AMA Difficulty Grading System


21 Apr AMA Difficulty Grading System

Our Dual Sport Motorcycle Route grading.

All our routes have been ridden and tested by Ferdie Muller, our main guide and part owner of AMA. Now first of all I would like to clarify a couple of points. When you book a tour with us we expect:
1. That you have ridden a dual sport motorcycle before
2. That you have a valid driver licence for at least one year prior to the start of the tour.
3. That you will not classify yourself higher in your ability than you should.
4. That you can ride and handle a motorcycle equal to the size, weight, height and strength of the motorcycle you intend using on our tours.
Let me explain some of these points. Conditions all over the world vary and south Africa have some of the best dual sport motorcycle routes in the world, from those for a novice, to very experienced. Lest propose that you have only ridden on a 650cc motorcycle you whole life, it will be very unsafe to ride a motorcycle of 1200cc. The whole dynamics of the motorcycle is different, therefore, we expect you to be able to ride a motorcycle that you are most use to and most probably one with the same cc capacity as your own, therefore 650cc, 990cc or 1200cc.
It is also very important that we will do the grading based on dirt roads, meaning it is roads that do not have any hard substance such as asphalt, tar, cement or concrete. We expect you to be able to ride on any type of hard service road.
Now, when it gets to the grading, we also want to emphasise that any road consisting out of silt, gravel, sand or dirt can go from a level 1 (novice) grading to a 5 (very experienced) grading within minutes and will we expect you to be able to accept this and that the grading system is not the Alpha and Omega.

For a full explanational video please click on the video below and watch in highest resolution possible:

Level 1 – Novice or beginner rider
Dirt roads that is in good condition, easy to ride with a predictable behaviour with little or no sand patches not any muddy sections or ruts that’s been left by vehicles after rain

Level 2 – Beginner to intermediate rider
Dirt roads where you have to be careful from time to time however the road condition will be in an overall good state. This could be a road with some sandy patches, muddy sections, potholes or ruts left by vehicles after rain.

Level 3 – Intermediate to semi experienced rider
Dirt roads that haven’t been graded or maintained for a while and will often have unpredictable road services such as sandy patches, muddy sections, potholes, rocks and corrugation or ruts left by vehicles after rain. These roads might also be fairly curvy roads with blind sports. These roads could also include low water bridges and well maintained drifts filled with water.

Level 4 – Experienced riders
These dirt roads starts becoming difficult in the sense that it is very narrow often a two track road that could have any of the following, sand, rocks, mud, ruts, potholes, ditches, blind corners, animals, fallen trees etc. Obstacles become increasingly more and difficult to navigate. Road such as these could also pass over water courses and drifts filled with water

Level 5 – Experience to expert riders
These dirt roads is for the adrenaline seekers and will these roads often have all the obstacles mentioned above and will often lead into situations where the road condition cannot be determines because it is full of muddy water, thick sand, big rocks and water crossing where the bottom cannot be seen. These sorts of roads will require the utmost skill on any dual sport motorcycle.