WR250R 4000-km review
WR250R Stage 1
WRing about in Wales
WR250R ready for the desert
Morocco trip report, 1–9
I tried to find it a couple of years ago with a group, but failed. We did it coming down in 2013 – a spectacular afternoon’s ride up MH14 and down MH15.
Glad I left the Husky Terra at the auberge on that occasion and borrowed a Tornado.It’s heating up again – my body thermometer doesn’t know if it’s coming or going.
My Hyperpro suspension has softened a bit too, and I found my PLA (preload knob) was close to max.
I emailed Bas at HP and he suggested not upping the low speed comp (also now on max) but cranking up the rebound which I do in the shade of a palm. Who’d have known (turned out later they’d spec’d a way too soft spring for my weight, despite asking)
Those carpets are actually pretty heavy and, annoyingly, I filled right up at Agdz, instead of just a couple of litres to get me over. I’ll feel that extra weight on the hill.
Back home, I’ll screw the hydraulic PLA ring down on the shock body a bit and return the comp settings back to medium. With 4 settings it’s easy to get baffled by a high-end shock unless you RTFM.
But they sure do make a difference. My WR rides like my old 650X – there must be something to this progressive spring theory.With a hot back wind from the south, it’s a tough, 2500-foot climb over 10kms to this pass.
The bike grinds up in 1st and occasionally 2nd, and in places the exposure gets a little alarming.
I stop into the wind a couple of times to cool the motor and calm the nerves.Luckily, round the corner the track keeps its elevation along a saddle…
I last did it 5 years ago on an F650GS (above) and a mate on a TTR. Now it’s becoming another abandoned track suited to light bikes looking for a challenge. F ‘650’ was a great bike; I wish they (or anyone) would make a light, 500cc version.Then, a few km on I suddenly join a wide, graded track. That wasn’t here last time.What a relief! I can finally relax for a bit. I’m all for off-roading, but that climb was a bit gnarly.
Surely they’re not building a road to the few hamlets up here?
More probably it’s another haul road put in by prospectors to extract Jebel Sarhro’s gold and other minerals.Down in this basin I follow the haul road skirting a village, but it has yet to breach the ridge. Lots of trucks, rock hammers and dead ends leading to quarries.
With the Garmin map I work my way back to the old village track, get over an antenna pass and carry on north.
It’s actually a very nice track, and I realise why. After storms, work parties from the villages re-cover bare stony sections with sand and gravel to smooth it over and spare the van transporters a hammering. Only useful village tracks get this sort of maintenance.
But as I reach the N10, before I’m even in neutral, I’m set upon by a teenager demanding money. The N10 is on what I call the Tourist Axis: Marrakech; Ouarzazate; Todra (do me a favour!); Erfoud; Merzouga (Chebbi), with branches down to Mhamid and up to Imilchil. A few years ago at Tinerhir there was a scam where they let fuel pumps run without actually dispensing fuel. (Harder to pull off on a bike with a translucent tank).
I ignore the rude boy and he goes back to work at the blacksmith nearby.
Keep off these axes and you’ll find another Morocco of genuine, friendly people.
There a Ziz nearby – lunch is 40d, a bit more than normal, and a bloke points me in the wrong direction for the toilet. Ya got me! [dickhead].