ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 07-05-2014, 12:53 PM   #1
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
Street Triple Hits the Road

I donít like to plan. I donít like to prepare either. I like to just jump in to something when and where I feel like it and have everything turn out for the best.

Sound like a smart guy, donít I?

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

Given that the above rarely works well when riding motorcycles, I have taken to saying I prefer simply to prepare and leave the planning for other suckers people who enjoy such things Ö and who are on other trips Ö because hereís the other thing about me, I enjoy being alone with my thoughts. Concentrating on them even.

Thatís why I have taken this break between jobs to do some riding. That, and I just spent about 60-80 hours a week for the past 5 years working 2 very demanding jobs, selling a condo that had a deed rider with both Boston municipal and Massachusetts state agencies (it was absolute hell), and then moving 2,000 miles to Austin, TX.

Basically, Iím out of breath and in need of some freedom.

So here is the very loose plan if youíd like to follow along with me. I have a family reunion to attend in Arkansas for a few days. Tomorrow Iím going to meet my wife and puppy there. After thatís over, Iím going riding Ö somewhere Ö with an end point about 3 weeks later in Colorado where my wife and puppy will again meet me and we will spend 2 weeks there at a cabin in the mountains just enjoying life.

After that I donít have a job lined up, so if I still feel like it, Iím going to keep going. Again, I have no idea where Iíll wind up or how long I will stay on the road.

If that sounds like a good time to you, follow along and see what happens!

Iíll post later with a few pics of the bike and my load out. Theyíre both a little special, IMO.
__________________
Looking for the right road.
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2014, 05:48 PM   #2
jese
n00b
 
Joined: Feb 2013
Oddometer: 9
I'm in
jese is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2014, 09:23 PM   #3
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
More than Enough

Here’s a video of the bike with no luggage. Don't know why I couldn't get it to embed. Got it!



Here’s what I’m taking with me.

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

Not counting the dry sacks that I’m strapping on with rok straps mainly to accommodate camping equipment, I have about 85 liters of storage.

25L Givi tank lock bag
20L Kriega back pack (I’m leaving this empty since everything else is too stuffed to hold anything I’ll probably pick up along the way like groceries and a bottle of beer).
2x 10L US10 Kriega bags
1x 20L US20 Kriega bag

This is a list of what’s coming with. It’s a lot since I plan to camp, but it’s more than enough. I do have to admit it was a long process to figure out what I should take and I’m still not sure I chose the right tools …

In the Left US10:
Stuff sack pillow
Med kit
Chain cleaner
Sleeping pad
ESEE-6 with para cord
Packjack
Baby wipes
CO2 cartridges and an adapter to fill my tires
Bug spray
Cheap folding knife
Clothespins
Zippo
Cotton balls soaked in Vaseline (tinder)

In the US20:
Electronic junk for charging
Belt
Riding jeans (Deth Killers)
13” Macbook pro
2 skivvy rolls
Sandals

In the Givi 25L:
Spritzer with water for my helmet
Microfiber cloth
Neck gaiter
Tire gauge
Headlamp
Parking quarters in a change purse
Electric tape for holding all my electronic crap in place
Sunscreen, chap stick, and lube for my face shield
Kindle
Clear face shield in a sock
Red Sox cap (de rigueur)
Even more electronic crap for my Drift Ghost-S
Anker 20,000 mAh(!) battery
Waterproof, warm riding gloves

In the Right US10:
Toiletries
Shop towels
Oil
Chain lube
Freezer bags
Zip ties and Velcro cable ties
Long flathead
Camping towel
Work gloves
Chain cleaning brush
10mm and 13mm box wrenches
Needle nose pliars
Allen keys
Finger ratchet and ľ inch driver
Assorted tips
Cheap LED flashlight
Extra microfiber cloths

I also have a tent in a 14L dry compression sack, a sleeping bag in another 14L dry compression sack and a Dainese dry suit along with a small fleece windbreaker that will be the liner for my mesh Dainese Shotgun jacket if things get cool. I’m mainly concerned with the heat though. It’s freaking hot, Gus.

Here’s the bike with no luggage.

Front


Left
Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

Nipped the pin off of this Union Jack lapel pin and taped it on top of the snakeskin logo.


And of course, here's the perspective I like best.


That's it. I'm heading out in the morning!
__________________
Looking for the right road.

ramdu screwed with this post 07-05-2014 at 09:40 PM Reason: Embedding video.
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2014, 09:25 PM   #4
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
Oh, I almost forgot I always carry a puncture kit with CO2 under my seat and some key chain tools in my pocket. Just in case this helps anyone ...
__________________
Looking for the right road.
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2014, 09:35 PM   #5
c1skout
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Sep 2009
Oddometer: 174
Sounds like a good plan!
c1skout is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2014, 09:55 PM   #6
stripple
Runnin' Hard
 
stripple's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Muskrat Flats
Oddometer: 586
For a fella who isn't much for planning, you have your luggage pretty squared away.

Good on ya for making your trip happen.
__________________
ďWho is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed?Ē Hunter S. Thompson
stripple is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 11:07 PM   #7
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
Wow! Fantastic to see people following.

I was sure I was going to be writing into the void.
__________________
Looking for the right road.

ramdu screwed with this post 07-06-2014 at 11:07 PM Reason: Color
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 11:13 PM   #8
fasttortoise
Adventurer
 
Joined: Jul 2013
Oddometer: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ramdu View Post
I was sure I was going to be writing into the void.
You've got a very clear writing style. Have an amazing trip, document it well, and you'll have a legion of followers. Easy right?
fasttortoise is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 11:21 PM   #9
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by stripple View Post
For a fella who isn't much for planning, you have your luggage pretty squared away.
Right. That did take me a long time too and I found it stressful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fasttortoise View Post
You've got a very clear writing style. Have an amazing trip, document it well, and you'll have a legion of followers. Easy right?
Haha. Yeah. Thanks, buddy!
__________________
Looking for the right road.
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 11:25 PM   #10
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
140705: First Taste

First it was an awful day. Then it got worse. And then, suddenly, it got amazing.

The day's route

Starting out from Austin was predictably slower than I had wanted. Reloading the bike from my unpacking the night before was helpful since I was able to shift some weight around, but it was more time consuming than I had thought it would be.

Still, not too bad considering how much junk I’m throwing on there.

Empty/Packed
Packing the bike for real this time.

I was almost on the road by 8:30 but decided to take one last look at the route. When I stopped, I noticed my helmet cam wasn’t recording. Twenty minutes of wasteful faff-ery ensued and ended with me throwing the camera in my tank bag. I’ll troubleshoot later.

It’s too bad it wasn’t working too, because I couldn’t stop to take pics of the really cool low clouds that the sun was shooting through like something out of a painting all through the ride out of Austin--really dramatic stuff. This lasted for a chunk of the morning and kept things reasonably cool, even foggy, but it burned off by about 10:30 - 11:00.

You know, there are times when the World really feels like a small place. Maybe you meet someone in person that you know from the Internet; or you see a new city and all the things that used to be in pictures only for you, they're now real.

Crossing a big chunk of Texas on a Street Triple in July is not one of those times. At that time the World feels huge and like it will take your lifetime just to make it to Dallas because you will not survive the Sun, wind, and butt pain. That’s because Texas is big, hot in the summer, and most of it is pretty flat leaving not much to do on a motorcycle other than suffer.

Incidentally, with fences and productive uses selected, most of that flat space has now become fields. In fact, in my delirium I became quite a connoisseur of the fields of North Texas.

There’s brown ones …
A brown one

… green ones …
A green one

… yellow ones …
A yellow one

… ones with cows…
A cow one

… ones with horses …
A horse one

… ones with goats …
A goat one

… ones with airplanes …
An airplane one

… and ones with … wait, that’s not a field!!
Not a field

I had finally made it to the Ouachitas (pronounced wosh-i-taws)!
Entering Ouachitas

About 10 minutes after this pic, things got incredible. The temperature went down, traffic went away, and the roads got fun.

Curvy

A view of the not-so-tall mountains …
Ouachita Mountains

Next was crossing into Arkansas and trying to keep my speed up (fun job ) since I had chosen a “shortcut” in order to have a go on some good roads at the expense of making better time to the reunion site. Of course this means I pulled up with barely an ounce of daylight remaining--absolutely worth it.

Made it
AR State line

I always forget how pretty this state is. Pictures don't give you the smell too. It's fantastic, by the way.

Sunset and still riding

I’ll be holed up in a camp next to the Caddo River for a few days with my extended family. I’ll post more when something interesting happens!

Here’s some gratuitous airplane and bomb pics in the meantime.

Which is faster?

Looks safe

Big nose

And what plane doesn't need a bomb?

Boom

__________________
Looking for the right road.

ramdu screwed with this post 07-06-2014 at 11:28 PM Reason: Bring the truth.
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2014, 06:44 AM   #11
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
Wet Restart ( July 10, 2014 | Day 5)

The reunion is over. We horsed around down by the river with the kids, ate too much, got a little annoyed with each other, and now that it’s over I think we mostly miss each other. It was a good time that ended very quickly.


Now it’s back to the road and since I’m in Arkansas, it is a very special road.


The day started off beautifully from my aunt’s retirement cabin out in the middle of the sticks. This is the view from her place, my start point.


Sharp Top Mountain

Sharp Top Mountain


What followed was a round about trip through the east side of the Ouachitas that ended just a little beyond the north bank of the Arkansas River on the edge of the Ozarks.


The Route 7/10


I had breakfast at this little joint in Mount Ida. It was only a half breakfast since I had already eaten cold cereal before leaving, but their biscuits and eggs were calling my name, so I had to have an order. Go there if you find yourself in town: it’s a perfect little diner.


Mount Ida Cafe


From Mount Ida I headed west before going north. I wanted to ride highway 7 from Hot Springs to Ola again. It had been almost 10 years since the last time and it was as much nostalgia for me as it was fun. However, it is hard to pick a bad road around here. It’s more a question of picking the best roads for your mood and bike.



By lunch things were starting to cloud up quite a bit.


Plainview Diner


By 10 minutes into my ride from lunch, the rain was in full effect and very unpleasant.



There was lightning, so I probably shouldn’t have been riding, but I couldn’t find a place to stop. It was only 2:00 - 2:30 by the time I was through the thunderstorm, but the sun was so blotted out that it looked like evening. Stayed that way for the rest of the day too.


Gloomy After Rain


The rain and standing water on the roads kind of took the technical fun out of what would have been a fantastic afternoon, but it was still a really good ride through some pretty country. I made it up 309 and to the top of Mount Magazine. There is a great view up there.



I also discovered that not all of my “waterproof” gear is actually waterproof (not surprised face). In the case of my 5-year-old Revit pants that have endured a couple of minor scrapes in their lifetime, this wasn’t upsetting. However, discovering that my fancy new advertised-as-waterproof laptop carrying case was covering my pricey MacBook in moisture was very upsetting.


Don’t put this laptop case in water unless you want the inside wet.


Wet on the Outside


Wet on the Inside


All in all, my gear performed well though. The Kriegas and dry sacks from REI did just what they advertise.


Rain was forecast for the rest of the evening, so I punted on camping and got a room. I have to start camping soon though. It adds to the moto experience and hotels every night will not be affordable on such a long trip.


Rain buddies.

Rain Buddies

__________________
Looking for the right road.

ramdu screwed with this post 07-11-2014 at 06:45 AM Reason: Color
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2014, 10:38 AM   #12
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
Damn technology

Sorry for the lack of posts lately. Internet has been sketchy and then my hard drive crashed last night!

Will catch up once I'm back up and running. Typing on the phone is not optimal.
__________________
Looking for the right road.
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 02:33 AM   #13
Bora
Adventurer
 
Bora's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2006
Oddometer: 27
Nice



How does the Striple fare in doing long distances? I recently rode the older brother (Speed Triple) and thought the posture wouldn't be as comfortable for long rides.

But then again, I'm used to riding laid back classic motorcycles and generally not used to a "sportier" stance.

You however, seem to be enjoying the Stiple :)
Bora is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 06:03 AM   #14
Miltonkid
Adventurer
 
Miltonkid's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2013
Location: New Hampshire
Oddometer: 55
Great trip so far! I hate when gear doesn't hold up. Sorry about your laptop.
__________________
-Keith
Current ride- 2014 HD FLHXS

www.facebook.com/motorcyclingadventures
Miltonkid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 04:01 PM   #15
ramdu OP
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Oddometer: 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bora View Post


How does the Striple fare in doing long distances? I recently rode the older brother (Speed Triple) and thought the posture wouldn't be as comfortable for long rides.

But then again, I'm used to riding laid back classic motorcycles and generally not used to a "sportier" stance.

You however, seem to be enjoying the Stiple :)
I LOVE this bike and am more than willing to endure it on flat stretches in order to have fun later. What I find uncomfortable is actually the lack of wind protection more than riding posture. I'm a chunky 6'1" for reference.
__________________
Looking for the right road.
ramdu is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 08:27 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014