Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #15 (Travel in the Light)(Last Point)


For many touring riders, motorcycle touring is something they do on vacation. It is a time to relax. No emails or faxes pouring in, office insanity, or alarm clocks. While motorcycle touring is a great way to get away from work, the alarm clock is worth keeping around. While some prefer traveling long distances in… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #15 (Travel in the Light)(Last Point)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #14 (Stop Frequently, and for Fun)


As was discussed to a lesser extent in Point #12 (Trip Planning), touring is often not just about the destination. Sometimes time restrictions, limited PTO, and the like force a rider to focus only on the destination. When I was doing my first cross-country ride (Buffalo, N.Y. to Salt Lake City, Utah) I had very limited… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #14 (Stop Frequently, and for Fun)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #13 (Go with a Group)


One of the smartest things a new touring rider can do is go on their first tour with one or more experienced touring riders. This is not a topic I have a lot of experience with. I have only done one non-solo tour, and I was the more experienced rider in the pairing. However, if… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #13 (Go with a Group)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #12 (Start Short)


Chances are a majority of people who read this article are researching long-distance riding in anticipation of a long-desired, cross-country trip. Some may have a week-long, coast-to-coast tour in mind. Others may dream of riding up and down one of the coasts or venturing to scenic places or motorcycle rallies afar. Whatever the case may… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #12 (Start Short)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #11 (Trip Planning)


Introduction For a new touring rider, planning is an essential component of a successful first tour. Some riders may enjoy intentionally getting lost on back roads while exploring their home countryside. Long distance riding, however, can easily lose its fun factor without proper planning. Many new touring riders wrongly write off long distance riding after… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #11 (Trip Planning)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #10: Dressing for the Occasion (aka Riding Gear)


Riding gear is one of the hotly-debated topics within the motorcycling community. Many riders suit up and look like storm troopers, while other will go riding in a t-shirt and gym shorts. While the debate rages on, riding gear can be even more important to a touring rider than a casual rider for several reasons.  The first… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #10: Dressing for the Occasion (aka Riding Gear)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #9 (Preventative Care aka Motorcycle Maintenance)


#9: Preventative care: Previous articles have discussed the importance of having the ability to call for help in any situation and having the right tools packed to make roadside repairs. However, both situations can often be avoided by keeping your motorcycle properly maintained. This is especially true for long-distance riding, where riders are usually far from their home garage. It… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #9 (Preventative Care aka Motorcycle Maintenance)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #8 (Motorcycle Shoe [Tire] Shopping)


#8: Motorcycle shoe shopping (aka tires):  Just like carrying the right tools can be a tour saver, so can having the right tires on your motorcycle. Certain types of motorcycle tires last longer and therefore perform better for long-distance riding than others. Having to lose a day or two during a long-distance trip to having new tires installed can ruin… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long-Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #8 (Motorcycle Shoe [Tire] Shopping)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #7 (Bring the Right Tools for the Job)


#7: Bring the right tool(s) for the job: In the words of fellow long-distance riding enthusiast Paul Pelland (http://www.longhaulpaul.com/), "If your idea of a bike tool kit is a cell phone and a credit card, you're in trouble already." While carrying cash and alternative means of calling for help was covered in the last article (Point #6), the need… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #7 (Bring the Right Tools for the Job)

Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #6 (Packing Tips)


#6: Packing tips and tricks: How low can you go?: When packing for a motorcycle tour, it is always best to keep weight as low and close to the center of the motorcycle as possible. In other words, try packing the heaviest items toward the bottom and front of the saddlebags. This allows for optimal… Continue reading Going the (First) Distance: An Introduction to Long Distance Motorcycle Riding, Point #6 (Packing Tips)