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Author Topic: 3,500 miles in 7 days on the Multi  (Read 5040 times)
muskrat
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« Reply #15 on: January 09, 2014, 09:22:35 PM »

He's busy washing his bike  coffee
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« Reply #16 on: January 10, 2014, 12:44:32 PM »

  laughingdp  Damn, this is a tough crowd.

Only toward SOME Lisa.

 laughingdp laughingdp

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« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2014, 07:51:27 PM »


I think he's ignoring us now.  The ol' silent treatment.
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« Reply #18 on: January 11, 2014, 08:55:04 AM »

He could be moving again.  Undecided
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« Reply #19 on: January 12, 2014, 12:30:40 PM »

So I was totally going to sit down this morning and write up the ride report.  Then, as the caffeine from that first cup of coffee kicked in, I realized... Wait, I have a Multistrada.  Why would I sit in front of a computer all morning.  I'm going for a ride!  And so I did.  

The report is coming, I promise.  

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« Reply #20 on: January 12, 2014, 03:29:42 PM »

Riding instead of posting: awesome response!
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« Reply #21 on: January 12, 2014, 04:14:12 PM »

So I was totally going to sit down this morning and write up the ride report.  Then, as the caffeine from that first cup of coffee kicked in, I realized... Wait, I have a Multistrada.  Why would I sit in front of a computer all morning.  I'm going for a ride!  And so I did.  

The report is coming, I promise.  

Good answer  Dolph  But my patience is running thin…

RIDE REPORT.  Please  Grin
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« Reply #22 on: January 12, 2014, 09:15:56 PM »

The OFFICIAL trip report... finally.

So with the Xmas holiday falling right in the middle of the week and nowhere to go I decided I would use the opportunity really test the bike out.  I haven't been back to Amargosa, NV where I grew up and where my Father and Grandparents are buried for a good 10 years.  I figured since it's cold I might as well head to where it's warm and pay some respects.  Given the conditions would be questionable through Santa Fe and Flagstaff I opted for the really boring route.  South on the 67 to Fort Stockton and then down to Alpine/Marfa/Marathon.  Then up through El Paso and into Tucson.  A stop in Phoenix to visit an old friend from my BofA days and then on to Vegas to stay with my cousin for a few days.  Amargosa and Death Valley are only 2 to 3 hours from Vegas so it would make a great launching point.  The Multi had about 5k miles on it and the stock tires were never going to make the trip.  So the first order of business was to get Baby a new pair of shoes.  I ordered some Pilot Road 2's since they worked so well on the VFR.  When they came in I couldn't find any rope or bungees so my trusty 20' UBS printer cable would have to suffice.  Some questioned the move but I think the Multi makes a great truck.



Next it was time to wire up the heated gear.  I knew it would still be cold for most of the trip (left Dallas with 31 degree on the readout).  I opted for the FirstGear heated jacket, glove liners and pants.  I really wish I'd have picked up the boot liners too.  The dual heat controller was a great investment.  Gloves could be controlled at one temp while the jacket and pants at another.  It was last minute so I used electric tape to make an arm band for the controller.  It worked but next time I will have a better set up.  Despite having two power outlets, the Multi's plugs don't match up so I simply wired the gear to the battery as per the instructions.  Now I have three outlets.  

 


The first part of the ride was a little rough.  I didn't dress warm enough and after about 30 mins I had to stop and add another layer, especially to the feet.  I had 3 pair of socks on by the end.  I lost some time because of the early ride adjustments so I didn't really stop for pictures until after San Angelo where I stopped at a all-in-one dealership, with Suzuki being the largest part, and picked up some much better socks.  The store manager was very helpful and we chatted a bit then back on the road.  





When I first got the Multi I had trouble with the front wobbling at higher speeds, especially with the top case on.  Jordan at AMS helped set up the suspension for me (I have the 2013 1200S so no skyhook) and now it handles much better.  There was some decent wind after San Angelo but despite being a light and tall bike I didn't find it much trouble to stay on track.  There were a ton of semi's between San Angelo and Big Lake and with the wind and the trucks doing about 80+ each one that passed created a sizable blast.  After Big Lake the traffic died down a ton and the ride became more scenic and enjoyable... and warmer!



I would up in Alpine and staying at the Maverick Inn which I do recommend.  Small (very small) bathrooms but the beds are very comfortable and it's a nice little place for a very good price.  Plus, since I was staying on Xmas even there was a little gift taped to each persons door in the morning.




That night I found out where the Marfa lights viewing spot was and rode out around 10 or 11pm.  The Marfa lights were actually very interesting.  Just points of light that pop up on the mountain side and change direction, color and move with really amazing speed when you think about the distance they are covering.  No clue what causes them but as interesting as they were, the night sky out there is absolutely amazing.  I spend about an hour out there watching the lights and the starts but eventually more and more people started showing up and I decided to head back for some sleep. 

Next Post... The next morning.  

« Last Edit: January 12, 2014, 09:24:44 PM by system error » Logged

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« Reply #23 on: January 12, 2014, 09:44:24 PM »

Xmas day I went down to the office of the Maverick Inn for the free breakfast which was some rolls, muffins, fruit, yogurt or whatever you like.  The one thing that really caught my eye was what first looked like a large scone.  It was actually sausage and cheese in Bisquick and I thought, that is brilliant and I want one!  In truth it was a little dry but butter would have helped.  Still a great idea and tasty nevertheless. 



A quick gas up and then it was on the road to Tucson.  I knew this would be the really boring part of the trip so I wasn't expecting much.  About 30 mins out I was surprised by the sight of what looked like, and was, a hot air balloon.  It turned out to be a stationary weather balloon (odd I know) for the Air Force but it was still cool to see. 




After snapping a few pics I headed back down the road.  I was minding my own business, just enjoy the music and zero traffic when this caught my eye. 





It's one of Marfa's many art projects scattered about but it is from a real Parda collection.  The sign explaining it says, no commerce will ever take place here as they never put a door handle on the building.




One of the books I've been reading recently is Ghost Rider by Neil Peart (drummer for Rush) who rode some amazing distance after losing both his daughter and wife in about a six month span.  In the book he started taking pics of his bike in the middle of the road when there wasn't any traffic.  So, I decided to start doing that as well. 



Sadly, there weren't many other photo ops between there and Tucson.  It's really flat and I hit a cross wind like I've never experienced before.  It really hit strong for about an hour but again, I never felt in any danger.  It did slow me down a little bit though. 



The ride into Tucson was long and tedious and the sun was kind enough to stand right in my way for the last hour.  A polarized lens would have come in very handy.  Upon entering AZ I was reminded how much I don't care for their drivers.  I recall how bad they were from college and it seems little has changed.  I decided to stay at the Hyatt near the airport for the hotel points and because it was cheap.  Plus I knew what to expect there, could get in a good run to help keep the legs active since they had just been hanging around for the last two days.  I did decide to have some fun with a Facebook post and found a decent Chinese restaurant open on Xmas Day so I could enjoy a little "Christmas Story" dinner.

Next post... the road to Vegas. 
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« Reply #24 on: January 12, 2014, 10:15:06 PM »

The Road to Vegas - December 26th. 

By this point I had ridden about 1,100 miles in the last two days and I knew this push wouldn't be as hard.  I use to drive Tucson to Amargosa back when I was in college and Vegas was a good 100 miles less.  For some reason my ipod didn't charge overnight so I was SOL for music.  As a precaution to this happening, I downloaded the Sea Wolf by Jack London (another get from Ghost Rider) as an audio book.  I listened that on the death race that is Tucson to Phoenix.  Nothing like a road full of Daddy's little princesses and Brodozers for a far as the eye can see. 

When I made it to Phoenix I was a bit early for my lunch with my friend and I had looked up the Ducati shop in Phoenix.  It was on the way and I thought it would be fun to stop in and say hello.  My mistake.  It was, again, an all-in one shop with KTM, Triumph, Ducati, etc... The group there couldn't have been less interested in me or where I came from (the parts guy was at least cool) so I decided to stop wasting my breath and just go to lunch. 

About an hour+ with my former co-worker and it was time to head out.  I remember living in Phoenix and I also remember how bad some of the traffic accidents could be.  You'd never think this was possible from as wide and smooth as their roads are.  I guess when you have narrow lanes and car eating potholes you pay more attention.   

While I won't post pics of it, A major part of this trip was to finally spread some of my Mom's ashes near Wickenburg, AZ where she was about to move to before the car accident.  I didn't really have a place in mind and figured I'd know it when I found it.  I would say it was about halfway between Wickenburg and Wikieup when it happened.  Traffic was a bit heavy and I kept looking for a nice pull off where I could walk out amongst the cacti and find a nice spot.  Nothing came up though and eventually the road got to very high speed twisty area.  So I said, well Mom, I guess we'll try on the way back but for now hold on because here we go!  I went flying through the hill corners knowing that the cop always waits at the bottom and since I was climbing I was pretty safe.  I honestly can't tell you why but I saw a sign on the side that say Hill Road / Bagdad.  "Hill Road" was all it took and I grabbed a handful of break and dove right to make the turn.  The road (97 off of the 93) was amazing.  Rolling hills, 25 mph corners and decent road.  Very technical and very fun.  I took the road to just before the 96 where I found a great rocky hill off to one size and thought, that's it!  I parked, gathered her up, jumped the fence and started climbing.  It was a great spot.  I said my goodbyes and went back to enjoy the road again.  A little less, and more, heavy hearted this time. 

Once you reach the 40, it's pretty much game over in terms of decent views.  I knew I was behind schedule and would make Vegas well after dark so in Kingman I switched back to heated gear, called my Cousin to give him an update and headed out.  The Hoover Dam now has a bypass bridge which is good and bad.  It saved me a good 30 mins but I missed going over, especially at night. 

Arriving in Vegas my cousin welcomed me with the promise of reliving some of our childhood by pulling these out of the closet.


We planned on spending the night in Amargosa and since there's nothing to do out there, we figured we'd blow stuff up. 

Next... The Road Home.
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« Reply #25 on: January 12, 2014, 10:37:59 PM »

The Road Home - December 27th

The trip from Vegas to Amargosa is about 90 miles so we were in no rush this morning.  The weather was great and so got some gas and headed out.


Amargosa Valley, NV.  Population: Who cares.  I use to hate this place.  So many bad memories that I immortalized this place as the 7th layer of Hell.  In reality however, it's just a brown desert that actually has some fun bits to it.  Coming back as an outsider really let me appreciate it this time... probably for the first time ever. 

The road in.


Here's a fun fact about Nevada.  Prostitution is legal outside of Clark County (Las Vegas) and this is what's know as the Cherry Patch Ranch.  I grew up about 15 miles from this... and no, to this day I have never seen the inside of it.  The outside looks much better than when I was a kid though.





Turning off the road from I-95 to Valley View.  Definitely a Ghost Rider moment.     



Here are sand dunes where I learned to ride (mostly four wheelers).  The actual name is Big Dunes (very original, yes).  If you look to the very left of the pic and the go straight back about 8 miles you would be at the house where I grew up.  Sadly, it has gone to pure crap by the current owner. 
 

I rode up to the cemetery (no pics here again) and said hi to Dad, Grandma and Grandpa then put a bit of the ash I saved from the Wickenburg stop with each of them.  Then I punched my cousin in the arm to man up again and rode off to visit a childhood buddy and his wife who still live out there. 

We stayed at the only Hotel/Casino out there called Longstreet which sits on the border of NA/CA and waited for dark...

My cousin and I grew up next to a cool guy who sold fireworks so we always had an affinity for them.  A quick drive down a mine road yielded a nice flat launch pad and so the antics began. 

Festival Balls! 


But why do one when you can do two?


And not to be outdone!



I don't know how or why but sulfur from fireworks seems to always make us hungry.


Next.... Death Valley
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« Reply #26 on: January 12, 2014, 10:53:58 PM »

Death Valley - December 28th. 

The weather was once again wonderful and I was really looking forward to this trip.  As a kid we would drive down to Furnace Creek and hit on all the German girls (the BMW and Merc test engineers would bring their families) at the HEATED pool.  Yes, Death Valley's public pool is heated, which is great because you don't actually need to bring a towel.  It's so dry, even at night, that you simply lay on the pool chair and in about 5 mins, all dry.  I kid you not. 



The thing about Death Valley is that it's in the middle of nowhere so the laws of supply and demand are in full force. 


I really just wanted to go see Bad Water, the lowest point in the US, and then take a nice ride back up to Vegas to spend time with my cousin and his family. 




Looking out over Bad Water. 


Since Bad Water is a bit more than 200' below sea level, any water that makes it here can't flow to the sea leaving a massive salt deposit.  The water is very harmful to drink since it's mostly salt. 

Interestingly, from the lowest point in the US you can see one of the highest points (the snow covered peak which stands more than 11k' high. 




The rock formations out there are really unique to see and the roads, while not a race track, are a little twisty. 



While I was walking back to the bike from walking out on the salt, a guy stopped me to ask what year my Multi was.  Turns out he just bought a 2014 and was planning a ride from Seattle to San Antonio.  We talked a bit and turns out he was trading out of a Triumph Tiger XC800 which was his first bike ever.  Heck of a way to start I thought. 

The ride back was pretty uneventful.  Through Parhump, Blue Diamond and through Red Rock.  There was so much traffic in the Red Rock area it wasn't worth stopping for picture but it was pretty and I would put it on the to do list if you ride through Vegas. 

Next up:  I skip a day!
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« Reply #27 on: January 12, 2014, 11:13:56 PM »

I Skip a Day - December 29th.

Nothing happened.  Seriously.  I rode from Vegas to Tucson as fast as I could.  I did buy some really good beef jerky and a jar of honey from Dwayne's Free Jerky at a Shell station in Bowie, AZ.  Very good stuff and it turned out to be a saving grace.  The bike started having some issue.  The clutch fluid and rear break fluid turned very dark and air got into the clutch.  I had to adjust the clutch lever out a notch to get it into gear while waiting to clear a board patrol check point.  The throttle started getting a bit twitchy at this point too.  I also realized changing to a 14 tooth front sprocket was a bad call for this long of a trip as my gas mileage suffered a great deal.  While I use to get high 30's I was seeing high 20's at some points.  I made it to Tucson, again staying at the Hyatt, and got in another 5 mile run.  Not having cruise control I found my shoulder was starting to ache some so I went to bed early knowing Tucson to Alpine was going to be rough.

December 30th - Thank god for the Davis Mountains!
This was a very tough run.  Nothing to see and I was wearing down.  To make things worse I caught, and followed, the tail of a nasty cold front.  I spent the first 250 miles in 41 degrees or below temperatures.  Even with heated gear you can feel that.  At the second gas stop I realized how tired I was becoming when I nearly clipped on of my side bags pulling into the station.  At that point I decided to give myself a good 15 mins, pulled the bike to a side parking spot and proceeded to devour a 5 hr energy and a whole bag of Dwayne's Fresh Jerky. 

Feeling better I pushed on until I reached the 118 which would lead me through the Davis Mountains to McDonald Observatory and back into sanity.  I switched out of several layers so I could actually have some dexterity when controlling the bike and headed down the road.  The Davis Mountains are actually very cool.  The roads are perfect but the Mulit is nothing if not confidence inspiring.  The stroll around the observatory was enjoyable as well but I was too tired to actually do any tours. 

 






I finished my day back in Alpine, TX at the Holland Hotel.  I really enjoyed Alpine and both hotels I stayed at were very nice.  The Holland Hotel has an excellent restaurant and the bar serves local beer, also very good.  I will definitely use Alpine as a jump off point for a trip through Big Bend. 

Next - Mr. Sulu, set a destination to Dallas.  Warp factor 10!
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« Reply #28 on: January 12, 2014, 11:32:57 PM »

The Journey Home - December 31st.

There's probably nothing worse than waking up to the knowledge that you have 500 miles to go and there is nothing to do but hold WOT all the way.  Here I will say the Multi is a capable "high speed tourer".  I won't say how high, certainly not superbike speed but the job got done nevertheless. 

There was frost on the seat in the morning and I didn't sleep well despite having a very comfortable bed so it was a slow start and a late start.  Plus, I knew the bike was having issues but not to the point of any concern of not getting home.  I take full responsibility for the bikes issues on the road.  I should have never set off without having flushed the fluids and lubed key parts.  That won't be a mistake I'll make next time for sure. 

Alpine to San Angelo was done in record time and I was happy for that.  My goal was to be back no later than 5pm given that it was New Years Eve and I didn't want to be in any sort of traffic for the last leg. 

After San Angelo and a quick 5 hr energy and power bar lunch I returned to a more humane speed but still spirited.  The only encounter with the Five-O that I encountered was a self inflicted pull over just south of Stephenville.  I crested a ridge to see Johnny Law sitting right there.  As I pasted and looked back I saw his lights were on.  Knowing how fast I was going I simply pulled over to the side and started taking off my gloves.  The cop rolled up on my right side and said, "I wasn't pulling you over, I just left my lights on too long from the last guy but you were going a bit fast through here, it's 70."  I thanked him for the information (and in my head I thanked him for not taking me to jail) and went on my way.  I finally connected with the 281 and then to the 20 and on towards Dallas.  Traffic started to get heavy and slow and it was a bit painful but finally I saw the downtown skyline and a renewed vigor kicked in. 

I pulled into my buildings garage, backed in to my spot and pretty much hugged the Mulit, promising to take her in ASAP to get all her gremlins worked out.  Then I crawled up to my apartment, ordered a pizza and took a long, hot shower.  I did actually manage to make it out to past midnight to ring in the New Year, but just barely.



All in all 3,513.5 miles!

When I took the bike to AMS they flushed the fluids and changed the oil (which was 1,000 miles past due  Lips Sealed).  They lubed the throttle cables and updated the EUC with a more "rideable" map.  The bike was miles better but still had a bit of twitch on the low end.  They suggested a mod to the outside air temp that would trick the bike into thinking it's much colder out.  This turned out to be the silver bullet.  The bike is amazingly smooth on the low end now and I can't wait to do another trip.  With a 15 tooth sprocket, heated boot liners, and more time devoted to actually getting good pictures this time. 

And with that, I give you, the trip report!



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« Reply #29 on: January 13, 2014, 05:21:17 AM »


Man, that is such an awesome ride report.  The term "epic" is so over used but I really don't know what else to call it. 

Thanks for sharing your story.
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