Sunday, August 14, 2011

Going nowhere fast


That was the end result of yesterday beach landing attempt. Allow me to elaborate. I spent the week preparing my gear and daydreaming about a short -+ 300mile/480km day trip to the Atlantic (Rebohoth Beach, DE).


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Finally, Saturday arrived and Scully and I were ready to ride the tarmac. We set out at around 8:30am feeling rested and excited. The forecast called for a cloudy day with a 40 % chance of rain around 4pm. And here is where the ride goes downhill, sort of. As soon as we reached the Bay Bridge near Annapolis, MD. traffic was crawling so slow it made me think of that scene in Office Space where the older fellow with a walker is going faster than the cars.

Anyway, after paying my $2.50 for the privilege of riding an elevated highway at a blazing 10mph we reached the other side. Finally, after endless miles with cages around me, I decided to pull over near Hillsboro MD. for a roadside snack, hoping traffic would improve, sadly it did not. I turned around, and headed home.





By now is close to 1pm, the sky is looking mighty grey and rather constipated. I know that no matter how fast I ride, today I am the “statue” and the Sky is the “bird”. It’s shower time! The clouds opened up with such explosiveness it was pointless to continue. I pulled over onto the side of the highway. I only have my riding jacket on, too late to try to put on my riding pants. This is a serious summer shower; cars and semis are rolling by and splashing Scully. Not much I could do but watch and stay off the shoulder myself. After awhile the rain let up and I hopped back on the saddle, my first time riding in the rain, on the highway! Nice planning. I finally made it home 150 miles/240km short of my goal, saturated but safe.

This was supposed to be a training run in preparation for an upcoming tour, and it served its purpose. Main lesson: always bring all your rain gear, and spring for waterproof gloves! Amazingly, the bike handled the slick road rather well. Sure I had to slow down and take it easy but the bike felt sure-footed and stable. After 440miles/704km I am still adjusting to the new riding position. Like any aspiring endurance athlete, I must train, before my body can withstand hundreds of miles on the saddle.

There are a few motor biking axioms. First, when your start riding your friends will tell you that riding motorbikes is dangerous, valid point. Second, from the rider’s perspective, riders will tell you that riding is Fun. And, yes there are close calls, rainy days, and aching, sore muscles at the end of a long ride. So why do we get up the next day so anxious to reach our next destination and called it fun? This, I’m unable to explain; you will have to go out and ride and try it for yourself.

4 comments:

  1. How did your saddle bags fare in the rain. Looking for a set atm.

    Great blog btw. Looking forward to touring on my CBR250R as well. Seems perfectly suited for it. I too need to work on my riding position, but that's getting better with time. 1200 miles on mine so far, but the longest ride has been 3 hours.

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  2. Thanks. The Saddlebags and Tankbag are not waterproof. They do come with rain covers, the tankbag cover worked well and kept my stuff dry. It has a clear plastic cover so that you can still see the map while is on. I have not used the covers for the saddlebags. The stuff I had in them got soak. I plan to use heavey duty black trash bags as liners in the future to keep my stuff dry. Another 250 rider recommended these,(http://www.ninja250blog.com/gearkit/first-gear-silverstone-luggage-review/) although he did mention that they were not waterproof. I plan to do a full gear review later on as I log more miles. Good luck with your touring and enjoy the ride.

    Fredo

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  3. Fredo -
    Great blog, thanks for starting it. As a fellow 250R rider in the DC Metro area I can relate to the crawling traffic of hwy 50! Keep the posts coming.

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  4. Thanks, and you are welcome. Enjoy the 250R!

    Fredo

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