Dual-Sport and Off-Road Videos
Dual sport bikes are a great way to get out and see the world, but they can also be dangerous for the uninitiated or inexperienced rider. It's not like going on a day-long trail ride where you come home at the end of the ride. Dual sport rides are meant to be an adventure where you're gone for days, weeks, and even months on end; sometimes with friends, but often-times alone. That type of undertaking requires quite a bit of advanced planning. Fortunately, the popularity of dual sport riding has given rise to many dual sport DVDs and instant videos that focus on off road riding.
Long Way Round: Although it isn't really a how-to-ride DVD, Long Way Round with Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman is an epic adventure everyone should watch, whether you're going to embark on an off-road trip or are simply an armchair traveller. The show starts off a bit slow as they spend a few episodes showing all the preparation, but once you watch the whole series you'll appreciate why they included those initial episodes. Long Way Down was the follow-up video with a trip to Africa, and the final video of the series focused on riding the Dakar rally. The Long Way Round shows are also available through Amazon's Instant Video. There are eight episodes, and you can watch each episode for $1.99, which is comparable to the DVD purchase price. The instant vids are a good option for those who aren't sure if they'll like the show. As mentioned previously - the show starts off a bit slow with all the preparation, so maybe start with the Episode Two instant video. If you have Amazon's Prime the Instant Videos might be free, which isn't a bad deal.
Next choice would probably be the Achievable Dream Series. It's a five-DVD set that can be purchased either as a set or separately. The series starts with the Get Ready DVD where they take you step-by-step through the process of planning your off-road adventure and making sure you have the uber-important paperwork in order. If embarking on a dual sport adventure seems too dangerous, complicated, or expensive, this DVD is a good place to get your basic questions answered. The series moves on to the Gear Up DVD, which covers what gear to bring and how to pack it. There are also interviews with bike owners about which bike they chose and why. If you only have enough money for one DVD, this looks like the one to buy. It’s slightly higher-priced than the others, ($39.99 vs. $24.99), but it has over 5 hours of video. Next in the series is the Tire Changing segment which covers all you need to know about changing a tire in the middle of nowhere. The final DVD in the Achievable Dream series focuses on women riders. Women face additional challenges when planning an off-road adventure, but luckily they have that covered with Just for the Ladies.
Another good video source for beginning dual sport riders is Dirt Riding Skills for Dual Sport and Adventure Riders which is produced by Carl Adams, who also has a companion book The Essential Guide to Dual Sport Motorcycling, both available on Amazon. The DVD is aimed at beginner dirt bike and/or dual sport riders but also covers a few advanced riding techniques as well. It gets good reviews on Amazon, but most of the reviewers agree that the the video is a companion to the book and should really be purchased together. The DVD also comes with a small printed field guide that can be taken on trail rides and used as a reference for all of the exercises learned.
Dirt Riding Skills for Dual Sport Video: Here's a trailer for the Dirt Riding Skills for Dual Sport and Adventure Riders DVD, and the second video is a trailer for the Gear Up! video from The Achievable Dream Series: