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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Advice needed for Friday ride ! (May 11)

Hi everyone -

I have a 2012 V-Strom that I love! It's all broken in and ready to go. Some friends are inviting me to join them on a 5.5 hr ride on Friday, in a fabulous area above Aix en Provence in France. The ride looks incredible, but I'm worried about my total riding time for the day, and wanted to see if anyone in the forum here thinks I'm insane, or if it's a doable day:

Their ride is this:
Garage Saint Roch M Tosello à Garage Saint Roch M Tosello - Google Maps

I have to add 2.5 hours before starting, and 1.5 hours when we're done:
120 Cour Nicolas Appert, 34000 Montpellier à Marseille - Google Maps

Any ideas on how dumb it would be to ride for so long? Or is this doable?

Thanks in advance for any input.
 

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What a route. It would take me two days each way to do that plus ferries. And yes, it would be worth it.
I went out for 6 hours yesterday around the much smaller mountains of North Wales. Whe I got home I just wanted to do it all over again.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Such great advice!

Done deal. I'm all over it !!! I'll post some pictures when I'm done.

Thanks for your encouragement. Doesn't the Wee look nice in France!!

 

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Not a problem. I've done 14 hours on my K6 and 7 on my L2.

5.5 hours with just a single stop for fuel and a snack is doable for me.

Pete
 

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OP- Any ideas on how dumb it would be to ride for so long? Or is this doable?


Whether this ride is "doable" or not is really completely up to you and your riding skills and ability and comfort level riding the new Wee.

I am not sure how any other rider can provide an answer for your question. Just an observation...:confused:

None the less, 600 miles is a nice day ride!

Have a great ride if you go!
 

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I find the stock seat a bit hard and the bike a bit buzzy for rides over 3 hours. You may have to take a few more breaks. Who want's to ride that long in one stretch unless you are slabbin' it just to get to the twisties. I'd rather start in the twisties...:mrgreen:

575 miles in one day is my record on the SV.
420 on the XT and 225 is the most so far on the DL.
 

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Hell yeah!

That looks fun.



Based on your gmaps, this looks like a ride somewhere in the 650km range, with about half in the mountains, and the other half getting there and back on the highway. Sounds perfect for our bikes. Especially if you start early and take a nice long break to stretch out and gorge on croissants and cafe au lait before hitting the twisties.

p.s. I have the same bike as you, and will be exercising it on a similar route here in my own backyard of British Columbia this weekend. Cheers!

:hurray:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Agreed, and am going.

I've confirmed with the group, and am going on this ride. It matches what you're all saying about "doable" distances (assuming ability and stamina, for which I will be careful). I've been out on 2.5 - 3 hrs rides these past weekends and just wish I could have stayed out longer. No fatigue to speak of, feeling very comfortable on the bike.

The ride will totally be broken up into segments -- after the highway and before the mountains, then big long lunch, and less of a ride home at the end of the day. It'll be a great, sunny day, perfect for experience. Oh joy!!! Probably going to get a Givi 22L Easylock tank bag if I have time tomorrow. If not, who cares?

Forgot to mention that most of the group is riding Harleys. They'll probably want to stop and stare at their bikes every few miles. Not sure what the difference in riding style will be (though I can guess), but I'm really looking forward to the whole thing. I'll let you know how things go.

Thanks for your $0.14 (two cents from 7 comments).
 

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Sounds like a great ride, except for the Harley's..you won't want to be behind them and you'll probably be wanting to go A LOT faster in the twisties.

An Airhawk seat cushion has been my best friend for longer rides, especially with the stock seat.

Enjoy, I wish I could make that ride!
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
12 hrs on one day, 2.5 on the next.

Just to close out this thread and thank you for your comments, here’s how the trip ended up…

Incredible. Awesome. Beautiful. Smooth curves. Hairpins. No pain. Cliffs, rivers, snow-capped mountains… good company, good riders. Basically all the best that the south of France has to offer. For your reference: http://g.co/maps/pjube

Summary of Friday: Montpellier to Marseille (2 cities not too far from each other, along the sea) via the Valberg ski resort in the Alps (altitude 1500 m/5,000 ft). Departure from my home at 6:40 AM. I hear that if it were legal, my V-Strom may have been up to 165 km/hr (102 mph) at one point on the A8 highway after Aix en Provence, but mostly happily happy cruising at 140-150 km (87-93 mph). Some zones had lower speed limits, and I stopped for several short breaks. After 250 kms, I arrived at the meeting point (filling up the tank after the highway ride - 5.5 l/100, 42.7 mpg for this portion) at 9:27 AM.

At 9:30 the very-much-on-time group headed out into the backcountry. Believe me, this is where you want to go when you’re in the area. We rode mostly non-stop until 1:30, when we took at break for lunch. That’s 6.5 hours or so riding for me at this point. We finished the group ride from 3:30 to 7:30 PM, through some of the most beautiful winding roads I’ve ever seen (280 km ride with the group). Everyone felt the same way. Then my friend and I broke off to head to Marseille, also via back roads, for another 1.5 hours to reach his house. Mileage during the whole post-lunch period ended up being 3.9 l/100, 60.3 mpg).

That’s about 12 hours total riding time for the day. Then this morning I rode 2.5 hours to get home to Montpellier, along the seaside and marshlands.
And you know what? I was not (and still am not) in any pain whatsoever. Tired, but not exhausted or dangerous. No real bike pain – sure, my thumbs and indexes are a bit tight, and my knees a little tired from being bent, but now it’s the next day and I am just “sleepy” tired, not muscularly tired. Stock seat, stock windscreen in high-position. Someone said that a good seat lets you sit in several different places, which I found totally true and useful on this ride. Also that bit about leaning on the tank bag from time to time.

If you do a ride in this area, I’d suggest sleeping somewhere out in the mountains, and going even FARTHER! AND NEVER GOING HOME!! Sorry, the euphoria is still in my veins. If I had to post something in the “new name for the V-Strom” thread, I’d call it the Awe-Strom.

Here are some pictures to make you want to go there:







 

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Sounds like an awesome ride. Glad you were able to comfortably complete such a long day in the saddle. My longest day has been 5 hours and I'm really itching to take a couple thousand mile trip this summer. Your write-up was very inspiring!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The only bogus part was when it was all over.

Sounds like an awesome ride. Glad you were able to comfortably complete such a long day in the saddle. My longest day has been 5 hours and I'm really itching to take a couple thousand mile trip this summer. Your write-up was very inspiring!
My longest ride had also been 5 hours. Now I have no fear (though I would not try to do 12 hours every time I go out!). I would do it all again in a second. The moments are magical, and often in places where you least expect them.
 
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