CRF250L: Time to get dirty – off road review

After about a month of owning my brand new pristine 2014 Honda CRF250L I decided it was time to give it a true offload test and truly get it dirty!  Up until now most of my riding has been on the pavement or some nice dirr logging roads.  today’s “Get Dirty” event took the 250l through everything from creeks, rocky terrain, mud pits and ice.  To start off i have already given the bike a few mods to increase its off road capability.  My first mode was bark buster hand guards (after breaking multiple clutch leavers on my previous bike) followed by a rear rack, emperor skid plate and rad guard. So far my only real performance mod would be lowering the gearing by changing out the sprockets.
As of this post my current mod list:
13T front sprocket / 42T Rear sprocket
– Zeta Bark buster hand guards
Emperor racing skid plate / rad guard
– Emperor racing rear rack
Tusk 30mm Handle bar risers
Full preload adjustment
CRF150R Folding shifter


The stock tires are excellent on the pavement and pretty decent “for stock” off road. They do tend to clump up in mud fairly easy but over all they will get the job done. With the lower gearing the bike is very capable in steep/technical terrain. I had no problem climbing steep hills, rocky ledges or fallen trees. My previous bike was a Yamaha Trailway-  TW200 (aka the T-Dub) which was super low geared go anywhere kind of thumper.. so far i feel like the CRF250L is a worthy upgrade (that can handle highway speeds!) .. It does make me laugh that i find my self doing mods to make it a little more TW like.. aka lowering the gearing and wanting wider tires. Having more ground clearance is very nice, how ever it comes at a cost of being a little tipy in the technical terrain (with out our feet to save you).. I suspect this will be less of an issue once i get used to the bike and increase my skill. The poor CRF250L got laid down 3 times in the video.. and sadly one of the falls (i suspect the one at the end in the water on the log) is the one that cracked my muffler fairing cover.. gotta break her in eventually.  On the plus side i tacked one onto a parts order and it was only $28.. future replacement if it happens again! Overall i’m very happy with the bike and can’t wait for the next adventure.

The video below is of a ride on some trails by Postill lake in Kelowna BC.  Given that the snow is still present at higher elevations the run off has made the trails very wet and muddy.. but that’s half the fun and made for my first real bike mud bogging.. wow can that be a work out.. who needs the gym when you have a mud pit! It was surprisingly hard to cut down 4 hours of footage into a short video.. after many revisions and cuts i got it down to under 8 minutes.. so sit back crack open a refreshing beverage and enjoy some clips from our ride.

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