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Dual Sport vs Adventure Bikes--Should equal paces be expected?

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Something's bothering me.

So I recently went on a two day trip with some buddies--they are on 350EXC's and I'm on an F800 GSA.

From the get go, they took off, treated the posted Family Adventure as a "Race" and created this sense in me that I was too slow, needed more skill work, needed a lighter bike because I needed to go faster--but never once watched me ride, how I negotiated turns, how I picked lines and how I rode within my abilities. This was a complex route with 700 ft gorges that had the potential to punish one for an errant move.

I see adventure biking as a way to explore off the beaten path, enjoy the compromise that I get between dirt and road (ability to go long distances on the Tarmac, ability to see the sights on the roads less travelled)

I found myself irritated and ultimately didn't fully enjoy the trip. I found joy stopping to take pictures, helping others on the road, eating an apple and relishing the beautiful scenery and testing the limits of my ability and riding within my limits.

Doing 35-40 on straights, slow in switchback descents, pushing the speed on uphill lines, and thoroughly enjoying myself when I divorced myself from feeling the pressure of having to keep up with them.

Anyone have any advice on how to manage expectations for future events like this?

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Edited by Barakaiki
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Buddy, no offense, but... I don't really know how to put it, but...Those bikes, so different (EXCs and a GSA), I mean, you'd knew it was the recipe for a potential disaster (not the right word, mind you) from the start.

Basically, there were 2 guys on racing machines (not dual sports, In my opinion), and one (you) on a XL ADV (*winks at camera*) bike.

Too different, in everything: those two KTMs will always be MUCH faster than our big, bulky tanks.

 

I like to "ride ADV" for the same reasons you do: taking photos, exploring the unbeaten path, stopping just to let everything sink in. At this point, I have only two advices I can give you: 1-buy a cheap, more extreme dirtbike in order to keep up with your buddies or 2- change group of buddies...

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Buddy, no offense, but... I don't really know how to put it, but...Those bikes, so different (EXCs and a GSA), I mean, you'd knew it was the recipe for a potential disaster (not the right word, mind you) from the start.

Basically, there were 2 guys on racing machines (not dual sports, In my opinion), and one (you) on a XL ADV (*winks at camera*) bike.

Too different, in everything: those two KTMs will always be MUCH faster than our big, bulky tanks.

I like to "ride ADV" for the same reasons you do: taking photos, exploring the unbeaten path, stopping just to let everything sink in. At this point, I have only two advices I can give you: 1-buy a cheap, more extreme dirtbike in order to keep up with your buddies or 2- change group of buddies...

Yeah, or would you suggest (because we are buddies) just some sort of "managing expectations" conversation? I basically told them: hey, don't worry about me, ride your pace, don't wait up, and once I did that, I had fun. I think the answer is to maybe bring another buddy to the event that is on a similar bike, and then we all meet up for the bbq's and share stories. This trip because I was odd man out didn't make for a fun one for all of us.

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Yeah, or would you suggest (because we are buddies) just some sort of "managing expectations" conversation? I basically told them: hey, don't worry about me, ride your pace, don't wait up, and once I did that, I had fun. I think the answer is to maybe bring another buddy to the event that is on a similar bike, and then we all meet up for the bbq's and share stories. This trip because I was odd man out didn't make for a fun one for all of us.

Yup, that'd be another idea!

I was just joking with the "get another group of buddies". I mean, even I have my issues (consider that I'm the only one riding a XL ADV *winks at camera again* bike, they ride sportbikes).

Seriously, if you can manage to sort the trip in "two couples", that'd be a great solution.

Like "you guys go ahead at your pace, and we will catch up at the camp".

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I think Pierre has a point.  This is basically how I started riding my '11 GSA back in March of 2011 was with mostly dual sport guys from AOLrider (my nick name for that other forum).  95% of them are great guys but the bottom line is each of us "rides our own rides" and it may be difficult for a dual sport guy to understand the differences and properly empathize with people on bigger bikes.

 

I often found myself led into situations that were way above my level which resulted in quite a bit of damage to my bike and peril but it also taught me to become a better rider.

 

There were many times (not always) where I'd meet up with the group and wanted to take MY helmet off and cool off like they had done but once I got there I'd see them putting their helmets back on, leaving me not much time to rest.

 

I think the best course is to communicate up front the limitations of your bike and the type of riding you're capable of and looking to do.  You can hope they incorporate that but it's just one of those things you have to deal with when you ride with others.  Even when you have similar bikes, the same issues come out when you have people of varying abilities.  One group is pissed off it took so long waiting and the other is upset they were rushed and are exhausted and probably fell a few times trying to keep up.

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There is no way I'd enjoy an XL ADV pace on a 350/450/500EXC as a long time dirt bike guy. That would be like taking a Porsche GT3 to a twisty canyon and driving it like the GT car it's not. Boooooooring! Don't ride in a manner that you don't enjoy, so if these buds aren't into it, that's cool! You'll just need to find others that are. Or, pick up a 2nd bike so that you can mix it up. In the situation you described, I can see where it's frustrating for everyone.

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Great nickname for the "other" forum, Eric.

We've got a lot of that dual-sport clique around here too. Guys who trailer in their scarcely legal KTMs and WRs. These are the type of guys who think it's OK to let a new to the dirt rider go on the "advanced" course at the Rally last year and of course he post-holes himself. Oops, sorry 'bout that. Freakin' alcoholic poseur clowns more concerned about their post count than someone's safety and scarcely stop long enough to summon help. No wonder he got a bad impression of ADV riding from those guys.

Nonetheless I usually always preface my rides with the fact that I'm strictly a "D" grade rider anymore. That and the fact that I ride a Tiger 800 virtually assure continued solitude which suits me fine. Where's the "adventure" if there is no risk? I'm not foolhardy I just don't want to be forced to ride like a madman to keep up with a dissimilar bike and riding with someone on a dirt bike while on an ADV bike makes no sense.

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Something's bothering me.

So I recently went on a two day trip with some buddies--they are on 350EXC's and I'm on an F800 GSA.

From the get go, they took off, treated the posted Family Adventure as a "Race" and created this sense in me that I was too slow, needed more skill work, needed a lighter bike because I needed to go faster--but never once watched me ride, how I negotiated turns, how I picked lines and how I rode within my abilities. This was a complex route with 700 ft gorges that had the potential to punish one for an errant move.

I see adventure biking as a way to explore off the beaten path, enjoy the compromise that I get between dirt and road (ability to go long distances on the Tarmac, ability to see the sights on the roads less travelled)

I found myself irritated and ultimately didn't fully enjoy the trip. I found joy stopping to take pictures, helping others on the road, eating an apple and relishing the beautiful scenery and testing the limits of my ability and riding within my limits.

Doing 35-40 on straights, slow in switchback descents, pushing the speed on uphill lines, and thoroughly enjoying myself when I divorced myself from feeling the pressure of having to keep up with them.

Anyone have any advice on how to manage expectations for future events like this?

attachicon.gifIMG_9977.JPG

Ive had similar issues with "new" adv riding acquaintances who openingly break law after law on the pavement portions, including dangerous passing of cars on blind curves. I told them I cant ride with them. Aside from the law-breaking and danger, it gives us a bad image. To me, adventure riding is relaxed traveling. I have a stressful job. I want to relax and I want to be safe. I have no desire to ride past beautiful scenery at 110 mph worrying about a speeding ticket and crashing to keep up with riding partners.

Trying to find compatible riding partners is difficult. I'm riding alone more often now and take as many precautions as possible for safety including the satellite transponders, leaving route plan with friends, etc. 

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I like to ride a spirited ride whether alone or with others and when I feel like things are getting into my own personal unsafe zone I have no problem getting left behind. That's why there's things called "racetracks" that are set up for speed and the possible accidents that may occur there. I prefer to live for the next ride as they say. Maybe that's why I'm still able to ride at 55y.o. and not be hobbled up etc. AARP keeps sending me applications which I toss out. The membership I'm most interested in is being an active motorcyclist conversing on this forum :)

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It all goes down to WHAT, HOW, and WHO you ride with, basically.

I like to ride in the dirt because, as said manymany times, I want to Explore. I want to have an Adventure, I wanna go where I couldn't go back when I was a sportbike rider.
I DON'T wanna "race" anymore, I left my motocross years behind, and honestly, I'm ok with that. I raced MX since when I was 6 years old, I stopped at 18, and a lot of bad things happened. Crashes, stress, injuries, broken bones, near-death experiences... look, racing is awesome, but at some point, you gotta do a "conscience-check" and call it quits.

Nowadays, with those XL ADV bikes, I'm having the time of my life. I can go offroad (which I still love), I can do touring and see wonderful things, both on asphalt or off, I can ride with my beloved one, I can make videos of awesome places, take pictures of beautiful spots that I wouldn't be able to see if I was still a "asphalt-only" guy...

 

See the point?

 

Now, about ADV vs DS.

ADV for me is awesome, but we're still talking about bikes of at least 200 KGs. That implies that at some point, they gotta drop the ball, on certain trails/paths/singletracks. I'm ok with that! In the future I'm quite positive I'm gonna buy something more..."specialized", to ride up that particular path I had to drop, but I don't really care anymore about going up there in "berserk-mode", throttle wide open, shooting rocks and dust from my back wheel, laying down God's vengeance on a motorcycle, fire and brimstone, CATS AND DOGS LIVING TOGHETER, MASS HISTERYA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*cough*

Sorry.

I just wanna go up there, a sandwich and a bottle of water in my backpack, and chill and relax for a couple hours. Am I asking too much, since I work 12 hours a day? ;)

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^ Pierre ADV - Couldn't have said it any better sir! Exploring , relaxing , making friends/aquaintences , expanding experiences beyond the confines of four wheeled "cages" on our own terms. It's a great life we choose ! Ride on

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So, they took EXCs on the same trail as you could manage no problem on an F800?

Why?

I mean either;

you're one hell of a rider;

they're are terrible riders or they've misunderstood the point of an enduro racing bike completely..

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So, they took EXCs on the same trail as you could manage no problem on an F800?

Why?

I mean either;

you're one hell of a rider;

they're are terrible riders or they've misunderstood the point of an enduro racing bike completely..

 

At High Sierra we took the big bikes on a road that would wear out a EXC rider.  We fell down, we were tired, and I watched a dirt bike and turn around and not attempt a hill we went up.  I think the trail was not max of bikes ability, but maxed the ability to us the rider.  My only compliant is "i think" my bike cant handle the whoops at a speed I felt I needed to stay upright.   If I ever pay this thing off, suspension upgrade is in my future.  

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I'm not even waiting. Scheduled forks to go to Pro Motion suspension on Friday. Still so new that we're scratching our collective heads but we'll soon sort it. Probably have the shock re-sprung and such in another month or two and I'll do a write-up at that time for all the XCx guys who don't have the miles on yet to warrant the service.

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OK I'm not trying to compare trail ability to a dedicated dual sport, but I love it when I run into a 350 or 500 xcw/exc or whatever on a road that's not too rough to compete for speed on the my 990. I was in Crested Butte a few weeks ago on the road near emerald lake head back to town and 2 500's snuck up on me and dusted me out, well I wasn't having that!! I proceeded to put my head down and took them both out like they were sitting still! We had a good laugh at the end of the road after the beating!!  

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At High Sierra we took the big bikes on a road that would wear out a EXC rider. We fell down, we were tired, and I watched a dirt bike and turn around and not attempt a hill we went up. I think the trail was not max of bikes ability, but maxed the ability to us the rider. My only compliant is "i think" my bike cant handle the whoops at a speed I felt I needed to stay upright. If I ever pay this thing off, suspension upgrade is in my future.

If the OP is trotting along on a big bike, it makes no sense to take an enduro bike on the same trail.

Unloaded big bikes can go up some really gnarly stuff, I'd know..

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So, they took EXCs on the same trail as you could manage no problem on an F800?

Why?

I mean either;

you're one hell of a rider;

they're are terrible riders or they've misunderstood the point of an enduro racing bike completely..

Actually I lagged considerably behind them and felt on the first leg of the day that nagging anxiety that I was ruining the party. Told them to do their thing, I'll do my pace, and meet them at the BBQ later that night. Then had the time of my life, doing it the way I like--stopping and enjoying the quiet, surveying the landscape, thoroughly enjoying bike and terrain. Then got back, linked up, and suffered a deluge of criticism of man and machine.
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^ Pierre ADV - Couldn't have said it any better sir! Exploring , relaxing , making friends/aquaintences , expanding experiences beyond the confines of four wheeled "cages" on our own terms. It's a great life we choose ! Ride on

Thanks Pete!

I was talking to a friend of my fianceè, the other day. He knows nothing about ADV (or motorcycling in general, for that matter).

 

He said: "Yeah, but what's the point of risking getting caught up in rain, snow, cold, extreme hot? Aren't you gonna be extremely tired, when you reach your destination?"

Fair point, right?

I replied: "You see, when you travel in something other than a motorcycle, that vehicle is just a tool from getting from A to B. Car, train, plane, you name it. On a motorcycle (of any kind), the "getting-there" part is an experience in and on itself. On a motorcycle trip, you see, notice, smell and hear things that you wouldn't usually notice on another vehicle."

 

That's some really deep s**t, at 8am in the morning, y'all! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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...Hmmm...at the risk of being a nooB making comments here, I see there are many opinions, so I'll just post my thoughts.

What the heck, not much other to do in my day job ;)

 

I ride solo probably 80% of the time, whether on the road or off, and probably for the reason that I don't find the risk of compatibility (and responsibility for others) that appealing. My wife would say it's because I'm a hermit...

True, I'm not much of a social rider, I'll buy that. But considering the amount of time I get to ride, the 'hooking up' takes more time than it's worth.

Part of exploring the desert on a dualsport or big ADV at my own pace is why I make the effort.

Group rides of more than 2 or 3 equally skilled riders on similar bikes is more what I prefer, if at all.

The dangers of riding solo offroad can be large, but I do like to bring along a SPOT and/or a wingman just in case.

 

People have different ideas when it comes to social riding, attitudes, testosterone, youth vs the aged, experience, et al is all involved.

Skill and experience run the gamut.

This makes for, or lack there of, an awareness (responsibility) and a balance.

I'd rather be in the "B" group and ride quick tan in the "A" group and be chasing the rabbit.

So for myself, not meeting up with unknown riders and heading out to the nether regions is easier than doing it.

Too many variables involved. Frankly I don't know your skill level and preparedness and you don't know mine.

My advice is to size up your the skill level, the plan, and the route before committing.

 

Example: I tagged along on my GS with a friend on an XR1200R road ride up through the Sequoias, some 350 miles in the loop.

It was evident within the first two miles the two leaders had the the roads wired and were very fast, but the two guys at the back were very slow and cautious.

By the end of the day, sure enough one of the slow guys at the back crashed. I felt bad for the man, but it was kind of more he expected methinks.

 

Anyhow, it's all well and good to go out and ride with folks you meet on the interwebs, but it's a crap shoot.

I see it all the time on ADV threads, 8 guys in gals, all bikes from XT200's to R12GSA's having fun. Good for you folks, have fun.

But be careful out there.

 

As far as the KTM EXC's not being dualsports, well, that's a matter of definition.

I started back into offroad on a 950 Adventure and it took me several bike downsizes to realize I need a true tailbike to go where I wanted to go.

Experience and fitness is required to ride a mid or big XLADV offroad capably.

 

I have a GS designated as my road bike.

My dualsport is a KTM 450EXC, and it is invaluable for improving riding skills.

The day that I might ride that big GS off the tarmac, I'll be a better rider thanks to it...

 

...early days...

go-solo.jpg

 

...smarter days...

IMG_5490-X3.jpg

Edited by Rapid Dog
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