Thursday, August 14, 2014

motorcycle camping on 250 rebel


500 miles across America on a Honda Rebel 250

7500 miles across North America on a Honda Rebel 250

see and read more about his trip after the jump:

Excerpt from the site:

Most people thought being on a road trip across America for a month was brave. At twenty-three years of age I hadn’t worked for almost a year. There was no specific reason to take a trip, no motive at all. I simply wanted to do it.
I had been planning my trip for almost a year. The passion for this ignited after quitting work. What started out as a vague idea eventually became more elaborate and refined. An entire folder of information was dedicated to planning this trip. On weekends, hours were set aside to plan. As months passed the folder became thicker and the assignments more ambitious.
The motorcycle I would be using is a Honda Rebel 250. The 250cc engine on a Rebel produces only twenty horsepower. No one ever encouraged cross country riding on such a small bike, only rebukes were given. I had only been riding motorcycles on the street for just a year. What meager monetary assets that could be summoned were from family members. Clearly I was out of my mind under these circumstances taking a Honda Rebel across country.

The original course is outlined in black any modifications are denoted in red.

Day 1; July 2nd

Destination: Sister in Pennsylvania

The Odyssey began. The starting location is Peoria, Illinois. Everything needed for the trip is being upheld on two wheels. Two saddlebags are full, one with clothing the other with just rain gear; a leather bag; a bag full of bathroom supplies; and a spare gas can. The most important asset is a wallet full of cash and a credit card.
The only goal today is to reach the destination. Stopping would only be permitted to take pictures of state lines, notable cities, and landmarks. 500 miles lie between Peoria and Pittsburgh. Limited to 70 mph, the drive would last over 10 hours.
At the end of the day the odometer read 562 miles.

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08-06-2008, 10:11 AM#2
Andrewsyc Junior MemberJoin DateApr 2008LocationPeoria, ILPosts31

Day 2-4

Day 2; July 3rd

Destination: Get as close as I can to Atlanta, Georgia.

My uncle lives 700 miles away from Pittsburgh. In a car that is an eleven hour drive. Any time spent in a car took 25-30% longer on a motorcycle. Pennsylvania to Atlanta would take 15 hours.

Cheap lodging sounded like a good idea. I began posting on craigslist for free places to stay. Imposing a budget was very important if this trip was going to last. The response rate was surprising; five calls in one hour from just one posting in Houston, Texas.

Back on the road, I-79 south toward Georgia offered vast mountain ranges and endless hills. West Virginia, Virginia, North and South Carolina, then Georgia; these are all the states I would be in today.
As I made my way through the hilly terrain I fell into a pattern of fifty-five seventy-five. Going up some of the steep hills the bike crept at fifty-five, down steep grades I managed seventy-five and even eighty mph. As long as disgruntled drivers could pass me I was happy.
Even with permitting weather I didn’t feel like camping out for the night. Around midnight, upon entering Charlotte, North Carolina a hotel sounded safest; no cheap hotels were available at the time. In commerce, Georgia there was a Motel 6, after checking in and unpacking gear it was 4 am. 687 miles had been traveled today.

Day 3; July 4th

Destination: Uncle’s home

My Uncle’s house was less than 100 miles away.
After arriving all of us jetted off to Stone Mountain for hiking, fireworks, and a laser show.

Day 4; July 5th

Destination: Uncle’s home

Nothing eventful occurred today. I changed oil, got some additional bags and straps for my bike, bought a Harley shirt, and saw a movie.

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08-06-2008, 10:14 AM#3
Andrewsyc Junior MemberJoin DateApr 2008LocationPeoria, ILPosts31

Day 5 and 6

Day 5; July 6th

Destination: New Orleans

An older woman had responded to one of the craiglist ads and offered free lodging in New Orleans. Over 500 miles would be traveled going through Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and finally into Louisiana.
After meeting Lola the two of us had dinner, which I paid for, and later had a beer at a local tap. Even in the absence of Mardi Gras New Orleans is still worth visiting. It seems from just the experience of one evening that New Orleans is a great place to live for a townie or a musician.

Day 6; July 7th

Destination: New Orleans

I had a whole day to do what I wanted. In the morning two hours were spent touring New Orleans on the bike. After getting a $20 parking ticket, walking sounded like a better alternative. From the French quarters, downtown was less than a mile away. Walking allowed for better photographs.
It’s still easy to get into trouble away from home; walking into a club I found myself getting a lap dance in a gentlemen’s club at high noon on a weekday, oh brother. Being thrifty was the objective but…
Later in the evening Lola gave a tour of the city to me

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08-06-2008, 10:18 AM#4
Andrewsyc Junior MemberJoin DateApr 2008LocationPeoria, ILPosts31

Day 7-9

Day 7; July 8th

Destination: Missouri city (20 or so miles south of Houston, TX)

Before leaving for good I gave Lola a hug, it was the least that could be done for free lodging and a pleasant experience. Another woman offered me lodging at her place just south of Houston. Today only a short trip lay ahead, just under 400 miles for the day. A hellish 400 miles it would be. Immediately after crossing the Texas border the heat became apparent. The leather jacket I was wearing was inducing heat stroke. Only a long sleeved shirt could be worn in this weather. Ungodly heat would only be exacerbated by the voluminous traffic. Houston Rush Hour traffic, which I drove through, was the most dangerous part of my trip. After experimentation, traveling through dense traffic in the passing lane proved safest with the 250 engine screaming at 80 mph. With dense traffic the bike was able to cruise at faster speeds because of drift.
Bonnie was surprising, she was 64 yrs old. A large woman but even at her age and size she was still pretty. Out of mutual understanding, she offered water immediately upon arrival.
Bonnie had a daughter who had run for Miss Texas and sons in the service, all away from home. I wondered if I was a mothers attempt to fill the empty nest void. Every woman who had responded to the ad had had kids my age. Bonnie coddled all of her sons friends who were still in the neighborhood. Bonnie exemplified the role of surrogate mother.
We ate at a Mexican restaurant. Josh, a boy Bonnie looked after, attended. As I sat across from them, her and Josh rehashed on old stories, stories that had been told many times; my presence seemed to give them new life. Even as a silent observer who had never partaken in their lives I listened and relished everything the two of them had to say.
Bonnie’s house was very restful, it was good to be out of the heat and have a place to sleep.