I recommend the Kings 966. It is a popular tire here with those that travel to Baja. My other recommendation would be the Mefo Explorer if you can find them and don't mind spending $200 on a set of tires. The Kings are around $120 for a set.
It's hard to beat a mefo explorer 99 for long range touring.They handle gravel,sand,and dirt roads very well,plus they're quite on the blacktop. In mud at lower tire pressures they do ok.I'm talking being on a dirt road and get caught in the rain type mud.You have to watch the front tire pressure closely,or you will develop a ridge.i have been able to get over 11,000 miles out of the rear and strangly only about 9,000 out of the front .I also run the tkc 80s here in the east during winter thru to spring,and like them for the rainy season.They don't do as well on wet roads as the mefos,but handle the sloppy back roads better.I put the mefos on around the first of may and run them till fall.Only expect at the most 3,000/3,500 miles out of the tkcs.
I think the answer depends on your intentions for these tires. I've read enough stories where people buy very aggressive off-road tires for one time use for a specific trip that barely meet DOT streetable standards. They plan to abuse the piss out of the tires figuring they should be toast after the trip and then they'll swap back to a better dualsport tire afterwards. If you plan to use the same set after the trip, I'd have to agree with the Mefo Explorers as well. Mine have held up great and have improved both on and off road equally.
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