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General V-Strom Discussion Talk about all things V-Strom not limited to just one of the above models

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post #1 of 16 Old 08-04-2014, 12:20 PM Thread Starter
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Too Far?

Ive got a bit of time on my hands, and am wanting to ride from Southwestern Ontario to North Dakota, maybe even as far as Glacier National Park. Leaving in the next few days. Just looking for some routing and general advice input . My thought is to cross into the USA at Port Huron, head up through northern MI, and the then head west, linking up with Hwy 2. Want to avoid interstates as much as possible. Maybe also avoid the camping thing as well, just grab motels as I go ( no reservations ). Travel light. Helmet choice is another thing I haven't sorted. I have a full face ( don't like the slightly limited peripheral field of vision ), and a 3/4 open face helmet ( not so good for face down hard contact, but more comfortable ).
A couple of concerns: 1- Possible heavy tourist activity ( ie. few motel vacancies ), 2 - Must be home within a 10 day window.
Maybe too much distance in too few days? I'll be on a 2006 DL1000 ( only has 7000KMS on it ). Ty
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post #2 of 16 Old 08-04-2014, 04:55 PM
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I took 14 days and rode my '02 Vee from Halifax, thru NB crossed at Calais ME...across ME, MH, VT NY back in at Niagara Falls..partied at Port Dover for the 13th Rally....headed NE thru Bruce Penninsula, over Algonquin, down to Gananoque and up across Tremblant in QC over to Quebec City then south home again... 5800+ km.... I had a great time, ran solo, camped where and when I wanted to... paper maps only..No Interstates....

The question is...how hard do you like to ride? How many km's per day is enough for you? If you crossed at Port Huron, you can easy be in Sturgis SD in 3 days even not running the Interstates ( 2000km +/-)

Personally, I love my Nolan N104 Modular helmet...most peripheral I've ever had in a full face, and quietest Modular so far.

Good luck and enjoy the ride regardless of where you end up ... maybe just drive west until you hit day 4 and then decide ? Sometimes the journey outweighs the destination

just my $0.02 - Craig

2002 DL1000 K2
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post #3 of 16 Old 08-04-2014, 06:36 PM Thread Starter
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Smile

Thank you. Im thinking I might be screwed for motel vacancies, if I rely on them exclusively, and bring no basic camping gear. I was wanting to avoid the crowds at Sturgis, hense ND was my alternate. And I cld avoid the Chicargo area by going through N MI. I have an excellent dual sport AFX helmet, but it catches alot of wind, makes for a sore neck. And not as good for side vision as my HJC visor 3/4 helmet. But the bugs in the face can be nasty. The thing is, Im a single dad with a 15 yo daughter, full time, who doesnt want to go 2up with ole dad. "Too boring". Althogh her older brother is around to keep an eye on her. Shes 15 going on 25, if u know what I mean. I took early retirment. My job was to " Serve and Protect". So, I know that stuff can happen. A great kid. Its everyone else that worries me. She says " just go dad ". It wld be an opportunity for her to feel a bit more independant, w/out having her dad being back on K9 duty most of the time. I guess once a cop, always a cop. Im just not getting any younger. Always harder to ride when the bugle sounds:-).
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post #4 of 16 Old 08-04-2014, 06:57 PM
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Hey Zeke,

For me it depends on how much you want to stop and smell the roses. The distance is doable, but if you went all the way to Glacier National Park, you'd basically just be riding and not leaving much time for other stuff, and maybe that's ok too. It just depends on what you want.

My wife and I just did a 1 week, 2200 mile ride in NM, CO and UT a few weeks ago. We had 1 day off, so we ended up riding about 6 days. I tried to route our trip so we had closer to 300 miles/day, and take in as much awesome scenery and places as possible. One day we had about 430 miles though, and it was a beast of a day, with over 100F temps in UT. With 300-350 miles/day, we were still able to get to our destination each day with some time to kick back and relax. We definitely didn't want to just ride from dawn to dusk every day. My wife might have preferred a little less "stringent" schedule, but we had destinations we needed to be at, so I had to keep us moving. Traveling alone makes it easier to do what you want, stop when you want, not need as long for eating/rest stops/etc. as well. But I think the main thing is you need to determine if you want to spend all 10 days in the saddle, or just get out and enjoy your ride, stopping where you want, when you want and for how long you want, seeing what you manage to see along the way.

As far as helmets go, I have an AGV helmet with a beak, and had to abandon that on my Wee2 for a new Shoei Qwest. The AGV is a great helmet and I use it on my WRR (with no wind protection), but the Shoei for touring is gobs better on my wee.

I was a single (full-time) dad for 12 years of 2 boys until I recently remarried. Cudos to you!

Enjoy your journey!
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post #5 of 16 Old 08-04-2014, 09:38 PM
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You might want to consider running up the Michigan side and cross the macinaw bridge, then head west and across the lower side of Superior up and around Duluth MN to International falls, then loop back over the lake head down to Manitoulin, ChiChiMan (?) ferry across to Tobermory .... or just keep going to Sudbury and run the edge of Georgian Bay back around home...it is an amazing drive and the scenery is to die for along the north and south shores of Superior and Georgian Bay/Huron...Just an option that keeps you a little closer to home...done it a dozen times in the cage and a few on the bike amny moons ago when my Dad lived in Atikokan.... where are you is S.Ont? I grew up in Caledonia....retired OPP?

2002 DL1000 K2
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post #6 of 16 Old 08-04-2014, 11:00 PM
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Thumbs up Nice ride.

Zeke01,

I reckon you will have fun. I have ridden the Upper Peninsula, and other parts of Michigan too. Yup, my Florida Wee-Strom has carried me into Michigan six times. Stay away from the Ambassador Bridge; the Blue Water is a cordial place.

Anyway, YES, US-2 is a fine road. Duluth is a pretty town, and if you go
about as far uphill as you can, you will get a fine view of Lake Superior.

You may want to explore the source of the Mississippi River,
which is Lake Itasca in Minnesota. There is not much to see at the
spot where the river flows out of the lake, but you will be able to take
note of the origin of one of the most important rivers in North America.

What matters is the RIDE. Get on your bike, and go somewhere far away.
I did that in 1965 and I liked it. Ya know what, I got busy at this and that,
and did not enjoy another long ride until 2006.

So please pay attention to the most important issue.

I will spell it out for you.

R
I
D
E

Got it?
Keith


Last edited by Keith Falkner; 08-04-2014 at 11:01 PM. Reason: Duluth is PRETTY, not petty. Fooooo
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post #7 of 16 Old 08-05-2014, 09:40 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you lads, for some great ( and indeed useful ) advice. I'm a wee bit concerned about the travel light thing..that is, I'm not planning on hauling any camping gear. Its the motel lack of vacancy potential that I'm thinking about. While I'm used to going very long stretches sans sleep ( sleep deprivation Id guess you could safely say ), it's generally non compatible when rolling on 2 wheels, or even 4;-).
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post #8 of 16 Old 08-05-2014, 01:26 PM
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Bring the full face helmet, it's better in adverse weather, which you will inevitably hit at some point.

When small town motels are full they'll often be able to point you to other options. Hotwire.com, airbnb.com, and couchsurfing.org are all useful for helping get places to stay sorted out, just get a cheap tablet of some sort so you get can on the internet wherever you find wifi (McDonalds is usually a good bet to find it, also Home Depot, Lowes, Starbucks, etc).

I've never seen a motorcycle parked in front of a psychiatrist's office. And that tells me pretty much everything I ever need to know about why I ride.

My Ride: 2012 DL650A Explorer Package, Fox Orange. Mods/Farkles: Scottoiler vSystem, Rox Risers, Adventuretech Mirror Extenders and Sidestand Foot, SW-Motech Over-The-Dash GPS mount.

Plans: Denali-type lighting, orange LED cowling/engine lighting, LED highlight upgrade, and everything I need to ride the Dempster Highway in 2017.

States/Provinces Ridden: NS, NB, QC, ON, ME, NH, MA, VT, NY, PA, DE, MD, DC, VA, WV, NC, TN, KY, GA, OH, IN, IL, IA, NE, CO, UT, AZ, NE, CA, NM, TX, OK, MO.

Just finished a 12,000 km run from Toronto to Monterey and back.
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post #9 of 16 Old 08-07-2014, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zeke01 View Post
Thank you lads, for some great ( and indeed useful ) advice. I'm a wee bit concerned about the travel light thing..that is, I'm not planning on hauling any camping gear. Its the motel lack of vacancy potential that I'm thinking about. While I'm used to going very long stretches sans sleep ( sleep deprivation Id guess you could safely say ), it's generally non compatible when rolling on 2 wheels, or even 4;-).
Just a bit of caution on motels. I believe the fracking (oil/gas) business in ND is very robust at this time. A couple months ago I was traveling from Ohio home to PA and I thought I could find a motel in the WV area. No way. I stopped at no fewer than 6 along the way and they were all full with workers who were involved in this new "gold rush" so to speak. I ended up driving all the way home that night. Not sure what the status is in ND but just relating my experience.
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post #10 of 16 Old 08-07-2014, 11:23 AM
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All depends on how much distance you want to cover per day. I don't like to ride over 500km a day (300 miles) so for me a 10 day trip would be no more then 5000km. I like to leave around 10 in the morning and get checked into a hotel about 7pm.

I think distance wise you would be fine, and you can always find a new route if you are running behind after a few days.

If you are really concerned about motels why not book them ahead of time? Figure out where you need to be everyday and book a hotel there. You can always cancel them.

Might not be a bad idea to bring a tarp and a sleeping bag just in case

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