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Discussion Starter #1
Well, the final countdown has begun....22hrs until I embark on my first long distance haul for 2 weeks from Ontario to BC and back.
According to mapsource: 7,708 km. Meeting up with a friend in Regina (who's riding up from San Fran).

I think I'm pretty well packed and ready. Went for a small test ride tonight, but will do something more thorough tomorrow.
Ride report and pics when I get back.
Wish me luck!

Chris
 

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Have a super trip, tophski!

How many klicks on your bike before you hit the road? Be interesting to read mileage figures and compare them to the "age" of your bike -- a 650 n'est ce que pas?
 

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Have a great time. Riding day after day can be a really amazing thing, specially once you get West of Calgary. :-D
 

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Good luck and safe riding - may pass you maybe on way back - I'm heading out there 27th of Aug for 3 weeks. Honk if you see a lt blue/silver wee with tall windscreen e/w GIVIs and Famsa set with tank panniers.

Bob
 

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Have Fun

Is that the stock seat on your bike?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
thanks guys

Driftr: I have about 3k on her now.

Heavy: I'm looking forward to BC the most...it's been 7 years since I've lived out there and I miss it.

rhbell: I plan on being back by the 26th, so we'll prob miss eachother, but have a good trip!!

S'N: yes stock seat. it hasn't been bad after 3hrs on it, but I'm anticipating a sore backside after 10hrs...

getting butterflies! 10hrs to go...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I do have a couple last minute questions:

CAA roadside assistance: is this worth getting? Has anyone had to use it? Not sure if I should spend the $$ or not...

Walmart camping: I've read that Walmart doesn't mind campers in their parking lots...is this acceptable in Canada as well? or are they more stingy about that sort of thing?

Oil Change: gonna need one mid trip...can I just hit a crappy tire? Will they take my used oil, and maybe let me borrow something to catch it in?

any Calgarians recommend a good shop just incase?

TIA
 

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Caa

As I'm leaving for BC on 27th I checked this out as I have CAA Plus coverage (Apparently the PLUS coverage is important).

Motorcycles, so I'm told by CAA are not covered under regular coverage but if you have CAA "PLUS" coverage they are. It is written that way in the PLUS sedction of the membership brochure I have as well. Never used it for the bike but have had to use it on the old SUV once. Can't find the going rates as my other half takes care of that but think it's in $80-120 range for both of us (don't quote me though).

Regardless of what choices you make for coverage - PM me and I'll shoot you over an excel file of all the Suz dealers from Ont - BC and in between - it hopefully wont have to come in handy but does have locations and phone numbers, just in case.

Re: oil change - although this is dated -last time I took a long trip on my old GS1100 I took a spare filter with me and approached a local independent garage out in the boonies in Sask (place name escapes me but just off the Transcan). Bought the oil from him (was Castrol GTX if I remember and changed it with his filter wrench and drain pan. Think I even gave him $5 for a tip for letting me use his yard. Worked ok and didn't have to hunt around for a filter while on the road.

Safe ride

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Interesting about the caa info, thanks. I'm leaving in about 6hrs now, so I probably won't have the time to go check out everything about it. Hopefully luck will be on my side and I wont regret not getting it. ;)

I am bringing a filter with me and a filter wrench, so I just need a place to dispose of the used oil and maybe something to catch it in.

I have a cvs file for my gps with all the ontario zuk shops, but none others. I would totally appreciate it if you could email me that excel doc to chris (at) kniffen.ca, that would help out alot!

Thanks a ton!
 

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Thats kinda funny i leaving for BC on saturday.

Unfortunatly i have to take the cage:(

I envy you, I wanted to take my bike so bad but the bike would end up costing too mutch to ride out and would also take more time than i have. 1000km day is easy in a car not so easy on the strom. and funny enuf my car gets about the same milage as the bike.
 

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Geez...is everyone going to BC this year? I'm leaving for Kelowna on Sept 1.

Patt

To rhbell; could you shoot me a copy of the Suzi dealers? Might not me a bad idea to have along.
 

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OIl Change @ CTC Richmond BC

Tophski,

I hope you are enjoying your ride. I did Toronto - Denver - Vancouver - Edmonton - Toronto in 2006, and had a wonderful time. I averaged over 500 miles per day westward (some days were 25 hours long) and 600 miles per day eastward (some days were 23 hours long).

I changed my oil (but not the filter) at Canadian Tire in Richmond BC. They were as cordial as Newfoundlanders, and took my used oil with no problem.

The Yellowhead highway is delightful; I rode it eastward.

The Sea-to-Sky is a must, but you already know that!

Keith
 

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Look me up in Calgary.

Shops to try:
Calgary: Blackfoot motorsports - big huge operation lots of accessories and goodies if you need them
Cochrane: Mountain Toys - small family outfit just tuned my bike.

shops in Calgary have a 2-4 week wait list for work orders so beg and plead and let them know you are on the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Got back Thursday night and spent the weekend with the family, and letting my ass recover.
I'm putting together a ride report and going through my photos, so I'll have something soon.

The skinny of it is:

8533.4km total (5302.4miles).
averaged 18.7km/L (44.7mpgUS/52.8mpgImp)...had some pretty windy days.
did an oil/filter change (switched to synth mobile1).
dropped it twice (both at stand stills), but no damage. No problems whatsoever with the bike, it ran beautifully,
and surprisingly enough with the way I flew, no tickets!
Northern Ontario was beautiful (but they could use a 4 lane highway with a faster speed limit...) and western
Alberta/BC was breath taking of course. Nothing like that mountain air to get you going.
No comment on the prairies... :rolleyes:

I'll get you guys a few pics and some more details very soon.
Chris
 

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Glad you had a great trip!!! Looking forward to the pics :D
 

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I do have a couple last minute questions:

CAA roadside assistance: is this worth getting? Has anyone had to use it? Not sure if I should spend the $$ or not...

Walmart camping: I've read that Walmart doesn't mind campers in their parking lots...is this acceptable in Canada as well? or are they more stingy about that sort of thing?

Oil Change: gonna need one mid trip...can I just hit a crappy tire? Will they take my used oil, and maybe let me borrow something to catch it in?

any Calgarians recommend a good shop just incase?

TIA
If you put in synthetic before you leave you should be able to do the entire trip.
I've been using Motul full synthetic. It's red out of the bottle and after 6k it still looks new. It's not cheap though. About $14 a litre
 

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Discussion Starter #19
hey Dave, yeah, trip is done, but I did put in synthetic when I hit Winnipeg and it ran great for the rest of the trip.

Drifter: no interference thank God...although I did ride for about 2 hours in the pitch black into Sault Ste marie coming from Dryden and was a little freaked out...rode through some fresh LARGE roadkill too. Other than seeing a couple of deer, having a few skunks trying to dig their way into my tent and warm themselves by our fire, and the cows along the side of the back roads, there was no real drama.

I found it funny how squared off my back tire is now. I went from just over 3000km on the odo to over 11000. The sad thing is how fast it all went by...it still feels like I'm waiting to leave. Need to find me that winning lotto ticket.

I still haven't finished getting the pics together, waiting for my buddy to send me a few choice ones he has on his camera tomorrow and I'll put it all up. Here's the banner I made for my website with a few shots though:



more tomorrow, promise.
Chris
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Sorry for the long delay...
Finally put up a gallery on my website with pics from the trip.
There are captions on the pics but I haven't finished writing the actual report yet.

The short and sweet of it is, it was a great first trip. I'd do it again in a heart beat.
Saskatchewan was uneventful, and getting out of Ontario took forever (lucky it was scenic!).
I didn't do half as much touristy stuff as I hoped to, but I'll know for next time.
My bike was rock solid mechanically. Really performed perfectly.
I'm so glad I picked up a Zumo too...having music sure helped pass the time, and it helped out my directional dyslexia as well.
Powderface trail in Alberta was kicking, and I wish we could have continued up to the 40 to Jasper....next time.
Also the Crowsnest pass, and 93 were alot of fun as well.
What did I figure out from it? Didn't need to pack a few things that I did, and should
have packed some stuff I didn't (warm clothes...). Need to pick up some hard luggage
for next time (although my sb900s did very well).
And take more time to smell the roses.

Enjoy.

Chris
 
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