How NOT To Ride - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 12:44 AM Thread Starter
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How NOT To Ride

Out exploring last Sunday and scouting out a mountain I'm prepping to climb, I got into an un-familiar situation and came off the worse for it.



I'm still new to this aspect, but was doing fine on gravel, going by what you guys had said - hold the grips loosely, keep moderate speed, (20 - 30 mph) and let the bike find its own way. It worked good and I was feeling good about it. Then I hit bull rock.



This wasn't so good. Going in, uphill, was sorta fine but pretty shaky. When I finally got turned around (and dumped it while doing so) I found that going downhill was a whole 'nuther story and dumped it several more times. I was done....wore plumb out. If it had gone down again it would've laid there while I hiked out several miles. That sucker is heavy, the rock was deep, there was no traction.....

Any secrets of riding in this awful stuff that you could share with me ?? I'm too damned old for that sh*t.

The last mile I straddled the bike with my feet down and rode down a rut at a slow walking speed so that my feet could reach the center hump and side berm. It were a long quarter mile and I was completely thrashed.

............Lar.
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post #2 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 01:23 AM
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That's tough riding, man. Done it. Don't enjoy it. How's your bike?




"In a car you're always in a compartment, and because you're used to it you don't realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV." R. Pirsig

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Click my handle for a link to my homepage/blog...which has nothing to do with MCs. Free literature and music! Viva La Revolucion!
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RIP DM - Soon, we ride.
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post #3 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Lockjaw View Post
That's tough riding, man. Done it. Don't enjoy it. How's your bike?
Thanks. Bike is OK, paint on right fairing scratched some - went down on that side every time. I did learn a lesson - next time down there, I'll take the quad. Back is still a little tender.
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post #4 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 02:12 AM
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Yeah, man. Remember, it's supposed to be fun.




"In a car you're always in a compartment, and because you're used to it you don't realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV." R. Pirsig

PPMC #1.
Soon, we ride.

AKA JD Mader or you can call me "Dan" just not early for dinner.

Click my handle for a link to my homepage/blog...which has nothing to do with MCs. Free literature and music! Viva La Revolucion!
-------------------
2008 KLR 650
RIP DM - Soon, we ride.
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post #5 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 04:21 AM
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What you call bull rock I call baby heads. I got nothing there on technique other than lowering tire pressure and standing on the pegs with my clenched butt pointing rearward to anticipate (falling over) as you have already demonstrated...haha. That is the most difficult riding scenario for me what you have described. Glad you are OK.

The only other thing I can suggest is to ride with a buddy in terrain like that or at least carry a Spot http://www.findmespot.com/en/ so that someone can come and carry my broken body and bike out.
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post #6 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 08:13 AM
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At least in my book, that doesn't qualify as "gravel." Them's straight-up "rocks." Glad to hear the bike is okay and you're okay and you are to be commended for taking the time to snap a pic of your KLR taking a nap and sharing it with us. I hate riding (or trying to ride) on that stuff and really don't mind that there's none around here where I live now.

Were I forced to ride on that stuff, I would have been incorporating the "egress method" you described in your last sentence. It definitely calls for MX-type boots to keep from injuring an ankle.

I'm with you, man. Were I going back there and didn't have a smaller, lighter bike, I'd be on an ATV.



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post #7 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 01:10 PM
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Flash makes a good call. That's a dangerous place to ride alone, man. If you go back, make sure people know where you are or bring a buddy to laugh at.

And yeah, that's about the only time I put my feet down while the bike is moving...when I'm cursing those GD baby heads.




"In a car you're always in a compartment, and because you're used to it you don't realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV." R. Pirsig

PPMC #1.
Soon, we ride.

AKA JD Mader or you can call me "Dan" just not early for dinner.

Click my handle for a link to my homepage/blog...which has nothing to do with MCs. Free literature and music! Viva La Revolucion!
-------------------
2008 KLR 650
RIP DM - Soon, we ride.
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post #8 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by biglar View Post

This wasn't so good. Going in, uphill, was sorta fine but pretty shaky. When I finally got turned around (and dumped it while doing so) I found that going downhill was a whole 'nuther story and dumped it several more times. I was done....wore plumb out. If it had gone down again it would've laid there while I hiked out several miles. That sucker is heavy, the rock was deep, there was no traction.....

Any secrets of riding in this awful stuff that you could share with me ?? I'm too damned old for that sh*t.

The last mile I straddled the bike with my feet down and rode down a rut at a slow walking speed so that my feet could reach the center hump and side berm. It were a long quarter mile and I was completely thrashed.

............Lar.

1st rule of off-road riding look where you want your front tire to go! Look through the section and plan a route don't just roll into and hope for the best. Sometimes that's unavoidable but you should be looking for an escape.

Downhills with loose rock is about the worst. Leave the bike in low gear and modulate speed with the front brake not the back. The back wheel will just lock up on hills like that. Stand and put your butt over the back fender also. Don't let your speed get away from you, kill the motor if you have to but leave it in gear don't pull in the clutch unless you want instant acceleration!

Stay out of ruts going downhill they tend to get bigger on the way down! Riding off to the side of the trail usually is better also, not as chewed up.

You have less traction on loose surfaces so weighting the pegs is even more important. On off-camber type turns you want to the weight the downhill peg more and keep the bike leaned away from the hill.

1 last thing when you really can't ride down the hill bulldog the bike down. Get off the bike and stand on the side so you can hold the bars. Leave it in gear motor off use the front brake and slip and slide to the bottom. Not gracefull but if the bike gets away you can let it go instead of going for a ride!

Wait another last thing, get crash bars. The radiator costs $700!

No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him. 1 Cor 2:9

Last edited by klr4evr; 12-06-2012 at 03:19 PM.
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post #9 of 23 Old 12-06-2012, 03:21 PM
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Been there, done that, now avoid it.

Had a similar experience. After going down a few times turned around and went back the direction I came. Scratcher the "road" off of my to do list.

My Kaw Barn - 2004 KLR, 2006 Concours (sold), 1997 Bayou 400.

"It's a friggen motorcycle, it's not supposed to be comfortable, quiet or safe. The wind noise is supposed to hurt your ears, the seat should be hard and riding it should make you shit your pants every now and then. "

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post #10 of 23 Old 12-07-2012, 12:07 AM
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Great advice to bring someone with you if you need help or get hurt. I crashed about two years ago in the hills behind my house. Been riding them for almost 35 years. That day, my son was with me, after the first crash, I was hurting and lost a lot of my normal concentration, I crashed two more times on such simple stuff that it was embarrassing. What happened was I became so concerned about crashing that it happened due to my fear. Relaxing and riding is much safer, getting tense and fearful is causation for more problems.

Glad you got out of there safe. I have a kawasaki klx250s and it is much easier to pick up.
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