Final Day & Reflections


May 17 2014 – June 15th 2014 (2014 X Country Solo Trip) if you make to the bottom you will see some stats or you can scroll down not read this wordy post and cut to the chase. ;-)

I got a big smooch from Sierra when I arrived home…

My good luck charm came with me the entire trip and I now wear it everyday too…nice people gave this to me…really nice!

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Bike Build – Yamaha Super Ténéré XT1200Z


Yamaha Super Ténéré XT1200Z Bike Build – Touratech is celebrating the arrival of Yamaha’s new Super Ténéré XT1200Z by building a project bike. We’ve added ergonomic upgrades, bolted on the essential protection items and given it luggage solutions that enable the bike to hit the road for extended travel. Follow

JESSE LUGGAGE INSTALL & More


Here are a few pictures of Cheryl installing our Jesse Safari panniers on Cheryl’s BMW when we first got her bike in December 2009.  We are fans of the Jesse luggage system because of its lean profile and no drag effect on our bikes.  We used Jesse Odyssey panniers on the Triumph Tiger 800 XC bikes this summer as well. Again, lean profile, very innovative mounting system, sturdy and we think great looking too.  Also, the mounts do not attach to the fender at all.  They use the frame of the bike only and that is something we like too.  I have also included other farkles we have added once we got the bikes and still have them all on our bikes presently.

For the Triumph Tiger Al Jesse has made the mounts very specific for the Tiger by adding a very cool T800 detail.

***For the record the main reason we did not take the Triumph Luggage on our trip to Alaska ( I have been asked many times why) was because the mounting system for the Triumph bags is made out of plastic.

According to our “sources” the mount is right off the Triumph Sprint ST system.  Based on a type of swivel motion that allows the rear portion of the mount to move when the bike leans.  That part of the mount made us nervous not only because it is made to move with the bike but if we had dropped or crashed the Tigers we were pretty certain this part would break easily.  Can’t remember where I read an actual magazine review out of the 100’s that are out there, but I think our theory was proven when a media test rider dumped the bike in sand and the mounting system broke making it unusable. 

The back piece also hits the bags when in a lean or turn.  What I mean is it is not attached to the panniers and again like I said made to move.  With all the pounding the Tigers took up north we also were not sure if the plastic panniers would be able to take all the constant impact over time without jeopardizing the integrity of the bags.  Constant banging in the same spot we believed would eventually takes its toll on the outer shell of the Triumph panniers.  We could be wrong but for a true ADV panniers system we feel things need to be secure and attached with no ability to move.

So, in the end we are confident although we did not crash or test the Jesse mounts or bags that we made the right decision.  Until Triumph makes a true ADV durable mount for their Tiger we would not recommend their luggage system.  Again just our opinion.

Here is what our mount looks like on the Beemer

We have the 8 inch bags.  Jesse now offers the Safari in 9 inch bags which if we ever had to buy again we would actually like that extra one inch room. On the Triumph bikes the bags we had 10 inch and still managed to stay within the handle bars width wise.  Here is a pic of the bags on Cheryl’s Tiger she rode.

I do not like the idea of having luggage that is much wider than the handle bars to be honest.  Just my opinion.

Non can side is a bigger pannier.  We were able to fit all our gear, camping etc for our Cross Country Trip in 2010 in these panniers.  We also have the 45L top box.  The lid liner Jesse sells is an awesome way to utilize that space and they come with a little bracket to keep the liner in place so nothing falls down when you open and close the lids.

Here is the complete pannier system on my bike

Jesse skid plates are on both our bikes.  Not the most substantial skid plate on the market but so far so good.  We have hit quite a few boulders and other obstacles and this plate remains intact. 

Jesse offers crash bars too.  This is a picture of his first version.  Since then Jesse has added more stability to the bars at any weak points.

I have tested these bars only with laying the bike down for a snooze.  No crashes but with the weight of the bike on its side the bars did not move at all.  A little touch up paint they are as good as new.

Hard to see in this picture but if you look closely you can see more supports in the new version of the Jesse crash bars that we have on our bikes now.  I will try to get a better picture soon.

Good view of the bags when they were BRAND new.  I still have the stock tires on the bike too! :-)

Cheryl’s bike loaded with new bags

We both have the Cee Bailey shields 16 inch Euro version.  I think if we were to replace the shield we would get the 18 inch.  Both shields are still looking good despite all the crap that gets on them.  Easy to clean but are showing some wear and tear with scratches.We have also added an OEM bracket to stabilize the shield more for the bumps.

Good view of the system outdoors

Take away the four Helen Two wheels black bags on the side of our Thermarest pads and this is what we fit in our Jesse 8 inch bags for our summer 2010 Cross Country trip.  Cheryl is an amazing packer.

Adding the Denali LED lighting system to our bikes has been a HUGE benefit not only for the rider and expanded view of the road but for others to see us.  I have these on almost all the time I ride for the extra visibility and safety.

Small but powerful

Our GPS is a Garmin Zumo 660 mounted using a Tourtech system.  GPS stays on Cheryl’s bike because I suck with navigation even with a GPS. ;-)

The 2 of us enjoying a cozy dinner after a rainy ride, what else is new for us on our trip down the Oregon Coast in April of 2010.

Me in our OLD gear that would get soak in the rain and also this picture was after we rode through a mountain pass in Oregon in April and got caught in a snow storm, 2010.  We were both happy that we made it through.

So that is our set up for the Beemers.  If and when we ever get new bikes we would make sure we have all the same accessories.  Not sure if they would all be Jesse stuff but overall we are more than satisfied with his ability to make more than just great luggage!