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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well, I am headed out on another trip. I leave May 13th and will get back sometime around the 25th or after. This time I’m headed to the Grand Canyon, Death Valley, and I’ll tour some of Arizona, Utah, and southern Colorado on my way home. I’ll be riding solo this whole trip unless I meet someone along the way going the same direction. I have to be in Phoenix for a conference so I’m riding the Strom out there. I had originally planned to leave on a Thursday and take my time getting out there too but as it turns out I have to be at our state convention on Saturday in Hot Springs, AR because I am running for a delegate position to the national convention. So that puts me kind of rushing out to the Grand Canyon to meet my wife (who is flying out and renting a car with some of our employees). After a day at the Grand Canyon we’ll attend the work conference in Phoenix for 3 days and then I’ll head to Death Valley, CA and take the scenic way home afterwards. My wife will fly home. On this trip I’ll stay in some hotels and camp a fair amount too. This should be about a 4,000 mile trip.

A little about me the rider because I think that helps for reference. I’m a 38 year old married man with no kids. I’m in decent shape and I have camped off the bike a lot. I’ve been on a few longer distance road trips on the bike. I did the Alaska ride a couple years ago and had a great time. Since then I haven’t been riding the strom that much… I bought a WR250R for riding dual sport and a KDX 200 bike for riding single track in the woods here in AR. I’ve been riding those bikes for the most part lately. On the AK trip we did somewhere between 1,500 and 2,000 miles of dirt road and I didn’t have that much experience at the time but now I am a fairly decent off road rider although I doubt I’ll hit much dirt on this trip. My longest day on the bike ever was 17 hours when my friend David and I rode from Coldfoot, AK to Dead Horse, AK and back again to Coldfoot. (for those that have made the trip and are thinking we went slowly… it was because of the nasty weather and road conditions we hit) The 24 hour daylight made that long of a ride much easier. I’ve had several days of 12+ hour riding but I’m not one of the iron butt guys that enjoy that kind of thing. I just do what I have to do sometimes to get where I want to be when there is a time crunch.


I did a write up for the AK trip http://www.stromtrooper.com/ride-reports-route-sheets/209777-ar-ak-2014-a.html#post2481777 and also started a AK tips thread as well as posted a packing list for that trip. Reading other ride reports really helped inspire me the make the AK trip and I picked up a ton of good information. So I wanted to do the same for other riders when I got back. Since that ride report was well received I figured I’d do another write up for this trip.
Here is my packing list. This is a complete list for this trip. This list also counts the clothing I am wearing. For the clothing non motorcycle trip related like the clothing I am wearing to the conference I am not going to detail.

Packing list
Tool Kit (this tool kit is about the size of a football, I like to pack the tools I might need.. overkill… whatever… you might see some tools you never use and that’s likely because of some accessory I have on my bike)
1. Tire repair kit
2. Air pump
3. Air pressure gauge
4. End snips
5. Chain Lube
6. Extra fuses
7. Zip ties
8. Duct tape
9. Super glue
10. Quick set JB weld
11. Multi tool
12. Knife
13. 2 crescent wrench (5” & 8”)
14. Oil filter wrench
15. Large Allen wrench tool for font axle
16. 3/8” socket wrench, 8” extension, spark plug socket, 17mm, 12mm, 8mm, 9/16, 15/16, 6 mm Allen wrench sockets
17. Electrical tape
18. 10 and 12mm wrenches
19. Allen wrench and Star tool sets
20. Multi bit screw driver
21. Precision flat head screwdriver
22. Slip ring pliers
23. Paper disposable funnels
24. Extra headlight bulb and turn signal bulb.
25. Extra straps and bungee cords
26. Owner’s manual
27. Quart of oil

Camping gear (a lot of this is backpacking gear)
1. Sleeping bag
2. Ground pad
3. Light tarp
4. Tent
5. Cook set: cooking/eating utensils, cup, stove, fuel cans, dish soap, and hand soap, a few brillo pads
6. Headlamp, flashlight, and extra batteries
7. Lighter
8. Bug spray
9. 50’ light rope/cord
10. Collapsible lunchbox/beer cooler
11. Small trash bags
12. Extension cord


Clothing
1. Sunglasses
2. Rain Gear
3. Riding jacket, pants, gloves, helmet
4. Heated gear
5. Sandals, hiking boots (I wear hiking boots riding on these types of trips)
6. 3 pair underwear, 3 pair socks, 1 pair warm socks
7. 2 pair pants that convert to shorts
8. 2 t shirts, 2 long sleeve shirts (no cotton)
9. Sock cap
10. Baseball cap
11. Nice clothing for the state convention and work conference.
12. Laundry detergent and quarters


Toiletries
1. Toothbrush and paste
2. Shampoo
3. Soap
4. Towel
5. Razor and shaving cream
6. Deodorant
7. Toilet paper

Food
1. Oatmeal
2. 2 dehydrated food meals.
3. Hot chocolate mix

Misc. Gear
1. First Aid kit and eye drops
2. Camel back
3. Camera, charger, gorilla pod, extra battery, and extra memory cards.
4. Go pro and extra batteries
5. Maps, and trip notes
6. Cell phone and charger
7. Headset that allows me to make and receive calls from the bike.
8. Ear plugs
9. Sunblock
10. Pills/medication
11. Spare keys for bike
12. Extra zip lock bags
13. Sewing/repair kit
14. Lap top (needed for conference)
15. Handgun (I have a CCW permit and carry everyday but I won’t take this to California because of their crazy laws)
16. national parks pass


Aside from some small changes to my packing list from the AK trip the one thing I am going to add is the ability to charge electrical devices on the bike while riding. I missed out on some pictures a couple days on the AK trip because my camera had no charge and on this trip I’ll have cell signal nearly every day so I’ll want to charge that too.

My bike is fairly decked out for trips. I have a comfortable Sargent heated seat, heated grips, 2 hookups for heated gear and I have a full suit, hwy pegs, bar risers, and several other things..

One thing I am debating on is changing the front tire. The back tire is good but my front likely won’t make the whole trip. As of right now I am just planning on stopping someplace along the way and getting a new one put on but I might go ahead and change it beforehand I fit looks like I’ll hit rain.
 

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I would leave the oil filter wrench and qt of oil at home. Change the filter before you leave and it's good for 10,000 miles. You can always grab a qt of oil to top off if needed. Slip ring pliers? Every laundromat I've ever been to has a machine the sells soap. I carry Dr. Bronners soap. It's non fatted which means it's doesn't have any fats added to it but rinses off real easily. Great for camp grounds where you are paying for showers by the minute and for doing laundry in your hotel room sink.
 

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agree with Dravnx. A bit late in the season to visit Death Valley at least from a comfort standpoint. generally reaches 100 in April and I guess you are planning May. Beautiful place to ride/hike explore though. I saw 90's in early March.
 

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You might consider an Antigravity lithium battery for charging devices and powerful long lasting flashlight and emergency bike start.

We never go without ours.,,,,sooooo useful.
 

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I'd change the tire ahead of time. You get to choose what tire you want. Trying to do it along the way you get what is available. That is if something is available where and when you need it. And covering that many miles, there will be no way to know when you might hit rain. Yes you could miss out on a couple thousand miles of tire wear that you might get on the current tire...but is it really worth the risk (gotta balance frugality vs. safety and convenience.
 

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I am leaving tomorrow and doing much of the same areas "Monument valley, 4 corners, pikes peak, death valley, grand canyon, etc)

Maybe I will see you
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I keep the oil filter wrench on the bike all the time. it is so small... Slip ring pillars too. For laundry detergent I bring 2 off those pod things... the little packets that are already wrapped in plastic and the plastic dissolves in water. I packed 2 in a zip lock bag on the trip to AK and they made it fine without busting. I only used one on that trip because we combined laundry and another person on the trip used their flake laundry soap.

I always have plenty of room on my bike and extra space in the panniers. I pack the camping stuff like tent, ground pad and sleeping bag in 2 bags that sit behind me and make a nice backrest. this also makes it quick and easy to set up camp.

The V strom is already a heavy bike taking an extra 2-6 pounds off when I have the space does not interest me and would make almost no performance difference. I can appreciate the difference of opinion though. I know a lot of guys pack as light as possible with a real minimalist attitude. Then there are others that pack light with the fat credit card attitude too. I have never owned a credit card. I think I am more in the middle so far as packing goes. I do carry more tools than I need and some I'll likely never need on a road trip but I am ok with that.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
agree with Dravnx. A bit late in the season to visit Death Valley at least from a comfort standpoint. generally reaches 100 in April and I guess you are planning May. Beautiful place to ride/hike explore though. I saw 90's in early March.
I read online for that time of year high temps are in the 90-100's possible and lows in the 70's. I looked at the map of nearby places and parks and I've visited the others nearby and some of them several times on other non motorcycle trips. I've never been to Death Valley. If it is too hot I won't stay long. I ride on hot days in AR though... I'll probably just pack some ice the the Camel back and suffer through for the scenery. What's a long distance trip without a little bit of misery??
 

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I read online for that time of year high temps are in the 90-100's possible and lows in the 70's. I looked at the map of nearby places and parks and I've visited the others nearby and some of them several times on other non motorcycle trips. I've never been to Death Valley. If it is too hot I won't stay long. I ride on hot days in AR though... I'll probably just pack some ice the the Camel back and suffer through for the scenery. What's a long distance trip without a little bit of misery??
Wildrose Canyon (Emmigrant) is an interesting ride and a little higher/cooler. Darwin is worth seeing if you go by that way and Ryolite too. Cool off in the museum/visitor center in Furnace Creek. I stop in Tecopa for a soak at the county hot springs.
 
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