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new with lots of questions

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Recently bought a BMW R12gs coming from more sporty bikes (FZ1). 61 y/o. The r12 is a real nice road bike but i decided that I needed to learn to ride off road to take full advantage of the bike. I am in New Orleans. This weekend I teamed up a business trip to Atlanta with a dual-sport lesson in the mountains of north georgia. WOW!!! I road a 250 cc dual sport mostly on fire roads up and down the mountains with lots of good instruction. I've never had more fun on two wheels. I now have decided that i need a light weight dual sport to really enjoy off road (if i can find one here in southern Louisiana). The 250 was great but i suspect that i will have to ride 25-40 miles to get to something to ride on and therefore i guess the 250 may be too small. Would you all recommend a 300, 400 ? All suggestions appreciated...thanks 🙂

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AJS, I'm glad you rode the 250. I've seen people make the mistake of getting too dirty on the GS. There should be plenty of dualsported xr400's in your neck of the woods. The DRZ 400S is another good choice. The 250 is more capable than you might suspect. I've ridden the LA-Barstow-Vegas a couple of times with a guy on an xr250.

I dont know about the laws in your area, but check with local riders and clubs and see who's got something for sale, and has any advice. I like Traderonline.com for used bike shopping.

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I would think you need to know what you are calling Dual Sport and what you want to do.

If a lot of pavement to and from dirt roads a 650 might make you happy, there just better when you hit the highway. You have owned an FZ1 so power is not new to you and your old enough to know better. The 400 are better when there are no trails and you have to pick it up, but they suck on the main highway and a 250 is worse, but much lighter and less tiring in the woods and still fun on back roads. It all depends on your riding experience, some time a 250 is just a better bike all around.

If there or OHV riding area in you area, I might suggest you get a 250 and learn how to ride at the OHV parks, and if you can, tag the bike for those local or out of state Dual Sport rides.

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