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Thread: 2- Q's re: riding the Blue Ridge Mountain trail and is '96 r1100rs good for long trip

  1. #1

    2- Q's re: riding the Blue Ridge Mountain trail and is '96 r1100rs good for long trip

    Hi Y'all
    I'm from Toronto, Canada and in my 50's and I presently own a pretty beat-up '96 rll00rs. I don't know how it should really actually feel on the road. To me it seems heavy when turning. So I am wondering if the R100rs is really the kind of bike that people feel comfortable driving on a 1500 mile trip.
    Is it? I did a four hour ride (my longest so far) and even with little breaks, my ass was sore.
    Thoughts?

    Secondly - for a trip down the Blue Ridge Mountains - should I just get on my bike and get down there with my tent? Or is it a trip I should really plan out my stops?
    Like.. Is it just a go-and-do kind of trip or is it one where I should plan all kinds of sights to see and stops to make etc.

    Thanks for your input.
    owner of '86 k75C since August 2014 and since June of 2015 - a '95 r1100rs

  2. #2
    Registered User
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    Blue Ridge

    Can't help you on the first part of your post, know nothing about the bike you have.

    But, on the second part, there is so much to see and do in this area. I live in Hiaswassee, GA, about an hour south of the Dragon. Besides the Dragon, there is the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Cherohala Skyway, a ride on US129 over Blood Mountain just to list a few. This is motorcycle heaven here.
    Mary
    2007 R1200RT, gone
    2009 R1200RT, gone
    2014 R1200RTW, GREAT

  3. #3
    Fortes fortuna iuvat
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    130
    Can't help you with your bike's steering or comfort as I'm not familiar with the model. I have done Shenandoah and the BRP twice but on GSA. There are plenty of scenic lookouts to pull over at but you generally need to get off the parkway to find fuel. There are a number of campgrounds along the parkway and more off of it. I have never reserved a site in advance but have traveled it on weekdays when traffic is generally lighter. Speeds are not fast (45 mph if I remember) and enforcement can be high in some areas. Watch out for wildlife on the roadway early morning and evenings and deer watchers who don't seem to mind stopping on the roadway to gawk.

    It will take you about 3 days to do its length (BRP is about 460 miles and Shenandoah 110 miles) with the more spectacular views found in NC.

    Park link here: https://www.nps.gov/blri/index.htm

    Happy trails.

  4. #4
    Registered User Rinty's Avatar
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    Jim:

    An R1100RS can easily do long distances, and the BMW seat is supposed to make your seat sore.

    I would have a BMW specialist do a careful service of your bike, and ride it, before you set out on your journey.

    Have fun.
    Rinty

    "When you don't know where you're going, any road will get you there."

  5. #5
    MOA #24991 Pauls1150's Avatar
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    I liked my neighbor's R1100RS a lot more than my 1150RS, except for the power difference. The adjustable handlebars fit me great, and I was very disappointed to see the 1150s no longer had that. The neighbor's bike also had a sheepskin seat cover - improved the comfort factor by bunches!
    If it seems heavy, first things to look at are tire pressures (so many people have that too low) and tire type (different brands have different profiles), and suspension: if you still have the stock shocks, you're overdue for an upgrade.

  6. #6

    Thanks for the responses

    Thanks, Elgin Mary - I have a list of destinations now - amazing

    Fortes fortuna iuvat - Thanks for the overview and the link - too kind.

    Rinty - there is a guy who owns a shop who, I was told, has the same model of bike as me. The only thing is, he is so far away I would have to stay over if my bike needed work. But c'est la vie! I have booked an appointment. Thanks

    Pauls1150 - I will check the tire pressure. Like a goof, I just look at the tire. I had the stock shocks rebuilt - because I am still not sure this bike is the bike I want to invest thousands on. I will try the sheepskin cover.

    Thanks all. 'ppreciate it.
    Jim in Toronto
    owner of '86 k75C since August 2014 and since June of 2015 - a '95 r1100rs

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by jimnto View Post
    Hi Y'all
    I'm from Toronto, Canada and in my 50's and I presently own a pretty beat-up '96 rll00rs. I don't know how it should really actually feel on the road. To me it seems heavy when turning. So I am wondering if the R100rs is really the kind of bike that people feel comfortable driving on a 1500 mile trip.
    Is it? I did a four hour ride (my longest so far) and even with little breaks, my ass was sore.
    Thoughts?
    You write "R1100rs" and "R100rs" - both the oilhead (former) and the airhead (latter) have a forward-leaning riding position and of the two, I would judge the airhead less comfortable to ride. Typically for me when riding these models, fatigue sets in to the wrists and shoulders.

    For a quick and easy riding comfort fix, check out the Airhawk and Sheepskin saddle pads. There is also a great option from Walmart, super cheap and works pretty well. I use these on my BMW dirt bikes.


    Secondly - for a trip down the Blue Ridge Mountains - should I just get on my bike and get down there with my tent? Or is it a trip I should really plan out my stops?
    Like.. Is it just a go-and-do kind of trip or is it one where I should plan all kinds of sights to see and stops to make etc.

    Thanks for your input.
    There are a number of National Park campgrounds right on the parkway, but there are a TON of really nice places ride just down the hill off the Parkway, many times along most excellent twisty roads. For instance, check out the Willville MC Campground in Meadows of Dan, VA, High Country Cycle Camp near Ferguson, NC and the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Campground in Cruso, NC.

    There are many more. About 20 years ago I helped our members compile a web page of these MC campgrounds. But I can't find that on our site any more.

    Have a great ride!

    Ian

    ps => some of the best riding is the roads leading to/from the parkway...
    Go soothingly through the grease mud, as there lurks the skid demon.
    __________________________________________________ ________________________________
    '67 Trail 90 || '86 R80 G/SPD+ || '97 F650ST || '00 1150 GS || '06 HP2e || '07 Xchallenge || '14 Grom

  8. #8
    Registered User jsouth's Avatar
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    I have a 2000 R1100RS which I have personally put 32,000 miles on, and it is the most comfortable long-distance bike I have owned. It is definitely heavier steering than a small bike or a crotch rocket, but it has luggage and handles pretty well for a big bike. Many (at least half) of my miles have been in the Rockies and the Ozarks -- very twisty and fun.

    I tend to take a break every hour of riding to take care of nature's necessities and stretch my legs. Doing that I have easily put in long days. My dad at 78 still rides his R1100RS and we still take tours of 1500-2000 miles.

    Caveat -- investigate and follow the "Yoda riding position." Details in threads here on the forum. The RS is not a sit up bike, but slightly forward inclined. DON'T put the weight on your wrists and hands. Keep your body core engaged to keep weight off the hands. Wind helps hold you up. When you do that, it is GREAT for your lower back.

    I would not trade my RS -- it's reliable and fun to ride. Regular maintenance and it will be a long-lived bike, too. Legendary BMW rider Voni (and wife of Paul Glaves, extraordinary contributor here, mechanic, and rider) has one with over 250K miles on it.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsouth View Post
    I have a 2000 R1100RS which I have personally put 32,000 miles on, and it is the most comfortable long-distance bike I have owned. It is definitely heavier steering than a small bike or a crotch rocket, but it has luggage and handles pretty well for a big bike. Many (at least half) of my miles have been in the Rockies and the Ozarks -- very twisty and fun.

    I tend to take a break every hour of riding to take care of nature's necessities and stretch my legs. Doing that I have easily put in long days. My dad at 78 still rides his R1100RS and we still take tours of 1500-2000 miles.

    Caveat -- investigate and follow the "Yoda riding position." Details in threads here on the forum. The RS is not a sit up bike, but slightly forward inclined. DON'T put the weight on your wrists and hands. Keep your body core engaged to keep weight off the hands. Wind helps hold you up. When you do that, it is GREAT for your lower back.

    I would not trade my RS -- it's reliable and fun to ride. Regular maintenance and it will be a long-lived bike, too. Legendary BMW rider Voni (and wife of Paul Glaves, extraordinary contributor here, mechanic, and rider) has one with over 250K miles on it.
    Ummmm, Voni's Big Red now has well over 375,000 miles on it. Yeah, I'd say it's a "reasonable choice" for putting some miles on.
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

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