Riding through the Americas

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Wotnext, Apr 15, 2014.

  1. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Two years ago a vague plan for an adventure of significance began to form. Slowly at first but with increasing momentum as I trolled through hours and hours of ADVRider and other motorcycle threads. GOT TO DO THIS before its too late, too old or just run out of steam. CARPE DIEM (the only latin that ever made any sense to me).

    So to those who went before, motivated and informed me and for those who will follow, are still thinking about it, or for many who will spend their time following by computer......ENJOY my ride through the Americas (Top to Bottom) on my tried and trusty Kawasaki KLR 650 for as long as it takes (or the money holds out), but I guesstimate about 18 to 24 months.

    Doing it as cheaply as I can, cause essentially are'nt all KLR riders cheap. LOL. I'm trying for real time reporting but won't always have the connection so please bare with me and send out the rescue party if you havent heard in a month.
    #1
  2. Mcgee

    Mcgee Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    745
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    Ok, sounds great! Most of all have fun and ride safe. Looking forward to your ride.
    #2
  3. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Hope you find the trip interesting
    #3
  4. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    So here I am saying goodbye to my family and girlfriend and as I pass through the airport check in my head keeps playing that oldies song...."Well I'm leaving on a jet plane, don't know when I'll be back again...." , yes I do know that it dates me.

    Suddenly I am been told by a bored looking customs official to take off my shoes and I find myself smiling, as if I would smuggle something in my shoes. They gave me a wave and I was headed for the USA via Dakar...kinda appropriate don't you think?

    16 hrs later I land at Dulles airport, Washington DC. Gritty eye and tousled headed I mumble the answers to a young customs guy, the first of at least three checks. I pick up my bag and walk out to meet Inhousebob. There is snow on the ground and its about 4 degrees celcius.

    Bobs welcome is warm. The "Nigerian Prince" has arrived.
    #4
  5. inhousebob

    inhousebob mostly vertical

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    Oddometer:
    632
    Location:
    Northern VA
    We are all looking forward to following along. Travel safe and have awesome adventures, my friend!
    #5
  6. Tsotsie

    Tsotsie Semi-reformed Tsotsi Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,630
    Location:
    South Texas
    Welkom heet!

    No, it is not that KLR riders are cheap, it is just that we are economical and make proper use of the resources available, without being pretentious!

    Safe travels and enjoy the hospitality of the USA!
    #6
  7. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Hi Bob
    Yes it took a little time, but we're up and running. Now its about learning to type faster. LOL. Your and the families support meant a great start to the trip. MANY THANKS. I hope in can reciprocate some day.
    #7
  8. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Ag baie dankie man.

    You must be Houston friend of Xdragracer. Welcome aboard.
    #8
  9. WhicheverAnyWayCan

    WhicheverAnyWayCan Deaf Biker

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,755
    Location:
    Seven Springs NC
    Good Luck and ride safe!
    #9
  10. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    It was more economical to buy a KLR in the USA than to ship mine over. For some months I had been searching the internet for a likely "stead" but invariably lost the good ones to local buyers. One such buyer was Inhousebob who beat me to a reasonably well farkled bike in Virginia. Cutting a long story short I bought his "old" 2011 KLR with all the essential mods already done (torsion doohickey, drill through subframe upgrade, thermabob) plus a few more smaller items like EM sprocket nut and magnetic drain plug. The bike had no name and 5300 miles on the clock.

    The KLR riders in Virginia have a great group if they can be judged by the people I met. Really nice helpful guys each one of them. Alpheus undertook to bring the bike up to standard for a long trip. CHECK OUT his work on the KLR 650.net forum under "Prepping for a long ride" .... please someone insert a link as I am still too inefficient with this tablet to get it done myself. THANKS
    #10
  11. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Thanks for your kind wishes. Hope you follow along with me.
    #11
  12. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Thanks and hope you enjoy the ride with me
    #12
  13. XDragRacer

    XDragRacer Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    4,979
    Here's the link to the "build" of Peter's KLR650:

    http://www.klr650.net/forums/showthread.php?t=118481

    Bon Voyage and Godspeed, Peter! :clap
    #13
  14. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Welcome. Not sure why I am screwing up this reply, but welcome anyway:lol3
    #14
  15. A1pheus

    A1pheus Electronics Guru

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2013
    Oddometer:
    2
    Location:
    Warrenton,VA
    All you guys get to have your usernames? I am a member of so many forums I can't count and I am always able to use my name. O well 1st time for everything.

    Oh yea Pete good luck on your trip. Keep ur eye on the fuel level...
    #15
  16. just jeff

    just jeff Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2012
    Oddometer:
    4,014
    Location:
    LacLaBiche Alberta Canada
    Hi Wotnext!
    I followed Damoclese's link over from KLR 650 Forum and look forward to traveling along with you vicariously on your travels!:clap I am justjeff over there as well.
    Best Regards....justjeff
    #16
  17. WhicheverAnyWayCan

    WhicheverAnyWayCan Deaf Biker

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,755
    Location:
    Seven Springs NC
    Alpheus, welcome to the forum!! Now I think I know why you were asking if I had mounting bracket for the GPS.. (wkheathjr at the KLR650)
    #17
  18. XDragRacer

    XDragRacer Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    4,979
    So far, Peter's (Wotnext's) thread has been devoid of images. This limitation results from, 1) Access to a suitable camera (some Customs procedure delays), 2) Cumbersome tablet operation for Internet access, and 3) Difficulty in establishing an image-hosting account with a foreign (non-US) credit card.

    Wotnext authorized me to glean some images from other sources (e.g., other Internet forums, etc.) and to post them here, prior to establishing his own techniques and sources for posting pictures on ADV.

    First, a KLR-rich caravan of northern Virginia riders met at Inhousebob"s (Wotnext's host's) place for a festive barbecue and symbolic ride through Washington, DC suburbs celebrating the almost completion of Peter's bike build (Peter rode a "stunt double" for the occasion):

    [​IMG]

    The artistry and industry of Inhousebob produced this T-shirt, commemorating the event:

    [​IMG]

    Soon after this noisy fun, Peter's actual mount was ready; fully ruggedized and modified by Alpheus for the two-year odyssey (the 10-gallon fuel tank might just come in handy):

    [​IMG]

    Upon launch, Inhousebob, FAW3, and Damocles rode along with Wotnext on his "maiden voyage," for the first day; KLRs fully packed:

    [​IMG]

    Riders ready (Wotnext at left):

    [​IMG]

    Down the Skyline Drive in its glorious springtime splendor:

    [​IMG]

    Overnight at Natural Chimneys Park, Mt. Solon, VA; next to a jousting track, or so they claim:

    [​IMG]

    Looks like Peter likes his new ride so much, he actually sleeps with it at night, in his tent:

    [​IMG]

    Then, on the morning of day 2, in minor observance of Murphy's Law, Wotnext's speedometer cable nut is reattached, torqued, and cinched down with Gorilla tape by the assembled technical talent:

    [​IMG]

    All systems, "GO," Wotnext headed south, his "escort," north.

    Looking forward to more of Peter's words, and his own pictures!
    #18
  19. AdamFL

    AdamFL Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    245
    Location:
    N Florida
    If you get N FL way (st. Augustine) look me up. My wife is Afrikaans. Good riding!
    #19
  20. Wotnext

    Wotnext KLR 650

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    Home - Johannesburg South Africa
    Welcome to the ride and thanks for all the assistance in getting the bike sorted. I have your number on speed dial.:rofl
    #20