Planning for Forever West 2012

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Blaise W, Mar 8, 2012.

  1. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    OK, plans have been made! We will be three, with one flying to Salt Lake City on 2 Sept, where we will pick him up and head back to our room in the garden spot of Wendover, NV. We are staging out of the Rainbow Casino and the security folks are OK with us leaving our rig there for almost two weeks. We hit the trail early on 3 Sept and head for the Golden Spike Monument. Our third, Kamy, will leave the trail in Rawlins, WY and ride to Denver where he will fly home. We will go thru there and pick his bike up on the way back to Houston. Who said we weren't easy to get along with??

    Pantah, we just might run into you, depending on how fast you ride. If very fast, we will wave as you go by! How many in your group?

    I decided to add another variety of tire to the collection of new rubber in my garage; Continental TKC 80's, and bought one for the WR and the TE630. I know this isn't as good as the 606 in the loose stuff, but it will probably last the entire trip. The K60 is hanging around if I change my mind on the Husky. I've ridden just a bit on the TKC and as long as it isn't worn down too much it gives fairly good traction. Kamy will be on TKC's as well, on his R1200GS.

    We will have an extra gallon of gas on the WR, and maybe small bottle or two on the other bikes, just in case. I would really like to spring for a single FMF exhaust on the Husky so that I can mount my brand new custom Wolfman right side bracket. I had it made so that it is closer to the frame, allowing a 1 or 2 gallon Rotopax can to be mounted under the saddle bag. More money though, and I don't think I can justify it yet.......but if not now, when....

    Around three weeks to go now!
    #61
  2. Sourjon

    Sourjon TAT'erd

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    Sounds good Ken. Looks like we will be ahead of you now when you hit the eastern part of the trail. I just ordered new 606's last night after considering the TKC. If I knew for certain it would be dry I'd go with the Shinko 244. I've had very good luck with them on the KLR and they are so cheap it's ridiculous.

    John
    #62
  3. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    Let's hope that it IS dry! The averages are on our side, and my fingers are crossed that the monsoons are over by the time we head out. We'll look for your tracks. If you are on the East while we are on the West and North, just call to find out what awaits. Don has my number.

    K
    #63
  4. bEnt_bars

    bEnt_bars Been here awhile

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    There's a group of us heading out from Arco on Aug 27th and are doing most of this route but with a few revisions

    GPS is loaded up but I'm hoping to get some good quality back up paper maps of the area on my way down there

    Any recommendations?
    #64
  5. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

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    Benchmark Maps are what you want for paper maps. Unequalled.

    Have good trips fellas !
    #65
  6. Sourjon

    Sourjon TAT'erd

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    Benchmark for certain. Buy them online before you head out. Well worth the price.

    John
    #66
  7. Pantah

    Pantah Jiggy Dog Fan from Scottsdale Supporter

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    Just two of us. My buddy from CA aboard a KLR. I'll ride my Yam wr250r from Phoenix and meet at Echo Park. Then we'll head west along the tracks together.

    Hope we bump into you somehow. -P


    #67
  8. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    The Benchmark maps are the Bomb! I have been working on tracing the route onto the maps with a highlighter just to get a better idea of where we will be going. Very interesting. I would like to copy those pages from the books , cut into manageable strips, and carry along during the ride, but don't know if I'll be able to do it. It would take a lot of time. The books are just too big to take along.

    It sounds like the trail will be well-worn by the time we get there! Now, if the fires will just not interfere too much.
    #68
  9. Sourjon

    Sourjon TAT'erd

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    Funny you mention that Ken. I cut up map books all the time to put in the tank bag window. The Benchmarks are so nice and kinda pricey I hate to do it. I've been highlighting the route myself. Somehow I got to be the route person for this trip so I don't want to disappoint the group and get us lost or run out of fuel :)

    John
    #69
  10. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    John, if I get a totally free day, I may run down to Kinkos and make color copies to cut up. The Benchmark books are more Atlas than Map, and I'm sure not going to chop them up. They will get used a lot in the future. Next year is Mex to Can, and I'll trace that route as well. I may just copy the pages onto legal paper, number them, fold, and put into a plastic case. The smart thing would be to do it two sided, but I can just imagine how much time that would take. Still, that might be the ticket. I wonder how the highlighted routes will copy? 'Still need to read the road numbers thru the orange.

    Do you plan to take the "extra" routes? I really want to do Parting of the Ways, but I think it adds too many miles and we probably won't be able to see that spot. I'll have to do a bit more research there. Kamy will take 2 extra gallons on his GS. Tristan will carry 1 extra gallon on the WR, but I'm stuck with 6.7 on the Husky. That should be plenty. Now, to figure out how to carry enough extra water. I think I'll just get everyone to carry an extra quart or so in a plastic bottle, for cooking, drinking, etc. I carried a collapsable plastic bag on the TAT but never really used it. My 100 oz Camelbak seemed to do the trick then, but it might be a bit small for this trip as we will camp a lot more. I'm also considering a water purifying pump as backup. Space does get tight though......

    We will be loading up the weekend before the trip, and I am going to test out towing the trailer with three bikes behind my new Escape. It's rated at 2000#, and the trailer with bikes weighs #1850 by my calculation. I think that's going to be pushing it a bit too much, actually. More than likely we will tow with my trusty Dodge diesel. The difference in overall fuel cost will be less than $200, as the Dodge will get around 20mpg with the trailer. It gets 15 mpg towing a 28' travel trailer. The Escape will probably get not much more than 20 with that kind of load. Plus the Ford is new and it might not be a good idea to work it that hard with low miles on the motor. I really got it to tow just one bike when I head out for this ride or that. 'Just thinking out loud......

    The other think I'm working on is reducing my load. Since my son and I will always be together, we should get by with just one JetBoil, one set of tools, and what ever else I can combine, split up, etc. We will both have to carry tents and sleeping bags. I'm leaving my little Gerber camp hatchet and taking a folding saw, which was more useful on the TAT when cutting trail. I doubt we'll have to do much of that this time. That nasty creek crossing on the TAT put every cutting tool to use though. I could hardly believe that on a recent trip report someone posted a pic of that creek being totally dry! There was 3' of water in it some places when we were there. In fact, we had LOTS of water after leaving in mid June. Lots of snow melt at that time of year, but a bit cooler, so pick your poison.

    Last year I used a bath towel that I picked up along the way to wrap some of my riding gear into a roll and lashed it to the back of the duffel for quick access. I will make that a piece of waterproof canvas this year. It lets me have my thermal liner, or jacket, if I wear my armor, readily available for on/off at will without getting into the saddle bags or duffel. My current thoughts are to just go with the armored up jacket and pants though. I don't think it will be overly hot except for a few spots in NV, UT, and maybe ID. The Klim Traverse really opens up and vents pretty well. My son is using Revit Cayenne Pro gear, and it may be a lot warmer.

    K

    K
    #70
  11. Sourjon

    Sourjon TAT'erd

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    John
    #71
  12. Pantah

    Pantah Jiggy Dog Fan from Scottsdale Supporter

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    Parting of the Ways - is a short ride off hwy 28. When you come off Lander Cutoff Rd turn southwest onto Hwy 28. A few miles down, your first dirt road on the right is McCann Ranch Road. Turn right onto that road and you'll bump into the Oregon Trail/Mormon road in about 2.5 miles or so. It's marked with a stone post. Turn west onto that road (double track) and in about 4 or 5 miles you'll find the Sublett Cutoff (Parting of the Ways). It is well marked like all these sites are.

    The road has some soft spots but if dry is easy. We continued on the left fork into Farson maybe another 40-50 minute ride. There is gas at Farson at the big intersection of 28 and 191.

    If you ride back up 28 heading northeast after refueling in Farson, maybe a few miles past McCann Ranch road you will find a tourist rest stop lot on the right (southeast) with historical markers pointing out the real South Pass on the horizon. From that lot if you look south and east you'll see a dirt road in the middle ground running generally to the real South Pass. That is the Oregon Trail too. Just ride downslope on the little gravel path past the historical markers and you'll access it in maybe a quarter mile. Head southeast on the Oregon Trail and you'll bump into several more markers, graves and such.

    You'll eventually come to a gate at a private ranch and will have to turn around and go back out the way you came. But the whole thing is a short ride. It was a higlight for me.

    You probably won't have tracks for this section and it's easy to get lost because there are a whole bunch of trails criss crossing. We just stayed on the most well-traveled two-track and found every site we were looking for, such as Twin Mounds. I had a benchmark map book with me, but we didn't need it.

    From there we were able to make Rawlins with plenty of gas left. The distance for us from Farson's fuel to Rawlins' fuel was maybe 200 miles tops with the backtracking around South Pass included.

    My GPS was loaded with Citynavigator NA maps, and I used Garmin's Basecamp to manage it. I had tracks for everything except the Oregon/Mormon Trail, but I studied my Benchmark and Citynav maps so much that when I got there it was like I rode it before.

    Hope it's dry for you.
    #72
  13. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    Sourjon (John), I wish we were closer so that we could compare notes. I'm just now really looking at the route closely.

    What I really, really, need is a Garmin guru in Houston to help me manage the tracks provided by Tony. The I and II routes are huge, and my 276c needs 300 turns max (I assume that is 300 points, but not sure), so I can't deal with them as is. I have to cut them down to size and would like to get each day into one track file. Maybe I'm dreaming, but that's the goal. Looks like I need to divide the track files and then take out many points.

    As for the routes, in some places I can't tell if I need to follow the "main" road to take one of the closely paralleling side roads. I guess looking at the tracks would clear that up, and maybe a few added points on the route. I don't dare let the gps "recalculate". Are you going thru the same drill? Anybody reading who has time for a phone call type turorial and is familiar with the 276c, let me know! Meanwhile I am trying to tutor myself, something that is quite challenging!
    #73
  14. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

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    call me tomorrow. pm me

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    #74
  15. Sourjon

    Sourjon TAT'erd

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    Ken I broke the part we are doing into individual days as you describe. If you can identify these points I can help you out. Also with BaseCamp you can filter the tracks down to as many points as needed. I have filtered ours to a max of 500 for each day. Sending you a PM with my cell number. I am out the door tonight but tomorrow afternoon looks to be free.

    John
    #75
  16. bEnt_bars

    bEnt_bars Been here awhile

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    I checked out the benchmark website and am thinking of buying the folded maps instead of the atlas'

    Is there enough detail with these for what's needed?


    #76
  17. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

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    Benchmarks yes definitly. gazetteer atlas no.

    Sent from my SCH-I800 using Tapatalk 2
    #77
  18. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    Enjoyable day here figuring out how to work with the trip tracks. Divide, Join, Filter, rename, etc., all fairly logical and I'm almost done. It's not rocket science after all.....as long as we aren't Forever Lost in The West!
    #78
  19. Blaise W

    Blaise W Long timer Supporter

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    Success! Tracks divided by days and trimmed to manageable points. Had to use the full capacity for numbers of tracks. Loaded into my 276C and ready to go. Now to do the same with the 60CSx for the other bike. Making a detailed list of stuff to take, and staging it in the living room. Today I'll get my spare Rotopax and mounting hardware to Kamy so he can decide how to put it on his GS. Tires should be in today or tomorrow, and tire changing comes right soon; three to do. I may order a few critical spare parts for the Husky, especially the temp. sensor, as that has been an issue on some 630's. Today I will put a switch in the bike power for my GPS as it does not look like you can turn off the power to the unit with the on/off button. Charging stays on all the time, which seems wierd. It would run down the bike battery. With the frail power cord connector, unplugging everyday is not an option. Time to check the trailer wheel bearings by a quick spin, lights, etc., and not much more to do.

    I wanna ride!
    #79
  20. Janet from Joisey

    Janet from Joisey Bad Kitty

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    Original 630 temp sensor part was replaced by 8000H3649.

    Don't forget to check/loctite bolts, especially one under the instrument indicator and the lower one in the airbox cover. I use a drop of atv on heads of the panel bolts, instead of loctite on the threads, with the brass insert-spinning issue.

    If you have some tire paste, pack a little in a film canister-sized container; it came in handy when we were getting tire bead back on along the trail.
    #80