May 11, 2015
By Mike Schoby
When hunters think of all-terrain, off-road hunting vehicles, ATVs and UTVs are often the only options considered, but for many, two wheels may be better than four. Consider this: Dual sport motorcycles are easier to trailer to the hunting area than an ATV, and, if going short distances, they may not need to be trailered at all, as they are street legal. Most dual sport bikes can also pull double-duty as a commuter vehicle during the week — getting over 50 mpg! They are extremely maneuverable on tight trails and can access places ATVs or UTVs cannot. They also cost about half of a UTV.
While pretty functional right off the showroom floor, there are things that can be done to make them even more effective for hunters. To prove it, we sent a 2006 Kawasaki KLR 650, to Jim Pearson of Cycle Tech to create the ideal two-wheeled hunting machine.
Dunlop D606 Tires
Creating the best balance between aggressive off road knobbies and street tires, the Dunlop D606 is designed for the Dual Sport rider who wants the best of both worlds. The D606 is inspired by motocross patterns, but built with a rubber compound designed to last both on road and off.
Epic HD Camera
Record all of your adventures on the trail as well as on the hunt with the HD camera from Epic. This camera boasts 1920x1080p HD digital video with audio and a variety of mounting options, making it as easy to secure to your motorcycle as it is to a firearm. This compact unit also captures great still images for after the hunt.
IMS Replacement Tank
Extend the range of nearly any motorcycle with a larger tank. We replaced the stock tank with the larger 6.6-gallon version from IMS — the same as used on the Military M1030 motorcycle. To keep the military feel and functionality all the way around, we also selected IMS shifter and foot pegs.
Kolpin Gun Boot
Kolpin has been the gold standard in scabbards for years. And while its slim profile works great for most action types, it doesn't fit an AR. Enter the new Tactical model. The larger Tactical Boot holds all manners of tactical rifles. Coolest feature? It comes with a removable, soft-sided Transport case that fully unzips to create a padded shooting mat.
Ever call a motorcycle accessory company and ask for help designing a bracket to hold an AR-15 scabbard? Yeah, we know, weird question to ask, but luckily Happy Trail jumped at the challenge and fashioned a sturdy-as-hell bracket for€¨the Kolpin Gun Boot. Happy Trail also provided the dump truck-tough aluminum pannier, trunk, and body armor.
To keep the bike unobtrusive in natural settings, we had all the body work film-dipped by Dynamic Finishes in ATACS camo pattern, which blends in with a variety of outdoor settings. Best of all, this pattern is subtle enough to still look good on the street.
What was the world like before M.O.L.L.E.? This tank vest is made out of Cordura Nylon and features Mil-Spec M.O.L.L.E. attachment points, which transforms the tank into a place to store a handgun, GPS, calls, flashlights, or any number of other items. Available in a variety of tacti-cool colors.
The Essentials Gear Box.
Our editors have hand-picked these essential pieces of gear to make you a more successful hunter when you hit the game trails this season.