From the time I was old enough to start riding a bicycle, I have had a serious case of two wheel wanderlust. I used to lose all track of time when bicycling and end up the subject of neighborhood search parties on a farily regular basis. My first motorcycle, which I got when I was 15 or 16, was a Honda Express moped. I adventure rode that thing all over the place. I wish I had pictures of it loaded down with fishing rods, nets, buckets etc. I kept it for about a year before I stepped up to a REAL adventure bike in the Honda XL100.
I rode fairly regularly up until my second year of college. My bikes were always too small for distance travel, but I ran them through the ringer locally. Like many of you, I gave up riding when school, work and family took on a higher priority. As I neared retirement from the military I bought a Honda XR650L as my reentry bike. I dabbled in a couple of bikes that were not particularly well suited for the distance travel that I envinsioned myself one day enjoying. As a retirement gift I bought myself a Suzuki Burgman 650 and my first multi-day tour.
The Burgman makes for a very capable, very comfortable tourer right out of the box. With the cavernous underseat storage, the great wind protection, and very good economy, performance and range, it literally needed nothing. I bungeed a backpack to the passenger pillion and took off for eight days. The trip was all I had hoped for and more. I met several people along the way some of whom have become very good friends. Groundhogger on this forum is one of them.
Since then I have taken quite a few multi day trips, and each one of them has a special place in my heart. On each of the trips I found myself experiencing things so powerfully beautiful or moving, that I always wished for the company of a loved one to share the experience with.
My daughter Karin has always enjoyed going for a quick ride on the bikes I've had. I asked her earlier this summer if she would want to ride her own bike on a trip with me. She seemed very excited about it. I set her up with a safety course, and she has since earned her M endorsement. She took a quick trip up to Memphis with me about a month ago to participate in Komet's honor ride. That was a great experience, but the pace of things was such that we didn't get to stop and smell the roses too much.
On August the 9th Karin and I will begin our 5 day tour through the southeast US. I'll be on a Burgman 650 and she'll be on a Burgman 400. I placed one condition on Karin when I payed for her class and invited her along. She had to chip in on the ride report. So this should be a bit of a different twist on a ride report. The same ride reported from vastly different perspectives. Climb aboard and join us if you will. It should be fun.