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Old 12-01-2012, 07:09 PM   #46
dirtydeeds
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Originally Posted by dukedinner View Post
+ 1. Seasoned travellers, no matter what the mode, seem to plan less but are usually prepared to cope with the unexpected...and have just the right amount of good gear to get them through.
I agree. It's a become a bit of a problem now. I have moto gear and can be ready for a 6 month trip in about an hour or 3. Depending on if I have to check the valves or change the tires.

My gf needs to plan things. When I plan a trip for us it involves buying a map (choosing a good map takes me a few hours, still. You need good detail to find the good stuff.) and setting a date. This doesn't work for her though. Now stops have to be planned, hotels booked, restaurants need to be googled, etc.

I'd like to learn more about GPSing and google earth. Just haven't had the time.
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Old 12-01-2012, 07:19 PM   #47
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Well, I try to plan my routes as detailed as possible and then... I'm in the hands of circumstances: real Adventures Start when things don't happen according to plan... Rain, storm, traffic, puncture, no vacancies, no gas, get lost, road closures, police chase etc... you know...


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Old 12-05-2012, 07:46 PM   #48
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And yet you start a thread about it.
Those were my exact thoughts! And at the risk of being ridiculed for doing so, I'll admit that I plan. In detail. But I also plan on being flexible to some extent. I normally do not make motel or campsite reservations but like to know where I"ll be when the day ends. The main reason I plan is because I don't have the luxury of wandering about for weeks at a time; perhaps when I no longer am burdened with working for a living. My trips usually are with a particular destination and sometimes, like this year and next, a date when I must be somewhere. Knowing when and where I have to be somewhere, I plan to take the best advantage of my time to and from that place. I scope out the roads, ask questions of those who have been there before me, and try to make the most of what time I have.

But, and it may seem strange to you who disdain those of us who do plan, I enjoy myself both during the planning stage and during the execution stage.

YMMV (mine rarely does)
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:49 PM   #49
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Planning usually makes most people's trips better, not worse.

It's not about figuring out the exact route, but making sure that you see what is there instead of driving by it because you weren't even aware something amazing was in that region.

It is often about saving money and getting more for your money. If you do your research, you can go to that nice family guesthouse that costs peanuts and has higher quality than the big and expensive hotels nearby.

And some really cool attractions actually require special passes/access/etc to set up before hand. If you just show up, you will be denied. So, for example, it would be rather stupid to show up on the wrong day and wait 2 weeks for the full moon because at the gate you learn that there is a moonlight tour (often with a moon lit rainbows). Or realize that you could've had a tour of some cool African diamond mine if you had arranged for permissions and tour a few weeks in advance. Things like that...

Particularly when you are on the road on a big trip, you have a lot of downtime to do a bit research. Sure, some people get paranoid and go overboard, but even then it's good: it relaxes people and they feel more confident when they set out on the road.

In summary, there are potentially very big downsides to minimal planning, and very minor upsides. Most people on the road have lots of downtime and it's not like they are "saving time" if they don't plan.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:54 PM   #50
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Some planning needs to happen. Gotta put in vacation request for some date. Meet friends in Las Vegas, they want to know what day to be there. But all the stuff in between, where to camp, or eat, which road to take.... You can wing it for a lot of that. But I have to agree with earlier posts, spending the winter planning my trip in extreme detail is a lot of fun. Gets me through the winter.
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:33 AM   #51
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When you've been on your bike for 14 hours in the cold rain and you can't find a campground to save your life, you'll wish you did a little more planning.

It's almost a necessity now to book ahead of time if you plan on camping anywhere near a big national park in the US (think Yellowstone or the Grand Canyon). You can't just roll up and expect an empty campground. When I was there in July (no holiday weekend or anything like that), the only spot in the entire park ( including campgrounds, cabins and hotel rooms) that was available was one hotel room at the very north end of the park (a 2.5 hour drive). When we tried to book it, someone else had reserved it in the 2 minutes between finding the spot and trying to book it.

All that being said, I love getting feedback from locals on roads to ride while I'm out touring around. Having a guaranteed spot to stay at night is nice and reassuring though. I'm also not one to drop 60 bucks for a hotel room every night when i'm out for 17 days. Finding campgrounds is a lot more difficult than rolling into a Holiday Inn Express
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:04 PM   #52
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I plan. I don't plan every single mile... but I set out and make an approximate route, and guess about where I'll be staying. I've gone on rides without a plan at all... but I've found I find much cooler stuff (and better roads) if I do some research and planning before I head out.

For those that refuse to plan.... wouldn't it just erk you to get home from a nice ride... and find out you passed right by opportunities like these:









All these roads can be found online, but chances of you stumbling upon them while just aimlessly wondering are slim. If I'm riding around my state, I'll gladly head out without any idea where I'm going... but if I'm heading out on a trip that I may never get to do again, I want to know I'm going to see some of the coolest stuff there is to see!
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:23 PM   #53
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I'd guess that I do more "research" than "planning." I usually have a list of roads I want to ride and places I want to see. I usually have a daily mileage target in mind. Once I'm on the road, I usually know where I'll end up at the end of the day, and tomorrow I'll figure out tomorrow.

Do I know exactly where I'll be at the end of each day? No.

Do I know approximately where I want to be at the end of each day? Yes.

But if I only have a week of vacation (weekend + 5 week days + weekend = 9 days) and I want to see a dozen places scattered 4,000 miles apart, some "planning" is involved, at least for me.

I tend to research and prioritize what I want to do. If I only have 9 days of vacation, I can't spend five days hiking around Yellowstone; I just don't have the time. If I want to see several places say, Glacier NP and Yellowstone and the Badlands and Rocky Mountain NP then I have to have some sense of time management: what can I see in 9 days? Logistics are just part of the trip. Logistical problems fall under the "planning" aspect of my trips.

If you have no destination, then maybe you can avoid planning altogether. But I tend to have specific places I want to see, so I need to plan some of the trip.

Just my $0.02. Everyone is different. And I think everyone figures out what's best for them after their first trip. There's no right or wrong way to take a trip. All that matters is the ride. Enjoy every mile!
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:26 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by Witold View Post
Particularly when you are on the road on a big trip, you have a lot of downtime to do a bit research. Sure, some people get paranoid and go overboard, but even then it's good: it relaxes people and they feel more confident when they set out on the road.
+1

This is me. I spend my winters researching and I usually have an absurd amount of ideas in my head when I finally hit the road. And this knowledge helps me relax and enjoy myself, since I know where I'm going and what I can expect, and this helps my confidence immensely.
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:28 PM   #55
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I don't plan all of my rides but when I have a goal I do.

The plan was to try to complete the IBA 49 states in 10 days ride on a Victory Kingpin.

I would need a map. This map is more than lines, it's 49 way-points that I loaded into my GPS.
One way-point for each state and each one was a gas station as close to the freeway as possible. Months of planning.

My start time was based on my end time 10 days and 8,818 miles later in Alaska.
And because Alaska would be my 50th state that I have rode in I wanted to end on the 4th of July.
An average of 880 miles a day for 10 days would require good gear. More planning.

I ended the ride in Hyder, Alaska in 9 days, 17 hours and 16 minutes on the 4th of July! All of the planning was worth it.

I had also rode a Victory in Hawaii in mid-May and Alaska on the 4th of July. 50 states in less than 2 months.

The map -

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Old 12-09-2012, 05:58 AM   #56
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Everyone on a motorcycle trip has a plan. Even no plan is a plan...
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Old 12-09-2012, 08:45 AM   #57
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Even no plan is a plan...
That's very Zen.
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Old 12-09-2012, 09:02 AM   #58
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That's very Zen.
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