding? tons of fun stuff for whatever you ride.
    #48
    Themastermike likes this.
  9. Themastermike

    Themastermike Think you caught me in a coma Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    Oddometer:
    4,454
    Location:
    So Ill
    Thanks I found that page and see that there is an event while we will be out there.

    We will be on light bikes and camping off them. 27954.jpg 28206.jpg
    #49
  10. Black Hills

    Black Hills Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2,013
    Location:
    Western South Dakota
    nice! the DDSR is a great group and their rally is always fun. anythign from single track to gravel/asphalt and everything in between. Do you have the black hills MVUM maps?
    #50
  11. Themastermike

    Themastermike Think you caught me in a coma Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    Oddometer:
    4,454
    Location:
    So Ill
    We have used a variety of maps and a couple different tracks to put our route together. Avenza app does a nice overlay.

    We will not be attending the event. We have 6 or 7 days of steady riding lined up but will probably run into some of the event guys.
    #51
    Tslapper and Black Hills like this.