Rode the GT to the Tex-Mex Frontier
First annual “Ride to Presidio and back” report.
I will get this out of the way first. 06 K1200GT with airbox/software upgrade last December. Engine ran superbly. No HI/BBS, stalls, hesitations, sensitive throttle,
Rear Drive didn’t fail, nor did the EWS.
The bike was flawless in performance, handling, and comfort, period.
However I am occasionally hearing the clutch chirp taking off in first gear. Several times per day.
This was a throw down ride. Meaning I gather up all my worn out jeans, thread bare shirts, thin socks, and dainties with holes in them. Shitcan them at the end of the day. The goal is to come home with no dirty laundry-- except for what I am wearing.
For you number crunchers out there. Mulva the Zumo told me I drove 1849 miles. 41.06 mpg total average (my math not the worthless BC). Average price of $3.71 per gallon, but not all was premium, several stations were out.
Temperatures ranged from 40 F (Alpine) to 95 F (River Road).
Altitude varied from 900 feet to 6700 feet.
Here’s the kicker. Most of this was driven in headwinds and crosswinds. 40 to 50 mph from Wichita to Wichita Falls. About half that much of the rest of the time. A low pressure system in the four corners area was to blame. Kicked my face in Wednesday and Thursday. Calm in Kansas on Saturday, go figure!
This caused the worst ever mileage I have ever recorded from this GT. Before this it had never dropped below 40 mpg! Well that’s changed, 35 mpg on two refills! Very close to my all time motorcycle low of 33 mpg from an 02 K12RS on some of the same route in 02!
I did have several tanks of 48 mpg.
Wednesday April 16: Got my kitchen permit stamped. Andover Kansas (Wichita) to Midland Texas to visit my son and his new bride. 590 miles.
Thursday April 17: Mulva, show us the way to the mountains. Midland to Alpine to Presidio, East on170 to Terlingua. Back to Alpine. West to Ft. Davis and McDonald Observatory then back to Alpine at sunset. 470 miles. Lots of FSRD and mountains.
Alpine has only had ½ inches of rain in the last five months.
Friday April 18: Wandered back to Midland. 200 miles.
Saturday April 19: Midland to Andover Kansas. 590 miles.
Highway 170, aka River Road, from Presidio to Lajits is a must ride at least once in your lifetime! Follows the Rio Grande green slime river for 50 miles. All curves, hills, and spectacular views. Mexico is within pissing distance all the time. No fence needed here. This is one of the most remote and desolate places in the USA. Beautiful!
Don’t play road racer on this road, a little mistake and your off the road. Buzzard food.
I came across a border patrol check point. Felt like telling them I was smuggling Mexican Circus Midgets in my panniers. These guys are armed and I don’t think they would appreciate me joking around.
Lots of RUBs on mostly H-D taking guided tours. Most worried about if gas were available south of Marfa, it is. They didn’t have enough clothing for the cold Friday Morning air. Most never heard of Gerbings! Fun watching them clean and polish their H-D’s every evening.
Thumbs up-- thumbs down:
Up to the State of Texas for their excellent two lane roads with posted speed limits of 70 or 75 mph!
Up to Texas for raising the speed limit to 80 mph on their Western Interstates. Be careful I was told they will stop you at four over.
Down to Oklahoma and their I-44/Bailey Turnpike is rougher than a $15 whore. What are these folks doing with all the quarters I have been throwing at their toll booths for the last 30 years?
Up to BMW’s ESA (see above)!
Up to the Best Western at Alpine. Great place and very motorcycle friendly.
Down to the Harley rider that was revving his Hog at 10:15 pm in the parking lot of the Best Western. Pops, farts, backfires, and rumbling! All worthless noise. I would rather listen to a yapping pack of poodles. Hey you loud pipers out there, shut them down after dark, if you need a penis extender, pop a Viagra.
Down to all the dew-rag headed H-D riders and bare headed sport bike riders.
Up to those aforementioned riders if they have filled out their organ donor cards!
Down twice to the Toyota Pre-ass diver poking along at fifty something on I-35, damn he even was holding RV traffic. FYI these things are a cross between a car, golf cart, and laptop. They have become the darling of the former slip-stick set. They slow race them for the bragging rights for the best m.p.g. on their forums. Mr. Hertz loaned me one these torpedo-turds when I was in Phoenix. Actually it is well built with adequate power for the city, not very good in the twisties. I drove it like I stole it and still got 51 mpg.
Up to big oil for supplying me with gas for this trip.
Up to big oil for hiring my son away from me!
Up to the three old men on Goldwing trikes in Marfa. When they got off I could see why they needed trikes, they could just barely walk. Great to see them out enjoying the last days of their lives instead letting the kids put them into an old folk’s home!
Up to Goldwings (never thought I would say that). Three of them make almost as much noise as a house plant!
Down to the little mutant deer in the Davis Mountains. Someone has done a good job in breeding these hoofed rats to jump out in front of motorcycles.
Down to local TV news everywhere. Two minutes about a snapping turtle crossing a road in Midland. Bring back the “Rockford Files” please!
Up to the presidential candidates, especially the Democrats. Makes for a lot of cannon fodder for late night comedians.
Up to Texas for harnessing wind power, big time. There might even be enough of them to slow the rotation of the earth!
Down to the politicians of Kansas for discouraging and/or prohibiting wind power development in one of the windiest places in the USA, the Flint Hills. Towers might muck up the view of our scenery. Who comes to Kansas for the scenery anyway? Please do not answer this as it has been beat to death over at IBMWR.
Up times two to Paul and Voni for me inviting for a stop and chat. Never met them before in my life. Kind of risky inviting a totally pazzo cowboy like me into your home. “Norris is coming, better lock and load!”
I am blessed in that I am able to enjoy most any road. A straight and flat stretch of road, be it lined with wheat, corn, mesquite, or dirt, is just fine by me. Curves, hills, mountains, bring them on. I enjoy the Interstates, two lanes, any day I can ride is a good ride.
Seems like everywhere that I ride in cattle and ranch country I have been there before with my Dad. One of us at the controls of his Cessna. Much of where I rode last week I have flown over many times before. It’s a privilege to go back and ride this country on a motorcycle.
I would like to dedicate this ride to my father Les Cooper (1918-2006) cattle trader extraordinaire!
Norris Cooper Andover Kansas USA