We are making last day preparations and packing for our trip to the Motor Maids Convention in Santa Fe. I have finished my packing and Beth has everything laid out on the guest bed and will pack when she gets home from work.
After Santa Fe, I plan to ride to Alaska, so this trip will be longer than any trip I’ve been on. I expect I’ll be away for seven weeks. I’ve been planning for months. I plan to camp some of the time, so I purchased a new tent and added a few things to my collection of camping equipment. I added a rain fly, new sleeping pad, and a JetBoil hot pot.
I also got new tires, brake pads, and fork oil for the bike. I also put new brake pads and battery on Beth’s bike as well changing the oil.
I assembled everything I need to pack on the living room floor and brought the saddlebags in from the bike. With all the storage in one place I could easily arrange items to fit best.
Here’s a picture of the final arrangement.
The tank bag has my satellite tracker, camera, and Camelback water pouch. All the camping equipment is in the yellow Seal bag. Tools, rain gear, bike cover, snacks, and other miscellaneous items are in the saddlebags. My clothes and computer are in the duffel bag. I weighed everything and the total weight is 130 lbs, which is well within the capability of the bike and less than the weight of a passenger.
Notice that the load maintains a low profile to minimize the reaction to cross winds. I used this same arrangement when I camped in Connecticut and New Jersey in 2011.
Just as in 2007 when I rode to each of the four corners of the continental US, I’m having some butterflies. I’m not anxious about riding to New Mexico and Arizona; I’m concerned and excited about riding to and around Alaska. I’ve read several accounts of others who have made the trip, including one friend who is there now. So I know it can be done; I just need to ride it one day at a time and soak in the experience.
It looks like it is going to pretty hot in the Southwest. We carry plenty of water and have evaporative cooling vests, which work well to combat the heat in dry climates. We’ll stop and rest as needed.
I’ll be using an inReach satellite tracking device, which will update our position every 10 minutes. Be sure to go to the Maps page and watch our progress. Finally, we appreciate your feedback. You can leave a comment. I believe I have set it up to require me to release the comments, so they won’t show up immediately. thanks for checking in.