Auke Koopman Memorial Ride June 18-19 2020

The Bigfella

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June 18th will be the second anniversary of the death of one of the legends of the Northern Thailand / Laos motorcycling community.

To quote Bob Kelly, who said Auke "was instrumental not only in forming Ride Asia but also producing some of the best mappings of Northern Thailand and Laos we are ever likely to see, his kindness and willingness to help others was something we all could take a lesson from." Many of us miss him dearly.

The first trip (of many) that I did with Auke was the Elephant Trail - in Auke's old Toyota truck. We were accompanied, if my memory serves me correctly, by Gary Deeks, riding a Honda Wave. A group of us have decided to re-create that trip and I will be riding a Honda Wave. We have other Waves and scooters joining us. We may take a support truck if interest is strong. At the least, we will position it in Wat Chan.

We will be leaving Rider's Corner at 8:30am on June 18 - headed for Wat Chan. The ride will split at Wat Chan - with the Waves going via the Elephant Trail. A few people have expressed interest in doing the ride on sealed roads... and they will peel off onto the 1265 and go via Pai. That's a longer route - 304 km rather than the direct Elephant Trail route that is 226 km. It's not a race - so whoever gets to Mae Hong Son will buy the first round of toasts to Auke.

Who's in?

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Direct route

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Via Pai

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GPX files are available for those attending the ride. Please register your interest if coming.
 

The Bigfella

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Excellent mate - what bike are you taking?
 

2wheels

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Auke at our Phayao meeting with Bob and Auke's son to discuss Ride Asia transfer of ownership.
 

The Bigfella

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I'll see your green softdrink and raise you a jug

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as for the ride.... I'd suggest the Cub or the CRF. I rode it in August 2012 and the red clay saw me drop it - as did Neil (twice) on his airhead BMW with knobbies.

I've just ordered a pair of knobbies for the Wave. Hope they get here in time.
 

The Bigfella

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Things are shaping up. We've got quite a selection of different machinery making the ride. Waves, CRFs, 500Xs, and, ahem, 4x4s. Most seem to be keen on the Elephant Trail, but there's definitely a contingent doing the via Pai option.

The Elephant Trail is one of my favourites

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BigEnso

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Looks like a great ride. Wish I had time to get the new Wave kitted out and broken in. On my list for next year.

David
 

The Bigfella

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Well, this ride would go a long way towards breaking it in.... especially if the forecast rain over the next few days eventuates.

I've got the tyres on my old Wave - but they are problematic. It seems there's two versions of the Camel offroad tyres.... and these are the more aggressive of the two

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We've only ridden it a couple of kilometers so far, and half a dozen guys have been around the block on it. It's universally been described as the most evil handling bike any of them have ever ridden. If you don't maintain firm pressure on the bars, they feel as if they're going to rotate - fast. The shop that fitted them put in 30psi, which we've dropped to 14 for an immediate improvement. I'm going to run it down to the CM Bikers shop shortly, see what they can do.

The riders list is growing - as is the variety of bikes. Grace is riding my Lifan Cross.

Oh, and the 4x4 driver has promised to bring it equipped with a fridge full of the necessaries.
 

BigEnso

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Those knobbies are a lot more aggressive than the ones that Colin put on. Has a very different tread. Attached links show what he used. Also a link to the tire on Lazada.




 

oldbloke

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I would be in, but I'm stuck here in Oz 'til god-knows-when. Maybe next year. I suspect Thailand will let me in before the Oz government lets me out! Have a good ride.
 

The Bigfella

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Its not looking good for international travel... I was supposed to be in Oz for a few weeks around now. That's not happening.

Meanwhile... prep for the ride continues. The old Wave S - which dates from 2001 has a new sparkplug, air filter and oil. We tried to buy a new speedo - as the fuel guage / odometer had melted. Nope - over 2,000 baht, which is over 2,000 baht more than the old scoot cost me (it came free with a DRZ.... and it even has a green book).

I've found more tyres. Two trail fronts and another knobby rear. I'll run both my Waves now - the other one being about a year old. I'm not sure Deere's overly happy about that.... but hey, he gets paid to ride.

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We tried hard to fit the lightweight, straight through exhaust for the ride - it's impossibly light weight compared to the stock muffler... but we encountered some fitment problems. Another time maybe.

One snag still... we need some more volunteers for our food for the needy / homeless program. We've been prepping and delivering 170 - 200 meals a day for the last couple of months for the people in trouble. It takes around 5 or 6 riders each night to get the food out to the people. A couple have been found, but we need more for Thursday night and maybe Friday night depending on our return time.

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If anyone can help in Chiang Mai on Thursday or Friday, please PM me. It's only a 30 minute task. Each day 5:50pm to 6:20pm usually sees it done
 

The Bigfella

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Getting closer. Final bookings for rooms etc to be made today. To confirm - there's three main routes being taken by participants (with plenty of variations on same if you want - and Auke will have mapped all of those):

The Why (?) Route - 107, 1095 - Chiang Mai to Mae Hong Son via Pai on the "front" road - roughly 234 km and not too bad at the moment, given the absence of silver buses.

The Back Way - 121, 1265, 1349, 1265, 1095 - Chiang Mai to Mae Hong Son via Samoeng, Wat Chan, Pai... all on bitumen, great ride, 304 km. Our preferred way via the black stuff.

Auke's Way. - 121, 1265, 1349, Elephant Trail - Chiang Mai to Mae Hong Son via Samoeng, Wat Chan and the Elephant Trail - 226 km and far more interesting

Here's a couple of us on Auke's Way last year. Hopefully Huey will send down a bit more rain between now and Thursday to make it interesting. That Yammie Exciter in this pic is on street tyres, btw

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It's not too bad, by the way.... neither CRF on that ride went down and the scenery is fantastic.

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Unless I'm mistaken, we've got the following riders:

Lachie & Ow - 500X
Jo Full - Honda XL or CRF
Matt & Sekorn & friend - 4x4 - carrying the beer, Auke's Way
Len - Dream
Deere - Wave
Ian - Wave
Grace -Lifan
Albert - Vulcan 900
Andrea - Vulcan 650
Paul - 500X
Ron - CRF
Eddie & Joy - ?
Malcolm (tbc) - 500X?
David (tbc) - Africa Twin

Any more? We're finalising accommodation today - so let us know
 

2wheels

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However;

" The following provinces are covered by the flood warning:

North: Mae Hong Son, Chiang Mai, .......... "


Could be a fun ride!
 

The Bigfella

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KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
We're planning on a fun ride. We've sure got enough booze going.....

A few extras coming. Gordon called in and said he's coming, Mark & Bo are coming. The only withdrawal I've heard of is Eddie.

Let's go folks.
 
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