About Road and Trail
Welcome to Road and Trail. My name is Randy, and I created this website to share my experiences with, knowledge of, and perspectives on, motorcycles and motorcycling. I chose the name "Road and Trail" to reflect that the website focusses on both road and trail riding from a recreational point of view (laidback and fun). Mainly I created this website because of my long interest in motorcycles and for something to do. I'll create new content as I am able to do so, including video in 2023.
Currently there are three main types of content on this website consisting of BC motorcycle rides, motorcycle reviews and motorcycle servicing, but there's also some additional content.
The BC motorcycle rides that are documented include paved (mostly) roads, dual sport / adventure and trail (dirt, off-road). There is some overlap in these ride types. For example, the dual sport / adventure rides may contain sections of pavement as well as sections that are suitable for dirt bikes. The paved road rides are predominately pavement, but some may contain short sections of good gravel road. Consider all the information when deciding if the ride is suitable for you and your bike. Often you can choose to ride just a portion of the route. I don't consider all off-pavement riding the same as offroad riding.
Although the rides that are documented on this site are all in the southern interior of British Columbia, I have ridden in other parts of BC as well as in Alberta and in a few of the north-western US states.
The bike reviews are mostly of bikes that I, or family members, own or have owned, but a few are of bikes that I have only test ridden. I make the distinction in the review.
This website replaces another motorcycle website that I created and ran for a number of years: Motor Sport Rider (motorsportrider.net). I've shut down that website; requests for that website will be redirected here.
Now, a little bit about me...
I started riding over 40 years ago. I'm a recreational rider. I ride solo quite a bit, exploring backroads, forest service roads and trails. I also enjoy riding the twisty, scenic secondary highways. I usually try to avoid the main highways. I've done a number of multi-day motorcycle trips. I also ride with family members frequently. In the past, I would often commute by motorcycle, but these days I don't ride in the city much except to get out of it.
I have owned many motorcycles over the years including dirt bikes (ex. MR175, XR200, XR200R, CRF250F), dual sport (ex. DR350S, KLX250S, DR650SE) and street (ex. 550 Seca, NT650, VFR750, V-Strom 650, ...). I (and my family) have owned others, and I have ridden many more. My current bikes are a 2010 Suzuki DR650SE and a 2022 Honda CRF250F, though I ride a DR200SE quite a bit and sometimes a CBR250RA.
I was looking forward to buying a new motorcycle this year, maybe even two, but I have been soured on the whole bike shopping experience. The inventory for the bikes I'm interested in are low (or sold-out early regionally), and the out the door prices are sky-high: MSRPs keep going up and the added fees are outrageous! One dealer wants $2090 in fees (+ tax) for a Tenere 700! I also got a quote for a KLX300: $9300! None of the dealers that I've contacted were willing to negotiate except one which was willing to take $100 off. Early in 2023, one dealer insisted on a $1000 non-refundable deposit for a bike they didn't even have in stock and couldn't guarantee an arrival date for. Used bike prices are pretty high too for the most part, and in BC we still have to pay 12% sales tax on them. Most likely I will not be buying a new motorcycle this year unless there are discounts at the end of the season.
I buy motorcycles that I want to ride and own, not solely to create content like some YouTubers do. I also don't have an unlimited budget, so I have to consider value when making a purchase and the cost of ownership. I'm not willing to pay additional dealer markup in terms of high fees even if I really want a particular motorcycle. I am willing to pay a fair price, though (MSRP + reasonable fees). For a non-current model year bike, or if it's near the end of the riding season, I expect the price to be discounted, otherwise I might as well buy the next model year. Paying high dealer fees just encourages dealers to raise their fees even more.
I perform most of the maintenance and minor repairs on my (and my family's) motorcycles, and I have done so for many years. There's a certain satisfaction in doing the work yourself, and you can save yourself quite a bit of money. A lot of the maintenance tasks are not difficult. My advice is to get the factory service manual for your motorcycle and get some decent tools, including an accurate torque wrench(s) if don't already have some. Other than taking shop classes in high school, I have no formal training in servicing vehicles. My knowledge comes mostly from experience and reading service manuals, although I've searched for and found some good information online (you have to be critical of what you see on the Internet, though).
That's it for now.
Have fun and ride safe,
Road and Trail
Green Mountain Road near Penticton, BC