Monthly Archive October 2011

Slime Tire Top Off Tire Inflator

I’d had a wonderful sideways slide down the road due to a front tube blowout on my KLR 650, so you’ll understand why proper tire inflation has become something of an obsession with me.

Some friends and I made a trip down to the Catskill Mountains in New York for an rally called “Color in the Catskills” and when the weather turned colder, I noticed that my front tire was a bit low, so my friend Dee pulled out a wee air compressor that bulked a little larger than a ham sandwich, you know the ones that are made with generous slices of ham, have some nice old tart cheddar and a spot of bold mustard on some lovely white bread? The tire inflator doesn’t taste as good, but worked very well topping off the tire using the 12 volt cigarette lighter I’ve installed on my bike. While her gauge was broken, I used the one I carry in my tank bag to sort it out. For a $15 investment at Walmart Canada, it seems like a great addition to a travel tool kit, so I went out and bought one the next time I found my self in Wally Mart. πŸ˜‰

I used it to inflate my tires when I swapped out my street tires to my dirt tires. It took a bit, but brought up the pressures easily although I don’t trust the built in gauge at all. πŸ˜‰

2 Bikes, 2 States, 2 Days and 2 Turkeys

Two Turkeys
I’d taken a week’s vacation from work, and had made plans with Dee to ride down into Pennsylvania the following Monday, when I’d had a front tire blow out on my KLR, sending the bike sliding down the road sideways at 40 kilometres per hour, and bashing up my hand to the point where I had difficulty and pain getting a glove on and off of it, so the ride was postponed, but understandably Dee was less than happy about it, so as I’d no plans for the Thanksgiving weekend, we developed a mini ride that would have us leaving Toronto Friday night to cross the border and head for Springville NY to overnight, but as you can see, we didn’t quite make it that far…
Night 1 – Richmond Hill ON to Gowanda NY

Everybody was Karate fighting! Those dudes were fast as lightning!

We spent the first night crossing the border and staying in a motel in the town of Gowanda NY where we hit the bar and enjoyed imported beer. Molson Canadian for $2.75 a bottle. Does is make you proud to be A Good little Ontarian traipsing off to the Brewer’s retail?

$62 dollars a night, a bit dated but warm and dry.

Day 2 – Gowanda NY to Renovo PA
Yes, it’s this much fun to ride with me. Or I just told her breakfast was on me.

Deep in Amish country New York State, we seem to be a bit out of place…

Inflation hits New York

The boys are out playing, plowing the vegetable garden on a Saturday morning.

Ugh! Interstate, but it was the only bridge to get here…

This is why we’re here, and we’re not even in Pennsylvania yet!

We made it!

What’s that you say? You DARE me?! πŸ˜€ BWAHAHAHA

Dee likes the camera. πŸ™‚

They’re not running anymore.

Ramming speed!

Squidding it Pennsylvania Style.

…As Sapphire stares, envious… wishing for knobby tires and a more giving suspension πŸ™

Okay, I’ll be good and stick to the asphalt. πŸ™

A much happier Dee. πŸ˜€

She gives it a go for my sake, but the Katana is much happier on the macadam,  Garmin, not so much.

PA Route 120 heading East.

872 North to Coudersport is fun too, but not this trip.

There were bikes all along Route 120, more group rides than I’ve ever seen before. Twelve or more along  this stretch alone.

Beautiful roadside views like this might have been the reason.

Ape Hangers

They can’t be comfortable?!

I make all the pretty girls smile. 

Dee’s like, “wow bright!”, I’m like, “These shades will increase the coolness of this shot by a factor of 3.76!” πŸ˜›

Apples for sale! I had to stop and see if they had any Honey Crisp.

We parked in front of a private drive that crossed the rail road tracks to a home. Oops.

Renovo PA, we’re a bit early, so we’ll push on and get to Hyner View State Park.

It’s a trip highlight, if you’re in the area, and you say you like twisties, it’s a must!

A few more hairpins to go and we’ll be at the lookout you can see straight ahead.

Deandrea says “Ünforgettable! Thanks for the experience!”

They’ve placed one stone from every county in PA here, and this was the most fascinating.

And this wins the best dressed award.

W41.3267, N -77.6232
Extreme Closeup!

Such beauty, elegance, wit and grace. πŸ˜›

I thought I’d try my hand at Hang Gliding, but I just don’t get it

I think I have the Hang part down pat…

Hey Mom, Happy Thanksgiving! I love you.

Skill testing downhill hairpins, my favourite, NOT!

Blurry shot saved by B&W effect? No, but at least you can drool over the road we were on. Go ahead, I run great rain tires.

South to Lockhaven and dinner.

Sunset along PA Route 664 towards Lockhaven PA

My camera is not doing these dusk shots any justice

Never has riding to Supper been so entertaining. 
Day 3 – Renovo PA to Richmond Hill ON

Looking at the map above, I really have to mention that the entire day was wonderful until just past Holland NY where we jumped back onto the highway, after which it became a hazy blur of Interstate, QEW and 401 lane blocking, shoulder checking, merging boredom, with an adrenaline edginess brought on by careless lane changing cagers.

The last of the morning mist is being burned away.

This is the very first SuperSport ride we’ve seen all weekend, but they picked the best road for it.

Yamaha XT660? 600?

This one’s for you Willie.

I have a similar shot from the Labour day long weekend ride I did on this route with Willie.

We’re heading North, he’s riding South… Could it be?

Hell yeah! It’s KiteRider from

Dee is tailgunner…

Umm, Dee? We’re not going that way…

It’s worth the stop. The food is very nice. Coudersport PA

They wouldn’t be so welcoming if they heard my exhaust…

Friendship NY

The last of the rolling hills. *sniff sniff*

Holland NY

Ron Kierstead likes this

I was worried this fell off my bike… until I saw that
a.  it was not covered in oil and dirt
b. it had no sractches
It’s not off of my KLR! πŸ™‚

Yes the mirrors are useless.

They’re ready and waiting for us on the other side, aren’t they?

Less than 20 minutes to cross back over. πŸ˜€

Hair by Shoei

Dee all geared up for her ride to Minden with the Southern Cruisers this morning.

Dave! How ya doin’?

2011 Color in the Catskills

I’m a sometime poster on under the nickname of Rotten Ronnie, and my friend Willie suggested that we ride down last year to attend the ADV rally held at Hunter Mountain Inn and sponsored in part by Max BMW.

So this year Darryl finally got his BMW sorted and we recruited a few more to fill out our numbers, including my friend Dee and my brother Shaun, who is in his first season on a motorcycle.

2011 Color in the Catskills

Richmond Hill ON to Hunter NY
83,588 kilometres

 It started off with my brother’s KLR losing headlight and signals, then failing to start after Shaun rode it down to my house from Barrie, so a quick trip to Wally Mart was in order to buy a replacement. It was exactly what was needed, as three days later the bike was running strong on the new battery and the old one that I’d left on a trickle charger was still not taking a charge. It’s a KLR, that battery had been in the bike since Dan bought in (two years ago?), but otherwise those bikes are very reliable.

Crossing over the St. Lawrence Seaway over into the United States. 

While impressed with the view, Shaun was a bit nervous about the wind, but as the weekend progressed and he crossed a few more, he learned some techniques to deal with it:

  • keep your body loose, a bend in the elbows and relax your hands on the grips, knees in to the tank, and balls of the feet on the pedals
  • keep to the posted limit, going too slow makes the bike less stable and more susceptible to the wind, while going too fast leaves you less reaction time and less run off to correct for a gust of wind.
  • look where you want to go, not where the wind is pushing the bike
  • each bike has it’s own “sail area” and will react to the wind differently. The KLR he’s riding has a high centre of gravity, and the wind seems to push the tires out from under the bike. I like to react to the wind and simply use my body lean angle and counter steering to correct my course.
  • in steady wind you can shift your bum onto the edge of the seat on the side AWAY from the wind, this will steer the bike into the wind, and counteract it’s sideways push. Adjust your seating position as necessary, and be alert for breaks in the treeline, rock formations and others that would cause the wind to suddenly drop off so you have plenty of warning.
Shaun later found that he was far too tense and that was causing him to steer the bike with his body and introduce a secondary wobble. Once he had that sorted out, he was much more confident and able while riding.

The Fast group

Here is the best picture I have of the fast group. We, on the other hand were Team Kawasaki, a Nomad, and two KLR’s. πŸ™‚

This is what happens when you forget a warm pair of pants. 

Willie took these great pictures.

I think Shaun is going to try to jump this!

 A novel kick stand

She tours on this 250.

Water and debris snapped these I-beams

Kiersted Museum – a famous relative.

The Hudson River

This is the best shot I got of this waterfall this year…

More from last year:

We now take you back to your regularly scheduled program… πŸ™‚

Can you see the car in front of Dee? Shaun has the right idea here with his vest.

Griffiths “TVR” Handbuilt luxury sports cars