Apr
22

Giant Loop Rider: Solana Visits GL With Her Yamaha XT250, To Get Equipped For Her Summer Ride To Canada

We were working away packing orders and doing office work, when there was a knock at the door. Solana, a college instructor and Xterra race winner enjoying her first bike, had come by to get some fit questions answered. She has planned a dual sport  ride to Canada this summer and needed a packing system for her Yamaha XT250. She had found her used XT250 online, after much searching, and was happy to get a good deal on it. Believing that Giant Loop was the right answer to her packing system questions, she rolled over to visit yesterday.

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As the guys got her bike test fitted with a Coyote Saddlebag, Fandango Tank Bag Pro(both in her favorite color ORANGE)and Rogue Dry Bag, she was convinced that she had made the right choice to come to us. Thanks, Solana, for riding Giant Loop!

Apr
21

Giant Loop Rider: Tammy Rides Her First Event, 2014 Alley Sweeper, On Her Vintage Triumph, With Diablo Tank Bag And Mojavi Saddlebag

The trip to Portland for last weekend’s  Alley Sweeper, was worth a load of adventures. Especially for Tammy, since this was her first (dis)organized ride.

Arriving at the start of the ride was pretty telling, the whole street was filling with rough tire motos, of one sort or another. There were costumed riders, riders on vintage two-stroke enduros, monkey bikes and mopeds, in addition to the pile of modern dual sports and adventure bikes. It was easy for us to get staged with the van, since there weren’t many cars parked in the area. As we finished getting ready, the street filled in with riders and motos, anticipating the announcements and rider’s meeting.

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Tammy has only been riding for a couple years and her experience is mainly riding Vintage bikes on dirt. She had been out in the woods riding a couple weekends ago, so she was ready for more. McQueen, her 1971 Triumph T100C Trophy  was kitted with Diablo Tank Bag and Mojavi Saddlebag. What she had limited experience with, was riding in city traffic and she had never ridden pavement in the rain. She was pretty nervous about the wet pavement, until I reminded her to treat it like dirt and expect a little slipping and sliding. She got the hang of wet roads quick, but she still had a sharp concern about getting into and out of car traffic, as we filtered through the streets to reach the next set of alley ways.

The alleys were as diverse as the bikers, paved, gravel, mud, grass and puddles. The alleys were surrounded by yards in every state of trim and disrepair.

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Here was one little piece of “city rock” that caused us to pause and double check McQueen’s engine case for oil leaks! Luckily, Tammy rode right through without getting dumped off, when she hit that one.

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Occasionally we saw residents, out watching the parade, or trying to instigate some contention with riders. Tam and I came across one such alley, with a few discontents waving a phone camera at us and trying to engage us. We took the high road and turned onto the street, rather that have our enjoyment interrupted with meaningless debate about access to public right-of-ways and the city permitting required to stop us from riding on “their” public road. As we got deeper into the route, there were other creative residents, parking trucks across the alley ways, preventing us from continuing through several of the designated alleys. As we had already found the need to be “flexible” with the routing, we were able to pick up the next alley, without loosing too much track.

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Tammy was tired after we had completed the sections of North route, so we decided to wrap up our participation and headed back to base. She was thrilled with excitement from completing the stages we did and she was totally beat from all the concentration and effort needed to handle her Triumph in the alleys and city traffic. The Honda XR650R, kitted with Mojavi Saddlebag, Pannier Pockets and Possibles Pouches, performed predictably for me. It was easy to spy upcoming alleys, while standing in its tall cockpit. Thankfully the Honda was not as coldblooded as usual and fired up second kick, every time. Tammy’s Triumph was easy to start all day, too, but got a bit hot after several long sections of slow muddy alley way, so it got a cool off break half way through the ride.

The guys at Sang Froid Riding Club had done a good job with their map and route plans, but they did a GREAT job on their ride Tshirt. Tammy was very happy to see such a cool Tshirt, as her first ride commemoration and bought me one too. I’ll get a proper pic of the Tshirt(thought I had one) and add it to this post.

Apr
18

Giant Loop Rider: JD Goes To The City For An Urban Enduro Ride, Portland Alley Sweeper 2014

Last year’s Alley Sweeper

Packing up the van and GL’s 2001 Honda XR650R to head over and ride the Alley Sweeper, promoted by Sang Froid Riding Club. My girl Tam will be along, riding her first rally on her ’71 Triumph Scrambler, the perfect bike for this occasion.

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Details here:
APRIL 11, 2014 BY BOHLSEN
Alley Sweeper Urban Enduro

It’s here! Your friendly neighborhood alley sweeper, a chance to explore some of Portland’s public alleyways by motorcycle.

When: meet at 9:30am Saturday, April 19

Where: N Tillamook Street, just off Interstate Ave

What? Show up for breakfast and route map/details at 9:30am. Ride is free (though we’ll have t-shirts for sale, and donations are always appreciated). Feel free to wear your Sunday best, or get creative with a costume. See you there!

After ride party host:
Fenders Moto Cafe & Brew Pub will be having a after hours party for all the Alley Sweeper riders Saturday the 19th Starts at 11 AM and ends at 11 PM. Great food and Drinks and we will have specials for everybody.
We are at
4336 SE Woodstock Blvd Portland Or. 97206

Apr
17

Giant Loop Event: Adventure Girl, Tracy Jeffries, To Lead Ladies Group On Giant Loop’s Summer Lake Hot Springs Ride

I met Tracy at a RawHyde event in 2012 and learned that there is an appetite for DIRT in all of us. Some, like Tracy, just express it better than the rest. Tracy has devoted her motorcycling skill development and riding experiences to honing her ability to roost dirt and ride big adventure bikes with the best of them. She has been a fixture at North West adventure riding rallies, supporting Touratech and Ride West BMW during events, leading GS rides, plus raising money for Riders For Health, a motorcycle based health care charity.

I am stoked to share the news that Tracy has put Giant Loop’s Summer Lake Hot Springs Overnighter on her schedule and has offered to lead the Ladies Group.  Thanks Tracy for bringing your skill and experience to our little hot springs ride.

So far, there are six ladies signed up for the event, so if you were on the fence about whether to join us, now you have another reason to get registered!

Tracy’s BMW G650X, paused for a moment to confirm that the rear tire is flat…

Apr
16

Giant Loop Racers: Cain’s Quest Race Team 7 SnoXscapes, Kirk and David, Finish On The Podium To Win $20,000, With Great Basin Saddlebags

There was a strange knock at the email door, last Christmas season.  It wasn’t the first time that a well researched and experienced long distance rider contacted Giant Loop for luggage solutions.

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Something was very different this time, since Canadian rider Kirk Hastings wasn’t outfitting a motorcycle and he wasn’t taking a trip across the Trans-Canada Trail, or riding the Haul Road to Inuvik, or traveling  south to Ushuaia. He was building a Skidoo Freeride SNOWMOBILE for cross country racing.

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Kirk had heavily researched a few vital components, for his and team mate David Price’s race machines, that he knew would give him the edge over race teams with conventional equipment. The issues he wanted to dial in were lighting, luggage and suspension. His requirements for the packing system were to carry 90 pounds of supplies and required safety gear. So, he began the search to find the best soft luggage on the market, for his race setup, and after looking at every luggage system on the planet,  Giant Loop’s packing system became that solution.  The benefits that Kirk wanted to experience were dry safety gear, loaded close to the center of his machine, in a bag that was easy to mount and remove, mounted in a way that didn’t interfere with the rider, upset the balance of the machine or overload its limited rear framework.  While we have sold plenty of Great Basin Saddlebags, Diablo Tank Bags and Bushwacker Hand Guards to motorcyclists for these very reasons, this is the first one destined for snowmobiles! The boys also found Pronghorn Straps to be very handy, keeping their gear secured tight.

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It wasn’t just any little race, either, it was the 3300KM Cain’s Quest. Cain’s Quest takes place on the eastern Canadian coastline, in the region of Labrador, Newfoundland. The week long, 22 checkpoint, two rider team race starts in Labrador City. Then, the course runs out to the coast at Cartwright, across the coastal headlands and sea inlets to Nain, then back across land to finish in Labrador City. The racers  cannot use any groomed or established trails and must navigate across the barren northlands, while dealing with extremely harsh winter conditions and carrying mandated safety equipment. Emergencies are regular and many, with 20 of the 29 teams entered ending their race with either a medical or mechanical. While a mechanical may not seem an emergency, ANY time spent with protective winter gear removed, to wrench and hammer broken bits back together, leads to frozen body parts. Frozen hands, feet and faces are the main concerns for racers, but crashing at speed has its own risks, with the constantly changing conditions, terrain and wind driven snows.

Link to some Elka Suspension test video from before the race. The Great Basin Saddlebag looks solid and stable on that machine, as it rips the 2-3ft whoops, at 65mph.  

Read the exciting wrap up to the race, in these Cain’s Quest Facebook postings! 
I am sure our friends at Baja Designs and Elka Suspension were equally impressed with Team 7 SnoXcape’s finish of the 2014 Cain’s Quest.
Great Job Kirk and David!!

Hit this link for some POV camera footage of them during one of the stages.

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Apr
15

Giant Loop News: Dale Sargent Named Independent Sales Representative For Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 18, 2013

(BEND, OR, USA) Adventure-proof packing systems innovator Giant Loop has named Dale Sargent as its independent sales representative for Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska. Sargent currently represents other top motorcycle brands, such as Bell Powersports and Klim motor and snow apparel.

Dale Sargent Giant Loop sales rep

“I’ve been on two wheels since the 305 Yamaha Big Bear days — a lot longer ago than I care to admit,” says powersports veteran Sargent. “My claim to fame is that I got to watch Evel Knievel jump at the Yakima, Washington County Fairgrounds in the late 60s.”

Sargent has been representing brands in the motorcycle and snowmobile markets for more than five years, and he was previously in the marine business as a boat dealer and as a manufacturers representative.

To schedule a Giant Loop product line dealer clinic in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri or Nebraska, contact Dale Sargent: phone 417-777-8000.

In Indiana, Ohio or Michigan, contact Ray Peabody: phone 810-923-8738.

In Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina or Tennessee, contact Chad Johnson at 931-349-5272, or Tom Hall at 336-582-4569.

In Alaska, Idaho (northern), Oregon or Washington, contact Eric Wright, 405 Moto Sales, 206-390-8396.

Giant Loop’s adventure-proof motorcycle gear packing systems are available from select international distributors, as well as from a network of premium dealers throughout the USA. Motorcycle rider-owned Giant Loop is based in Bend, Oregon. For all the details, go to www.giantloopmoto.com.

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Giant Loop® and the GL® logo are registered trademarks of Giant Loop LLC.

Apr
15

Giant Loop Rider: Charles Rides To Grand Canyon On KTM 450 EXC With Fandango Tank Bag Pro And Pannier Pouches

Got some pics via email, of our Fandango Pro Tank Bag, with Pannier Pouches attached, out on the trail. These pics were taken by Giant Loop Rider, Charles, while riding his KTM 450 EXC in the Whitmore Wash, in the Grand Canyon.

He wrote:
“We all have GL’s or we couldn’t make these trips possible. We’ve tried other options and find that having the weight placed low on the bike and close to us as possible, helps. It allows us to carry gear and have fun while doing so. We were on the bikes for a total of 4 days, around 345 miles round trip.

My set-up worked flawlessly! And let me tell you, we rode some major rough terrain! Lava rock no smaller then the size of softballs for miles! All three GL’s stayed where I put them.

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Installed easily. Stayed put thru the trip. Having the two zippers on either side was the best, as i was able to pull it off and store in my tent without pulling straps! I also was able to keep important items in one location and take it with me easily. I used map compartment as we traveled several trails we’ve never traveled. It hailed on us twice and keep all contents dry. The concealed pocket was a total bonus!!

Pannier Pouches were amazing! I put two 1.89 Liter (1 extra gallon total) containers of fuel to extend the range on my moto! Carried the weight well without any issues, plus blocked some of the unexpected arctic winds/hail that we experienced on the trip out! I’m only 5’10, so I fit really well with them. My friend sat on my bike and he’s 6’6 and he still could have used them.

One of the guys has the newer Coyote Saddle Bag with the Cinch Ring Harness and he really liked it. Seemed to be a nice feature that he used to hold extra camping gear.

All said, all four of us love using your products. We are a no frills bunch who live in So-Cal and do a lot of 3-4 day trips into some very remote/rocky locations. We are hard on gear, and don’t like things to fail. Your products continue to impress us and keep us out where we want to be! Away from everyone else.”

Thanks for sharing your great story and pics,Charles!

Apr
11

Giant Loop Review: Buckin’ Roll Tank Bag In Dirt Bike Magazine

Dirt Bike Magazine is usually on the top of our magazine pile, in the Giant Loop Library. We blogged about the Pronghorn Straps getting reviewed in their January issue. Now, in May’s issue, our all new Buckin’ Roll is getting the write up, found in their Adventure, The Goods section.

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The Buckin’ Roll tank bag packing system from Giant Loop consists of three components, which can be used individually or in any combination:  mounting harness, center tool case and Pannier Pockets. The system features water-resistant YKK zippers, Nylike webbing, reflective accents for visibility and are made in the USA.

Thanks DirtBike!

I still gander at Dirt Bike’s Feb coverage, reviewing the KTM 350EXC and Beta 450RS, having gotten a taste for Betas while in Italy last November, for Eicma. The Adventure section in that Feb issue also had an article called “DR Done Right”, about or friends at Seat Concepts rebuild of their crusty old Suzuki DR650 into a proper big-bore 790cc dual sport bike with Baja Designs Squadron. Pretty cool project and reminds me that we has one of those “vintage air-cooled” motos in the GL stable, a late 90′s Honda XR600R. Better not get too many ideas from that article…

 

Apr
10

Giant Loop Racer: Alex Sherman’s Kawasaki KX450F Takes A Hit In The Desert 100

The Desert 100 is always physically hard on the racers and their carefully prepared race bikes.  Therefore, I was, and wasn’t, shocked to hear news of GL racer Alex Sherman’s crash, while battling for a top ten position in last weekend’s event, and that it was a race ender!  A rescue helicopter is positioned on the ground and ready for the eventual emergency evacuation of an injured racer. The chopper crew is usually busy during the event, providing life saving transport to the local ER for the urgent medical needs of downed racers. Fortunately for Alex, he didn’t need any medical assistance, since he avoided injury.

His “lightly raced” 2014 Kawasaki KX450F wasn’t so lucky…

There are no rescue helicopters for injured bikes, however, and that leads to some additional suffering for the damaged machines, as they are ridden back to the pits or hauled onto the sweeper truck.

Alex’s KX450F, was one such motorcycle that was damaged to the point of no longer being race-able, during a tussle with a boulder filled dust puddle. When Alex crashed, the bike hit a hidden rock so hard, that it dented and punctured his upper fork tube, plus twisted his lower triple clamp against steering stop on the frame. As Alex rode out to the pits, the inner fork slider was hammered against the dent in the outer fork tube, hard enough to bend and damage the inner cartridge.

Here are some pics of the bike, with it’s smashed fork leg and lower triple clamp on the operating table, showing the extent of carnage the bike endured, both during and after the crash.

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Check out this awesome race footage,from his chest mounted camera, that Alex edited together:

The crash is at 15:05 in the video, doesn’t look like much…

 

 

Apr
09

Giant Loop Review: BMW Owners News Includes Siskiyou Panniers In April’s Soft Luggage Round-up

Thanks BMW Owners News, for including Giant Loop’s Siskiyou Panniers in the April issue’s soft luggage roundup!

Here is a key point made in the review:
“The Siskiyou Panniers are narrow and ride high enough to not catch on rocks, trees or bushes, when the trail gets tight. Since they are so narrow, it is easy to forget they are back there.”

 

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