The sour taste of pavement still on our tongue, trundling down dirt roads slowly brought the F800GS into focus. The water bars and rock gardens that flummoxed the Triumph were no problem for the BMW, and in fact our confidence rose with every bump, jump, and turn. Three-mode ESA (Electronic Suspension Adjustment) controls rebound damping in the shock, though it’s hard to tell the difference between Comfort, Normal, and Sport settings. Because the F800GS is a heavy bike, we preferred the stiffest setting, Sport, both on road and off. Two simple ride modes, Enduro and Road, adjust throttle response, ABS, and TC intervention simultaneously—and, brilliant as always, BMW allows the rider to switch either ABS or TC off independently.