First, warm greetings to all.
I'm 65 and in good shape, my wife is 45 and also in very good physical condition.
I rode motos since 16 yo, until around 50yo, all street bikes; Triumph tiger cub, Triumph mod. 21 I think, the 350cc "courier" with the big rear fender, Triumph Tiger, BSA Gold Star (a former flat track bike) Ducati 250, BMW 250 single, BMW R100RT and R100RS and the list goes on...Then I got away from it for 13 years. Two years ago, we became full time RVrs, living in a 34 ft. 5th. wheel pulled by a one ton Dodge dually. I thought a small bike would be nice to have as a second means of transportation and something that I could ride on dirt roads and maybe go fishing or something, so bought an '09 Kawasaki Sherpa new from the show room. Made the mistake
of letting Melanie ride it. (something she had always wanted to do and her parents wouldn't let her) Long story short "Honey, you need to get a bike of your own so we can ride together". A couple weeks later, I bought an '07 DRZ 400SM that the owner had converted to off road with larger wheels/tires, in excellent condition. Last Summer, we were in Buffalo, Wy, and rode a lot in the Big Horn Mountains. (Mind you, we're bothe new to "off road" even though I have a lot of years of riding experience) Last March, we arrived in Moab, UT and began to explore the off road ridiing here (unbelieveable). We've fallen a few times, mostly in deep sand. Once on 7 mile rim trail, which is rated a 5 for jeeps, due to a wrong turn on my part....that was on rocks, big ones. No bodily injuries....some minor stuff to my bike...mirror, turn signal, etc. However, our off-road skills have improved a great deal, so it was worth it......Now to my reason for posting:
As we've been doing all this over the past two years, we've felt confined byf the bikes we own. Not enough range (100 miles before hitting reserve) Not very comfortable, not enough speed for safe/comfortable highway travel etc.
So, we've decided to go for bikes with more pavement orientation, but still with a nod toward some mild offroad work, given the proper tires, etc. We're looking hard at the Versys, the Vstrom and the KLR.
We would very much appreciate any help/opinions from those on the forum re: what might be our best choice and why. By the way, our current bikes will be for sale soon, we'll be in the Phoenix area by early October. Anyone interested, please don't hesitate to contact us. Thanks to everyone!