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East Texas Riders?

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Me and a friend did it in Jan '17 over two days. We cut off 9 mile rd (closed now I think) and a few of the NE dirt routes to make it 350 miles.

Highlights here (us being silly)
Great Video, I hope its packed like that when I go ride on it. I worry about sand more than anything. The factory Kawasaki Versys-X 300 tires are 80/20's. Also I have spoked wheels with tubes. What do people carry to fix leaks? I do have one of those emergency patch kits that have CO2 cartridges and glue and patches for tubes. Also I have the 3 piece tire changing bars for prying off the tire to get the tube out.
 

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Great Video, I hope its packed like that when I go ride on it. I worry about sand more than anything. The factory Kawasaki Versys-X 300 tires are 80/20's. Also I have spoked wheels with tubes. What do people carry to fix leaks? I do have one of those emergency patch kits that have CO2 cartridges and glue and patches for tubes. Also I have the 3 piece tire changing bars for prying off the tire to get the tube out.

Sand is your friend... it is soft when you fall down in it :-P Tires make a big difference though. A knobby will be easier in sand than a 50/50 tire.

When I ride my KTM 530 EXC (tubed tires), I carry a spare front and rear tube in addition to some patches. I also carry a pump because it sucks if you run out of CO2 before you are done fixing the tire (it happens). I carry all the tools needed to completely remove the front and rear wheels and to remove the tires from the rims if needed. On more than one occasion, I have had tubes cut and torn from nails such that they could NOT be patched. I used to have all that packed easily into a Giant Loop Mojavi bag. Now I carry it in a Kreiga Overlander 30 set of bags.
 
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Thanks. You answered a primary question that was in the back of my head, is should I bring tubes? I will get some replacements right away. I do have a mini-12v pump also on my big bike so I will pack that also. I was looking at hand pumps online, and there are allot to choose from but they are all for bicycles, even though most advertise the ability to pump at least 80lbs or more. Anyone have a hand pump? There are some pretty nice small ones that are all aluminum and steel and are about 12 inches long.
 

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There are some hand pumps that will also allow you do use the CO2 cartridges. Then you use the pump if you run out of CO2. If you have to inflate a typical motorcycle tire from empty, you may be pumping a long time, but you should not have any problem getting them up to the correct pressures. I am lazy, hence the 12V pump :-P
 
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What do yall think about the East Texas 450 next weekend? I have never ridden it so anyone that has I would like to know their thoughts? Yes there is some rain, but my thinking is some rain is a good thing because it will pack down the sand. The roads look sandy along the 450 trail. The tires I have are factory and are 80/20 offroad. Some people say they are 50/50. I don't know if I agree that the IRC Trail Winner GP-210 is a 50/50 tire. It has no knobs. It performs very well on packed dirt, and grass but not on loose sand and mud.

 
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I'd love to do the east texas 450 but on a small real dual sport. Not my vstrom650. I dont mind a few dirt roads but all day dirt riding on a bigger heavy (470 lbs) bike is not for me. I really need a wr250r or drz400 or something similar. How much does that kawi weigh?
 

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The weight isn't so much of an issue as the particular bike and perhaps the tires on the bike. I run my 1200 GS on dirt roads all the time. Unless it gets real muddy or deep sand for long stretches, most of the county and forest roads are non issues. At best, they are just bumpy, so your suspension will be more of an issue than which bike you ride. Unless things get real technical, my GS is far more comfy and easy to ride on dirt roads all day than my KTM 530 EXC. I had an 04 Vstrom 650 and never really cared for riding that particular bike off the pavement, but lots of folks love it... :shrug:
 

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My bikes specs say 386lbs. Its pretty heavy, but not so heavy I can't pick it up when it falls over.

That extra 150 lbs or so on a big adventure bike is REAL obvious when they are laying on the ground!! Good technique and some thinking before lifting make a difference, but they are still heavy! The first time I picked up my KTM 530, I almost started laughing out loud at how easy it was compared to my 1150 GS, 1200 GS, and even my old KLR 650.
 
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Looks like weekend rain, AGAIN...this weekend coming up. I am wanting to get out there to Lufkin and ride these trails, and I want to do it before it gets sweltering hot, which could happen any minute since we skip Spring and Fall on the Gulf Coast.
 

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The rain is getting old. I am only off every other weekend at best and it seems like every weekend I have been off it has rained :argh:
 
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You would be surprised how fun the Ark 500 is. I'm 59 and it was easy. We ride in a group great guys from all walks of life. and all skill levels.
Looks a little wet for any kind of dirt roads right now unless its just 100% offload. I might be up for a cruise Sunday if the weather holds. I've got a bad case of cabin fever. Been nursing some broken ribs.
You taking the 1290 to the 500?
 
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I am watching the Lufkin forecast carefully. It is now saying 100% chance of thunderstorms between 11am and 4pm at .9in of rain, however, after that, a cold front is moving in and it will be cool and sunny Saturday evening and Sunday. Showing high of 68 and a low of 48 after the rain for Sunday. Thats perfect motorcycle gear weather. Anyhow, I will be out there Sunday. I am unsure at this point where is a good place to leave the truck.
 
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I'm in Houston area (Waller) as well. Interested in any rides particularly West, hill country ish. Open to any rides though.
 
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I sold my KLR recently. Undecided presently. Looking at a BMW F800GS or a KTM 250 EXC. Ride where I’m going or drive? 500 lbs loaded or 250 lbs? So on and so forth?
 

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I sold my KLR recently. Undecided presently. Looking at a BMW F800GS or a KTM 250 EXC. Ride where I’m going or drive? 500 lbs loaded or 250 lbs? So on and so forth?

You are eventually going to wind up with two bikes :-P A big one for the adventure rides that include highway miles and some dirt, and then a smaller one for the more technical rides in dirt and on trails.

I have a 1200 GS and a KTM 530 EXC... :Thumb:

I also have a 2007 GS for sale if you might be interested :trust:
 
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I sold my KLR recently. Undecided presently. Looking at a BMW F800GS or a KTM 250 EXC. Ride where I’m going or drive? 500 lbs loaded or 250 lbs? So on and so forth?

250 EXC if you plan on doing dirt roads & single track The BMW 800 is a great bike if you will be doing lots of pavement though
 

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For 95% of the riding you might do in East Texas, the 800 GS would be excellent. Think about how often you might actually be riding single track trails versus dirt/paved roads.
It would not be fun to have a bike great on trails and then try to use it for highways and dirt roads. You really need to decide which type of riding you are more likely to do and get a bike that fits that use, especially if you can only get one bike.
 
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Thanks guys. I raced enduro competitively in the 80's. Dirt is my first love. However, good dirt is hard to find and I'm getting too old to kiss trees at 25 mph. On the other hand, I'm getting too old to pick up a 500+ pound bike. Leaning 250 -350.
 
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I learned a BIG lesson a couple of weeks ago. I live in East Texas and took the 1290 for some back (dirt) roads. I have a track that leads me to Melissa and is 90% dirt. Problem is that some of it is Black dirt (we call it Black Gumbo). I got into some Massive ruts caused from a giant combine. The ruts were muddy and filled with water, so I tried to go on top and in between the ruts. I made it about half way and it got a little soft and over I went. Bike fell INTO one of the ruts upside down. (Black Gumbo) I could not for the life of me pick that beast (1290) up. I was by myself. Had phone service so I called AAA. They couldn't get a truck close enough so they called 2 other BIG guys to come and get the bike up. Once up I could get it out. HUGE lesson learned about that bike. If it was ANY of my other bikes that would NOT have happened. I was totally Embarrassed and completely exhausted. My dirt bike friends are still laughing at me. Moral ro that story is be Very careful what type of riding you do on a Big bike especially if you're alone. Deep mud on a 1290 is NOT your friend.
 
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I learned a BIG lesson a couple of weeks ago. I live in East Texas and took the 1290 for some back (dirt) roads. I have a track that leads me to Melissa and is 90% dirt. Problem is that some of it is Black dirt (we call it Black Gumbo). I got into some Massive ruts caused from a giant combine. The ruts were muddy and filled with water, so I tried to go on top and in between the ruts. I made it about half way and it got a little soft and over I went. Bike fell INTO one of the ruts upside down. (Black Gumbo) I could not for the life of me pick that beast (1290) up. I was by myself. Had phone service so I called AAA. They couldn't get a truck close enough so they called 2 other BIG guys to come and get the bike up. Once up I could get it out. HUGE lesson learned about that bike. If it was ANY of my other bikes that would NOT have happened. I was totally Embarrassed and completely exhausted. My dirt bike friends are still laughing at me. Moral ro that story is be Very careful what type of riding you do on a Big bike especially if you're alone. Deep mud on a 1290 is NOT your friend.
One of my fears when exploring alone, sand is my demon on big bikes! At my age not sure I can pick it up, even if level!! Question, could you have made it if you had just goto in the rut and motored through it? Or just too soft and deep.
 
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Sand is tough but nothing like mud. I ride a lot in the sand so its easier for me than some.
Actually had to stay in the rut to get it out after getting in upright. Bike was completely upside down in the rut!
Both bike and me were covered in black mud. Ruts were about 3 ft deep. Not one of my best decisions but I sure as **** learned one or two. I bought soft bags and will put them on today. Not only does it soften the fall but helps when you want to pick the bike up because it's laying on the bags not all the way flat. I took the 500 to the Ark 500 and could have done it on the 1290 but not nearly as easy or fun. I came back early because one of our guys got hurt, one broke down and one was too tired to continue. I didn't want to ride by myself or in the poring rain.
 
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Sand is tough but nothing like mud. I ride a lot in the sand so its easier for me than some.
Actually had to stay in the rut to get it out after getting in upright. Bike was completely upside down in the rut!
Both bike and me were covered in black mud. Ruts were about 3 ft deep. Not one of my best decisions but I sure as **** learned one or two. I bought soft bags and will put them on today. Not only does it soften the fall but helps when you want to pick the bike up because it's laying on the bags not all the way flat. I took the 500 to the Ark 500 and could have done it on the 1290 but not nearly as easy or fun. I came back early because one of our guys got hurt, one broke down and one was too tired to continue. I didn't want to ride by myself or in the poring rain.
3 foot deep wouldn't be easy on a small bike! Gumbo is tough on any bike, understand that. Offroad property we used to ride on, with just a drizzle you couldn't go forward, lol.
 

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One of my fears when exploring alone, sand is my demon on big bikes! At my age not sure I can pick it up, even if level!! Question, could you have made it if you had just goto in the rut and motored through it? Or just too soft and deep.

If I am alone, I err in the side of caution. I won't go through deep mud. If I can't get around it, I turn around. If I were with a group, I might be up for giving it a try, but not alone. As for sand, if it is deep, then the tires matter. If I have the TKC 80s on the GS, then I'll have at it. I am not so willing with the TKC 70s.
 
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