Monthly Archives: November 2013

Two Up, thumbs down

Rebecca and I decide to head down to the Dualsport Plus after party party, held and Les and Catherine’s house on the Hamilton beachfront.  Tonight is the first time Rebecca has actually been on the back of the BMW!

I can’t believe how little we’ve been out on my bikes this year together.  I also can’t believe that we still haven’t picked up any proper riding gear for Rebecca.  She still only has a half shell helmet, and no proper riding boots.  At least she has a nice jacket and riding pants…

We gear up and jump on the bike.  Rebecca is a little hesitant at first as it’s a lot higher seat than by Harley that she’s used to.  The next big challenge for her is that there is no rear backrest like on the Harley – just a little grab bar behind her.  I tell her to hold on tight to me, then correct myself.  “Hold on firmly to me.”  Tight means I can hardly move to control the bike!

We blast down the road and Rebecca is stunned (and a little scared) at how much more power the R1150GSA has over a ’73 Harley FLH.  A few minutes later we drop into Dualsport Plus and then follow Catherine back to her house for the party (which reminds me, looking at Catherine’s flashing brake light module, that I need to install one on my bike before the trip).

Les and Catherine’s house is absolutely stunning inside.  A beautiful, modern condo, with gorgeous views of the lake, and a professionally landscaped backyard that even meets my high standards.

We enjoy an evening of conversation with fellow riders, all of whom are vastly more experienced than me, and then blast on home in the dark with a million more ideas for the bike, gear, and the trip… including figuring out a backrest solution for Rebecca, who has vowed not to ride without one in Belize.  I hope the gear strapped to the rear rack will make her more comfortable…

Categories: Misc | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Iron Butt or Cold Feet?

So I want to do a long distance run on the bike prior to the big trip to Central America just to make sure everything is running okay, and to get some serious seat time just to see how my body feels after a long day in the saddle.

Well, there is this thing called the Iron Butt Association.  In order to become a member, the “initiation” ride is a 1000 mile (1600km) ride, completed in under 24 hours.  That means if you plan (and you should plan for safety reasons) on getting at least 6 hours of sleep, and at least 2 hours for eating, fuel stops, and stretches, you have 16 hours left.  My basic math skills tell me that mean you need to use all 16 of those hours for riding, based on doing 100 km/h average speed.  It’s a slim margin for error, and 16 hours doing the same ANYTHING can be hell on earth.

I’m down for it!

I plan my route out.  From Stoney Creek, out through Toronto to Kingston.  Cross into the USA near Watertown, NY, then back along I-90 to Buffalo.  This would be my chance to chicken out and come home as I’d only be an hour from the house.  If I suck it up and continue on, then I’d go south through Cleveland, around the lake to Detroit, and come back home along the 401 through London, eventually on the 403 to Hamilton.  Basically a lap of Lake Ontario and Lake Erie, in less than a day.

So, I’m ready to go.  I’m psyched up to do it.  But it is November, and the weather is getting cold fast.  I just need some above zero (Celsius) days and I’ll go for it.

Then the first big snow storm hits Ontario.  😦

And that’s the end of the riding season, at least for long distance stuff.  I won’t earn my Iron Butt Association membership this year.  I guess you could say I got cold feet instead.

Categories: Just Do It! | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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