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MacDuncan

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About MacDuncan

  • Rank
    Impressive Poster
  • Birthday 11/26/57

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    El Cajon
  • Interests
    Adventure and Enduro motorcycling, tour and rock garden kayaking, hiking, mtn. and road bicycling, backpacking...
  1. Hey Wildwood, that is GREAT! Well done. Nice report. Sure would have liked camping near you on that trip. Having your gal on a quad seems like a good idea (besides that fact that those quads can easily carry picnics and cold ones - smiles) . That area is so nice! cheers.
  2. Mikey, use this as a generic starter http://www.paddypallin.com.au/blog/all-about-waterproof-fabrics/ (I didn't read it all, but saw that Helly product is in it) Whether that helps or not, the balance between waterproofness and breathability is the key. Many brands make their own waterproof material, but most will not be as efficient as goretex. For me, the less expensive brands that don't breath just aren't worth the discomfort, especially in a dual sport application when more energy (muscle usage- and heating up) takes place. As Trophy and Zubb implied correctly, many times the garment is praised simply for the wind-cutting factors as weather approaches, or nightfall, or for early morning starts, and a light packable jacket to throw over all gear for greatly increased warmth is a blessing. With rain added, or even super foggy rides, I would recommend internet searching at those many discount sports wear sites and try to find a super sale on a goretex jacket (even if it is a backpacking or bicycling site because those applications still require durability and high breathability. If you are just sitting and riding in rain, maybe breathability isn't as important to you, but my guess is that you like to dance with your bike and that will generate energy (and perspiration that needs to be released) under a jacket. Maybe look for a pit zip feature as well. Good luck.
  3. In for an x-large
  4. Trophy, I'm interested. I'll pm.
  5. Great post and any overview info you post along these lines will be fun to read. Sitting through a cycle of a traffic light is a recipe for grumpy, especially on a hot day with ATGATT. Thanks. I have a couple of lights that do not do as I wish when I commute to work on my moto a couple times a week. I am embarrassed to say that I occasionally decide that the light is non-operational a little too quickly at times. In particular, one light requires that I MUST approach the light in the left fourth of the lane as I approach the limit line or simply.... No go. I almost always I remember this... but on a drowsy morning, I will roll up in the center, and then curse my lack of awareness that I missed the "clicker". In the diagrams in the prior links, it does appear that all sensors are centered in lanes, so don't know why this one is different. Also, either logic or pretend logic, I sometimes rev my engine to increase electric current, magnetism, or Karma, or something........... haha, when I pass over a sensor, maybe because 30 years ago it seemed to work. Is that just silly? I tried to translate the link info "The ferromagnetic effect increases loop inductance. However, vehicle-induced eddy currents decrease loop inductance even more. Therefore, net effect is decreased loop inductance when a vehicle passes through the detection zone of an inductive loop". but..... Thanks again.
  6. A Great day at the Escondido shop, it truly is an excellent workshop to do all that needs to be done to a bike!! I really appreciated the expertise and depth of knowledge by those who were helping in the workshop. The Host helped me when I slowed and wondered, and when DSM8 drifted off to help others, the master Kug guided me to the next step, along with DanRider. Great to see a few of the SDAR upper management supporting the troops as well. Thanks fellas. Nice to see those who I have met before and great to meet some new riders as well. Cheers. MacDuncan
  7. Day 3. The day's route would be some of the BDR until about Meredith, then a left towards Basalt and back to Snowmass to end the loop. I have ridden the BDR route from Meredith to Sylvan Lake before and there is a section that says "unpassable" if wet. Like all of you, I would assume it is a warning to others...... but it can be wicked slippery clay goo that might challenge some good riders. A newbie on a fully loaded GS Adventure bike would not have a pleasant time if very wet. At moments, it would feel impassable. Additionally, I once saw in a video that the sand near Buena Vista was challenging, but frankly, I didn't think of that until I had already passed it and chuckled about how that could be challenging.... but then again, it had rained so it was a bit compacted and of course..... I was on a rather unusual Adventure bike for that stuff.... In fact, that is why it was so much fun! A person riding a sporty Dual sport bike who rides winters in Borrego will not notice the sand. There are some benefits of stopping in a town instead of the wilderness besides just picnic tables, and in this case, showers. The local restaurants can be a treat. This was goooood on a cool brisk morning to start my day! Upon exiting Buena Vista, I headed north and saw these cool tunnels. Although they are a couple hundred yards past the BDR turn off, I wanted to ride through them anyway - It was fun , then a U-turn, and ride through them again to get back on route. The morning was beautiful, the track was tacky, the undulating road was a treat..... There might be a bunch of Razers on this road in the afternoon, but at this time in the morning it was all mine and spectacular! I was heading mostly east, even though Leadville was North.... so I was to be directed to discover a bunch of backcountry roads on the Backcountry Discovery route...... go figure - haha I occasionally get asked what are my favorite moments on a solo loop like this..... and although there are many great answers that I can describe that feed my soul, one of the most valuable is the feeling of rounding a bend and seeing the road just ahead that I am willing to follow no matter where it will lead me. That happens a bunch on a BDR..... and when you add the changing environmental surroundings, the textures of the road, and the riding style and gears to be used..... it becomes quite magical. The next couple of pics were taken on the way to Leadville are examples of this: There is another scenario where I find myself very pleased that most of you would likely understand quite well.... When wandering through the trees at around 30 mph, essentially dancing with the machine... and then you pop out on a wide groomed dirt road that has good visibility in front and on the sides (so that antelope, cattle, deer, etc... will less likely hop out in front of you), and you turn that throttle to full, stand up, and then.... in such a magical way.... the bike and rider seemingly floats as if riding on air....... Wow ! ! ! Hard to beat that feeling! Sure... the river crossings are nice too And there is always the excitement you get when you don't know if the mud puddle is 8 inches deep or 2 -3 feet deep. My challenge at that time in the loop is that I no longer had a knobby. I had burned them off pretending to be a road rider and although the thought was to ride the side of the puddle where it might be more shallow, the tire would immediately slip down to the lowest point before exiting... crossing it up like that was a bit un-nerving, so I had to go through the center and hope it wasn't more than a couple feet deep. The flat section puddles were kind enough to let me raise my feet as I cruised through the center... But that reminds me of a section that was about a mile long, pretty steep downhill, and had obviously had the most rain the night before.... it was in the trees (embankment up on the right, drop-off on the left, so no alternative routes) and was very very very slimy slippery. I basically ski - ed down the route and was dab ready all the way through (not sure my stabilizing tail bag helped here - haha). No front brake and a slick for a rear made the ride fun, although I am glad nobody captured my riding style on film down that section. Funny that in the hundreds of miles of riding, I only saw 3 other riders. They were all on GS 800's, fully loaded, looked like a BMW commercial, all about 20 feet from each other. I saw them about 10 miles before they would have to go up that section..... I wanted to watch, but I likely couldn't have gone up it either with my slick rear tire. Next was Turquoise lake near Leadville, then Hagerman pass: Some think it is too rocky, but it is only a little bit rocky at the top. The road up to the pass, with the lake over your rear shoulder is wonderful : I like that section, it is beautiful, but don't like the power lines running through it at the Pass. A couple of quite fast, few mile long switchbacks, through the tress, on the west side, are really nice. I turned off the BDR just before Meredith, had a treat at the newly opened store, then rode around Ruedi Reservoir: (Meredith is at the east tip of the reservoir in the background) Then a rain ride to Basalt in the rain. Then North on hiway 82 to Woody's Tavern where I treated myself to a burger and a beer. After a nice chat with some locals, I had a calm ride back to Snowmass to complete the loop. 650 FANTASTIC miles of pure bliss! It was a great loop! Next year, maybe I will coax a few of you to ride along A good wander about - Cheers.
  8. What a great thread. oil change, air clean, sprocket and chain evaluation. Tire changer? (besides my hands and 3 bars) and balancer? weights (buyable in the area?) . Or just watch others with a brew in my hand. All super good. Thanks.
  9. Day 2 was a good start as the rain stopped right when I was about to slip out of the tent. Then hot coffee, breakfast, and then the re-pack after shaking as much water off of all pieces and parts. All loaded up and ready to go, except very low on gas - I must of used too much throttle on the rim canyon road pretending to be in a race - haha. Well, I carried the MSR (with extra premium gas) canister with me so I knew I had about 8-9 miles of extra gas beyond the reserve. Wagons ho...... I stopped and asked a few folks where the nearest gas could be found and the consistent answer made me realize that even with the extra fuel bottle I was going to need to find gas ASAP. I have targeted lakes before in hopes of finding boats with gas, but in this scenario there was a marina near by, so with fingers crossed, I headed that way. They were nice at the marina. I walked out on the dock and they let me borrow a can and and pay 4.50 a gallon for 85 octane without Ethanol. I recalled that at one station a few fill-ups ago, I saw a sign that said 91 octane with 20% ethanol. I realized that I should learn what octanes and ethanol percentages are good, bad, and really bad for my bike before my next adventure. In town, I just pull up and grab 91, but in the near future there may be decisions to make. I then asked where I might find the quickest route to Lake City and was directed to the "Blue Mesa Cutoff". It was a nice dirt road, nobody on it except one fella who was on a quad who was only wearing rubber boots, shorts, and an unbuttoned pendelton shirt - It made me feel a little overdressed as we rode along side each other for awhile. I went to Lake City, grabbed a quick Calzone, and began the BDR. It was a nice route after climbing the pavement to Slumgullion pass. There are times that the pavement can offer a nice moment, but mostly it is best to be on dirt! The view from the pass was nice at it looked across to the west towards the BDR that is west of Lake City, which of course is where all the fantastic passes are, in succession. Rain coat tossed back on, it was starting to rain again, glad it was easy to access in my stabilizer tail bag - haha From there the BDR was nice as it wandered on dirt roads that allowed for full throttle. Along some roads, it was a standing pleasant 70 mph. Then some small detours through forests and scrub oak prairies at a more leisurely pace . It was so very nice!! A fun afternoon of riding to say the least! A little tricky finding the alternate route due to Cottonwood pass being closed, but very very beautiful. I had to skip a section and go to Seargents town to find gas. From there, a grind in the rain over paved Monarch pass (would have rather ridden Old Monarch Pass in the dirt). Down into Salida, and then a nice zip zam zoom from Salida as I head over towards Buena Vista over "Aspen Ridge". Don't know why really, maybe due to enjoying riding too much, but again I lagged on finding a nice camp site before it was dark and once again raining. Hell, maybe a wander through Buena Vista and find another campground mostly because I enjoyed the picnic table for all my gear and for cooking and eating. Hell, I forgot again to fill the beer canister.... It sure will be embarrassing to ride the whole ride without filling it to enjoy at night! I found a nice RV park with tent sites... AND a hot shower was included in the price. No decision here. I slide into a tent site, set up the tent and sleeping gear in a spitting drizzle, had a bite to eat, and then took a long hot shower and put on warm cozy DRY clothes - nice. A quick walk in the rain to my tent, and then slept like a log (something about rain on the tent makes me sleep soundly!) No rain as I crawled out of the tent in the morning was once again a treat. But REALLY?? do I need all that stuff? Will all that stuff really fit back on my bike??? In three bags and a hydration pack? ....yep - a Giant loop saddle bag, with sleeping bag on left, then stove in upper left with water pump filter, then clothes top right, and tools bottom right. Then a black dry bag on the back rack that holds a tent, chair, sleeping pad, coffee cup and nalgene bottle. The Stabilizer tail bag (ok, really a wolfman tankbag, but it sure straps to the rack in back and the metal loop on the saddle bag perfectly, thanks BP619) with toiletries, misc items, some electronics, etc... and then, in my hydration backpack, a Delorme, cell phone, Rugged Radio, and a few other personal items like sunscreen hand sanitizer, etc.... Enjoyed some hot morning coffee, then packed it all up..... as Day 3 was about to begin.
  10. Thanks Trophy, lots to do near Ouray. You will have lots of fun. The BDR from Telluride to Lake City is quite rewarding, and you can throw in Engineer pass as well. Well.... After I got down Taylor Pass, I was happy. I emptied the water out my boots, took off the rain gear as it was nice once off the mountain, slapped my socks against some hot dry rocks for a few minutes, and enjoyed the victory. (note to self, learn how to dry the inside of boots the quickest way possible). (other note to self, why carry a beer canister with no beer in it - ) From that intersection, the road was wide and smooth, which was a pleasant treat, as I could stand and ride at about 55 mph comfortably as I rode to, and around, Taylor reservoir. A quick pic as I stopped and watched a couple fellas fly fish just below the road where the river entered the lake, and then rolled along. From there I rode to Crested Butte with a quite large thunder storm on my heels. I out ran it for awhile as I entered Crested Butte and decided to have some pizza for lunch before I rode over Schofield Pass and down to Marble on my way towards the north rim of Black Canyon of Gunnison. Pizza in the forefront, Bike in the background I headed up to Schofield Pass with a full belly, but dang, the Pass was closed. I had asked a few folks earlier, and they said it was open. I looked for the loophole.... closed to tourists? closed to 4 wheel rigs? closed to dalmations? still ok for dual sport bikes?........... But no, only hikers. The evil eyes were watching me close in case I thought there was a way by the clearly marked "ROAD CLOSED" barriers. Oh well, turn around, it was a pretty valley: As I backtracked into Crested Butte, the storm I had earlier out run had just arrived. It started pouring rain as I worked my way over to Keblar Pass towards Peonia. It was mostly dirt, I mean mud, but it was a pretty route through lots of trees. I had to dodge quite a few sheep, but it was nice that every single vehicle I approached pulled slowly to the right to give me lots of room to buzz by. I wanted to see Peonia, but don't need to again. I wandered back to Hotchkiss to get gas, and then proceeded towards Crawford. I was actually quite shocked by the absence of any traffic. I had gone about 30 miles towards the north rim of the Black Canyon, and hadn't passed anyone.... No vehicles. I had chosen this route because I had merged a "best motorcycle roads" Butler map with my Butler BDR map and really wanted to ride along the edge. I knew it would burn off the knobs on my already worn tires, but I planned on finishing off the tire by the end of the ride. The road was truly spectacular!!!! It was smooth windy, clean, fast and in the entire 11 miles, no other vehicle was seen. It was dusk, and it was a treat. The deer hanging out along the roadside made me focus a bit more on occasion, but I treated myself by going as fast as I could. Yahoo. I suggest you all ride that road sometime soon . My dual sport bike felt like a sport bike! As I completed the road from Heaven, and arrived at the Lake, it was getting dark, so I needed to find a spot to sleep. I headed out towards a remote part of the lake to pirate camp, but came upon a beautiful Campground (ponderosa?) that had about 30 campsites, but only one van parked in one of the distant loops. I decided to sleep there, which was an easy choice because it was starting to rain. A little din din in the dark, light sprinkles, and about 10 pairs of deer eyes looking at me from about 40 yards away. Great dinner, Great day 1, and then hit the sack. Great stove CID! Thanks. Day 2 soon.
  11. Well, I had a couple of outings scheduled up in the Colorado Rockies and also had a few days in between them..... (that makes 3 outings ).... so I wondered what I should do between an Aspen soccer team 35 year reunion and a few rounds of golf in Aspen and Snowmass, and later a few days of wee-strom 2-up cruising and hiking out near Colorado Springs and down to Santa Fe. So I decided to load up a truly wonderful adventure bike and wander around. I initially thought I would do a couple/few loops with a return to one location each time, but then decided to simulate something more closely to the distance of the CO BDR by creating a single loop and making half of the loop be the sections of BDR that I couldn't do last year because they were closed due to fires. This year, a section would be closed due to the asphalt paving of Cottonwood pass, but that would be ok as I do think that the alternate route was quite rewarding. This is the loop I created and completed: The ride was 649.3 miles (3 days, 2 nights - & a fair amount of very wet roads and some rain) Essentially, from the very bottom to the almost very top (you can see the BDR heading north out of Meredith), on the right, or east, side.... is the BDR. The left side was homemade from areas I have wanted to do for years. There is a little family store that just re-opened in Meredith, with nice folks who just retired from the Air Force, so stop by for a cold one if you go that way (only about a one mile detour). I posted the info about the store on ADV rider too. Folks are already stopping by - Nice Prep: I started by putting everything on my garage floor that I might normally load up on my Wee-strom when I camp and then see how it would pack onto the 07 KTM 525. Hmmmm, I soon realized that when I camp from my V-strom, it was much like "car-camping", and I would need to immediately make some decisions and sacrifices. My guess was that I would only be able to carry about 60% of what I normally pack on my V-strom. The challenge would be that I would be riding alone, so must haves were tools and emergency electronic devices, especially since I would be in significantly more remote areas on a 525 (because I could choose much rougher roads) than on a V-strom that doesn't wander too far from civilization if the road gets too rocky (hence, not much, or any, through traffic). One extra nice feature was that I asked BP619 if I could return the tank bag I bought from him and exchange it for a tail bag (maybe - haha) No problem, he might have said. The tail bag I got worked incredibly well because it would pull my duffel bag (tent/chair/sleeping pad) forward against the GL Saddle bags to relieve the weight of downward force on my Nomadic rack. Additionally, BP said (maybe) that it works perfectly like an jet fighter plane tail vertical stabilizer and would increase stabilization at high speeds!! I like that idea! Certainly, it was great having quick and immediate access to maps, toiletries, rain gear, etc... right behind me and it didn't interfere with my hydration pack and it didn't make the cockpit seem too tight. All systems go (except maybe that I started the ride on half worn tires)! I took off and it was like riding on air. So dang nice, cool, green, rivers alongside.... lots of fun 525 power.... full throttle acceleration coming out of almost every turn ..... as I headed to Pearl Pass and Taylor Pass (doesn't get much better, except I was still on asphalt). I had heard that the Pearl Pass was still snowed in, but Taylor pass was open to go by the lake and then 20 more miles to the east to Taylor reservoir..... but that the east side of the pass is for advanced riders only. Hmmm, well, I am an older newbie, learning all the time, so how does one get better, try harder stuff As the softball size rocks for hundreds of yards turned into volleyball rocks and then into 1-2 foot consistent drop-offs from rock to rock.... I was doing great, and was super glad that I was going down and not up with a packed bike ( I would not have been able to go up that, I know!) A little dab here and there, at about 3-5 miles per hour. Nice, but then the ravine tightened severely, to the point that I do not think I could have gone back..... hmmmm, was the part I just rode.... and was so proud of myself...with big smiles.... not been the hard part yet???? Nope, It was harder around the next corner..... As the river alongside merged with the road, I knew I had to get my game on. 1-2 foot deep water covering volleyball size rocks covered with slime was the only way down. So.... I dove in (nope, not literally - haha) stayed upright, but was sweating like crazy doing so. My boots were filled with water and my clothes were soaked from the work effort inside, not from the rain falling outside. I was glad I had used the stabilizing tail bag! - smiles. Well, that was in the first couple hours...... I will share a bit more later, I need to go wash the bike, maybe change the oil and put on a couple new tires..... or do that later and drink a beer for now. haha. Cheers.
  12. Thanks DSM8, I believe you are right! Just home from a Colorado great loop and I almost ran out of gas a few times. It was a drag worrying about it out on the BDR and other remote passes. One time I had to buy gas from the Blue Mesa Reservoir marina (85 - no ethanol). I will keep looking for a larger tank for long adventure rides. If you run across one, new or used, or know which one fits the 07 525 easiest (brand and size/model number), please send the info my way. Thanks. Cheers.
  13. Thanks Weirdrider, but don't want to rush the fixing and installation of a new tank just now, appreciated though. Those new tanks cost so dang much. thanks Bagstr, good layout (the orange/red bag looks like one of my crampon carry pouches) breathes well. Wonder if anyone local makes compression bags that squeeze to long slender shape?? My coyote bag is gray also, it came with a dry bags, but I will likely use more dry bags to compartmentalize gear. Bp, I often think about the downsizing, don't dig the bulk, but frankly, cooking in the evening is a treat, and the morning hot coffee, toast, oatmeal.... at the campspot, is always golden, it is part of the ride for me, so just gotta have it. cheers.
  14. Thanks Bp, I bought a nomadic rack down in Santee, it fits well, I always wanted one of those big gas tanks, but didn't get one yet. I could use a couple msr fuel canisters, always have those. They are good for about 8-9 miles each. If I mount the rotopak 90 degrees off to actually increase width, maybe the top duffel placed across the back with light stuff in it would have more lateral support - hmmm!?. Bad news when a wide bag droops over to get hit by exhaust - grrr. Bagstr, that sure looks like a small area for your butt in front of that red bag . Is there also a small bag under the blue bag? Maybe tools/tubes? Thanks for suggestion about sleeping bag last, makes good sense to put small stuff down in deep first as it looks like quite a deep hole down each side leg to get lost in - smiles. Looks like a full unpack and repack for overnights to get comfy attire, stove, food, etc.... Just now in the garage I stuffed my sleeping bag in the coyote to puff up the new coyote bag, admittedly not in compression sack, but it virtually filled it - dang, so was thinking about putting the sleeping bag and other light weight items in bedroll out of coyote. I've got a bunch of dry bags to choose from. This could help to address Bp's idea about not having too much weight on back subframe. All of my compression bags make things short and fat, seemingly more difficult to pack! Funny, but the tank bag I bought from Bp doesn't fit all that well and I dislike being all crowded in on a long ride, especially if the bottom of my hydration pak hits the top of the Coyote.... or duffel. Heck, the whole purpose of the coyote was to lower weight and expand volume, so I wouldn't have the big red blob bag on the back like my last 20 trips....shown below.... and there needs to be a fifty/ fifty canister on the back for cold beer... gotta draw the line somewhere - haha. Thanks.
  15. Been watching the snow melt reports for passes in Colorado. Last year, I had to skip a piece of the CO BDR due to fires. I plan to go get those sections done beginning about July 11/12 from Basalt or nearby, (even though Hagerman pass might not open until about July 15, so it will be touch and go there, AND Cottonwood pass is getting paved so the original BDR has an alternate route) but I also have about 3-6 other routes that I have always wanted to do, and a couple of new ones I might check out. Therefore, with good loop planning and open passes, I will do about 3-5 loops, each about 2-5 days long (some BDR mixed with some central Rocky wandering), mostly solo, although some riding buddies have hopeful wishes to join in. If you are in the area and want to wander for a day or for one of the loops, send me a PM. Loops may begin in different spots, dependent upon my truck/car camping spots. Also interested in Rainbow Trail near Salida, and Rim Rocker to Moab, but those may depend upon heat, not snow! If you know of anything I should consider near the very center of CO, feel free to share. I may camp from 2 different bikes, dependent upon street dirt ratios of loops. A Vstrom can be used like car camping after wandering long windy asphalt over the continental divide and finding traditional campspots. Camping off of the orange 525 will add a lot more flexbility to camp anywhere in the Rockies as I go over rough rocky terrain at high altitude (golf clubs, kayak, hikingboots and bicycling will also fill in the gaps between motorcycle loops) I originally hoped that the Coyote bag would fit more horizontally over my E-10's, but today I looked and the very firm interior side of the coyote, and it doesn't seem to allow that as an option. so, I will take off the E-10s and other bags and strap on the coyote today, this week, or weekend. I also hope to load it on top of a rotopak. If you have any insights to good installation, feel free to share, and also, order of packing the coyote??.... sleeping bag 1st or last, sleep pad, tent, chair, stove, tools, tube, clothes, etc... and best strategy for a firearm (lawfully in CO). Thanks. Cheers.