Southern Alberta one Weekend at a time

Discussion in 'Canada' started by Lycan1, Jun 9, 2013.

  1. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    A Week in September

    Banff on the menu, with a side of Parkway.

    _MG_0221.jpg
    The big girl carried the load for two people camping. Two tents, two air mattresses, two sleeping bags, well you get the picture. With me on the bike the commercial truck scales weighed my rig in at 390 kg.

    _MG_0223.jpg
    Canada's Castle.

    _MG_0225.jpg
    Always impressive from any angle.

    _MG_0233.jpg
    One of Many stops along the Highway 93 Parkway.
  2. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    A Week in September

    _MG_0236.jpg

    One of Many stops along the Parkway. Very little smoke from BC & Alberta Fires remained in the air.
    _MG_0273.jpg
    Fresh pavement on the road to Marmot Basin.
    _MG_0288.jpg
    The sun came out to warm the two passing through.
    _MG_0292.jpg
    Sitting where once a Glacier did.
  3. Cal

    Cal Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,716
    Location:
    Calgary
    looks like your the pack mule!
    Lycan1 likes this.
  4. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    Pack mule, Sherpa, guide, yep! Happy to do it though. Apparently the pack mule was still hard to keep up with through the twisties.
  5. cal08

    cal08 Long timer

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,092
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    Yeah! Love it.
  6. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    A Week in September Last Day

    My old bike was being cantankerous this morning but after a little preventative maintenance it behaved, mostly... We stopped at Wildrose Motorsport Park to take in some of the races before heading out to Highwood Pass. The weather looked sketchy early in the morning but turned out great!

    _MG_0348.jpg
    Highwood Junction.

    _MG_0353.jpg
    South side of Highwood Pass Summit.

    _MG_0358.jpg
    Highwood Pass Summit.

    _MG_0361.jpg
    Barrier Lake Dam.
    Kona990 likes this.
  7. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    A Week in September extras;

    _MG_0253.jpg
    Athabasca Falls.

    IMG_0342.jpg

    "I'm the Flyer, with only one desire, nobody's going to stop me now!" - SAGA

    _MG_0237-Pano.jpg
    A lesson in signifigance.

    _MG_0364.jpg

    Safe Travels my friend!

    .
  8. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    End of an Era?

    _MG_0187.jpg

    After an indicated mileage of 131,435 kilometers (the reality is closer to 150,000 or more due to an electronic glitch that kept resetting the odometer back 100's at a time for a season ) the 990 needs some serious engine work. The oil pumpes , main bearings and valves need attention. She still runs strong but the cam tensioners occaisionally lose enough oil pressure to keep the cam-chain from slapping and has developed a leak at the base gasket between the cylinders. Rather than potentially destroy the engine and be stranded away from home I am choosing to shut her down until either I can afford to rebuild or replace (the engine or the bike). It has been a hell of a ride and has taken me places of incredible beauty, solitude and joy. Only time will tell what happens from here.

    Ride safe, ride far, and have a great adventure everyone. Maybe I'll see you out there again, but for now, farewell!

    _MG_0060.jpg
    Kona990, cal08 and Cal like this.
  9. Cal

    Cal Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,716
    Location:
    Calgary
    Its been a good run and you have treated that bike well! It was hard for me to sell my 07 f650 but once I did I never looked back, the strom has been a good replacement .
    Keep your ears and eyes open and some thing will pop up.
    Lycan1 likes this.
  10. DualSport855

    DualSport855 Been here awhile Super Supporter Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Oddometer:
    471
    Location:
    Calgarian currently on assignment in Houston TX.
    You got this amigo!


    Cheers
    Lycan1 likes this.
  11. gunnerbuck

    gunnerbuck Island Hopper

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
    Oddometer:
    6,676
    Location:
    N.V.I, B.C.
    I just bought a 3rd -2003 640 Adventure, now I am confused whether to give it some attention and make it into a dependable steed or to just break it up and put it on the shelf for parts.. There is a fourth 640 in prime condition on Ebay in your province I was eyeing up for a while, but enough is enough, 3 will have to do..

    Take your time and get that 990 back to snuff, after all it's gotta be like an old friend by now..
    Lycan1 likes this.
  12. cal08

    cal08 Long timer

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,092
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    I have not followed the developments on the bigger bikes, but I suspect they land more on the marketing side than the performance side. You've taken that bike almost everywhere and in the process developed a massive following. Good luck with the TLC.
    Lycan1 likes this.
  13. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    One Door Closes and Another Opens

    After 8 years and 150,000 kilometers the "Dragon", my 2009 KTM 990 Adventure was having engine problems. Nothing lasts forever and certainly not engines and the 990 had performed admirable for a very respectable amount of kilometers. Despite careful maintenance it was time for a rebuild and the money that would entail was more than I could justify at that moment. I agonised over the cost and the options and the alternatives. Like any manufacturer the parts get more expensive the older a model gets until eventually they are outrageous or simply unavailable. I totaled up the numbers of a worst-case scenario before opening the engine and the numbers just didn't make sense when a new bike could be had for what I initially paid for the 990. Nearly a decade newer machine with enhancements from all the R&D during that time was looking like the more sensible option. I had a hard time justifying the expense to myself as I would once again be making payments, something that I had not had to do for anything, other than a mortgage, in a decade.

    The age old want versus need struggle with my working-class self. I briefly considered being without a motorcycle again, something I swore I would never do. I had been miserable during the years I had been bikeless and even the idea made me very unhappy. I even considered buying a used dirt-bike and being at the mercy of friends to transport it (not having a truck or trailer to do it myself) but decided that was just a poor substitute for what I had. I scoured Kijiji, researched new potential replacements at lenght and crunched numbers. I considered buying a complete used engine, but didn't want to gamble the money on an risky unknown like that. Whatever path I chose would use money that I would have to borrow and a mistake would be costly in a long-term way. I talked to the dealer, and likely drove the saleman Ron crazy with my repeated visits to check minute details and make comparisons with other similar models. I wanted to be realistic about what aftermarket parts I could salvage from the 990 that would be reuseable on the new bike. I had considered other manufacturer's products but in the end; the finish quality and high end components that I was acustomed to from the KTM 990 won me over. If I had to make payments I wanted to be inspired everytime I swung a leg over the new machine, like I had been with the 990.

    I was excited by the new upcoming KTM 790 Adventure R that was finally coming in 2019, BUT it would be in such limited numbers this first season that I would not be able to get one until maybe the November, after the coming riding season was over. Being a new model, the price was higher than what the direct replacement for the 990 was, the 2018 KTM 1090 Adventure R. I knew what the 1090 R was all about; both from extensive research and it's overall similarities to the 990 that I had for so long. The numbers, as well as the machine, eventually won me over and I put my money down one nervous Saturday morning.

    Before that happened though, I had to sell the 990 and had done that a few days prior.

    _MG_0368.jpg

    I had been stripping the 990 Adventure down to deep clean and sort the parts, having dropped the engine and mounting it on a bench stand that a mechanic at work had made for me. He had encouraged me to do the rebuild ignoring the finacial costs since they were not a burden he had to bare. I had taken pictures of the bike in its torn-down stage in preparation for possibly listing them for sale. The cleaned parts were neatly sorted in bins I had bought for the potential of long term storage. On a whim or really to test the saleability of them I posted an ad on the web. Much to my surprise a guy from the Leduc, Alberta area contacted me via email enquiring about the bike. I was totally honest about the miles and the use of the bike and he seemed fairly interested. One day at work he contacted me saying he would like to have a look that evening. I rushed home after work and he was there minutes later with a truck and ramps. He wanted it there and then and I was not prepared, with either a bill of sale or the means to take electronic funds. I rushed to find the paperwork, make a bill of sale and figure out a way to accept his e-transfer. I didn't want him to have traveled 6 hours (round trip) for nothing, or to miss an opportunity to move on to the next machine. We loaded up the bike in pieces , tubs, rolling frame, and engine (on custom stand). Then with funds succesfully transfered we shook hands and he and the 990 "Dragon" disappeared into the night.

    I would be untruthfull if I said that I had no regrets. I had, in reality, not expected it to sell, and certainly not so quickly or as a whole. I though, from previous experience with online selling that there would be the typical tire-kickers and low-ballers and single-part-seekers. I thought that, if there was no interest, I would decide to rebuild the engine and continue on with a new lease on the 990's life. I had truly enjoyed the bike and had seen myself riding it for many more years and miles. It had thrilled me in ways no previous bike had ever come close to with perhaps the exception of my 1986 RZ 350 Yamaha.

    An amazing Era had ended and the new one was about to begin. With the money now to make a down payment on any bike, I decided that the only replacement that would likely make me truly happy would be the newest iteration of the venerable 990 Adventure, that being the KTM 1090 Adventure R. My agonising was over, the deal made, my money down, the papers signed, and the financing arranged. I was commited, or at least my money was for the next 6 years. I would be 5 years into official Senior Citizen status when this new machine was paid off. That wasn't unsettling at all.....yikes!

    Go time.jpg

    All my research had identified what I wanted to add or change before the riding season started; considering that I had bought the bike in November, shortly after selling the 990, I had lots of time. Trying to keep the "build" budget small, the list of new parts was short. It was pared down to only the essentials for protecting the investment but with one creature comfort, that being heated grips. The 990 had been the first machine I had owned to sport heated grips. They had been such a season-extender that I had decided early on that any machine from then on would have them. A skid plate had saved the 990 on more than one occaison and the new machine would get a proper one to replace the stock plastic one, before it ever saw service on or off the road.

    The new bike had built in luggage rack attachments but they would not work with my old beat up, tried and true luggage that I had kept from the 990. The new factory bags that would work would set me back $1600.00 and I just could not afford, or justify that now with payments to make. They honestly looked a bit flimsy by comparison to the nearly indestructible, if weathered, Gobi hard-bags that had served me for so long and through many off-road crashes and miles. Thankfully, for a few hundred dollars, new racks that would work were available for the new 1090, allowing me to reuse the existing luggage. The old top case, again recycled from the 990, would fit nicely on the new bike with an economical rear rack swap from another KTM model, the 1290 R.

    _MG_0514.jpg

    An inexpensive adaptor plate and brackets allowed for the replacement of the stock street-fender with a dirt bike style high-fender and lower fork-guards. A little bit of trial and error allowed me to settle on a suitable new fender, not liking the one that came in the kit. This modification would allow for travel through the occaisional wet clay area we see in southern Alberta. This was another experience-based modification from the previous machine, and was the reason behind this expenditure. Larger footpegs, off-road folding-mirrors and a battery charger that were recycled from the previous machine completed the budget-build. Even the bike cover that had been passed on from the last two bikes fit the new machine and kept it dust free while it waited to see service come spring.

    IMAG0861.jpg

    I was ready for Spring, as was the new bike and it was only February 2nd. The exciting new Era would have to wait for nature to set the start date.
  14. xscoobysnack

    xscoobysnack Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2006
    Oddometer:
    363
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta
    Great write up, Lee. Hopefully the new bike will fill the void left by the 990 and it treats you well. I'm starting to get the same cabin fever too. I have new rubber, top case, GPS, and other goodies just waiting for spring. Seems a long way away right now.
    powderzone and Lycan1 like this.
  15. Cal

    Cal Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,716
    Location:
    Calgary
    Nice write up Lee, Senior citizen status? I've already achieved that lol and I am still going strong, heading to Phoenix on Feb 16th to ride the Strom for 4 weeks in Mexico.
    Like you I have been working on a bike during the cold weather( Super Sherpa), the problem with winter bike projects is they tend to cost a lot of money!
    Lycan1 likes this.
  16. powderzone

    powderzone Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2016
    Oddometer:
    775
    Location:
    Calgary
    Lee, you are going to love the 1090! It’s a great adventure platform and will do an admirable job replacing the dragon 990.
    cal08 and Lycan1 like this.
  17. jfman

    jfman Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    3,079
    Location:
    Montreal (traveling Americas June '17 to May '18)
    Is the 990 sold?
  18. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,088
    Location:
    Calgary
    Yes,Gone like the wind.

    Or in the words of James T. Kirk:

    "This ship and her history will shortly become the care of another crew. To them and their posterity will we commit our future. They will continue the voyages we have begun and journey to all the undiscovered countries, boldly going where no man - where no one - has gone before."

    IMG_0563.jpg
    Photo by Redcat.
  19. jfman

    jfman Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2012
    Oddometer:
    3,079
    Location:
    Montreal (traveling Americas June '17 to May '18)
    How much did you get for it.

    I been dreaming of putting a boring motor in a 990 for traveling and I am curious how much a 990 with a blown motor sells for.
  20. dammitdave

    dammitdave Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,640
    Location:
    Port Townsend, WA
    Just finished this thread last night. Wow! Great write ups and superlative photography. I grew up with kids from the Alberta Ranch outside Pincher Creek. I got to see photos of the ranch last fall and yes that is beautiful country. I've been collecting notes and routes from the thread and adding them to the bucket. Thanks Lycan, Call, Floss et al for the route info and photos and commentary. dd
    Lycan1 likes this.