A good year (almost) on the Vee - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-26-2009, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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A good year (almost) on the Vee

I got the bike in early February and now, with 16,000 miles on it, I couldn't be happier with my choice. When I first picked it up, I wondered if I'd ever like it as much as my Ninja - no worries about that now! It's an incredible bike that really lives up to its 'versatile' billing. Even if I could, I doubt that I'd replace it with any bike on the market today. I might add one to the stable, but KawasiMoto would still be my primary ride. I've met some great people along the way too - this forum has been an incredible resource.
I had stopped by a dealer in Asheville to pick up a WeeStrom - we had already worked out a deal that I liked and all that was left was signing the check. However, when I got there, and they brought out the paperwork, another $2,000 got added to the price that we had agreed on earlier - extended warranty and some other stuff that I hadn't asked for. I left the papers on the table and walked out. That's when I met the fellow in the photo below, known here as John from Asheville...

I hadn't gotten a good look at a Vee away from the showroom floor until I saw his and fell in love with the bike at first sight. Then one of the guys that worked there pulled up on the new green Vee (I think it's the one that Jonathon has now) and I decided that if my local dealer could make a deal on either a Vee or a Wee, I'd snap it up. I drove back to Hendersonville, walked into the DalKawa showroom and found that they had the blue Vee on the floor. It must have had my name on it, because a few minutes later the bike was mine. At the time, if they'd had the Wee I wanted on hand, I would have probably have bought it instead. They're both very good bikes of exceptional quality, but the Vee was there, so... I still wish that I could have gotten one of the red models, but that's a small point.
Good times aplenty were in store...
My first mods were the Happy Trails panniers, along with crash bars, skid plate, a fender extender, and an Ermax hugger for the rear. A bit later, I added Distanzias front and rear - great tires, but I've switched over to a Metzler on the rear now and seem to be getting a lot better mileage out of it.
Maybe it was just my style of riding (lots of dirt roads, often at fairly high speeds) but the stock tires really sucked. The rear was slick at 2500 miles, and the front went soon after. The Distanzias were much better, but the rear still went in a few thousand miles.

Below is a shot of the green Vee that Jonathon got not long after I got mine.

Next a shot of 3 Vees - Jon's on the left, Neil's red one in the center, and KawasiMoto on the right.

There was a trip to the ADV rendezvous near Del Rio, TN in May-

A Vee gathering in Tellico Plains, TN in June - the best group event that I've attended so far, with a terrific group of riders in attendance:

A great weekend camping trip/ride to Virginia on the Blue Ridge Parkway to camp at Willville Moto Campground near the Meadows of Dan:

Several weekend camping trips to the Blue Ridge Motorcycle Camp in Pisgah National Forest across 'the hill' from home:

Lots of daily loops in the mountains near home:

Cool fall rides on the Parkway to both the Smokies and Virginia:

And of course, lots of trips to the Dragon...

That's Karen on her 600 Yamahammer, riding the Buffalo Shoals Rd. near Lake Lure, behind me below:

And Karen and Al checking out the view from near Bat Cave:

We even mingled with the Harley riders over at the Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley a few weeks ago...

I wanted to get in one last 'destination' ride before year's end, so over the Thanksgiving holidays, I headed down to Fripp Island, just north of Savannah, Georgia and east of the Parris Island Marine Base near Beaufort, SC (where the Big Chill was filmed.) I froze my butt off getting out of the mountains through thick fog and low 30s temps, but once south of Columbia, SC, the sun came out and the rest of the backroads ride through the swamps and farm land was warm and comfortable. I'm not too happy when I'm out of sight of the mountains, but a few days on the coast was a welcome change at this time of the year. While I enjoyed sunny days on the coast, it was snowy and cold back home. Blasting through the Low Country on arrow-straight roads, lined with giant oaks draped in Spanish moss - not a bad trade-off for a few days.
Beaufort is one of the prettiest towns anywhere along the southeastern coast of America. It's an old town and has a lot of big, sprawling homes that date back nearly 200 years.

It's been a really good year and here's wishing all of y'all the same for 2010!


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Don't you think that it's a ^%#$&# shame that Hunter S. Thompson wasn't an adventure rider? Imagine the ride reports...!

Last edited by VeeWNC; 12-27-2009 at 11:14 AM.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-26-2009, 07:54 PM
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I know I won't get that many miles (or even kilometers) on my Versys next year, but I hope to get as much enjoyments as you have had in 2009.

My V is winterized, so I went cross country skiing under a stunning blue ski, but many people had their bikes out.

Lets hope all our dreams come true in 2010.

Although I have had Miss Jaffa (Burnt Orange 2007 Versys) for a while, I still have a lot to learn.

"The happiest people donít have the best of everything, they just make the best of everything."
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-26-2009, 07:55 PM
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Very nice year in review...

Happy New Year!

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-26-2009, 08:02 PM
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great pictures

You really seem to enjoy your rides. Thanks for the great pictures
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-26-2009, 11:17 PM
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That was excellent. You are a true moto ambassador.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-27-2009, 09:31 AM
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I truly liked the reveiw, though I didn't quite achieve as many miles, got mine in april and have 9700 miles, I enjoyed the year I had with my Vee as much as you did with yours. I am so looking forward to the many adventures the new year will bring to me and my Vee. I wish all of you A very good 2010.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-27-2009, 09:46 AM
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Excellent Post, Review and Pictures!

As a realtively new (used) owner I hope to get mine out and about more in 2010.

Happy New Year.

John in AZ
'08 Versys
'11 Victory Cross Roads

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-28-2009, 11:54 AM
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Cool photos! You had a nice season.


Last edited by Jacokawa; 12-29-2009 at 06:19 AM.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-30-2009, 03:52 PM
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Hey VeeWNC... thanks heaps for sharing some GREAT photos and your story too! really neat when folk do this... it makes our world alot more enjoyable and alot smaller with this thing called the "Net"

Happy New Year to you and one and All.... enjoy your 'V' it to the MAX!!!!

catchya when - until then... Andreas
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-30-2009, 04:21 PM
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Thanks dude for sharing your fantastic photos with us....I enjoyed your v almost as much as you did...thanks.
Keep taking the pics and hope to run across you one day on the road....safe riding you all for 2010!
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-30-2009, 04:27 PM
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Excellent year in review post !!!

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-31-2009, 12:39 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everybody!

I owe a lot of thanks to the folks on the forum for much of the fun that I've had on the Vee this year. Neil turned me on to the seat mod that made the ride so much more comfortable, and also suggested the Distanzias that made the bike a lot more fun on dirt roads. Mountainrider had a photo of his Vee with Happy Trails panniers mounted, so I got some of those too. They're great! The step by step info about tire changes and a dozen other maintenance chores is many times better than anything that the factory provides. Got a problem with your ride? Somebody here will have the solution. It's a great community.

I'm hoping that the crew that met up over in Tellico Plains this year can make it to this year's get-together - that's the most Vees that I've seen in one place since I got mine.

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Don't you think that it's a ^%#$&# shame that Hunter S. Thompson wasn't an adventure rider? Imagine the ride reports...!
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