This is my first ride report, but second in our series of circumnavigating a Great Lake. Last year Tom and I rode around Lake Huron
, this time around is Lake Superior.
We are planning to leave July 4th depending on the weather. Last year we left in a large rain storm and vowed to wait it out if our time was as imperfect this year. Five day out and the weather is looking promising for our 1st day.
Here is our planned route. Ignore the letter bubbles, they are only so I could tell Google Maps where to draw the route. We are planning to take our time, 7-8 days, not scheduling more than 250 miles in a day. We will be camping the entire trip unless we hit a major storm and elect to seek the warmth of a motel for the night. We are going to try to update the ride report every day so you can follow along on our adventure.
I live in London, Ontario and Tom lives in a suburb north of Detroit. We will meet in Imlay City, a small town about halfway between the US/Canada border and the City of Flint. We don't ride typical advriderís bikes (at least not yet!). I ride a Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Classic and Tom a HD Heritage Softail Classic. We enjoy our cruisers and think they are perfect for these types of trips.
I picked up my Vulcan over the winter and have been getting it ready all spring for this trip. I installed a set of hard saddle bags, backrest, luggage rack, a new seat, and recently completed a change out of both my front and rear pulleys. Anyone who has owned a Vulcan 900 knows that its only major flaw is a uncomfortable vibration at highway cruising speeds. The bike really needed to be engineered with a 6th gear. The solution is to change the gear ratios by replacing the pulleys.
Old Front Pulley
New Front Pulley
Old Rear Pulley
New Rear Pulley
Now with the pulleys all set, my bike is ready for the trip.
Tom has been working away at modifying a handlebar camera mount that he bought this winter. It allows him to attach a regular digital camera so we can take pictures while in motion.
Next step in preparation is to collect all of the gear and see what we have room for. I am a Scout leader and thus get to see lots of different tents and camping supplies. I bought some new gear this winter that is more suited to carrying on the bike. Including a new backpacking tent and this funky chair (an Alite Monarch Butterfly, yes it only has two legs. I will post of pic of it in action while we are riding along)
Here is all my gear ready to go.
I decided it would be prudent to try fitting everything on the Vulcan and going for a quick test spin and see how the load feels
Now we just wait for Thursday!!