Here are some tips on taking long trips on a motorcycle.

Gear to take with you:

  • Riding gear, at least Helmet and goggles, or goggles depending where you live…
  • Rain Gear
  • A nice sized First-Aid kit.
  • Bungee cords/straps, these are nice for securing your load better or if you pick up something later.
  • Minimal amount of tools, to at least take out spark plugs, or remove battery. I carry an allen set, ratchet and sockets required for most of the parts I would need to reach.
  • Decent size saddlebags. Optionally depending on the size of your bike and the amount you want to take with you or bring back, tailbag, tankbag, and a backpack.
  • Water, and snacks. Stop as often as needed, eat a snack, and drink some water, this will prevent dehydration, which will prevent you from making mistakes.
  • Clothes, I can pack simply… For a one week trip I can pack, 1 pair of pants, 3-4 pairs of socks, 3-4 shirts, and depending on the weather 1-2 warm shirts…. I know that sounds dirty but seriously, if you’re a biker you don’t even need half of this :).
  • Camera.
  • Extra batteries.
  • Charger for phone.
  • Maps or GPS.
  • Credit Cards, some cash, and change.
  • Your brain.
  • Finally, Fender fluff, of course this means packing some more.

Before the trip, change your oil, check the air filter, check your brakes and check your tires. Making sure everything that needs grease has grease, and prepare yourself for a nice long ride. If your bike is well maintained, you shouldn’t run into any issues. Let your friends know where your going, about where you should be on a day-to-day basis and maybe use a smart phone with a GPS tracking software like Google Latitude, so people can see where you are, it puts people’s mind at rest when they can see your still moving.

The day before you leave, pack your bike, make sure everything is going to fit and make adjustments. Also if you know where your going to be, you can ship your stuff to where your going, of course the stuff you’re not going to need while on the road. It also goes in reverse, buy a bunch of extra stuff, ship it back home, no reason to load your bike down with more stuff.

Seriously if you have a very limited amount of space, or none, you can buy clothing while on the go. I believe you can survive with the clothes on your back for a few days, the only thing I make sure to change daily or if they get wet are my socks, gotta take care of them feet.

Im one of those people who believe “Trailers are for boats”, however one thing i’ve learned from my experience going to Daytona Beach, figure on doing 300-400 miles a day, 600-900 miles is way to much for one day, it took a major toll on wife and I. Take enough time to enjoy the scenery make frequent stops, take a break.

Anyway you look at it, take the most important things with you, lose or ship the rest. Enjoy yourself and the environment around you.

 

Nick R.