Just Do It!

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.

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BMW Offroad Performance School, Day 2

more coming…

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And thus it begins…

It’s coming up on 10 years since I first saw the documentary “The Long Way Round”, with Charlie Boorman and Ewan McGregor.  Since then the idea of adventure motorcycle travel has been growing inside me.  You see, traveling is my biggest passion in life.  Having been a 10 year vintage Harley rider, the realization that my 1973 Harley FLH would never get me to some of the places I imagined traveling was pretty obvious.  Made even more obvious one year when I blew the motor up doing a lap of Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia.  Since then, every time I’m out riding I keep looking down those dirt roads wondering what I’m missing out on… or worse, take the old Harley down one of them only to discover the big mistake that was to the suspension, the paint, or just about anything else that could rattle loose…

So, I made the decision to buy an adventure dual sport bike.

Seeing an ad on Kijiji, before I knew it, I was out test riding a big GS bike in the cold of November, with the roads sketchy at best.  I’ll be honest, I know nothing about these bikes, and haven’t really done much research on them, but they do seem to be the way to go.  So I bought it!


Now I can hardly wait until the snow melts so that I can go riding on it…. The dilemma of all Northern Riders… what to do to during the winter?

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