Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Maryville, TN, US
Does it count if it really doesn't touch the ground?
Last week the wife, Ol' What's Her Name, and I went on an 8 day tour from Tennessee up through New England and back. The next to last day of our trip we were enjoying some of Virginia's best scenery on some back roads through the Shenandoah valley when we felt what seemed to be either something falling off the bike or trailer, or something hit the bike/trailer. The road was very hilly and curvy so I had to ride a bit further to find a safe place to stop and investigate. We descended a very steep hill with a gravel driveway at the bottom. The driveway "appeared" to be level so I chose that as my pull off. I slowed the LT to a safe speed for the gravel and pulled off the pavement. As my speed dropped below 3 mph, the ABS kicked off (as it is supposed to do) and the front wheel locked up instantly and the bike went down without warning. I tried in valiantly to hold it up but was losing the battle. I had the wife get off the bike and she did her best to keep it off the ground until I could dismount and put it back up on it's feet. The two of us did get the bike back on its feet but not without a great deal of straining and grunting. Having to pick it up in the loose gravel and uphill with the trailer attached wasn't helping anything to say the least.
The after action report will state that the "level" driveway was an optical illusion due to the steepness of the hill we just descended. The driveway was much more downhill than I would have picked under similar circumstances. Second, I should have paid more attention to the condition of the driveway. What appeared to be gravel was actually more sand and fine rock than your average run of the mill gravel driveway. While the tip-over bar and pannier didn't touch the ground, the J-Peg on the left side did make contact with the ground and severely bent the new bolts I just put on prior to leaving for the trip. So, battle damage was one bent J-Peg and more sore and strained muscles than I can count.
The good news is now that Ol' What's Her Name knows how heavy the LT really is, she is much more receptive to the new GTL which is allegedly much lighter. At least she's now authorized a look-see and test drive when they come out.
"Loud lives save pipes"
00 K1200LT (Emil) 94,840 trouble free miles. Gone, but not forgotten
02 R1150RT (Artie) 109,000 miles. Favorite bike. With me to the end.
10 K1300GT (The Phantom) 10,110 miles. Like flying a T-38 on 2 wheels. Gone.
12 K1600GTL (Johnny 5) 3,500. A great compromise between the LT and GT
A gaggle of Japanese bikes, then I woke up.