Saturday, November 21, 2015

Adding to the Stable...

I had an outstanding year thus far in the saddle of my 2015 Kawasaki Versys 1000 LT. Two major trips out west where we scaled all 14,000 feet of Pikes Peek, visited the Grand Canyon and knocked a loop around the Apache Trail in Arizona. Then I had a bunch of shorter, regional trips including a myriad of rides around Florida, including a great Key West/Everglades trip, and then a couple runs up to the Smoky Mountains in North Carolina. All in all, 18,500 miles worth of road trip.

Unfortunately, now I'm stuck in Florida until at least late May (2016). That's great from the standpoint that I have year 'round riding capability. It's not so great from the standpoint that there's not too much in terms of good riding here in Flatistan. Unimaginative, long straight roads, no elevation to speak of, been to about everywhere, done about everything.

One area of riding that I got to thinking may compensate for this shortfall is dual sport. I have a long history of dirt and adventure riding, dating back to the mid-70s, but broke away from it back around 2012 following an adventure ride up to Deadhorse, Alaska. Plus, there are a number of dual sport clubs that I continue to belong to since those days; Dixie Dual Sport, for example. I know these clubs are constantly sponsoring rides. So yeah, I decided to jump back in.

As for the equipment, I landed on a motorcycle that has been around (in basically the same form) since the mid 80s ... the 2016 Kawasaki KLR650.

Specs for the KLR650 are...

Somewhat antiquated in its engineering (carburation, mediocre suspension), the KLR650 is probably going to need quite a bit of modification. However, that's one of the characteristics that attracts me too this model. I mean, at $6,900 (msrp) there's quite a bit left in my wallet to work on fine tuning this booger to my liking and, as you can tell by now, I like wrenching on my bikes. 

Plus, the new digital camo is extremely kewl looking!

So, where and when do I get one of these bad boyz? I set my dealer on a course of finding me one as soon as possible. The sales manager got back to me and confirmed my order and delivery in two to three weeks. That's around first week in December. Enough time to have a great time in the Ocala National Forest, Richloam, Withlacoochee State Forest, Everglades National, etc. etc. etc. this winter and spring.

So, not to get my Versys Ventures Blog all congested with non-Versys stuff, I've started a new blog called KamoKLR on Blogspot to chronicle the KLR650 travels and mods.

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