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Hey guys! I'm a proud new owner of a Wee Strom and am trying to plan a trip from Philadelphia, PA to Boulder, CO. I've never done a multi-day touring trip before and could definitely use some general advice and some route specific advice, ESPECIALLY since I'll be going alone. On that note, if there is anyone who wants to do the same trip, message me! There is a LOT of information on this site, which I'm planning on going through as best as I can, but I'll never see it all. Links to specific helpful threads would be fantastic.

Some information about my plans:

I have side cases and am planning on strapping a hiking backpack with camping gear on the top luggage mount/rear seat. I'm also considering doing an oem or givi v46 topcase instead, but don't want to wait for it to be shipped.

I'll be stopping in Pittsburg and Chicago to visit friends/family, but would love advice about routes, good places to stop, good camping sites or other cheap options for sleeping. I'm tentatively planning on averaging 6 hours a day every day until I get there.

I have gloves, a Shoei helmet, tourmaster jacket, phone/gps mount, cigarette power outlet and am planning on getting a seat pad, boots, and touring pants. I'm also bringing lube and a small set of tools. I've been able to find threads discussing what the best products are in a given category, so I'm mainly listing these in case there's something I'm missing that you've found indispensable on a trip, such as a tank bag, paper maps or a water bladder.

I'm also a little unsure about how to plan a trip that has a lot of uncertainty. I've never road tripped in a car either. Rain, discomfort or fatigue could change how far I can get in a day. When planning a trip, do you just set a schedule and stick to it no matter what, do you bring plenty of information and alternatives so that you can easily adapt, or do you just ride until you see a hotel or nice patch of grass on the side of the road to camp?

Thanks a bunch everyone!

Jon
 

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?

What's you're riding experience? If you're a newbie do some more travelling with friends first before you consider a long solo trip.
INMHO you must have a good motorcycle gps to ride safely in strange cites.
 

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key is to travel as light as possible. i dont like riding more than 8hrs. a day. that including gas stops, lunch, and b.s. stops. so i'm only actually riding about 6hrs. per day. for a 8hr. average speed of about 45mph. then, at the end of the 8th. hour, i start looking for motel. first one that looks good is ok.
g-luck and ride safe.
 

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Jon,

How you do the schedule is up to you...and God. You may plan to be at a certain place each night, but weather and stuff can throw that off. It's a crap shoot in one sense because if you've planned your stops and have made reservations, you might lose your deposit if you cannot make it there that night. Planning your stops though generally allows you to maybe save a little on hotels because you've booked ahead. Plus, you have a room. OTOH, winging it gives you more flexibility but could cost a bit more. Every rider has their own preference. You can camp too.

Other than that, I break down my gear in two groups: the stuff I need for me; and the stuff I need for the bike. Take half the clothes (undies, socks, shirts) that you think you need and launder them when needed. The rest, you just have to think through. On a trip, I'll bring a plug kit and a mini-compressor. Some kind of rain gear. Tools, zip-ties, chain lube, possibly oil, etc. You don't have to go excessive, just think about what could happen and what you might need. An AMA membership gets you towing if needed. As far as routes, I stay off interstates and other divided, limited access highways as much as possible. It's the secondary highways that are more interesting. Hope this helps some. Keep searching threads here; there are plenty of posts already covering what you are asking.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I've only been riding for two years. This solo trip is somewhat ambitious, but that should make it fun. I'm planning on using my phone as a gps while keeping charged with a cigarette lighter power port.

I'll do my best to travel light and will plan on 8hrs max with stops. I'm going to plan out a route and options of places to stay, but won't make any reservations. Then I can easily adapt to changing situations.

Thanks for the advice about tools. I'll definitely pick up a plug kit and some sort of compressor or air in a can.

I've been doing some reading about routes and though don't have a route nailed down yet, I think I am going to stay off the main highways. I've seen a lot of references to route 66 and may try to take part of that route.

Thanks for the advice everyone! I really appreciate it!!
 

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Rt 30 west from York isn't bad. Takes you through Gettysburg, Latrobe and Ligonier. 31 west from Bedford is another alternative.

Both will take you towards Pittsburgh.

Rt 30 near Somerset runs a few miles north of the Flight 93 memorial which is only a short detour away.

From Pittsburgh, head west through SE Ohio. What part of Pittsburgh are your friends in ?

Several different options to cross Ohio depending on how far north or south of Pitsburgh you're starting from.
 

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Back in the mid 80's, I rode to Maine and back to Colorado. On the return trip, I used US Highway 6 (got on it somewhere south of Boston) almost exclusively the entire way back. There are places where it shares different interstates for a while, but for the most part is its own path. Very relaxing and you will certainly meet a lot of different people. If you stay with US 6 all the way to Fort Lupton, CO and then Colorado 52 west from there, you will end up on Colorado 119 and pointed straight into Boulder.

Terry
 

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If you happen to be crossing northern Illinois on route 6 per the above suggestion, you'll ride right by an outstanding Cajun restaurant called Cajun Connection near Utica. You can check its limited hours on its website.

Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Blog

You guys are awesome! Thanks! I need to figure out how to get email alerts when there's a new post on here.

I'm in Chicago now and am blogging about my travels. I have my gps location live updated and I'll be live streaming some of my rides.

I put this up for my mom, so there are a lot of family/friend pictures and micro status updates. I have at least one bike specific prep blog post planned though. I'll be in Chicago all of today and maybe tomorrow which means I'll either be on the road with live streaming on Sunday or Monday.
 

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If you have done backpacking it helps. Remember you are on a backpacking trip, just doing it on 2 wheels. Stay off the Interstates. Lots more fun to travel the back roads, and give yourself time to stop and enjoy the sights. I like to start early, and stop early. Makes finding a camp spot easier, less stressful etc. also the weather, less wind, cooler, less traffic, less tired drivers in their cages etc.
 
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