Madrid(NYC)-Mongolia solo on a KTM 790 Adventure

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Martincito, Apr 18, 2019.

  1. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    I rode with my fiends form Bukhara to Osh. Tomorrow we will part ways. they are heading to Singapur and I'm going to Mongolia.
    I rode a little bit the R model, suspension feels way better but is too high for me. I would've drop that bike a many times instead of almost zero times. I wish I can have a better suspension on the S without the high of the R. The S model was up to the task on every situation and we rode at the same pace over very rough roads.
    I'm going to write tonight or tomorrow a full review fo my luggage and a comparison with the hard ones but I'm telling you in advance that he width difference is less than 4cm.
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  2. Pcq

    Pcq Been here awhile

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    I think you can have an R with the S saddle swapped in, which maybe can be lowered, but still will be higher than a the non R model just with the additional travel.
    From my experience you get used to taller bikes and become a better rider by developing the skill and reading terrain and situations to avoid dropping the bike. That doesn’t mean I don’t envy (envidia sana) Lyndon poskitt hahaha
    Subaruvich likes this.
  3. Baggi'tard

    Baggi'tard If I don't answer I'm ridin' or shootin' Supporter

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    I've made 100s of hours of moto video. Any place on the bike is going to make the camera vibrate and shake, I don't do that at all anymore. Put it on your helmet. Your head is the smoothest place possible. I have mine mounted on the left side of my helmets, it captures a tiny bit of my helmet/visor and it gives a good reference and it looks like you are looking over my shoulder. I don't want it hanging off the front of my chinbar, but a lot of guys use that. Using a body mount will capture a lot of dash and windshield which just gets in the way of the view.
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  4. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    We experimented swapping the seats just to see if there was any difference and there wasn't any. The R seats seems taller but is also softer. I rarely drop the bike riding is mostly moving the bike around at slow speeds particularly if I can't reach the floor and the ground surface is loose.

    Honestly in this type of wold tour rides you don't need the extra clearance at all but it would be great to have a the high end suspension without the penalty of the extra height for a person with my inseam.

    Perhaps for dual sport ride(weekend on national parks with friend looking to get in trouble) the extra clearance is great but for adventure riding (combination of all type of roads in multiple days journeys with wise risk management) I don't think is necessary at least you are really looking for very difficult stuff.
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  5. timeOday

    timeOday Long timer

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    This thread of yours is the BEST reporting anywhere on the 790 if you ask me.
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  6. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    I'm now in Osh, Kyrgyzstan after finishing the Pamir Highway. One week of dirt roads of al kinds, gravel, sand, mud, washboard, rock gardens, broken pavement full of deep potholes and high altitude.
    The bikes got a lot of punishment inflicted and sometimes I didn't have the legs strength to keep standing up for so many hours.
    In my last post I was in Kalaikhum, Tajikistan from there we rode to Khorog, Tajikistan. The road goes on the border with Afghanistan with just a river separating both countries. You can see the villages on the other side and few people.

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    The Italian rider , Carlo, we met two days before blew the rear suspension on his Royal Enfield and we rode together to Khorog and we parted ways, he took an easier road to Murgab while we went through the Wakhan corridor.

    Downtown Khorog.
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    In this picture you can see three countries, Tajikistan in the foreground, Afghanistan across the river and Pakistan the peaks on the background.
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    Tajikistan-Afghanistan border.
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    We goto to Langar a tiny town with a nice guesthouse

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  7. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    The gas station went from bad to worse. I couldn't stop laughing looking at them.

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    I swear there was a filter on the funnel made of wire so big that the only thing that it could filter was a key falling into it or a stone.
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  8. 08StangGT_CS

    08StangGT_CS Adventurer

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    Awesome ride report. Thanks for sharing.
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  9. AirCommando

    AirCommando Adventurer

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    Enjoying your RR!
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  10. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    The road from Langar to Murgan goes through the Wakham corridor.

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    We stopped for a bowl of soup with vegetables and a different goat probably a relative of the traveler one.

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    I carried with me a AMA sticker and found this place, a military checkpoint next to Afghanistan border to place it. No many Americans on this side of the border.

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    And finally we got to Murgab totally exhausted. It was hard the combination of rough dirt roads and high elevation.

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  11. Cani41

    Cani41 Adventurer

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    A real adventure. Congratulations. And the bike seems OK! What a kind of test!
    We just want more : pictures, stories, goats!
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  12. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    From Murgab we rode to Osh, Kyrgyzstan, 400km over three mountain passes above 4000 meters and a border crossing.
    There was ice on the side of the road

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    This is the lake Karakul

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    These are some Gopro grabs showing the altitude.

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    Attached Files:

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  13. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    We arrived to the border crossing o the Tajikistan side. First building was customs and the second immigrations.
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    After 12,000 km finally I dropped the bike. Between the first and second building there was some ruts made of dry mud and I got into one that lead me to a soft patch got stuck lost balance and drop it in a silly way. Actually I think she just wanted to nap after all the effort. I let her rest and took a pic. She deserved some rest.

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    After the border the road got a bit muddy but not much.

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    When we crossed to Kyrgyzstan there was some rain, hail, snow and of course goats.

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    Tomorrow I'll write a full review of the Mosko luggage, comparing the volume and width to the KTM/Touratech cases.
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  14. Subaruvich

    Subaruvich Been here awhile

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    How is your Aether riding gear holding up so far?
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  15. Baggi'tard

    Baggi'tard If I don't answer I'm ridin' or shootin' Supporter

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    You guys must have crossed paths with Noraly on her Himalayan? maybe just back in Kazakstan? She's going the opposite direction, it's like watching her report in reverse.
  16. Tim Cullis

    Tim Cullis Partially heighted

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    Interesting. The KTM/Touratech 45/31 hard panniers which your companions are using are 106 cm wide. My Bumot 35/31 hard panniers are 92 cm. The Bumot 40/36 setup is 98 cm. So you're saying your soft luggage is about 102 cm? Maybe it's because you are using the KTM/Touratech pannier rails?
  17. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    Moto Mosko Lugagge luggage review.

    Backcountry 35 pannier system.
    I have this setup with one extra large molle pouch on each side. The system is very well designed totally waterproof if you close it properly and has a good capacity. The construction is very solid, that is a good thing but make them a bit heavy. I don't have a scale with me but they don't feel way lighter than aluminum cases. Can be lockable using a steel core strap but the bags themselves don't have a hard part to pass it though so is through the racks and then soft parts on the bags. There is a latch where you can put a padlock but is flimsy.
    After 12,000 km they are like new, all the seams and buckles are intact and there is no ripping anywhere. Carlo, the Italian guys on the Royal Enfield is using the same setup and he had a seam that is bursting and a bit of damaged but it may be due to overfill them or to putting to much pressure with the steel lock straps. Fortunately for me but not for the review I never crash them so I don't know how strong they are but in the Pamir highway the bike was always hitting rocks and potholes and the system stayed intact.

    Width. The system using Touratech racks (the only ones available on early April) is 100 cm.


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    A KTM/Touratech is 104 cm

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    I clearly struggle with the width. I ride a1200 GS at home and never hit anything using the rule if the handlebar passes the entire bike too. The first week I touch a couple of cars filtering between traffic, gladly the bags are soft. I think the main issue is bad design on the racks. I measure a BMW 1200 GS Adventure parked next to my bike and the racks are narrower than on the 790. So basically that beast with hard luggage is narrower that a 790 using Mosko Moto or Touratech luggage. I guess there is other brands of racks better designed with a slimmer profile.

    KTM 790 racks

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    BMW GS 12000 Adventure racks

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  18. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    Capacity. Please understand that this is not a scientific method but just and empiric real life exercise. I took a fully loaded pannier, even fuller that the way I ride them and try to fit everything on the hard cases. Yes, they get very dirty.

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    This is everything I fitted in.

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    Packed on the big hard case I'd say I had 15% of space not used plus all the room in the lid.

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    Packed in the small case I couldn't get everything in. The Jetboil, canister and cup didn't fit.

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    Attached Files:

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  19. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    I like the Backcountry System but there is a few things that could be better.
    They need an extra layer of security, some hard part to pass the steel lock strap through or a more solid lockable latch.
    It would be great if the beaver tail on the sides change a bit in design to allow carrying some slim extra gas cans. I carried a ten liters can but just when empty, when full I strapped it to the passenger seat. I know ten liters is too much but it was just a momentarily situation.
    The velcro in the waterproof bags and in the outer bags should be half and half so you have the option to adhere the inner bag to the outer one but also roll I by itself. I can't find the right way to explain this and may take some pictures later.


    Nomad Tank Bag.

    This is my favourite product from this company. Perfect medium size, not obtrusive white riding, easy to organize inside, easy to unbuckle to gas, integrated rain cover, hydration system. I can't think of any other tank bag with so many useful features. After 12,000 km is still in perfect shape.

    My only issue is with the hydration system but may be user error, sometimes get squeezed when the tank bag is full and is hard to accommodate the water bag inside, the hose get pinched and water doesn't come out. There is also a useless velcro on the base that scratches you hands when you put the water bag in.

    It would be good if the hydration compartment had some kind of rubber spacer on its perimeter to keep that section a bit open all the time and prevent the smashing on the hydration bag.

    Fatty Roll Tool
    This is my least favorite. Quite bulky and the way you have to organize the items feel awkward. I prefer my Kriega tool roll even if I can not fit the tire irons on it.
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  20. Martincito

    Martincito Adventurer

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    It's holding up great. No rips, no tears.
    I like Aether apparel. Is very well done, waterproof and nice fit with a clean design. It has very good venting for a waterproof suite. My only issue is that the only time I was riding for a few hours in the rain I my got water in the crotch area. I'm planing to write them an email to see if is a defect on my pants.
    Subaruvich likes this.