First experience on a forest service road...
I wanted to share my first experience on a forest service road with a 2012 DL 650. I did some exploring Saturday after riding with a large group that met at TWoS ( Two Wheels of Suches in Suches, Ga ). On the way home I decided to do some exploring on some gravel roads and some forest service roads. The gravel roads were an absolute blast. The forest service road, not so much.
The forest service road was steep in a couple of sections and very rocky. It was mostly hard packed, so not very much loose rock, with a bit of mud here and there. I was riding on stock TrailWings and I did not air down any. I was lightly loaded, but I did have both side cases and the top case installed. I wanted to experience setup this first.
I didn't have any problems with the capability of the bike. On steep down hills in loose rock the back brake is almost useless, but the front brake worked really good. The ABS added a lot of confidence. I'm still surprised how well the bike hooks up with so little wheel spin, even when I blipped the throttle. It just goes. The mud was interesting as the bike had a mind of it's own. I anticipated that and just let it go where it wanted. The mud was the only place I really felt the weight of the bike. That might be because I didn't ride very slow. The only real issue I had was the suspension. It beat the crap out of me. The suspension, as noted by everyone else on several forums, is really harsh in the initial stroke. That is easy to fix, though.
Luckily, I got turned around by a couple of tree's across the path that I couldn't circumnavigate. I made an eight point turn and back tracked out the way I came in.
After I replace the OEM tires with something better and I upgrade the suspension I'll test again. I won't shy away from any forest service until then, though.
2012 G-Strom - White