I rode the BMW Great River Road Rally last weekend. The weather was perfect all weekend! By 9 pm Friday night, they had 270 riders registered.
Nine of us rode the "Great Gravel Road Ride" on Saturday. Most of the guys were on various BMW GS models, a couple guys were on big KTMs, most had off-road oriented tires, and one guy was on a vintage air head.
A couple of the guys kept commenting throughout the day - how they couldn't believe that I was on this ride! ... with a street bike! Riding on street tires!
Me and my '08 V did fine. Some of the gravel roads were graded better than others, and my Trials training didn't hurt either. We kept our speeds around 35 to 45 mph most of the time, and slowed some for deeper dirt & gravel, off camber curves and a few very steep hills. The hills and scenery were beautiful. And my bike and gear has never been dustier! [Cough, cough, hack.] I had fun riding watching for ruts, and dialing in just the right amount of throttle for conditions, and steering between "piled rows of gravel", while keeping an eye on the dust cloud of the lead group (so as not to get lost) for about 5 hours.
[FYI - My V is lowered, Michelin PR
4 tires, Yoshi 2 outlet muffler, bar-end mounted café mirrors, V-Stream windscreen with deflector, Corbin seat, lowered pegs.]
After about 125 miles, we stopped for lunch at around 2 pm. After lunch, most of us decided to take the pavement back to Soldiers Grove. There was more great scenery and twisty asphalt on the way back.