MOAB, high altitude riding and acclimatizing
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Thread: MOAB, high altitude riding and acclimatizing

  1. #1
    Senior Member ToolmanJohn's Avatar
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    Nov 2016
    Bristol Connecticut

    MOAB, high altitude riding and acclimatizing

    I know the trip is done. But for any others avidly reading about the trip and camping, and hoping they can make this trip in the future (like me), I have a couple words of advice. Hydration. Drink much more than you would normally drink because at higher altitudes and the dry desert air, this can lead to sickness. I suffered a bit the first time I mountain bikes in Moab back in 2008. The first two days I was miserable within an hour of the beginning of the morning rides. By day three I had followed advice and drank until waterlogged. Frequent trips to the bathroom at night, but the following days were so much better.

    The bike ride for day 4 started in Hazard County at 9000+ feet, and even though it was descending to the Colorado River on the Porcupine Rim trail system, I had a headache for about 1-2 hours of the 4 hours ride. Just not used to that elevation difference from Connecticut. Had thought I drank plenty and ate properly, but just not acclimatized to the elevation in a couple days.

    I expect that motorcycle rides are much the same, I have become dehydrated on long trail rides over 3 hours in duration, because of the fun and just forget to keep drinking. It's when leg cramps start kicking in I remember, but it's too late by then, and I have to drink like a fish and tough out bad cramps in hamstrings and inside the thighs (the WORST!!).

    Year 2009 was MUCH better, and 2010 we rode in the Dixie National Forest, Brianhead Mountain, Blowhard Mountain (STEEP trails!!) and surrounding area. In August, and it was NOT hot, but it was high. What a great trip, but again I suffered at day 4 from fatigue/dehydration, the worst in my life, I have never walked so much during a bike ride LOL!!

    Totally think that this year is MY year for trips. Plans for riding again in Canada (Calabogie Ontario), trying the Hatfield McCoy trails in West Virginia, and MAYBE get to ride some of Colorado, but that trip will take some tinkering with vacation days and work schedule.
    2017 Beta Xtrainer 300 - Suspension modified for height
    2013 Yamaha TW200 (Sold but not forgotten, possibly in the future when space permits)
    2007 Kawasaki Ninja 650R (sold) Fun for a year, then mega garage DUST collector
    1985 Honda CB650SC Nighthawk (sold) FUN - but became a dust collector
    1984 Honda CB450SC Nighthawk (sold) Primary transportation for almost 5 years
    Various other 2 wheel rolling junk not worthy of mention....

  2. #2
    Senior Member Fred's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
    Turtle Wrangling the Sierras
    Good advice. Many of us at Moab used CamelBack style water bladders plus packed back-up beverages. I usually had 3 or 4 liters for a day's ride.
    2003 TW200 "Betty Boop"
    2006 TW200 "Nibbler", a.k.a. “Mr.Gizmo"
    Hidden Content All Things Considered I’ld Rather Be Motorcycling

  3. #3
    Senior Member Sthrnromr's Avatar
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    Oct 2018
    Rural, South Carolina
    Quote Originally Posted by Fred View Post
    Good advice. Many of us at Moab used CamelBack style water bladders plus packed back-up beverages. I usually had 3 or 4 liters for a day's ride.
    Smart. ~3+ liters is my target to bring when in Moab, and I tolerate heat well.
    ToolmanJohn and jtomelliott49 like this.
    TW200 - The Goat
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    Way too many past bikes and builds to list. I won't bore you. Questions? Just ask.

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