Stuck under AT

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by VikingMoto, Apr 4, 2020.

  1. VikingMoto

    VikingMoto Adventurer

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    I just posted this on the ATAS forum, but thought it also belonged here:

    I just had the unfortunate experience of being stuck under the bike. The rear-passenger foot peg mount pegged my foot in place, and I could not for the life of me get my foot out. Lifting the bike was out of the question from a prone position, and I ended up having to use the SOS button on my Garmin. Pretty embarrassing, to be honest, to just need the first responders to lift the bike off my foot. I was uninjured as I always ATGATT and we got the bike back up and I went on with my trip. I have taken off the offending rear foot peg mounts, and will continue to pay for my Garmin subscription as well as the extra insurance they have if they have come get you.
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  2. Husky360C

    Husky360C Been here awhile

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    It's fortunate you came out of this incident unhurt.
    Thanks for posting this - it could be a valuable lesson for others.

    The risk of events like what you described above is why I sold my two KTM 950s ( 430 pound bikes ) and replaced them with a KTM 690 that weighs 330 pounds. Oddly enough, the 330 pound bike is as fast as the larger bike, at least in terms that relate to riding on public roads ( up to 100mph it's a toss-up, faster than that and the 950 would walk away ).

    The lighter bike has much better braking performance ( it requires less distance to stop ) because there is less mass for the brakes and tires to deal with. Overall, I believe I am significantly safer riding the smaller lighter bike, even if I never need to lift the bike after it has fallen over.
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  3. VikingMoto

    VikingMoto Adventurer

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    I was thinking as I was laying there, that a lighter bike would be the way to go!
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  4. Husky360C

    Husky360C Been here awhile

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    I dropped my 950 SE a couple of times in conditions ( greasy wet clay ) which made it very difficult ( actually given my personal lack of strength it was downright impossible ) for me to pick it up without help. The problem was the bike would slide sideways rather than allow itself to be picked up. Several times I was lucky in that I was able to find help within 30 minutes or so. But it occurred to me that some day, help was not going to be available, and on that day I'd be walking out.

    I struggled with the decision of whether to sell the big bikes for months, but having owned the smaller bike for a year now, it's obvious I made the right call for my needs. Of course what works for me might not work for someone else, YMMV, etc.
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  5. VikingMoto

    VikingMoto Adventurer

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    I think I will eventually move to a lighter bike. I am waiting to see what happens with the 850 (or whatever cc it ends up being) AT. To really make a difference in my particular situation, though, the bike would probably have to be 350lbs or less. Even a CB500X weighs 430lbs wet, or a KTM 790R weighs around 470 wet (I think), which I am not sure would have made a difference as far as being able to lift it straight up from my position on the ground with one foot stuck under the rear foot peg support. I can get the mighty ATAS up when I flop over, just not when I am pinned under it!
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  6. Husky360C

    Husky360C Been here awhile

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    No matter which manufacturer you prefer, the twin-cylinder bikes from all the mainstream manufacturers are all going to be too heavy when things get ugly. It costs more money than most people are willing or able to pay to make a twin cylinder bike which weighs 350 pounds or less. But it is possible :

    https://www.cycleworld.com/ncr-ducati-titanium-parts-custom-motorcycles/

    Back in the real world, a single-cylinder bike is the realistic way for most of us to get a lighter bike. The guy who calls himself "The Rolling Hobo" has some really interesting insights based on his experiences, and his website is worth reading :

    https://therollinghobo.com/bikes
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  7. PeterW

    PeterW Long timer

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    Just a comment, you can have accidents on far lighter bikes as well. I remember a friend getting flipped into a wire fence and hung upside down and stuck between the bike and fence - he was riding a TS-185, far lighter than most modern small bikes and he'd still be there if he hadn't had others with him.

    Just be more careful where you ride alone, I won't ride places solo that don't have some through traffic for this exact reason.
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  8. Husky360C

    Husky360C Been here awhile

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    The accident your friend had is a freak occurrence, and not a credible argument against lighter bikes being easier to deal with when things go wrong, nor does it mean that a heaver bike doesn't present greater risks when riding off road.




    Some of us do not want where or when we ride limited by a need for other people to be around. It's called "adventure" for a reason :D
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  9. VikingMoto

    VikingMoto Adventurer

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    I have never owned a single-cylinder bike; don't they vibrate like crazy? Or have they solved that for the most part? As for riding alone, I usually am in places where people come by eventually, but I think, if I am honest, that I am still working on making good decisions when traction or conditions get sketchy. It isn't always clear to me what is possible and what isn't, and I tend to err on the side of going for it. I will say, though, that I am learning from my experiences since I don't want to be insane by doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.
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  10. Husky360C

    Husky360C Been here awhile

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    Some single cylinder bikes vibrate a lot more than others. I would not reject all single cylinder bikes on the basis that they might vibrate. Better to look at bikes on a "case by case" basis and judge a bike on its individual merits.

    After a fair amount of effort and some money spent on a few parts for my bike, I've managed to get my KTM 690 to vibrate less than many twin cylinder bikes do ( the local KTM shop manager rode my bike and was amazed at how smooth it is now ). It was for me absolutely worth the time and money spent, because now I have a reasonably light bike that is comfortable for longer rides and can be ridden into areas I'd probably choose to avoid on a bike that weighed a lot more. The bike has a wider range of use for me than a larger heavier bike, in other words.

    What you describe about your riding would make a good case for you buying a second ( possibly used, smaller & much lighter ) bike that could be used to gain experience so your build your base of riding experience while reducing the risk you incur during this phase of your riding. A 250cc dual sport bike might serve you well for gaining such experience. There are numerous threads already on Advrider devoted to such questions, and you can learn a lot by reading such threads.

    In theory you could buy a used bike and ride it for a year and re-sell it for the same money you paid for it. I've done this many times. If you buy a bike that is in demand in the current market, and pay a reasonable price for it, you can end up having the use of the bike for a low cost.
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  11. ShaftEd

    ShaftEd Long timer

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    Couple years ago we had an AT rider post a thread in Face Plant section about riding his AT very slowly through a mud puddle, having the bike slide out from under him and the passenger peg bracket broke his tib/fib. While the OP's adventure was embarrassing, I guess it could have been a lot worse.
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  12. Pantah

    Pantah Jiggy Dog Fan Supporter

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    I feel your pain. Last week I dropped my AT in my driveway. Most of my neighbors are older than me and I am 71! In any event I couldn't pick that pig up so I called my AMA roadside service and 30 minutes later a tow truck drove up. I explained I simply needed help picking it up. 5 seconds later she was on her side stand. It was a great relief. A few years ago I dropped the same bike off my trailer. Fortunately the development landscape crew was right up the street and they helped that time.

    I only use my AT for touring now. I learned early on it was too top heavy for anything but maintained dirt roads in my hands. I have an older KTM 690 I use for dirt but even that is a struggle for me to pick up. I have a few times, though. Probably for me I should always have a riding partner if I'm going to be much off the grid.
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  13. shrederscott

    shrederscott Long timer

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    Hard to understand how being stuck UNINJURED under your bike is a life threatening situation. Without other factors ... Like weather, med needs

    Seems like a misuse of the Garmin 911 system !

    Why did you not text a friend via Garmin for help ??

    Why did you not simply simply wait for someone to come along, or work harder at self extraction ??

    Hard to imagine a AT being on that remote of a road.

    In my mind you should not be embarrassed ...you should have been charge for the cost of a unnecessary emergency search and recovery operation !!!

    You had the tools to send text msgs to friends and family requesting help !!!

    Scott
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  14. VikingMoto

    VikingMoto Adventurer

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    I am just a namby-pamby, what can I say :) I did try to self-rescue for at least an hour with all the tools at my disposal. I also thought about just hanging out and waiting for someone to show up, but it was getting late and I was at 6400 elevation on a road that didn't have any traffic on it that I saw (Breckingridge Road, south of Isabella Lake) and the temperature was dropping quickly. I was also concerned about loosing circulation in my toes and possibly loosing one or more (I use my toes all the time, so I prefer to keep them). I kept wiggling them to keep the blood flowing to them. The nearest relative was 350 miles away, so they wouldn't have gotten there until the next morning even if they had left right away. The guys that came were from the town of Lake Isabella and were fire; an ambulance also came although I had told them via text that I didn't need an ambulance, but I guess it is standard procedure to send one. I supposed I could have broken my foot to get it out, but that didn't seem like a very good option. Like I said, I guess I am just spineless and feeble. :)
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  15. shrederscott

    shrederscott Long timer

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    Now I feel certain

    You should have been charged for miss-use of search and rescue ! !

    Some many other options ... Including simply asking for a tow truck to be dispatched to you .... Your relatives even 300+miles away could have done that !!

    You had a two way text system that was operational ....6500 is NOT high elevation ! ! Possible lost of a toe .. painful ..not life threatening ! ! ..standard nightly temp drop at 6500 feet not life threatening in adv gear ! !

    Your miss-use of search and rescue personal could have cost someone in real need their lives .... What if a fire broke out at cabin and got out of control cause you had the needed fire resources tired up ? ?

    Keep in mind rural areas have LIMITED emergency response resources, you tied up two valuable teams and their equipment ... You were NOT in a life threatening situation or even INJURED ! !

    This is not a sport for a "spineless, febble namby panby"

    Nor is it a sport for one who simply wants to joke about misuse of emergency services instead of realizing you made a error and learn from this experience.

    It would be wise if you found another hobby

    Scott
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  16. VikingMoto

    VikingMoto Adventurer

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    All excellent points.
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  17. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    You should always carry a saw so you can cut off your foot. Don't want to bother anyone.
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  18. shrederscott

    shrederscott Long timer

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    Miss-use of emergency personal and equipment in rural mountian areas is not a joking matter.

    Where I live, (Colorado) this is a serious issue ... Our SAR teams, our emergency response resources are very limited....this type of miss-use of emergency services is a serious problem ... Especially in the more touristy communities.

    Scott
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  19. Husky360C

    Husky360C Been here awhile

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    The OP clearly indicated he was trapped. If he had ended up staying overnight, the OP could have been preyed upon by animals while he was trapped under the bike. There's a great short story about such a scenario, worth a read if you like that sort of thing :

    http://www.eastoftheweb.com/short-stories/UBooks/Inte.shtml

    At that altitude, hypothermia could have become a real problem, overnight. What began as a non-emergency had potential to become a much worse situation in a matter of hours. Asking for help before things got really ugly was a wise choice, and there is no shame in having done so.

    Now, if the OP continues to ride a large heavy bike into terrain which requires skills he may not yet have, and ends up asking for help from emergency services again and again, the OP would for sure be deserving of harsh criticism. But the OP made a mistake, as most of us have. It's how we learn and improve. What the OP decides to do next regarding where he rides and which bikes he uses will indicate whether the OP gained from his experience.

    The large adventure bikes are all marketed in a manner that is deceptive, and the manufacturers should be ashamed of this. The truth about large adventure bikes is that most riders are not capable of using them like Jimmy Lewis or Chris Birch can, and some riders discover the realities of 500 pound motorcycles "the hard way". A large adventure bike is a poor tool for serious off road riding. When you see guys like Pyndon or Lukas M riding around the world on a KTM 690 rally bike, that should tell you something, because those guys could ride a larger bike if they wanted to, but they know better so they chose smaller lighter bikes. If expert-level riders chose smaller bikes, those of us who are less skilled ( myself included ! ) would do well to make similar choices.



    Suggestion to the OP : If what happened to you had happened to me, I'd make sure I dropped by the fire station where the guys who helped you are headquartered, with some good pizza and really good beer, at shift change time. It's never a mistake to take the time to express appreciation to the people who have helped you, whether it was "their job" or not. Most of the time people don't thank the folks who put their lives on the line for others, and that's a real shame, because they deserve thanks.
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  20. Husky360C

    Husky360C Been here awhile

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    You know, some people do :

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aron_Ralston

    However, I bet Aron Ralston wishes he'd been carrying an emergency beacon.
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