The TAT Preparation Thread-the logistical side of it

Discussion in 'Americas' started by leftystrat62, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. SCflyer

    SCflyer Long timer

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    It's hit or miss on wx. I rode it in May from TN to OK starting on the 7th. and was overall not bad but you never know. For the most part I came in behind the wx and then it's higher water (didn't have a real problem - stop and take a look esp. if solo. better to walk what you could have ridden vs drowning the bike or hurting yourself) and mud. When you get into N Central OK the roads are long straight mix of dirt/gravel or just dirt that get pretty much impassable when mudded up. Also have drilling going on with the big trucks using the same roads - deep ruts.
    -
  2. Icecold Dan

    Icecold Dan Been here awhile

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    I feel dumb asking, but I've been racking my brain trying to figure out what wx is?
  3. joefromsf

    joefromsf Dark Happens Supporter

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    wx = weather
  4. Icecold Dan

    Icecold Dan Been here awhile

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    Duh. Thanks.
  5. kingrj

    kingrj Been here awhile

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    You should not have any problems as long as you don't try mountain passes other than those that are paved and plowed..
  6. Icecold Dan

    Icecold Dan Been here awhile

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    Thanks all.
  7. leftystrat62

    leftystrat62 Adventurer

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    I liked it-quite an amazing ride. It was actually your ride report that encouraged me to go for it solo-still one of my all time favorite ride report's. I don't remember if you shared in your report how you felt (physically & mentally) going at it solo, but I found 5000 miles solo across the country in some very remote places --well let's just say it was challenging.

    On another note for those following this thread, I wont be doing a ride report,but plan on doing an update on the trip now that I've completed it.
  8. oldtrucks

    oldtrucks Been here awhile

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    I'm interested in hearing your thoughts, areas where you had problems...
  9. leftystrat62

    leftystrat62 Adventurer

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    Hey Oldtrucks, I'll try to put get my thoughts together on that and post ,because that's the kind of information I was in search of when I started this thread.

    Here's a few tasty treats from my trip. cheers

    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]
  10. leftystrat62

    leftystrat62 Adventurer

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    Keeping in the spirit of the "Logistical Side" of this thread,I thought I'd give an update now that I've completed the TAT.

    Rhode Island to Oregon: Aug 11-Aug 31 (21days),5024 miles, one flat

    Left on new Dunlop 606 rear, Pirelli MT 21 front--made it to Moab for new tires,but needed a new rear before I reached CO. Carried about 90 lbs total of gear/food/water(I weighed about 185lbs at start-finished about 165lbs) Kept tire pressure around 22 psi most of the time.

    10 nights in hotels- $ 662
    11 nights camping-$37
    Food/water-$225
    Gas $ 370

    I'm pretty sure if I was riding with someone,it would have probably taken me a few more days,and probably shorter days. I had originally given myself 30+ days for the trip,hoping to spend a few extra days in CO & UT,but I didn't. I only experienced a little bit of rain in TN & one killer storm riding out of the WRT/Moab,but I also adjusted some of my riding to stay ahead of rain and extreme heat (boy is that a relative term). So there were a few time I opted to stay on pavement but no complaints.

    I'm sharing this information because this is some of the info I was looking for prior to my trip that can be difficult to find in TAT RR's-hopefully it's helpful:
    Day1:565 mi-13hrs
    Day2: 400mi-12 hrs
    Day3: 230mi-10hrs STARTED TAT
    Day4:260mi-10.5 hrs
    Day5:330-11.5hrs
    Day6:282mi-11.5hrs
    Day7: ?, long day
    Day 8:239 mi, -6.5hrs
    Day9: 397mi- 10hrs
    Day10:230mi-9.5 hrs
    Day11: 255mi-12.5hrs
    Day12 170mi.-6hrs
    Day 13 White Rim Trail-7hrs
    Day 14: 203mi-7hrs
    Day15: 320mi-7.5hrs
    Day16 120mi-5.5hrs
    Day17: 150mi-8hrs
    Day 18: 285mi-6hrs
    Day19: 200mi- 9hrs
    Day 20: 210mi-9.5hrs
    Day21:reached coast in a few hrs

    Some must haves for me on this trip:
    Garmin Montana GPS with 100k topo-worked fantastic,can't imagine using just roll charts/maps-that's all I needed even though I carried maps
    Cooling vest

    Few things I should have left home:
    small light weight collapsable wash basin-(was going to use to wash clothes while camping)
    light weight tarp for camping
    heated gloves /jacket

    You can see everything I took at the very beginning of this thread. If I was on the trail through the end of Sept. as planned,then I would have wanted the heated gear(used it at the very beginning and very end)

    Now some of my impressions of the trip.

    First I'd first like to say what a monumental task Sam achieved in creating the TAT. If you've never been out West as I have not,it's quite impressive riding these remote dirt tracks. The 2 days in TN were mostly pavement,but day 2 was sweet. MS had some nice off road but probably a 50/50 mix? The end of MS and 1st half of AR was flat with grid like farmland,but the Ozark Mtns. were sweet. OK for me was hot,flat and was my least favorite. Loved the little bit of NM,of course CO &UT were killer! NV was less exciting than the previous 2 states,but beautiful and challenging. I'd say I found NV with the sandy sections and heat the toughest for me-a close 2nd to OK. OR was a breath of fresh air with the reintroduction of trees and cooler temps.
    Since I've never done any riding away from the East coast,it was incredible to see the country unfold before my eyes for the very first time. If you like adventure-this trip won't disappoint. Don't be fooled by the nice pictures and ride reports that you can read from your arm chair-it's a challenge from start to finish. Toughest part for me was the SUN,then the heat,then the difficulty of staying properly hydrated and nourished. I didn't mind the long days in the saddle,but that's just my riding style. I've never ridden in areas where you can ride for 10 hrs and only find 2 or 3 spots to rest in the shade, thus why my cooling vest was a life saver.
    If I knew what I know now... I would have left close to the end of Aug and finished at the end of Sept. I handle the cold much better than the heat. The temps that time of the year were the high 80's-low 90's every day all the way across (96 on the WRT). Not as tough in TN even with the humidity because of the intermittent shade,but after the Ozark Mtns I don't think I found shade until OR:lol3
    Final thoughts: If you go for it solo be prepared for the mental challenge of doing it all alone for so long. I prepared for this trip for a long time and took it very serious-I'm glad I did. If your on the fence about it-just go for it,you'll be glad you did.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  11. PatrickInVA

    PatrickInVA Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the follow-up! There is some great miles/day and cost information in your post.
  12. Deanman

    Deanman Wannabe Adventurer

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    Hi everyone,
    Awesome thread, I'm just starting to plan a TAT trip this summer. I'll be solo, and plan to ride back roads from home (Port Angeles, WA) East to the Atlantic somewhere, (I figure I'll be so close, why not go from ocean to ocean?) then ride back to the West coast on the TAT.

    I'll be on a DR650 with the usual mods, including 5 gallon tank, and need to do the trip on the cheap. I plan on roughly 8 weeks to go there and back again. I like to travel at a leisurely pace and stop early. It will be a vacation, after all. :1drink

    I see Sam now sells GPS tracks for the trip. :clap

    So, my question is: Since I'm on a budget, and my odometer is not accurate, I'm wondering how I would do just buying and using the GPS tracks, and not buying the roll charts/maps. What do the maps/roll charts give me that I wouldn't get with the tracks? I imagine there is a bunch of good info but could I get by without it? Again, I'm not looking for hotels, and tend to avoid pay campgrounds whenever possible.

    Thanks everyone for all the excellent info, pics, and inspiration.

    Dean
  13. Clem Kevin

    Clem Kevin Nude With Boots

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    I would only do this if you had a second GPS as backup. I brought the roll charts with me and there were times where the GPS couldn't provide the directions I needed, and I could scroll through the rollcharts to get things figured out.
  14. rtwdoug

    rtwdoug prominent underachiever Supporter

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    there was a few places in NEV that I used both roll charts & gps. The GPS was really confused in NV. everywhere else, I just used the gps, but would look at the maps during the day as a backup, & just to see where I was in relation to civilization

    But, had I just used the roll charts, I'd probably STILL be on the TAT!

    Doug
  15. Deanman

    Deanman Wannabe Adventurer

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    Thanks for the reply. My backup gps was my first one, a 60cx, but it died and I got a zumo 660. But I use motionx on the iPhone so that is sort of a backup.

    If funds were unlimited I'd buy both but I'm really needing to do this on a shoestring.

    Maybe I'll buy roll charts just for some western states like Oregon where everyone has trouble...

    Thanks again.

  16. esp41

    esp41 Been here awhile

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    I took an extra micro SD card with me as a backup for my Garmin Montana (GPS) programming. My buddy (Kirkster) was my backup GPS. The larger maps you get with the roll chart really do a good job of keeping you oriented. I would have never made it using just the roll charts. In order for the roll charts to be of any use, you need the ability to set two different odometers to a specific mileage. Resetting to zero is not good enough. If you are going alone, at least get generic paper maps. There are places from Utah to Oregon I would not want to be without the ability to navigate. It is possible to run out of fuel before finding civilization.

    Oregon is not a problem unless you insist on staying on the "one true" TAT. Such a path does not exist. When you are lost using the GPS, just zoom out- find a road that intersects with the GPS track- and navigate to it. That technique really works anywhere on the TAT (Except for the UTAH canyons where you might have to scale a 200' rock wall to get to the road you missed. Don't ask how I know this.....)
  17. Boxall

    Boxall Adventurer Supporter

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    this is great information!
  18. Gravetter

    Gravetter Been here awhile

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    Do you mind speaking a bit more on this?

    I really want to solo it (wouldn't mind meeting up with a few riders here or there) as I really like being on my own schedule and just feel the challenge would be good for me.

    Also, I see you camped and stayed at hotels. I love to camp (backpacking) and would want to as much as possible. Where you simply wanting a room or just couldn't find a campground on the hotel nights?

    Great thread, thank you.
  19. Clem Kevin

    Clem Kevin Nude With Boots

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    Don't worry about being solo. If you're an introvert like me, it's freakin HEAVEN. Just make sure you're well versed in repairing your bike yourself and prepared for all things.
  20. rtwdoug

    rtwdoug prominent underachiever Supporter

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    if you do it alone (like I did) carry a spot tracker. theres some areas where you are miles from anyone, & its really rough. If you get hurt, you'd be screwed.
    I wouldnt suggest doing it alone, but at least spend the $ for a Spot.
    Theres alot of places out west that a cell doesnt work, but verizon has the best coverage

    Doug