Thursday, June 12, 2014

New Gear and Making Ready for a Circle

A few guys from a forum I frequent are having a "mini" rally down in Flagstaff. It's one of those "Brand" sort of rallys. I sorta wanted to go... buuuuut... really, when I look in my wallet... there ain't much in there but space... still...

Then one of the fellas wrote and sorta pestered me to meet up with 'em... so I said... What the hell... and so I'm goin'. Don't know how... maybe a liquor store or two ;) ... but come the 18th I'll be hangin' it in the wind for a 1500 mile circle to Flagstaff and back. 

That said... my road outfit has gotten a bit scattered so I have to whip it into shape and quick.

One of the things needed has been a new tail rack.

I been meaning to put that on ever since I swapped out the back rest... near two years ago now. It just never seemed to make it to the top of the list...

But, lashing a camp on a bike without one is fairly difficult... so I found the dinero and got it ordered in.

You know... Yamaha is a lot like HD when it comes to parts. HD might mean "hundred doller"... but I'm thinkin' "Yamaha" must mean "Lots of cash" in Japanese...

anyhoo... with the saddlebag repairs and paint done, the pipes refinished, the signal lights and plate carrier and the charging block all finished up...

The old scooter is lookin' pretty good to me. :) She's ready for a ride...

Another part of my outfit that's been needing attention is my bedroll... thinking about that I thought of making part of this a motel run... if I could get one or two nights at cheap Motel 6's along the way...

You know... $36 bucks and all that? Wellll... I checked up on one in Moab... Which would be 'bout the halfway mark and a decent near 400 mile ride that first day... "The cheapest of any chain"??? well... how does $160 bucks for ONE NIGHT in Moab sound? Pretty reasonable huh? Bwahahahahahhahahahahaha!!!

Well... I know this pretty lil' meadow just west of Durango... just before you get to Mesa Verde that'll make a nice lil' FREE camp half way to Flag... Sorry Motel 6 but 160 bucks for ONE night is NOT any sort of a reasonable rate! ;)

So... my circle will be made under canvas! Buuuuut... that's a problem too... cuz my last circle I discovered that my old mummy bag is no longer tolerable. I just can't stand the confinement... but... sleeping bags are costly!!

Then... I was walking through good Ol' Walmart... getting some lil' bit of something or other and happened to notice their sleeping bags... polyester just like the big high $$$ backpacking brands. Same weight of fill...

... and $32 bucks compared to a hundred and better for the big names... So I got to thinking about bags.

You know they've always been sort of a problem... summer weight or winter weight. You're too warm or too cold... And with their cost... who can afford all sorts of different bags?

 Well... I got this "idea" for a relatively low cost experiment... with seeing Wally worlds price... I got to thinking... IF... they were decent quality... a guy could carry a couple of the lighter ones... and layer them just like we do our clothes! My imagined "problem" would be solved.

They've got like three weights... warm, cool and cold... and ALL below $40 bucks!... so... even if a guy goes with two... he'd have a bag a lot warmer than the "big" brands... at less than half the price when you look at the cold weather grades. I grabbed a cool weather for $32... and it's rectangular so I eliminate that confinement issue I built up with the damned old mummy bag.

Gave it a "soft" test last night. The weather here went pretty chilly and wet last night. I left the windows and roof vents open and checked that bag for comfort and warmth.

That cheap $32 cool weather bag was almost too warm :) and more... though one night don't measure it for sure... I can't see a fault in the quality of materials. it's the Coleman brand, which has always served me well... how much variation can there really be in polyester these days?

I've got a couple of poncho liners I can pin in or around it to add a few degrees if necessary... and After the "real test" of this circle... I believe I'll add that second Walmart discount sleeping bag... for the earlier spring rides and late into the fall.

I saw one really light thing. Only like a pound of fill... THAT would make an excellent liner.

So... Nigh on to ready to roll

Grab Your Handles and Ride.


Trobairitz said...

Bike is looking wonderful.

Have a great time on the road.

A year or two ago we bought cheep sleeping bags from Costco to take on the bikes. They work well so far and were only $30 or so.

Unknown said...


I'm envious. We went to Mesa Verde a few years ago and now I want to ride my bike down there and perhaps go from Silverton to Ouray. You're going to have a blast . . . You need a bit of a distraction

Riding the Wet Coast