There are 10 days left until the adventure of my life begins and I thought I would take the time these ten days to write a series of articles in which to tell you everything about the gear I am taking with me.
And what else to begin with if not my trusty steed, my companion, my friend, my R1200GS Rallye. With 17000 clicks in two years under it’s belt, it’s no longer what you can call a fresh motorcycle or the latest out there. But it does, in a mad man’s mind, doing all the wrong connections, have a strong personality. For example, after exactly 2 days of me having beached him and put him through the ordeal of getting sand in all the nether regions, he decided to drop my ass in Stockholm, like the puny, disrespectful rider I was.
And it’s not just showing and not going, either. Besides, or rather, inside that sexy blue frame, there are all the bells and whistles it could have been equipped with when it was new – quickshifter, cornering ABS or the automatic preload of the suspension, just to mention a few of my favourites.
In order to make sure both me and the motorcycle stay safe, I had some extra protection added to it. First of all, the crash bars, because I think that if you own an R-series BMW and you don’t use crash bars you are a lunatic. What do you think will hit the ground first when you drop your motorcycle? The mf. engine, that’s what. Because of boxer. Therefore, the crash bars don’t really count as an optional extra.
The other piece of protective kit added to the bike was a set of BMW OEM cylinder head protectors. For me, these feel like idiot-proofing the bike, because you can drop the bike elegantly or you can drop it like an idiot, and I tend to be the latter. So, to any pesky rock in South America that thought it could lay around for millions of years, just waiting to puncture my cylinder head, screw you! I got protection.
The tires we will be using are the Mitas E07 Plus for the rear and the TKC 80 for the front. We tried to find the perfect balance for grip and longevity and came up with this rather unusual set-up. We are expecting to cover around 5000 km on and off road. We will keep you posted about how each of the tire handles what we throw at it. The two motorcycles will have a slightly different rubber configuration, as my friend decided to go for the normal E07 version of the Mitas on the rear. I chose the plus over the normal, because the normal has a band on the running center of the tire that looks like it might affect off-road grip later in the life of the tire.
For the luggage, I will be using my Mona Lisas, my proudest achievements yet, my works of art, my already sticker-laden Vario side cases. I will not extend them, because the last time I crashed on one of the extended cases, I ended up breaking the extension system. I will keep them in the lower volume configuration. The luggage will be carried in textile inner-bags. Some of the stuff that will not fit in the side cases will end up in a cheap, Louis roll bag on the pillion seat. I only took about half as much luggage as I had on my Baltic tour. And that’s a good thing. A 300 kilo motorcycle is no walk in the park to lift.
For all the small stuff, like the camera, my external battery, the passport, the wallet, I chose the SW-Motech Evo Engage tank bag. I kind of regret getting it, because it was not exactly designed for the GS tank, but all the OEM tank bags from BMW were too big and bulky for me. So, I guess i chose functionality over looks, which would kinda be a first for me.
That’s all the hardware I am taking with me. Actually, I literally ain’t taking any of this stuff with me. Everything has already arrived in South America by boat, so this is all the hardware waiting for me in a Chilean harbor.
Thanks for reading and please consider subscribing to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/motovlogro. The entire Patagonian adventure will be documented there. Until then, you can spice up your holidays with the English subtitled Baltic Tour adventure. Peace out!