Harley motorcycles are built for adventures. Sometimes, this adventure means a short high speed thrill down the highway. Other times, this adventure means a journey to scenic vistas far from home. Long-distance rides, also called touring trips, allow you to explore new locations on an extended ride. We’ve rounded up our favorite touring tips for our Harley riders below. If you need any parts or maintenance before your trip, visit Pfaff Harley-Davidson. We are located in Richmond Hill, Ontario.
Plan Your Touring Route
The longer your trip, the more you will want to build a touring route in advance. It may sound fun to tap into your spontaneous side and just see where the road leads you. But a longer trip means a higher financial investment, from the extra tanks of gas to the overnight lodging. You want to get the most bang for your buck, which you get by planning.
Start off with a list of sites you want to see. Then plan a route that lets you hit all of them. You can go the quickest route to give you more time at your destinations. Or you can go the most scenic route for a more enjoyable journey. Once you build your route, make reservations for lodging along the way. Booking in advance is also a great way to reduce the costs of your trip.
Many travelers feel compelled to bring anything and everything “just in case”. But this often leads to overpacking, which means you lug around extra weight unnecessarily. Be selective about what you bring. Most “just in case” items can be purchased at a local grocery store. Leave them at home but rest in comfort knowing you can go buy if you end up needing it. Odds are, you won’t need it.
But there are a few essentials you need to pack for a touring ride. Always bring along a first aid kit, a mini-tool kit, waterproof outerwear, water, food, and anything you need for your destination (medication, toiletries, clothing, etc). Once you load it all up, check to make sure it won’t come loose during your ride.
Use Ear Protection
Anytime you hop aboard your Harley, you should be wearing hearing protection. As you ride, you expose yourself to irreversible hearing damage. Hearing loss begins with sounds around 85 decibels of noise. Riding at 40 miles per hour exposes you to 90 decibels of noise.
Earplugs remove around 30 decibels of noise. This brings the noise onslaught as you ride down to a non-damaging level. Choose between disposable ear plugs, reusable wax or rubber balls, or custom-made earplugs. They range in their cost, comfort, and fit, so pick one that best suits your needs.
Harley motorcycles may be capable of riding for hours on end without stopping. But humans aren’t! Riding does take a physical toll. Backs get sore. Legs and arms cramp up. Eyes glaze over. Your brain slips into highway hypnosis where you drive and can’t remember the last stretch of road. These side effects from extended riding make it harder for you to stay alert and able to make quick judgment safety decisions.
Taking breaks during your touring ride helps you stay focused and safe. It also helps stretch out your limbs to prevent cramping or soreness. You can even plan breaks around scenic viewpoints or local eateries to make the breaks more fun.
Before you head out on your adventure, you will want to make sure your bike can handle the long touring trip. Bring it by Pfaff Harley-Davidson for a quick inspection or maintenance. We serve those in Toronto, Vaughan, Markham, and Newmarket, Ontario.