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Old 10-19-2014, 07:07 PM   #1
Kralc OP
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Month and a half experience; too little for a 4k mile trip?

Basically the title says it all. I'm 24 years old and I got my endorsement the 6th of October with the aspiration to ride from Albuquerque NM to Knoxville TN then on to Virginia Beach VA and back to visit family for Thanksgiving. I wanted to ask more experienced riders what they thought.

I ride a 2009 BMW G650gs with roughly 700 miles on it at the time of writing this. I'm an experience camper so I plan on stealth camping along the way.

My father, who has much more experience than I seems to think it wouldn't be enough time but I'm the type of person who plans extensively then jumps in head first. For some background, 2 years ago I quit my job and moved to ABQ from Virginia with my girlfriend of 8 months without knowing a soul out here.

I've been browsing the forums and compiling a list of maintenance things / riding tips, but if anyone has any other advice it'd be appreciated as well.
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Old 10-19-2014, 07:12 PM   #2
PJay
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The only way to get experience is to get experience.

Much better to concentrate it - how long would you otherwise take to get 4K miles up?

Supply yourself well enough with money, don't overplan, don't buy/take too much equipment: that's all I'd suggest.
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Old 10-19-2014, 07:17 PM   #3
wvtaco
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Expect snow, stay warm and don't over push your self.
Go for it but have a back up plan.
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Old 10-19-2014, 07:19 PM   #4
JustKip
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kralc View Post
I ride a 2009 BMW G650gs with roughly 700 miles on it at the time of writing this. I'm an experience camper so I plan on stealth camping along the way.
If the bike only has 700 miles on it, in 5 years, I'd wonder if the initial break-in service has been done?

Other than that, I'd take the next 2 weekends to practice camping off the bike, so you'll know how that's going to work out, and how to pack before taking off on the trip...then GO!

4,000 miles isn't really all that much, so I wouldn't worry about maintenance on the road as long as everything is up to date before you leave.
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Old 10-19-2014, 07:26 PM   #5
falcofred
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Must be a gal in Virginia Beach, what's her name? We need pictures.
Experience would probably tell you its too late in the season for a trip like this, lucky you don't have the experience to know better

Good gear will make this much better, Gortex, layers, water proof gloves, heated gear if you can afford it, and your bike has enough charging power.
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Old 10-19-2014, 07:27 PM   #6
Gripsteruser
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This thread might prove useful because the proposition was similar and the advice would apply to you as well.

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1010608

He hasn't posted a trip report so we don't know how it all worked out though.

I recommend doing a camping trip off the bike as others have suggested. Ride a few hours to learn how your butt and muscles will react and figure out the camping part.

If you use good judgement and don't ride in traffic, in the dark, in rain or snow or when tired you will have a great lifetime experience.
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Old 10-19-2014, 07:32 PM   #7
JustKip
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I just realized something...700 miles, divided by 6 weeks...You've NEVER ridden 300 miles in a day? Do it. NOW!
You don't know IF this is something you want to do. If you do it, you'll need to ride hundreds of miles a day, every day. You need to try that before making a career out of it.
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Old 10-19-2014, 08:20 PM   #8
Kralc OP
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Thanks for the replys!

I've been stocking up on cold weather and waterproof gear, just need boots. Luckily this bike came stock with heated grips.

Quote:
Stick with state routes, not interstates.
Honestly, I hadnt considered this. Its 22 hours via I-40 to Knoxville and 28 hours via country highways. I really didnt want to add an extra day but if I have to, so be it.

Quote:
I just realized something...700 miles, divided by 6 weeks...You've NEVER ridden 300 miles in a day? Do it. NOW!
You don't know IF this is something you want to do. If you do it, you'll need to ride hundreds of miles a day, every day. You need to try that before making a career out of it
Quote:
I recommend doing a camping trip off the bike as others have suggested. Ride a few hours to learn how your butt and muscles will react and figure out the camping part.
Good point. Next weekend I'll do an overnight trip and see what I think.

Quote:
Supply yourself well enough with money, don't overplan, don't buy/take too much equipment
The last two points hit home.

Quote:
Experience would probably tell you its too late in the season for a trip like this, lucky you don't have the experience to know better
I lol'd
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Old 10-19-2014, 08:32 PM   #9
wadenelson
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It's not an adventure if it doesn't take you outside of your comfort zone.

Set a date. You're going. Come hell, high water, cold or wind, you're going.

It'll be epic, no matter what mistakes you make, what equipment you have to buy o r break in route, etc.

I concur on one thing. Don't ride tired or cold. Take the extra days needed, start fresh the next day. Carry SEVERAL extra layers.

My first "long" ride was an overnight "poker" run, and nobody even warned me. Thought I was going for a 3 hour tour. Best thing that ever happened, although I coulda used ... extra layers!
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Old 10-19-2014, 09:24 PM   #10
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...news paper stuffed in your jacket is an excellent hobo style insulator...
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Old 10-19-2014, 11:27 PM   #11
DustyRags
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If you don't have really good foul-weather gear, get a Rev'it oversuit. Cheap-ish, and work REALLY well. Easy on, easy off, totally dry.

I love my Alpinestar Scout boots- totally waterproof, well armored, very comfortable. Do be aware that as they wear, the plastic coating can crack, and they won't be waterproof anymore, but you'll be fine for 4k miles (and then for a long time after).

If you don't have a windshield, get one and figure out how to adjust it so you don't get head rattle.

Take a day and ride at least 300 miles. Figoure out what sucks. Figure out how to fix it.

Take extra dry socks. In a pinch, trash bags between the boots and socks will go a LONG way to keeping your feet dry.

Goldbond Medicated Powder will keep your tushie happy. Saddle sores suck.

Get hand guards. Massive difference.

Get two visors- a clear and a smoked. You probably won't find many bugs this time of year, but at the end of the day it's great to swap to a clean, clear visor for the last hour in the dusk.

Wear ear plugs. Massive fatigue relief.

Take four days (at least). 28 hours is 7 hours a day, and that's JUST riding. That doesn't count lunch. Let's assume you stop for half an hour three times (lunch and a morning and afternoon stretch break) and for 10 minutes three times (gas and go, piss, whatever). Now you're looking at 9 hours for the day. Leave at 9:00, arrive at 6:00. That's a full day of riding.

Make every third day an easy day. The third day is where you're tired. Two hard days and a short day, two hard days and a short day.

Don't ride hungry, cold, or tired.

If you get gold, stop and take a piss. You'll be warmer.

Drink enough water. Small sips on a regular basis will keep you hydrated better and won't pass through you as quickly as chugging a bunch every two hours (few pee stops). Camelbaks and similar are great for this.

Take a camera and post a damn ride report!
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Old 10-20-2014, 03:39 AM   #12
HanzoSteel
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There is good advice from everyone.

I took a 2,200 mile trip from Colorado to California a month after I got my endorsment. I say go for it.
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Old 10-20-2014, 07:38 AM   #13
dmason
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Load your bike with your camping gear. Ride 200 miles. Camp. Ride back. You'll figure out what needs done differently.

Do this at least once and you're ready. Don't do it and you're not.
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Old 10-20-2014, 08:02 AM   #14
atomicalex
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Please take an all-day trip with a fully loaded bike first. Your body will thank you later. You need to condition yourself a bit to long days in the saddle.

Prior to my big trips, I usually ladder up for two weeks and taper a few days - as I'm riding for about an hour a day in bits anyway, it's a 4hr trip and a 6hr trip one weekend, then two 8hr days the next weekend, then leave for trip. That way the facts of longs days are fresh in my mind. Most of the prep trips are to nowhere, just days in the saddle to condition myself.

You also need to know that your gear/helmet fit all day. This is critical.
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Old 10-20-2014, 08:37 AM   #15
No False Enthusiasm
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Oh... to be young and foolish...

Now, I'm just old and foolish. Follow much of the good advice posted, and you'll be fine.

Enjoy the adventure. It becomes even more of an adventure when you charge off after the age of 60...

NFE
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