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Thread: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

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    Should Get Out More Weeksy's Avatar
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    Default Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?


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    Was having a debate recently regarding off-roading stuff.

    Living where I do there's plenty of available lanes/trails etc so not a massive issue there.... but I'm often quite time-poor, so I don't forsee many times where I'd get 5-6 hours out. Most of the rides I read about are all day epics, starting early, finishing late afternoon. But they're just not something I could realistically get to manage very often.

    I'm not in some ways time-poor, but I'm certainly limited due to family stuff that means I'd get an hour >90 mins without too many issues (riding time, not cleaning/prep) but more than that, would be tough.

    There's also the MX track within walking distance from my place, but not sure an Enduro like a WR250F would be suited around there ? but that's another debate I guess.

    I guess the question is, if you don't include dressing/faffing time, is an hour here and there really worth it ?

    Is off-road a solo activity for people or more a lads day out type thing ?

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    Really Bored tafflade's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    IME, while there's absolutely no reason why you couldn't ride for 90 minutes, practically I would never ride for any less than 1/2 a day, but more often it would be a full day and I'd be cleaning the bike in the dark. It made no difference if that was in Somerset (where there's loads of road work to do just to ride relatively short lanes) or South Wales (where we used to ride in the general area where BPW is now and so bugger all road work)

    I guess it could come down to how clean you must make the bike after everytime you ride it, if it's a 2 hour clean process then no, 90 mins is not worth it. (IMO)

    I used my KTM400EXC on MX tracks a few times, and see no reason why something like the WR would struggle in the hands of a (relative) novice to MX.


    edit - forgot the last question.

    nope, not a solo activity. think about how quickly things go wrong on a mtb, now double + the speed and the crashes get bigger and more painful. you could be out there for days until someone finds you


    well, not really days but you get the picture

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    Should Get Out More Julian_Boolean's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    I used to go out for a couple of hours quite regularly but found it got boring riding the same trails, you can ride solo but be bloody careful and buy a light bike that you can get off you easily, a spade to dig the bike out of the mud is useful as well if you ride solo.

    WR250F will be fine round an MX track, look at the shite people used to ride in the 70s round MX tracks,

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    Thanks guys. I don't want to do this and then end up not using the bike which in honesty I think is a danger. Of course I could do the TRF type thing but as my daytime rides would be sort of 11am and the weekends could be varied I'm doubting it would fit in much with other people if I went for that.

    May end up being more of a thought than a reality until my boy gets older and we both do it.

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    Used to be possible when I had my bike at my fathers farm right on the border of the fells, just hop on and go for a blat about.
    If it involves vans/trailers and so on then likely not.

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    Should Get Out More KungFooBob's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    I used to only go out for an hour or two, in fact I never really did an all day trip as I used to ride to the trails and back, I also used to live within 15mins ride of a proper MX track that you could ride round all day for 10.... yeah the proper bikes and skilled riders used to rape me, but it was a laugh and my KDX220R would just about keep up with the kids on KX80's.

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    Even with the number of trails around you I think you'd get bored with short rides.

    In your shoes I'd view it as an addition or alternative to trackdays, once a month sort of thing. There are mid-week rideouts but as you've noted most are an all-day affairs. I ride once a month, occasionally twice, usually on a saturday.

    As has been said, it a good hour or so of cleaning and maintenance after each ride unless its completely dry so short rides would be a pain.

    The MX track near you is only open sundays, the track surface is ridgeway clay and we both know what thats like to ride on and how it clogs wheels to the point of seizure. I did an enduro there and ended up having the bike dragged back to the pits as neither wheel would turn. Great when the ground is hard, crap when its wet.

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    Quote Originally Posted by crust View Post
    In your shoes I'd view it as an addition or alternative to trackdays, once a month sort of thing. There are mid-week rideouts but as you've noted most are an all-day affairs. I ride once a month, occasionally twice, usually on a saturday.
    .
    Saturdays are very very rarely an option for more than a few hours, Sundays the same. My trackdays are midweek usually as easier.

    Mid week all dayers I could mange, but only so many due to work.

    It's not sounding good is it

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    Should Get Out More Gregor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    I'll only do a couple of hours out on my own these days.Often unplanned and that's the beauty of having a dual purpose bike.

    I've got a lot of lanes close by and will often divert on the way home from work in the summer.

    I'm commuting on the thing through winter so a good layer of filth doesn't bother me,cleaning time zero.

    Know where you are and carry a phone,it's probably less risky than solo mtbing ....for me anyway


    Mid week is best there's less people about.

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    You sound so much like the over-analytical voice in my own head sometimes
    If you want to do it- do it! Only you can decide if it's worth it or not.

    I used to do anything from 30minutes to 4 hours on my XTZ as it was all I could fit in.
    I did no group stuff at all but I did used to scare myself about getting pinned under it somewhere. Knowing the Plain and various bits of Wiltshire, Dorset and Hampshire as well as I do, I'd often string together 50-100 miles of Byways with very little road work.
    I braved one of the many MX/mini bike/MTB play areas on the Plain one day and did pin myself under a foot peg!! Luckily, I freed myself after a couple of minutes but it proved that discretion was the better part of valour!
    I'd have been much happier doing it on a smaller Enduro I'm sure.

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    Should Get Out More Tomcat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    A few thoughts.

    Depending on the company and the routes I don't always do a full day. If I'm getting knackered or I've only got time for a part day I'll cut and run early. Nobody minds (as long as you tell the run leader) and in fact it's not unusual for people to do that.

    Riding alone, not recommended. Get stuck under the bike or with a broken leg miles from anywhere out of phone range and you could die. It's also more fun with mates. The TRF will also take you round legal lanes so you don't risk copping a fine or having your bike impounded, and you get taken round a far better range of lanes than you're likely to find on your own. In fact give me a weekend that suits you and I'll see if we can get out with the Devon boys, the lanes down here will blow your mind

    MX tracks, you can take anything but IME the WR is too soft to do it well. My lad did an MX meeting on a WR450F and although he gave the boys on full crossers a run for their money the bike was bottoming badly on every jump.

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Crosshair View Post
    You sound so much like the over-analytical voice in my own head sometimes

    You know me mate, if I decide to so something I just get on and do it with bikes, but I do like to weigh up thoughts, options and experiences of others to give me guidance.

    All in all it's sounding like it's not really going to fit in with the time/lifestyle I have available currently... Of course there will come times when these things change, but at the moment, it's looking like I'm best sticking with my current riding plans as they are.

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    IMO, it's not worth the faff for an hour, unless you happen to life in an area where there are challenging lanes very nearby.

    When I first got my enduro bike, i would go out for an hour here and there, but i soon got bored of the same trails and spending more time suiting up and washing, then actually riding. Now I just book a day off, get the trailer out and go to a track.

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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    I really want to do some trails round my way as well, but it is hard to tell whether they are legal or not. I found this website some years ago:

    http://www.southerntrails.co.uk/

    It has a map but not a very good one. End of the day I should just go down the trails and see if anyone tries to stop me and then explain the situation if they do.

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    Should Get Out More Julian_Boolean's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can off-roading be a quick hour or so here and there realistically ?

    No, get an ordanance survey map for your area and find the ones marked as Byways Open to All Traffic, these you can ride, unless they have a sign saying you can't.
    Go to the TRF website and find someone in Kent TRF, they'll help you out. Gregor on here is a nice bloke and may also be able to help.

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