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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
This would be awesome practice! And if you ever want a guide around the Adirondacks, Catskills, or Green Mountains just hit me up. I am right in Albany, NY and recently was in that neck of the woods for an amazing (albeit short) ride.
Thanks StreamRider. Mentioned earlier in this thread, last year I did a few long days (miles and hours) as part of a 13 day 6400 mile trip out west. That's no regular occurrence for me and is the most distance I've done in that period of time. It was a blast but was not all freeway driving, and there were 3 of us for the entire trip, 4 for part of it.

Although physically in good shape I am no endurance rider and far from a bad ass. The FJR is capable of a lot more than I ask it to do. I really enjoy 8-10 hour days with a small group of low key riders. Not one for large group rides. I've probably done a few ~12 hour days, at least one or two last year between the other days. I can't imagine 24 or 36 hours on a motorcycle. I get it though. I enjoy long distance running. Many do not.

One of the guys I ride with has done a few solo longer trips and has combined a 900 mile day with 600 mile days. He was encouraging me to give it a go based on 5 days out, 5 back with a buffer. I think with the constraints I now have it's going to be too much with too many risks. Simply put I need to be back in MA June 17 and can't start until June 3. When I was originally planning the trip I had more of a potential buffer at the end of the trip that would have allowed me at a minimum 3 more days. Even with that given the feedback I think I would probably reconsider.

Now that the road trip is probably out maybe I'll change my plans for Friday and ride some slower but more fun roads. Western MA / Vermont has some nice roads but I hear Rt. 9 in VT turned into mess this past winter. Nothing like Wyoming, Montana (the FJR and I loved Lolo pass!) and Idaho but fun enough.

Anyway, thanks again to everyone for listening and for the feedback. This community is great. If anyone has further relevant experiences, thoughts or ideas you're willing to share please feel free. It's interesting to hear what others have done and think.
 

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I think a cross country trip like you describe will be one you can talk about forever. 700 miles a day is doable but not sure about stopping at 2pm. That time of year you will still have 7 hours of daylight. I use booking.com to hunt for rooms in smaller towns away from the megaopolis'. It will be vacation time so any towns around national landmarks could be tough for a room. Avoid staying in Flagstaff then. Going through Denver is always fun but theh drive from Denver to Colorado Springs is like a 60 mile school zone. There are ways around the traffic with some planning. Gas stations should not be a problem on the FJR. Paying for it may be!
Traveling solo you can make so much better time versus stopping with a group for 30 minute to an hour gas stops. The FJR should get you there and back trouble free. Just leave with new shoes and you should be fine.
Best of luck however you chose.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
I think a cross country trip like you describe will be one you can talk about forever. 700 miles a day is doable but not sure about stopping at 2pm. That time of year you will still have 7 hours of daylight. I use booking.com to hunt for rooms in smaller towns away from the megaopolis'. It will be vacation time so any towns around national landmarks could be tough for a room. Avoid staying in Flagstaff then. Going through Denver is always fun but theh drive from Denver to Colorado Springs is like a 60 mile school zone. There are ways around the traffic with some planning. Gas stations should not be a problem on the FJR. Paying for it may be!
Traveling solo you can make so much better time versus stopping with a group for 30 minute to an hour gas stops. The FJR should get you there and back trouble free. Just leave with new shoes and you should be fine.
Best of luck however you chose.
That was part of the draw, the memory which would hopefully be mostly good. :) Also the challenge. I think it'd need to be 10-12 hour days for sure and I agree, plenty of daylight. I didn't realize Denver / Colorado Springs would be like that, it would for sure mean a longer day. I'm not sure I'd know enough or want to find another route on the fly.

I was hopeful early June would be before school is out but it is on the cusp of that time for sure. Yeah, gas is crazy expensive right now. I think I heard it reported that today was an all time high for Massachusetts.

Agree about riding solo. With groups a lot of the stops we make take at least twice as long as I would need to, and I also seem to be the first awake and ready to go about an hour before anyone else. I don't mind that because it gives me some quiet peaceful time by myself. There also a lot of stops for photos and stuff that I wouldn't necessarily make too unless I had time to burn. I still prefer to ride with the small group of people I ride with for companionship and safety.

I think I'm going to sleep on it and probably look at flights tomorrow. I may end up kicking myself - there was a JetBlue flight from Boston to LAX for about $550 yesterday. Probably be $750 today!
 

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Looking at it as a challenge is healthy. Just do it when you don't have a hard start and hard end date. Good luck!
 
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Thanks StreamRider. Mentioned earlier in this thread, last year I did a few long days (miles and hours) as part of a 13 day 6400 mile trip out west. That's no regular occurrence for me and is the most distance I've done in that period of time. It was a blast but was not all freeway driving, and there were 3 of us for the entire trip, 4 for part of it.

Although physically in good shape I am no endurance rider and far from a bad ass. The FJR is capable of a lot more than I ask it to do. I really enjoy 8-10 hour days with a small group of low key riders. Not one for large group rides. I've probably done a few ~12 hour days, at least one or two last year between the other days. I can't imagine 24 or 36 hours on a motorcycle. I get it though. I enjoy long distance running. Many do not.

One of the guys I ride with has done a few solo longer trips and has combined a 900 mile day with 600 mile days. He was encouraging me to give it a go based on 5 days out, 5 back with a buffer. I think with the constraints I now have it's going to be too much with too many risks. Simply put I need to be back in MA June 17 and can't start until June 3. When I was originally planning the trip I had more of a potential buffer at the end of the trip that would have allowed me at a minimum 3 more days. Even with that given the feedback I think I would probably reconsider.

Now that the road trip is probably out maybe I'll change my plans for Friday and ride some slower but more fun roads. Western MA / Vermont has some nice roads but I hear Rt. 9 in VT turned into mess this past winter. Nothing like Wyoming, Montana (the FJR and I loved Lolo pass!) and Idaho but fun enough.

Anyway, thanks again to everyone for listening and for the feedback. This community is great. If anyone has further relevant experiences, thoughts or ideas you're willing to share please feel free. It's interesting to hear what others have done and think.
My apologies, I often think I read an entire thread and miss out on a few details... That's a long trip! and longer then anything I have ever done. My math and mentality is far different then any trip like that. Although those kind of trips are a lot of peoples bread-and-butter (and that is totally cool) I ride my trips on a constant time crunch. If I plan a trip I really only have maximum of 3 days to accomplish it. (5 year old daughter problems) The most I have been able to do in that amount of time is a little over 2700 and that was grueling. The final leg (poorly planned by yours truly) was a night ride through NJ and then up I87 home and I was stopping every 45 mins or so and splashing water on my face and slapping myself. I swear I stopped a Ramapo, Plattekill, Malden and New Baltimore travel areas, in that order, and complained about Starbucks being closed at all 4 of them. I lied in bed still riding my bike in the dark in my dreams for the next 13 hours before I picked her up at 4pm the next day, I could barely walk. That was a couple years ago before I knew any better and the worst part was I messed up my documentation, forgot two receipts and "ruined" the entire ride because I was exhausted and not using all of my brain. I lived though and in the end that is all that matters. Personally I think riding with people over long distances slows you down but on a trip like you mentioned would not be a bad thing. In a case like mine having someone to talk to might have helped keep me stay more sane, if they could keep up. ;)

Look on the bright side, if you ride to Nashville you will get a lot of miles in AND you will get more time spent with family. Not to mention a break from the bike. When you do you will look forward to the ride instead of seeing it as a chore.

As for Rt 9 from the summit of Hogback till you hit West Brattleboro is being resurfaced and is grooved. About 10 miles.
 

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Much to my astonishment, all of my riding gear fit into one large checked bag. That includes riding boots, XXL helmet, leather pants, jacket, small tail bag, tank bag. My other checked bag had my two pannier liners filled with wick away clothes for 17 days. You will want a mesh jacket for SoCal for sure. I’d be happy to PM my SoCal road list upon request.
 

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700 miles per day would be rough. I consistently do 400-500 days back to back over a week but even that is getting harder as I age. Time to slow and steel the roses I guess. Riding to Nashville and flying sounds like a plan. My girlfriend and I would do 6000 miles over 20 days and that was almost perfect. I would also be concerned about the rear tire at 6,000 miles
 

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Thanks...how did you handle getting your riding gear out to Vegas? Would you put your gear in a suitcase and check luggage?
They're probably not PERFECT, but I've had extremely good luck with Ridershare.

I hate to talk you out of the achievement of such a ride, but yeah, I think others have shared my same concerns about it... that it just would be so 'interstate heavy' that it might just not be fun.

My airport trick is to pack my heavy boots, gloves, aerostich/gear (yes, there's some cool weather in the mountains around NorCal and SoCal, best to be dressed for it and vent open if you need to) clothes and my portable GPS bike mount that I can clip on the rental bike... all in a big ass rolling bag so I can handle some walking between mass transit options.

In my underseat carry-on is my expensive helmet that I don't trust baggage handlers not to crush or even cause invisible damage to it...

This way, I can jet in and be able to walk a couple of miles from a mass transit stop to a bike rental... where they will happily agree to keep the big ass rolling bag and I put the other stuff in the saddlebags or a backpack. That way I can skip the need to juggle a rental car. But I've also done it the lazy way and taken the economy rental car when that was more convenient.

I used to carry the GPS mounting stuff in the carry-on... and the puzzled looks from the X-ray TSA folks was a little unsettling if not slightly amusing. Now I pack it like eggs in the big luggage or put it inside a boot. In the past, I've had some pretty sturdy stuff smashed to pieces inside checked luggage, but they aren't gonna smash boots and an Aerostich..

Anyway, that's all the tricks I can think of. :)
 

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If you want to do it go for it. I have done back to back 1200 mile days and multiple 1000 mile days in a row and I'm not a monster when it comes to miles. I know those guys and I'm not one of them. I still love being out there and doing it. Point is you can do it if you want. Make a plan and keep to it. That includes planning to drink and planned rest stops in the ac to cool down. Running long distance on the interstate is pretty easy these days, there's plenty of places to stop and gas up. I don't manage heat well so I make it a point to stay hydrated and sometimes travel with a bag of ice inside my jacket against my core to keep me cool. If you're planning to travel at night get some aux lights, there's critters than wonder onto the road at night in the SW.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Much to my astonishment, all of my riding gear fit into one large checked bag. That includes riding boots, XXL helmet, leather pants, jacket, small tail bag, tank bag. My other checked bag had my two pannier liners filled with wick away clothes for 17 days. You will want a mesh jacket for SoCal for sure. I’d be happy to PM my SoCal road list upon request.
Interesting. I was reluctant to put at least my helmet in a suitcase, at least the suitcase I have. It's soft sided and I worry stuff including the helmet would get damaged. Good to know that's an option for the future if I buy a better suitcase. Maybe I'll try to plan something during the winter months.

Last night I booked a flight on JetBlue, had to pay extra for a carry on. I'm not going to check a bag, only going for 5 days total and am flying to San Diego where I'll be picked up by family. That means no bike which I am a bit disappointed in (and no rental car which I am happy about). I'll be spending all the time with family. I'm really disappointed about not riding out but this is probably the right decision. Also disappointed about not renting a bike while out there but I will have some time off when I return to MA for some riding.

The group I ride with is talking about Blue Ridge next year. I've never been so if I don't get a long trip in this year at least I'll have that to look forward to.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
I would add to Donk's thoughts to seriously consider investing in some LDComfort items. Definitely helps with irritations and easy to clean each night but also works surprisingly well to keep you cool. Just need to get past the idea of wide open vents and enjoy puring water down your neck and sleeves.
I do have some wicking base layers but I don't think it's of the quality above. I will seriously consider a pair even just for day trips around here. The humidity can get uncomfortable for us northerners here in the summer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 · (Edited)
If you want to do it go for it. I have done back to back 1200 mile days and multiple 1000 mile days in a row and I'm not a monster when it comes to miles. I know those guys and I'm not one of them. I still love being out there and doing it. Point is you can do it if you want. Make a plan and keep to it. That includes planning to drink and planned rest stops in the ac to cool down. Running long distance on the interstate is pretty easy these days, there's plenty of places to stop and gas up. I don't manage heat well so I make it a point to stay hydrated and sometimes travel with a bag of ice inside my jacket against my core to keep me cool. If you're planning to travel at night get some aux lights, there's critters than wonder onto the road at night in the SW.
Good God, back to back 1200 mile days! I don't know if I could do that. Good advice about making a plan and sticking to it. I had a few routes I picked out in BaseCamp. My idea was to hit those times at a minimum and if I could make it further it would mean more options the following days. Ideally I don't like to travel after dusk. That's one of the good things about riding this time of year, all the daylight.

I do have a major concern about heat/dehydration especially where there's a lack of humidity. I just don't feel that hot when moving (slow and in traffic is another story) and I really need to make a conscious effort to drink. One of the earlier comments about people from this area (MA) not understanding or having recent experience with the south west heat/humidity really made me think about the risks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
This guy Motorcycle Rental Information – Bikers West is right by LAX and rents motorcycles right out of his home. I've rented from him before and it was super-easy. I live in the area so hit me up if you're looking for some great roads to ride while here.
Nice, he rents Goldwings and the price isn't too bad. Always wanted to test ride one of those. With the discussion on this thread I may plan a future trip out there with a more balanced goal of riding and family. Always good to have a reference. I may hit people up for their road ideas if that time comes, thanks for the offer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
700 miles per day would be rough. I consistently do 400-500 days back to back over a week but even that is getting harder as I age. Time to slow and steel the roses I guess. Riding to Nashville and flying sounds like a plan. My girlfriend and I would do 6000 miles over 20 days and that was almost perfect. I would also be concerned about the rear tire at 6,000 miles
For me I think ~500 miles is a sweet spot when we ride as a group. I was hopeful I could push that to ~700-800 solo. Believe it or not the rear tire I now (Angel GT 'A' spec) has almost 7k on it. Still has probably 1-2k more miles in it. Front a bit less life left. Has the same miles on it (7k) but I think I will maybe get 1k more out of it.

At any rate I like to keep a close watch on the tires all the time. I know to each his own about tires but I gota say that the Angels are much better for me and the way I ride than the set of tires that came on the bike when I bought it at ~4k miles. Front was a PR4, rear a Battlaxe. The Angels are not cheap but I really like them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
They're probably not PERFECT, but I've had extremely good luck with Ridershare.

I hate to talk you out of the achievement of such a ride, but yeah, I think others have shared my same concerns about it... that it just would be so 'interstate heavy' that it might just not be fun.

My airport trick is to pack my heavy boots, gloves, aerostich/gear (yes, there's some cool weather in the mountains around NorCal and SoCal, best to be dressed for it and vent open if you need to) clothes and my portable GPS bike mount that I can clip on the rental bike... all in a big ass rolling bag so I can handle some walking between mass transit options.

In my underseat carry-on is my expensive helmet that I don't trust baggage handlers not to crush or even cause invisible damage to it...

This way, I can jet in and be able to walk a couple of miles from a mass transit stop to a bike rental... where they will happily agree to keep the big ass rolling bag and I put the other stuff in the saddlebags or a backpack. That way I can skip the need to juggle a rental car. But I've also done it the lazy way and taken the economy rental car when that was more convenient.

I used to carry the GPS mounting stuff in the carry-on... and the puzzled looks from the X-ray TSA folks was a little unsettling if not slightly amusing. Now I pack it like eggs in the big luggage or put it inside a boot. In the past, I've had some pretty sturdy stuff smashed to pieces inside checked luggage, but they aren't gonna smash boots and an Aerostich..

Anyway, that's all the tricks I can think of. :)
I like that idea about the helmet under the seat, kind of surprised it'd fit there. Also about leaving your bag with the motorcycle rental place. Great ideas!
 

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Blue ridge parkway, skyline drive, the dragon and on to Nashville. Fly to Cali and rent there too, then ride home. Enjoy the ride and don’t rush. Safe travels to ya!
 

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@jspicoli

Perhaps you could ship your helmet and gloves to your family, wear your boots (and/or jacket) on the plane. Rent a motorcycle and enjoy some great riding out
on the left coast. :unsure:
 
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Where in MA are you from? I'm Boston born and raised living in WI where my wife's from.

Here's a strange tip about riding in heat. Over 100 degrees close all you vents on your jacket. The hot air blowing by doesn't cool you it only cooks and dehydrates you faster. I force myself to drink tons of water with electrolytes when its hot even if it means making extra bathroom stops.

A good quality tire can easily do 7000 miles. I ran from Wisconsin to SanDiego to Florida to Wisconsin which was over 7k on a set of PR4GTs and they were still good when I got back.
 
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