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Old 10-15-2013, 12:17 PM   #1
ironeagle OP
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Location: Long Island, NY, USA
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ADVice for a new guy

I'm leaving for my first long trip in a few days. I plan to cover about 2,000-2,500 miles round trip over 10-14 days on my 2005 KLR650 (New York to Tennessee), and I just want to see if you more experienced ADV'ers can offer any last-minute advice to a new fella.

I did my doohickey, upgraded my brake pads/brake lines to stainless steel, just did a fresh oil change and everything is running like it should.

I know myself well enough to know if I'm not in the right frame of mind to be riding. I keep my speed reasonable (which isn't too hard on a KLR, even though I'm an under-25 male), I've been practicing riding the bike fully loaded, and I've intentionally left my schedule open enough that I'm not pressured to put away miles to meet deadlines etc.

I know I can't just make the butterflies in my stomach go away (and even if I could, would it be as fun?), but I'd appreciate any advice you can give on staying safe and having a good first outing.

Thanks!
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Old 10-15-2013, 05:14 PM   #2
usgser
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Ride within your limits an ALWAYS(as in 100%) maintain situational awareness.
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Old 10-15-2013, 06:22 PM   #3
Mark Manley
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If possible set off in good weather, don't ride too far on your first day and know where you will stay on your first night, perhaps book a hotel or campsite.

Good luck with your trip but beware it is highly addictive.
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Old 10-15-2013, 06:27 PM   #4
CloneBoy
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take a couple extra dry bags


and look at the stuff your taking, then put half of it away, you wont need half of what you think you absolutely must have
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Old 10-15-2013, 06:43 PM   #5
Tsilatipac
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Try to be off of the road by dusk. Deer can ruin your day.
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Old 10-15-2013, 06:49 PM   #6
Wannabee
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I just did a ride report on my trip down the BRP ..anxiety and related issues being my concerns. Sounds like you have the right Idea , open ended schedule , don't pressure yourself into haveing to ride a ton of miles if you don't feel up to it .
An inmate gave me this advise "Fuck it and ride " , worked for me

sent from my Illudium Q-36 explosive space modulator
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Old 10-16-2013, 04:41 AM   #7
MikeMike
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Originally Posted by Wannabee View Post
"Fuck it and ride "
+1

And don't forget anything important, like your wallet, on the kitchen table!
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Old 10-16-2013, 09:28 AM   #8
One Fat Roach
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You're on the right path young Padi-won. Nerves and butterflies are normal. I did my first trip like the one your about to.take earlier this summer. After a day or two on the road it will be eased and you'll be craving more and more. And you'll consistently be learning things. Either how to pack or unpack faster and more efficiently. Repairs. How to deal with Moran drivers or anything. Every ride is a learning experience.

Enjoy!!
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Old 10-16-2013, 09:43 AM   #9
Spacelord
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Don't forget to stop and smell the roses, or whatever...enjoy yourself and don't sweat the details.
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Old 10-16-2013, 10:15 AM   #10
ironeagle OP
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Thanks for the words of encouragement. I think "Fuck it and ride" might be my motto for this ride (and beyond)!
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:53 AM   #11
InsideThePerimeter
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If you do the Tail of the Dragon in NC right across the line from TN go on a week day not a sunny weekend or holiday as it will be a Zoo with slow riding Harley's in huge packs blocking the road and death wish crotch rockets doing wheelies and sliding round the corners draging knees at 90 MPH or the worst, car clubs - Porsche, Corvette, BMW - with some rich old geezer always on the wrong side of the road. The state Troopers from both TN and NC tend to show up about then too. Don't ask how I know.

That said, some of the best riding around is right there, Dragon, Cherohala Skyway, 68/60, scenic 360, Moonshiner 28.

If your going to ride all that way be sure to check it out.
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Old 10-18-2013, 04:24 AM   #12
buls4evr
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Check your bike over every day that you are on the road before you leave in the AM. Tire pressure? All lights working? Chain adjustment good? Any critical bolts missing? Just a quick once over....that is your lifeline sitting there. It is easier to repair at the overnite stop usually. And at this point I highly recommend "tent space" as you can generally find ADV people along your route that are literally full service providers.....Beds, good advice, tools, garages. Have a blast.
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Old 10-18-2013, 04:43 AM   #13
Pecha72
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Originally Posted by buls4evr View Post
Check your bike over every day that you are on the road before you leave in the AM. Tire pressure? All lights working? Chain adjustment good? Any critical bolts missing? Just a quick once over....that is your lifeline sitting there. It is easier to repair at the overnite stop usually.
Good advice. Learn to know your bike really well, and it also gets much easier to feel it straight away, if something΄s wrong. I check my bike after each day΄s riding, this started for me because I΄ve owned mostly chain driven bikes, and while I put the bike on the stand, and do the maintenance on the chain, that has also been a perfect opportunity to check, that all visible parts appear to be ok as well. Especially important, if you do a lot of bumpy roads, because something may be working its way loose. For this reason, I also hop aboard, grab the front brake, and shake the handlebar back and forth a bit, there΄s a good chance to hear, if anything is loose.
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Old 10-18-2013, 06:39 AM   #14
oldmanb777
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Take your time, enjoy, relax. Plan to stop early every night. That takes the pressure out of finding a place for the night, and gives you opportunity enjoy the local "flavor" of where you are at. Remember you are on a backpacking trip, just doing it on 2 wheels.
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:19 AM   #15
Virtual Rider
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Originally Posted by oldmanb777 View Post
Take your time, enjoy, relax. Plan to stop early every night. That takes the pressure out of finding a place for the night, and gives you opportunity enjoy the local "flavor" of where you are at. Remember you are on a backpacking trip, just doing it on 2 wheels.
Very good advice. I backpack as well and the similarities are plentiful. Stop and enjoy a stream or river, chat with a roadside vendor and buy something from them (doesn't matter what), ask a local where to eat. You're already in the right frame of mind. Go have fun and stay safe.

Oh, at least once you need to have crap from a convenience store for lunch while sitting on the curb. If you haven't done that then you're not done with your trip yet.
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