Northwest Trip Preparations

Steve Kinchen, Sr/ June 24, 2014/ BMW R1200RT, Gear, General Rants & Raves About Riding, Northwest Adventure 2014, Touring/ 0 comments

My RT fully prepped and ready to roll!

Just a few days remain between me, the road out west and another unique adventure that I will be able to claim as my own.  I have methodically implemented my trip preparations and feel confident that I have covered all of the items necessary for the type of trip that lies ahead.

My RT received a new set of Michelin PR 4’s during my 18,000 mile service that also included the usual maintenance required for that service interval.  Oil Change, Brake Fluid, Valve Clearances, and inspection of major systems rounded out the visit to BMW or Baton Rouge’s service department.  With all major service completed, all that was left was a comprehensive detailing of the bike to get her ready for the open road.

Stevie and Nathaniel were of great help in throughly cleaning the bike from the windshield to the rims.  When not another speck of dirt was to be found, we liberally applied a few coats of wax to the painted surfaces of the bike for a layer of protection against what lies ahead on our journey through Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California and beyond.

My view for the next few weeks

Nathaniel commented abut how he looks forward to the day that he too can ride with us on his own bike on an epic odyssey such as the one that I am about to embark upon.  My response to him was simple; that would be a dream of mine come true as well!  Our conversation remained focused on the task at hand with the occasional dialogue drift towards what type of bike he might want to ride and where we would like to ride… oh, and… “you missed a spot!”

I revised my packing protocol after last year to include a few less items that seemed to be unnecessary.  My plan is to pack only clothes that can be hand washed and hung to dry overnight (a traveling trip I learned on my trip to China a few years ago that has served me well!) and rotate those few items more frequently.  I am also adopting a “buy it if I need it” philosophy on a few items that I carried with me last year that never saw the light of day, such as certain OTC meds and additional toiletry items.

Evidence of my somewhat OCD nature, I do believe in proper trip prep!

Evidence of my somewhat OCD nature, I do believe in proper trip prep!

Everything for my trip will fit in this bag and the two side cases on my RT

Everything for my trip will fit in this bag and the two side cases on my RT

Another change for this year is I opted to travel with only a single (as opposed to three last year) GoPro camera that I will vary the placement of depending on the nature of the ride.  I must admit, I have been most pleased with the quality of the video I am getting with the camera mounted right on top of my helmet.  The look is a little goofy, but the video is a great perspective that makes me feel like I am riding the bike again on the great roads that we will visit.

Going with only one camera will allow for remote control with my iPhone as well as lighten the daily “after ride duties” for file management and editing.  The new GoPro cameras with integrated wifi are amazing and I hope to have some fantastic footage to share upon my return.

GoPro mount to engine guard

GoPro mount to engine guard

GoPro mount to rear luggage guard

GoPro mount to rear luggage guard

At this point, the RT is fully fueled, bags are packed, and I am ready for our departure…

Additionally, for anyone wanting to follow our progress in realtime, we will be traveling with a SPOT tracker and you can see where were are by clicking this link:

http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0qkJsBHuPg0jD6se4XqDq6zPQmDdIn1zT

-Steve

Orion RT

P.S. Orion is ready too… maybe in a few years buddy!  And we’ll have to talk about the gear choices!

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