Riding the XR650R in tight woods

Those of you that ride XR650's in heavily wooded trails, how do you rate them? Are there any of you or know anybody in their 40's or 50's that ride these in heavily wooded trails? Do you think their great or would you rather have a smaller, lighter bike? I know a Reklus auto clutch would make riding easier but my concern is, does the power output and weight of this bike wear you out?

Appreciate your inputs!

I am 47 and if I could only have 1 bike it would be the XR650. It will do anything you are up for but if you want to race your buddies through the woods on their WRs, CRFs, and EXCs you better be good. It is a big motorcycle. A buddie of mine rode it up an extream hill and after returning the bike to me his comment was, "This thing is large and in charge"

I've ridden my 650R in woods before, but prefer to ride it in more wide open terrain. It does work for the woods though, a lot of guys use them for that.

I'm 42 and have had a bunch of motorcycles in my riding days and this bike (650R) has been the most all around fun to date. If all I rode the bike in was tight woods I would buy something else but I ride my bike in just about everything so I would'nt trade it for anything. It will do the tight stuff but it is more work then a light flickable bike but when the trail opens up a bit...... :cry:

I am 54 and since Feb. of 2000 I have been riding the BRP in the tight woods all the time. It is an easy bike to ride. When you have to pick it up it is heavy but now days I rarely ever have to do that.

I do like my 525EXC in the tight woods a bit better if Im trying to keep up with the faster guys. The XR650 can really move through the trees but I would ride it for quite a while before I tried that for any distance. You need to get a feel for what the bike does. I have the rekluse Z-start auto clutch on the XR650 and wow, I love it. :cry:

Well I'm 23 so maybe I don't apply..(HeH..HeH) but I live in New England and this will be my 3rd season on the 650R. Roots, Rocks, Trees all day long, love the bike. It can turn into a handfull if you are at the bottom of a big hill or something like that. But the power and smooth cadillac feel over rocks more than makes up for it. Get one, and get in those trails.

Look at the weight of the 450s, which are about 240 lbs dry. The XR650R is 271 lbs dry. 200cc more for 31 pounds is worth it to me.

I ride tight wooded trails and I didnt have any trouble throwing it around and I am 53, 175 lb.

To much power is just enough

I'm 45 and ride mine on trails ,same trails I've rode 2 smokes on back in my youth,No it's not easy to pick up ,Tip,don't drop it :cry:

But seriously,I enjoy my BRP,wouldn't trade it for anything out there :cry:

I can lug it or run the snot out of it,and it still get's me there.....

Plus,It handles like a dream despite its weight.....

If you are riding almost exclusively tight woods I would say there are probably better tools for the job. But for an all round bike that occasionaly goes there the 650R does a pretty good job. It "feels" lighter then it is, particularly against the older 600R I had and not far off some of the current 400's or 450's for that matter. The motor and it's torque really saves the day here, and a single gear covers a huge speed range making the riding aspect pretty simple. The weight will wear a lot of people down eventually and it helps to be a big or fairly strong rider here!

I do it on my L and it’s allot heavier than the R. If the L will go anywhere I imagine the R will as well. But it is a lot of work. I love it though, when all my buds are trailering up I am riding away. :cry:

I'm 40 and have spent the last few years on a 650R in almost exclusively tight woods. It works just fine in the tight stuff as long as you don't try and manhandle the big girl. Just relax and let the bike do the work. It's not the most nimble bike out there but the torque and stability make up for it. I even won a hare scramble on the 650 and have trophies from several others. It's worth the extra effort just to see look on the faces of the other riders when the big 650 goes by. :cry:

45 years old and after 2 seasons of riding a lot of tight single track in Colorado and Wyoming I'm thinking of going to a 450. The idea of having the magic e-start button is really starting to appeal to me. Don't get me wrong the XR650R is a very capable bike but in the really nasty slow and tight stuff it really wears me out on an all day advanced ride.

BTW I'm in good shape at 6' 195lbs and lift weights 5-6 days a week.


I am 44 and like my XL600 in the woods just fine. The older I get the more I like having monster torque to do all the work. I like having my butt parked in the saddle with the suspension and engine doing the hard work. I also think that with more experience I have learned to let the bike do what it does best and not push it. In other words, I can always pass the punks when we hit some two track. :cry:

I am 37 and live in the northwest, lots of mud, trees, roots and rocks, oh and hills with all of the above in the way. What is important, which most of the responses have hit on is when you have soooo much power under you the weight is not that big of deal. Just a little twist and if feels light. 2 things to note also. Picking it up can wear you out, and kicking there after will hurt if you don't have a friendly carb like the the Edelbrock. I thought the gearing was a bit big for trees, it seemed like I was bouncing into 1st and up to second too much so I geared down, (bigger 52 tooth rear from a 48) so I could stay in second more often and not have to shift so damn much. You lose top end, but in the woods you will never need to go 100mph. Or ever for that matter. The question you need to ask yourself is can you handle a bike the the XR650R. Are you Man Enough.

The 650 does great in the woods if you're not tryin' to go too fast. In fact, I think the faster you try to go, the slower you go. I find that if I try to cut-n-thrust with the 650 like I do on my CRF450, I get worn out very quickly, end up crashing or overshooting corners, banging trees, etc. You have to ride it completely different. If you slow down before the corners, it's easy to just leave it in 2nd or 3rd & roll on the throttle coming out of the corners. My riding buddies think I actually go faster on the 650 than my 450, even in the tight stuff. It just doesn't feel like it. The Edelbrock helps a lot, and a little lower gearing helps too (I run 14/50 in the woods). I like the drilled-out stock exhaust tip best for the woods.

I ride my 650L in the woods alot and it works fine for me. The only times I get in trouble is when I have to stop on uneven hills and since I'm kinda short 5'8 185lbs I usually end up laying it over. But other than that I really dont mind the weight and its got plenty of power for those nasty hillclimbs. :cry: I also run a mile 6 days a week and lift weights and that helps my endurance and strength. So really the only complaint I have is I'm too short :cry:

Ever try Miracle Grow? :cry:

I would If I knew it worked lol :cry::cry:

It doesn't. Just don't stop on those uneven side hills, or when you do just make sure you jump off the bike on the uphill side. My friends laugh at me when I have to do this. Sucks, doesn't it! Good thing is, our transition from sitting to standing is a lot less work, & our knees don't bang the handlebars when we get in deep ruts! hahahah!

I'm 48 and I used to ride a 650L, but it' very... I mean very heavy. Here in Brazil we only ride in tight trais. I used to have some problems with it's short thotle. But I changed to a normal one, and my happy days just begun.... :cry:

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