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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife an I are considering our first road trip this year over 4th of July.

We're in Chicago and we ride around here and WI. On the weekends, we find ourselves riding all day..easily 6 hours or so, just puttering around country roads, aimlessly.

But I figure, in a "road trip" situation, where I actually have a destination I'd like to get to and back, things are a bit different.

I'm trying to get a feel for how long I could ride in a day, it being my first road trip. Whether it'd be hours and/or miles. It'd help in my calculations.

How do you calculate your road trips?
 

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The type and condition of the roads your riding is the biggest consideration, as this is what has the greatest influence on average speed and therefore the distance your able to cover in the time you're allowing.

On a recent long (8 day) trip I just did, I varied between 250 miles and 400 miles per day dependent on the road type, average speeds and terrain.

If your road trip is A->B->A then start off conservatively then go further the next time I'd say.

A lot depends on how your body(s) react to being in the saddle for a long duration too, so thats a further consideration to take into account, as are how much sight-seeing you're doing and/or meal/coffee breaks your taking!



V.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the input!!

I guess I should calculate at a minimum 250 miles a day.
If our bodies are saying we can take more, we'll ride more.

We stay off the highway and enjoy the cruise at 65mph on backroads.
Pretty much flatlands here in the midwest.
 

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Don't know where you've been going but since you're in Chicago you should check out Galena. About a 2.5-3 hour ride from the city. Lots of good roads to ride...twists and hills....plus lots of little shops and stuff to check out...Bed and breakfasts and other places to stay. We get a ton of bikes through here every weekend...unfortunately not alot of Triumphs.

Here's all the tourist crap:
Galena, Illinois
 

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I go by miles, usually. I'm heading out East about the same time you're heading out. Since I need to be someplace I take the superslab and do some 400+ mile days. My vacation starts for the trip back so l'll do the backroads home, as far as practical.

Galena BTW is on my short to do list.
 

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There are people who like touring and people who don't. If you're the latter, even a 250 mile touring day will not be fun - unlike aimless weekend rides where you can pick only the roads you like, reaching a destination requires making compromises, which sometimes means boring or unpleasant riding.

But if you like touring and your body's reasonably suited for the bike, then I'd say 400 miles is a reasonable number. You can take your time, stop when you want, get lost, check out the unexpected backroad, and still be at your destination in time for (possibly a late) supper. If 400 miles is too much, you know you're not cut out for touring.

The bikes themselves are good for much more - I covered 700 miles in 12 hours on my (stock) bike last summer, and a friend of mine did an Iron Butt Rally on a factory-demo (completely stock) Bonnie in just 19 hours (just over 1000 miles). A 600-mile day can even be fun if you're in the right frame of mind.

But it's more enjoyable with days in the 400-500 range; first time, make it 300 and see how you do. You can always add miles at the end if it's too little riding!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Yea, Galena is great.
I haven't been out there on the bikes yet, but when I got my truck I took a drive out there.
It's a nice little town, and I saw alot of Harleys. I definitely want to take the bikes back.

According to the map, there's tons of twisties, but I learned that alot of them are gravel. :(


Don't know where you've been going but since you're in Chicago you should check out Galena. About a 2.5-3 hour ride from the city. Lots of good roads to ride...twists and hills....plus lots of little shops and stuff to check out...Bed and breakfasts and other places to stay. We get a ton of bikes through here every weekend...unfortunately not alot of Triumphs.

Here's all the tourist crap:
Galena, Illinois
 

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You did take that trip, it went well I assume.
Yes, 2500 miles in six days at it turned out, and it was great fun! The first day was 700 miles of freeway from Minneapolis to Ann Arbor, which wasn't great but wasn't terrible; but after that it was almost all fun Canadian and Northeast country highways. Once you're north of Barrie, the Trans-Canada Highway is quite nice all the way to Sault Ste Marie. This summer we're going to find out about the section between Sault and Thunder Bay...
 

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just back from 1st 4d road trip,
day 1: 220km ( various stops, some site seeing, small roads 70/90kmh) 6h rid incl dinner at noon, coffee stops
Day 2: local tour: small towns, roads in forrest, open landscape 150km
day 3: visit local city 100km
day 4: retour half way small roads/ last 80km highway in heavvy rain :(

personally i find a continous 2h ride perfect, than quick coffee stop and another 1h/ 2h ride goes perfect.
 

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Yes, 2500 miles in six days at it turned out, and it was great fun! The first day was 700 miles of freeway from Minneapolis to Ann Arbor, which wasn't great but wasn't terrible; but after that it was almost all fun Canadian and Northeast country highways. Once you're north of Barrie, the Trans-Canada Highway is quite nice all the way to Sault Ste Marie. This summer we're going to find out about the section between Sault and Thunder Bay...

That sounds like a great ride. 700 miles a little intimidating. What kind of distance were you getting before you hit reserve regarding gas? I've done the Circle Tour although not on a m/c yet. That is some beautiful scenic stretch of wilderness from the Sault til just outside TB. You're going to like that ride. I have always been a little disappointed in Thunder Bay itself. With a name like Thunder Bay I keep thinking it should be as spectacular as Duluth. The people are nice though and they have restaurants a welcome respite after a long stretch of wilderness. Oh, watchout for deer, bear and moose.

I've decided that for my trip back from Virginia I'm staying south for as long as possible. I don't care about heat, we have been having just a horrifically cold spring up here.
 
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