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1900 miles around Lake Superior with the FJ09 (PIC HEAVY)


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So this was my first tour with the FJ-09. I did a few large trip before with my Yamaha FZ8, but sold it for the FJ09 specifically for long distance travel. I was excited to put it to the test. 
I found another FJ-09 owner that was selling some gear at a great price:
SW-Motech Engine Guard
T-Rex Frame Sliders
Corbin Seat
Beyond that I added purchased
Oxford heated Grips
SW Motech Engage tank bag
Other bike mods/acc:
Cal Sci Large Windscreen
OEM Panniers
Kreiga 30L pack
Motorcycle Gear: (My main focus for gear has always been safety and weatherproof)
Gerbing Heated Jacket
Aerostich R-3 Suit
Sidi Adventure 2 Gore Boots
Racer High Speed Glove
KNOX Covert Hand Armour Waterproof Gloves 
Shoei Qwest Helmet
Warbonnet Blackbird xlc w/ whoopie slings
Outdoor Equipment Supplier 4 season Tarp
Hammock Gear Incubator underquilt
Got everything installed, changed the Oil/Filter and I was ready to go.
This was the basic ride (ignore white pins). I used ridelakesuperior.com to help plan the trip, and they will even send you a free map.
I started in Minneapolis, Minnesota and rode up to Duluth with a buddy riding a Honda Shadow. Nice easy going ride.
Finally made it into Duluth and stayed with friends for the night. Woke up and said hello to Aerostich and toured their factory/retail space. They make everything right in Duluth. I found the iron man suit I'm wearing a few years back on sale there and they tailored it to fit me. I picked up a small air compressor and flat tire kit just in case. 
Made my way up the North Shore until I had to stop for a slice of famous pizza:
Ended my second night outside the town of Nipigon where I set my hammock up in a rest area. I used Free Campsite.net quite a bit on this trip to find spots to crash.
Woke up the next day and rode up to Lake Nipigon. I ended a 21 day canoe trip paddling across the lake years 10 ago so I wanted to see it again. It was cold and rained the entire way just like I remembered. I had my Gerbing heated jacket keeping me warm, and the Aerostich suit kept me perfectly dry the entire time. Seriously that suit is amazing.
The rain was coming in sideways
Next stop was White River. This was home to the original Winnie the Pooh, and you could camp in the park right behind the statue. I luckily found two birch trees that held my hammock quite nicely. I met a few folks on bicycles that were touring around the lake.
Woke up to another rainy day. Typical Canada. I drove through Lake Superior Provincial Park which was just stunning on my way to the border. 
Finally got some sunshine:
Drove straight through to Michigan and camped late at night. Woke up and drove up to Copper Harbor.
I got some breakfast in Paradise, Michigan:
Met Santa in Christmas, Michigan:
Getting out of Canada meant I could finally use my radar detector again. A few straps got lost so I had to improvise with rubber bands:
Driving up to Copper Harbor was my favorite road. It was windy and hilly and just beautiful. Felt like a rollercoaster.
Went through Gay, Michigan: 
I found some more free camping at Copper Harbor. The road kept getting worse and worse:
 f9MN9ZW.jpgI found a place to park and hiked in a 1/2 mile to the Lake. All of Lake Superior was glass. It was stunning. I set up camp and walked up on some rocks and had a feast as I watched the stars and enjoyed Michigan's finest lake and beer.
It felt like I was the only person for miles. I smoked a cigar and just watched the stars.
Woke up the next morning and had some coffee on the lake. It felt amazing.
had a morning full of twisties on the west side of the Michigan tip, and headed into Wisconsin. I stopped at a Gyro place in Ashland and they we kind enough to let me hose off all the dirt on my bike.
Finally got back to Duluth and spent the night at a friends house. Felt so good to shower and "unpack":
QzXDi5z.jpgI realized that I hadn't taken off my shirt in 5 days since it was so cold. I was not smelling super good. Ate a good meal, slept in a bed, and headed home to Minneapolis the next day. It rained hard the entire journey from Duluth to Minneapolis so I took the freeway for the first time of the trip. 
The ride was fantastic. 1900 miles later and now I'm planning the next trip.
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Thanks for sharing. Looks like a unique part of N. America. Two Hearted Ale is one of my favorites.
I'm intrigued by the idea of hammock camping - would you expand on what the pros & cons are, why you chose the setup,and brands that you did, what you'd do differently next time, etc.

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3 Nations Brewing Mug Club #100

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