How do I go about doing this? I have been riding for apprx 4 yrs to date.So i do not have any experience on this matter. I want to ride from RI to the Grand Canyon and tour a little more of our great country on the ride back. I just want to know what i should pack and prepare for on such an epic journey.I would like to take in more of the "back roads" as opposed to all highway.I am lookin for trip planning sites snd such.I will be getting a gps .What is a goo one for a motorcycle. I know i will need more than just my saddle bags. a trunk or some other luggage will be needed. I figure the trip will take 3 weeks plus. i think i can be ready in about 2 yrs as far as cash to do it. any help will be greatly appreciated. I want to do this before i retire. I am riding an 06 king pin with 8200 mi. Thanks agin.,
I have many miles in the long distance riding world, you are on the right track searching and planning the run.
Some things I have learned over the years:
Build in margin in your budgeting, if you average 50 mpg, plan on 40mpg... Fuel $$$ plan on 25% higher, meals can be cheap, one good meal perday, light lunch and good breakfast can be $50.00 per, budget a little more. lodging is typically anywhere from $100-$200.00 per night national average fro a good hotel. don't undersetimate a good nights sleep. If your camping, this is more stuff to carry.
Need Good rain gear, if you get wet and keep riding you will get cold to the point you can get in trouble.
Remember what your doing, riding, so pack riding gear and plan to do laundry every couple days. you don't need as much stuff as you think. Think about a jacket that is a three season type with removable liners.
Packing sounds stupid, but roll up your stuff, 1, it takes up less room, and 2. it will be less wrinkled.
Luggage, if you are going solo there are a bunch of option that fit in your back seat and can be used as a back rest. you do not need as much as you think you do. and if you do need something there are stores along the way. Suggest you pack for 6 days and plan to do wash every 4-5.
Dehydration on a long ride is not a good thing, a cup holder with an insoulated cup to drink from help ward that off. Hot days and hot sun will drain you quickly.
Simple tools to make emergancy repairs to include tire repair and a way to reinflate.
Lodging, depending on the time of year and the area this can be a challenge. two schools of thought here, plan you trip so that you have a lodging destination each night and make reservation months in advance. This will most time get you a cheaper rate. Join the rewards progam for a hotel chain, out west it is Best Western good places to stay and priced fair.
Or take an adhoc approach stop when you are tired and find a place.availbility might be an issue.
Route planning, First day can be a long day limit your long days to 400-500 miles, next day make the ride shorter, give yourself time to recoup, if Day one was 500 miles day two should be 300 miles. and alternate long and short to keep your engery level and interest up. There is nothing more draining than running long days and getting there worn out. It is about the journey the destination just sets the direction.
Fuel stops if you can go 200 miles to a tank plan on stopping at 150 this way you have plenty of reserve if the station is closed or no longer in business. Do not depend on the GPS to locate a an open fuel station. Got caught out in Montana one year having to wait to the next day for the station to open to fuel because I ran to close to empty.
No new or repairs 30 days before setting out. 90% if your problems will come from recent repairs.
Look over the bike, guide I use is if it is 50% or worse replace it before the ride, this includes tires brakes, filters etc.
Keep in your back pocket the locations of Victory dealerships along your route, if you have a problem that you can't fix onthe roadside at least you have a repair/parts choice.
GPS, my choice is the Zumo 665, get the weather subscription as it will show you NEXRAD information on weather in your area as well as direction of travel of weather. Could be a life saver in Tornado country.
Music or a lovely passenger to talk with, it helps on the long days of long flat roads in the west.
Ride smart, don't be in a hurry to get to the next stop. Weather will be an issue at times if it is bad or you can see it coming don't be afriad to detour around it or stop short and find a place to stay until it blows thru. Summer heat in the west creates some kick A$$ T storms that deliver hail, high winds and heavy rain.
Suncreen is your friend.