Monday, December 18, 2017

Wild Bear Safari

Our 2017 Rally Schedule ended this past weekend with the Wild Bear Adventure Safari that was hosted by the Apollo Motorcycle Club in New Smyrna Beach.

The Rally provided for several levels of trail on Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday the Adventure Track covered 180 miles, largely through the very sandy Ocala National Forest. On Sunday, the options were single track trails around New Smyrna or a largely paved 100 mile scenic adventure ride.

My son and I took our 2016 KLR650 and 2016 DR650 for the rally.

The Apollo Motorcycle Club has their own facility. It's actually an enormous cow pasture...need to watch where you walk around in there.

Rider's Meeting Saturday Morning...

This is my friend Howard from South Florida. I originally met him at a DS rally and we seem to wind up at the same ones.

My son also has a 2017 Yamaha TW200 and was disappointed when he found some new buddies at the rally with their T-dubs.

Rocky Bull is the mascot for University of South Florida where my daughter goes to school. He's been joining me on my rallies this year.

This is my 2016 Suzuki DR650. I have this set up for and use it only for dual sport rallies. While I don't often dump it, when I do it's a hell of a lot lighter to pick up than the KLR.

This is our other friend Sam...Samantha. She is a dual sport rally veteran. She may not go very fast, but she makes it from point A to point B every rally.

It's the dry season and we only had one water crossing and a very few number of muddy spots like this one. My son aims for those things.

Ocala National Forest, like all of Florida is sandy and in some cases very deep. The rally offered bypasses for some of the more difficult sand areas.

Papa Joes for lunch. An iconic little burger joint right in the middle of ONF.

That was it for our 2017 Dual Sport Rally Schedule. After being out for most of 2016 with a knee injury this was pretty good year. Next stop...Devil's Creek where the AMA kicks off its 2018 Dual Sport Schedule on March 3, 2018,

Friday, November 24, 2017

Dirt Racks

Dirt Racks is offering it's front crash guards on sale for $109.00 (normally $129.00). Then they have a 10% discount code today (blackfriday) making the price $99. Shipping is $25 for a total $123.10.
I originally got my rear dirt racks guards on a holiday discount deal.

Since I need new guards to replace the current Tusks after we bent one on a low side back in March, I'm going to give these a try. They're smaller and little less coverage than the Tusks, but I think they'll work out down here in the sandbox and be lighter solution.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017


My Alpinestar Scout Adventure boots have taken a beating but I just can't seem to part with them. They just fit so well. I think I've got almost 100,000 miles on them, including a trip to Prudehoe Bay and back and two trips across the country and back. As I think about it maybe more.

The main issue they're having is keeping the soles on. First the backs went. Then the fronts went. I've found that JBWeld works in putting them back together. It's kind of unsightly though.

Some day I'm just going to have to bite the bullet and buy a new pair of boots.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Rally Calendar

Our Rally Calendar for 2017 is coming to a close with two events left. Both events are with the Apollo Motorcycle Club here in Florida.

This coming weekend is the Pumpkin Run. It's a night ride this Saturday night in New Smyrna Beach Florida, but has become more for quads and side by sides more than it is for motorcycles. The rally has been run for almost 50 years, but I've never attended. My son and I thought, what the heck, let's go see if there's some fun to be had. If not, it's only a two and a half hour drive over there.

Unfortunately, I don't think the KLR650 will be making it to the Pumpkin Run. The rally is entirely inside a closed off-road facility so the DR650 and my son's TW200 will most likely be making the trip for this one.

Coming in mid-December is the Wild Bear Safari. It's big bike friendly so more adventurish than dual sport so we'll be on the KLR650 and DR650. I'll be shocked if we see a bear. I know they're here, but I've never seen one in the 31 years I've been in Florida.

Next stop after December is Devil's Creek!!!

A long time...

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Discovery Fall Rally

My son and I just completed the Southern Discovery Fall Rally this past weekend with the KLR650 and DR650. This is our second trip this year up to Hohenwald, Tennessee (south of Nashville) where rally headquarters was the Fall Hallow Campgrounds.

We stayed in the primitive tent camping area and I set up a cot in the Toy Hauler. Fall Hollow has a nice little restaurant on site. They offered breakfast Saturday and Sunday and a dinner Friday and Saturday. If, for some reason, you need to roll into town, it's not far away.

Before we headed up I had Procycle send me the headlight guard ($75.95) as shown in the photo below. The track is mostly very rocky forest roads and it's a fast track...recipe for roost damage. I took a rock that totally took out the left front turn signal on the DR650.

In order to fit the headlight guard, we had to cut grooves in the top of the front fender. No big deal, but I'm sure there are many that probably wouldn't appreciate having to do that.

With the same order from Procycle, I also had them send me a JNS Rear Master Cylinder Guard (visible on the lower right). It's one thing to dump the KLR in the Florida sand. It's another thing to smash the highly-exposed master cylinder on the rocks. If you lose rear brakes you're prtty much done. btw...JNS makes nice stuff.

Later on in the photos, this guy tried a really steep slope on that no avail. Then his GF came over and told him he couldn't try again. :)

Casey Hampton heads up the Tennessee Dual Sport Association and led our group on Saturday.

This is a KTM Adventure 1190 trying to make this hill...not. No guts, no glory though.

Papa Kay Joe's in Centerville, Tennessee was a great place to stop for lunch.

This guy rode his Gen1 from Vermont for the rally.

Two bikes had flats at the exact same time, place. We donated our rear tube to the K-Toom and the Husquveran guy had his own.

Carnage. This Gen2 did a little "deeper" off-roading into the forest and busted up his expensive Zero Gravity Screen.

This is Rocky Bull, mascot of University of South Florida where my daughter goes to school. He's usually at home on my mountain bike, but I decided to bring him along for the ride.

Overall, dragging all our stuff up to Nashville took two days up and two days back. It's about 750 miles. It's a really good, well-planned, track though and worth it. I suggest considering one of the Tennessee Discovery Rallies in your rally plan for next year.


We really need to better stay on top of keeping the KLR650 bolts and fasteners tight. When we got back, we noticed that we lost the rear brake reservoir cover and heat plate. This picture was Saturday around noon, so it was gone fairly early in the three day event.

Fortunately the two parts are only a combined $15 at RockyMountainATV.