Death Valley 3 Day Tour KTM 990's

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by chrish4ku, Apr 30, 2018.

  1. chrish4ku

    chrish4ku Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    991
    Location:
    San Leandro, CA
    Just a quick write up of our trip to DV in late March. in 2018, the gravel and dirt roads were in very good shape with little deep sand or issues.

    First we decided to get orange shirts though...
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    How do you get 4 990's and 4 guys to your destination? Get your buddy to buy a Sprinter with a tow hitch....
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    Keepin it clean
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    Destination - Lone Pine for Day 1
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    Ok then, there, mr Canadian - Let's ride
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    Target - Alabama Hills for our Day 1 afternoon
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    Moike...
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    Tone
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    Ron lost his 3rd fuel tank - took a little drag - bolt issue, fixed.
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    Alabama hills area is great - lots of western film history, lots of great views, lots of dirt to ride.
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    Mt Whitney Portal RD
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    Sort of iffy road closed signs - not many people minding them, including cars
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    Back down, to the Hills
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    Some nice tracks around this area, with great views
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    The whole gang
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    I'm tour guide for the weekend, and head photographer....
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    All in all day 1 was pretty awesome and could spend a lot more time here
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    Don't forget some twistie pavement in the Alabama Hills
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    Rok Straps mas finas para cerveza (lady in background was amused)
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    mmmmmm good
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    Lone Pine is a cool place for Western Movie history
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    Day 2 - Make a pancake, ride through Death Valley to Beatty NV
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    Gathering the gang, or at least trying to hoard cats
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    First segment, hwy 190 to Furnace Creek
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    Not even noon yet
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    Now - for West Side Road - in exceptional condition this year IF you have good suspension that keeps the washboard at bay...
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    Da other Canadian - Ron and his mighty back up KTM
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    Oh Sure...we should be all fine but watch out for the snakes, cause I don't like snakes
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    Tony, like, let's go man, I'm headed for retirement baby
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    West side is a perfect 50mph big bike road with the right tire pressure.
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    Hey washboard for miles makes crap fall off light LED lights and stuff...
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    A shot down the intersection of Westside and the Pavement
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    It's about 90 ish..
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    Little lunch at the intersection of Greenwater Valley / Furnace Creek Wash south end
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    Greenwater Valley is some fast dirt too...perfect scenery and weather. The 70s vs. 90s on this day.
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    I can tell you that the Suomy MX Tourer is the best DS helmet I have ever had - especially if you hate wind buffeting, and you like 2.9lbs.
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    Dante's is closed, so that's a bit of a bummer
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    #1
    max dexter, Marcus I., NSFW and 3 others like this.
  2. chrish4ku

    chrish4ku Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    991
    Location:
    San Leandro, CA
    Just Retired...hmmm now what do I do? Horse trade motorcycles and plan rides.
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    Some cool side trips out here on the way to Beatty NV
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    All in all these routes were packed down this year making them easy for a 530 lb beast.
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    Givin' it Gas
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    Everyone's having fun - especially those who are leaving work behind for good
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    The highest point in the valley is this rock
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    By the sign that everyone takes a photo of because their friends make them take a photo in front of it.
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    Checked into Motel 6 - Beatty. Day 2 Riding done. Time for beer and food. Motel 6 is a good choice, but get a room far away from the ELEVATOR unless you like squeaky noises all night long...
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    I just won a quarter!!!
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    Goin' to the VFW for dinner, drinks, good company, and a hell of a fun place. I say GO THERE. You can sign in as a "guest" of the bartender if you're not a vet.
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    Best place in Beatty, best atmosphere, best attitude, decent food, great drinks. This place is full of storytellers so be prepared.
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    Next to the blank billboard...
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    Guns and Bombs...booom
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    Ok, then some like, shots.....for pain.
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    Basically every local thought we were some sort of baseball team with the orange shirts. "who you playin' this weekend" - Um, we're playin the FF's.
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    Everyone has an ass kicken good time on a 3 day tour but I don't recommend eating this stuff before a long ride...
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    Mas Casino...with Mr. Z - Watch out he was in the Canadian Militia and was a sharpshooter.
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    I won ma... I won!
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    Ok then Day 3 - Titus, Ubehebe, Eureka, Big Pine, Lone Pine
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    Ryholite Ghost town is a must see
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    We are....not working.
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    Some new art, since I've been 5 years ago
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    Get used to it Tony....
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    On Easter Sunday, we gave grace and thanks
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    Oh those loopy Canadians.....touchin' everything....
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    On to Titus Canyon
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    If you guys want a cheap, durable, waterproof bag that can take a beating, and fits well on the back of a bike, look at the Leader Accessories Deluxe Water Resistant PVC Tarpaulin Duffel Bag Backpack 40L on Amazon for $40.
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    Hit Leadfield first. This year the back side of Titus seemed more loose than normal
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    I mean you're riding in a creek bed for the most part, but it's awesome. There are a few small rock steps that sneak up on you too...
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    Titus Canyon - some have said you can drive a car through it, but from what I saw in 2018 I wouldn't unless you have high clearance and 4X4. The canyon part isn't bad - it's the getting there part that is pretty chunky. Of course it changes every year....
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    Ron
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    MoIke
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    SUBWAY - Eat Fresh...!! or Slightly warmed by the desert heat
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    Mmmm, stale mayo n beef cuts, with soggy tomatos
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    Out of Titus Canyon which is a must see, and on to Ubehebe Crater. I wish you could ride around this. No time to walk it...
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    Ooops, no drones. Kind of stupid law out here where it doesn't endanger anyone but a lizard.
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    On down to Death Valley Road - this was the most dust we saw the whole trip.
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    Northbound
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    To the Famous Crankshaft Crossing
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    Tonys first big dirt trip on a 990
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    Sulfer Mine - now we smell like rotten eggs..
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    By the way this is Ron's backup 990 - his Baja edition stalled and quit on the way over to loading it up for the trip in San Jose.....It's good to have a backup bike.
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    Mike covered in Sulfur dust
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    The "long and dusty road" Eureka part of Death Valley Road
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    The pavement from Eureka to Big Pine is some of the best I can think of in California,
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    Sierras off to the west
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    This sign is worn out more every year...
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    Look for the bong next time too if you need to hit it before heading home.
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    Close to Big Pine
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    Gas it up
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    Italian wine?
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    While we're here let's check out some satellites..
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    Pretty impressive place in the middle of nowhere
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    On to Manzanar, and area around that. I've never been back here but there is a lot of dirt riding, and an OHV park even.
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    We had to wait for the train, then proceeded.
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    Nice views here too on the way back to Lone Pine
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    All in all it was a great to ride the 990s so much. We did about 200-250 miles per day on full days.

    As long as you have gas, you can go as long as you want.


    Lone Pine Saloon..
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    Owner doesn't want no more dollar bills pinned up please....;)
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    All loaded up and ready for home - Da Sprinter.
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    Ready to play softball again
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    Until Next Time....
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    Keep that Sprinter Clean..
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    #2
  3. BDO

    BDO Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2015
    Oddometer:
    250
    Location:
    Transported Tube
    Oh yeah, great time guys! Thanks for the intro to big bikes in DV - Had an AWESOME time!
    #3
  4. zeegman

    zeegman Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2007
    Oddometer:
    566
    Location:
    San Jose, Ca
    Good times Chris,

    Thanks for planning, herding the cats, and writing up this report.

    Thanks to Tony for haulin us in "Das Boot".

    Mike Z
    #4
    BDO likes this.
  5. Rrddc

    Rrddc Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2017
    Oddometer:
    13
    Location:
    94061
    Great summary of the entire trip. You forgot to tell them to make sure the spare bike has knobby tires instead of street tires. Was a great ride with a lot packed into it. Great planning and lots to see. That was a great ride for my first big ride on the backup bike.

    Thanks Chris for planning and taking pictures.

    R
    #5
  6. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2016
    Oddometer:
    948
    Location:
    Sherwood, Oregon
    Great pics and report fellas, DV is such a cool area :thumb Have only been down there once, but I look forward to when I can get back and explore more of the park.

    You guys covered a fair amount of distance each day; was the majority of time spent riding dirt/2-track, or did you have a decent amount of asphalt time mixed in there too?

    Sweet setup with the Sprinter and loaded bikes, what a great way to travel.

    Thanks for taking the time to put the report together and document everything with pictures...makes me want to move this up in the priority list :ricky
    #6
  7. breeno

    breeno Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2014
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    Looks like a good time! You had me at DV... :clap
    #7
  8. BDO

    BDO Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2015
    Oddometer:
    250
    Location:
    Transported Tube
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    Day 1


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    Day 2 Maps



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #8
    thirsty 1, JosephMDunbar and NSFW like this.
  9. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2007
    Oddometer:
    21,491
    Location:
    Burbank CA
    awesome ride....good to see the 990s stretching their legs.
    #9
  10. Bike Guy

    Bike Guy Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 20, 2005
    Oddometer:
    773
    Location:
    sierra foothills, hwy 49
    I saw some great pics so it REALLY DID HAPPEN
    #10
  11. equyst

    equyst Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2018
    Oddometer:
    68
    Location:
    dallas
    Looks like a good time![​IMG]
    #11
  12. JosephMDunbar

    JosephMDunbar Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2018
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    I’m just getting into off-road but have been riding street for a long time as well as dirt bikes as a youngster in the upper Midwest.

    This is an awesome post. I live in Las Vegas and have been to DV a few times but am really looking forward to getting onto the dirt and deeper into the environment. Thanks for the inspiration!
    #12
  13. Kingfish

    Kingfish Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    106
    Great RR! Not sure how I missed this one when you first out it up. Reading through it reminded me of my trip out there 2 years ago, although I was in my Jeep due to my bike having a mechanical on the road there. Unfortunately I didn't have a backup bike but the Jeep was heaps of fun. DV is truly a uniquely beautiful place. I hear a lot of roads have been washed out since last month due to thunderstorms, I haven't checked to see yet how repairs are coming along but hopefully it gets sorted soon. I'll be going back out there in 2020 to take my daughter when she is 3.
    #13
  14. Hanzo

    Hanzo KLUANE

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Oddometer:
    554
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Great, inspiring post. Someday, I hope. ThanxAgain!
    #14
  15. DesertSurfer

    DesertSurfer Tail sprayin

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,599
    Location:
    City of the Angels
    990's and Death Valley are a great combination. Thanks for the reminder!
    #15
  16. canadasax

    canadasax Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2004
    Oddometer:
    424
    Location:
    Okanagan Valley BC
    Nice ride report
    Good to see the 990's being used the way they were intended to be used.
    What did you use for bike to bike communication and how did it work?
    #16
  17. Davethestick

    Davethestick Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Oddometer:
    767
    Location:
    Agoura Hills CA
    Great RR, thanks for sharing!
    #17
  18. chrish4ku

    chrish4ku Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    991
    Location:
    San Leandro, CA
    Bike Comms were Sena 20s - tied into Motorola bluetooth GMRS. Sena's work great.
    #18