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Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - Central, Texas & Gulf States' started by Jeff@TheQuadShop, Sep 12, 2013.
I will be heading down there Thursday night or early Friday morning.
I'm glad you played it safe and didn't get hurt. I have wondered a lot about riding the KAT alone, but if I'm being honest with myself I'm probably not ready for the type of riding you were doing in the vid. Maybe I can make some new friends!
great video. is that the "standard" route or is that any of the "hard" sections?
thinking to ride it in a few weeks with a couple of friends and trying to figure out some plans and logistics. and routes. :)
So a couple of us are considering riding the KAT around the middle to end of July. Not sure of the group yet, I think around 3-5 of us, most of us on KTM 950 (at least a couple of super enduros).
Tentative plan would be to start at Jellico as its' easy access off 75 (most of us would be coming from the south). Had a couple of questions:
1) clockwise or counter clockwise?? or wing it and see how the weather is looking with regards to rain and water crossings. Seems I read in the thread that most of the bigger water crossings were on the western sides, so if it's dry start there, or if it's raining head counter clockwise (east) and hit those later?
2) hotels/lodging- ideally we'd like to wing it and stay at hotels as the need arises (i.e.. see how far we can get each day and then find nearby lodging). Is this feasible this time of year? or do we need reservations? Assuming the heat will be bad so we need to concentrate on water/hydration and staying cool (vented gear, etc).
3) difficulty- guessing it's not a walk in the park on the standard route from watching videos. We enjoy a challenge but don't want to be stupid about it and hate ourselves half way into the ride. I've watched some of the "hard section" videos and except for step up rock ledges and big trees to get over, might not be way out of our league (especially if there are a couple of us to spot some sections). I"m guessing we'll hit the standard loop and if we are getting bored (lol) then hit a few of the hard sections that are shorter. Has anyone rated the difficulty of the harder sections? For instance I ride at Highland Park outside of Atlanta on my 950 fairly often. I"m pretty comfortable on the 2 and 3 diamond trails and have done most of the 4 diamond stuff on the 950 but the 5 diamond stuff would crush me. Like Hard 11 looked awesome except for the gulley towards the end (in the video, seems he might have found a bypass around it?) and maybe one rocky step up somewhere along the trail).
That's all I can think of right now, still working on some plans and group, but figured I'd start with some questions before I get too far into it.
BTW huge props to Jeff for putting together this trail. I've ridden with some friends in WV and out west in CO and it'll be nice to stay closer to home but still do a multi day trip. This looks like fun.
1) Yep you are spot on, let it be weather dependent. The west side does have a lot more water crossings.
2) You should be fine without unless it 4th of July weekend
3) It's really dependent on your skills on those bikes when off road and the tires that you are running. A rating system doesn't really work as the weather can play a major roll in how difficult it is. Last years monsoon rains have made some of what I consider pretty easy trails into hard trails because of major washouts. I did find that bypass around that spot on Hard 11 but it's kind of tuff getting up and over the bank, it's also pretty offcamber and could be super slick when wet.
That is on the main section, it has been washed out badly by the last years worth of rain.
"Record Rainfall" as in, most rain annually in the history of Kentucky. (On par this year too I think...)
I fixed that for you.
thanks Jeff that helps. I typically ride with full off road tires on the 950, Pirelli Scorpion SX front and recently a MotoZ Tractionator Desert HT rear. Works pretty well in most off road conditions. We are looking at a window from July 14-24th, will probably just wait and see when the weather looks best in that window and hit the road. Jellico is only about 4 or 5 hours from home, so that'll be good.
totally understand the relative rating on trails, especially when wet. I've raced a couple of hare scrambles on the 950 but if it's wet, all bets are off (and I tend to stay home). I've ridden a lot of the passes in CO on the Super Enduro, but miles of rocks take their toll. This past year we did Hancock, Cinnamon, Cumberland, Napoleon, Tin Cup, Tomichi, Picanyune Gulch, California, Black Bear, Hurricane, Corkscrew and Imogene pass. amazing trip and good times with some good friends.
It sounds like with your experience you’ll be good to go!
Yeah. I tried to be as prepared as I could. Pulley system for bike
I think on the boards here and a rally helps. I've met some good dudes this way.
I plan on being there to ride the most technical offroad stuff we can find. I hope to be there by noon on Thursday and ready to ride.
Have you been down before?
Yes, I took a couple short trips last summer and rode some sections of the KAT and DBBB. I fell in love with the area and riding options there.
Any reports of recent trail conditions? Planning on heading out Saturday for 2 days on the western section between Slade and London.
I think it's pretty good right now but we are supposed to get more rain this week.
so it looks like there's a group of us hitting the trail around July 16-17th from Jellico. More than likely heading clockwise unless the weather dictates otherwise. Two of us on 950 Super Enduros, one on a 650 Terra, one on a KTM 525, possibly a WR450 (tagged) and maybe another KTM 520/525.
Planning on the main loop and if the weather co-operates trying at least a few of the hard sections, and a few of the group may try to run most/all of them as well. Roughly how much pavement is there on the main loop? asking for the WR rider. :)
If anyone has any suggestions for any of the hard sections to avoid (given decent weather) on the bigger bikes, input is welcome. We are used to riding true single track on the 950's but don't want to get in way over our heads. Challenges are good, Erzberg level riders we are not. lol. Seems like I read in the thread that 3, 4, and 5 are harder than some of the others? of course it would be that we hit Hard 6 first then 5, 4, 3, etc.
I'm getting excited.
I've never really figured up the mileage of blacktop vs dirt. Most people are glad to see some bt every now and then after hours in the dirt. The black top that is on the loop is fantastic even on a dirt bike in my opinion.
As far as sections to avoid, it really depends on how good of a rider you are in those conditions on those bikes. I suggest watching as many YouTube video's as you can then draw our own conclusions. Here are mine... https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLp6-QbRLhwFvt6EwKPaRi1Wzm5Ma1OhoU
I've been watching a lot of them. Lots of them. :) hard to figure if they are clockwise or counter, and as always it's hard to tell slope on videos.
Here's the 3 day loop we did last spring (+SM500+/Tellico Adventure trail) with 5 of us on 950 SE's. We had a ball. Well, except for squally creek, kicked our asses. Hard on an enduro bike, add in the rain, cold, and a few tired riders, it took us a while. Need to go back and do the full pull this fall. The first 7 minutes is the stuff we ride all the time, but the 7-9 minute section was what left us wanting.
Direction doesn't make a difference on difficulty.
A group of us from Virginia are planning a KAT trip. We plan to stay at hotels. We have sketched out a plan and I was hoping for some input. Primarily, please provide any input on length of these days. We dont want to kill ourselves but want to try to complete it in 5 days. Big bikes, main route, no hard sections, Hatfield bypass. Thanks in advance.
Day 1: Williamson - Slade, 196 miles.
Day 2: Slade - Willimsburg, 228 miles.
Day 3: Williamsburg - Middleboro, 221 miles.
Day 4: Middleboro - Elkhorn, 180 miles.
Day 5: Elkhorn - Williamson, 114 miles.
There was no waypoint for a hotel in Elkhorn but we seem to have found one (Gateway hotel). Any input on it or the other hotels in the areas mentioned?