5 Adventure Riding Tips from Jimmy Lewis

KLiM just released this great how-to video with some tips from Jimmy Lewis



My favorite is #5: Respect the bike! ;)

I took jimmy Lewis's one day training class at altrider's conserve the ride. Made a world of difference the next day out riding.

I've been to his class twice. The first time was after only having ridden for about 6 months. I left the class not sure what I'd learned but then it was immediately apparent in how rapidly my riding progressed. But like it was with my golf game, I realized I wasn't likely to get any better unless I went back for more lessons. The second time I went what I noticed most was how many bad habits I got rid of, or what I had to un-learn. The best farkle you can buy for your bike is training.

.... The best farkle you can buy for your bike is training.

If you only knew how many motocross racers I've told that to. Training 1st, provided they already setup the bike and suspension.

I did the Altrider/Lewis class at the Taste of Dakar in '14 in Parump Nevada. Jimmy and I were the only 950's in a sea of BMW GS's.

I had went thinking Dakar + Lewis = extreme fun. I didn't realise the course was aimed a the new off-road rider. During the acceleration/braking exercise, I got a little overzealous and he told me to not be so aggressive. His tips and techniques are good and I recommend it to those new to big bikes.

I think that class (and all his others) aren't necessarily geared to the new off road rider; they just take whoever shows up.  I said before that if I went back I'd want something "more advanced" and his response was pretty classic.  He said something like "oh well then if you're advanced you can do this, this and this?"  I was like well... uh...um...    He understood what I meant and I found on my second go around that they really do a great job of tailoring the instruction to the individual.  Many of the drills that I found easy were quickly altered to make them much more difficult.  I was able to fix a lot of my own bad habits too because they were constantly being pointed out and re-directed.  But I do get what you're saying; you want instruction to meet your needs and not have to pay to be in with a bunch of noobs.


Was that the year he did that epic sunset full standing wheelie on the dry lake bed?  Or was it the mud-fest?

I don't mind noobs, we were all noobs at one time. It's just when held in conjunction with the word Dakar, I expected something different.

It was the mudfest. I had stopped to help a fallen rider then just as I got back up to speed, my front wheel locked up from mud in the fender pitching me on the ground.

I was riding the the brake on in a rut to let the rut guide me. Jimmy decided to try Ann force it but it was ripping my fender off along with the brake line so we had to go back to my method. When I got off the lake, his was siting there with the fender torn off.

I rode there from Ohio so I didn't want to tear my bike up. Sadly I removed my high fender under the assumption desert, dry, no mud...

Bad mistake! It snowed that night. Everyone was excited for the snow, me? NO! I left Ohio to avoid the snow!! I ride in it enough!

Yeah that was certainly an adventure.  I pre-rode the intermediate course on that Friday and we got stuck in some super nasty stuff and then a flash-flood.  I got back to camp and my tent had blown down and was a puddle of water.  Luckily everything inside stayed dry though.


I rode the expert loop with a group of 690's, 2 were factory rally bikes, the others were kitted 690 rallies. There was one I struggled to stay with in the rough, he goes by Cyborg on Advrider. I ended beating my front wheel half to death but a lead hammer fixed it good enough to ride home.




What I didn't know was I may have pinched the tube. In the morning I pumped my tires from 20 to 36 for touring duty. Somewhere on the west side of Death Valley I just about washed out the front under braking due to a front flat.

If you were at the riders meeting, I was the one across the drive from the truck where they had it, trying frantically to put on a new rear tire that Jimmy had ready for me to do the ride and my trip home.

My tent stayed put only because I put 4 large rocks inside the corners and my saddle bags.

I thought about going back again but if I do, I'm leaving from further south, Ohio in February sucks!!!

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