USA to Argentina on a TU250 for Charity

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by sky_high12, Aug 24, 2019.

  1. sky_high12

    sky_high12 Washington, DC to Argentina on a TU250x

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2019
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Washington, D.C.
    Hi all!

    Starting Monday, I'm going to be riding my Suzuki TU250x from Washington, DC to the southern tip of Argentina 17,000+ miles through Central and South America for charity. I've been told quite a few times I won't be able to do it, and I've certainly been told I can't do it on a 250cc! And maybe they're right, but I'll be darned if I don't give it my best.

    The trip will take me around a year, and I'm doing it to raise awareness and funds for Alopecia—an autoimmune disease I have that causes spontaneous hair loss. I've founded a nonprofit called Adventures for Alopecia whose mission is to raise awareness of Alopecia, sponsor support group events along the route, and advance research.

    I built a website that outlines the adventure and includes an interactive map of the planned route: http://www.ProjectAFA.org. Feel free to check it out. I'm also collecting donations there — donations do not cover my travel expenses but rather are used to support the above mission. We're less than 10k away from our $30,000 goal!

    Donations go a long way, but if you want another way to help, just spreading awareness of the ride and the cause will help raise awareness of Alopecia to the public!

    I've also been able to announce the adventure on two TV interviews, Good Morning Washington here and Good Day PA here, in case you want to learn more.

    I've been planning this adventure for about a year now, and though this'll be my first post on this forum, I've read hundreds of your guys' posts here. Thanks to each of you for taking the time to share your insight and making this place so helpful. I hope to give back as much as I can during and after the trip (though I'll probably need to steal some more of your guys' insight at points along the trip :)

    I'll be posting updates throughout to:
    • My website http://www.ProjectAFA.org
    • My Instagram @sky_earth_water
    • AFA's Facebook @Adventures for Alopecia

    I'm extremely excited, and also kind of nervous. There will be many fun times, and some not-so-fun times. And the various dangers are forever on my mind. Your support and encouragement, will help me get through those tougher times, so thank you in advance for that. Hopefully this will provide some quality entertainment for you all :)

    Oh, and I can't forget to thank my sponsors who helped make this idea a reality:
    • GIVI
    • Koup's Cycle Shop
    • Karns Performance
    • Aether Apparel
    • Twisted Throttle
    • ROKKER Company
    • SW-MOTOTECH
    • Rocky Mountain ATV/MC
    • CycleRacks
    • AirHawk Seats
    • NEXX Helmets

    And here's my beauty, named "M": [​IMG]


    Thanks all!
    Skylar

    Attached Files:

    #1
  2. jwaller

    jwaller Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    787
    Location:
    New Braunfels, TX
    Good luck. You can do it on a TU250. I met a guy who’s ridden around the world on an XT250.

    I look forward to seeing your reports and progress.
    #2
  3. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2012
    Oddometer:
    2,076
    Location:
    Kingsmill Corner Ont.
    Good luck on your adventure. Nice to see the trip is to raise awareness of something most of us know little to nothing about. Travel safe.
    #3
  4. roadcapDen

    roadcapDen Ass, Grass or Gas, no free rides.

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,151
    Location:
    GTA, ON, CDA
    God speed!
    We have some TU250's that we teach with at our motorcycle training course, l like them.
    #4
  5. sky_high12

    sky_high12 Washington, DC to Argentina on a TU250x

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2019
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Washington, D.C.
    #5
  6. ItsNotTooLate

    ItsNotTooLate Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2015
    Oddometer:
    33
    Location:
    Long Island
    Didn't know what it was called. I had a friend in high school (it was the 80's) who must have had it, but it's funny, we never really noticed, if that makes sense. I mean we of course knew he looked different but it seemed like nobody cared. He was a really funny and nice guy and we picked on him for other stupid stuff, but the hair loss never came up. I wonder if he got it a lot younger than you? Maybe by the time we were all in high school he had already dealt with it emotionally. We kept in touch for a few years after high school and last I knew he was doing well. I'm only commenting because it never occurred to me that there was a name for his condition, nor did we even see it as a condition at the time. Anyway, God bless your trip. I wish I had the cojones to do something like what you are doing. I keep joking that I want to ride from my house here in New York to Curitiba, Brazil where my wife is from and all of the in-laws still live. She's worried that I'd get killed, and I keep saying, "maybe, but if I live through it, what living it will be." So go, live, enjoy and post pictures for us chickens who live vicariously through people like you.
    #6
  7. poolman

    poolman Gnarly Poolside Adv. Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    Oddometer:
    864
    Location:
    Darnestown, MD
    SkyHigh,

    All the best for s safe and successful trip!

    Be sure to post the trip here on AdvRider. Great trip reports get literally millions of views.
    #7
  8. sky_high12

    sky_high12 Washington, DC to Argentina on a TU250x

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2019
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Washington, D.C.
    Thanks ItsNotTooLate — it's true I consider myself lucky having Alopecia as a guy. Though it was certainly tough losing my hair (and my perceived identity) in high school, every day it becomes easier and more acceptable to be a bald guy. I'm now 25 and it's far from odd (though maybe the lack of eyebrows is still a little odd...). That said, it's a completely different story for women, children, and young adults. Much tougher on them in my opinion, and in part I'm hoping this increased awareness helps them!

    Thanks Poolman! Certainly will keep you all up-to-date on here! Currently in Alabama...soon to be crossing into Mexico in the week or so! Stay tuned..

    [​IMG]
    #8
    knight and jwaller like this.
  9. Lo Echsar

    Lo Echsar Baruch haShem Adonai

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2017
    Oddometer:
    52
    Location:
    Texas. Near the Yellow House.
    I am interested on what mods you may have done other than lights. Safe and fun travels.
    #9
  10. Juan Cruz

    Juan Cruz Just riding

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2017
    Oddometer:
    39
    Location:
    Buenos Aires - Argentina
    Count me in for this one!

    250's are more reliable than expected, just a few weeks ago a friend connected Ushuaia-Alaska in 110 days with a 250cc Honda
    You can do it !
    #10
  11. sky_high12

    sky_high12 Washington, DC to Argentina on a TU250x

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2019
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Washington, D.C.
    Made it to Mexico City! Let the real adventure begin!

    A little over 3,000 miles down. After many nights of camping in the US, one nerve-wracking border crossing into cartel-land, and some beautiful riding through the deserts and Sierra Madres of northern Mexico, I've arrived to the capital city just in time for Dia De Los Muertos!

    The bike is running well. 1 oil change so far at around 1.5k miles, and going to do another one along with a valve adjustment before I depart from the city. Did some extra welding in New Orleans to make the pannier mounting a little more sturdy. The TU handles the weight (~150lbs from me, ~150lbs from the gear) without issue.

    Also, I swapped out my after-market bench seat for the stock seat. Much more comfortable. I liked increased height, two-up functionality, and style of the bench seat more than the cruiser/pillion stock, but boy was that foam rock hard. Stock seat foam is much easier on the buttocks. My buns thank you Suzuki! Will post a more details post with all mods for the trip soon.

    Took the bike on the roughest, steepest terrain I've ever ridden outside a magical pueblo called Real De Catorce. Certainly taxed the suspension a bit, but just took it slow and she was good. Checked bolts afterwards and everything was tight. Check out the 360º video of the ride here:

    So far so good!

    Also, hit a donation milestone: $25,000 raised for Alopecia. Please spread awareness of the cause and feel free to donate @
    www.ProjectAFA.org
    https://www.instagram.com/adventuresforalopecia
    https://www.facebook.com/AdventuresForAlopecia

    Going to be staying in here in Mexico City for a week or two to recuperate, work on the bike, and enjoy Dia de los Muertos a bit. Stay tuned!

    DSC_7081.jpeg
    #11
  12. Lacedaemon

    Lacedaemon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Oddometer:
    634
    Location:
    Maryland
    I put 13,000 miles of mostly commuting on a TU250x with ~350lbs of rider+gear in under a year. It's a great bike! I finally went to a bigger bike when I wore out my second speedo cable in 3000 miles from many hours of 80+mph riding.

    I still have the bike - can't bring myself to part with it - but I don't ride it enough.

    There are a lot of folks who put way more miles on them than I did. It's a great choice for a trip like yours, especially if your average speeds are a bit more in it's comfort zone.

    Good luck!
    #12
  13. Joris van O

    Joris van O Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2015
    Oddometer:
    278
    Location:
    Netherlands
    Great to see another small bike make the long trip down! I'm currently in Tulum Mexico with my Honda 250 nighthawk. Started in Canada and heading to Patagonia too. Might meet each other on the road somewhere! :) What's your global plan/schedule (if you have one)?
    #13
    knight and roadcapDen like this.
  14. Jubalito

    Jubalito n00b

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2019
    Oddometer:
    9
    Location:
    Kyle
    That is so cool! Love that bike too!
    If you get a chance to go through Chiapas MX then I recommend visiting Tuxtla Gutierrez. Such beautiful countryside and friendly people (at least when I went many years ago).
    Look to the montainismo (mountaineering) groups for adventure support along your way.
    You will be in the land of epic caves also.
    I look forward to more posts.
    Many miles and good times for you sir!
    #14