The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has just been posted. This time, Kim crashes a gate, we get fed from a giant silver bowl, visit Dr. Seuss’s secret home in the Czech Republic and run from a paparazzi hating dog. It all happens as we leave Slovakia and travel through the Czech Republic into Poland. You can travel with us by clicking HERE or by cutting and pasting this link into your web browser:
We hope you come along!
The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has just been posted. This time we run into mechanical problems, find the meeting place of Black Bison, inadvertently find Harley Heaven in Slovakia and get free Harley Fuel. If you’d like to ride along, click HERE. If this doesn’t work, cut and paste the below link into your web browser:
We hope you come along for the ride!
The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has just been posted. This time we endure more broiling heat, find pizza with a sex drive and rumble through the Dolomite mountains. If you’d like to ride along, click HERE or cut and paste the below link into your web browser:
Come along and enjoy the ride!
The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has just been posted. This time we end up in a wine cellar, check out a beer brewery and teeter on the edge of mountain cliffs. It’s all in a day’s riding.
You can come along with us by clicking HERE or by cutting and pasting the below link into your web browser:
We hope you come along!
The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has just been published. We ride deeper into France and find thunderstorms, Ancient Villages, lots of wine and road construction. Each had their fun elements… If you’d like to come along, click HERE. Or, you can cut and paste this link into your web browser:
We hope you enjoy the ride with us!
We’re getting excited to start Phase 2 of our Planet Ramble. Last year we rode across North America from Vermont, USA to Alaska, USA. For Phase 2 will we be shipping our bikes (both Ducati Scramblers) to London to start a large clockwise circular route. Although subject to change depending what we find and see along the way, we should be traveling through England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Romania, Hungary, Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Switzerland and France. We’ll return to England and fly back to the USA.
We will be storing the bikes in England until March, 2018 when we’ll return to London and complete counter-clockwise journey through Belgium, France, Spain, Portugal and Morocco. Once leaving southern Morocco, we will head north and once back into Europe, head east, ultimately spending some time in Italy, before returning ourselves and bikes to London for return to the US. This part of the journey is exciting and we’ll be posting about what we’ve seen and done as we travel.
Once again, we will have a satellite tracking capability so you can see us in real time as we travel. We’ll post link and additional info soon.
The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has been posted. This time we ride in rain, park in front of bright green buildings, jump a Cat, play in the fog, and stand in front of a barn. You can find it by clicking HERE or by cutting and pasting the link below into your browser.
We hope you enjoy it.
The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has been posted. This time we find bulging trees, more cable ferries, shrimp factory ships and more rain. You can find it by clicking HERE or by cutting and pasting the link below into your browser. We hope you enjoy it.
Crossing Into Canada We Find Craft Beer, A Very Large Bird, Thoroughbred Race Horses, Wind Turbines And Gravel Roads Along The Ocean
The latest episode of our Planet Ramble has been posted. This time we travel from Maine into Canada and find interesting craft beers, a very large bird, thoroughbred race horses, wind turbines and deserted gravel roads alongside the ocean. You can find it by clicking HERE or by cutting and pasting the link below:
We hope you enjoy the latest!
The latest episode of Stage 1A to our Planet Ramble has been posted. We ride into the heart of Maine in darkness, but miss hitting any moose. We end up exploring a state park where I walk on water and we hole up in an “old mill”. The following day we ride in rain and very bright sun. Then, in a very small town, we find relics from America’s 26th president, Teddy Roosevelt and Suffolk, England’s red communications technology.
You can find it by clicking HERE or cutting and pasting the link below into your browser.
The latest edition of our Planet Ramble has been posted. Instead of heading south to warmer weather, we do the opposite and head north. We prep two brand new machines for this adventure. Kim rides a Ducati Scrambler and Mike rides a Honda Africa Twin. At the beginning of this portion of our journey, we get lost in Maine, ride in the dark in moose country and head for the Canadian border.
You can find the latest by clicking HERE.
Or you can cut and paste the below link into your browser.
Hope you enjoy our latest!
The latest edition of our Planet Ramble has been posted. Today we ride from Glennallen, and Eagle River Alaska and end up at the airport for our flight home to Vermont. On the way, we pass some amazing glaciers, take the time to smell the flowers, ride great twisty roads and have a special guest send us off.
You can find the latest by clicking HERE or cutting and pasting the link below:
The latest edition of our Planet Ramble has been posted. We leave Destruction Bay and ride the final miles back to the US border, where my lack of attention to maintenance rears its ugly head and Kim gets sick.
You can find this update by clicking HERE or cutting and pasting the link below:
The latest edition of our Planet Ramble has been posted. Today we travel more of the ALCAN, have a quick visit with the RCMP and find Destruction (Bay) along the way. You can see it by clicking HERE or by clicking/cutting and pasting the link below:
We hope you enjoy it!
Long overdue, here is the latest update to our Planet Ramble. In this post, we travel a lot of miles, riding from Idaho, to the top of British Columbia and ending up in the Canadian Yukon. Along the way, we see some awesome sights along the Icefields Parkway with mountains and glaciers surrounding us. We then continue deeper and further north to Iskut, British Columbia and see the most amazing mirror lake we have ever seen. Ultimately we end up at Watson Lake in the Canadian Yukon and find a Signpost Forest. You don’t want to miss this chapter! Join the ride by clicking HERE or clicking on the link below. Safe travels!!!
Can a Ducati Scrambler be made into a comfortable light duty (i.e. pavement and maintained dirt/gravel roads) adventure bike good for longer trips and gravel roads? I had been asking myself that question for quite some time and have finally decided to investigate for myself. Those of you that follow us know that Kim and me just finished a trip from our home in Vermont to Eagle River, Alaska. We rode mostly on paved roads, although we did travel on some forest fire roads and unimproved roads. Kim’s Suzuki DR-650 performed admirably and carried her to Alaska easily. However, the DR is a fairly low powered thumper and riding it for long distances became somewhat of a tiresome experience for Kim. She said that although the bike did everything she asked and had a relatively lightweight feel, she felt under powered on those 75 MPH stretches of two lane roads common in the western US. Passing was more difficult that she desired, especially since I was traveling on a KTM 990 Adventure twin cylinder machine. She also wished that the bike was not a single because the thump, thump, thump of the single was tiring over time.
So I set about looking for a machine that was relatively small and light that we could turn into a light duty adventure bike. Since Kim is only about 5′ 3″ the bike could not be too high, nor could it be too heavy. She really wanted to get away from a single cylinder machine and frankly I don’t blame her. She never said a word during our over 7,500 mile trip to Alaska, but I had to ask myself, whether I would have enjoyed riding a single for that long a distance. My answer would be no, so I really shouldn’t expect her to feel any different. As I looked around the market, there really wasn’t much out there that fit Kim’s want list. She had already been on a V-Strom and felt it was too big and heavy. She had also ridden the BMW F650GS (twin) and F800GS extensively in Europe and South America, but she didn’t really like them because of their relative size and ride height. If she were to like a new machine, it would have to be about the size of her current Suzuki DR-650.
One of the few alternatives was the Ducati Scrambler. It’s a twin of approximately 800ccs and is actually very small in stature. Scramblers were created for dual sport, so if Ducati at least considered dual sporting, perhaps we could make this new Ducati into a light duty adventure bike. After doing some significant searching I found a number of bolt on parts that could potentially give her the utility of an ADV bike. So maybe, just maybe, we could adapt a Ducati Scrambler for ADV touring.
After a test ride and a bit of deliberation, we have taken the plunge. Kim is now the proud owner of a 2016 Ducati Scrambler Icon. The Icon is the base model of the Scrambler line and that suits us just fine. We’ve seen and tried Ducati’s own ADV parts and they fall far short of what we will need for our purposes. I’ve identified a number of parts that we are going to try and we’ll report on how well the fit our mission. So stay tuned for more updates as we attempt to convert a base Ducati Icon into an ADV machine Kim can love.
Just to entice you, here are a few pics of Kim’s soon to be converted Ducati Scrambler Icon which we will test out on a tour of the Canadian Maritime Provinces in early September.
The latest update to our Planet Ramble has been posted. This time we visit a Sprag Pole, and ride the Coeur d’ Alene Idaho state forest fire roads. You can find it by CLICKING HERE and starting with reply #89 or cut and past the below link
The latest update to our Planet Ramble has been posted. This time, we play with horses, munch on berries and visit with eagles. You can find it by CLICKING HERE or by using the following link:
While we are home now, we have posted the latest update to our Planet Ramble. At this point we are still in South Dakota and heading to Custer (yes that Custer) State Park. We make some friends while visiting.
You can find the latest update by CLICKING HERE starting with reply #70 .
We are about to head out on a long ride that may encompass many places and countries. We are very excited and will be leaving tomorrow, June 6, 2016. We will be chronicling our journey here on Ride2ADV.com as well as ADVRider. For the complete story and pictures from our travels, click HERE and you will be re-directed to ADVRider where we will be posting all the details of our journey complete with pictures.
We will also have a Spot satellite tracker that will update our position in real time. So if you want to see where we are 24/7, all you have to do is come to this page and click HERE or copy and paste this link
into your browser to see where we are.
We hope you’ll come along for the ride!
In a group of new introductions, Honda rolled out yet another adventure machine at the Osaka Motorcycle Show. Called the Africa Twin Adventure Sports Concept, this Africa Twin proposes to be a more adventure oriented and ready bike with a higher level of off road capability. The bike is still a concept at this time, but if the current Africa Twin and prototype CRF250 Rally are any indication, this up-rated Africa Twin just might make it to production.
Sporting a larger looking fuel tank, wide rear body panels that hint of perhaps more under seat fuel storage, a flat single piece seat, large, wide aluminum bashplate, bar risers, grippy billet platform footpegs, small frame, engine and rear brake protection bits, tubular luggage rack and upswept Termignoni exhaust,this version of the CRF1000L Africa Twin certainly looks the role of a much more sporty rally bike.
Missing in action are the bike’s turn signals, rear fender and mirrors, so it’s apparent that this bike is still a concept at this time. However, if a similarly equipped machine makes it into production, we are predicting that this bike will become more of an enduro model and a significant competitor to more off road worthy machines like the big KTM 1190. Time will tell.
Here are a few pictures to get your mouth-watering and your wallet burning.
Way back in July, 2015, we asked you whether it was possible that Honda was quietly attempting to take over the adventure motorcycle market segment (click here). Well two bits of news seem to confirm what we speculated more than 7 months ago. Honda is indeed taking steps to produce an adventure bike product line for the lightweight, middleweight and heavy adventure bike market segment.
We all now know that Honda has resurrected the beloved Africa Twin as its heavyweight adventure bike offering. Deliveries will start in the United States in June/July with other parts of the world already taking deliveries of the new machine. Although completely different from the original Africa Twin, response to the Africa Twin has been and continues to be exceptional. But now it appears that Honda has already taken significant steps to produce lightweight and middleweight adventure machines and upgrading the Africa Twin for more off road capability.
At last year’s Osaka Motorcycle Show, Honda rolled out its new “concept” CRF250 Rally. The concept was based upon Honda’s CRF250L dual sport bike, but was outfitted with a larger fuel tank, revised bodywork more in line with the adventure/rally sport, a windshield and other goodies like a Mugen racing dual exhaust, lots of billet aluminum and other anodized parts. During this year’s Osaka Motorcycle Show, Honda changed the bike’s designation from “concept” to “prototype”. If the new Africa Twin is any example, the change from concept to prototype means the bike will be released to production in the not too distant future.
Looking like a smaller street ready version of the CRF450 Rally that competed at the Dakar, the CRF250 Rally is a lightweight machine that Honda hopes will dominate the highly requested and under served lightweight adventure motorcycle market. The new prototype version was shown with a single Termignoni exhaust, bits of carbon fiber, a revised windshield, LED headlights and standard aluminum triple clamps and wheel hubs. It’s unlikely that the new CRF250 Rally will come stock with the Termignoni exhaust or the carbon fiber, but you could argue that if this is to be a true off road adventure machine, the Termignoni and carbon fiber are unnecessary and expensive bits that won’t serve a substantial purpose in day to day running. Perhaps Honda may offer these items as optional accessories, but in an effort to make the bike more affordable, these bits will likely not be part of the production machine. You can find more detailed information over at our friends at ADVPulse. As far as when the bike will actually be put into production, England’s Motorcycle News (MCN) claims that the new CRF250 Rally will be on sale later this year as an early release 2017 model.
Are you interested in what the CRF250 Rally prototype looks like? See the below for a more detailed look including some pictures that show some of the differences between the concept and prototype machine.
If Honda keeps this up, the likes of BMW and KTM may have to be looking over their shoulder from the competition, or worse yet, looking ahead as the competition passes them by. Stay tuned for additional articles and information on Honda’s potential new middleweight and heavyweight offerings in the next couple of days at Ride2ADV.
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Well Kim and I have finally reached what has been our goal for over 40 years. On the 4th of July 2015, we retired from the corporate world. No more suits, no more ties, no more deadlines. After spending decades doing what others wanted us to do, it’s finally our turn to go out and play. I’ve even started the beard that I’ve always wanted.
To mark our new found freedom, we’ve decided to try an around the world journey. For now, we’re just going to do a little shakedown run to ease into the retirement waters. We’re heading north from our home and will take a route that will take us from NH, through VT, Quebec via the Gaspe Peninsula, Labrador via the Trans Labrador Highway, Newfoundland via parts of the Trailway, Nova Scotia and ME.
Then we’ll take some time off to sell our home and many belongings so that we can make our way around the rest of the world.
I’ll be on a 2011 KTM 990 Adventure and Kim will be on a 2013 Suzuki DR650.
Although both have been somewhat farkelized I can’t leave good enough alone. Kim’s DR needs something more to make it worthy. So I’ve added some Barkbusters, a 5 gallon Acerbis tank, a swoopy high mount front fender and relocated her well used windshield lower.
For a detailed ride report with pictures, please click here:
We’ll also have a Spot satellite tracker so you can watch us as we make our way and you can find it here:
We’ll update our ride report with pictures and text constantly, so remember to come back often. Please note that there are multiple pages at this ride report, so click on the page number at the bottom or top of the page as the ride report gets longer (you’ll see a block at the top or bottom of the page that says Page X of Y).
Multiple websites are reporting that the long-awaited KTM 390 Adventure lightweight adventure bike is making steps towards production. It is being reported that according to import documents, KTM has imported two test mules into India for “R&D purposes” under the code name KT22. The 390 Adventure is purported to be based on the KTM Duke 390 and RC390. As such, the sites are saying that the 390 Adventure will be the recipient of some of the components from the street siblings above.
Some of the sites are quite detailed about the components and details of the 390 Adventure which potentially makes these reports subject to increased scrutiny. If they “know” these things, why don’t they affirmatively say that the bike has received the production nod from KTM? Nonetheless, they are reporting that the 390 Adventure will likely share the Duke/RC390 engine. If this is the case, we can expect a 373 cc single cylinder, fuel injected engine that makes 43 horsepower and approximately 26 ft/lbs of torque. This will not put the bike on similar power footing with the KTM 690 Enduro, but hopefully could add to the range capability of the machine. It will reportedly have a six speed gearbox with the engine tweeked for application to a light adventure bike.
It is also reported that the 390 Adventure will get heavier suspension with longer travel, higher ground clearance, disk brakes on both ends and more off road oriented tires. This definitely makes sense and would likely be necessary for the bike to be a success. It it is being reported that the 390 Adventure will come with luggage mounts, a larger windshield and bark busters. Lastly, there will be some styling changes (obviously) with redesigned lights, a more comfortable seat and a side mounted exhaust.
Given that the test mule “R&D” bikes have been imported to India, it makes sense that the bike may be produced in the Bajaj plant in Chakan. Time will tell…