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Any Tip/Guide for riding long distance?

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Sweeris, May 23, 2007.

  1. I am kinda planning to do a long trip on my bikewether in early july or early dec, I'm not too sure at this stage. I was wanting to ride up to sydney but im not sure of what to watch out for and things i need to prepare for. I dont driver a car that much and I only have my bike here. I havnt even driven a car for more than 45 min each time. Everytime I go out riding i'd b riding at least 45min up to 1.5hrs (one of them was the trip back on Anzac day). I have just under 7 weeks of riding under my belt and less than 10hrs driving(not even in aus). I've been riding almost everyday. I might b asking if its a good idea or not. I might even meet some netrider up in syd too if I spend enough time there as i hav a few friends I want to visit.

    Any tips? guide?
  2. Just make sure you're prepared. Enough warm/cool clothes, tools (basic set of tools that will fit your bike's parts), spare visor, $$$$, torch (even a little one will do), make sure someone knows your route and you call in to let them know you're OK and most importantly...stay hydrated! Stop when you need to, not when you have necessarily planned to. If you wear contacts, take a spare pair of contacts or a pair of glasses. I also reckon for long trips you need ear protection (ear plugs or good quality speakers if you listen to music.
  3. Watch out for animals. After my 'Hey, riding to Queensland would be a great idea!' episode, I learnt too stay the hell away from them.
  4. Yea i think ear protection or good quality earphones is probably a must for me on a long trip since I have a gutted muffler on my bike and at times it has driven me a bit crazy. Coz when I wanted some quiet all I can hear is my exhaust(and that is normally all I can hear when I go out on a ride)....
  5. i would suggest alot more time in the saddle, slowly increase your ride day lenghts and km per day... if the longest ride you have done is 1.5 hours in either a bike or a car i really think you are putting yourself, and others at risk.... fatigue is real but ot a certain degree, you can reduce it... ie if you are use to riding for longer (you regularly do 200-500km ride days etc) your body and mind will be more a custom to it. Generally the killer on road trips isn't the first day the it's the second and thrid day, when you are drained IMO.

    +1 to what others have said is also required.

    cheers stewy
  6. Hearing protection (Though I wear that always)

    A Camelbak or similar mountainbiker/cyclist/etc water backpack is great to have too, especially on hotter days where dehydration can cause fatigue and make you more susceptible to vibration-related problems (as I discovered firsthand)
  7. Yep, don't have loads of experience here but I have done a couple of big days and what spots said is so true. My water holding backpack was about 60 bucks and the best money I ever spent.

    Fill her up with a couple of liters of water and a few bits of fruit and maybe a chocolate bar, a mobile and some cold hard cash and I am ready for any rd.

    Good luck on your trip
  8. Get riding, and ride for as long as you have petrol in the tank, taking a few stops along the way if you feel you need to stretch out a bit... and then ride home or ride even further if you feel up to it (and think you could still make it back, or at least somewhere to fall asleep [I figured "crash" wasn't the best term to put here :LOL:]) :cool:

    Get used to have some form of weight on the back of your bike as well, you'll need to be able to control the bike with that additional weight through the city as well as twisties. Figure out the sort of things you'll need and go for an overnighter somewhere.
  9. Exactly!
    get the kms under your belt. It's just like training for a big game. you need to get the body and mind used to long ride situation
    The other thing is travel a light a possible, only take what's nessessary
  10. I travel so I can be self sufficient which means i carry:

    Sleeping Bag
    Cooking Gear
    Repair Kit
    Spare gear
    etc etc...

    Now I'm planning a trip with the GF so I need to fit all that, plus my GF's gear... Mind you, I always get amazed looks when people see me pack my bags, they're never quite sure if it really did all fit in. I just tell em all those years playing tetris weren't a waste :LOL:
  11. Melbourne to Sydney can easily be done in a day if you must. Or if you want to do it the scenic way over a couple of days. This crap about time in the seat and ride more and more, don't believe it, just plan frequent stops, eat and drink sufficiently, and you will be fine. this is not an iron butt ride that you have to "Train" for.

    First and foremost, get a puncture repair kit, the sticky hairy string type, that will be your biggest concern on the road, and is one of the easiest ways to get stuck if you get a flat without one.
    Make sure you have the right clothing and gear, if you are freezing or boiling it will be difficult to remain focused and you will not feel like pressing on.

    Plan well and enjoy!
  12. mate, unless i got it wrong the longest ride he has done is 1.5 hours in any one hit..... his total time spent driving a car is 10 hours.... so no i don't think it's crap to suggest to him to get some more km's under the belt before attempting a trip that might be equal to his total amount of time he has spent on the road
  13. a 1000 km trip could be 5 x 200km trips!

    Plan em out, break the ride, and enjoy.

    But don't take freeways - you will learn nothing, and just get a sore ass, and bored.
    When you are bored and tired, you will crash.

    Especially if riding a small bike, vibration after a long time in the saddle can make your hands almost numb, and when you need to use the brakes, you won't react at all.
  14. Oh!

    Chain-lube, too, as the chain should be lubricated every 500-1000km unless you've got a belt or shaft drive, natch. :)
  15. Sweeris,

    Like others have suggested, building up the duration of your rides over a period of time can really help. It's also a good excuse to go for a ride each and every weekend/day that suits. Get used to carrying a backpack and riding as well (I personally hated it!).

    Ride well within your limits - long distance touring is a different style of riding, so to speak - if you ride at 9/10's all the way, there's a better chance of stacking since you a riding longer, therefore exposed to more risk.

    Before the trip, get plenty of sleep and eat well both before and during the ride. Make sure you eat breakfast. Ride when you are used to being awake (ie don't start a 500km trip at 8 in the evening when you'd usually head to bed at 10!) Sleep/rest when you start to feel the need, not after yawning every 30 seconds and opening your visor for cool air!

    Stop and rest when you need to as well. Also, dress for the conditions - if its cold, wear thermals and layered clothing under your gear - if you get hot, take some clothes off. if you get cold, add some. If its hot, dress cool. Whether its hot OR cold, hydrate regularly.

    Get Honda Rider Assist or similar (I have the BMW Roadside Assistance) - for about $100/year, that's a lot of piece of mind for little outlay. If you also go for tyre repair kits and tools, practice how to fix stuff before you leave!

    If you get into more serious touring, get comfortable with all the gear you use. Build up equipment (tents/stoves etc) over time - it takes practice to find out which stuff suits you best - even things like Methylated spirit stoves (Trangias, etc) tend to work pretty poorly in the snow. Some people hate MSR stoves with a passion.

    After al this - remember, riding (and driving) these sorts of trips is great fun. You learn a lot, it takes balls to do it, and can be really rewarding!



    PS Heated hand grips are bloody brilliant for long winter trips! There are also lots of web-based resources that can really help to!
  16. Hey Sweeris - It depends on how far you intend to travel each day...and how often you'll be stopping for breaks. If you're gonna stop say every 70kms for a rest and refresh, then I don't see a problem. If your intending on getting in a fair few kms every day then it might pay to get in some longer trips (3hrs+) before you leave, if only just to test how your body and brain react to spending a lengthier amt of time on the bike.

    Agree with all on rehydrating. Eat well. I've got some further tips on what to pack here: (taken from my post in Kezza's Roads, Touring and Riding Diaries thread) - I pretty much packed this for my 2 wk trip to Brissy. (had only had my learners for 10wks - if I can do it, anyone can! :) )..If I were heading up to Sydney for one wk or 3 wks, I'd pack the same.

    whilst reading this remember : Laundromat's are your friend :grin:

    Edited to add - One other MAJOR important thing I forgot to mention .... YOU'LL HAVE A BLAST!! Are you going up by yourself? Ipod and a couple of alcoholic drinks are great for the end of each day - set your tent up, lie back on the grass, put on your fav tunes and chill... :cool:
  17. Not to sound patronising but everyone has given decent replies here.

    But the core thing is the persons lack of experience, only they know how far they can comfortably ride each day or leg.

    Get on your bike and go, it will all work out on the trip to keep it simple. Obvious correct gear and hydration but basically, go do it.

    Its a great country, why is it so few actually go see it they just talk about it.

    .... have fun.
  18. Exactly! Be aware of your limitations (ie how quickly you get tired, how far you can go on a tank, etc) but don't be afraid of them.

    dam right...which is why I'm riding the bike to Parkes this morning to get to Coffs Harbour for a conference this weekend! (Shame about the weather...typical really!)


  19. You'll learn heaps on the trip anyway - I certainly did...a long trip is an excellent way to get to know your bike and yourself as a rider. As long as you're not pushing yourself too much each day youll be fine. :)

    Have a great ride up there Neil! Go have some fun on the rd to Ebor whilst you're up there. :grin:
  20. That just about sums it up.

    Get out there.....