Corporate Runaways: BOS -> CO - 2 dogs in a Ural

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by Dachary, Jul 17, 2012.

  1. Dachary

    Dachary Been here awhile

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    Cross-country and back on a 2012 Ural Patrol in the hottest part of the year with two dogs in 17 days? More than 5,000 miles and an international border crossing? Time constraints? Maintenance intervals? And side trips to visit family?

    So begins our test trip driving our new Ural and an F650GS cross-country from Boston to Colorado, carrying our two dogs. If all goes well on this trip, planning for a RTW will kick into high gear!

    How did we get here?

    When our Americas trip was almost over, we were ready for a break from the road. Believe it or not, sleeping in a different place every day, riding 300+ miles everyday and seeing a host of extraordinary sights can actually wear on a body. We traveled 18,000 miles in 114 days, with only 18 rest days - and most of those were spent repairing motorcycles or recovering from being ill. So we were ready to head home at the end of our trip.

    Fortunately (or unfortunately, as the case may be) we only needed a few weeks to recover at home before we began to miss the rhythm of being on the road. Wake up, ride through beautiful landscapes until you get tired, take a break, ride some more, check out whatever cool stuff catches your fancy, and then stop whenever you get tired of riding for the day - or when dark finds you, whichever comes first. It’s hard to adjust to a corporate job and life in a cubicle after 114 days of that kind of freedom.

    So it wasn’t long before we were talking about being on the road again. Next time - the world! Something about Mongolia just caught and held our attention. And of course, there’s a whole world out there to explore - we’d enjoy getting to Mongolia however we routed our trip! Tentative planning for a RTW began, but there was one problem... what would we do with the dogs?

    When we returned home from our Americas trip, we discovered that Kay’s dog was much changed. He was no longer the happy-go-lucky canine who ran up to greet everyone in the park. He was stiff and snappish with strangers, and a year of canine therapy has only partially rehabilitated him. After that experience in leaving our dogs with dog-sitters, I was unwilling to leave them behind again. They had to come with us.

    We looked at various options. Tow trailers behind the F650s like some of the bicycle trailers for kids. Rig up some kind of sidecars for the F650s. For a brief period, we were enamored with the idea of taking Stella scooters with sidecars - they fit our criteria for a ridiculous vehicle and would have been a lot of fun, but Kay has major issues with the Stella’s shifter. Or... maybe we could buy a production sidecar motorcycle? Maybe a Ural?

    We began casually shopping our local Ural dealer. And then we began more than casually considering the idea. The Ural requires FAR more frequent maintenance intervals than our F650s - like every 1,500 miles, which on our Americas trip was about every 5 days... and obviously that was a turn off. Who wants to stop and deal with changing fluids and doing other maintenance so often?

    But we kept coming back to the Ural. The Ural sidecar seemed roomy enough to hold both dogs - if we went with a Stella and a sidecar hack, we’d need two of them to carry both dogs. And with two dogs, would we really be traveling at a particularly fast pace anyway? They’d need frequent rest stops, and we want to do our next RTW at our own pace, with no deadlines, so we could handle doing shorter mileage per day with more frequent rest days. The Ural began to seem like an option that might actually be compatible with our travel style.

    I started lurking on Soviet Steeds, reading everything I could about the Ural’s “known issues,” maintenance requirements and how people generally feel about their beasties. Whatever their faults (of which there seem to be varying degrees, depending on who’s speaking, from the Russian metallurgy to the inability to travel at more than 65MPH) most Ural owners tend to speak very highly of their bikes. These bikes, more than many others I’ve read about, really seem to inspire a lot of love and affection. There was something alluring about the way people seemed to speak of their Urals. It drew me.

    I looked into other sidecar options, including custom hacks for the F650 or other bikes... but the Ural was there with her siren call. The Ural didn’t require an endless and expensive series of tweaks to get the setup and handling just right. It was made to drive a sidecar. It had awesome features, like 2WD (which we think would be very handy in places like Mongolia, where only something like 4% of roads are paved) and a reverse gear. And if we bought a new one, we’d have the advantage of the Ural warranty - 2 years and unlimited miles. More and more attractive.

    After a final trip shopping at our local Ural dealer, we decided to pull the trigger. (At this point, we had still never driven a sidecar rig, or a Ural - the dealer does offer test rides, but every time we were there that wasn’t an option due to various things.) We had no idea if we’d like a sidecar bike, or the Ural in particular, but we took a leap of faith and decided that THIS would be our beast for the RTW trip. We didn’t even know if the dogs would take to riding in a sidecar. This was to be an expensive gamble.

    We placed our order in March for a 2012 Ural Patrol in Blue and White, and after completing a sidecar training course, we took delivery of our new rig at the beginning of May. After a few initial mechanical hurdles, our relationship with the Ural seems to have settled into a comfortable place. It’s a lot of fun to drive, but a lot more work than a two-wheeler. And happily, the dogs have really taken to riding in it! We’ve done many day trips and local rides, a few weekend camping trips... and now is our first big test trip with the dogs in the Ural. If this goes well, we’ll green-light the RTW - hopefully for next year!

    We leave Boston on Thursday, July 19. We’re heading for Colorado, to Lake Granby, for a rally with our other motorcycle tribe - the F650 folks from the Chain Gang. We’re hoping to hit Colorado in a week of travel, bum around for a few days at the rally, and then head back across a different route that takes us into Canada and back home. We’ll be traveling through 17 or 18 states, depending on how we go, and the Canadian province of Ontario, in 17 days. And we’ll be doing it with two dogs on a barely-broken-in 2012 Ural Patrol (we’ve just hit 2,500km!) and my reliable F650GS, now with around 29,000 miles on the clock.

    Sounds like a pretty awesome vacation to us. And maybe we’ll find some adventure along the way.

    [​IMG]
    Nervously ready to board by CorporateRunaways, on Flickr

    [​IMG]
    Doggle-Wearing Dogs by CorporateRunaways, on Flickr
    #1
  2. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    This should be interesting.

    I do have a question. Given that border crossings seem to often be a PITA, at least according to the ride reports I have read, including yours, what's it going to be like with dogs? I would think some countries may not even allow animals.
    #2
  3. lukeman

    lukeman Cool Hand

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    Looking forward to this trip and hopefully the RTW. Don't see to many long rides with dogs, be curious to see how this all turns out. :D
    #3
  4. Dachary

    Dachary Been here awhile

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    It will definitely impact our route for the RTW. Some places require pretty serious documentation, a quarantine period or you just can't get dogs in. We've done some preliminary research, but we didn't want to get too far ahead of ourselves - we'll do a full route mapping once we find out how the dogs do on this Colorado trip.

    Canada, for example, only requires proof of current rabies vaccination. (And Ontario requires that your dog can't be a pit or pit mix.) Other places require a recent medical check from a veterinarian to certify that your dog is healthy, or even special documentation you have to get completed by government-org-certified veterinarians.

    So yeah. I think it'll definitely add an element of complication to border crossings. But when we do the RTW, whether it be soon-ish with the dogs or later after the dogs are no longer with us, we plan to take our time and not have a schedule or a date when we need to get home. So if we're delayed at a border crossing, it really won't be a big deal. *shrug* It's all part of the adventure!
    #4
  5. hdawg

    hdawg Adventurer

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    I'm ready. let the trip began!!!!
    #5
  6. jglow

    jglow Two wheeled traveler

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    :lurk

    I will be watching this one! :thumb

    Been looking for a rig to take our dog with us, and I too keep coming back to the Ural. :nod

    Can't wait to see how it works out for y'all! :ear




    Jordan
    #6
  7. Dirtbauer

    Dirtbauer KB

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    If you come through Indiana would like to meet up with you and get some pics.

    Enjoyed your trip to SA.

    Safe Travels
    #7
  8. SS in Vzla.

    SS in Vzla. Totally Normal? I'm not!

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    One more thing to take into account while traveling with pets is that a lot (most) hotels/motels outside US/Canada/Europe simply do not allow pets... This is one of the things that frustrated me a lot when my dog was still alive, as every time we planned an overland-family-vacation, we had to make a LOT of compromises regarding route and places to stay due to this reason... Lot's of time we simply ended up sneaking the dog (a Golden Retriever) into the room, but something tells me that two dogs on an Ural side-car will not manage to get unnoticed :rofl...

    Have a great trip!
    #8
  9. Dachary

    Dachary Been here awhile

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    We'll be traveling through Central Indiana on the way out. I've got family in Anderson, IN that I intend to visit with on Saturday afternoon/evening. Supposedly some family from Florida will be coming up so we can all get together while I'm passing through, but that was supposed to happen last year, too, and never quite materialized, so… *shrug*

    If yer anywhere near there, drop us a PM and we'll see if we can meet up!

    New Tent: Camping with Dogs

    :evil

    We'll be curious to see how it holds up over the long term, but we've got it covered for now!

    Our current route across the US and Canada has us camping every night except one. Although given how hot it's supposed to be, I wouldn't be surprised if we give up and look for dog-friendly lodging with AC one or more days. We'll have to play it by ear!
    #9
  10. Slug.go

    Slug.go Been here awhile

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    Followed you on your way down South. Then saw your initial woes on SS, gotta sit back and watch this.
    One of the best writers on this site, that'd be you, Dachary.
    #10
  11. rod1

    rod1 Old Australian Bull

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    Hello you two. Good to see you aregoing again and I am very impressed with the Ural. I wish you all luck an happiness and look forward to following your trip. best Wishes. Rod
    #11
  12. opjocephus

    opjocephus Been here awhile

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    Hi Dachary. I am on the near West side of Anderson. If'n you need anything, give me a PM. :thumb

    Joe
    #12
  13. TaZ9

    TaZ9 Happy Adventurer

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    Why would you even consider spending your time and money in a backward thinking place like Ontario. As I'm sure you know, pits and pit mixed dogs are some of the most loyal and loving animals on this planet. For anyone to believe otherwise shows a true lack of education and first hand experience with this amazing breed.

    Other than that, I look forward to following your ride report. I know you and the pups will have a great adventure together.

    Ride safe!

    Taz9
    #13
  14. Joe D

    Joe D Registered User

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    Hi kids
    I am in iowa until sept. Let me know if you are coming close to ft dodge
    Joe deryke
    #14
  15. masukomi

    masukomi Been here awhile

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    We agree that it's pretty insane to have a place that can confiscate and euthanize a someone's pet simply because of the breed. However, Ontario is what we have to go through if we're going to do any of Canada on the trip, and we want to because most of the U.S. is *freaking HOT* right now (please let Canada be cooler), and we'd really rather not come back the same route we go out.

    Honestly, doing *any* of Canada is probably pushing it on this trips' constricted timeframe but...
    #15
  16. masukomi

    masukomi Been here awhile

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    Dachary and I both had plenty of paying work that had to get done yesterday, and we still hadn’t packed the bikes. Fortunately, we had a checklist… a six page checklist. Unfortunately, the checklist didn’t include spare keys, which we didn’t discover until half an hour down the road. Dachary asked if we should go back or be “irresponsible”. I said “fuck it.” I wasn’t going back, but I’m getting a bit ahead of myself.

    Tired from a long day, we packed until probably 11PM and went to bed, before waking up at 5:45. We were both nervous and excited I think. The first order of business was shaving my head. I didn’t want to have to deal with any more hair in my eyes with the helmet on, and fearing the impending temperatures in the midwest I wanted the best opportunity to stay cool. The result is totally dorky looking, and Dachary says I look my age, which is somewhat sad because usually I’m pegged for about 10 years younger. :(

    We showered, packed up the bikes, ate a good breakfast, and finally set out at 11:00 AM. A stop at the ATM (cash is good) and a last minute purchase at REI (collapsable bowls to save space) and we were finally, officially, on the highway at noon with no reason to stop beyond food and gas.

    [​IMG]

    The highway was… highway. Having gotten a late start we wanted to make up for lost time and took the toll filled I90 west.

    We ate lunch at one of those on-the-highway “service areas” where we met a couple out camping for the weekend in a station-wagon packed to the gills with gods only know what. The bikes and dogs also got fluids. The Ural was especially thirsty.

    A little ways down the road and we saw three fire engines, a bunch of troopers, smoke billowing, and geysers of water being sprayed at it. A tractor-trailer had caught fire, and gotten so hot that it managed to leave nothing but a pile of slag and… whatever it is that you call the thing your wheels mount on to.

    [​IMG]

    A few minutes after that the Ural ran out of fuel in the main tube and Dachary had to reach down and flip the petcock while driving. Fortunately, she is a wise and observant woman who had predicted this just after the fire, and had found the petcock switch and practiced flipping it while riding before she actually needed to.

    We have a roto-pax with a gallon of spare gas, and the shoulders were pretty wide in that part of NY so I wasn’t too concerned. Mostly I’m concerned about the fact that the range on this thing is absolute crap, and fueling it is going to be inordinately expensive. I don’t think there’s any way we can do around-the-world in this without installing a fuel-cell or carrying a lot of spare jerry-cans.

    On our penultimate gas stop we encountered Marty Sullivan and his band of intrepid National Guardsmen (and woman). Actually, I’ve no clue what Marty’s rank was relative to anyone else’s there. But, we’d found shade, and one of their trucks had broken down, so they joined us and we chatted for a bit.

    [​IMG]

    We love these random encounters with interesting people, but we were already running behind and had miles to go, so we politely excused ourselves and suited up. One unexpected discovery during this rest stop was a pair of clip-on sunglasses for me. I lost the old-people over-glasses glasses that I was using previously, so I was pretty excited about this. They are of course shaped like your classic cop-style sunglasses, which combined with my new haircut looks totally…. something. Dachary hasn’t seen them yet.

    As 7pm approached we’d done nearly 300 miles and were passing through the towns just before the campground and feeling really grossed out. We did not like these places at all and I was scared the “campground” was just going to be some lot behind an industrial plant with a pile of RV’s on rocks, but the buildings gave way to trees, our hopes started rising, and we found a surprisingly decent campground. The only weirdness, besides wanting to actually see the rabies certs. for the dogs, is that the gate closes along with the office at 8PM and there’s no getting back in unless you’re a permanent resident (all RV campgrounds have permanent residents as far as I can tell). This isn’t such a problem for the BMW but the Ural just doesn’t fit around the gate.

    Dachary and I threw the tent up, and I took off to find food at a local restaurant while she finished setting up camp, because we were just too bushed to deal with cooking.

    The chicken I grabbed from Pete’s Chicken turns out to be the best damn chicken either of us have tasted. This isn’t just good chicken. It’s “Fucking Good” chicken. It’s excellent. I wouldn’t drive 300 miles to get it again, and the towns preceding it are scary, but if you happen to be in the area…. it’s good.

    That’s about it for the night, beyond discovering that we’d also forgotten to bring AAA batteries or put any in our tent light, which is a bit of a luxury we admit, but it’s very nice to have when you’ve got to sit around typing up a post and reading your notes from the day in the dark.

    Dachary’s note:UDF, or Ural Delay Factor, is something we’ve already experienced with our rig… but it appears to be amplified by the dogs, all the gear and the custom sidecar cover. When we stopped at REI to pick up collapsible bowls, I stayed with the rig and the dogs, and we met Peter (Motorcycle Marketing Resources - MMRsite.com). He was very interested in the rig, and we had a pleasant chat.

    When we stopped for gas/lunch, we met a couple on their way to a bluegrass festival in NY (whose names, I stupidly did not get)… and when we stopped for another gas break (the Ural takes a lot of gas!) we met Marty Sullivan and his fellow National Guardsmen that Kay mentioned above. Lots of pleasant chats with friendly, interesting people… we love the interactions with people, as it’s these encounters you remember long after the trip - but I forget to account for the extra time.
    #16
  17. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    Masukomi, we need a pic so we can judge for ourselves how dorky your haircut and sunglasses look. Maybe we'll rate this thread based on how you look:rofl
    #17
  18. ST RIDER

    ST RIDER Adventurer

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    Hi you two!

    Glad to see you are on the move again. I am going to be in the Denver area from July 28th to around August 6th. If you get a chance try to track me down. I will email you my cell #.

    In April, a couple that had met you - Sandra and Jordan from Calgary - stopped by my house with their 650s to do a little maintainence and as we were talking your names came up. What a small world.

    Have fun - Hope to see you.

    Vern
    #18
  19. Dachary

    Dachary Been here awhile

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    Day 2 - Endicott, NY to Youngstown, OH


    Rain tap-tap-tapping on our tent woke me this morning, bright and early. So early, in fact, that while I really wanted to make a trip to the bathroom building, I didn't feel like dealing with the dogs. And when we're up, they're up. So I tossed and turned for a while trying to convince my bladder that I was still asleep, until I glanced over and saw Kay doing a similar dance and gave up. By then it was around 6AM.

    We took turns wandering off to the bathroom building, since we had only brought one umbrella and the rain was coming down pretty steadily. And then Kay, being the trooper that he is (and the second one to go to the bathroom - hence he was already out of the tent with the umbrella) walked the dogs. And when he brought them back, we discovered how woefully inadequate our little REI pack towels are for wet dogs. And how quickly the smell of wet dogs permeates a tent, however palatial.

    Putzed around re-packing things in the tent for a while in the vain hope that it would stop raining. The weather radar LOOKED like the rain would end in 10 or 15 minutes... for 2 hours. By the time 8 AM rolled around, we'd re-packed and re-arranged everything we could, and we'd torn down everything short of packing out from the tent. I volunteered for that duty, since I'm better at tetris-ing things into the panniers than Kay is. And then there was nothing left but the tent full of two dogs, a Kay and our motorcycle jackets. And it was still raining steadily.

    We bundled the dogs directly into the sidecar where they could stay dry under our nifty custom cover. And yes, it was dry! They patiently waited while we tore down the tent, and packed it wet, since we couldn't really do much about the rain. And then they waited patiently while we packed out the garbage and left the campground. And waited patiently some more while we rode to the gas station, gassed up and put air in the rear tire of the Ural, since we didn't feel like tearing everything apart to get to our Cycle Pump in the rain. And then we were off! Sadly, in spite of our intention to get an early start, it was nearly 10 AM by the time we were packed, gassed and ready to ride.

    And wet.

    We rode for a while. The GPS routed us on state highways that were quite pretty, for a while. We rode through a part of New York that was hilly and verdant, with speeds in the 40-55 MPH range - which is exactly in the Ural's wheelhouse. The morning passed pleasantly, but by 11:30AM, we still hadn't had breakfast and the Ural wanted more gas, so we stopped at a gas station that claimed to have food thinking we'd grab something and get back on the road fairly quickly.[​IMG]


    A couple of small pizzas for us (think microwave personal-pan style) and a couple of hot dogs for the dogs, who hadn't eaten much kibble in the past 24 hours, and I went back inside for water for our Camelbaks before we left. When I came back out, we shared a muffin with the dogs and started to gear up when a gent named Bob moseyed up. He came over to chat about the bikes - he had a Triumph that he liked to tinker with - and we ended up chatting with him about the area. I told him I thought it seemed like a great area (it was really beautiful) and he told us about how the gas companies have caused some political conflict in the town. On the one hand, it gave the town work and boosted the economy in a time when many places were dying. But on the other hand, it's a gas company and there's some unpleasantness going on...

    It just reminded me of some of the things we encountered in South America where we felt people were being exploited... Bob was telling us that some of the stuff went into practically everything, from plastic to pieces of the motorcycles to... pretty much everything. I felt a little disgusted thinking about how consumer-driven our society is, and how our need to constantly "buy, buy, buy" stuff supports this type of exploitation and depletion of our natural resources. All so someone can have a plastic bottle of water. Or an XBOX. When we first got back from the trip, we were pretty anti-consumer. We got rid of a bunch of stuff. But in the past year, that attitude has shifted again and we've gone back to accruing stuff. At least this time, it's motorcycle and travel related... but it reminded me of how easy it is to go back to one's old ways and lose awareness of things like this going on all over the world. Not just in South America, but right here in Pennsylvania.

    Anywho, by the time we were done chatting with Bob, it was 12:45 and we'd barely made it 80 miles. It was time to make tracks. We were heading for a campground that was 385 miles from where we stayed last night, so we still had 300+ miles to go and it was almost 1PM. That did not seem good.

    The rest of the day was spent going in and out of rain bursts. For a while, it was pretty. The mist was light so the moisture wasn't too bad, but the steam rising from the hills around us was just beautiful. I enjoyed it. I would vastly prefer that type of day to 100+ degrees that we're anticipating when we get out to places like Nebraska. We kept the sidecar fully enclosed, which the dogs didn't particularly enjoy - they vastly prefer it when they can stick their head out and see what's going by - but it kept them dry.

    Eventually we hit I-80, which we were to take for something like 180 miles before the GPS gave us any alternate instructions (and I think at that point it was just to stay right onto I-80). So it got real boring, real fast. And right when we got on I-80, we started encountering road works... the first one of which it took us 40 minutes of driving 5-10 MPH to get through. Which is very bad for an air-cooled bike like the Ural. At one point, we pulled over onto the shoulder and let it sit for a bit because Kay thought the engine was making some odd sounds and we were concerned it might be getting too hot. We bought an IR thermometer to check engine temps on the Ural, since we don't actually have an engine oil thermometer (it's on our list of things to buy) so we pulled a temp and the right cylinder was reading around 350 degrees. That's only about 25 degrees hotter than it was yesterday after a stretch of interstate, so we were a bit reassured, but we waited a bit longer before heading back into the fray.[​IMG]


    'Dido decided to get in on the wet action at one point during the day. When it was only lightly misting, we left one of the side covers up to give them some fresh air. While the insides stayed dry, Bandido insisted on sticking his head out into the wind, leaving him with half a wet face. Needless to say, we rolled that side back down at the next stop.

    By around 3:30PM, we stopped for an emergency bathroom break and I realized we weren't going to make it to the campground. We still had around 215 miles to cover at that point. At Ural speeds, we'd be pushing it to make that in 3.5-4 hours... and that doesn't count the stops to fill up the Ural every 80-100 miles (yes, it's a gas hog). So it would be after dark by the time we hit the campground. I made an executive decision to just try to get as far toward Anderson, IN as we could (my stop for tomorrow, where I have family to visit) and then try to find a hotel. Kay agreed, so we hit the road again. More rain.

    At some point in all this, the Ural seems to have had a bump in the power/performance department. It was having trouble pulling up hills yesterday and this morning - going uphill on the interstate, we'd drop from 65MPH down to about 60 or even 55 on some of the steeper inclines - but when Kay was driving it this afternoon, it seemed to be able to maintain a steady speed or to scrub speed more slowly uphill. And on our last few fillups, it seemed to take less fuel! I haven't crunched the numbers yet, but it seems like the Ural may have hit one of those magic break-in spots where things get a nice little bonus.

    At around 8PM, we stopped for gas for the Ural and there happened to be like 6 or 8 hotels at this exit... so we decided to call it a day. There was still probably 30 minutes of light left, but we didn't know how far it would be to find a hotel again, and with 6-8 we had a reasonable chance that at least one would take dogs... so we decided to be opportunistic and call it a day. We'd been on the road for 10 hours. Been up and moving around for 14. And we still had a crap-ton of stuff we wanted to get done tonight. I'm a little disappointed to not be camping tonight, but I think the dry bed and the hot shower (and being able to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night without having to walk the dogs, too) will compensate.

    Oh - and remember how we rode in the rain all day? And woke up in the rain? Well, things are pretty wet. It looks we exploded across the hotel room with all the wet stuff we've got stretched out to dry. And our tent that got put away wet? I came up with a creative way to dry it...[​IMG]


    Bonus: it totally conceals the bikes. Who needs a cover?
    #19
  20. masukomi

    masukomi Been here awhile

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    Cambridge, MA
    Day 2 - followup

    A few things to add

    1) The Pine Hill campground place had a shower system was either ingenious or sadistic. I’m not sure which. You pulled a chain which caused water to come out. The water was connected directly to the hot water heater. The longer you pulled the hotter it got. Pretty soon you’d pull for a quick half-second blast scrub, pull, scrub, repeat until clean. I’ve never used so little water in a shower.

    2) Yesterday’s drive in the rain. What with paying for a new Ural, and saving up to feed it’s gas addiction on this trip, a few things didn’t get purchased. One was hand guards. Partially because of money, partially because the only ones we know that fit it for certain are just plastic that would crumple should they actually be called in to use as protective devices. The other was rain gloves. Specifically the Rev`It H20 gloves of awesome that Dachary already has.

    We’ve both ridden with wet summer gloves before, and consider it a non-issue but I think it’s been quite a while since I rode all day with cool wet gloves. It sapped my energy all day long. I was fighting to stay awake on the road, caught myself taking 2 micro-naps during the day very bad thing. By dinner time I was cold, and whiney. When we got off the bikes Dachary asked my why my fingers were all “pruney”. She’d been wearing summer gloves all day and her hands weren’t “pruney”. The difference, of course, was that she had hand-guards. After dinner she leant me her rain gloves and my mood got so much better. I think it helped me keep the energy imparted by lunch too.

    3) My headset crapped the bed yesterday too. Kept turning off. We know it’s not a lack of energy, because the Scala Rider’s have crazy-good battery life. I suspect it’s rain related. Dachary disagrees because we’ve never had them repeatedly shut off in the rain. We’ll find out Saturday.

    4 ) The towels never did dry from the first night. Too much humidity in the air.

    5) On a non-water-related note: Dido’s totally going back to his street-dog roots. On hot sunny days when we let them out of the sidecar he’s instantly trying to get under it for shade (not that the cover doesn’t also provide good shade). He’s digesting the street food better than the normal home food. And, he’s totally comfortable with this changing environment. He just looks for something soft and curls up on it without a worry.
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