Day one:  The guys have been on the trail for 3.5 hrs according to texts from JB last night.   I’m home in Key West Florida, thinking about the trip to come and thought I’d put a few things here on this blog.   I leave next Saturday for Denver where I have kept the bike since I bought it 7 years ago.  It is a street plated XR600R Honda and I know it very well.  Strengths and weaknesses alike.  Luckily it’s got way more strengths that are important for this type of travel.  Reliability, power, speed, torque, toughness.  The biggest weakness is the tubular steel frame and the lack of hard mounting points for a good rack to carry saddle bags.  I fixed that issue recently by having an expert welder install some steel mounting tabs to the frame.  I put this off for a long time as it’s hard to commit to a weld on a beautiful stock bike.  Now that we did it I’m very happy we did.  My welder friend Teague also fabricated a really neat mount for a rotopax mount I have for a 1 gal water jug I have for long trips.   I’ve done a ton of prep already and have about another day of work to do when I get out to Denver.

Below are a few shots of my camping gear. I’m carrying a hell of a lot more stuff than this and I’ll take pics of it all right before I load the bike next week.  The rope and hooks are for the orange “bear bag”.  With this I can put food and toiletries that may attract a bear high up in a tree and away from camp.  I also have a huge can of bear spray just in case.