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Go BIG or go home!

Entries in this blog

 

BMW's GS LC Fork Stanchion Issues Linger

I've said this previously but more recently even, BMW has been having quite a lot of social media blowback over their stanchion problems.  I first noticed this in November of last year and posted on Instagram these three images, one of which I took myself and another from the same event I was at: Now we have reports of injuries related to apparent failures of these fork stanchions: Woody Witte (of Woody's Wheel Works) in his caption to this story above he sha

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Credibility

I try to be nice.  But I still have to be true to who I am.  I’m a market researcher by trade and we’re paid for our objectivity, accountability and transparency.  I’m paid to tell the truth whether or not that’s convenient to someone’s marketing objectives. That may be in a way how I’ve shaped XLADV.  I want this community to be real.  I really do want it to be positive though as well.  I embrace the vendor community (some say too much?) but I also have to stay true to the objectivity and

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

XLADV: Adventure Motorcycle Media Playa!

I wanted to share with our members a bit of a progress report on how far we've come in just two years.  It was our objective to create an online community that was all about big adventure bikes that had a user experience unique to anything else out there and I'm extremely proud that many of you have found that to be the case and have chosen to make your ADV home here with us.  Facebook is fun but it's still a mile wide and an inch deep and isn't the best place to ensure your adventures persist b

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Slow down!

Tyler of Everide just posted a new video (see below) with some really epic scenery and riding in Maui with some perhaps more philosophical than literal discussion on "slowing down." I thought there was a lot more meat to that topic, especially for us big bike riders. Too often I see riders who ride way too fast; too fast for the conditions; too fast for their ability. I'm guilty of that sometimes myself. Speed oftentimes masks bad riding which is something I was taught by Jimmy Lewis. If y

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Midlife Crisis?

I saw this article featuring Bill Dragoo this morning and it reminded me of how offensive I find this kind of labeling that what we do with big adventure bikes is some kind of “midlife crisis.” This is a midlife crisis I was just 43 at the time, hardly mid-life, when my ex wife first saw the 2011 BMW GS Adventure I’d bought a few months earlier. “Midlife crisis!” she said, nodding her head, in a way intended to cut deep. It reminded me of this girl in the fourth grade, Susie We

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

So Were Simon Pavey and His Son Lel Racing Dakar Separately Or Together? Yes!

"That's an awesome question," answered Simon Pavey this past weekend at AltRider's Taste of Dakar where he was the signature guest.   I had posed this question last year and took a lot of heat for it. Honestly, I feel the jerk in retrospect for asking it too, but Simon was a good sport and shed some never-before-heard insight into this matter in ways that made not simple good sense but in a quite endearing way that, given the fact I have my own son of 14 years I hope to ride with one day to

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

What Makes a Grown Man Cry?

It was one of those buddy road trips to the KTM Rally in Crested Butte, CO with TG Woody Witte (Woody’s Wheel Works) recently when I found myself quite stirred to emotion when trying to convey what it is I like so much about adventure riding. Woody’s what we call a “kindred spirit” so he knew right away where I was coming from.   But before I was so stirred, I gave an intro I guess from my head which was what I always say… there are three things I like best about adventure riding. The first

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Going from an '11 BMW GSA to an '11 KTM 990 Adventure

Since we've started this project bike, the most frequent question I've been getting is "so how do you like the 990 vs the GSA?"   I can tell you it's been a lot of fun! I really like what is obviously better off-road handling and the highway comfort is not as bad as I expected (my Seat Concepts seat sure helps!). While I love my GSA too, I can't say that I'm missing it that much yet.   There are a few interesting surprises though that I didn't expect. For example, I thought the 990 was l

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Rider Selection: Don't Be "That Guy"

I'm getting ready to do the IDBDR later this week. One guy I've ridden with before and one I haven't. They guy I haven't ridden with before has ridden with other guys I have ridden with and he seems like a great guy so I'm not sweating it. But this got me thinking how important rider selection can be, especially for a big trip like this.   Think about it, you invest lots of money in new gear, farkles, etc..., not to mention time off work and away from family/loved ones. The last thing you ne

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

How High Do My Handlebars Need to Be?

Q: How high do my handlebars need to be? A: Half your height But how do I measure that? I rode with Alan recently and noticed his body position seemed a bit stooped and he wasn’t able to control his 1190 R as well as he might have been had he that extra few inches of bar height. I have been riding for roughly 4 years and even with 2” risers (Rox), Jimmy Lewis said I could use another inch of height. Now I’ve also lowered my pegs by about 20 mm, so I was looking for a way

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

What I Hate About Facebook!

What do I hate about Facebook? I’ll tell you what I hate about Facebook! I hate the vague-bookers, braggers, candy crush gamers, etc… That’s not really what I’m going to blog here about though. I’d rather focus on where Facebook falls short for us big bike adventure riders. The biggest gripe I have is probably how temporary, fleeting and unorganized everything is. You see a really good set of photos from an event or special trip and then a few days later, they’re essentially gone. An

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

"That's What's Fun About Riding ADV Bikes Off-Road is the DANGER!"

No, dumbass. It’s not that dangerous and please don’t ask to ride with me! Is it really though? I don’t think it is (or has to be). Obviously we have accepted the risk that goes along with riding a motorcycle, but I have to only look at my friends who ride mountain bikes, road bikes, play softball, etc… and notice all their injuries. It makes what we do look safe, really. I was injured myself once (right Achilles tendon) and have seen friends get hurt but it’s really not that common. Dange

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

So Is the New BMW GSA Better Off-Road Than the Old One?

Is the new liquid cooled GS Adventure better off road than the older oil-cooled one? Yes, it is! No, it’s not! Who is right? I can’t seem to find a decent answer. I could just buy a new one and judge for myself, but that day hasn’t come yet. On road, I think there’s no doubt the new bike is an entire new generation of all around road performance. It’s clear they mean to compete more with the street touring segment. For me, the answer is that it may be a better

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Big Bike Riders Are Better

Aren’t we though? I’m only kidding! It’s surely an incendiary thing to say but I do think there are some key differences in how the two are ridden that are worth mentioning. I do think small bikes are easier to ride off road than big bikes, but I’d never say that they are a breeze or that big bike riders are somehow “better.” Small bikes still require a lot of skill (skill I definitely am not in possession of) to ride well. Let’s face it, big bikes are less forgiving, heavier, take longer to

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Has Adventure Riding Become the New "Gluten-Free?"

Has adventure riding become the new gluten-free? Everything in the grocery store now seems to carry a label “gluten-free!” I bought bacon the other day and saw it on the front. It’s BACON! Of course it doesn’t contain any gluten! Likewise it seems with “adventure.” Everything seems to be “ADV” this or that. Even BMW’s new S 1000 XR comes with the “adventure” moniker even though it’s probably the last bike I’d ever use for what I define as adventure riding. Look at me, I’m going adventure

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

What I LOVE about BMW (Motorrad)

As if anyone cares. The "What I HATE about BMW" is the entry that got so many views and generated so much discussion on the Interwebs. That last screed was more about BMW's GS brand becoming more "gS" (less dirt, more street), but I should note that there are a few things that are known to make the new GS/A 1200 LC bikes better in the dirt: longer swing arm that allows for more efficient rear suspension, a higher snorkel for those deep water crossing and the ability to retain front abs whi

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Size Matters

Size matters. It does! (snicker) For adventure bikes, at least The smaller bikes are more fun and forgiving off-road but then they compromise considerably with cargo carrying capacity, fuel range, highway comfort, service intervals, etc… Bigger bikes can surely carry more stuff (even a pillion) and cruise more comfortably and further on the highway, but it takes a bit more skill than most have to confidently handle them in the more difficult terrain with all that weight. Leave you gear at

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

What I Hate About BMW

There are many things I love about BMW Motorrad that I will cover in a separate entry, but for now I'd like to just talk about what I HATE! Well, hate is a pretty strong word. Dislike. Disappointed. Let-down. Maybe that's more appropriate. Maybe it's mostly a function of who I am and what my expectations are from that particular brand. I'm more of the "adventure enduro" rider than the guy who might take his GS/GSA on some very nice graded dirt road for a mile or two in a national park once

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

So Why Not a Big Bike?

So Why Not a Big Bike? It really is quite amusing to find discussions here and there across the Interwebs when it comes to "what bike should I buy?" You hear some good advice like questions as to what the rider wants to do, what their riding background is, etc.... You also hear some really strong opinions, declarations really, about the bike the rider is supposed or not supposed to buy. A more recent example is when I made a big deal about Noah Horak's statement of what a "true adventure act

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Time for a modified leap frog?

We've all been there, right? You're on a group ride and it gets separated. Someone forgot to "post up," or wait at the turn for the rider behind. This has happened so many times now, I can't even count. It happened day 1 at our High Sierras event and despite the pre-ride lecture and a threat that any violators will get a kick to the nuts, it happened three more times the next day! It happened again at Death Valley a month or so ago and the rider left at the turn wasn't too happy (right, Jo

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

 

Welcome to XLADV!

It sure is nice to have a place to call our own, isn't it? First, I'd like to thank each and every new member of this site for your participation. Communities like this only thrive when people such as yourselves, all rock stars in the world of big bike adventure, choose to play a part. This is not "Eric's site." It's YOUR site. YOU are what is going to make XLADV an interesting place to be. Next, I'd like to thank the leadership team from Thumpertalk for believing in this concept and tak

Eric Hall

Eric Hall

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