The Great American Ride (Preparation)


I’m planning a cross country road trip, it’s something I’ve been thinking about for many years. I initially thought I would do this on a bicycle, but I’m going to leave that for next year 🙂

The trip is planned around visits to Glacier and Redwood National Parks (both of which I’ve been dreaming about visiting for many years now). It’s my birthday present to myself.

My trusty Katana 600 will be the steed for this jaunt through wide open spaces.

Here’s the itinerary. It might change a bit, weather is the big unknown and the times are a little tight. But I get 8 days in Glacier and 5 in Redwood. A total of 11 full days traveling with the little bit on Friday, Aug 26 to kick it off.

  • Aug 26: Greenwich, CT –> Snow Shoe, PA (268 mi)
  • Aug 27: Snow Shoe, PA –> Champaign, IL (630 mi)
  • Aug 28: Champaign, IL –> Sioux Falls, SD (630 mi)
  • Aug 29: Sioux Falls, SD –> Buffalo, WY (556 mi)
  • Aug 30: Buffalo, WY –> Browning, MT (509 mi)
  • Aug 31 – Sep 7: Glacier, NP
  • Sep 7: celebrate birthday biggrin
  • Sep 8: Columbia Falls, MT –> Seattle, WA (537 mi)
  • Sep 9: Seattle WA
  • Sep 10: Seattle, WA –> Crescent City, CA (499 mi)
  • Sep 11 – Sep 14: Redwood NP
  • Sep 15: Eureka, CA –> Elko, NV (725 mi)
  • Sep 16: Elko, NV –> Cheyenne, WY (666 mi)
  • Sep 17: Cheyenne, WY –> Des Moines, IA (628 mi)
  • Sep 18: Des Moines, IA –> Cleveland, OH (662 mi)
  • Sep 19: Cleveland, OH –> Greenwich, CT (495 mi)
  • Sep 20: Order a Red Busa (external link)

Total distance: 6,700 miles (give or take a few). Things to take:

  1. Open Mind and Pleasant Attitude.
  2. Riding Gear
    • Helmet
    • Touring Jacket, Gloves and Pants
    • Armor
    • Boots
    • E-Z Pass
    • Pack of ear-plugs
    • registration/insurance
  3. Luggage
    • Tank Bag
    • Rear seat Bag
  4. Clothes
    • T-shirts
    • socks
    • boxers
    • Jeans
    • Cotton pants
    • Sandals
    • Bathing suit
    • Sunglasses
    • Contacts and solution
    • Neck warmer
    • Winter gloves
  5. Other
    • iPod
    • GPS
    • Paper and writing pad
    • Iyengar’s “Light on Yoga”
    • Camera and charger
    • Cell phone and charger
    • Water bottle
    • Granola bars
    • Maps (including Starmap)
    • Binoculars
    • Flashlight
    • First Aid Kit
    • Tire gauge
    • Chain Cleaner
    • Chain Lube
    • Brake Fluid
    • Knife

Things to ship ahead (to GNP and RNP for backcountry camping):

  • Expedition Backpack
  • Technical pants, t-shirt, jacket and socks
  • Boots
  • Tent
  • Head lamp and Flashlight
  • Spare batteries
  • Maps and book
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Therma Rest
  • Water Bottles
  • Stove
  • Matches/lighter
  • Cup, spoons
  • Pot
  • More granola bars
  • Food: Miso, Dried fish, instant rice, protein shake?, cheese,
  • Water purification
  • Insect repellent
  • Sunblock and Hat
  • Purell
  • Starchart
  • Ice axe
  • Walking Poles
  • Bear bag/container
  • Knife, Swiss Army knife+altimeter/compass

Schedule a service in Crescent City to cover:

  • Engine Oil and Filter
  • Air filter
  • Rear tire replacement (if required)