Longish rides... anything you'd like to share?

Discussion in 'Ride Reports & Photos' started by Bob, Jul 2, 2019.

  1. skibum69

    skibum69 Well-Known Member

    Wellll...it can be said a lot of the "rock" disappeared after the RTR crash. It has never been the same but it has gotten better again in the last couple of years.
    Bob and TonisToo like this.
  2. Trash

    Trash Active Member

    My GS also consumed only a negligible amount of oil over the Trip.
    Gasoline, on the other hand, was another story! :eek:
    It was interesting to note that TonisToo’s oil cooled GS consistently returned 5-10% better fuel economy. :rolleyes:
    Bob and TonisToo like this.
  3. Bob

    Bob Active Member

    You can pressure wash the flies and mud all you want but this is what Lollipop really wanted:

    This was just for the mud and flies. Followed up with a spray bottle of hydrogen peroxide for the calcium chloride and some glass and plastic cleaners. I needed a full day to get to the point where I could put the bike and riding gear away. Bike's in storage now as we're heading home but will polish the plastic and metal and do the fluids and filter changes when I get back here in August.
    No surprise that pressure washing bikes and gear on the road helped with the final cleanup. LOL
    During this trip we used lots of WD40 on the switches and locks to keep them from sticking. Also used a little WD on some electrical connections as I forgot to throw in the Dialectric grease. Worked fine.
    I bought some AFC50(?) spray before I left but hadn't used it before and was afraid to try it on a long trip. I'll try a little here and there on the FSRs later this Fall and see how it works. Should be good for the rims, forks and some other places that don't heat up I guess.
    Calcium Chloride also kills zippers. Even a little makes the new style waterproof zippers hard to work. It destroyed the side zippers in my buddy's touring boots the first time he was up north. He finished that trip in eight days straight rain with plastic bags on his feet and electric tape keeping his boots on. He's since bought Forma boots and I've introduced him to Vario straps (Titan if you buy from MEC) just in case.
    Soap and warm water and a scrub brush is requisite 'pre cleaning' for the jacket and pants. After that it goes in the washer then gets the gore tex treatment. The jacket is not as water proof as it used to be and I may need the jacket zipper replaced but it don't owe me anything so I'll push it to failure and keep a waterproof shell handy. The pants remain waterproof but the side zips needed extra attention due to the CaCl2. The pants and boots suffer from the mud and the jacket and helmet suffers most from the dust. I waded to my boot tops in a fast flowing stream just to see if that would wash any of the CaCl2 off but I couldn't notice any difference after the water dried. A few flies let go tho:p
    Trash and skibum69 like this.
  4. skibum69

    skibum69 Well-Known Member

    You headed home?
  5. Bob

    Bob Active Member

    Yepper. Flying out Tuesday.
  6. RossKean

    RossKean Active Member

    Interesting discussion!

    I have done a fair number of "longish" trips as well. Comments in no particular order...

    Happy with riding solo or with a like-minded one (two at most) others. Like-minded means that they are OK to do things MY way!

    Long days (1000 km+) if I'm getting from point A to Point B. Shorter distances when trying to see stuff. Unfortunately, until I retire I will tend to try to do too much in too short a time and end out exhausted. (see below)

    Have a detailed travel plan with lots of built in contingencies. Be prepared to abandon or substantially modify the plan as the trip unfolds. This was a post-mortem for a trip I attempted four years ago:
    (I referenced this link on a previous thread on RtR but it is relevant to this discussion)

    Don't do major mechanical work on your bike less than two weeks before your scheduled departure. If shit happens and parts aren't readily available (or the dealer can't get you in), you may miss the trip!

    When going to bed for the night, you need a VERY clear idea where you will be the next night and accommodations arranged. Preferably 48 hours out but this is not always possible.

    I use a Zumo GPS but try to have backup maps available too.

    I use Google maps and MS Streets and Trips (2010) for initial planning. Once I have worked out all of the route segments, I re-create it in Basecamp to download to GPS. Use short (1-2 day) segments. Easier to pick up or edit after a change in itinerary. Once you transfer to GPS, take some time and CHECK IT CAREFULLY!!

    I use Spotwalla with an app (Bubbler GPS) on my Android phone so people at home can follow along. There is a similar app for iPhone (SW Connect). You can set it to collect data and only download in WiFi area if you don't have a data plan or let it download in cell area on the fly - doesn't use a lot of data but does use some. You can even embed images - see my trip to NL a couple years ago...
    Edit: If you click on the Newfoundland 2017 button and choose "adjustments", it will allow you to choose the % fill. Choose "ALL" and click Update and you will get a lot more points showing (every 5 minutes).

    Mostly highway and paved secondary roads (usually). Bike is not ideally suited to a lot of dirt or rough roads. Tool kit includes cell phone and credit card, CAA Membership, air pump, tire sticky string patch kit, Allen keys, spare fuses, a Li ion compact jump starter, a 17 mm wrench if I expect to need an oil change (I figure ~12,000 km is safe for synthetic oil on a long trip - shorter interval for local short hop rides).

    I don't pay enough attention to hydration or nutrition. I do best with big breakfast and snacks through the day then a good dinner once stopped for the night. LOTS of water makes a big difference. Do better than I do!

    I try to camp whenever possible to control costs but it takes an additional 1.5 hr/day or more and additional planning compared to hotel.

    Ibuprophen is your friend for aches and pains - take before you start to hurt!!

    I find the credit card trick hit or miss at the gas pump - depends on where you are.

    Love to have a beer once I'm done for the day but generally limit it to two at the most. Not hung over but not as sharp as I should be the next morning. Don't need judgement impaired or attention span reduced when riding. Not to mention getting fatigued more easily.

    Plan on a "down" day or at least a light riding day every 4 or 5 days. Helps re-establish perspective.

    Prepare for crappy weather!!! Bring clothes warmer and cooler than you think you will need. I did a mid-summer 3 week cross continent ride a number of years ago. Froze in the western mountains, chilled and wet in Northern Ontario, absolutely roasted in the US northeast.

    Have a "Plan B" in case things go to hell. Family emergency, illness, accident or mechanical failure.

    Tons of other stuff but each individual has to find what works for them.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2019
    Bob, Trash and HunterSon like this.
  7. Trash

    Trash Active Member

    Like RossKean, I find that the older I get, the more proper hydration is becoming an issue.
    I think a big reason for that is, the more I properly hydrate, the more unplanned stops I have to make.
    If you get my drift... :(
  8. Bob

    Bob Active Member

    Thanks for the quality post RossKean.
    Re Navigation:
    This ride reminded me of some things I already know.... like I KNOW I need a better GPS, been keeping my eye open for a refurbished discontinued 6xx as I have a power cradle for it but no joy so far. I use the Montana to save the track info daily but often it can't find the 7-11 I'm looking at across the street from the hotel it couldn't find from the same 7-11 LOL Good thing about riding up north is you only need paper maps.

    I have my son's contact info as my I.C.E screen saver on my I-Phone and keep the phone in an inside pocket. I.C.E screen also my age, blood type, number to my cell and meds... thankfully no health issues or meds. Family package also allows them to track/find me when the phone is on.

    Our cross fit coach says to try and drink about 1/3 of your body weight in ounces per 24hrs. That's 60 oz a day for me. I find fluid consumption depends on the temps, humidity and riding and I also count tea, coffee and beer because they're fluids too, right?
    We both got severe leg cramps in the early hours of the morning if we neglected to hydrate (the Charlie Horse From Hell) and stretch. We only forget once... LOL

    Riding buddy:
    We met a fair number of solo riders but not as many as I expected. We both ran solo for a couple of days to where we met up and again from where we parted to our homes. Talked to a number of groups of three... that number seemed to be ideal for accommodation costs and for emergencies but meant someone had to take 'the cot' every third night and required a bit more planning and coordination all around. As you said, like minded individuals with similar abilities and expectations works best.

    The experts say most accidents happen close to home at the beginning or end of a ride. I take that to mean daily of course, but I'm also very weary of the dreaded 'day three'. I've found that most folks blow thru the first two days on adrenaline and bonhomie. The riders who are in good form start to settle in on day three, while the ones who are not ready start to have issues. Once that gets sorted the rest of the ride is usually smooth until it's time to head for home. Some less experienced riders treat that as a race and start throwing down long days when they, and their bikes, are sometimes more vulnerable than they know. Always nice to have a chat about how the different stages of the ride are going and pace yourself accordingly.

    I always put the bike on the centre stand at the end of the day to check the oil and tires in the morning plus it helps with loading up. I've seen heat and heavy loads do surprising things to new touring tires. We put 10,000kms on K60s from start to finish. Not an ideal pavement tire so I kept a closer eye on it than usual. I think we only covered about 2500kms gravel at different stages so changing to K60s would not have been practical and taking street tires on some of the routes would have been inviting trouble.

    I totally agree about hitting the reset button on rest days. We managed to time one rest day with a rainstorm but we also pushed a bit in good weather to take advantage of the dirt road conditions. We got caught in a three heavy storms but we rode through them in a couple of hours so nothing like the all day downpours we get at home. Temps ranged from 5C to 35C but we had the gear for that.

    I hemmed and hawwed about buying Sidi Adventure gore tex due to the cost. They were great on the pegs while my budd with Formas said his weren't stiff enough. You could easily tour up in that area in any safe boot of course, but we spent three days in a row mostly on the pegs in 'variable' conditions and that's where a boot with a good shank and good support comes in. They are also waterproof as advertised but have a thickish liner so I found a very thin 'smart wool' sock best. I tried to get a pair of Aerostich Combats as I prefer a leather lining and prefer to do my own 'waterproofing' but none to be had. Anybody got a pair of size 10s I'd have a look tho...:)

    Again, thanks for posting up RossKean, there is indeed "tons of stuff" as you say and I find reading and writing about it helps keeps it in mind. I'll look into the tekkie stuff you mentioned when I can grab my son to s'plain it to me. LOL
  9. HunterSon

    HunterSon Active Member

    Do you mean like a Garmin 60Cx? If you do, I have one I am not using. Make any offer you want and it is yours.
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2019
  10. Bob

    Bob Active Member

    The Garmin Zumo 665 was originally on the bike. The power cradle and weather chummy were included in the sale but not the GPS :(
    Thanks for the offerHunterSon but I'll take the Nuvi from the truck until I find a discounted 665. I can hard wire the Nuvi and keep it in my tank bag for water protection. I only look at it when I'm stopped anyway, and it has 'pedestrian mode' so great for off bike urban stuff.
  11. Bob

    Bob Active Member

    Can't find the Montana anywhere at the moment but here's a screen shot of the 'Alaska' rides and some other stuff. Used different colour routes for different days when I remembered. The straight lines are when I forgot to pull the battery with the GPS switched off.
    Pesky blue flags not mine...
    Screen Shot 2020-01-29 at 2.02.44 PM.jpg

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