May 2020

Although the title talks about crossing the desert on a motorcycle and most can think of sand dunes, the reality is that we are going to find extremely hostile terrain of boulders, sand, dead-end paths, dry dust and brush. Much more than the idyllic photos crossing a golden sea with the sun setting on the horizon.

Anyway, we are not going to talk about the world of raid competition. We will talk about crossing the desert as an excursion, which are getting more and more followers and have generated a whole professional way of life around them, either organizing these outings or providing part of the logistics.

Nor do we refer to organized tours where they give you the motorcycle ready to start and with all the mechanical support for any breakdown, although it is a very valid option and that avoids added problems.

If you are one of those who undertake the adventure on their own and think that it is worth doing it with your motorcycle, we give you some tips to keep in mind.

Motorcycle type

Enduro or trail motorcycle? The route is the one that marks the choice a little, and the pocket also has to do, of course. If the route has a mix of asphalt, dirt, sand, you should think about which option is the most suitable. An enduro motorcycle is a good option because it is practically a competition motorcycle with its pros (a high power / weight ratio) and its cons (discomfort, wear and maintenance). Trail motorcycles are perhaps more suitable for most of the public to crossing the desert. They are very reliable, comfortable to ride, with mechanics relatively easy to fix and more durable.

Fuel tank

At least we must have a range of 200 km. If we can add something else, it is better, but that is a sufficient route to find a supply point.


Regardless of the brands, models, and the route chosen in terms of lug height, density… what is extremely important is the anti-puncture system. There are good and varied ones on the market, such as tubliss, mousses, self-sealing liquids, tireballs, etc. However, none of them is infallible, so it does not hurt to take what is necessary for emergency repairs.


Many necessary tools are already included with the bike. For example, the ones that come with the KTM allow you almost everything. What you must take into account of the selection you make is the weight, which is a handicap, but above that you have to take into account the usefulness. Do not take tools to solve a problem that you do not know how to fix, although this is an issue that sometimes creates controversy, since it could be the case that someone could help you and who knew how to use it.

General considerations

Consider your own possibilities, your fitness, and your ability to solve problems. Your driving and navigation skills. It is always better to sin wisely than to regret a bad time.

Now you have to enjoy, and above all, have the mechanics ready and make sure that your braking system is the best: NG Brakes, of course.