Trans America Trail: 2015

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markwelna
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Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #1 by markwelna » Wed Jul 29, 2015 12:49 pm

Hello Goldwing friends. I haven't been around much lately as I've been busy riding and working on the motorcycle fleet. I did another European tour last summer and this summer it was the TAT.

I just want to share a couple of pictures but i'll give you a brief description of the trip first.

We rode 900 miles in two days from St. Paul, MN to near Dodge City, KS where we got on the trail. We rode 3000 miles on the trail in 12 days through Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Oregon, and California to our destination and the end of the trail on the coast in Port Orford, OR. Then we rode 2200 miles back home to MN in 4 days on the bikes.

6 guys, 2 currently living in Europe, 4 from Minnesota. 0 dirt experience. Bikes bought and modified solely for this trip. It was MUCH more difficult then anticipated. The trail was remote, technical, muddy, sandy, with numerous mountains passes. What an adventure.

Some days we saw no one but each other. And cows, lots of cows. Many of the most challenging and scenic sections didn't get photographed because I was either in awe, too scared to stop, or a combination of both.

To anyone considering this ride, do it and do it soon while the Wild West remains as wild as it is.

Not to worry about the GL1000. Yellow Betty is taking a tour to the Smokey Mountains in September!

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Yes, this is the road.

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We fought this mud for days.

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The KLR and the TW200 had the most trouble in the mud.

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XR650R

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A view from one of our camping spots.

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The middle of nowhere, Utah.

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I love tumbleweeds.

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We went a little crazy on a salt lake and rode through the biggest dirt devil i've ever seen.

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Port Orford, OR.
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #2 by Sagebrush » Wed Jul 29, 2015 1:14 pm

Beautiful ride, you have to be young to do that type of trip. I'm curious how you managed to keep the bikes gassed up. Just going by your pics it looks like you went for weeks with no sign of civilization.
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #3 by markwelna » Wed Jul 29, 2015 1:28 pm

Sagebrush wrote:Beautiful ride, you have to be young to do that type of trip. I'm curious how you managed to keep the bikes gassed up. Just going by your pics it looks like you went for weeks with no sign of civilization.


The trail is made up of sections that are based on fuel stops, i.e., a section begins and ends at a fuel stop. The longest section is about 180 miles. I installed a 5.3 gallon aftermarket fuel tank giving me a range of 200 - 250 miles. We also had a 2 gallon rotopax tank that was used for the TW200 which had a tiny tank.

mark

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This is roughly the route that we followed. The GPS coordinates or route came from GPSKevin's website. The actual route can be seen there.

https://sites.google.com/site/gpskevin/ ... rica-trail
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #4 by Sagebrush » Wed Jul 29, 2015 4:55 pm

Trip of a lifetime right there. My hat is off to you for completing that challenge. Two things about it that put me off
ONE: I HATE MUD, had my fill of it growing up on a farm in Michigan one mile east of Lake Erie and
TWO: I hate camping because.................... see reason ONE. :-D
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #5 by Casper » Wed Jul 29, 2015 6:57 pm

Great trip, thanks for the pics! Something I would have loved to have done,....a couple, or four, decades ago. ;) Good on you and the group for doing it.

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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #6 by desertrefugee » Wed Jul 29, 2015 7:58 pm

Wow. Amazing. As above, it's too late for me to make that ride. I did do the Appalacian Trail one Summer many years ago - from South Mountain to Katahdin.

The TAT run here was a ride.

Congratulations for having done it.
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #7 by zman » Wed Jul 29, 2015 8:45 pm

Sounds fun, I had my share for 30 years, taking it easy now...Thanks for the report.
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #8 by Brant » Wed Jul 29, 2015 9:31 pm

Congrats on the trip. I'd love to do it, maybe someday. In the meantime I can hang out at ADV rider. Thanks for sharing.
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #9 by HOTT » Thu Sep 24, 2015 6:11 pm

Just Awesome! And very tempting. I think about that trip a lot. Great photos.
Good on you guys for taking on the challenge. tumb2 tumb2

thanks
HOTT

side note; I bumped into this young man outside of Florence, OR (July,31st).
He had just finished the TAT a few days before and was headed to a truck depot
to send his KLR back to NC.


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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #10 by markwelna » Thu Mar 24, 2016 2:48 pm

And, I'm overdue for an adventure so here are some more pictures. Continental Divide Route this August!

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Spearville, KS

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Fences everywhere

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Imogene Pass

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TW running out of breath

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Big Red Pig

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Long way down

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The KLR was always sleepy

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I went down a few times too

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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #11 by RAT » Fri Mar 25, 2016 11:34 am

Awesome ..... nice work .....

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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #12 by Whiskerfish » Fri Mar 25, 2016 2:53 pm

Cousin of mine took his Son out and did the Divide a few years ago. His Son was a Senior in School and my Cousin figure it would be there last chance together to do something big together so they went for it. Had their bikes trucked out to the Canadian Border and spent about a month on the trails all the way down to the Mexican border. He considers it one the best things he has ever done.
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #13 by markwelna » Fri Mar 25, 2016 3:00 pm

Whiskerfish wrote:Cousin of mine took his Son out and did the Divide a few years ago. His Son was a Senior in School and my Cousin figure it would be there last chance together to do something big together so they went for it. Had their bikes trucked out to the Canadian Border and spent about a month on the trails all the way down to the Mexican border. He considers it one the best things he has ever done.


Good to know. What a thing to do with your son. I turned 40 in December and though I've had more then my share of adventures, I made the only new years resolution I've ever made to have more adventures and to do more of the things that I've always wanted to do. The Trans America Trail was the biggest adventure that I've had so far. We were riding over constantly changing terrain at the limit of our ability through the middle of nowhere basically for 3000 miles. Colorado was of course beautiful but my favorite part was riding across the Great Basin.

I am extremely excited to ride the Divide Route. We will start in Banf and end in Antelope Wells, NM on the Mexican border. I've heard it described multiple times as, "the most beautiful ride possible in the United States".

-mark
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #14 by Whiskerfish » Fri Mar 25, 2016 4:23 pm

He is a bit of an artistic type guy (School Principal) and he had several of those personalized coffee table books made up afterward and they are really spectacular.
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Re: Trans America Trail: 2015

Post #15 by Brant » Mon May 09, 2016 6:50 am

Beautiful beautiful. Life should always have some adventures.
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