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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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Planning a Trip

Hello everyone,

I am not new to these forums, though it has been so long that I forgot my original name and password. I am planning a trip from Alaska to Florida. Anyone on here ever done a 4500 mile trip like this? I plan on camping out and eating mountain house meals with a Jetboil until I get to Florida and staying in a hotel there for a couple days to rest and then doing the same for the return ride.

What I am looking for is tips and advice for a long ride like this, such as things to pack, what not to pack and other little things that I may not have known about. Also, any add-ons for my bike that would make it easier and do not already have would be great too.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 03:07 PM
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Last edited by tOSUSteve; 12-30-2015 at 08:28 AM.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 04:16 PM
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Alaska to florida

Usually folks do it in the reverse, visit the last frontier from the lower 48.

I assume you will be travelling in the spring/summer instead of the summer/fall. I also assume that you are "bear aware" educated for camping in the wilderness in Alaska, Canada and northern and western lower 48

Check out a few of the adventure rider websites they have some great packing lists of what is needed and what is a luxury.

This is a cool chair to use if you plan on camping in some more primitive locations, Kermit Chair Company.

Basic Gear;

-Rule #1; always carry a good sharp knife on your person
-L.E.D. headlamp. Probably the most important piece of gear next to toilet paper and the knife. Bring a second one just in case you lose the first one and extra batteries.
-a roll of your favorite toilet paper, especially if you are primitive camping, keep this in a waterproof zip lock bag, wet toilet paper sucks.
-two man tent, room for you and your gear. Look for something lighter in weight but easy to setup, self supporting is best with arch poles and pegs in the corners only
-zippo lighter
-extra tent pegs, if you have em, you won't break any, if you don't...
-good quality, sharp hatchet with leather sheath, doubles as a hammer for the tent pegs, can also be used to pull pegs with the sheath on.
-good quality mess kit for use with your jet-boil stove
-extra melamine bowl, soup bowl size, can be used for mixing, serving, holding soapy water to clean your mess kit
-small size bottle of dish soap and microfiber cloth or two for washing and drying
-dryer lint, excellent tinder for starting fires, keep it inside two zip lock bags, pack it flat.
-go to a drug store and buy a box of 500 wooden tongue depressors, you can carry about a 100 in a zip lock bag, take a couple bag fulls and put one bag with your mess kit and another with your tool supplies. Use your hatchet to split them for use as kindling. They are also useful for stirring/mixing your freeze dried rations
-sleeping bag good down to 20F, a mummy bag works best because usually they can be stuffed into a small sack and put into your dry bag
-inflatable pillow, get one of those inflatable neck pillows that folks use on a plane. It ain't the Ritz Carlton but that along with a rolled up jacket will make a good pillow
-inflatable roll up sleeping pad, better than the ground but definitely not your home mattress.
-medium to large sized dry sack. This should hold your sleeping bag, pillow, dryer lint and anything else that can fit and will ride in the passenger position on your seat. Get a yellow one for visibility for both you and so you remember it when you pack up in the morning
-4 days worth of shirts, socks underwear, fleece layer for extra warmth at night or during rain showers, pair of shorts/swim trunks, 1 extra pair of jeans
-1 extra pair of shoes or sandals
-1 shamwow towel for showering, swimming.
-your regular riding attire and good quality hi-vis rain gear and boot gaitors

Here is how I would load for this trip.

Left saddle bag, all tools, hatchet, tent pegs and kindling bundles jet-boil stove and fuel and spare gas can if required, extra gloves and maybe an extra hat as well, selection of bungee cords and 25' of 1/4 inch rope or para cord. (rope or para cord can come in handy to make a second rain fly for your tent in bad weather can also be used to hoist your food up above ground in bear country to make a pinata for the bears at night.

Right saddle bag, extra tools in the bottom, shoes or sandals in the bottom as well, freeze dried meals and your mess kit in the middle layer and your headlamp and a spare set of batteries at the top

Tourpak, use a liner with a zipper that goes around 3 sides. keep all clothes, electronics and spare headlamp with batteries, toiletries and prescription medication (have your pharmacist blister pack your oral meds, helps to keep track of them and they take up less space than bottles, they can fit the labels on the inside cover for refills).

Tourpak rack, bag on here with all rain gear for quick access and strap on the Kermit chair in the canvas bag that it comes in. You can wrap the chair in a plastic bag and put it back in the canvas bag to protect it from getting wet.

Dry Sack, tent, sleeping bag, pillow, 8 x 6 lightweight tarp for a ground sheet or extra rain fly. if the tarp gets wet don't store it in the dry sac, fold as flat as possible put in the bottom of the tourpak in a kitchen sized garbage bag, dry it out at the next night stop or at lunch

Other will chime in with what works for them. There is no 100% right or wrong way to pack or what to take. Take all the suggestions offered and make a plan that works for you.

Calgaryglide
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2019 FLTRU, Tyggr
2016 FLTRU, Ruby, moved on to a new owner
2012 Road King Police, rain bike/teaching aid/will only go in circles
2011 Suzuki WeeStrom, Great Pumpkin, gravel rider.
2008 FLTRI, Miss Louise, moved on to greener pastures

Last edited by calgaryglide; 12-29-2015 at 05:12 PM.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 06:26 PM
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Calgaryglide provided a good list.
I'll add that you should use good backpacking gear versus camping gear. Lighter weight & takes up less space.
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Like I told you. What I said. Steal your face right off your head.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 07:34 PM
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WOW. That is an awesome list Calgaryglide. Looks like you've been to that rodeo before. Good luck on your trip. When are you planning to start this adventure?
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-30-2015, 04:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by calgaryglide View Post
Usually folks do it in the reverse, visit the last frontier from the lower 48.

I assume you will be travelling in the spring/summer instead of the summer/fall. I also assume that you are "bear aware" educated for camping in the wilderness in Alaska, Canada and northern and western lower 48

Check out a few of the adventure rider websites they have some great packing lists of what is needed and what is a luxury.

This is a cool chair to use if you plan on camping in some more primitive locations, Kermit Chair Company.

Basic Gear;

-Rule #1; always carry a good sharp knife on your person
-L.E.D. headlamp. Probably the most important piece of gear next to toilet paper and the knife. Bring a second one just in case you lose the first one and extra batteries.
-a roll of your favorite toilet paper, especially if you are primitive camping, keep this in a waterproof zip lock bag, wet toilet paper sucks.
-two man tent, room for you and your gear. Look for something lighter in weight but easy to setup, self supporting is best with arch poles and pegs in the corners only
-zippo lighter
-extra tent pegs, if you have em, you won't break any, if you don't...
-good quality, sharp hatchet with leather sheath, doubles as a hammer for the tent pegs, can also be used to pull pegs with the sheath on.
-good quality mess kit for use with your jet-boil stove
-extra melamine bowl, soup bowl size, can be used for mixing, serving, holding soapy water to clean your mess kit
-small size bottle of dish soap and microfiber cloth or two for washing and drying
-dryer lint, excellent tinder for starting fires, keep it inside two zip lock bags, pack it flat.
-go to a drug store and buy a box of 500 wooden tongue depressors, you can carry about a 100 in a zip lock bag, take a couple bag fulls and put one bag with your mess kit and another with your tool supplies. Use your hatchet to split them for use as kindling. They are also useful for stirring/mixing your freeze dried rations
-sleeping bag good down to 20F, a mummy bag works best because usually they can be stuffed into a small sack and put into your dry bag
-inflatable pillow, get one of those inflatable neck pillows that folks use on a plane. It ain't the Ritz Carlton but that along with a rolled up jacket will make a good pillow
-inflatable roll up sleeping pad, better than the ground but definitely not your home mattress.
-medium to large sized dry sack. This should hold your sleeping bag, pillow, dryer lint and anything else that can fit and will ride in the passenger position on your seat. Get a yellow one for visibility for both you and so you remember it when you pack up in the morning
-4 days worth of shirts, socks underwear, fleece layer for extra warmth at night or during rain showers, pair of shorts/swim trunks, 1 extra pair of jeans
-1 extra pair of shoes or sandals
-1 shamwow towel for showering, swimming.
-your regular riding attire and good quality hi-vis rain gear and boot gaitors

Here is how I would load for this trip.

Left saddle bag, all tools, hatchet, tent pegs and kindling bundles jet-boil stove and fuel and spare gas can if required, extra gloves and maybe an extra hat as well, selection of bungee cords and 25' of 1/4 inch rope or para cord. (rope or para cord can come in handy to make a second rain fly for your tent in bad weather can also be used to hoist your food up above ground in bear country to make a pinata for the bears at night.

Right saddle bag, extra tools in the bottom, shoes or sandals in the bottom as well, freeze dried meals and your mess kit in the middle layer and your headlamp and a spare set of batteries at the top

Tourpak, use a liner with a zipper that goes around 3 sides. keep all clothes, electronics and spare headlamp with batteries, toiletries and prescription medication (have your pharmacist blister pack your oral meds, helps to keep track of them and they take up less space than bottles, they can fit the labels on the inside cover for refills).

Tourpak rack, bag on here with all rain gear for quick access and strap on the Kermit chair in the canvas bag that it comes in. You can wrap the chair in a plastic bag and put it back in the canvas bag to protect it from getting wet.

Dry Sack, tent, sleeping bag, pillow, 8 x 6 lightweight tarp for a ground sheet or extra rain fly. if the tarp gets wet don't store it in the dry sac, fold as flat as possible put in the bottom of the tourpak in a kitchen sized garbage bag, dry it out at the next night stop or at lunch

Other will chime in with what works for them. There is no 100% right or wrong way to pack or what to take. Take all the suggestions offered and make a plan that works for you.

Calgaryglide
Thank you very much Calgaryglide. I am familiar on how to survive in bear country, having grown up here in Alaska and being a hunter. I plan on leaving around the end of July/beginning of August so the weather should be pretty mild.

The Kermit chairs look really nice. I wasn't really planning on taking a chair, but that has me really thinking about it. I always carry a folding knife on me no matter what, I was also planing on carrying my combat knife as well and a small sharpening kit. I was also planning on taking wet wipes as well as a good roll of TP, it helps with field sanitation, years in the army have taught me that one. I planned on taking a couple headlamps and batteries, and possibly a small magnetic light. Sleeping bag(0* lightweight mummy bag), sleeping pad, inflatable pillow and a 3 man tent is gonna be my sleeping set up. All of it is backpacking gear that is used for sheep hunting and the such. The lint and tongue depressors is a good idea. I also plan to take a kindling shaver as well. Dry sac and the other stuff will be great to have as well.

Why the board shorts though?
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-30-2015, 09:13 PM
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Why the board shorts though?

Never know when you might come across a nice hotspring pool that the public likes to enjoy.

Believe me, even the ones off the beaten path are known and you don't want to be caught in one and be the only guy in there going commando. Great game to play if you are caught is "Dink or finger" keeps em guessing.

Calgaryglide


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2019 FLTRU, Tyggr
2016 FLTRU, Ruby, moved on to a new owner
2012 Road King Police, rain bike/teaching aid/will only go in circles
2011 Suzuki WeeStrom, Great Pumpkin, gravel rider.
2008 FLTRI, Miss Louise, moved on to greener pastures
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-31-2015, 12:04 AM
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Calgaryglider. With that post all I could think of is the movie Wild hogs when they are in the hot spring. Lol
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-31-2015, 02:32 AM
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July/beginning of August- sun block of your choosing would be a necessity.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-31-2015, 06:41 AM
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I would also suggest that you ride across Canada from Jasper National Park on into Banf National Park, then come down south into Glacier Canada and then the Going to the Sun Road in Glacier Us. You can then head to Red Lodge and catch The Beartooth Highway and Chief Joseph Highway into Cody Wy. That then gives you a chance to ride thru Yellowstone before heading south and even catch Rocky Mountain National Park. These rides here or bucket list rides and could easily be done in one great swoop. Good luck and happy riding.
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